Won a race once. AND DON'T YOU EVER FORGET IT

  • Random “things that work” post…

    Not your usual “this £1299 hardtail frame works really well” nonsense (I mean, really! Spend that much on stuff and it damn well better work. Really bloody well!)
    No, just a couple of unsung heros that have made riding bikes slightly better without me ever thinking about them until earlier tonight, when I was sorting stuff out for tomorrow’s ride…

    First up, a mini pump.
    “Big woop” I hear you say. “I’ve got one of them”. Yes, you probably do. Well done. This one, however cost me £4, back in 2007.
    That’s cheap. Probably cheaper than yours.
    Not only is it cheap, but it also works. Despite being stuffed in numerous jersey pockets/camelbacks/strapped to seatposts (more about that in a sec…) over thousands and thousands of miles, when I dragged it out on Sunday after a pothole induced rapid tyre deflation (yes, a puncture as a result of not paying enough attention to where I was going, ahem), it quietly and competantly pushed enough air into the replacement tube to get the tyre back up to 90psi without me having to gurn like a weightlifter and flail about for hours on end.
    No fuss, no bells and whistles, no bits of carbon fibre, it’s just a little pump that I have total faith in. Ace.

    Ol' faithful :) on Twitpic

    I have no idea if you can still get them (it was from on-one, as you might just be able to tell from the mostly-worn-off logo), they’ve probably been replaced by something with more shiny bits, or greater ‘aerodynamic wind resistance reducing coatings’ or something. God knows. If they’re still around though, they’re well worth the pittance they cost!

    Second (and last for now, until I get bored/inspired again)
    A piece of velcro, with a sort of rubbery coating on one side, and a buckle, so you can loop it round itself.
    I know, these are pretty bling items, eh?!
    It’s a Byekyle strap.
    Bought (with some scepticism, I must admit) mid way through last year, when I discovered/realised my I-beam saddle and seatpost meant I couldn’t fit a saddlebag to my road bike, it’s first few rides were done with me spending more time looking down at the seatpost than where I was going, expecting the spare tube, pump (yes, the one I just waffled on about) and tyre levers to be bouncing their way down the road every time I hit the slightest of bumps.
    They didn’t. Even when I hit really big bumps and potholes (big enough to cause punctures, ahem). Impressed, I gave it a go on the MTB. It held everything in place, even while thrashing round Gisburn as fast as I could. It kept a spare tube nice and secure while racing at Hit the North a few weeks back, while I crashed and managed to eject bottles and contents of jersey pockets all over the place.

    Handy  strap on Twitpic

    It’s also doubled up as an impromtu trouser clip when riding to work and as a strap to hold light batteries to various frames while out night riding, when the original velcro straps wouldn’t hold everything tightly enough.
    You can get them from loads of places (I got mine from the XCRacer shop. Not sure if they’ve got them in at the mo’, but I imagine you can find them other places too) for but a few quid, in lots of colours, which is nice 🙂

    Right. That’s enough ‘unsung hero’ nonense for now!

     

    10:16 pm on February 20, 2012 | 1 Comment | # |

Comments

  • robbie 11:12 pm on March 14, 2012 | #

    Hi, looking for some advice on the advantages of a 29er for puffer race over a normal hardtail, new to all this game, did the puffer in january but want to do it again properly next time!! any chance you could e mail me to get some proper advice

    cheers rob

    ps amazed/gutted you jmc guys were actually solo, i presumed with speed you guys were passing me that you were in a quad!!