News and Events

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

Friday, March 28, 2014

Murray 1200 preview

Sunny mastering the wooden bike
Retaining lug on side of new suspension block

New light and the start of a fairing

Tailbox under construction

Tailbox with rounded corners

Shutter Precision Dynamo Hub

and other bits and bobs.  The RHYN device is a USB charger that gets an input voltage from the dynamo.

For the last month or so my aluminium bike has been off the road and I have been schlepping around on my wooden recumbent.  But its been off the road with a purpose!  I've entered the Murray 1200 Audax ride.  It is a clockwise 1200k loop through Southern NSW and Northern victoria, starting in Robinvale.  Its coming up in a week, and I've been fettling the Aluminium bike for the ride which has included
*  Replace seat and tailbox.  They were getting a bit tatty and I wanted to try putting "go faster" curves in the base of the box.  Some of the inspiration for my methods come from Pete Heal and some from "instructables".  To bend my corflute with the grain, I put a single slit along a set of flutes and used pvc pipe as a bending template.  Then I put gaffer tape over the inside rolled section of the plastic.
*  Installed a dynamo hub from Shutter Precision.  This is not a buy and go thing.  I bought the hub online through ebay, had it fitted into a rim by Abbotsford Cycles, then fitted the resulting wheel into the bike.  Lastly, add lights and hey presto, an Audax (all night riding) lighting system.
*  Reworked the rear fork and suspension as mentioned here.  The latest change was to retain the suspension block between steel block on th rear triangle.  This takes some of the slop out of the suspension.
*  Added seat padding!  I have attempted some quite long rides with only minimal seat padding.  Believe me, its a pain in the bum!  I have 2 layers of camping mat foam under my bottom and one layer for the lowest 6" of my back.  Over the whole lot is a layer of ACS10 / Ventisit open, ventilating seat pad.

So 1 more week to riding time.  I'm not sure if I'll finish the front fairing I've started. but will be lining up in Robinvale in just over a week.

Oh, and Sunny, a design student from Monash University has started some project work on my style of bike.  I've lent him my wooden bike so its off my hands for a while.

Here are some links for those intent on following my progress.  Lots of people going on the ride will have spotter trackers, or the follow-me app enabled on their smart phones.  There is a website to follow all those technologically advanced people but I won't be blipping on it unless something fairly dramatic changes.  I will be trackable via old school updates of the checkpoint spreadsheet. Christine will here from me via mobile quite often, she is on (03) 94818290

Online map.

Overnight stops: (Friday April 4 Robinvale)
                           Sat April 5 start Robinvale 0500, overnight Jerilderee @ 365k
                           Sunday April 6 Rochester @ 703k,
                           Monday April 7 Warracknabeal @ 965k
                          Tuesday April 8 Robinvale@1200 k

Checkpoint Spreadsheet

Online tracking At the time of writing Pete Heal and Tim Taylor are riding the volunteers ride and can be tracked.

Twitter Pete Heal is posting as I write.

Friday, March 21, 2014

A few new links

Paul Needham's fwd deraillieur mount.
Paul is building a trike a bit like my version of the ilean.  This link is to page 2 of a 2 page thread on Atomic Zombie.  I've bben advising Paul every now and then. Keep up the good work!

Azub blog on touring bikes with some fine advice on component choice, which would work well for commuting bikes as well.

Brad and Sharon and the Chookshaw.  Brad works with me and today I bought some of the eggs from the chookshaw.  The naturalest eggs from the happiest chooks you could hope to find!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Some Sunday Rides

A Raleigh 3 speed at the Swinburne Electric Bike Day

Projections onto the museum amidst a massive crowd at the free White Night Festival in Melbourne City

Electric Bike & Trike demo machines at Swinburne

Some electric skateboards at Swinboard.  The big board with suspension is a Baja Board

Sinclair Electric Velomobile at Swinburne.  This is a vintage machine circa 1984 obtained from the Canberra Cyle Museum.

Another iconic recumbent, a Wilson, in Richmond, Melbourne

Wilson bike in Richmond

Wilson bikes notice circa 2000 in the ozhpv magazine, Huff
Leaving for the 4k trip to the Epworth Hospital with a walking frame on board

Michael, Lisa, Izzy, Graham and Sruan on a B-Spon ride, near the Cow in a Tree

Testing a homemade electric trike on a St Kilda B-Spon ride.

Bikecentric living: bike in the loungeroom and carrying a large pro-hart print home from the op-shop.

Over the last few weeks I have been out and around on my bike quite a bit.  My wife Christine has been in hospital since January 4, and I've visited her in hospital almost every day.  Last week I managed to ride to work on 3 days and so I can cross off one of my bucket list items.  This was a "prospiracy" or set of events working in favour.  Tuesday I had to go to the dentist, (had to take the car, and Friday the car was being serviced (couldn't take the car).  So once I had ridden on Monday things sort of fell into a rythem and just ended up riding 3 days, 66k round trip each day.   On top of riding my bike to work, I'd normally add 8k's on the other weekdays by riding to the hospital to visit.

Anyway, during this time I managed to carry some reasonably bulky loads on the bike and these are shown in the photos.  There is a trick to this and it is called patience.
* Make sure you can carry the load before you head off.
* Don't carry any extra bulky stuff except for the big item you want to carry.
* Don't muck around on your trip, just get there at a conservative pace without unnecessary stops.

A few years ago I attempted to bring a glass framed picture home from the same op shop, but managed to break the glass along the way.  This experience (I got over it a long time ago) found its way the Cycling Board Game I devised.  This time I spotted the painting a week before I bought it but was in a hurry on that occasion and only bought it later when I had plenty of time and had checked it for size, that it would fit in my tailbox.

Peter Wilson was one of the early riders to join Ozhpv rides in Victoria and before too long he had rented a factory and was starting to make big, long wheelbase recumbents, cannabalising entire, new roadbikes in the process.  I don't think they ever sold that well but they had a bit of a following and you see one or two very occasionally.

The rest of the photos speak for themselves I think.  Happy Cycling!


Steve Nurse