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Old 01-26-08, 12:11 PM   #1
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My Bicycling thing is...

I was reading old posts on the Recreational/Family Forum and saw a closed poll about how people saw themselves cycling wise. It was interesting but rather limited, so I thought how about a thread that was more detailed, yet open?

So here is the idea. List your top cycling interests, and write a brief paragraph about each so folks can see clearly what you are talking about. I guess in the interest of brevity we should limit it to no more then five areas. I will do mine as a start to the thread and as an example of what I mean.

1. Scenic rides.
The complete opposite of getting there. Just riding along enjoying the view. Stopping for anything that looks interesting to me to check it out. Not fast, not far, but enjoyable.

2. Tinkering.
I like to tinker with bicycles, from keeping my bikes in tune to restoring an older bike. I seem to particularly like to upgrade them like putting modern alloy components on an old three speed, giving me a bicycle that is kind of different from what you can buy. If I had more resources I would be into doing all kinds of interesting things to bicycles. I am fascinated by electric bikes and think an old 3-speed with a Cyclone setup would be a blast.

3. Transportation.
Using a bicycle to get from here to there and back again. Almost the opposite of my first thing. I guess this could be considered a combination of utility bicycling and commuting. However, I have no interest in proving something to myself or others and am not even going to try to be car free.

4. 3-speed bicycles, especially roadsters. I do not have a roadster but as you can see from my sig I would really like to. I have a couple of English 3-speeds (Sports/Light Roadsters) , one a newer, but not better, version of the one I had as a kid. I guess this would be collecting if I had the resources, but as it is it is just having a couple of old bicycles that I like.

5. Bicycling, and walking, are my preferred ways of getting exercise, but I almost never ride just for exercise.

There you have my cycling interests, what are yours?
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Old 01-26-08, 01:45 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by graywolf View Post

1. Scenic rides.
I do a lot of these! Taking photos, seeing wildlife, being able to write in my blog--all very good!

2. Tinkering.
Tinkering isn't quite my thing. I do know how to fix things, since I have 12 bikes to keep running!

3. Transportation.
I ride home from work, and take my bike or walk everywhere within a reasonable distance (25 miles or so RT).

4. 3-speed bicycles, especially roadsters.
Don't have any yet, but since my relatives probably worked making bicycles at some point, I figure I'll wind up with at least one eventually .

5. Bicycling, and walking, are my preferred ways of getting exercise, but I almost never ride just for exercise.
Yes, mine also! It's not riding to get exercise, but it is a good excuse to get out and get some fresh air.

There you have my cycling interests, what are yours?
I'm going to confess to a love of vintage steel bikes .

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Old 01-26-08, 02:03 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by graywolf View Post
1. Scenic rides.
That's me, I will pack a few items in the saddle bag and head out for a ramble. Quite often when I come to a fork or a turn in the road I flip a coin to decide which way to go

2. Tinkering
Always, I have at least 3 or 4 project bikes going all the time, some never seem to get fully completed.

3. Transportation
Yes, I ride to the grocery store and where ever else is feasible. We currently live too far out to ride to much of anywhere, but hope to change that in the future, one way or the other. When I lived in town I rode just about everywhere

4. 3-speed bicycles
IMHO just about the best bicycle concept ever, I own 3 ridable and have a couple more as project bikes

5. Bicycling, and walking, are my preferred ways of getting exercise, but I almost never ride just for exercise.
I have been riding bikes for over 40 years and have never really stopped. And have no plans too. The electric cycles intrigue me. I am a huge fan of utility bikes and would like to see more of them available on the market. I also like the folders for the ability to take them with you so you can ride after a long distance trip on some form of mass transit, to me the best of both worlds. Not currently car free, but would not might being a good bit car lighter.

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"Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred
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Last edited by wahoonc; 01-26-08 at 08:26 PM.
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Old 01-26-08, 02:48 PM   #4
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Building bike stuff. I enjoy building and modifying bike parts and accessories. I can do all kinds of stuff from sewing to welding. Some of the things i have built have even been featured at (cool website for cyclist who are DIYers. Some things i've built include: hard panniers, automatic handlebar end lights, 16"x16" front rack, full santa sleigh bicycle trailer, etc.

Greenway rides. No traffic, just me and the joggers. I wish the trails around here were longer though, about 18 miles is about as far as I can go without doing a section twice.
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Old 01-26-08, 07:00 PM   #5
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Getting in Better Shape is one of my goals. Not better shape for riding specifically, just healthier. I saw one of my cousins that I hadn't seen in ages. He says, "Hey, you've put on some weight there!" Well, I thought that was a bit rudish. But then he went on to say he had been riding a bike and had lost about 60 lbs. And my older brother has been doing so as well. Both care nothing about racing or multigears, just get on and go. I started with a cheap mountain bike, rode it off and on when it was working for a year, then got my single-speed cruiser and have really enjoyed it. Last time I checked, I have lost about 20 lbs in the last year and a half. That's not a lot, but moving in the right direction. I'm faster now than what I've been, and been able to go on some of the group rides and not feel too badly about it all. A while back, I went to help a friend with some moving, and noticed I didn't get out of breath going up and down stairs. That was a cool feeling.

Fresh Air. This sort of goes with getting in better shape, but I just like to get out and do things, but I'm not really sports-minded either. Hiking in the mountains was a favorite activity for the 5 years I lived in Colorado, and I'm finding that bicycling gives me some of that same benefit here in the flatlands of Dallas. I've been going over to White Rock Lake and riding around it on weekends.

Tinkering is something I'm sort of accidentally engaged in. One of the items I had on my Christmas list was a low-gravity bicycle. So I've been working on assembling that off and on. It wouldn't take that long if I just dove in and worked on it full time. But I've laced up wheels for the first time ever. Currently, I'm sawing/drilling/filing out some tools for the adjustable bottom bearing adjustment. Give me another month or two and it ought to be running. More details will be posted when I'm done. I should be able to take Brutus the bulldog for rides in it, too.

Touring, Bicycle Commuting, Utility Cycling are ideas I just never really thought about until I started reading more online. The ideas intrigue me, but I may or may not make much headway in that direction. I've got an old tandem bicycle that I plan to convert into a reverse-bakfiets, plus the low-gravity bike. That would let me do all my grocery shopping by bicycle, but on the other hand, that's a minor part of my driving. I can commute via bicycle and commuter train, but it takes me a good while longer than driving, and getting to work all sweaty won't work except on weekends. I've done a lot of camping, and have been pondering the touring idea. That would probably amount to a 20-25 mile ride out ot a local lake to camp, but still sounds like fun. I don't plan to tour the country or anything. No one else in the family has any interest in cycling, so that takes some of the attraction out as well.

Unicycling. I got a unicycle the day after Thanksgiving and have been learning to ride it. It's a slow process, but I'm doing okay for me, I guess. It just sounded like fun and a challenge.
"be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."
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Old 01-26-08, 07:14 PM   #6
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1. Transport/utility - The bike is my primary means of transport and my primary means of moving cargo, which is why I have an assortment of trailers in all shapes and sizes. I commute 200-300 miles per week depending on where I have to go. I've hauled multi-hundred pound loads for dozens of miles. This category is the bulk of my riding.

2. Family riding. This is my favorite. Plodding along with the kids in tow on the local MUPs, stopping at playgrounds, picnics, quality time. I just don't get enough time doing this.

3. Tinkering. My first point, coupled with my pathological case of tim-the-toolman-itis means that I have to try to fix it to make it better, even when it is working perfectly fine.

4. Social riding. That's when I unleash the raging fury that is my Cannondale CAAD9 Optimo1 blingmobille and get together with my lance-wannabe roadie friends. They pretend to be badasses untill we hit the first big climb and that's when I reap the rewards of 250+ miles a week of commuting on a 50+ pound fat-tired bike. I wait for them at the top, only to enjoy the excuse-making that ensues after they finally catch their breaths.
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Old 01-26-08, 07:33 PM   #7
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1. Riding long, long, long distances ... the challenge of those rides appeals to me.

2. Touring here in North America, and around the world.

See my website in my signature line below for further information.
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Old 01-26-08, 09:00 PM   #8
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1. I ride for the love of silent, smooth, speed and the thrill of personal fitness accomplishments. To be able to ride centuries and double centuries without any pain and energy to spare is a good feeling.

2. Thankfully, I can do all mechanics on my bikes from complete strip downs and rebuilding.

3. I don't collect bicycles at all, just give me a decent bike with good fit, and components and I'm happy. I have just two bikes and believe in "getting to know your tools by using them".

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Old 01-26-08, 09:21 PM   #9
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The joy in the journey. I like doing it! It's the getting there that is more important than arriving. Sometimes I am trying to do it fast, and other times more sedately. The challenge of the elements or topography and the sense of accomplishment found in overcoming them.

The precision of the machine. I love the pure single-minded devotion to effortless forward motion as expressed in top end bicycles. Elegant purpose driven design.

The challenge of car-free life. It demands a different way of looking at the world I live in. It makes me feel more self sufficient.
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Old 01-27-08, 12:34 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by graywolf View Post
5. Bicycling, and walking, are my preferred ways of getting exercise, but I almost never ride just for exercise.
I rarely use a bicycle to just get somewhere. On the other hand I ride every day for exercise. Thousands of miles a year. Tinkering when needed. I spent way too many years as a pro mechanic, so of course my bike is a mess most of the time.
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Old 01-27-08, 01:06 AM   #11
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EH - you should close your eyes.

When they start calling you "the bike guy" then you know that cycling really has become a very important part of your life...

I seem to have a thing for old green English bikes... 3 speeds and fixed gears are my favourite kinds of bikes.

1955 Lenton Sports fixed gear.

1954 Raleigh Sports 3 speed.

1978 Raleigh Superbe 3 speed.

I love volunteering at the bike co-op where I am known as the old bike guy although I'm not 65...the bike on the stand is my 1962 Peugeot fixed gear that I was in the process of building.

I live a car free life and use my bicycles for all my transportation needs and they are responsible for much of my recreational activities... I love social rides, touring, blazing road rides, mountain biking, and am really passionate about commuting and utility cycling. I sit on the board of our commuter's society and am proud of an organization that does so much to promote a viable alternative to driving.

I also plan to start building my own bicycles in the future and hope that someone will be interested in my classic lugged bike frames.

In all of this it is not the bikes that have the most appeal but rather, the people I have met who share this love of these wondrous machines.
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Old 01-27-08, 09:13 AM   #12
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1. Commuting
I commute to my volunteer job every day og the week.

2. Utility
I ride for groceries, errands, and most trips under 15 miles.

3.Fun and fitness
Fun and fitness fits into all my riding, but I ride most days of reasonable weather for fun, relaxation, and enjoyment. Riding helps, along with a reasonable diet, keep me trim.
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Old 01-27-08, 12:37 PM   #13
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I love it all.

...though my love for it changes. Sometimes I like tinkering most, then I like touring. I love commuting, and the scenic ride.
Oh, I love the memories as well.
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Old 01-27-08, 01:24 PM   #14
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I am getting more in to racing. A couple of years ago I considered myself a triathlete, now I'm a bike racer. I've run all of 6 miles this year, swum not at meter. But I'm on my bike every day and I joined a team to have teammates to race with and to get a discount at the shop where I was spending all my discretionary income anyway...

But I'm also a daily commuter. And I've done it so long now that the comments from co-workers have stopped. No one asks me if I want a ride home when it's sprinkling because they know what the answer will be.

When I get home, I love to tinker. I've never been particularly mechanically inclined, but there's something about the inherent efficiency and pure design of a bike that speaks to me. I take my race bike to the shop, but I love to work on my fixed gear and neo-retro Italian road bike. I also have a '86 Gazelle Champion Mondial that I will eventually build as a period-correct restoration.

Finally, nothing gives me greater pleasure than a ride around the park with my son. We took off his training wheels at 3 years, 4 months, and ever since we've had a standing date to go for a ride on Sunday mornings and summer evenings.
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Old 01-27-08, 09:36 PM   #15
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I love using my bike for transportation - commuting to work and touring. There's nothing better than loading everything I need on my bike and taking off to see the world - ahhh, the freedom!!
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Old 01-28-08, 10:33 AM   #16
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My favorite part is fixing flat tires in the rain.

No, wait, that's not it. I like the transportation, the independence, the being outdoors, the cool equipment... what's not to like? I also like rejuvenating bikes I find in the trash.
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Old 01-28-08, 11:59 AM   #17
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It's the only form of excercise I've ever been consistent at doing. Everything else I just lose interest.
Nice scenery is just an extra benefit of riding outside.

I love converting road bikes into fixies

I really enjoy riding with the people in my club

The first rule of flats is You don't talk about flats!
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Old 01-28-08, 12:26 PM   #18
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The intrigue of being one of the "elite" club who recognize the bicycle as the most efficient vehicle created, and in all likelyhood a vehicle that will hold that title forever, and not one of the people under the delusion that a gossly inneficient vehicle like an automobile will be sustainable forever. (Don't flame me, I drive a car, so does my wife, I just don't like the idea that if I had all the calories in a tank of gas to use to ride my bike I could probably ride across the US and then some before running out of energy. Using a 2000lbs machine to transport a 200lbs person just does not make sense any way you look at it).

The ability to travel long distances under my own power on a machine I can completely break down and rebuild in a matter of hours.

The ability to leave the car at home and save money while I am both training and getting to work.
Sunrise saturday,
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Old 01-31-08, 01:55 PM   #19
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It is interesting to see how bicycling means different things to different folks. I hope that people will continue to post to this thread.
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Old 02-03-08, 04:21 PM   #20
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I like riding behind my wife who's really cute and looks terrific in her bike clothes.
Today, I believe my jurisdiction ends here...
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Old 02-03-08, 07:19 PM   #21
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I like slower fun rides with the kids. My son rides his own, while my daughter sits up in a child seat, but soon I'll move her onto a trailercycle. My wife will join in ever once in a while, but not too often as I usually take the kids out so she can study.

Then there are the trail rides. Either Hunting Island or Donnelly WMA. Sometimes I get to ride the beach over on Hilton Head. Those can be very scenic in the summer, just wear sunglasses.

Then the serious stuff. Mile after mile of serious road riding. I may race once or twice a year, and try to hang on with the "A" group.

Lately I've taken to SS/FG for whatever strange reason, going as far as to drive to Savannah to hang out with some college students to ride through downtown Savannah. I have no idea why I started this. I even ride FG with clipless pedals.
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