5 April 2009

Don't drink the water...

Visited a fort (too far for a Yuba ride unfortunatley) with the family this morning. Took the tour with a bunch of OAPs who were surprised by the kid's antics and NOISE as we were shown around the place.
I was more marked by the comment on the extensive works being carried out about the place. We we told " At the moment we are in works because we are not connected to the public water supply. For hundreds of years the fort has relied on the natural spring that runs through the foundations of the fort. Last year the health authorities informed us that because of the levels of pesticides present in our water we are no longer allowed to use it or supply in to the general public."
I listened to that and looked out across the nearby fields and beautifull rolling countryside and wondered why they didn't just tell the farmers to stop spraying rather than spend millions putting in pipes to a historical building if it was such a health hasard. How has this become acceptable... nobody said anything, or even looked bothered.
Took the kids to the park on the Yuba this afternoon and then for a spin in the countryside near home. Could feel yesterday's ride a little in the legs, but nothing too heavy. Everything on the bike is still shiney new. Gears crisp, brakes firm, new tire hum. Mmmmmm.


  1. Hi Jim,

    Good to hear that you are happy with your bike.
    Kids seem to be having fun. Check out for making seats:

    Can you tell me more about the problem you had fitting the rear wheel? What was too narrow, the frame for the hub?

  2. Great to hear from you Ben.

    Yes the frame was really tight. About 2mm too narrow for the hub. I had to apply light force to lever the chainstays appart with my foot and pulling with a hand on another so I could slide the axel into the axel slots in the dropouts. Otherwise the hub on one side would jam on the bottom of the frame dropouts and the axel would not go into the slots. I had seen this previously on the blog of an English guy who got his wheel in by kicking it ! Not a big deal on a steel frame anyway.

    Spoke tension is a bit slack too and I expect to retension by the end of the week. I can build wheels, have a wheel stand and tension measuring tool, but it will be the first time I have a wheel with that many spokes on it though !
    The foot bar was not formed exactly to the right shape (not a perfect fit) and the ends were pulled into the rear U blocks on tightening. The bolts where just long enough to enable the nuts to go on for tightening as the bar ends were askew in the U blocks keeping them apart.
    The rear rack also had a ding (in the factory as I can't see how it could have happened in the box)and is bent slightly in the middle going downwards as you go towards the front of the bike. Not a big deal still fits OK, will not affect strength and next time I have the rack off I will pull the front back up so the top is flat.

    As an ex auto engineer having worked in metal forming and chassis build I thought I would give you a list of the niggles I came across as I find feedback on my parts usefull. Again nothing major, and this is a fantastic product.

    I also saw that the 30's style platic chaingard has gone, there was no manual (not a problem for me)and my bike was different from the manual on your website. I was also expecting a kickstand for some reason, but I had a spare one in the shed.

    Again, thanks, I had a great time putting it together and this is a great bike !