Archive for June, 2010
Thanks to Ian for flagging this
The Planet Bike front mudguard that comes as standard on the Tikit is fixed to the bike in only one place, on the fork crown. The short forks combined with small wheels send shocks to the fork crown and the mudguard has a tendency to vibrate. In my experience this has led to two mudguards dropping off while riding along. Without a front mudguard spray hits the bottom bracket area (and the lower half of the rider). So I took the bike Chris at Tony Butterworths and asked him to do his best. And his best turns out to be pretty damn fantastic. Using a standard SKS mudguard, the fixing point on the right hand side is the only fixing which is standard. At the crown he fixed the new mudguard to the remaining tab of the Planet Bike mount. This has the advantage of ensuring that the mudguard can be fitted and removed without risking the need to reset the headset.
On the left hand side he shaped the stay so it clears the disk mechanism.
Nice! I’m pretty confident this set up should last.
In the latest piece of car culture populism, junior transport minister Mike Penning has ended financial support for councils wanting to install fixed speed cameras. He is quoted as saying ‘The public must be confident speed cameras are there for road safety – not as a cash cow’
So let me get this straight. We apparently have a ginormous deficit. We need to pay more taxes or spend less. Taxes are often levied on social ‘bads’ like tabacco and alcohol. Speeding is incontrovertibly a social bad. What is wrong with cameras all over the place fining speeding motorists to raise a bit of much needed revenue? Don’t want to pay the tax, don’t speed. Simples (to quote a phrase).
So our nice new Government have acted quickly to stamp out the nastiness of garden grabbing, where those evil developers build new houses for people to live in. Oh those developers are so evil! They are like drug pushers but instead of drugs, it is homes they are trying to sell. You know – homes, the ones that keep people warm and dry.
Why does this matter to cyclists? Fact is people have to live somewhere and less ‘garden grabbing’ means more homes on the edges of towns and cities. And if people live somewhere, they might just work somewhere else. If that somewhere else is a long way away they will quite possibly drive. If it is near, they might walk or ride a bike. It is a simple equation, Traffic equals numbers of people times how far they are going. Longer distances means more traffic. And this from the Government that said it was going to be the greenest ever.
So fewer homes in Hallam and more in Stocksbridge, and more traffic. Thanks Nick.
Photo of North American traffic by smith on flickr
Kickstarter is a fascinating project – a new way to fund creative projects. I am really grateful to Andrew Curling for drawing it to my attention. And one of the projects they are supporting is called Bicycle Portraits – everyday South Africans and their bicycles. They already have some great photographs and I am a right sucker for cycling books and photography books, so it is not a difficult sell to get me to pledge support – which is in part a pre-order for the book. Check it out.
Summer’s here and added to the joys of wind around bare knees and squashed greenfly on the teeth is the sight of wildlife on the way to work. This morning I got a great close up view of a Little Owl on a post just outside Thurgoland. It stared right back at me as went past. (photo by me’nthedogs’ on flickr – thanks for the Creative Commons license)