I rode 1340 miles last year, only about 25 miles per week. If you consider that I did not ride through the winter last year and really only rode from March through December, its about 33 miles per week. Not really a lot of miles compared to most riders I would guess.
I hope and expect to more than double that distance in 2013. My commute to work is 16 miles each way, if I manage to do that 2 times per week, that's already (nearly) double, I'm shooting for 3 times per week. 

Wish me Luck!

QC
 
So ... Here it is, the Bike I ride the most, my 1985 Raleigh Kodiak, its a bit dirty from the winter riding though.

Enjoy .... 

QC
 
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So .. I'm a bit behind on my posts, I've been enjoying the holiday season a bit too much I guess. I've been thinking of some ideas for blog posts and was considering posing about my new fenders and the install. Ultimately I decided to skip writing about that, I do want to do reviews of products that I buy and use, but I don't want that to be the only thing I post about, so I skipped it for now.
The great news, I received my fenders, installed them and have really enjoyed having them on my bike for the last few rides, why did I wait so long to have fenders on my bike, on any bike for that matter?



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The really bad news ... My Bottom Bracket Dynamo died during the install. Actually, I'm pretty sure that this is only a wiring issue and that the dynamo itself still works as well as both of the lights, I might try to rebuild it this summer and give it another shot. 
I have been the butt of a few jokes that I still have this on my bike, but it still works (or did until a week ago). It was very reassuring to have this always on the bike and ready to provide light whenever and wherever I needed it, no batteries to deal with, nothing to remember, just flip the lever and boom .. Light.
Just to be clear, the Dynamo has been my backup light for the past few years, I have a Plant Bike Superflash on the back, and some other form of battery operated headlight for *Planned* night rides, the Dynamo was only there for unplanned night or extended rides. I decided to take it off for the winter and change to strictly battery operated lights for now, I ordered a better headlight, the Cygolight Expilion 350, I liked that it was self contained and rechargeable  I haven't ridden with it yet, but I't pretty bright compared to the no-name lights I've been using so I'm pretty excited to give it a shot.

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Back to the Dynamo, and story ideas. I was really planning on writing a post titled "They can take my Bottom Bracket Dynamo When They Pry it from my Cold, Dead, Hands", but I guess that's on hold for now. I might still write it if it an be rebuilt and re installed, I might even look at updating it with LED's if I can find some. Frankly I'm surprised and impressed that it lasted so long considering where its been mounted for almost 27 years, and consider it a challenge to get it and keep it running. 



- QC

 
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On the plus side, I got a nice ride in today .. just  short of an hour. I'll take any ride I can get in December after work as a good thing, it was dark when I got home though, I'm glad I still have my Bottom Bracket Dynamo on the bike with a couple of lights.

I'm sad to say I overdressed for the weather again, the Temperature here was in the low 40's (4 or 5 Celsius) and I was cold when getting on the bike, but very hot and sweating after the first hill ... Hooray for Zippers! I'm actually taking this as a good thing though, the weather here is only going to get colder, and I'm really going to try and ride through the season (I hate working out inside and remaining stationary).

Staying true to my frugality, everything in the Photo except for the gloves, was bought on sale off season, The Pearl Izumi Barrier Jacket from Amazon last spring, the Starter shirt and New Balance 1/4 zip from TJ Maxx (or Marshalls) over the summer and the no name fill zip from TJ Maxx. The Gloves were a gift from the lovely Mrs. QC last summer when I really started getting back into riding again (Thanks Honey!)
I also gave my new Frasier sunglasses from Bike Nashbar their inaugural run tonight (with the clear lenses installed)  .. they worked out great!

So ... Note to self ... 40's is not 4 layers.

** Also not pictured is my helmet, I always wear one **

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I showed you my upper body fashion ... here is what is on the bottom.
Pearl Izumi Liner short
Pearl Izumi Thermal Tights
Pearl Izumi Fuel Shoes
and last but not least
Pearl Izumi Barrier MTB shoe covers (I love these things for colder riding the shoes have great ventilation for summer riding, but my feet were actually getting cold in the colder weather. Problem solved with the shoe covers).

I think I could probably use this setup on the bottom from weather starting at 50 degrees to maybe the 30s or even lower with some heavier socks .. I might throw in some knee warmers when it gets colder.
All of these were from Amazon and purchased at different times when I thought the price was decent.

You might be able to tell I'm a fan of Pearl Izumi, I'm not sure I'd call it brand loyalty, but it seems like I can always find something from PI on sale somewhere and I think they make pretty decent stuff.

That's it for now ... I have a set of fenders on the way to help with my goal of riding through the winter, I'm thinking of doing a video of the install. I'll also get to show off my ride, she'a old, but she still gets it do

 
I thought I was going to be writing about a great day today, one where I was able to leave work a bit early and get in a nice long ride before the sun went down. I did end up leaving early and did have time for a short ride, it was great to get back on the bike after way to many rainy and cold days and weeks. However, real life creeps in, news of the event in Connecticut today have me wondering what is wrong with this world ... why so much senseless violence. I don't know if we will ever understand what happens in the minds of people that carry out these kinds of acts.

As a parent and a human, I am sad.

 
So ... off to a slow start. Unfortunately lots of last minute holiday craziness going on, plus work ... Ahhh Work. Work has been crazy too, which is usually the case until the last 2 weeks of the year, then it will be a bit slow. I'll have some more available time then.

I have had a chance to put some rough ideas of what I want to do with the blog  ... here's a rough outline

  • Winter Bike Maintenance, covering both regular off season maintenance and winter riding.
  • Staying fit - I *HATE* the gym, but I don't want to get soft and have to start all over again in the spring.
  • Bike Fitting ... 
  • Training for a big ride (maybe not for some of you). My goal for this year is to do out local version of the MS Ride  "Pedal to the Point"
Thats all I have for now ... hope to see you again soon
 
Odd time to start a Cycling Blog you say, Maybe. It's about time for me ... I finally have some time. 
 
I know no one is reading now, and maybe ever, so I'm going to keep this on the short side. I hope to have some posts on Winter Riding in the North (If I ever get out there in the cold) and what I'm doing to keep in shape.

That's all for now

QC