Now Is The Time…

Finally, I am now reporting on the 3 areas below that I said would on 11/16.

  1. Stable:

    Here it is. This is the former utility room that now has 4 bikes and some bike stuff in it. On the stable’s back wall, I have 2 DFs [my MTB at the top and road bike at the bottom]. On the left is my Velokraft VK2 and my RANS Stratus XP is on the right. My biking tools and air compressor are also in the stable. I have a small electric heater and a radio to make life more enjoyable when working in the stable. There is not a lot of room; but, using this space is much better than having 4 bikes in the house. I do have a special space for biking gear where I had the 2 DFs stored, but had the bents elsewhere in the house. This works much better for me.

    Time and temperature are convenient information also available in the stable. The ladders are better stored in the stable [former utility rom] than elsewhere on the property. After all, they were there first–they have rights!

  2. Scale:

  3. Just over 2 months ago VikB, a BROL member, said: Wow! I checked out your blog – you don’t fool around outfitting a bike. How much does the full bike weigh? I responded by saying: Thanks! I am not sure on the weight at the moment. I know the bike is much lighter than on my Florida Tour. I know I can go up most hills without using the granny gear and I can really make the bike scoot. My focus has been on safe night riding and information availability over extended hours. Setting up bikes is a lot of fun for me. Since then, I have been thinking about the best way to weigh this bike. During my recent tour to Richmond, Virginia, and in consultation with my son, I arrived at a platform scale of some type rather than lifting the bike. Rather than buy a scale [that would set the scale to zero after the tare weight is determined], I decided to use a floor scale that I’ve had for several years. I built a platform to accommodate the bike. It is 101.5″x20″ before I added the vinyl covering and rails. I purchased the materials from Lowes. I have to add on additional metal rail section on the right front. I also built a ramp that makes it easier to place the bike on the scale.

    Here, the ramp is removed and you can see how the platform rest on the floor scale.

    The base is made of 2×4’s with 5 cross braces. The tare weight is 60 lbs.

    So, how much does the thing weigh??? The scale shows 130 lbs, less the tare weight of 60 lbs = 70 lbs. A stripped SXP should weigh ~31.5 lbs. I did not weigh this bike before adding components. I’d say the basic bike [w/disc brakes, 3-way chopper bar, pedals, and Specialized tires] is near 35 lbs. As weighed, the bike is near fully loaded, batteries & water, etc. For touring, I have my laptop, clothing, some food, and battery chargers. I won’t guess at the touring weight because the bike is actually a bit heavier than I would have guessed. On the other hand, it is not difficult to make it scoot or climb hills. My touring average speed is slower than I’d like it to be, but in line with my research on average touring speed [10-12 mph avg. moving speed]. This is consistent with my 3 long tours, yet I can see speeds of over 35 mph as I go downhill. While, I’m content with my setup, I still look for ways to save weight. I welcome your comments. Thanks!

  4. Equipment repositioning:

I’ve made a few additional adjustments to the RANS:

  1. I moved my XM radio from the top tube, just in front of the seat to the handlebar. There it is protected from rain and is less likely to come out of its cradle as it did in Petersburg, VA on my return ride to Fayetteville;
  2. I collocated the 2 Garmin Edge 305 GPS. Not that I need two, but as explained earlier in this blog, I can have statute and metric readouts; I can read the screen much better at this distance from my eyes; and I have redundancy. This saved me twice on most recent Fay-Richmond-Fay tour.
  3. For now, I’ve mounted my Bluetooth headset on the right side of the handlebar. I will soon test this location to see how it works while riding. Preliminary test are positive. I may relocate the earpiece. I did this to avoid having the headset on my glasses/helmet when I do not want to use it or have to remove it and then put it back when I want to use it.
  4. I repositioned the light behind the neck rest.
  5. And also repositioned the safety flag.

Although I took the photographs of the scale, platform, and SXP beneath my carport, I have placed the scale & its platform inside the stable. There it is protected from weather, ultraviolet radiation, and the possibility, although remote, of theft. The SXP sleeps on the weighing device. If needed, I can move them outside. BTW, I’ll also use this setup to weigh the VK2. To weigh my road bike and MTB, I use my hanging scale.