Why I ride…?

23 03 2012

Slowing down to enjoy a sunset is so easy...

Riding a bike to get around has a lot of benefits. I was on my way to a pub this week when I took a few moments to appreciate the beautiful sunset on a bridge over the Gorge Waterway in Victoria, BC.

My trusty Bike Friday Tikit...always a good choice for urban rides...



8 responses

23 03 2012
Meandering Bicyclist

Beautiful photos of you Bike Friday… Is that a custom front rack?

23 03 2012

Thanks. It’s a custom rack from CETMA. I don’t think Lane is too keen to make any more as they are time consuming and he’s busy with his production bikes/racks.

24 03 2012
Willer Quinche

what inspires us is the spontaneous result of a continuous exercise of observación.the idea are small or large impulses that make us evolve and advance.

26 03 2012

great shots! i too love the simple pleasure of getting around under my power, at my own pace, a moving part of the landscape.

8 08 2012
Rob K

Hi Vic,

I apologize for commenting here on a matter that doesn’t necessarily relate to this article. I just don’t know how else to inquire of you and it is our mutual interest in folding bikes that leads me to the hope that your own experience with such may prove insightful for me.

In short, I was committed to a reasonably short but steep and fast descent on my Tern Verge S11i. I was unladen save for a 7-9 lb load in a trunk bag. 20X2″ Big Apples.

Half way down the pavement became uneven due to multiple repairs. The force of it was sufficient to prevent me from accurately visualizing the road surface but fortunately there were no potholes, etc., to add to the drama.

But here is the real issue: It was then that I developed a high speed front end wobble that scared the spit out of me. I am not an inexperienced rider and I thought that my moment had come for sure. However by God’s grace and some panic stricken but judicious application of the brakes I was able to scrub off just enough speed to pull out of it. I had the distinct impression that an over application of brake would make me newsworthy (forgive the hyperbole).

I can find nothing out of sync with the hardware and once again, am wondering if there is anything in my narrative that leads you to a response as to cause?

Thanks much for anything you might offer.

10 08 2012

@Rob – sorry I misplaced this comment for a while so I’m just responding now.

A speed wobble or shimmy can have quite a few causes including:

– tire pressure
– tire poorly mounted
– wheel loose on axle or not properly secured by QR
– frame flex
– loose headset
– specific rider/gear weigh distribution
– steering geometry

I can’t tell you want happened, but what I’d suggest is you find a safe place to test your bike and try and recreate the shimmy [wearing helmet, gloves, long pants, etc…] If your bike is prone to shimmy you should be able to get it to do it again. If it was some strange and unlikely confluence of factors that caused the shimmy it’s not likely you have another problem anytime soon.

If your bike does shimmy than you need to adjust various things and check to see if that helps or hurts the shimmy of the bike. It’s a process unfortunately. If the bike is new and under warranty it might be something to talk about with your bike shop.

As an emergency measure on a full size bike one easy to way to stop/reduce a shimmy is to put your knee firmly against the top tube. Not sure what to do on a folder as I haven’t had a folder that was prone to shimmying.

Sorry I can’t be more specific. I would first see if you have a repeatable problem.

10 08 2012
Rob Krochenski

Thanks Vic. Much appreciated indeed.

My solicitation of your input was well founded as a potential cause of the wobble was identified by your comment about “frame flex”. It never occurred to me until I read that comment that I had noticed, after the particular ride being addressed here, that the main hinged joint of the frame had a small but noticeable amount of play in it.

This is apparently a phenomenon anticipated by the manufacturer as the Tern manual proscribes an easy adjustment in the hinge mechanism should it ever loosen. Without connecting the loose hinge to the wobble, I made the appropriate (and super easy) adjustment as soon as I noticed the problem and also made a mental note to keep the hinge in mind when doing routine inspection and maintenance of the bike.

While this doesn’t prove anything until tested, I rather suspect that I (i.e. we) have found the cause.

Thank you a million!!

29 11 2012

Nice Bike..

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