Sweet The Sting

Tori Amos has a recent song out called Sweet The Sting that I have on my MP3 player when I run. On past rides at the veloway I've been stung by flying insects and stung by other riders and inline skaters passing me. Hell, everyone passed me. Oh, and how sweet it is to finally have a bike that can pass riders, rather than be passed. Today was awesome as I passed brand new Cannondales, new Treks and new Specialized bikes with a $69 used Bianchi. OK, given the Bianchi's not in the same shape as when I purchased it at the pawn shop, but still. And granted some of the bikes were mountain bikes and some of the riders were beefier in the BMI category than me, but still. One or two had ripped calves, quads, and brand new bikes.

The Bianchi was put together with parts from two other thrift shop bikes, left for dead, with a $15 price tag. The used aero bars alone on one of the bikes were worth $15. The only thing new on the bike were the cables, the seat, tires and tubes.

This was the first time I really got to test the new aero bar extensions and they worked great. They sat in aero bar tubes and jingled a little when I switched to the regular bars during the turns and this was a little annoying. I'll have to wrap them or cushion them so they sit better.

The other thing I noticed was the lack of a small sprocket when going through some of the down hills. I received a new seven speed 11/28 cassette from an eBay auction and I'll have to install it to get some additional speed. I have to fix the speedometer, as I accidentally yanked the wires while adjusting the position on the fork. Converting my lap time to miles per hour I came up with 18.9 which is respectable for a $69 bike, and that's an average with some inclines thrown in. I'll have to do a time trial on a flat surface to get a true measure of the bike.

To break into the turn because I was going too fast and might have lost control was a great feeling on a trash heap bike. I couldn't go any faster into that turn. Damn straight. Sweet the sting.


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