Thursday, November 11, 2010

Strange sounds from the cellar

I am trying to turn myself into the local "guy who knows stuff about bicycles". My workshop above. A degree of fame for fixing stuff will give me an evolutionary edge once civilization as we know it crumples into nothing and we have to start bartering again.

Hopefully, by then the entire neighbourhood will have become interconnected, autonomous and resilient thanks to ever-increasing mutual dependency. Who knows.

Now is the time for changing to studded tires. When I bought my first set fifteen years ago I was met with much ridicule. "Ooh. So Mr. Special Person needs special tires." But now everybody has them and the price has gone way down, not that anybody seems greatful. Compared to how much we bitch when prices go up, we really don't seem to care much when they go down.

Above is the handlebar basket on a bicycle that belongs to Sil, my squaw. Those blobs cover up some nasty screws that would rip and tear her purses. They really wrecked those purses, putting protruding screws there really is not such a stroke of designer genius. The substance I've used is called Sugru, it is soft, squishy and remains sort of soft and eraser-like when cured. I am very satisfied, and considering I am almost never satisfied with anything invented in my lifetime this is saying something.

And here, above, is a trick I did to keep the trolls from nicking Sil's bicycle seat. I have only read about this safety measure, never seen anyone do it around here. It's a bicycle chain I've looped around the rear stays, with an old inner tube around it to keep it from rattling.

Seat theft is really a mystery to me. The chance of the thief ending up with a seat stem that fits his own bike isn't that big. And the seats themselves usually don't cost all that much, so there's no second-hand market I know of.

But this is not the only thing I don't understand.


coastkid said...

looks a decent sized man cave for bicycle fiddling there!
good idea on the under seat lock

Gwen Buchanan said...

You are a true entrepreneur.

dogsled_stacie said...

"Evolutionary edge" - I love it!!!

Eileen A. Brodie said...

When I was around 12 years old, (almost 40 years ago) I used to have a dream about the freeways being completely empty of cars. Swarms of giddy but considerate cyclists sped along the concrete ribbons. I always thought it was a slightly plausible scenario waiting to happen in our future. Nowadays, I wouldn't mind a turf ribbon more suitable for knobby tires and living things. Anyway, it is true that bicycles make a bridge to so many things. Enjoy reading about your bicycle projects and your world view. Here is how some of us in the Rocky Mountains are working on interdependance and resilience issues:

"To help provide a bit of hope via bike to local homeless and others in need. Many are friendless and have nothing. The gift of a bicycle is not just a gift of transportation, but it is a gift of hope that is also unconditional. Bike Clinic Too is here to make a difference in the lives of the needy. Bicycles are perfect transportation as they offer reliable, inexpensive transportation. For some, the gift of a bicycle alone is a gift of hope...that someone still cares..."