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Old 03-26-08, 05:46 PM   #1
hedgeapple
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Newbie in Kansas

Found this site the other night when I googled "Raleigh modification". I have a 72 Gran Prix which I bought new; the rear axle was bent and front axle threads stripped and I was looking for alternatives. Since then the bike has been in the shop for new wheels (700's, cassette to replace freewheel on rear for better bearing support to the axle).
I rode the Raleigh a lot when I was in college in WV in the early '70s, and again when stationed at RAF Mildenhall/UK in the mid-'80s, but not since. I did not take it to Germany (Bamberg) with me in the late '70s, but I did go through a couple of department-store Puegeots from the PX while there. I won't claim to have been fast, but I got to the big ring, and wherever I was going, as quick as I could. In Germany, I regularly blew off mofas (25kph mopeds) and ran with the 40kph mopeds - there was a moped gang (think "Hell's Elves") in the next village that did not like me. As I recall, there's only one fellow I never beat on a bicycle, but that only shows my limited contact with other riders.
I bought a Specialized Rockhopper 23 to use on the local farm roads - it's a good bike, perfect for my real needs, but it's no road burner. I got the Raleigh down from the rafters cuz I don't want to leave it behind, and I plan to keep it at the bus barn and ride it every day, but I am saving for something newer/stiffer/faster.
Goals: commute on the rockhopper (11 miles, one-way) this year; ride the RAGBRAI with my brother (a regular) on the Raleigh next year; lose weight, cut blood pressure, get fit; find that dude I never beat, or any available substitute, and drop him. HOO-aah.
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Old 03-26-08, 07:15 PM   #2
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Hi hedgeapple, did you post photos of the Gran Prix in Classic & Vintage yet? Perhaps we can convince you that your Raleigh is a nice machine, at least if you give us a chance .

I don't know if you will ever find the dude you never beat, but the rest of your goals are well within your grasp--so keep us informed of your progress.

Welcome to BF!

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Old 03-28-08, 05:47 PM   #3
hedgeapple
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East Hill - sounds like Boston or the UK perhaps.

Convince me that my Raleigh is a nice machine? Think you can, eh? Just cuz it was the most refined, best-equipped-for-the-money mount available at the time? Cuz I couldn't break it? (It did sustain a bent rear axle, but I suspect it was simply expressing some irritation at being used for cow-trailing on the farm)
The 2 department-store Peugeots I went through in Germany - THOSE were satisfying bikes. I bent axles, cranks, frames, a gooseneck, everything but wheels. Derived a real sense of accomplishment from those bikes.
Got the Raleigh back from the shop today: new 700 wheels, 11-28 7spd cassette, chain. Also bought/installed new saddle (the Brooks is rotting apart, will hang it up in the office) and brake pads to replace 16-year-old hardened plastic. It's a better ride than ever.
No pix. I have somewhere a photo of the Raleigh chained to the downspout outside my weather station at Mildenhall, but the bike rates better.
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Old 03-28-08, 05:51 PM   #4
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We shall await photos of the new, better Raleigh .

The East Hill refers to where I live in Kent, WA.

I am, however, a Lancashire Lass.

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Old 03-28-08, 06:04 PM   #5
hedgeapple
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Okay, wrong end of the country but I did nail the continent. And the Isle. Kent, as I recall, is not far from Boeing. I'm out of it now but I've driven trucks much of the past 10 years and been through there occassionally.
I'm about 30 miles north of Boeing Wichita. I often see 737 fuselages rolling the rails through Newton, headed your way I think.
Thanx for the welcome.
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Old 03-28-08, 06:11 PM   #6
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Yes, the 737 fuselages were actually going to Renton, which is just about five miles north of where I am. Boeing also has some facilities in Kent, as well.

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Old 03-29-08, 07:51 AM   #7
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Hedgeapple... Also a welcome from a fellow Kansan and former [as in since beginning of the year] Newtonian. I am now in Great Bend but remember the great streets for riding in Newton. That is not much trafffic, not that the streets are the greatest.
Hope you enjoy your "new" ride, now that it is fixed and ready to go...
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Old 03-29-08, 04:12 PM   #8
hedgeapple
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thanx floyd. remember the paths along sand creek? they just closed them, for 18 months, to rebuild the creek banks, which were about to give way under the path in some places. streets it'll be.
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Old 06-03-08, 02:34 PM   #9
hedgeapple
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Today, for the first time in 22 years, I rode my bicycle to work. 10.5 miles one-way, 50 minutes including a stop at Braum's to bag a breakfast burrito. 50/50 farm road/pavement, did it on the Rockhopper. Covered 3 miles in big gears on pavement with a light tailwind in 7'23", which works out to 22.38mph I think. I did another 6 miles running errands on the Raleigh between bus runs. Ate lunch, rode home, legs are tired. Weather and roads permitting, will do it again tomorrow.
Take that, Exxon. HOO-aahh!
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Old 06-03-08, 04:11 PM   #10
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Good on you! It's not nearly as bad as you think, and boy, does it save gas.

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Old 06-03-08, 04:28 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hedgeapple View Post
Today, for the first time in 22 years, I rode my bicycle to work. 10.5 miles one-way, 50 minutes including a stop at Braum's to bag a breakfast burrito. 50/50 farm road/pavement, did it on the Rockhopper. Covered 3 miles in big gears on pavement with a light tailwind in 7'23", which works out to 22.38mph I think. I did another 6 miles running errands on the Raleigh between bus runs. Ate lunch, rode home, legs are tired. Weather and roads permitting, will do it again tomorrow.
Take that, Exxon. HOO-aahh!
Awsome I live there too!
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