Saturday, January 31, 2009

Back in the saddle?

Well I reinflated the electric bike tire. I'm hoping that the sealant inside the tube will work its magic once I get it rolling again. It is virtually 100 percent complete; the only issue right now is that slow leak.

On another green-living front, my new Tersano Lotus is out of commission. It is not broken, but needs a new cartridge. It does not seem to work without the filter. Amazingly, it only took me a month to go through the first one. I have ordered a few at a price of about $4 each. I was really surprised I used it up so fast, but I have been using it often.

In some good news, a couple of my AeroGarden Mini (f/k/a AeroGarden 3) green beans have become productive denizens of this happy eco-shelter again. And a couple of cilantro and baby greens pods I started in my aquarium seem to be doing well in their new homes. And the outside herbs and peas are doing well.

It should be a pretty good year as far as the clean life goes. I won't have to buy things like terra-cotta pots again. With the sanitizer I should have more success making my own AeroGarden pods.

I am looking for a good AeroGarden medium. I have started things with green florists' stuff but I am leery . . . it is probably leaching chemicals or something. Cotton balls get moldy. Maybe I should just get some official AG plugs.

There is a hydroponics store in town but I haven't visited it yet. Their literature looks suspiciously psychedelic. Also, I should have checked the Targets after the holidays to see if any of their AeroGarden stuff was on clearance yet.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Black Bike :(

Replaced the front tube . . . this one is flat too . . . not as fast a leak . . . yet still my spirits are deflated . . . bloody Black Bike.

Other than that, it's about ready to go. I battened down the front cable with a super large Lizard Skin I chopped in half. It looks OK. Hopefully should stay intact.

How long has this dumb bike been offline? Since mid December? Sheesh. Really not looking forward to replacing another tube.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Rode Greybike

Rode the big gray bike to work today. In spite of the faintest, unexpected drizzle, which thankfully cleared up.

I got a bit overwarm on the big mother of a hill on the way in and had to stop and pack my overlarge parka into my rack bag (which is gray, like the tires). But other than that it was a decent little 2.3 mile trip.

Riding home was actually fun. It is mostly downhill, so I coasted a lot. After slogging around on battery-laden Black Bike for so long, I was surprized at how light and responsive Greybike is. I was really flying (but not up That Awful Hill). I continually refine my route, and found some main streets that were fairly deserted even in the heart of rush hour.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Electric bike 97% complete

I investigated the flat tire problem and found a fingernail-sized cut on the valve stem.

I bought a Lizard Skins chainstay protector for purely vanity/cosmetics reasons. However it gave me the idea of using one as a cabling organizer/protector for the wiring up front. I just ordered the super jumbo size, hoping it will be big enough.

The bike is looking pretty sharp. I haven't put the folding baskets back on it because they seem so heavy. With one severely bent rack and a broken rear spoke in the past year, I am wondering if adding groceries to the heavy batteries is just too much to ask. Maybe I should use it just for personal transport.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Failed yet again

Almost every time I trust my local bike shop (LBS), I am disappointed.

Brought the black bike in to get the front wheel trued after my clumsy re-spoking. Just knew they would screw something up.

I'm assuming they got the wheel trued OK. I don't know for sure because, now I have a flat tire. It went flat within two hours.

I'm just glad I didn't try to ride it home. What if I had had a blowout barrelling down the main drag in traffic?

I don't know why the tire is flat. I noticed the valve cap was missing in the store, but I didn't suspect this. What kind of jive-ass fix are they putting on it that it will go flat in two hours?

In all fairness, it's hard to work on a wheel when you can't really disassemble all the wired in stuff from my Wilderness computer brain, etc. It's also way heavy.

I don't know what's going on in the wheel, why it's flat. I'm too tired to check. I called to let them know. They said bring it in. I don't want to waste any more time, or risk any more damage. I hope they didn't fuck up my schweet new Schwalbe tires.

Bottom line: your LBS probably hasn't seen an electric bike before, and probably won't do such a great job. Possibly safer to do your own for maintenance, even basic bike stuff.