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Hokay, photographs.

So for the little jaunt from Seattle to Portland (200 miles in 2 days), I brought along my father's voice recorder to dictate notes about things along the ride. We're still working on digitizing the recordings (which include some real gems about putting the "man" in manicure, and about a bicyclist who decided to give up riding in favor of testing out a push mower at a garage sale). However, I've finally gotten caught up with the picture backlog in between the moments when I've been working on research, so here's the first of several photo posts. You'll have to visit the gallery to see the whole set, with captions. I've got the sweetest FrankenBike setup ever.


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( 5 remarks — Remark )
bluepapercup
Jul. 24th, 2008 06:19 pm (UTC)
Awwwwwwesome! Looks like it was a fun ride.

I'm very impressed with your l33t picnic basket skillz, and as usual, impressed with your bikeswomanship. (I'm bending English to my will, here)

I'm also totally hearted to see that your bike is a style very similar to mine, and you've ridden a zillion miles on it, which means I can too!
rebeccmeister
Jul. 24th, 2008 07:01 pm (UTC)
Yeah, that style (apparently it's a Nashbar mountain-bike frame, according to jawatriss, who built it) is actually pretty nice because it's really versatile. However, it's also a steel-framed bike, and not a particularly lightweight design, so it's pretty heavy. Last year I did the ride on my zippy road bike (Spud), but somehow I just felt like I needed to give it a try on the good old Jolly Roger.

We also saw a unicyclist and someone riding a tall-bike with an XtraCycle attached to it on the ride. So if you're crazy enough, you can ride pretty much anything 200 miles. :) That's actually what I love about the STP--there are all kinds of bikes on the ride, and all kinds of bicyclists.
bluepapercup
Jul. 24th, 2008 10:56 pm (UTC)
Wow, 200 miles on a unicycle - that's intense. I bet your ass is REALLY sore at the end.

I have a Trek bike (I actually posted a picture of it today) that I bought in stock configuration. It's an alumnium frame but it's still definitely on the heavy side. It's great b/c I can take it lots of places road bikes can't go, but I have thin enough tires that I still move right along on pavement/bike paths.

I am, however, beginning to long for a road bike. It was somewhere around mile 15 last weekend where I started thinking "this headwind would be a lot less painful if this bike wasn't so damned heavy".

Alas, bikes cost money, and I am about to spend it on pedals and a new seat (oh my crotch).
rebeccmeister
Jul. 25th, 2008 04:38 pm (UTC)
I would definitely recommend sticking with what you've got for a while, as you learn more about how bikes work and all that. Then, I really think the best way to go for road bikes is to buy used. But to be sure that you get what you want, you have to know what to look for.

And in the meantime, upgrading accessories can make a huge difference!
bluepapercup
Jul. 25th, 2008 04:46 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the advice!

After some consideration I am indeed going to shelve the desire for a road bike for at least the nex 6-12 months. I'll be in Death Valley for most of the spring, and won't be riding at all, and then next summer the birthday rolls around again and that might be a great chance to hit up the famdam for some funds. Also that'll be a year of regular riding so I'll have a much better idea of what I want.

I agree, I think upgrading accessories will help a LOT. I've decided that the seat is way, way more important than the pedals. The seat I have right now is the wrong shape for me entirely, it's barely comfortable with bike shorts on, and blindingly painful in street clothes. I didn't have time to pick out seats yesterday when I dropped my bike off, but Saturday when I pick it up I want to try a bunch out.

My problem seems to be that my current seat pinches the nerves/irritates the muscles that seem to connect my inner thighs to the rest of my body, as well as pressing painfully on my sitbones. Do you have any seat recommendations? It seems that less seat would actually be better, but I and my sore crotch have no idea where to begin.
( 5 remarks — Remark )

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