Category Archives: Bikes

Century ride!

wpid-IMG_20130928_102953.jpgSo I totally forgot to post my century bicycle ride from September 28, 2013. Oops!

I cycled on the Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath Trail from the Memorial Parkway Trailhead. I headed north just ahead of the Akron Marathon runners for the first few miles. Apparently, the trail was supposed to be closed. That would explain all of the spectators cheering me on! I continued north until the Tremont Trailhead, took a short break, and cycled south.

Lunch was at the Memorial Parkway Trailhead. This was a metric century in case I wasn’t up to the whole ride. After a half hour break, I cycled through downtown Akron and south to Franklin Township. The last 20 miles found my hands a little tingly and my ass ready for something soft. I made it though, and probably had the legs for another 20 miles of flat cycling. Here’s my approximate route.



My chosen bicycle was my January 1974 Mocha Brown Raleigh Sports 3-speed tank of a bike. It was built the month after I was born. It’s not the fastest and certainly isn’t the lightest (it’s super heavy), but it’s comfortable and fast enough for me. The entire trip was around 9 hours and the actual time in the saddle was around 7.5 hours. My biggest impression was that I needed a partner next time. I was pretty bored for most of the trip and listened to Pandora on my phone a lot. The weather was beautiful – sunny and in the 70′s F (20′s C).


wpid-IMG_20130928_171910.jpgI may try again next year, but probably only with a partner. I’m pretty happy to have accomplished my first hundred mile ride!

Winter Project: 700c Wheelset – Complete!

700c WheelsetFinished my wheels in an evening! Building wheels is fun. I’m trying to set up my red Schwinn as a super reliable city bike – no external cables and with internal wiring for the lighting. This wheelset should be good for fast pavement rides, hopping curbs, and dirt/gravel trails. I’ll post more about the bike once all the parts are in. But for now, here are the specs on the wheels:

  • Front Hub: Shimano DH-3D72 Dynohub. I got two of these for around 60% off the regular price. One is on my vintage Hercules (Which I need to photograph and post). These are good hubs.
  • Rear Hub: Sturmey Archer S2C Kickback 2-speed hub with coaster brake. Pedal backwards a little bit to switch between 1st and 2nd gears. No Cables!
  • Rims: Alexrims Adventurer
  • Tires: Continental Speedride. Widest low rolling resistance tires I could find. Good for concrete and off-road.
  • Spokes/Nipples: 14g stainless spokes with brass nipples. Both in black.


Winter project: 700c wheelset


I combined my birthday and holiday gifts to buy parts for a new wheel set for my city bike. I’m super excited to put them together. It’s the first completely new wheel set I’ve built. I’ll post the completed wheels with specs.

Led 3-speeds!


Pair of 1974 Raleigh Sports.

Observe the overwhelming beauty of led-lit English 3-speeds at dusk! More photos after the jump.
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Finished bike project!


1989 Schwinn

1989 Schwinn World Sport Single-Speed Project



I finally finished up a bike project that started last summer. It’s a 1989 Schwinn World 10-speed that I converted to a one-speed fixed/free. Barring a magical bicycle benefactor appearing, I’m calling it complete. It weighs in at approximately 25 lbs. as shown. More photos are below the break.

Here’s what I did with it:

  • Completely disassembled, cleaned, greased, and waxed.
  • 700c Retrospec single-speed flip-flop hub wheelset.
  • Vintage Shimano wing nuts on front wheel.
  • Shimano UN55 107mm sealed bottom bracket.
  • 46-tooth white no-name alloy crankset.
  • All City white track pedals.
  • White and chrome KMC chain.
  • Antique 1950′s chrome chainguard salvaged from a sad Hawthorne-Hercules 3-speed.
  • Dimension Cork grips that I cut down.
  • Velo-Orange Montmartre Handlebars – I like these better than expected.
  • Velo-Orange City brake levers.
  • White water bottle cage (no-name).
  • No-name, Planet-Bike-clone rear light.
  • Saddle is one that I’ve owned for years that has red and black on it. :)

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Tonight’s sleeping accommodations


In preparation for bike camping, the back yard is a good testing ground… Along with earplugs and Tylenol pm for adults.

Ready for a recycling run…

Here’s my decked-out cargo bike. This was my main transportation in 2005-2006. It has an xtracycle rear-end and an electric-assist hub up front. I added the aerobars this spring I also replaced the tyres with some 2.25″ City Hoppers in brown. They provide some nice cushioning over the bumps.

It’s mostly used these days at night on recycling runs. However, once it warms up at night, it’s going camping!




Bike project: 1971 Schwinn Super Sport

Here’s my latest (and hopefully last for a while) bike project – a 1971 Schwinn Super Sport. These bikes were fillet-brazed by hand. This type of construction is fairly uncommon in modern bikes. You can read more about these bikes here:

This bike received a thorough cleaning and greasing. I converted the heavy one-piece Ashtabula crank to a modern 3-piece crank using an insert and sealed bottom bracket. I also upgraded most of the heavy steel groupset with decent vintage suntour parts from a more modern Schwinn bike that was converted to single speed.

It weighs in at 29 pounds as pictured. I find the ride quick, maneuverable, and fairly comfortable. The smooth fillets and bright yellow paint are quite lickably pleasing!



Project of the day: 3-speed hub refurbish

I’m recovering from the flu. My body is still wonky, but the brain is bored, bored, bored. I’ve been doing some work on my Raleigh Tourist seeing if I can get the antique rod brakes up to snuff (more in another post). As a result, I’ve ended up with a couple of vintage/antique 3-speed hubs. I’ve taken them completely apart, scraped off 50+ year-old gunk, greased, and totally refurbished them. The middle hub is a Sturmey Archer AW from the mid-70′s. The closest is a fairly rare Brampton from the 1950′s. It’s a better quality clone of the AW. The hub in the rear is a new dynamo hub – no need to rebuild.


Great Wall of Bikes

Figured out a good way to store the English 3-speeds. I plan to post a page with pretty photos in the spring, but this will do for now.
In order from left to right:

  • 1976 Raleigh Space Rider kids’ bike
  • 1967-69 Hercules gent’s 23″


  • 1979 Raleigh Sports lady’s 18.5″


  • 1974 Raleigh Sports gents 23″


  • 1977 Raleigh Tourist gents 24″


  • 1970 Robin Hood lady’s 19.5″ (left)


  • 1968 Raleigh Tourist lady’s 22″