21 December 2010

Linus City Bike Spotted

Saw this bike in the South End last week, and the black and white and leather color scheme caught my eye. Linus Bikes are based in Venice, California, but they now have dealers nationwide.

The singlespeed with coaster brake and kickstand seemed quite practical for Boston:

20 December 2010

Photos from the Somerville Illuminations Bicycle Tour

Freezing cold but so much fun! Please enjoy some photos here from the Somerville Illuminations Bicycle Tour. Click through for a larger version.

Happy Holidays everyone!

15 December 2010

Brainstorm light mounting with me?

Hey everyone,
I've been pushing a dynamo hub since last summer, with all the best intentions of getting a headlight mounted. Now it's nearly the darkest time of the year and still no dynamo headlight. I'm having a hard time deciding how to get something on there. All these photos should click through to enormous ones if that's at all helpful...

I have a vintage Blackburn front rack, which I love for the consistent aesthetics to my frame and it's match to my rear rack. Also my 1977 frame just doesn't have mounting points for a Nitto rack (or a headlight!).

The rack has stays at two different positions, narrower in front and wider at the middle. I'm not committed to using a particular stay for the mounting point, but I would love to nestle the light as best as possible inside the protection of the rack's platform, just for help preserving the light while parked next to bikes who might be careless, etc. This is a city bike and I'll still be parking it and leaving it for a bit.

I have the headlight my husband took off his Brompton, upside of using it is that it's currently just taking up space, downside is that it's unclear how to mount it on my bike. I'd prefer to mount my eventual headlight to the front rack and not the fork, to keep my fork as blemish-free as possible. I'm open to the idea of buying a different headlight, but I'm wondering if you folks have any ideas for getting this (or any other one) mounted on my somewhat narrow-gauge Blackburn front rack?

This light's mounting bracket can easily be removed, leaving us with a plastic housing with a bolt going through it. I can certainly get a longer bolt and any number of washers.

What I can't do is invert the light, as there are wires on the underside that must rely on the top of the light for some added rain protection.

Here is where I imagine mounting the light, allowing it to be easily seen by other road users, and allowing my rack to continue to be functional. The mounting needs to be secure enough that it stays pointed forward and doesn't slide down the rack's stay.

Edited to Add:

Here are my clamps from Harris, as well as some spacers which had come from the mounting bracket on my second tail light set. If I go the p-clamp route it would be ideal to find one smaller than this one, I'd be wrapping a whole lot of padding to get it to a good clamp on the thin tubing. I went to the hardware store hoping to find something like that and they guy there suggested hose clamps, which I understand can be smaller and certainly very adjustable. He also suggested this pre-drilled metal tape stuff, the idea being that one band of it would go around the stay, and a vertical band would go up and over the rack platform for vertical stability. That sounded like it would rattle, and I could probably do something similar with zip ties (and less rattle). I'm liking the VO bracket suggested below for stability reasons, but I think it would also have a challenge in getting it on to my rack (maybe someone could solder it on?)

13 December 2010

Vu à Amsterdam

My French friend J was just at a conference in Amsterdam and sent this photo for our enjoyment. This is certainly a decked-out and cheerful bike!

10 December 2010

Have you seen the Camioncyclette?

What fun, a bicycle where the frame IS the basket, and vice versa:

More photos here and here.

09 December 2010

Somerville Illuminations Bicycle Tour

Join the Somerville Bicycle Committee on Saturday evening, Dec 18, to celebrate the coming of winter and year round cycling. We will enjoy a casual bike tour to see some of the city’s homes warmly lit for the holidays.

We will meet at the Somerville High School entrance at 6:50pm, departing promptly at 7:15 pm.
We will tour the city in coordination with the Somerville Arts Council’s Illuminations Holiday Tour. The start of our ride is scheduled halfway between two trolley departures, so we will not interfere with the trolley tour.

This is a winter evening ride, so please dress warmly and use bike lights. Holiday lights, costumes & festive cheer encouraged. Heavy rain, wind, snow or ice cancels bike tour.

03 December 2010

Handsome Bob Jackson

Spotted on Cambridge Street the other night, this Bob Jackson is a beautiful city bike.

A handsome bike, but not one that our non-cyclist friend picked out from the many left casually locked along the street.

The bell is nicely mounted on the stem, the handlebars partially wrapped with ends made from some wine bottle's cork.

That is a well-loved Brooks saddle!

And what pretty lugs and paintwork!

01 December 2010

Rainy Day Giveaway - one pair chrome fenders

They don't look like much above, but what you have here are a pair of new-in-packaging chrome fenders sized for Schwinn 26" wheels, in their packaging, covered with dust. Note that this size is different from 26" mountain bike wheels and also 26" Raleigh/English wheels... Sheldon has a 26" wheel size cheat sheet here.

It is entirely possible that these fenders will fit another 26" wheeled bike, but I'm thinking that since Schwinns don't get much love, these free fenders should go to a Boston/Cambridge area Schwinn.

Out of the packaging they should look like these above.

So here's the idea: 
Comment below with a description of your Schwinn. Give me an email address (in comment or by email: chiccyclist at yahoo.com) where we can chat off the blog. We will arrange to meet someplace in the Boston/Cambridge area, I'll take a photo of your poor fenderless-Schwinn for the blog, and you pedal off with some free chrome fenders for a winter of splash-free cycling. Ideally you'd send an updated photo with the fenders mounted, but I won't hold you to it.

The fenders will have to go to the Schwinn whose schedule is closest to that of my Dawes, but I imagine I've already set so many limits here that there will be only a few folks even interested in these fenders... and, like dating, it only takes one match*.

* If you're a cute single heterosexual man with a 26" Schwinn, please note that in the comments too and I'll send a cute single female friend of mine in my place. I won't even tell her why. She's got an awesome pink singlespeed, so you'll at least have bikes in common.

30 November 2010

Brown stockings and boots

It's a beautiful day here in Boston, much warmer than expected.

25 November 2010

Happy Thanksgiving to you!

Here's hoping you have a wonderful holiday filled with friends, delicious food, and bicycles!

23 November 2010

Mild in Ma

It was such a perfect day I was delighted to see so many other cyclists out enjoying it. Unfortunately my camera was not so perfect, we both seem to be lacking charge these days. Still, hurray for the lovely ladies out on Mass Ave this morning.

One handed, in heels.

Black and white and going places.

Yellow trees and yellow bikes make for an autumnal morning.

18 November 2010

Unusual Frame spotted on Newbury Street

I've seen frames where the seat tube hugs the outline of the rear wheel, but this was the first frame I'd seen where the seat tube straddles the wheel. Given the triangle formed there it almost looks like the lovechild of a mixte and GT.

05 November 2010

French Reflective Scarves

Ah, the French and their scarves, always wonderful, always novel.

A friend of mine sent a link to Rayon Jaune (in French), a new company north of Lyon, near the Swiss border, which offers these wonderful reflective scarves. As seen above, the idea is that there is a "normal" side one wears in town, and a reflective side that's meant for while one is on a bike.

The leaf print shown above is my favorite.

This dot option is my second-favorite, that's pretty wonderful.

However, I'm not sure either of them compare to these dragon vests, which may be my favorite safety-gear yet. Is it wrong to want a grown-up sized dragon safety vest? Yes, I'm a nerd.

04 November 2010

Reflections: Preparing for Darkness

Here is a test photo of my nighttime reflectiveness, as imperfectly demonstrated by a camera flash (rather than a car's headlights). It's easy to see that the wide strips of 3M Scotchlite on my Carradice bag and coat are much more effective than the smaller reflections created by my gloves and the sidewalls of my tires (though those certainly help in correctly identifying my bicycle as such). When riding long distance I add reflective ankle bands, but I usually forget when riding a couple of blocks in town.

Far more effective than reflectiveness is my own light source and you can clearly see that with my unbelievably bright Planet Bike Superflash. They say it can light up a small town. Seriously, this tail light is so bright my husband doesn't like to ride directly behind me. There are two other tail lights in this photo but you're unlikely to notice them. I have the main light and the helmet light blinking (when I'm riding in town) and leave the light on my fender on steadily, just for a change (and because it uses batteries less quickly than the brighter lights).

The clocks fall back this weekend, let's all be ready for the darkness!

03 November 2010

Reflective badges

A long-time reader alerted me to the fun badges being offered at Velorution.

Sadly, these fun badges are only available in the UK. In looking at the gallery, it appears an approximation could be made with 3M Scotchlite fabric and the Dritz button kits.

I'm thinking a lot about the time change this weekend and how to stay visible and safe when leaving work in the dark. Stay tuned for more ideas and questions.

02 November 2010

Better Chevrons for Transportation

Chevron's slogan may be "Human Energy", but this jacket displays the sort of chevrons I like seeing on my streets.

01 November 2010

High Heels and Coffee

It was early Saturday morning, she was riding slowly enough to not pose a hazard with her one-handed cycling. Love how those jeans fit with her classic black heels.

29 October 2010

Why you need a front rack on your bike

Carrying a dessert to a dinner party just isn't the same when you can't keep an eye on it, particularly if it's fragile and still hot from the oven.

(Yes Cycler, it's a tarte tatin, which I should not have made in a springform pan, but it tasted delicious anyway)

26 October 2010

Independent Fabrications City Bike

Spotted sometimes on Newbury Street, this bike always makes my husband stop for a second look. Those green and yellow rims are even the Indy Fab colors.

One thing that's made clear by this rusting steel washer and nut next to a pristine seat stay - a titanium frame makes some sense for an all-season bike like this one. Expensive for all of us who don't work at IndyFab, but certainly practical in Boston!