Daily Archives: July 23, 2012

Zip tie engineering does it again, and the Feed

To explain the headline, I have a 25 YO frame pump that I got with a used bike I bought back in the BushI administration. It’s Presta only, and will take a bike tire up to about 125 PSI with some difficulty. Repeated use will cause excessive pectoral and triceps development. But after the failure of my mini-pump to reappear on command, it’s the only bike-portable source of compressed air I have. The problem is it’s only bike-portable on bikes that are equipped to carry it, which Blue wasn’t. Notice the past tense in that sentence? Via the miracles of zip tie engineering and the fortuitous presence of a discarded stub of seat stay material from a previous bike build I was able to put a pump mount on an aluminum framed bicycle. It was tested on the numerous railroad crossings on my trip to church this weekend and did not vibrate free or allow the pump to get free, but did permit access to the pump at desire. The down side is I had to remove the jaunty little frame bag to give room for the pump, and relocated the contents of the frame bag to the right pannier. If I can find my mini-pump or if I get another one I will put the frame bag back on Blue and take the tube, tire levers, and lock out of the right pannier and put then with the mini-pump in the frame bag. If I could get a picture from my camera into my computer I could show the world what Blue looks like now with the frame pump under the top tube and the kitty litter buckets on the back and lights and reflective material just about everywhere. Actually I have some discarded license plates with round red mailbox reflectors in the middle on the back of the kitty litter buckets as most of the reflective material, and the OE bike reflectors as the rest, for now. Plans are to get some of that stuff they put on the back of semi trucks for the sides of the kitty litter buckets, and some 12V Christmas lights made for outside use to put on the frame and handlebars.

I should also mention that I have to figure out some way of repairing the twist grip shifters that came with Blue. The shifting part still works perfectly, it’s the grip part of the twist grip that is literally going to pieces. The combination of the atrocious air pollution and my corrosive sweat has turned the right grip to a sticky, slimy goo that comes off on everything. I already know what I need to do to fix this with handlebar tape, I just need the handlebar tape and a few minutes when I don’t have anything else to do. This may mean I need to give the blog a day off while I go to the bike store to get the supplies and then remove the gooey remains of the grip and install the tape. And of course I will have to do this to the other grip to keep Blue symmetrical.

Up first is a report of a cyclist hit in Seattle. Boy hurt after being struck by vehicle while riding bicycle and 8-year-old boy struck, killed by car while on bicycle more 8-year-old hit by car, killed while riding a bike Notice the narrative in this report, only once in either article was there any mention of the fact that the vehicle had a driver that was responsible for maintaining control over it and was responsible for making sure that the vehicle was operated in such a manner that people were not harmed. The narrative was also pretty shaky as to how the cyclist was hit, taking on the characteristics of the SWSS in that the cyclist was described as entering the road, with no mention of where he entered the road from. The second link was even worse than the first, blaming the cyclist with nothing on what he did prior to the wreck except not wear a helmet. With so little to go on I can’t say how to avoid this wreck, but getting the infrastructure right might have prevented it. Looking at the wreck site in Google Street View this appears to be residential in nature and would be shared space in even the best infrastructure models, except that when I tried using the addresses from both articles there was a several mile discrepancy between the two sites as well as the age difference between the victims of the two reports. I’m beginning to think that this might be two different wrecks in residential areas miles apart. Still there would have to be some legal accountability from the driver for the wreck in a residential area in order to prevent wreck(s) like this(these).

A crime most heinous in CO. Denver cyclist killed by hit-and-run driver The bicycle was removed from the scene by the driver, on purpose or just because it was stuck under the car. Either way, the driver had to know he hit someone so the -and-run part is deliberate. Cue the rant about what to do with hit-and-run drivers that kill, and fire up the car shredder…

One article with 2 wrecks from NJ. Cyclists injured in two separate accidents in Ocean County The article has just enough information on both the wrecks for rampant speculation, but not enough to actually be able to tell what happened and how to avoid them. But I can state with absolute authority that getting the infrastructure right would prevent wrecks like these.

From OH a report that recalls some of the worst in UK wreck reports. Cyclist Struck, Killed Along Fisher Road We have a rough idea of the location, not enough to find it in Google Maps, the driver did not leave the scene, and it was after 10 PM and before midnight…

More fallout over the DUI fatality of a hyper-prepared cyclist in the Great White North. Family vows to take up cyclist’s cause Looking at the picture from the video of the cyclist as she was dressed the day of the wreck with her bike, the driver would have had to be drunk or insane to not see the cyclist between the red, the yellow, the ANSI Safety Lime and all the reflectors on either the bike or the cyclist.

Also from the GWN, a driver faces charges over hitting a cyclist. Driver charged after seriously injuring cyclist All I can say is it must have been a pretty egregious wreck with no possibility of blaming the cyclist for this to happen (jaded, Moi? never). The cyclist was wearing a helmet which failed to prevent his arms from being injured (?!), so the wreck must have been the fault of the driver.

And another wreck report from north of the border, Canuckistan this time. Motorcyclist badly injured, cyclist not so bad, in pair of collisions in Victoria The motorcyclist was left-crossed, the bicyclist was right-hooked, and I’m beginning to think that just maybe drivers from up there have no clue as to how to drive around anything smaller than an original Mini. Intersection protocols and y’all be careful up there, ok?

Infrastructure! from NC. Pedestrian, cyclist-involved crashes climb in Charlotte From the article Charlotte lacks even basic pedestrian infrastructure over most of its area listing about 2400 miles of streets and roads with no sidewalks or shoulders, even in Downtown areas of the city. The entire city seems to be laid out as a single-mode transport system dependant on door-to-door private motor vehicle use, with transit tacked on as an afterthought. The Democratic National Convention is going to be interesting with all the people trying to get from hotels to the convention center without their private motor vehicles that they left at the airport they departed from. Not to mention that NC is very much a red state that hates anyone that doesn’t drive a car. I foresee a bloodbath.

Infrastructure from the Twin Cities. Trail Closures Everywhere I can’t tell you how jealous I am of these guys. Here in the Suburbs of Hell we haven’t even begun building our bicycle infrastructure and they are already repairing theirs.

LifeStyle from the Niagara region. Niagara Velomobile Happening SAT/SUN Sept 15 – 16 , 2012 I really like velomobiles, as they are mobile shade here in TX. More northerly climes like them because they can be sealed up and the rider acts like a heater allowing shirtsleeve riding in sub-freezing weather, other places like them because they keep the rain and other precipitation off the rider.

Thanks to Cycle Twin Cities for a pretty picture of a bicycle in the wild to help calm my nerves. Twin Cities Bike Picture of the Day: 7.23.12

And those are all the links that gave me fits (or not) today.

Billed @$0.02, Opus