7 Aug 2012

6th August 2012

6th 60-70F, 16-20C, sunny periods. Forecast to pour down all day! They were right so far. Then it cleared up.  Quite windy on the way back. 13 easy miles as a token R&R day.

Pm: The promised rain stayed away with warm sunshine all afternoon. I tried fitting my clip-on, tri-bars but they were too high. They wouldn't make me any lower on the trike. Which is pointless. I would have to lower the dropped handlebars far too much for comfort.

The other pair is much heavier and wider. So I would have to remove the handlebar tape to fit them. My "proper" 3T tri-bars are completely unsuitable for normal riding. They would need a complete new set of cables for brakes and gears. I would have to remove the bar-end levers from Mr Higgins. Not to mention too much fiddling about.

It has occurred to me to put a specialist TT "iron" together using my Longstaff conversion. It would inevitably be heavier than Mr Higgins. Though I could dispense with all the usual junk. Which I carry around as insurance like an oversized snail. This trike could be put on the car rack when wind and weather conditions were right for another informal '10'.

I left the trike on the lawn for an hour and a  snail crawled up the wheel! It had obviously heard of my snail-paced '10' on Sunday and wanted to rub it in! :-)

Early days when I tried the T3 tri-bars on Mr Higgins for fun. Still running sprints and tubs back then. (Disastrously with regards to punctures!) Amazingly, these handlebars weigh 4lbs without the Shimano, bar-end, gear change levers!

The British cycling team is still attracting Olympic medals like bees to nectar. Incroyable! As the UCI and Olympics officials say in their 5 star hotels while plotting to change the rules retrospectively to show how badly power corrupts.

Hansen of Denmark won the Omnium after a nasty crash in one event, getting back on and chasing down the field. Well done, Lasse!

7th 57F, 14C, windy, raining. Rain forecast all day again. I'll go out as soon as it brightens up. It's not so keen to dry out today. Another cloudburst! And another. The last few downpours had blasted all the moss of the north facing side of the roof. This settled unseen in the gutter. Until it finally managed to block the downpipe. Then the gutter overflowed and dumped the whole of the next cloudburst straight onto the roof of the shed. Which promptly decided it was about time for a good leak! Now I have to clear all the moss of the shed roof as well. To stop it happening again. Grrr!

The heavy showers kept up so I left late afternoon. It poured down twice while I sheltered under a tree and later in somebody's carport. Blew hard too. Only 10 miles but I passed 6000 miles for the year so far. The new computer bracket has sheared off already! Shortened it and drilled a new hole.

8th 56-65F, 13-18C, very windy, cloudy with sunny periods. Rode into the wind while I was still strong. Except that I wasn't. Legs a bit heavy and aching.  The wind was very gusty but at least it stayed dry. Saw a family (?) of four birds of prey surfing high overhead. The wind was so strong they had their wings almost folded up most of the time. The Vetta saddle is proving quite comfortable for these shorter rides. Only a 23 mile shopping loop today.

9th 56-65F, 13-18C, windy and sunny. 20 lbs of shopping. 27 hilly miles.

The DMI is blaming false image, radar, rain forecasts on the little guys in stripy jumpers. Two-banded hover flies, no less! This one has three bands. So is probably blameless.

All these flower and insect images were taken by my wife in her wild flower garden.

10th 56-65F, 13-18C, breezy, overcast. The discussion on compulsory wearing of cycle helmets continues. Before I paid quite a lot of money for my latest helmet I literally hated them. The new one was so light and comfortable I found myself forgetting I had it on. I would find myself at the gate and having to tap my head to ensure my head was protected. While it remains a personal choice there will be those who don't or won't bother.

Like the teenage kids on their way to school wearing headphones on their bikes. They haven't a clue what is going on around them! They rarely indicate as they turn so effortlessly. I hate drivers who don't indicate. Or indicate half way round the corner. Many cyclists are just as bad!

Drivers sit patiently waiting for the cyclist to cross a junction. Only for the rider to turn sharply without even reducing speed. How many times will that occur in a driver's journey before they get thoroughly sick of cyclists? How long before they stop showing any respect to cyclists? How long before they push past too close? Or drive across their path in expectation of the cyclist turning without indicating?

Let's make it compulsory for cyclists, wearing headphones, to also wear a tall, pointy, dunce's cap. Or one covered in bright warning LEDs. Instead of a fine, for failing to ride sensibly, which their parents will probably pay anyway, make offending cyclists wear a ridiculous helmet with goofy ears. Or one with lots of bright red flashing lights for at least the next month. The sight of the idiot in the "flashy" helmet will warn other cyclists of the dangers of being an idiot themselves.

Car drivers have largely got away with murder and mayhem because they are usually completely anonymous. Even when they go out of their way "tarting up" their "ride" they aren't individually identifiable.

What about a highly visible compulsory indication of previous wrongdoing when they are caught out? Why should a potential killer get away with anonymity? Let's stick a very large, self-adhesive, florescent, warning triangle on each door of their car.

Younger drivers are completely fearless in their haste to main and kill. Let's make absolutely sure everybody knows a potentially dangerous driver is highly visible. Let's see that great big, "L" sticker firmly attached on the driver's door for their first year behind the wheel! Basic human rights? What about their bløødy (and broken) victims?

I rode up the west coast to Nr.Åby. It was very hard work into the wind! The Vetta saddle was okay until 30 miles. Though it wasn't too bad.   Lots of classic  American cars on the main roads this morning. Must be a meeting somewhere towards Middelfart, or beyond. I saw a Red Kite at Gamborg. It was sailing along the tall, vertical, cliff face of a beech wood.

I tried nuts and raisins today instead of my usual "Junk Food" biscuits. They gave me a tummy ache for a while. Though I didn't bonk. 46 miles by Ventus GPS logger. 49 miles by bike computer. No sign of summer yet.

I managed to chop off the masts in all the shots I took of this sailing ship. It lies so low in the water because of the crew. I kid you not! I waited for them to lumber back on board before I could take a picture. By the time the masts had stopped rocking the hull had sunk below the edge of the dock! :-) 

11th 54-65F, 12-18C, sunny and breezy. Rode down to Assens to see the jelly fish in the harbour. Quite chilly at first. I stopped at Aborg to watch the wash from an invisible ship come ashore. There was complete silence except for the birds and insects. It was incredibly clear today. Only 22 miles so far. Plus 12 more. Warmer now.

My Panasonic Lumix TZ7 has yet another fuzzy blob in every picture! I had the last one removed under guarantee. That was just after they changed the broken screen. The repairers obviously aren't using a clean room for assembly. Perhaps dust or insects can get in around the lens housing? The blob is not on the outer lens surface.

The view from the north coast of Fyn towards the Fredericia-Middelfart suspension bridge.

12th 60-70F, 16-21C, breezy, sunny periods. Put 110psi in the tyres. Then I set off to a distant target. I did half of my '10' on the drops, in 15:30 for some practice on the way. Then found the local shops weren't open until 10am. So I rode down to a local beach to kill some time. Did my shopping and then rode home again. 40 miles before morning coffee.

Going out again. Where I found that a "Special Offer" at a chain of supermarkets was anything but. The shelves were empty. (as usual) Don't they have any consumer protection in Denmark? The whole country is riddled with monopolies and broken promises. From butter to DIY stores there is never any choice. The only difference between supermarkets is the colour of the trolley handles and their often filthy, plastic baskets.

10 more miles later. The farmers are now well into the harvest. It looks like a bumper yield. Despite a load of shopping I managed to sprint into the draught of a huge grain trailer. I was doing a comfortable 25mph until we hit a long rise. Then I slowly dropped off until I was in the headwind. Fortunately it has been dry enough to keep the roads largely clear of mud.

Back left, back right and front tyres in descending order.

All three GP4000 tyres are showing definite flat surfaces on the crown of the tread now. The wear marker dimples are still visible @ 2500 miles/4000km from new. Still no punctures.  The front tyre is suffering the most cuts. This is a flint strewn area of the world. I ride off-road much too often and many junctions and cycle lanes are littered with sharp gravel. I am delighted with these tyre so far. Apart from the price of renewal when that moment arrives.

Click on any image for an enlargement.

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