Monday, November 30, 2009

It's The Amazing Magic Chain!

With Bob's permission I'm pasting his email to the Renegades following yesterday's ride.

"We had a fabulous ride on Sunday! We started out with three of us, Ori, Greg and I, at Lakeville and Northern. We picked up Billy early on the service road and did the usual Sunnyside Extension into West Hills via Sweet Hollow Road. Greg had teenage girls to transport back to the city by 11am, so he headed home at Stillwell after that. The three of us continued into Huntington Harbor, but then added Oyster Bay up Berry Hill to the 7 11 in Syosset. On the way home through the campus Billy and Ori stopped to fix Billy's front derailleur and I doubled back to meet up with them. Then back to Great Neck. I finished with 68 miles."

"A bit chilly at 8am, but really nice sunny clear day with very little wind. A great way to end the long weekend."

"Hope everybody else had a great holiday."

In terms of Billy's front derailleur issues, the strangest thing happened. Riding through the campus, as Bob mentioned, Billy dropped his chain while shifting to the small ring. Nothing out of the ordinary there. I kept riding but kept looking back to make sure he stayed with us. I kept slowing down and a minuted or two into it he still failed to show up. I decided to go back to see what the issue was. Turns out that his chain had inexplicably come out of the front derailleur cage. It sounds impossible, but there it was. The derailleur cage was completely intact and operational, yet the chain was outside of it. It must be a Houdini chain. We simply couldn't figure out how it came out and how to get it back in, except by opening the rear of the cage. It was a simple matter of removing the bolt and pulling out the end bracket. But once the chain was back on we just couldn't manage to put the bolt back in place with the tools we have, so we put away all the loose parts and Billy finished the ride in his small ring without any problem.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thanksgiving with the NSW

Even without turkey flavored energy gel Thanksgiving brought out BobL, Ori, DavidS, and Isaac for an NSW renegade event.

I believe it was left at the fourway? We headed towards Bayville but did a duckpond thing that put us on Feeks. Moore's Hill, Snake Hill, and back to Stillwell.
Before Snake Hill we met Scott and Steve.  Triangle guys who rode along with us untill Syosset.

I once read somewhere that you should expect to take some kind of fall off your bike every 2000 miles or so. On Thanksgiving I guess I clocked in my 2000 miles on Stillwell. No broken bones, no broken bike.  I do have a cool black and blue on my chest in the shape of my drops, including the brakes. I rode back to GN at slower than renegade pace.  Ori, David, and yes even BobL waited at various points for me to catch up.  I have a 5k cross country run in Stillwell woods on Sunday near the scene of the crash. I should ride again next week.

Bumpy, campus and home for turkey.

Windy: No Wheelmen In Sight

Nothing like a brisk fall breeze to scare everyone into cowering at home. (Buck, buck, BUUUUUCK!)

Rather than riding alone I decided to try my legs at hanging with the 8:30 triangle group. I waited for them at the corner of Wheatley. A small group – only half a dozen – rode by just before 9:00 and I joined in. By the time we reached Woodbury Road the group had grown to about 20 or so. It included two women and a scrawny teenager. I wouldn't be surprised if the latter were to go pro in the future. They can all kick our sorry butts without breaking a sweat.

A number of them were sporting matching "Triangle Cyclists" kits. Turns out they have a web site with a fancy video intro that looks way better than the rest of their home page.

I can hang with this group on the flats and the downs without burying myself, but I tend to drop off the back every time they hit a climb and, competitive as they are, start hammering. This happened a few times over the next hour, on the LIE, Stillwell and bumpy. Every time I pushed as hard as I could just to keep them in sight and managed to catch up whenever they slowed down for a light or at an intersection. After bumpy we hung a right at the white church. By the time they started charging up Chicken Valley Road I had nothing left and lost them completely.

Found myself by the moving and storage, spent, and decided to finish my ride by covering some of my favorite routes: duck pond, Horseshoe, Sandy Hill, back through bumpy and white church, then Wheatley and LIE back home. Whenever I didn't have the benefit of a tailwind I had to drop to my small ring just to keep moving along at an easy pace. Eventually I made it home.

Somewhere during my struggle to hang with the group I lost my computer (must have knocked it off its shoe with my bottle), so I don't know my overall average, but I was able to figure out my mileage to 55 for the day by using Google Maps.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Sunday 11/22 The Buddy System

Again the weather cooperated and the NSW and North Shore Uniwheelman were on the road.

BobL, Ori, Isaac, and JeffK set out to the Sunnyside extension.  BobL and Ori rode with the renegade banner and Isaac and JeffK pulled up the rear.  The renegades added Snake Hill and both groups continued on Stillwell. Refer to previous posts to see who the uniwheelman was.

There is talk about four days of Thanksgiving riding. Start times and locations are the same.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Where was your bike made?

Kudos to DavidS for finding this.

Interesting article; “Where Was My Bike Made?”

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Sunday 11/15 - Wetter than expected.

Does a North Shore Wheelman on a Unicycle count towards the days total riders? I say if he is wearing a NSW jersey then he counts.

Amos, that is one big wheel!

Also riding today were JeffK, Alan, BobL, Ori, Billy, Joe, Larry, and Isaac.  JeffK, Alan  and Joe went short.

Renegades went long with Larry leaving early. This became a theme for the rest of the ride. After sunnyside,Snake Hill, and Moore's, we lost Billy.  He did a Barry and missed Sandy Hill.  I actually do take a bit of blame for this as I was lagging behind.  Billy stayed with me for a while.  When we lost contact  or should I say when I lagged even farther behind is when he likely missed the turn. I did not see him and he at that point could see Bob and Ori. A newbie mistake.

A possible reason for my slow going might have been the flat in my front tire that I was riding on from possibly Moore's till Syosset 7/11.  Oddly it only felt wrong when I got out of the saddle. Another possible reason could be my lack of indoor work this week coupled with 2 hours of  full court basketball. Yeah I did some running too this week. Maybe too much cross training.  (I am pleased that I do have a forum to present my excuses,even though Ori, who already knows them, and I might be the only people reading this.)

A recent post by Ori showed the fastest flat fix/tube change on youtube. It was sad that we had no video camera as this might have been the slowest flat repair. After BobL left Syosset ahead of us, I began to change my tube.  Lesson learned, never forget to check the inside of your tire for what may have blown the tube in the first place. I did not. Thus the new tube was punctured.
I had a patch kit!  That smelly stuff that comes in a tube for the patch was all dry.  Ori gave me a slime instant patch, which would have worked but the fiberglass spike that had punctured the tube had made two holes. The patched tube went on then came out.
I thanked Ori for the tube he gave me and we were finally on our way.

JeffB did not ride but showed up at 8:00 to offer us his wet weather benediction. Something he learned on his Israel ride.  The sun did eventually come out as we left Syosset. 

Bumpy, White Church, and Wheatly.  Ori thinks It was about 60 Miles.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Justice Served?

Here's the latest on the trial of an aggressive motorist in California. It's worth reading. It's not that extreme a case. I can certainly see it happen anywhere.

If you can't click on this URL, copy it and paste it in your browser's link window.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

JeffB in Israel

For those interested in how the ALYN Wheels of Love ride went - here's a brief recap: 
- We had three days of absolutely miserable weather to start.  It never rains here.  Water is a precious commodity.  But last week we had torrential downpours, together with thunder and lightning, strong winds, and on the first day, we even had hail.  Yes, you read that right.  I'll spare you the rest of the whining (for now.) 

I ended up getting sick with a fever and other assorted ills, which put a serious crimp in my riding for days 3 and 4.  The weather cleared for days 4 and 5, and eventually, so did I. 

The ride - as always - was difficult and challenging, but also breath-taking, inspirational and emotional.   To those who have supported me in this cause, I thank you so very much.

Hope the weather in New York holds up for at least another week.  Hope to see you all soon.

Best regards,
Jeff B

Sunday 11/8

Cool weather = cool ride

The 8:00 am start brought out seven wheelmen, five of them renegades.
Herb, JeffK, BobL, Greg, Ori, Barry,and Isaac enjoyed a cool start and a warm finish.  Herb and JeffK went short.

Renegades went long, as if that was a surprise.  Joining the renegades was BillyE, a triangle refugee who's company we enjoyed.

Of note was the seven pounds of cold weather gear Barry was wearing. Yes he did weigh his gear when he got home. The total weight of his gear related directly to the length of his excuse for his slow pace. Barry also missed the Sandy Hill turn. Again due to his balaclava.

The route for the renegades was sunnyside, Snake Hill, Moore's Hill, Sandy Hill, the Bumpy, Campus and home.

This was how we looked before the caffeine kicked in.

I do not see what was wrong with this picture but then again I was not in it. I am somehow reminded of the people that used to sit in front of the hotels in South Miami Beach before it became South Beach.

Total miles 62.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Sunday 11/1 The Rain Delay and the Wheelman

If you did not go out last week you missed a rare sighting of Amos on his unicycle. I did not know his wheel was so big!

The wet roads pushed off start times for the Renegades to 9:30. BobL, Ori, Arthur, Isaac, and Greg did a Sunnyside, Snake Hill, Campus ride.  Isaac dropped out early at Stillwell, I had curfew issues.

To see the ride info go to:

Friday, November 6, 2009

New Start Times

This just in.

After careful and protracted deliberation, the NSW High Council unofficially let it be known that the new start times, effective Sunday, November 8, 2009 are 8:00 AM in Great Neck and 8:30 AM at Wheatley/LIE.

As far as I can tell, renegades are still tolerated.