Monatsarchiv: April 2011
Runjoo and Asesh are one of the nicest couples I ever met. Originally from Nepal, we met in 1994 when we were working on a dam construction site on the Yellow River in China called Xiaolangdi (Map). Even 17 years later my memory is that of a pretty miserable place, where the best thing one could possible do to spend one’s time was to sleep. Eating, drinking or riding a bike were no real options. Friends like Runjoo and Asesh helped us to survive.
While we continued to move around the world a bit and ended up in Bremen after a long stay in Japan, Runjoo and Asesh stayed in China for some more years before they moved around in the world until today. I cannot even remember all the countries they have lived in, but Runjoo continues to write long letters and emails about their experiences and sends photos. This makes me think about countries or areas I haven’t been thinking about too much and where my knowledge is basically a small, neatly packaged bundle of prejudices: Sawarak (Malaysia), New-Caledonia and lately Sudan.
They have been staying in Sudan for perhaps a year now and as the internet connection to their construction in Damazine (Map) is pretty bad or non-existing, infos have been scare recently. I got a mail today and some nice photos. Like this one, showing the „TV-Rock“.
TV Rock could be the background for a flintstone movie. And of course there are cycles also in this part of the world.
I am already very curious where Runjoo and Ashesh will end up next.
During the dark and cold winter months in Bremen I developed a love for old bicycle parts. The magic letters are N.O.S. the abbreviation for „New, old stock“.
It seems that people or history tends to forget small things.. And that suddenly, these small and insignificant things from the past turn up in the present and now they have become significant for some of us. Well, perhaps not to the same scale as we would welcome the return of the original amber room from the palace in Petersburg that went missing in 1944 or 1945. And our previous girlfriends (3 or 4 in my case) will not return in their original shape and age. Luckily.
However, there are batches of batches of old cycling parts somewhere out there and it is rather tempting to buy them like pieces from an old puzzle and hunt for the remaining puzzle pieces. And finally one will be able to see the complete picture.
Here are some examples from recent purchases.
|Lyotard pedales. Not sure which type or year.|
Lyotard was one of these French companies. They invented a special pedal (Marcel Berthier) in the twenties and basically continued to produce the same designs well into the eighties until they went belly up. This will be a nice addition to any of my old steel frame commuting bikes.
An older Olmo stem from 3ttt with the Italian flag engraved in the upper side. Italian brands are my favourite. Not Pinarello or Colnago, but smaller steel frame builders such as Botecchia, Chesini, Ciocc, Somec and many others. I still have an old Moser frame in area 51 and wonder what I should do with it. The handle bar clap on this stem can be completely opened, so one doesn’t need to fiddle the bare handlebar through the hole. This allows also for different handles with premounted brake levers to be assembled on the same bike. I love this piece so much that I am going to assemble a bike around this stem.
A Shimano 600 AX series front wheel hub. This is a piece from the first aerodynamic craze in the Eighties. It is set that the arrangement of spokeholes which determinates which spoke has to be on the inside and which on the outside is made in such way with the wave shaped rim, to allow for minimum air resistance. What nonsenses, but it surely looks good.
In addition to the hub which I am thinking to use to built up some extreme aero wheels, I have purchased a complete Shimano 600AX group set last week.
And last but not least one of my favourite, a clamp type shifter from the Shimano Golden Arrow groupset the predecessor of the 10-5 series.
I just packed my Cervelo and will bring it to the post office tomorrow. A guy in Holland bought it.
The Cervelo was a good bike. I bought the frame in December 2007 and then one by one I also bought all the components to assemble the complete bike. Nagai-San put everything nicely together. In 2009 I made one upgrade from Shimano 6600 to 6700 mainly because I liked the routing of the shifting cables along the handle bar.
This bike took me to a lot of nice places. We went down together fast and made longish uphill rides. The last one was with Juliane and David on Mallorca. Unfortunately I am too heavy for this bike, or well, after three seasons and perhaps 30.000 km I manged to crack the seatpost tube. Perhaps this is what can be expected from a high performance frame.
And perhaps I could have repaired it. Even Titanium frames can be repaired these days. But I have laid my eyes on something new already. Will blog about the new bike once the frame is here.
|Crack on the left side developing from the round „stress-relieve“ cut-out at the end of the slit.|
|..and a second crack in the same location on the right side.|
Ups, just noticed that this is the 1.000th post on this blog, so I better write something good.
Juliane, David and me travelled in late March to the island of Mallorca where we hold the traditional PEE spring training camp (since 2011). It is impossible to recount all the things we did there, but basically we slept, drank, ate and rode our bikes. Mainly the last one. We also hat a lot of good food. Within one week we rode 750 km and more than 10.000 elevation meters. We left the island one day before pure exhaustion would have prevented us to travel at all.
I had a lot of prejudices about Mallorca before arriving. In particular I thought that this is a part of Germany, where the elderly and the drunk terrorize the Aborigines. Wrong. This is a wonderful island with mountains, ocean, sun (MOS), perfect roads and friendly people. There were hundreds of cyclists out on the roads, mostly Germans, but also some Austrians, Swiss and Norwegians.
|David with 5 litre water bottle.|
|Rest day (accidentally). On the beach.|
|Coastline at cape formenta or so.|
Most importantly, after Mallorca we felt much more confident about tackling the Transalp in summer.
|Picnic somewhere in the mountains,. Please note the red shotgun cartridge.|
|Juliane in good mood with 1 litre water bottle.|
|Last ride for my Cervelo. Frame is broken. The perfect spot for bicycle suicide.|
|Eduourd Manet: Le dejeneuer sur l’herbe. Or perhaps BowWowWow.|
|David, too fast for the rest of us.
Close to the Col des Reines, 682m. The road down to the sea on teh otehr side is spectacular.
Deia. Before lunch.
Mountain roads on Mallorca.
Riding down to the sea. David.
|Mob racing with David, a close second.|