21 January 2013

Hot season is here

In a normal December the hot season has started in Arusha.  This year it delayed until  this weekend as we have rains, keeping us cool.  On the commute today, I had to really slow up to keep from sweating.  It has been a great December and January in terms of temperature.

Do car drivers ever walk?  and when they do they defer to vehicles when crossing a road?  Today a guy is stopped at the gate into AICC parking lot being checked,  so I start to cross in front of him, but have to back track as he pushes past me.  No indication that I was alive.  Motorizied vehicles are  king.

Raleigh touring bike update

 I have finally finished the setup of this bike 70's Raleigh commuter bike.  On Sunday the changes I made, well , made my day!

I installed in the past year:
voltage regulator
700cc front rim
brooks saddle
modern brake pads
smaller chain ring
besides redoing all bearings.

However the rear wheel was still the odd 28inch rim, worn 5 speed cassette, worn chain.  the chain was so cheap it really wore out with all the soil off the road.  I have some skipping i was just living with until i could change rear wheel and chain.  I found a 700 wheel with 6 speed shimano cassette but the axle was solid and bad cones.

 It got worse and worse, and i lived with it, then Friday my tyre wore through, and a spoke broke and i limped home.

Sunday noon i started.  I had a too long axle, and as the rear wheel is dished it took me awhile to figure the right length, where to put the cone.  I almost called someone in but by 4pm it was coming together.  Then i took an old mtn derailleur, modified some pulleys.  I found a 7 speed chain , re dished the wheel, trued the wheel, moved the axle back and forth and tested about 5pm.  NO skipping!  shifting was never better.  made some final adjustments and went for an hour test ride at 6pm.  What a difference.

Again on the commute today I enjoyed riding a good machine.  One final adjustment and everything worked. 

However not sure where I am going to be getting the cassette when i need one.

New trail

A couple of weeks ago I posted about trying to climb Mnt Meru and coming down a nice trail along a deep ravine.

I was hankering for a long slow ride but Thomas and Dave were having none of it.  The showed up around 0730 and we went up the mountain and i suggested we try to ride up this new trail.

We could only ride about half of the 2 km new  track.  It was not only steep but slippery as grease.

However it was well worth , old forest, colobus monkeys, birds galore .  After leaving the road we didn't meet anyone on this track until we popped out on a forest road about 2200.  I was talking about what we do if we meet a forest guard and then a Meru Forest vehicle comes up to us.  He just says hello, have a good time.  Maybe he was an accountant.

We stayed on the forest road and had long descent to the ring road, then single track to ngaremtoni.  Great ride.

10 January 2013

Bike Fuel

My buddy Sekiji having lunch somewhere in East Africa.  Once for lunch I saw him eat a big amount but this pushes the limit.  I had a fun lunch with him, two more world cyclists and myself.  Photo by permission.