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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Just a Little Reminder About Supersized Cycles


Joan over at Supersized Cycles has a bike out for those of us who literally need a bombproof bike! It's called "The New Leaf", from Mint Cycles. It's a fully custom frame designed and stressed for the largest riders with a rated weight capacity of 550 pounds!

The bike specs out like this:







Specifications

Weight Limit

550 pounds

Brakes

Manufactured by Avid

9 Speed Gears

Manufactured by SRAM

Disc Wheelset

Manufactured by WTB

Switchblade Fork, Crankset, Stem, Seatpost, Handlebar, Tires, Pedals

Manufactured by Bontrager

Saddle

Manufactured by Serfas

Spokes

14 gauge straight stainless

Powdercoat Finish

Provides greater resistance to corrosion, better gloss, hardness and adhesion

Shipping Charges

$60.00 in the continental US, more for other locations. Contact us for exact figures.

Ships from Manufacturer

up to 4 months (it's worth the wait!)

Manufacturer

Mint

This is a heck of a bike! Drop by her site and check it out!

Supersized Cycles is also sponsoring me and my team in Tour de Cure, with $25.00 a bike sold up to the event on July 14.

I'm Offering a New Product at My Store: Share The Road

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It's a Share the Road T Shirt.
http://www.cafepress.com/cp/prod.aspx?p=TeamStormcrowe.136519448

Drop by and check it out! It's highly visible and kind of cool in a Freddish sort of way. All cyclists need high visibility and this can be seen a long way off

Monday, May 28, 2007

How to adapt a Standard Rear Rack for a Delta Recumbent Trike: SunEZ-3 for touring

It turned out a lot easier and cheaper than I thought! All it really took was a slight modification to an Avenir Rack.
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Materials:

2 shackle bolts
Avenir Rack
2 Grade 8 bolts, nuts and lockwashers.

Mount the down struts on the rack to the lower subframe basket mounts on the rear axle assembly. You will need to spread the rack stays to do this.

Mount the shackle bolts to the center tube on the seatback, bend the front mounts on the rack to match and twist the mounts 90ยบ so they can be slid over the lower bolt of the shackles

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Do any bending adjustments to assure as level a rack as possible, and then mount your bags. This will accommodate a trunk bag nicely as well as the Trek Basic Pannier set nicely

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After testing with a 25 pound load, it had no effect on how the trike handles and it had surprisingly good results. I'll be working on a better looking alternative to bending the forward mounting struts and will post them once I have it finalized.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

In Memory of Their Sacrifice

American Forces Press Service


Nation to Pause for 'Moment of Remembrance'
By Sgt. Sara Wood, USA
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, May 27, 2007 – People across the country will take a moment from their afternoons tomorrow to pause and honor the sacrifices of America's military.

Major League Baseball stadiums, NASCAR tracks, train stations, grocery stores, and even the astronauts on the International Space Station will be participating in the "Moment of Remembrance," which is observed every Memorial Day at 3 p.m.

"The national Moment of Remembrance is a time for Americans to contemplate those things that bind us together by remembering the legacy of those who died to better our country," Carmella LaSpada, executive director of the White House Commission on Remembrance, said in a news release. "We encourage all Americans, no matter where they are and what they are doing, at 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day, to stop and give thanks."

The Moment of Remembrance is an initiative of the White House Commission on Remembrance, which was established by Congress and made into public law in 2000. The commission encourages Americans to remember the sacrifices of fallen military members, as well as the families they leave behind. According to its mission statement, the commission "promotes acts of remembrance throughout the year and asks Americans to pay our debt of gratitude in memory of our fallen by giving something back to the nation."

The Moment of Remembrance, which lasts one minute, is being observed at the Liberty Bell and National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, the Empire State Building and Port Authority of New York, the USS New Jersey, USS Arizona and Greyhound stations. Additionally, volunteer buglers across the country will play "Taps" during the moment.

In his Memorial Day proclamation, President Bush will call on the citizens of the United States to participate in the Moment of Remembrance, according to the news release. Citizens can participate by observing a moment of silence, or doing something symbolic, like ringing a bell.


For we cyclists; as we ride tomorrow, remember to take a pause and reflect on those who have given their all to guarantee you your freedom to travel, cycle, and live as you choose to.

Friday, May 25, 2007

I've reopened my Storefront

I'm going to Give it another try here. I'm reopening the Team Stormcrowe Storefront with some T Shirts and other merchandise with some really nice fractal art and my surrealist photo of "Riding on the Moon". Feel free to visit and take a look around! The Banner above is the link! Proceeds will go to help me realize my cycling dreams, such as racing in Lotoja eventually. It's expensive and this is one way you can help! Consider it an alternative form of sponsorship of a man who wants to compete in the cycle racing world if you will!

Some Pics from our last ride!

The Wabash Heritage Trail is quite pretty this time of the year. We did a little 14 mile jaunt yesterday. I got a few pics, nothing spectacular, but I thought I'd share anyway!

This is actually a bike Lane on US 231 across the Wabash River to South River Road.
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Some Views around the Wabash Heritage Trail
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Thursday, May 24, 2007

Give Me Space! I'm a Road User TOO!

In one of my recent sojourns around town recently, I was nearly struck from behind approaching a traffic light. The signal was red, and I had taken the lane to prevent a right hook of myself and my wife. A Car behind us passed at nearly 40 mph and we were less than 50 feet from the red traffic light, did a close pass on my, the side of her car was about 4 inches from my handlebar mirror,cut a tire squalling right turn into the intersection, never even slowing down for the red light, nearly striking my wife in the process. This was one of my neighbors!

Is it just me, or are drivers getting more aggressive than usual? The close passes are getting more frequent. I'm thinking of putting video segments up from my rides, as a visual of what I'm talking about. I don't think I'm asking too much, for the space I need, to ride safely, am I? I might delay you 10 seconds if there isn't room to pass safely, and I'll move out of your was as soon as conditions allow me to do so safely.

The biggest need is for a bit of courtesy. I am not a loser who "Lost his license to a DUI", nor am I someone who "can't afford a car". I pay road tax and insurance on my car, and federal and state law protect my right to have access to the road while cycling. I follow the law as regards traffic safety when either driving or cycling. If I drive the speed limit, I am practically run over by drivers running 10-20 mph OVER the speed limit. When cycling, I can be riding AT the posted speed limit, near Columbian Park, as one example, where the posted speed limit is 25 mph, and cars seem to HAVE to pass me, often driving 40+ mph through the area. This is an area where children are present and also a school zone during the school year.

I also do long distance touring, and have ridden other states and cities. Lafayette, Indiana would have to get an F- as far as road courtesy. I've gotten more courtesy in Los Angeles, in either my car or on the bike! OK, rant over, but when you are driving around my town, in the near future, if you do a close pass on a cyclist, or endanger other drivers or cyclists.....well, don't be surprised if you make a guest appearance on the internet, courtesy of video!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Prokop Travesty! Cyclists set back by Prokop ruling.

Here is the article on the Prokop case out in Los Angeles County. It seems that Los Angeles is Immune! Since this is the case, then cyclists have to use any cycling facilities with due regard, even if they are constructed by a government agency.
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Here is a link to the article as posted on Metnews:
http://www.metnews.com/articles/2007/prok052207.htm

Here is a particularily pertinent extract from the article, under fair use:
Justice Paul Boland, writing for the Court of Appeal, said the trial judge was correct, noting that a series of cases have held that bike paths, both paved and unpaved, are trails and that absolute immunity applies as a result. In doing so, he rejected the argument that Farnham, which dealt with an accident on the Sepulveda Basin Bikeway along the perimeter of Balboa Park in the San Fernando Valley, should be overruled or distinguished.

Prokop’s expert insisted that the gate where the injury occurred does not comply with the criteria set out in the California Highway Design Manual, as required by the California Bicycle Transportation Act. But even if that is so, Boland explained, the immunity has not been waived because Government Code Sec. 815 makes clear that a statute granting immunity takes precedence over any enactment purporting to impose liability on a public entity. -Metnews Staff Writer

Sunday, May 20, 2007

A Great NPR Piece: A Four Mile Commute by Bicycle!

Weekend Edition Sunday, May 20, 2007 · Ah, the joy of a bike ride. Cool breeze, sun at your back.

But also narrow streets and rude drivers. Not to mention menacing dogs and murderous buses.

So why does anybody bike to work? There is an audio link to listen to the piece as well

More?

Check out this blog!

This is Eric von Zipper from Bike Forums. This lucky dog is commencing a 'round the world bike trip! I'm extremely jealous! Good fortune and safe travels and I'll certainly be following your progress!

Friday, May 18, 2007

Seth Margolies has completed his cross country ride!

Here is an excerpt of Seth's words about his cross country ride. I have to say, the words posted here are poignant and inspiring here. The trip has helped Seth redefine himself, in a good way!

I forgot to tell you that I made it to Tallahassee Florida last night. Not a fun biking town. I was feeling the pressure especially with the fires in the north of Florida. Guess where I am? I was determined to ride at least 100 miles. Still sick and the nerves upset my stomach so I could not eat. I smelled the smoke from the fires The ride early was tough because city riding is dangerous. There are nuts on the road. And I am not talking about the one you are reading about on a bike.The good thing about riding for distance is that no matter how bad road conditions are they will eventually change. I finally have become a smarter rider. I take the conditions as given and know they will change. I get up every morning and pray to the bike gods for a tail wind. No such luck. It was pleasant, not too hot but I haven’t had winds like this since West Texas. Remember that vast wasteland. Why are people in Florida so nasty to bicyclists? I have been cursed more times. What should I expect from the land of hanging chads? I have to be nice my mom lives here as well as my dear friend Jon. Jon is going through a rough time right now so if you can say a little prayer it would be appreciated. He is a good man and a great friend for nearly thirty years. He was suppose to be at the finale. I know he will be with me in spirit.. I battled today on the rode and earned every inch. YESSSSSSSS I was chased by a dog but he seemed friendly enough. What will I do when I am stopped being chased by dogs. I rode past three different correctional institutes. I did however worry when I passed a sign. “Warning Inmates Working on the Side of the Road” I pedaled harder and faster. I got a few too many smiles. My glutes and quads were aching. I burned 4300 calories and rode 106 miles. I ended up in Lakeside Florida five miles away from the FIRES. The Motel was full of firepeople from all over the state. All my respect they truly are brave.

5-16-07 I am determined to finish today. I got up early to have breakfast at the Waffle House. Laprell slept in. I met a correctional officer who was also a cyclist. He pulled out his atlas and gave me a nicer quicker ride to St Augustine. I was going to do 95 miles instead of 111. The road was pleasant. I guess my prayer of ever getting a tail wind on this trip was not going to happen. It was hot and smoky. I was feeling a little better but my muscles ached. I was doing 90-100 miles everyday for the last 8 days. I spent a lot of time on the phone. It looks like I have some press to do in Jacksonville and the official ending at Flagler hospital will be at around 1pm. A big bug splatted on my glasses and as I wiped it off I lost control and took a spill off the side of the road. Luckily I did not get hurt. FOCUS MARGO only 29 miles to go. The bike gods were not going to make this an easy 29 miles. Every obstacle that I faced for the last 3000 miles were creeping into this part of the ride. I went over a bridge and the traffic was heavy. Very little room for a cyclist and it brought memories of the Queens Creek Tunnel. Nothing and I made nothing was going to scare me. I had my game face on and I was focused. My friend Elizabeth S from drama school sent me old acting exercises to stay focused. Then the wind hit hard and I mean hard. I was fighting. And then you guessed it a DOG but this one was coming for blood. My heart was pounding and his teeth was showing. “If I had a Rocket Launcher” Bruce Coburn says “ I’d blow that SOB away” I was angry So I got off the bike and like Rocky himself said ”come on. You want a piece of this? NOT TODAY NOT NOW” And I chased the dog and told him if he came after my bike again I would feed him to the predatory birds that have followed me from New Mexico. The traffic started to get heavy. Laprell thought I should stop. NO WAY I am riding in head high into St. Augustine. No fire, no dog, no weather was going to stop me doing this. My mind was made up. Im going home. Back to my Atlantic Ocean. And so I did. We got to the sign and shot pics. I raised my bike over my head with pride. I did it. I said I was going to and I did. Now I need to prepare myself to run a marathon a month. My friend Tony wrote me and I want to share it because it touched me he said”….. you experiences will be the memories of a lifetime. Ultimately you will have the pride in accomplishment as the memories fade.” No one can take it away from me I set out to change the way people think and the person who changed the most was me. I am a better cyclist, smarter, braver, more humble, more focused, more determined. I hope to be a better son, lover and friend. In fact I know I will be. I started this trip with a broken heart and spirit and I am ending rebuilt more invigorated, more positive than ever before. The letters from friends and strangers have inspired me to go further and do more. I have learned to love me. I am no longer the 406 lb man. I am strong confident and deserving. I worked hard for it and I have earned it. The story just begins here. And don’t worry there is still press and the big finale so you will get at least one more. I hope today to reflect by the ocean soak up the memories and…….continue my journey. Thanks for reading.

-Seth Margolies, by email

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

some photos from the UP as a game!

Temporarily Home

The cold weather got Mrs Stormcrowe, she got sick, so we're home temporarily. I'll be heading back up to the UP in two weeks to resume the tour, but solo. The wife isn't up to it yet! More later and I'll have pics up sometime tomorrow!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Short post: Riding a bicycle to Paradise! (Michigan)

http://www.gmap-pedometer.com/?r=951297

Above was our route over the weekend.

Our route tomorrow! The Bike tour commences. No more internet for a few days, see ya later!

http://www.gmap-pedometer.com/?r=951736

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Guess What, I have some internet access!

We arrived yesterday in St Ignace, Michigan and we are at the hotel, prepping for the tour! The room is great and they are storing the van for me while we ride. Short post today, as I don't want to tie up the hotels computer today, but as I can, I'll post our progress as well!

I'll catch you all later, we're going to Macinac Island in a few minutes!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Gone Bicycle Touring: Pre-tour musings

As I write this, I have to ponder the enormity of what we are doing! I am taking a first time Bicycle tourist on a 720 mile unsupported bike tour! Is that crazy, or what? Below is an approximation of our route, with stops at various towns and State Parks. We'll be doing fundraising for Tour de Cure as well, while we are on the tour, so wish us luck. Whether we collect a penny or not though, this will be a great adventure as well as a mental test!

I don't know whether I'll have internet access or not (and I'm not taking a computer!), and only have minimal cell service, with three little spots on the UP of Michigan where we even have phone service with the cells. We're going to be more or less off the net entirely for a month.

Our Route (As close as I can approximate it!)

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Towns I know we'll be stopping in are
  • St Ignace
  • Paradise
  • Munising
  • Marquette
  • Houghton
  • Copper Harbor
  • Iron Mountain
  • Escanaba
  • Manistique
We'll be gone a month or so, so we'll see you when we get back, with a pocket full of stories and a camera stuffed with pictures!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

It looks like I'm packing for an Expedition!: The gear for a month long bike tour into the wilds of Northern Michigan!

Man, a lot goes into planning a major bike tour! I've seen smaller equipment lists for a military unit! Here's the equipment list, and I can't really think of anything on the list we won't potentially need.
3 man tent
12 extra tent pegs, ultra light weight
Tarp (Bike cover, cook shack, etc, emergency shelter)
150' in three 50' lengths Cord for hanging food, reinforcing tent in bad weather, clothesline etc (Bear Country)
Bear Spray
Advanced First Aid kit, including suture kit (Yes, I know how to use it)
glucose tabs and Ghu
ibuprofen
biodegradable cam soap
Wet Wipes
Deep Wood Off
SPF 50 sunscreen (Wife is a pale skinned redhead!)
2 sleeping bags (O degree rated, ventable for warmer weather)
Sleeping Pads (closed cell)
Stove and extra canned fuel
Cook kit and utensils
Freeze dried and nonperishable light weight food for several days
2 rain pants, 2 ponchos
6 water bottles
Small light hand ax
Ti entrenching tool, light weight

Clothing, Me:
2 shorts, padded
Knickers, padded
2 sets, Tights
3 jersey's
3 underarmor shirts
Cold weather fleece, Quarter Zip and windproof shell
camp shoes (Crocs, really light weight)
1 pr camp shorts
4 pr socks (merino wool)
1 pr touring gloves and 1 pr full finger warm cycling gloves
Ear warmer (It does get cold up there still)


Wife: Clothing
3 shorts
3 shirts
2 pr long shell pants, wicking
4 pr socks (merino wool)
Crocs
Fleece and windproof shell
Reg touring gloves and cold weather as well
Ear Warmer


Bikes:
Schwinn Passage touring bike

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Sun Recumbent trike

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trailer for gear (Not pictured)

Locks (3, both bikes AND trailer, from Kryptonite)
basic emergency multitool and 2 adjustable wrenches
4 power links
chain break tool
extra tubes
patch kit
Pump
waterproof matches
duct tape
zip ties
fiber spoke for my bike
lights, front and rear LED, battery powered

cell phone
digital camera
a few extra batteries

We are going to be in some remote areas and are going to be gone for a month. When the weather completely breaks, we'll mail the cold weather clothes home.

OTHER NEWS: I Started a Forum
I started a new forum, dedicated to the Clydesdale Cyclist. It's hosted on Network 54. Let's develop it into a resource for us Clyde's and Athena's. Membership is free so join up today!

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Tour de Cure Update: Michigan Fundraising Effort

Team Stormcrowe has raised $870.00 to date, not counting the eventual contribution from Supersized Cycles, one of my sponsors, because frankly, we don't know the final tally for them yet. Joan Denizot, over at Supersized Cycles has pledged $25.00 for each bike sold up til the event.Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Holland, Michigan

We are also going to be attempting to raise funds while we are on tour up on the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, with 100% of the funds collected being sent on to the American Diabetes Association. No administrative take out of expenses deducted, it will be 100% of the gross. We're paying our expenses ourselves.

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