A Day to Relax and Reflect…

As the sun sinks slowly into the west
At the Request of Mr. David Bascombe and for us all
Entertainers & The Crowd
Mallory Square Sunset Celebrations Day02

This is a collage of the Flickr images above.
At Smathers Beach, Along South Roosevelt Blvd.

My morning begins with thanks and praise to be here. It was a treacherous journey. Here are pictures of a few of the sights as I walked around early this morning. Enjoy!

A morning in Key West, Florida
As with all the photographs, click to enlarge–you should then have a enlarge botton in your browser that will enlarge again.

To come later today, I hope, will be a Google Earth tour of our journey from start-to-finish with pictures along the route. Stay tuned…

REFLECTIONS

I am glad I decided to do this tour. I thought last year as I listened to Mark discuss his tour from Fayetteville to Jupiter, Florida that I’d want to do that. This year he said he would go from Fayetteville to Key West, Florida. I was interested. Since four C4 members [Mark, Tom, Chris and I] did the post-Thanksgiving tour to Oak Island, North Carolina last year, I felt we [Mark and I] would enjoy the ride together—more on this later.

Anyway, given that I rode my Trek Project One to Oak Island, with a wider seat containing a gel-pad, I felt it was not the best “tool” for a tour to Florida. I made the decision I would go on this tour and thereby decided to purchase the best tool for me for the tour—The RANS Stratus XP. You are not supposed to buy a recumbent unless you have test ridden it. This is my second recumbent purchase without first test riding. There’s no recumbent dealer in Fayetteville or surrounding city. Some perspective buyers fly to a location where they can ride. That was not an option for me. I bought both of my recumbents from Dana Lieberman, owner, Bent Up Cycles in Van Nuys, California. Dana and I discussed in detail what I wanted to do and the bike that would likely be the best bike for me. I do not regret the decision on either bike. For me it is a matter of the right tool for the job. I love having the flexibility of choosing.

Back to touring: After getting the RANS, I knew I needed to test ride for some distance—why not Richmond, Virginia. My son and family live there and it is only about 200 miles—a double century (321.9 kms) [actually 218 miles (350.8 kms)and 20 hours later]. So what if I just bought the bike. I need “bent” legs [they are different—quads, gluts, and some other muscles that you do not know you have]. Bent riding is supposed to be good cross-training for DF [diamond frame] riding. So I head out early on Saturday morning [below in the blog, you can read about it] and 3 days later I’m back in Fayetteville. WOW!

I set goals. I know they are achievable, particularly when one sets tasks that support goal accomplishment. Some of you may know I am an Army Ranger. I know from that experience, I can do anything. The question becomes how. I strongly believe you JUST DO IT! Along the way, friends and their support make the tasks at hand easier. That was certainly the case on this ride.

That being said, what did I experience?

Bike – no mechanical problems [I love my RANS Stratus] I resolved a seat issue based on the Richmond, VA ride. I had three flats [I took 4 tubes]. I did not have to patch a tube. I used CO2 cartages. They were fine. I wore out a tire and replaced both. An experienced tourer, for the distance, would have carried a spare tire. I took one on the Oak Island tour. I thought I’d get more that 1,000 miles [1,609.3 kms] on the tire that came with the bike. I’ll tell you, coming off of some of these bridges at 35+ mph [56.3 kms]; you do not want a blowout. Going that speed is a real rush. The pain to get to the top is worth it. I’m lying. My generator cap that makes contact with the wheel needed to be replaced. I should have brought the spare—next time.

Safety: Lighting was adequate. Plan to ride in the dark, although you do not want to. I have a 2-system backup. I will install 3-system lighting. What do you do when you are on backup and it goes out 30 miles [48.3 kms]from your destination? That did not happen, but it could. Horn OK. Safety flags—I strongly recommend for all tours. Braking—more than adequate. I use disc brakes. We had several hours in down-pouring rain. Fayetteville, remember Alberto.

Cautions: If you are not comfortable or are easily intimidated by traffic, do not tour alone. Numbers help here. You will get blown at, yelled at; drivers will seem to force you off the road. I had a driver ask me if I knew I was in Georgia, meaning drivers don’t care about a cyclist right to the road. The most pleasant state to ride in happened to be North Carolina. I might say because of the roads there versus US17 or US 1, but I rode US 301 from Fay. To Richmond and return. In some instances, there will be no shoulder to ride on. In others you will have plenty, and in some states—GA & FL there will be some bike paths. There is one biker’s rule that works as best I know—TAKE THE LANE. If a driver behind you just blares his/her horn, wanting you to get off the road, take the lane and go slower. It forces them to use the passing lane to go around you. Mark uses this technique. I know it works. It would be nice if there were separate paths for cyclist away from cars and trucks—not the case for touring.

Fitness: If your tour includes bridges, you MUST have bridge-legs. Charleston, South Carolina Savannah and Brunswick, Georgia have bridges. Then there’s the multiple crossing on intercostals waterway bridges. There’re railroad bridges, there are river bridges. There are bumps in the road. When you legs have been working, they do not want another grade. I have strong climbing legs. I got to the point that I did not want to see another bridge; but, with adrenalin flowing, I attacked those *#%@ at a fast rpm and flew down the other side. Look at the GPS data. Condition yourself for the ride you are about to take. As a matter of practice, it is a good idea to included lots of hills in your riding regimen. Our cycling club, C4, gives you this opportunity on its Tuesday & Thursday ride on Ft. Bragg—attack those hills. Bents, by the way, are not known for their hill climbing ability. RPM is the way to get a bent up a hill fast. The Four Oaks area of NC along Highway 301 has some practice hills for you.

Hydration: I did not bonk or experience cramping. Ensure you remain hydrated. I may have over consumed—NOT. You can never drink too many fluids. Find the sports drink that works for you and use it. I drank lots of chocolate milk during the ride. I noted on my Bent Riders’ Forum, chocolate milk is an excellent recovery drink. I just did not wait until the end of the ride to drink it. I think it made a difference for me. You’ve got to ride long distance to know what works best for you. The tour is not the best place to learn what’s best for you.

Food: Your cells need to be feed. Read all you can on ultra cycling and then find what works for you. I generally eat something hourly. As this ride went on, I stretched the frequency that I ate something more and more as the ride went on. It seemed if I ate a meal, I was sleepy thereafter—the blood is at the stomach to facilitate the digestion of what you ate. You should eat breakfast early enough before your ride starts for the cells to receive the nutrients from what you ate.

Sleep: I did not get enough. I think you should get at least 6-8 hours sleep. Many nights, I did not go to sleep until after 2:00 a.m. [blog and all] and was awaked [by something—I’m staying positive here] at 5:30 or so. During the day’s ride at some point I drifted on the bike—not safe. I made more frequent stops trying to wake myself up. One half of the ride or the other seemed bad. Most times it was the second 50 miles [80.5 kms]. I remember one day, it took until 2:30 p.m. or so just to get to 50 miles [80.5 kms]. You just know you will complete the day’s task and hopefully exceed it. Life is short. Life is fun. Live it to the fullest.

Stretching: Dr. Tom tells me. I do as much as I can. I did have knee discomfort—so did Mark. I stretched my quads at all stops and did other general stretching. This is an important aspect of all the things we do. Maybe one day I can do Pilates or yoga. Tom, in the meantime, I stretch sir! I took along Naproxen Sodium and Ben Gay for the knees. They seemed to work for me.

Unexpected occurrences: On day 2 my riding glasses broke. I had backup glasses. They just did not look as cool; my kickstand broke in Charleston, South Carolina; I also lost my safety flag—no backup; and, my iPod stopped working properly–lots of skipping–for the remainder of the trip I listened to the noise of the wind. In Palm Beach, Florida, I lost my Bluetooth headset and my telephone stopped transmitting as a result of the many rains we had that day.

Wednesday afternoon on after checking into Holiday Inn at Key Largo, I rode several miles to complete the century, when I returned, I had my helmet and gloves. I placed the bike in the manager’s office, as I have been allowed to do. If the room is not on the ground floor, the bike does not make it to the room. Anyway, time to go and I cannot locate my helmet. I do not recall taking it to the room. I checked again, and it is not there. Hopefully on return to pick up my bags, I’ll have helmet and gloves. I do not ride without either of them. Yesterday I did. I fit right in. I did not see any other cyclist with helmet or gloves. This place is laid back.

Yesterday, on arrival at Key West, I bought a Nokia Tracfone to allow me to talk to individuals who dial my cell phone.

Essential for me: GPS—Garmin Edge 305; Digital Camera, Digital voice recorder; AirZound horn; & laptop computer.

Expectations: I look to have fun at most things I do. I expected this ride to fit in that category. In many ways it was one of the greater thrills of my life. I’d do it again in terms of setting goals that not too many of my peers would set for themselves and then accomplishing those goals.

My disappointment was the ridding “together” with my tour partner—Mark. I try to stay positive in my outlook and actions in life. To be honest with myself I have to express this. Mark knows I have concerns and disappointment. From my perspective, we had a contract as to ride speed, lodging, return, etc. On day one, on occasion, Mark and Chris would ride ahead and then wait.

Riding a bent is different than a road bike. I had suggested early on that Mark and I test ride together so that we know what to expect from each other and the bikes. That did not happen. I said to Mark that I felt I was holding him back, so he would just ride ahead. I will not be a burden on anyone. I will always finish and many times faster that one may think. I even offered that I should depart an hour or so before Mark so he could catch up pass and be happy. I was not getting sufficient rest as it was. Doing so would have made matters worst.

I heard him mention his ride rate to Chris on the phone. The rate he achieved were not consistent with the 12-13 mph [19.3-20.9 kms]stated when I considered this ride. As I see it, if you partner together and you are on a “tour.” You ride together.

It seemed there was to race to nowhere. I, seemed to be enriching my day with experinces along the way and still make reasonable time. I wondered why Mark would leave minutes before I did; or, if I rode into an area where he has stopped, he would ride off. He did not do this on day one. When asked, Mark said he was minimizing the amount on time on his Brooks Saddle because of discomfort riding for extended periods of time.

The upside to this is he arrived at the destination [which was sometimes beyond what I expected for that day]. Found lodging and checked in. I only had to get there. A key was waiting at the desk. Mark was kind enough to pay for lodging through our arrival in Key West and allow me to reimburse him with one check on our return to Fayetteville. I trust there are lessons to be learned here.

Depending on personal and team goals, you really need to know what to expect during the ride execution. I leave this ride happy that I met my personal goals, but saddened that it was not quite the team experience I expected—given our post Thanksgiving tour.

The important thing is we both arrive safely in Key West, Florida and now have to journey back to Fayetteville. Sometimes in life we are asked to do what may seem impossible. Sometimes we have to find a way in spite of what may seem to be an obstacle.

We both met some interesting people along the route, the trio from New York, people who would just come up and say, “you are doing WHAT“? On our first day of flats, 2 each, Mark help repair the flats of two other individuals.

I recommend a road tour for all cyclists. I want to organize and direct a tour for my cycling club. Given my 435 miler [700.1 kms] to Richmond, Virginia and now this 1,054 mile [1,696.2 kms] tour, I’d love to experience the joy that a group of riders with a common purpose share in the enrichment that cycling brings. Getting there is but one component of the event. What you do along the way I think is where the fun is to be had.

I hope to be with you along the road somewhere sometime.

Thanks for indulging in my reflections.

–jim artis

Comments & Impressions ~ FRF Tour 1

Training tour targets met & goals accomplished.

I‘ll tell you that experiencing these rides was invigorating. I think all serious cyclists should complete a double century in their life. I did mind at age 60. I was not waiting for anything in particular. Since I have the 1,000+ mile (1,609.3 kms) tour in June, I used this opportunity to train; visit my family in Richmond; check out my LWB recumbent the over extended miles; and evaluate the preparedness of this engine as well as increasing its fitness. I feel GREAT today. I do not recall sleeping as complete as I did last night in a long time. I’m really looking forward to our June tour.

The Bike: The RANS Stratus XP is the perfect tour bike for me. I do not see how there could be a better selection. It rides very well. I was able to give it sufficient power to climb hills. Mechanically, the bike is up to the task. I do have a concern. I found the RANS seat was not comfortable for my bottom with the many riding hours [20, 11, & 10 for the 3 days]. I think the foam pad does not eliminate the possibility of the pan, particularly from the back of the pan. On return, I spoke with Ronnie at RANS to see if there is an option that offers greater comfort. He says no. I will confer with Dana of Bent Up Cycles today. During my up to 50 mile (80.5 kms) rides, the seat seemed OK. Ronnie said seat discomfort has not been reported as a problem. It may be my bottom [a normal not that wide or big on a 168 lb. (76.2 kg.) man] and its interaction with the seat on extended rides. I really want to try something different before my 1,000+ mile (1,609 kms) tour. One other minor problem: The nylon idler/chain keeper broke in Petersburg, VA. My son fashioned a replacement keeper [reaming out a piece of nylon coat hanger] that got me back to Fayetteville and I think will take me for many more miles. Thanks Michael!

 

The Equipment:

  • Cargo Carriers: The Rans Panniers and the Streamline TailPack worked very well. The Chopper Bar Fairing Bag is the BOMB. It is very convenient.

 

  • Neck Rest: This is a welcomed addition to the bike and helpedwith my comfort during the long riding hours. I’m still tuning it in. I do have some tenderness at the base of my neck. I think it is from the rest. I do not know if it is the “support,” the fabric, or the position, relative to my riding positions.

 

  • Shoes: I rode with Lake Sandals. I think they were more comfortable than my Sidi MTB shoes would have been. I’m using SPD cleats. The bottom [next to the foot] of the Lakes was many times uncomfortable, kind of hot. I’ve read about this. I have to reread. I noted last evening that I have a small blister on the inside of my right great toe. I must have gotten it yesterday.

Safety:

  • Lighting: I rode I rode over 10 hours in the dark. The
    NiteRider Flight, with 16-LED tail light and the LightSpin dynamo, with 2 headlights and the Stand taillight are the perfect system for me. I used their dynamo powered lighting system along with the NiteRider as opposed to just emergency lighting, although it still serves that purpose. Caution: I began the tour with the NiteRider Flight on low-beam and used most of its battery by day-break. Given that I had 3 hours of night riding later in the day, I had no battery for the headlight. The dynamo powered lights did their job, except when I stopped, no headlight. I also used a CatEye white flasher at the top of my safety flag.

 

  • Safety Flag: I think it is essential for travel on public roads. Fortunately, I did not have any near-misses. A few jerks passed by too closely. Remember–put a light of some type at the top of the pole.

 

  • Horn: I use the AirZound. It is a GREAT horn, particularly at its low cost. I did not have to use it in traffic situations. I did use to when dogs started a pursuit. They all stopped. I had a count of AirZound 10, dogs 0, but; lost count after 20 or more encounters. I ran out of air [I need a larger reservoir–I replenished in Richmond] or I needed to use shorter blast. Had I not blown the horn, I do not know what the dogs would have done. I do not need to know that.
  • Handling: I rode over 3 hours in the rain–no unusual problems. Control and braking [disc] was adequate.

 

The people: Overall, my impression are positive, more so for my experiences in North Carolina versus Virginia. It seems some have never seen a recumbent. Many were complimentary on the RANS. As I rode through a small NC town on Sunday night, I even had someone yell obscenities from a porch. Some seemed to display the attitude that a bike did not belong on the highway. I found cars that passed me at night gave a total lane berth, whereas during daylight, some just moved over a few feet. My NC night travel was on the highway. My VA night travel was in north Petersburg on US 301 and US 1 and then VA 10. The US 301 and US 1 route was hilly, not what you want for a LWB recumbent. Over 50 years of cycling, this was my worst experience to date. Overall, I might conclude it is safer to ride a bike at night [with proper lighting of course] than during daylight. I’ll give the people an 80% positive vote.

The Engine: Although I’m working with a 60-year old body, I feel fit and up to the task. I think I have my “bent” legs already. Some say it takes time [6 months or so]. I think miles. I have near 600 miles (965.6 kms) in my short period of ownership. I had the pleasure [or displeasures] of riding many hills. I can spin rapidly and motor up the hill as fast as I want. Or, I can spin more slowly and just pedal, without mashing, to the top. I tend to not use the granny gear because of the LWB instability, particularly in traffic [and at night], add horn blowing and yelling passengers to that–well you get the idea. As I have read on BROL, my heart rate was about 20 bpm lower on this recumbent that on my DF. I’ll have to research more to determine why. My average speed on the bent was slower than my DF. I’m not sure I understand why. I know when touring, you should go more slowly because of the distance you will be riding. I also read on BROL to expect a 10-12 mph (16.1 – 19.3 kph) touring average for certain type of tours. I find that to be an accurate prediction.

Nutrition & Hydration: From my perspective, I apparently did it right. That is, my weight on return was within a mound of my departure weight. I did not bonk; although this was my first double century and I rode over 10 hours each day. I did nothing scientific in determining what to eat. I had bananas, raisins, chocolates, Gu, fig bars, pistachios, peanut butter, etc. I used Gator Aid as my sports drink because of its availability at gas stations. The foods are items that have worked for me in the past. For recovery, I also drank lots on no-fat chocolate milk last night.

Anomaly??? At the end of the day, after finally arriving at my Son’s home and conversing with he and his wife for a bit and then going into the garage, where the bike was parked, to get a few items, I suddenly felt dizzy, somewhat nauseas, and warm at the face. I’ve never experienced this before. It took an hour or so for the symptoms to go away. I drank more water and ate a bit. I’m not sure what that was about. I seem to have survived for 2 more days of riding and I think I’m OK now. We will see…

Plan for the FL Tour: Relax and enjoy the ride with the confidence [plus, I’m to have the added benefit of the Angletech Aerotrunk (tailbox)] that I can go at least 218 miles (350.8 kms) in a day and that I have strung together 3 days on centuries or more. I did 5 centuries last year [my first year of doing centuries]. I expect to more than triple that this year. Life is short. Enjoy it as much as possible.

Tidying up…

Almost Done!

I called Andrew, Yellow Jersey, on the StandLight problem. He explained that a plastic tab needs to be removed and the taillight only will remain lit. That is not what their website said. I said the taillight & headlight will remain lit. Anyway, they are fixing that. He has offered restitution for my time and trouble. By the way, I saw the plastic tab, but did not remove it because their were no instructions to do so.

Today:

  • Setup hydration system using a CamelBak bladder, their black insulated tubes, a bottle with a plastic straw for my sports drink. I plan to have a separate hydration system for the Angletech Aerotrunk to preclude a lot of changing as I set up the bike for different ride types.
  • Found a free orange safety flag at Hawley’s Bicycle World, Fayetteville, NC. Thanks Mark Taylor!
  • Out for a ride…

Later this week:

  • Mount NiteRider Flight Lighting System, including NiteRider Taillight.
  • Ride, RIDE, RIDE…

Nearing Setup End

The RANS spent most of the day at my LBS for front and rear deraillieur adjustment, so much of the day that I could not get in my 30-mile ride [or any ride for that matter]–SHUCKS! Anyway, the adjustment is done and tomorrow I must get some distance on this bike.

OK, here is what happened today:

  • Wired the Garmin speed sensor, connecting [soldered all connections and insulated with heat-shrink tubing] it to the cadence base.
  • [LBS] Reindexed Deraillieurs.
  • Covered the kickstand legs and the rear rack aluminum supports with black heat-shrink tubing.
  • Although the kickstand positioning is resolved, it slips. I’m trimming the black plastic brackets in hopes that will keep the stand in a fixed location. I wish there were a mounting point on the frame. After trimming, I used silicon to hopefully hold it in place. We will see…
  • Placed a safety flag pole anchor point on the RANS Streamline Tailpack.

I did not receive a call from Andrew of Yellow Jersey on the StandLight problem. I’ll call him tomorrow.

Tomorrow:

  • Setup hydration system
  • Try to find orange safety flag and triangle locally
  • Ride, RIDE, RIDE…

Later this week: [listed below as “Next Week”]

  • Get a mounting plate welded for the kickstand–OBE [not needed]
  • Mount NiteRider Flight Lighting System, including NiteRider Taillight. I’ll use the Universal Mounting Bracket on the head tube to mount the headlight. I expect the bracket and cable to arrive Wednesday or Thursday. I’ll use the Flight Headlight and battery from my Trek Project One DF.
  • Ride, RIDE, RIDE…

More Setup

Actions completed over the last 24-hours:

  • Installed Eggbeater Pedals.
  • Installed the mounting brackets for the front running/emergency lights and the lights. [I have a pair basta Ellipsoid Halogen Lights.]
  • Positioned the flag tube to the right side of the seat to allow for back packs.
  • Wired dynamo lighting system and tested it. It works; although, for some reason the lights do not remain lit when the dynamo stops spinning [they are suppose to remain lit for up to 2 minutes]. I called Yellow Jersey, my online retailer, to determine what distance must be ridden to charge the capacitor. My sales rep, Andrew, said blocks. He will test and let me know. I’m waiting for his call.

Actions to complete next:

  • Ride at least 30 miles per day this week to see what happens with these “bent muscles.”
  • Have the deraillieurs reindexed. I have just a bit of front and rear shifting problems.
  • Wire the Garmin speed sensor [I had to slip this task.]
  • Resolve the kickstand location issue. I selected the Pletscher Kickstand because of its stability and its support should I need do tire or gear work on the road.

As I see it, I have 3 kickstand options:

  1. I can live with the chain contact with the kickstand.
  2. Have a mounting plate fabricated and welded to the TerraCycle Easy Reacher Cross-Member and mount the kickstand to it.
  3. Use a standard kickstand that supports the bike from the left rear side.

OBSERVATION: My quads were called on a lot more than when riding my DF. I noted this as I did some check-riding in my neighborhood. I was to complete 30 miles on the XP today, but because of thunderstorms and other work requirements, I did not fit it in.

Setup Update

Actions completed over the last 24-hours:

  • Installed fenders [I had to compensate for the presence of disc brake on both wheels. The rear fender did not reach the kickstand as I thought it would. I modified the attachment point to use the top tube, attaching the fender with silicon. Attaching the fender as I did, I did not have to trim it for the dynamo. Rather, the dynamo makes contact with the tire just beneath the fender. ]
  • Established kickstand’s final location. I could not attach the Angletech rear fenders to the kickstand as expected. Further, any kickstand position I used results in the chain rubbing against it in the lowest gear. I intend to have a mounting plate for the kickstand welded to the TerraCycle Easy Reacher cross-member and mount it there.
  • Positioned Garmin speed sensor [required detaching it from the cadence base, as I did with my VK2 and mounting it on the fork].
  • Fashioned a flag mounting tube to attach to the seat-back.
  • Positioned and secured the dynamo stand-light to the rear rack.
  • Received the Crank Brothers Eggbeaters SL from Spin Cyclz.
  • Picked up mounting brackets for my running lights [powered by the dynamo]
  • Picked up chain cleaning/lube kit

As an aside, today I rode 54 miles (86.9 kms) on my Trek Project One DF.

Actions to complete next:

  • Install Eggbeater Pedals
  • Complete flag tube
  • Wire dynamo lighting system and test
  • Wire the Garmin speed sensor

Next week:

  • Get a mounting plate welded for the kickstand
  • Mount NiteRider Flight Lighting System, including NiteRider Taillight. I’ll use the Universal Mounting Bracket on the head tube to mount the headlight.

OBSERVATION: I can barely fit the LWB recumbent in the cargo area on my 1998 Ford Windstar. There does not appear to be an easy way to transport this bike.

Goodies!

These are the specifications as the Stratus XP was sold by Dana
The bike has been shipped from Bent Up Cycles as follows:

In addition, I purchased the following from Angletech, (The sales person, Kelvin, is the helpful person I’ve read about on BROL.):

  • an Aerotrunk (black)
  • a set of Techwinds Panniers (black)
  • an Angletech Custom Planet Bike based Fenderset, pre-prepped to fit my Stratus XP setup [the set includes a custom front fender made longer to preclude road debris blow back]

Safety:

  • Brakes: [included in bike purchase]: Of course disc brakes give additional stopping power should I find myself in wet or extended braking conditions.
  • Horn: I’ll install an AirZound Horn [as I have on my VK2].
  • Lights: I will use my Niterider Flight headlight and Lithium-Ion battery from my Trek Project One DF. I will purchase a dedicated 16-led taillight to keep from having to move the taillight from either my DF or VK2. For backup/redundancy, I’ll use a LightSpin Dynamo System from Yellow Jersey. I intend to use this system for running lights [2 headlights & a taillight] during daylight travel. Although dynamo powered, this system will continue to give light for up to 2-minutes during a stop. Our travel is to be during daylight. I’ll be prepared for emergencies, plus I’ll do other touring that will include riding during the hours of darkness.

    I’ll also carry a small LED light from Radio shack for night reading.

  • Mirrors: I’ll use a pair of Busch&Muller Cyclestar 901 Mirrors from Dana.
  • Other: I plan to use at least one safety flag and a safety triangle of some type, perhaps this one.

Miscellaneous:

  • Battery: Because of the 10-hour or less battery life of the Edge 305, I will use a lithium-ion unit to recharge [actually maintain charge] the GPS. The unit is a Socket Mobile Power Pack . In addition, I can use it to maintain charge on my cell-phone, etc. Worst case, I’ll have a second 305. If you want to know more regarding the Edge and battery life, see this thread at MotionBased Forum.
  • GPS: I use the Garmin Edge 305 with my DF, VK2, and MTB. I have a cadence sensor for each. The 305 provides profiles for up to 3 bikes. In this case, since this is a 4th bike and because I do not want to move a cadence sensor from one of my other 3 bikes, I decided to purchase a second Edge 305, with cadence sensor [which I would have had to purchase separately anyway [because I do not want to move one of the others, plus I can add 2 more bikes :-)]. The new 305 will be dedicated to the XP and be available as a backup GPS. For this tour, I’ll also take my original 305 as a backup GPS.
  • Pedals: Crank Brother Blue Spring Eggbeater SL [purchased from Spin Cyclz–Nanda].