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Archive for the ‘Bike People’ Category

My Tikit has found a new owner. I posted it for sale on the Bike Friday Yak list, and I got a quick response from someone who was very interested. We worked out a deal to meet up in Buffalo. Here is the Tikit. It looks like it is trying to escape, but I was putting it together for a demo ride.

 

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One  last ride.

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This bit of the Buffalo lakefront is very nice.

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According to my records, I logged 129 rides on the bike, for a total of about 1600 km. This was also the ride that I used for STP in 2016.

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I was very happy that the buyer, Marti, was already a Tikit owner, so she was familiar with all the quirks of the design. Here she is with her other Tikit that also has a belt drive and a NuVinci hub as well. Sounds like my bike has found a happy home.

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The pie ride is a weekly informal ride put on by the Vancouver Bicycle Club. From their website:

Wednesday Night Pie Rides

The ride: We zip around the edges of Vancouver. Starting from Canada Place we climb to Prospect Point in Stanley Park, then along Beach to Science World, across to Kits, and out to UBC and back home along the bike routes of Kits. A fast, but friendly ride with several stops to collect everyone.

Meet: EVERY Wednesday at 4:30 PM at Canada Place (west side). (Ride depends on the weather.)

Distance: About 20 to 50 km, depending on how far you ride.

Pace: Multi-paced – please wait at pre-determined spots for others.

I went down to the start point at Canada Place, not knowing quite what to expect.  After accosting several people who were not part of the club, I finally meet up with these fine people.

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I was told that my Brompton was the first six wheeled bike to appear on the pie ride.

Lots of car traffic on Georgia approaching the Lion’s Gate Bridge.

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Entering Stanley Park, I see a Haul a Day in the wild.

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Circling the perimeter of the park, I was pleasantly surprised with the lack of car traffic at this time of day. I was told that ramps to the Bridge are closed and so cars don’t take this route at this time of day.

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First regroup was at Prospect Point.

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After circling the park, we ride out along Beach Blvd, and along Pacific Ave, eventually going onto the multiuse path to Science World.

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The second official regroup point is just after Science World.

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At this point, several other riders who live in the east end peeled off, and it was down to Henry and I to head towards UBC along the Seaside route.

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I was told that the last regroup point is at the top of the hill leading up from Spanish Bank, right by the Chan Centre.

The ride tonight was relatively fast paced, but with regroup points, and also various people peeling off to head home. Overall it was very enjoyable, and also nice to meet a few local cyclists.

 

 

 

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Today was the annual Bells on Danforth ride, a day to remind ourselves about the joy of cycling.

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Bells on Bloor organized a small ride to the ride starting from Bloor and Spadina.

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Albert pulling a bike trailer with signage.

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Across the viaduct.

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A brief detour south as a portion of the Danforth was closed off at Broadview for a street fair.

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The ride starts at Withrow Park. Tom is our emcee today.

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Liz from CycleTO and Janet Joy from the Reading Line.

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First speaker was Peter Tabuns, newly reelected MPP. He read out the acknowledgment of lands, and then apologized for not being free to ride with us.

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Next: Janet Joy Wilson talked about the upcoming book ride on August 26 that is themed around the Prince Edward Viaduct. She was raffling off a signed copy of “In the Skin of a Lion”.

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As Bells on Danforth is a non partisan community organization, they did not allow anyone who is running for office to speak. However, Mary-Margaret McMahon is not in that category as she will be stepping down in the fall due to a self imposed two term limit. She talked about how she will continue to press for better bike infrastructure, partially through her efforts on PWIC.

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Janet Davis announced just this week that she is also not running this fall. With the loss of her and Mary-Margaret, we have lost two strong proponents of cycling, and the two champions of the Woodbine bike lanes. She said that she and MM will continue to press for a corridor study to be started before the election as part of a continuing push for bike lanes on the Danforth. She reminded us that not only should we be talking our local councillors; we should also be putting pressure on the mayor’s office.

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Liz Sutherland announced CycleTO’s new campaign: #BuildTheGrid, which is an update of the “minimum grid” campaign.

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Just before the ride, the draw for the book was done.

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Regrettably I did not get the name of our happy winner.

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Mark from CycleTO.

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One thing that was noticeable to me was the large number of families with kids, many more that I have ever seen on the Bells on Bloor rides. Here is the most elaborate kid bike set up I saw today.

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Now time to line up on Logan.

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Our leaders head off with the banner.

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Here we go.

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Lots of kids.

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Albert Koehl.

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I was impressed that Danielle’s friend could ride slowly enough in full aero tuck position.

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Jess Spieker from Friends and Families for Safe Streets.

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Warren “pool noodle” Huska.

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Approaching Woodbine.

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Turning north on Danforth Rd.

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Arriving at the Oakridge CRC.

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Janet Joy with Sarah Climenhaga who is running for Mayor. She is fully engaged on active transportation issues.

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Scarborough Cycles and the Ward 32 group.

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Some fellow Bells on Bloor members.

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One last reminder about the new campaign. I forgot to ask CycleTO to smile.

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Overall, a perfect day for a bike ride, with lots of families present. Starting and finishing at Community Centres was a smart idea.  Thanks to all the organizers for a wonderful event.

Here is a brief video of the front half of the rider pack.

 

 

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Perennial Cycle is a bike shop that I’ve wanted to visit for many years. Back when I was living in Michigan, I’d occasionally things from them since they carried many unique items for recumbents, such as Radical Designs panniers. This past weekend, I had the opportunity to stay in Minneapolis and so I finally got to see the shop in person. Even better: on Saturday they were running one of a series of Pastry Rides to promote #30daysofbiking during April.

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Not quite knowing what to expect, my buddy Steve and I arrived at the shop at about 9 am. Quite a large crowd had already gathered.

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We borrowed bikes for the occasion. Where else in North America are you going to find a bike shop where the rentals are Bromptons? Mine was a superlight with dynamo lighting and a third party midrise bar. Quite an upgrade from my own number.

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Steve talks to a fellow Brompton rider.

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Yuba bikes was sponsoring today’s ride. This Supermarché was put to work hauling coffee from Peace Coffee. Note the Brompton shipping cartons.

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All shapes and sizes of bikes and riders were in evidence.

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Retrogrouch representation.

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Mark and Mary were riding this Vision tandem with OSS and IPS.

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Martha gets us organized just before we start.

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Our lead off rider was on a Brompton.

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Here we go.

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Stopped on Humboldt at Lake.

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Turning east on the Midtown Greenway.

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This section has a pedestrian section marked by a white line on the right.

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Here the pedestrian path is slightly separated.

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The offramp towards Nicollete.

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Going north on Nicollette Ave.

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Arriving at the Minneapolis Institute of Art.

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Group picture. There were about a hundred of us.

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And now pastries and coffee. Pastry from the Salty Tart.

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Steve and I.

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Lots of fun talking with like minded cyclists. Minnesotans are very friendly! Since I happened to be riding a Brompton, there was lots of Brompton related chat as well.

Selfie with shop owner Luke Breen, who is a good guy.

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Luke is now giving away raffle prizes. If you go on one of their rides, be sure to sign up; there were some pretty nice things being given away.

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At this point, we decided to leave a bit early. Mark and Mary were kind enough to lead us back on their tandem. Here’s glimpse of a separated bike lane on 26th.

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Here on the greenway, we pass some Department of Transportation staff who were demonstrating an Autonomous shuttle. They yelled out that we should stop to check it out, but I responded that we preferred human power which drew a chuckle.

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Back at the shop, it was time to take a look around. I really liked this mini bike rigged up to demonstrate dynamo lighting.

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The colorway on this bike is clearly meant for adults, not kids.

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Here is their rack of Bromptons. The gray ones on the bottom row are rentals.

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A good selection of Catrikes.

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Recumbents, long tails, and commuter bikes.

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Of course I couldn’t leave empty handed. Among the things that I got were a SpedDial clamp set, and a Radical carrying bag that got a rave review on their website.

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Thanks so much to Luke and his staff for their hospitality. If you want to visit a great bike shop that carries all manner of bikes that are not for the MAMIL set, you should definitely check it out.

Also thanks to the Salty Tart for their treats. Here is their stand at MSP.

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An additional shout out to Martha who apparently wants to visit this shop in Toronto that is just around the corner from where I buy most of my groceries.

#itsasmallworld #supportindependentbusiness

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Update: Perennial Cycle has posted their photo album here.

Just a few more pictures:

Just around the corner from the bike shop is a bike share station. It looks like it is run on the same platform as Toronto’s system.

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There were a variety of bike racks around town. These didn’t look that space efficient.

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This was was better.

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Scarborough Cycles is a community based program that is promoting cycling in the east end of the city. They have been running programs for three years now, including safe cycling workshops, group rides, and DIY drop in bike repair. They are currently based at Accesspoint Danforth, on Danforth just east of Victoria Park. They advertised a winter group ride, and I thought that I’d join in.

Here is our group at the start of the ride. Program manager Marvin is in blue, together with three of their youth volunteers, and Linda, who came over from midtown to join in as well.

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Here we go down Victoria Park. The pavement is in pretty bad shape, but I’ve seen potholes all over the city after this particularly cold winter.

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Downhill towards the lake.

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On the Martin Goodman Trail, just west of Balmy Beach.

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Working our way around one of the many remaining patches of black ice.

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As we approached Woodbine Beach, we took the opportunity to check out the Winter Stations. Some of them were not finished yet, as the official opening is not until this Monday. We liked this Pussy Hat. The extensions made for nicely padded seating.

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The next one had some pivoting cones on stilts. I was a bit disappointed that they weren’t designed to make noise; the cones were just hollow.

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Here’s a closeup of one of their program bikes: a nicely kitted out Simcoe city bike.

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Could have used a fat bike today.

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The next exhibit was still under construction.

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Regrettably, we didn’t have time to check the two or three remaining stations. We decided to head back up the hill, taking advantage of the Woodbine bike lane. Here we are riding through the infill neighbourhood that used to be the site of the Woodbine race track.

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Marvin in the lead.

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Here we are on Dixon Rd, which is the short east-west connector to the Woodbine bike lanes. They end one block north of Queen St.

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Some green paint has been laid down near some of the intersections. Here the green paint is “protecting” us from the cars to our left that are wanting to turn right.

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Then a quick ride east along the Danforth back to home base.

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Marvin got this shot of me riding sweep.

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The community hub has many services, including a walk in medical clinic, education workshops, settlement services, and youth activities. Here are just a few shots of the interior of the building, which is a converted warehouse.  The green roof has some gardens for produce, herbs, etc.

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This shot looking down at the first floor shows the movable walls that are used to reconfigure rooms to accommodate events of different sizes. The place was buzzing, with a Bengali language activity in one area, and a seed swap in another.

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Scarborough Cycles has big plans for 2018. Last year they provided about 1300 services, while they were running from May to December. This year they will be running all year round (hence the winter group ride), they have a second bike hub at the Birchmount Bluffs Neighbourhood Centre, and they will be opening a third bike hub. As Marvin pointed out to the audience at this year’s Reading Line, there is only one bike shop in Scarborough, and so these bike hubs provide an accessible and essential service to the community.

Thanks to Marvin for showing me around, and for organizing today’s ride.

 

 

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Good friend Tim Potter (Sustainable transportation manager for Michigan State University Bikes) dropped by this weekend, and of course he wanted to check out some of the bike infrastructure since it had been at least four years since he and I had ridden around town.

Here is my really bad picture of Tim…

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and from his much better picture, you can see that we are checking out the Bloor bike lane. (all photos with me in it are by Tim, except where noted)

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Next stop, dropping by the bike team to see what is going on. Here Tim poses by Eta Prime.

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Bruce and Calvin were working on the plug for Arbiter.

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I’m posing beside this year’s WHPSC poster.

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Tim was riding the Brompton that day.

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Overall, it was nice to ride around with someone who was appreciative of the improvements in bike infrastructure in the downtown area.

Here we are back at home, with matching N+1 shirts. Get yours here. (photo  M Koga)

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His daughter designed this shirt, which is available on Amazon.

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Note that the shirt means different things to different people:

  • from the viewpoint of a Michigander, if you are cycling on the road, more often than not drivers will yell at you to “get on the sidewalk”.
  • from my viewpoint in Toronto, is says that we shouldn’t be cycling on the sidewalk.

And then it was time for beer, this particular example from Henderson’s Brewing.

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The next day, Tim checks out Hoopdriver Bicycles (unfortunately closed on a Sunday morning).

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Since there was snow in the forecast, and I just happened to have an excellent bike mechanic as a guest….

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Tim is impressed that the Haul a Day can stand on end.

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Tim shows me his patented method of mounting tires.

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To cap the day off, I had a chance to tag along with Tim to meet Chris Phelan, Executive director of the Ride of Silence. (Photo H Potter).

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I was honoured to fill him in on some of the things that have been happening in Toronto, particularly with regards to the collaborations with organizations like Friends and Families for Safe Streets, and the united push for VRU legislation.

 

 

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After my recent acquisition of a Brompton, I started to think that perhaps I had too many folding bikes. Here are three of them, not counting the Dahon that I have stashed in Vancouver.

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So the obvious thing was to put the Tikit up for sale (and I will still do that), but in the meantime there was some chatter on FB about someone with their apartment eliminating indoor bike parking, and so needing a folding bike……and ideally one with disc brakes.  Suddenly I had an opportunity to give my PBW a good home.

Here it is, packed up and ready to be hauled downtown. A few extra parts, like the fenders, a wheel with a spare Alfine 8 spd hub, and a 24h 406 rim to match.

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Amusingly, on the way in, I catch the tail end of the Santa Claus parade. Santa actually saw me, and said “now THAT’s a bike!”.

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On a separate trip I also took in the suitcase that I used with it, bearing stickers from some of the adventures that I had with the PBW. The Illini sticker was from a trip where I was riding in past some corn fields in Hawkins IN Urbana IL, and four kids rode by on their BMX’s and said “cool bike!”.

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I’ve had some good rides with the PBW. It was custom made for me about sixteen years ago by Hugh in Chico California. He no longer builds, and is now a recumbent dealer. The long term plan was to rebuild it with the Alfine hub, but now both the bike and the rebuild project has been passed onto the new proud owner: Victor ex-Aerovelo, ex-HPVDT and all around good guy (and mad scientist).

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I’m glad I found a good home for the bike.

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