Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Gelert Solo 1 man tent

 Now that my Peugeot touring bike is up and running I have started to get a few bits and pieces that are needed for going away on bicycle. I already have a pair of panniers and a sleeping bag so all I need is a tent, a sleeping mat and something to cook with. Well I can tick off the tent now, I bought a Gelert Solo 1 man tent off amazon. It is light (1.5kg) and cheap (£30). I though this tent was a good choice as I may end up not liking touring ( I doubt it) and are likely only to do short trips anyway. It had good reviews mostly but apparently I will need to keep an eye on the poles which are prone to splitting.

My Gelert Solo pitched for the first time in the garden. It was easy.
The tent was very easy to pitch really. You have to pitch the inner tent first though which could be a problem if it is raining I guess.

Inner tent of the Gelert Solo. The door is on the side.
You have to shimmy in sideways to get into the tent. Once in it is very 'cosy'. Well i think is cosy and not cramped as lots of people say, but i have not actually  camped in it yet. I think I should be able to fit panniers in with me and be pretty comfortable. You cant sit up but you can lean on your elbows on your side, which is a bit like sitting up. I will probably have an extra tarp for the door area and to cover my bike whilst sleeping to avoid mud and keep the bike dryish and out of sightish.

Rescue helicopter's view of my Gelert Solo
I'm looking forward to giving the tent a go and seeing what it is really like to sleep in someday soon. Maybe I'll cycle up to the Ogwen valley one evening and test it out over night. I'll post about how I find it.

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Peugeot tourer is now finished!

I have now finished the Peugeot touring bike build. From just having the frame, headset and forks and lots of odd bits, i'm really pleased with how it has turned out. It rides really nice, despite a collection of dodgy bearing cones in the hubs and bottom bracket. It is a really fun and enjoyable bike to ride and I can't wait to go on a trip with it. I have bought a one man tent (Gelert Solo) and just need a stove and a sleeping mat before I'm set to go.
The finished Peugeot touring bike! What a beauty.
 I managed to get these tan cane creek lever hoods to replace the Weinman ones that I did not have and could not find. They are not a perfect fit and I had to cut some of the rubber away to allow free movement of the lever when braking. They work fine and I would use them again as a replacement for old perished Weinmann hoods, I think they look good.
Cane Creek hoods on Weinmann levers

Most of the components on the bike are from the right period for the frame apart form the rear cantilever brakes which are shimano and the rear derailleur. I remember getting them changed when I was younger at the local bike shop, wish I had kept the originals!

One of the modern components of the build

Well, I look forward to my first tour which will be to south wales from Anglesey. I would like to replace the bottom bracket and axle cones when I have the time and funds. And to make the bike super cool it would be good to hunt down a pair of Weinamnn cantilevers for the back, white cable outers, new pedals, a Brooks B17 saddle, a 3rd bottle cage, a front rack and new freewheel as the current one is pretty dodgy sounding (looks bad too when taken apart but I'm in denial, it will keep going!). Just a short wish list.

Thursday, 5 May 2011

The Bickerton Portable

This is a great bike! It was my first proper refurbishment project. It belonged to a keen cyclist who took this bike round the world on the ships he worked on, and used it when in port. It was i n good condition but needed general cleaning, some new parts and I stripped down the Sturmey Archer AW 3-speed hub gear.
Bickerton portable partly stripped down
Serial number of the Bickerton portable

Stripping down the SA AW 3-speed. I bit of rust and old blobs of grease, otherwise in good condition.

Sturmey Archer AW 3-speed rebuilt cleaned, oiled and ready to go back in the hub shell.

Bickerton Wheels ready for tyres and tubes. Front is 14" rear is 16", very cool.

Folded by the door ready to go.

Bickerton Portable at Tregarth slate quarry on the Lon Las Ogwen.

Showing off the Bick

White Edible crab!

This is a picture of the white edible crab I had in my British native marine fish tank. Never seen a white one before or heard of anyone who has. It was great, until it grew really big and started eating everything and rearranging all the rocks in the tank every night. It is now living free in the Menai Strait. It turned brown again after a moult just before I put it back in the sea.

The amazing white edible crab (Cancer pagurus)