walking around in tap shoes and pyjamas since 2010 - my cycling log (opens in new window)

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

The Bikes (Or, My Commute Today Was Pretty But Uneventful)

At the moment, I ride one of three bikes on any given day. Two are mine; one belongs to my roomie, but I borrow it sometimes, since he commutes by car (his is a much better snow bike than either of mine). Mine are both commuters — one with front fork and seatpost suspension; one with no suspension — and his is a full-suspension mountain bike.

Swift is a recent purchase; now officially my primary commuter and 'touring' bike (if by 'touring,' we mean 'informally taking rides far longer than non-bike-people consider truly reasonable). I may eventually toss some drops on him and turn him into a randonneur, because randonneuring sounds fun if I ever stop being such a fatty. We'll see.

Swift's an older GT Legacy with a steel & chromoly frame: not a bike one runs into much in these parts (in fact, I've seen exactly one other GT around here: my old Arette, Evergreen II, who was stolen, after which I never saw her again). Swift has no shocks, nor bells or whistles of any kind (though I'll probably buy him a bell to alert canoodling PedXtrians to my presence on the multi-purpose trail). He's just a good, solid, quick, smooth ride. And I do mean quick. This bad boy shaves minutes off my commute in fives, when I feel like making an effort. Otherwise, he's just a truly effortless ride.

Traveller is my midweight urban-jungle hoss: 39 lbs of aluminum and sproing. He's a Schwinn Avenue with stealth Suntour front shocks and a seatpost shock. Traveller's a fun bike — a reasonably fast commuter with touring potential (as long as you're not trying to set any records), but also perfectly capable offroad.

He's also in a sorry state at the moment, having become permalocked to my house in the middle of winter. I believe his chain is now rusted solid (Yes -- I am suitably ashamed.) That's okay, though — I wanted to improve my bike mechanicking skills anyway. Yeah, dat's da ticket...

The Sproingbok is my roomie's bike. Based on the specs I've seen online, he may actually weigh less than Traveller, but I'm not sure. He's a Schwinn S60 DSX -- 30+ pounds of aluminum, full suspension, and amazingly flashy paintjob. Initially, I thought the paint was tacky. However, I'm ashamed to admit that it has grown on me over time.

I tend to think of the Sproingbok as the party animal of the lot. He's happiest rolling through big potholes, snow, or dirt. If the other two would respectively drink club soda with lemon (Swift) and coffee-black-no-sugar (Traveller), the Sproingbok would drink Heineken. Whilst performing a keg stand. Regardless of the fact that both his regular riders are teetotalers. I am sure of it.

Bikes don't have feelings, you say? Bikes are inanimate objects with no specific preferences, you say? Bikes don't drink, you say?

Hogwash. I'm not buying it. Okay, so maybe the Sproingbok isn't actually sneaking off to keg parties on Friday nights, when I'm cozily tucked into my bed, responsibly reading.

Then again, I can't prove he's not.

Note: I don't have pix of the bikes yet, except for Swift (I have shots from the guy who sold him to me). I'll post them ASAP, including one of poor, crippled Traveller in his current sorry state.

Additional Note: Yes, my bikes always have names and genders. How do I determine the latter? Who knows. I just decide, I guess ;) Are all my bikes always boys? No. Evergreen II, AKA THE BEST BIKE EVAR!!!!!, was a girl. So was Intrepid, the bike I had between Evergreen and Traveller, who was also stolen (my fault, that time -- locked her to a parking meter with a cable lock because I was in a hurry; stupid, stupid, stupid; the other theft involved heavy bolt cutters, dedicated thieves, and an entry door that was left unlocked by Persons Other Than Myself).

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