Monday, August 20, 2012

Montreal Mini Maker Fair

On August 25th and 26th from 12 to 6, I'll be at Monttreal Olympic Stadium with a couple of friends and our home made custom bikes. If you make it to the fair, don't be shy and come to say Hi. It will be our pleasure to meet you.

Gerry :)

Sunday, August 19, 2012

A Blogger friend needs your help.

Lindsay from You ain't got Jack is moving her whole family to England and she is facing some logistical issues. If you are in the UK, take the time to read her post and see if you can't help her out in any way. I'm sure there is someone who reads this that can give the some assistance.

Thanking you in advance.

Gerry :)

You Ain't Got Jack: Your thoughts and ideas are needed-: I know we've all moved before, we all know it sucks, yada yada...but I've never moved on such a limited budget and an international move at...

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Time capsule from the 1990's

I recently found a bunch of films in my fridge that was almost 20 years old and had them processed this week. What a surprise when I found these 3 shots. All of which represent a first in my cycling life.

My first commuter bike, a cheapo mountain bike from Consumer's Distributing. It came in a box and I had to assemble it myself to save $10.

My first real mountain bike, a Velo Sport made here in Quebec. Until about 5 years ago it still had the rigid fork. The only reason that motivated that purchase was the bike's colour: red!

And this one, the genesis to all my recumbent builds. It wasn't the best looking, weighed a ton but it did the job very well. This picture was taken after it's very first ride. This machine was the result of my very first search on the web.

I'm glad I finally got these processed.

Hope you enjoyed these as much as I did.

Gerry :)

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Bike project 2012 from Hell!

I've heard of the book "Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance". Until recently I never bothered to do the search on Google of what it actually was. I imagined it was about being Zen when actually doing motorbike repair. Turns out I know as much about that book as I do about motorcycle insurance!

If my original understanding was true that the book was about being Zen when working on a bike, I could say that I've hit a massive wall. Talk about the Universe turning on its ass to tell you, you are waisting your time!

In the beginning the idea was to get a decent City bike together in order to have a ride to take me around town during my first vacation week in May. I needed something to carry my photo gear, my new found passion. As some of you know, it was going pretty well until this happened:

Don't let the image fool you, the streets are not ablaze every night, in fact this was a rare occasion and I was lucky to be at the right place, at the right time.

Daily protest in Montreal, my hometown, that started out for student tuition hikes and then rallied the rest of the population against a corrupt government. When you dream of someday being a photojournalist and this type of thing is right at your doorstep, you just have to be there.

The one thing that is present every night is the no quarters given to media people from the Police on the streets. A camera is not a get out of jail or all access pass. This factor is important because when people get arrested, that's a risk present every evening, when they have a bike, it just gets tossed in a pile by Police on the side of the street. The owner is lucky if the bike is still there when released 10 hours later.

Carrying a bike also slows you down and that's not a good thing when riot geared cops are running around. Walking and the subway in this case is the best way to get around town. So that kinda killed the motivation behind the project.

Whenever I actually had time to work on the bike, tools magically vanished, parts disappeared and things that usually mesh together started to get out of whack and refused to work in unison. I mean fenders are pretty straight forward and on this set up I might have to go with a full homebuilt custom job. But the cherry on the sunday is the rear tire.

After finishing the paint and installing the fork, I decided to put on the wheels and tires in order to see how this was coming along. Slapped my white Fat Franks on the rims, pumped the air up and installed the wheels on the bike. BOOM! That's what happened 30 minutes later while the damn thing was on the work rack in the Sun. Left it like that until I worked on the bike the following week. Check the tube, found a hole that indicated shavings on the inside of the rim. Fixed the rim, changed the tube, put in some air with 10 psi of loose just in case.

That was in the morning, in the late afternoon...POOF! AGAIN! Took it apart again, looked like I didn't do a proper job on the rim, fixed it, changed the tube, pumped it, left 10 psi loose and parked it. Guess what I found when I went back to work on it a week later? You guessed it, the rear tire flat as a pancake. So I just closed the door to the shed and decided to give it a rest.

The project is not dead. At some point in time the feel for it will come back and you will be the first ones to hear about it. This is not the first project I've tackled that came to a screeching halt before the finish and it won't be the last. Funny thing is when I do get back to it, it might get done in a day or two. Hey, a guy can dream right?

Don't forget to check out the how-to articles.

Ride safe and free.

Gerry :)