Both Andre and Denise have been long time fans but for years and years but I shunned the Toronto made and designed YNOT pedal straps because I thought they were so thick and industrial looking. For some reason I didn’t find them aesthetically appealing at all.
But after having ridden a bike with step-in pedals, I really missed the power gains from pulling up on the pedal when you have foot retention. So slowly, I started to see how YNOTs were a great alternative to step-in pedals. Plus you can wear your regular shoes because the velcro system of the YNOTs make them really easy to adjust the straps to any shoes you are wearing for a perfect fit.
I had to purchase new BMX style pedals so I could slip the YNOT straps through. And tada! I can go faster on my bike!
Now I’m a convert and YNOT evangelist.
PS – YNOT is hiring!
PPS – The weather for tomorrow’s Ice Cream Sandwich ride isn’t looking too promising. We’ll update everyone whether we’ll be riding tomorrow.
My very elegant, Copenhagen Dual-leg kickstand by Velo Orange, purchased from HoopDriver has been installed.
What makes this kickstand so special is that when it is retracted, the two legs fold together to one side which makes it very compact when not in use.
I really love it!
Here I am in my winter riding uniform! This is what I usually wear when the temperatures are between 5°C to -8°C-ish. When it’s colder, I switch up my coat to a longer parka.
• a wool coat with quilted lining
• jeans with leggings underneath
• shoes with socks doubled-up
• leather gloves
• helmet with winter lining (that has ear flaps)
I usually warm up quite quickly after I start riding, so under my coat I’m usually wearing a cardigan and a short-sleeved shirt. If I were walking leisurely, these layers would not be enough. I would definitely be wearing a wool sweater to keep warm!
Do you have a ‘uniform’ for riding in colder weather?
All the nice parts from my old grocery getter has been transferred over and now my Raleigh Grand Prix is road ready!
The inaugural ride was, appropriately, to a Ward Advocacy Group meeting for Cycle Toronto (more on this soon!).
The frame of this bike is a bit heavier than the previous grocery getter, however the geometry isn’t as aggressive so it’s definitely a more stable ride.
The last thing I have to figure out is what to do with my lock. Before, I had the lock holder on the seat stay tube, but now the mixte top tubes get in the way of being able to mount it there. For now the lock stays in the basket, but it gets really rattly and annoying.
Maybe it’s time to retire this Igor Kenk lock and get a smaller, sleeker one.
In any case, in addition to the mild temperatures I hope the weather is dry this weekend. I want to ride!
A moustache handlebar and some cool vintage looking Diacomp brake levers that I bought at Hoopdriver.
The brake levers were a personal recommendation from Martin, the owner of Hoopdriver. You can see it in action here.
Unlike the bike from the Hoopdriver gallery, I’m going to have handlebar tape at the ends instead of leather grips (I wish!). Plus I’m not cool enough to ride with just one brake!
The new bike is slowly coming together!!!
Ever since my front fork got damaged at the Mini Drome practice session, I’ve been in a sort of bike funk. Riding around a wobbly bike is not fun.
So for Christmas Andre, knowing my love for vintage bikes, went on a mission to find a vintage mixte for me to replace my wobbly grocery getter.
His mission was successful and he presented it to me for Christmas!
And check it out, it’s in pristine condition:
Andre went out to Oshawa to purchase it from a man who’s wife wanted to get into bikes, but only rode it a handful of times and then stored it in their basement for the past 25 years. The bike has never seen rain! It has all the original parts, down to the brake and shifter cable housing.
Isn’t it amazing?
Look! The old school ‘lego’ brake pads still have full tread!
Unfortunately, the bike’s ‘vintagey-ness’ is it’s downfall. Despite being a road bike the frame is a bit heavier than the frame of my current grocery-getter. Plus the bike is more of a middle of the road model, so the old steel components on this bike add a lot of weight. This makes the ride pretty smooth, but man, it makes for a heavy bike.
So now the bike is stripped of parts and will get a lot of the parts from the grocery getter transferred over.
Can’t wait to ride this new-old bike soon and christen it with a ride to go do groceries!
Good-bye grocery getter!! Thank you for being an amazing ride (until this September) and I’ll never forget all the adventures we had together for the past three and a half years.
I just discovered my dream bike: the Oporto by Cooper Bikes.
How I stumbled upon this beauty is beyond me, however, I could look at those 4 rotating photos on their website forever.
Why is it my dream bike?
1. It’s SUPER light (something that I really look for in a bicycle). It’s only 0.2 kg / 0.45 lbs heavier than a Fuji Feather. And compared to other bikes on the market that are similar (like the Bobbin Madam or Linus Mixte) this bike is almost 10lb lighter.
2. It has a lugged steel frame. I love steel frame bikes but these days all bikes are welded and I find welded joints to be fugly, which is another reason why I’ve been sticking to vintage frames. Lugs are beautiful.
3. It comes with fenders, a sleek chain guard and a pannier and it’s still super light!
Oh man I want this bike so much! It would be my grocery-getter replacement for fair weather riding.
They don’t seem to have a Canadian distributor yet.
.. although I must admit, I’m scared to ask how much they sell them for.
YAY! The bike corral has returned to Kensington Market!!
Now if they can provide another corral for the southern part of the neighbourhood (on Kensington Ave by Essence of Life or that tofu store) it would be amazingly perfect.
Late last year one of my beagles pulled down my favourite helmet from a shelf and chewed the inside foam. I was so disappointed because it’s such a waste to throw away a great shell just because the inside foam is ruined. Needless to say, I couldn’t fix it and had to get a replacement.
So I got a Bern winter helmet equipped with a winter liner that has ear flaps as a replacement. It’s sooooo warm. I love it!
Winter has finally arrived in Toronto and yesterday morning I rode to my Running Room group run and then did some groceries. It was super cold and my face felt like it was going to fall off from freezing.
This will be my third winter riding my Grocery-Getter and there are a few rusty spots appearing, but otherwise it’s a reliable, light and practical bike to ride in any season. Because of the basket, it gets ridden a lot more than my Nishiki.
So now that winter’s here, I just wanted to give it some extra praise and thank it for getting me around town.
Go little Grocery-Getter Go!
Did you make any bike related resolutions 2012?
I have a few bike goals (resolution sounds so rigid and formal) for this year:
• to clean my bike more – it deserves to look as nice as it rides
• to try to plan Cupcake Rides further in advance to give more time to promote them
• try to ride on different streets and routes around town, instead of just sticking to the same old bike lane
• to make the 2012 Cupcake Ride season the best one yet!!
Here’s to a year of fun, safe and happy rides. And may the wind always be at your back in 2012.