30 Nov 2012

25th November 2012

25th 41F, 5C. Gales and rain all day. I'll make it a rest day.

26th 5F, 7C, overnight storm has passed but it is still very windy though dry. Whole trees are rocking. The wind died down a bit by coffee time as I tidied the shed. Then a heavy shopping trip for 19 miles. Had I bought any more stuff I would have had to hold it in my teeth! I have increased the pressures in the Durano Plus to 90psi just as an experiment. It certainly makes them feel faster but there is more obvious jarring on lumps and bumps. With my weight distributed between three wheels there is no real need for rock hard tyres. As long as there are no pinch punctures, of course.

27th 42F, 6C, still, misty and grey. I'll wait for the mist to clear. Spent the day trying to tidy the shed. In the end I left after 3pm into the murky dusk. Came back in the pitch dark watching the speeding traffic in my rear view mirror with some trepidation. Only 13 miles.

28th 38F, 3C, misty, grey, drizzle. Rode to Assens to shop.  The latest winter jacket (Nalini 'Team') seems to be warm, wind proof and remarkably waterproof. I thought I'd be cold without the cycling cardigan underneath but wasn't. The SealSkinz gloves did well too. Only 20 miles.

29th 36F, 2C, heavy overcast, windy and spitting with rain. I spent the morning removing the 10th sprocket to move the axles back towards the middle position. Then I could refit the mudguards without alignment problems. I had moved the axle so far over to the right that the tyres did not properly align with the mudguards. Which risked the tyres rubbing on the mudguard bridges.

It should have taken no time at all but the fixed axle cup has a wonky thread. I tried running a couple of other well greased, fixed cups in there in the hope that the axle housing thread would sort itself out. But no. So I still ended up with a lockring to fill the space where the cup would not go right in. I don't have a decent 38mm spanner. Making do with a large adjustable spanner.

On a bike it would be a piece of cake to sort out but a trike axle is hemmed in by all the housing reinforcement loops. Later trikes (Trykit and Longstaff) very sensibly use circlips to hold the axle bearings in place. Apart from removing damageable threads from the equation this has the advantage of saving the weight of four bottom bracket cups.  As I struggled to turn the fixed cup in tiny increments I could see why oversized outside bearing bottom bracket fittings aren't used on trike axles. They would offer larger diameter, but lighter, hollow axles. With such poor access to the inner bearings it is hardly worth the trouble to research the possibility of using these bearings.

As of 1pm it has started sleeting. I still hope to go out after lunch. It snowed and it sleeted and it stabbed my eyes with icy needles. My feet were cold and wet despite mudguards and GripGrab rubber overshoes. The GripGrab Polaris gloves started out cold but slowly warmed up despite going dark with the wet. The gears were all over the place despite constant small adjustments. Too dark to see what was going on back there. Only 13 miles.

Another view of the Brahesborg lake.

I wonder if DHL are on strike? I have had a parcel sitting in Germany for 52 hours according to their own track and trace! I paid 22 Euros for delivery! That's 165DKK, £18GB or 35US! Nice work if you can get it! I checked Trust Pilot and see they (DHL) are rated almost as badly as UPS!

You wouldn't believe my last troubles with this very dodgy outfit. Fortunately the track and trace records saved me being ripped off by one of their hired crooks/drivers. He could hardly claim my packages weren't scanned onto his truck could he? He was so upset that he couldn't get away with such an obvious theft that he dropped all four boxes onto concrete from chest height right in front of me! His supervisor didn't give a shit when I rang up to complain! Completely disinterested.

Had I any choice I would completely refuse to buy anything from any dealer (or person) who uses DHL for delivery. Why encourage them when they obviously don't care a damn about service? Am I having fun yet?

An update: Two whole days and six hours later the package is finally reported to be in Denmark. I knew I should have fitted a rack on the trike. I could have cycled down there, picked up the parcel and returned home again in the time that DHL took just to move the package across Hamburg!

30th 31-32C,  0C, breezy intervals, mostly sunny with occasional plates of cloud. My package arrived in the post. Which explains why it wasn't updated by DHL beyond arrival in Denmark. My blog has locked me out all day! I checked the help forums and found that I needed to turn off Draft.blogger in Settings. That fixed the problem. A rather cold day. Particularly when I had to ride into the northerly wind. The Aesse jacket worked beautifully under these conditions. As did the Dintex scooterist's gloves. Gears still not right. I think the rear changer is probably twisted on the bolt-on hanger again.

I rode to Assens to do some more shopping. 25 miles. Having shoved a massive 6 metre ladder up the roof yesterday, I had to follow the professional sweep to finish the job properly! He left a lot of flaky stuff up near the top. But at least he isn't a racist, bullying vandal like his boss. So I was already aching before I carried 24x10kg bags of fuel, twice, for the woodburning stove. Poor old devil! :-)


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