News and Events

Keep up to date with the latest news and events of Modular Bikes.

Monday, January 6, 2020

Buckley's Ride 2020

The ride map from Ride with GPS
New camera used for this ride is the Canon Ixus (top),  its more compact than the Olympus so I could carry it in my top pocket.
At the start, Audax organiser Sarah provides a briefing

Another photo from the start
Rick Harker near Altona on his Cattrike Musahi, note hat in sunvisor mode.

Rick Harker behind a small mob near Altona

Past Altona
GPS in action on the road to the You-Yangs outside Werribee
Rick Harker past Geelong
Rick on the Ferry, note hat in mudguard mode, he had been soaked by back wheel spray.
My trike back in Albert Park.

As I have done for a few years now, I've taken part in the Audax Australia's Buckley's Ride. It was only yesterday, and I was happy with how it went.  I'd acquired a fairing during the year and although I was using it on an Audax ride for the first time, I had ridden with it for 200k's plus a few weeks ago so was quite ready to try it out again.

And I think it worked well.  There was light rain all the way to the ferry in Queenscliffe, and the fairing helped keep that off me and I was able to leave my rain jacket in the luggage compartment.  I kept up with a small pelleton to the outskirts of Altona, and then I had to stop for a pee, so lost them for 30k or so till near Lara when I overtook them.  I didn't stop except to pee and get food from the back of the bike till Queenscliffe and a few people overtook me but in general, I was on track to catch the midday ferry with a few minutes to spare.  This meant there was no particular exertion to catch the ferry.

Had a good chat over lunch with Rick Harker on the ferry which had most of the Buckley's riders on board.  Over in Sorrento I took it fairly easy but was gradually thinking of a planned finishing time mainly as motivation to get me over the hills between Dromana and Frankston. There was a tailwind, and it wasn't too bad.  I am slow up hills!

Anyway, the cool weather helped and and I was able to combine a bit of energy with a reasonably fast but heavy bike to get back at my target time, doing the ride in just under 11 hours for the 217k, an average of 19.7kph and much faster than the 15kph required for Audax completion. Last year I did the same ride 45 minutes slower. Can't really say whether the difference was due to training, the weather or a better bike, but I was glad to have the fairing on board.

A few things could have been improved. If I'm going to have muesli bars in the front storage area, they should be pre-unwrapped. Not much fun and quite hard to do this while riding.  Some sort of spray deflector for the front would be good. I was getting spray on my glasses making things blurry. Or I could take them off and have dirt-laden water in my eyes, and a deflector or mudguard might have helped.

Thanks to Sarah and Audax for organising the ride and good riding weather (Very hot 40C+ weather is just as likely this time of year). I look forward to receiving the new bling and modelling a surround for it. Will report on that when the time comes, and I guess I will need to do another 200 to get the other bling type on offer.

Best Wishes

Steve Nurse

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Wheel Discs

3d printed parts
Thin clear tape is used....
to hold them to the rim, these 2 are close spaced near the valve hole,

....... and this is the complete setup.
Corflute screwed to orange 3d printed bosses
Tape added
Tape trimmed and rolled over inside the rim.
Added and taped the other side. This shows the bomb door for valve access which can be screwed shut and taped over.
Training ride: single speed bike in Lorne after training ride from Airies Inlet.  There were a few bikes on the road and I passed none of them. Bike is my brother's, frame bag is my son Ewan's.

Ewan , Phoebe, Johnny, Christine and Oscar the dog kicked back and played the quite complicated game Photosynthesis while I made the wheel thingies.

Hi, As mentioned last time, I planned to make some wheel covers, and this post shows the finished parts. Quite happy with the result, I will have to wait and see how they go. I designed the 3d printed parts at home using Solidworks, then printed them on my Cetus 3d printer.

As well as make stuff for the bike, I actually did some training this morning and rode to Lorne on my brother's single speed clunker which is about a 40k round trip.
Best Wishes, Regards

Steve Nurse

Here is a pic of the trike with the wheels on at the boulevarde in Kew. This was one of the 5 or 6 cyclists I could outpace on the road which consists of rolling hills next to the Yarra. Managed three laps or about 50k as a training ride.

Saturday, December 28, 2019

Buckley's Ride Preview

Saturday evening at our place, blogging, measuring and modding a trike, knitting and watching Killing Eve on ABC Iview

New Audax bling (top and bottom) which can be added to my display .
Shoe dilemma!  If anyone knows of mtb shoes with the cleat up near the toe (lower shoe) please let me know. The shoes are Fluid from Anaconda which are no longer sold there. I have 2 pairs of the Anaconda shoes, both pairs falling apart to a greater or lesser extent.
Hi, I've been doing a bit of bike prep lately, with a few Audax bike rides booked in.  First up I have Buckley's ride on Jan 5 which is a flat 200k, and then the big one, the Murray 1200k which takes place on March 14.  I've done both of these before, and Buckley's ride (or Around the Bay in a Day which has the same route) many times.  The Murray 1200 was long and hard last time, and I know that it will be hard work no matter how good the body and how good the bike.

So up to now its been bike improvements with not much training except for routine ride to shops and about a 20k round trip to study at Tafe twice a week.  Improvements already done and to come on the bike are:

Fairing: reinstalled today.  It makes the trike go faster I'm pretty sure, and has no effect on speed on the flat.  It protects the messy bits of the bike like the chain and the derailleur from the wind and as already proved should be good for rain and sun protection.

Rear wheel covers: plan to make some out of corflute, white gaffer tape and some 3d printer bits.

Tailbox switcheroo. Already done, the lightest tailbox with the lightest corflute side plates is on the bike.

Head fairing for tailbox: this should be quite light and easy to build.

Lights: I don't think I will have a generator on the bike for the Murray 1200 so have ordered six lights from China as recommended by Dome and Pete Heal and they should be good enough for the stints of night and early morning riding. Will report on them when they arrive, and I need a rear reflector.

Drink bottle holder, not too hard, I have done a few of these before and have a standard design.

New front tyre.  I have a few of these spare, the one I have fitted is a bit manky.

That's it, will report on any exciting or new developments, and Buckley's ride in just over a week.


Steve Nurse

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Ebike steerer mod

Scooter bits and 35mm adjustable steerer

Removing reinforcements from scooter fork

Setting up fork for brazing with 35mm mild steel tube.

Brazed part

Painted part
Brought the bike inside on a hot day to finish it off

Stripping brake and gearchange cables from the old setup

Aluminium shim beefs up the 1" od fork top to 1 1/8" to take the adjustable stem

Bit of finishing off, I swapped the pedals over for ones with reflectors but the threaded shaft stuck out a bit in one side, so off it comes with the angle grinder.

There, I fixed it.

A few weeks ago, I worked on a bike and did a sample job on the steerer, changing the steerer holder from a 25mm to a 35mm adjustable stem. This has proved to be reliable, so I bought a few more stems from ebay and have now changed my electric bike over to the same system. The above pics show the conversion process. The job of swapping over was held off until a hot day when I sheltered from 41 degrees C inside.  There have been several recent hot days here (it is summer after all), but some days broke Australian average record temps, starting or spreading bushfires across 3 states.

A brief ride confirmed everything's ok and now there is just a bit of tweaking of the handlebar position to do. The major problem that was there previously is gone now, that was the steerer flopping down during riding.

Its good to have the electric bike but don't use it all the time.  If I'm tired or the weather is a bit extreme or I just don't want to beat myself up too much it gets a go.

There are a few more mods I can do to hide away the wiring on the ebike, but I'm happy with things for the moment.


Steve Nurse

Saturday, December 14, 2019

Jacarandas in Melbourne

At Wecycle, Jamie Friday drops some wheels off in his load carrying trike. Jacaranda in purple in background at left.

East end of Abbott Grove

North End of Abbott Grove

We're well in to December now, and the year's not far from over, and as usual the Jacaranda trees are all out with their purple flowers. They are a delight when riding round the streets and I'm slowly memorising where they are. One at each end of our street for starters!  There was one out in Northcote where I was volunteering fixing bikes at Wecycle today.  Quite an impressive array of bikes out on the grass today, but somehow they have to all fit back inside. Anyway, I fixed up a kid's Byk, and half did a flouro-green vintage mountain bike.

Best Wishes

Steve Nurse

Monday, December 9, 2019

Missing Link Found

Robert Wood Leaning trike from about 2001


A few days ago I was browsing the internet looking for leaning trikes, and I came across a new one (to me). Although I had tried to find all sorts of leaning trikes, it seems I missed this one in my thesis research. Anyway, here is the link to Robert Wood's leaning trike project, on the Wisil recumbents web pages.  Robert cites Greenspeed's Paul Sims as a designer who inspired him.

Another leaning trike discovery was the Maruishi, found and restored at the Wecycle cycle shed.


Steve Nurse

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

OzHpv Challenge 2019 Day 2 Sunday. Slow!

Dome and his Baron bike next to the Stevemachine, Belmont Scout Hall

Early morning coffee at Peter G's, thanks Peter!

Just one of Peter's many bikes and trikes, a nicely restored single speed in the lounge room. He said it is super wobbly.
Phillipe, a master at the bicycle slow race,

Ewan , not quite so good,

but all were beaten by The Zen Master of the Slow Race, William R. , as shown in this video.

Dom, Shopping Race

Dom, Shopping race

Geoff, shopping race

Phillipe borrowed Tim;s rig for the Sunday events

Ewan, shopping victory ride

William, Go to Whoa

Tim, Go to Whoa

William, Bob trailer with lugs on back meaning another one can be fitted behind.

Philipe Slalom

Philipe Slalom

William Slalom

Ewan Slalom

Prep for go to whoa
Ex-Masters Champion Graham S.

Masters Champion Trophy handover

And the winners are! Courtesy Tim via facebook.
(Continued from here) After a quiet night and good sleep and pack up at the scout hall we headed off to Peter G's house who lives "just on the way to the track" in Belmont for coffee, Dom and I on bikes and Geoff in the car. Tim called in briefly but he was watching the clock and needed to open up the track. Peter was not very impressed by the state of roads in Geelong and I could relate to that given our experience rolling in to Geelong on Friday.

At the track, my son Ewan was already there warming up for the obstacle / off road, go to whoa, shopping, slow and twin slalom races to follow. There were six of us competing, and previous Masters Champion Graham Signiorini turned up to help officiate and hand over his trophy.

The events all went well and were keenly competed however, I must admit that I found some of the slow races excruciatingly well, er, slow. Perhaps they might have passed quicker if I had a deck chair and Sudoku to while away the time while watching (in particular) William and Geoff exchanging the race slowership in subsequent battles. The action packed shopping races took less time for each run.

After the events, Tim started tallying results and I went to the bakery and supermarket across the road and bought everybody a lunch of pies, coffee scrolls, chocolate milk, custard tarts and orange juice. This was my "event sponsorship", Simon W. had chipped in with an entry he didn't use,  Dom had organised the scout hall and provided breakfast for 2 days, Tim had organised the event, and William donated his timing services, so it was just me doing my bit.

After the presentations, Ewan and I got on the quite busy train back to Melbourne, getting off at Footscray, and riding the few k's on lightly trafficked bike paths back to his place.  From there I continued on home.  I got the same question about my bike at both South Geelong and Footscray stations, "What's it for?" and the answer stayed the same, "Just Transport".