Browsed by
Author: Angel

How do you do….Bike Storage?

How do you do….Bike Storage?

Where the “Second Car” ought to be. (yay no 2nd car!)

It’s spring cleaning time and I’ve decided to tackle the garage first. Mostly because the bulk of my “possessions” (not clothing, books, or kid things) are in the garage….aka, my lovely bikes ūüôā

 

(See: Ella, Daisy, Galaxie, Gino (which is actually a long term loaner to the Hubs, but he still counts), and Free Loading Bike (a mountain bike who shall (for seriously) become my winter-ish bike). Not to mention the Foldy Twins, Damien’s Spider Man bike, and Liliana’s Trike. Oh…and 2 different trailers (one of which was turned into a storage center so all bikey bits stay in one place.) Some of these are admittedly in various states of needing work to be rideable)

I’ve hit a road block though. I’d like to find some more cohesive manner of storing them than stacked along the sides in a non-accessible way. Currently if I wanted to work on my Galaxie, I’d need to move at least 3 bikes, plus or minus a few kids bikes or parts.

The biggest problem I face is that I have a huge garage that I’d like to make as multi purpose as possible (aka on a rainy day, moving the mom-mobile and letting the kids ride around in the double garage would be fantastic). However, with my bike collection currently the opening is close to that of my van. So…not exactly great riding space.

Current options in stores or online seem to be aimed towards either apartment dwelling or bicycles with straight top tubes instead of my plethora of step through variants.

My biggest hindrance at this time is cost and time. I’d like something affordable and safe, but also don’t want to spend a month building something that will require me having to ask for tonnes of help. (aka my dad just left from a brief visit yesterday and I’m gonna guess he’ll be hesistant to come back out if his first “project” is bike sorting).

Current options that I am considering:

Canadian Tire sells simple vinyl coated hooks, meant for bike storage. They’re incredibly affordable ($0.94 each) and I’d like to think when used properly, would easily support a bicycle. I’m thinking some sort of staggered hook placement that each bike would need to be measured for before hand (thus every bike in it’s place?) but I’m not sure if my garage has the right spacing between studs to allow this to be done quickly and easily or if I’ll be building around them to make it work. (I guess this means going and measure precisely which bikes need which space and which can go where?)

My dad suggested using a pulley and some hooks to haul bikes up to the rafters. At first I thought this a brilliant idea until the only hooks I could find were a: uncoated or coated with an abrasive substance¬† and b: definitely not going to work for any bike except possibly Gino. So yes, he’d be up and out of the way, but he’s also the bike Hubs prefers to “ride”, aka foot along the paths with the kids with, so it’d be slightly impractical to put him up except for in winter.

So how do you store bikes? In home or garage? Did you build something up or do you do the “stack along the wall” method?

((ETA: Upon browsing Canadian Tire’s website for a link/photo of the desired cheap hook I found this:¬† Bicycle Lift. Anyone used something similar? It looks like it might actually work for all my bikes, which would potentially mean that, assuming they all are similar enough to not require adjustments all the time, it’d be a viable option to at least keep whichever is the currently least used bike up “out of the way”.))

On being (forced) car-free/car-less

On being (forced) car-free/car-less

Complete disclosure: I own/drive a mini van. Yes. I’m a mini van mom!

Most spring/summer/fall during not crap weather we’ll walk or bike where we can, and if I’m going downtown? Regardless of weather? I bus. Its easier, takes roughly 10 minutes more than a stress filled curse-laden drive. So…I bus. (When we bought our house we were a 1 child public transit family, it’s proximity -less than a 10 minute walk- to a semi-major transit station & incredibly near-ness to a downtown express route were HUGE selling points). Damien’s elementary school is exactly 1 km from our house so our plan was to walk/bike it as much as possible and then put him on the school bus (stop is on our corner) when the winter hits (I strongly strongly dislike winter driving).

Cue the weekend before Critical Lass: recovering from a cold I decide I need more vitamin C and make plans to meet with a friend, grab quick dinner, get errands done and get home all in time to put monster Lili to bed. After loading said Lili into her carseat, I get in, open the garage annnnd…the van won’t start. At all. It just makes a scary mechanical clicking noise, repeatedly. In tears I get out and walk to get fast food dinner, forget everything else and come home. Night does get better, but boo, seriously.

So…with nary a vehicle, we’ve now had 2 mornings where I’ve gotten rained on, quite heavily. Last week was worse. I chose to walk the kilometer to school thinking I’d keep more overall dry by not having my legs as exposed, avoiding puddles and splashes from cars, etc. WRONG! After the walk there and back I was SOAKED. Literally to the bone (if skin were that porous….)

Biked on the way to pick Damien, less soaked, less cold and kids happier. Since then unless I want to walk (ie it’s a nice warm morning) we’ve been biking. I can feel the difference now in my legs, and on days when my timing is a bit sooner than I’d like? Oh yes….I do indeed bike further, even in the rain ūüôā

******

Today was officially 10 days of walking or biking to school. I’ve gotten some crazy looks from parents and Damien’s teacher asked why I chose to bike, until I pointed out it’s faster and easier with 2 kids in tow.

Noticeable pros: classmates are totally interested in what the kids do while in the trailer. I was asked whether my legs were tired, how long it took, if it was hard to do, what colour Damien’s helmet was, etc etc etc.

I sadly haven’t noticed many other (read: any) bikes or even bike parking at the school, I plan to investigate further, but if we have no bike racks I might suddenly start harping to get them…I’d love for Damien to bike himself come warmer weather….supposed that can “wait” though.

(More disclosure: van should hopefully be getting repaired soon….at which point I plan on changing NOTHING. I like these rides, I don’t have to find parking, and the speed difference over walking totally justifies it for me. We’ll see how long the weather allows this (I’m not worried about the kids, they can have blankets and snow suits and layers) but my cold-resistance isn’t very good….I hold little hope for months more of biking, but another month would be nice!)

If I Ride

If I Ride

Very simple post tonight, apologies for my personal absence lately, wedding & now a major sick to fight off = no time for blogging (barely fit in biking!)

This video though, says enough!

Enjoy!!

(PS: bear with us as we mess around with a redesign for easier readability around here!)

Whoops! (Introducing… Salmon Ella, a Sears Free Spirit mixte)

Whoops! (Introducing… Salmon Ella, a Sears Free Spirit mixte)

Salmon Ella! (Ella for short)
Oopsie. I bought a mixte.
It appears that I have a bicycle fetish, in addition to my shoe fetish.
(At least she was only $30.)
The photos really don’t do her paint colour justice.
Where it has been scraped you can see the red undercoat under the pearlized salmon-pink topcoat.
Headbadge decal.
Decal on bottom tube.
Assembled In Canada decal. I wonder what the numbers mean?
The frame serial number is stamped into the rear fork.
The drop bars are stamped SAKAE CUSTOM JAPAN and ROAD CHAMPION.
Sakae Ringyo (or SR) are a Japanese parts-maker according to Sheldon Brown,
and their parts may allow me to find a date for this bike based on this article from Vintage Trek.I added a huge, loud ding-dong bell (seen in the drop bar picture above)
while I was at EBC with my SIL replacing the brake pads:

Right now the bars are wrapped with cotton tape, which looks incredible
but I am not finding very comfortable, so I will need to test out alternatives then rewrap.
The rubber hoods over the hand brakes are still pretty supple despite the cracks visible here.
The bottom bracket, chainwheel and pedal parts are stamped SAKAE as well,
with CUSTOM-A stamped on the cranks (which are cotterless).
Shimano Altus derailleur
Rear cogs and rear derailleur also stamped Shimano.
CHANG-STAR U brakes.
Aluminum rear mudguard (the front one is missing).
Aren’t the rims pretty? The tires are marked
CHENG SHIN
CST SUPER HP
INFLATE TO 90 PSI
28-630 ( 27 x 1 1/8 )
Vinyl spring mattress saddle.

So, my first trip on Ella was awkward but fun. Having (barely) ridden my SIL’s very gorgeous Italion Fiori fancy & expensive road bike (another Kijiji find, we’re just lucky :P), I was prepared for the angle and difference in feel of the bike when compared with Daisy or other “normal” bikes…what I was NOT prepared for though was the difference with the frame vs hers. My frame feels slightly more forgiving than a rigid road bike, and I’m going to guess that’s probably not all in my head? After reading a few posts on Lovely Bicycle! about drop bars, racing bikes, etc, I’m totally enamoured with the different workout I get. On Saturday (a picnic party in a park!) I did roughly 5km (2 laps of Hawrelak park road which I’ve discovered is 2.4 km plus biking around and going over the bridge to the zoo) and definitely felt a new muscle “ache”. I say ache because it wasn’t really ache so much as a noticeable change in which muscles were used. It’s GREAT!!

Downside to Ella’s mixte frame (I’m reaching for these):

  • ¬†Her angles are definitely different from what I’m used to, so when I tried to step through…lets say it was weird. It’s not impossible to doing a rolling dismount, it just will take practice.
  • Because of the double bars the width of the “top” bars is more than I was expecting, especially when having to hop off quickly because some idiot car cuts you off…you know? So I have a large (1″ by 6″) bruise on my inner thigh. It’ll heal, and it’s good for bragging rights ūüėõ
  • The tires are high pressure which means they absorb nothing. Which is fine so long as you lift up when going down the bumpiest/potholiest roads EVER. Lesson learned!

All in all I’m IN LOVE. Seriously, the difference in muscles used and the awesome speed completely justify the total of $40 invested thus far.

Things I need to think about:

  • new wrap on the bars, have you any suggestions? I had a sore palm after my first “big” ride but I think that was more new positions. I do know I need to lower my seat a bit and fix the angle properly so I’m not using my arms and hands as much.
  • new seat. This is an “eventually” since her seat is actually pretty decent. In a perfect world I think I’d be getting a Brooks…but that might be a save up and take my time to get.
  • front fender. I might just do away with it for the time being, I’d like something matching IF I were to put a fender on, so maybe I’ll be looking to buy some pretty ones online…Ohhhh the possibilities!

I really think that’s it, unless I’m missing something drastically needing replacement? Yikes?

What a lovely day.

What a lovely day.

(This post is actually cowritten by Angel and Deborah with additional photographs by Nicki.)

Yesterday afternoon we went on our scaled-down suburban¬†Critical Lass¬†ride. It’s the first weekend of Fringe Fest, and it was women-and-transgendered day at EBC BikeWorks, and some people were probably nervous about leaving the city’s central neighborhoods by bicycle, so we had a smaller group than last time. Miss Sarah has already blogged about the ride from her perspective – if you haven’t already seen it check out her post too.

We met up at the playground closest to Deborah’s house, in a subdivision where the houses are a mix of faux-Victorian, -Georgian, and -Craftsman houses, like Halifax or Victoria rerendered in vinyl siding and concrete. We like it because the sidewalks, front porches, and garages placed on back alleys make it a more pedestrian-friendly area than the typical suburban front-garage development. Some of the bikes you see in the photo above belong to other families who had brought their kids to the park.

Bert isn’t fixed yet. So, we put Audrey’s trailer-bike on a borrowed 1980s CCM 5-speed named Violet (Thank you Monica!!! -D.). As you can see in the foreground of the photo above, Deb used basket straps to put her antique egg crate on the front – which really affected the steering once it had a heavy purse and water bottles in it. (I don’t think I’ll use the crate that way again, as pretty as it looks. -D.)



Angel adding some air while everyone chats.

Winnie’s coaster brake isn’t fixed yet, so Nicki borrowed Mary Poppins and Deb’s polkadot helmet for the ride. Both bikes have 28-inch wheels and coaster brakes, so it was a good way to get her back in the saddle. This was her first time riding a bicycle in nearly ten years. Felt good, didn’t it, gorgeous?

Angel rode Daisy. In the end neither of her kids came – Damien was hanging with his grandparents and Lili needed a nap. Notice the green purse in the milk crate that matches one of the shades of green in her floral dress. Dress and sandals both from Reitmans (different seasons) purse is from random mall luggage store. Would LOVE to find a lovely belt to make the dress less poofy (even though the poof comes in handy while biking in the heat, yaaaay built in “AC”). – A.

Sarah was kidless too, thanks to the older LRT cars not being able to accommodate a child trailer without taking the child out and folding it up. We can’t imagine doing that solo with a wiggly baby! Here she has just put a CL pin on one of her polka dots. LOVE the skirt and the pearl necklace.

These women are effortlessly chic. Marilyn was wearing a beautiful shirt-dress with a pop of ruffly colour underneath. So classic. (I can’t wait ’til my Uniform Project shirt-dress arrives in the mail. -D.)

Of course it is all about the shoes. Clockwise from top left: Sarah in shiny patent leather; Audrey in pink and Deborah with bows on; Angel’s new silver flats; and Marilyn’s divine Dr Marten’s heels (covet!).

Just kidding. It’s also all about the bikes. Here is Sarah’s road bike at rest, with a Brooks leather saddle and reflective super-skinny rims and the beautiful Po Campo bag she’s been trying out.

Mary Poppins awaiting action. Look how pretty the white saddlebag looks with the white vinyl saddle!

Audrey (the only child who ended up coming) didn’t feel like staying at the playground, so we were quickly off on our ride and didn’t stop at any of the other four playgrounds on our route (yes, four). We headed to a strip-mall area with a lot of cafes and restaurants and neat little shops. On the way, we were riding mostly on residential streets, where one driver was unconscionably rude, and a few were clueless about driving around bicycles, but many were great.

We parked our bikes at the library. It was disappointing to see so few racks in a relatively newly-built area, when ¬†according to the bylaws they should be more. Guess we’ll need to call the mall’s management and ask some questions? Then we sat in a franchise cafe and had iced strawberry lemonade and a wide-ranging chat. During which we totally forgot to take photos. Oops. It was delightful to be able to all sit at the same table this time and really get to talk. Unfortunately Sarah and Marilyn needed to take off after the cafe and head back to the LRT, so they didn’t get to shop. Also, the locally-owned toy store has just closed this location (much to Audrey’s disappointment). However, Angel found a great locally-owned kitchen tool shop where she can register for her wedding. Score!

Audrey took this shot of Deborah in the cafe’s washroom. She is wearing windowpane-check bermuda shorts from Ricki’s, a ruffled scoop-neck t-shirt from Old Navy, a thrift-shop straw-and-leather bag, a gold-plated necklace and fabric flower from Anthropologie, a cloche from local Etsy crafter Sugar Soul to cover the helmet-head.

Audrey did magnificently, especially considering that it was only her second time riding without training wheels (her first was the day before when we were testing the trailer-bike on Violet). We walked the uphills because she felt unsteady when I had to stand on the pedals. We think she’ll be riding without training wheels on her own bike by the end of the summer. Oh, and yes, she did choose her outfit specifically to go with the pins for the riders, then lavishly accessorized it Fancy Nancy style. -D.

Attempted panda shot. I am wearing an older sport-style helmet that has never fit my head properly. It is actually not possible with the way it is shaped to get it to sit over my forehead… but it’s a decent slightly-small backup when loaning helmets to friends who forgot theirs. – D.
View of downtown Edmonton from the bridge over Terwillegar Drive. It’s rather pretty, except for the freeway and utility poles in the foreground – and it gives a nice idea of how sprawled out this city is. Our location here is about halfway between the inner ring road (the Whitemud) and outer ring road (the Henday).¬†¬†

Taking pictures at the end of the pedestrian bridge.

Nicki, Deborah, and Audrey walking up the hill. Angel was able to ride up with Daisy’s 6 speed!
They made it!!

Nicki and the downtown view.

Despite being on the outer edge of town, many of our city’s suburban neighborhoods are blessed with a well-planned system of multiuse trails, and most of them have sidewalks as well. Wide roads with two lanes in each direction on the collector roads make it less nerve-wracking to take the lane when needed than on some of the narrower roads in the city’s core, and some of the¬†collector roads are having sharrows painted on them¬†that will help to make road-sharing more of a habit for suburban drivers. It may not be practical to go completely car-free, and it takes a little planning, but we think that using a bike instead of a motor vehicle so that you’re driving less often is totally doable in the suburbs. Not to mention fun!

To end the ride we headed back to Deborah’s, where some other friends with children met us for a barbeque. Good food and good friends, what could be better?

Gino & Wrenches….Wrenches & Gino

Gino & Wrenches….Wrenches & Gino

The night of the bike exploration, Daisy gave me a fright. I thought I’d gotten a flat….pumped her up using Mary Poppins’ frame pump and it seemed to do no good. I wasn’t sure if it was where we were trying (by the duck pond)¬† so when we got back to the house I sat outside and tried again….and it seemed good….for a block. So I tried…AGAIN…and it seemed good….until we got to the school. You see where this is going? Yeah…our ride of 6km took longer than necessary….yet Daisy’s tire never went FLAT…just…flat. Does that make sense? Sure it does.

So… I’d never changed or repaired a flat, but my sister-in-law has, many many many times. Over last weekend, I took Daisy over, we took off her tire (thank god it was the front!), and she taught me how to check for a leak (in case you were wondering, there were NONE) and then how to “patch” (in theory), and finally we put everything back together.

Relevance, you may ask?

Gino. (Remember¬†Gino?) Yeah… his front tire needed work waaaay back in January… and then 40 other bikes (slight exaggeration) came through our lives while he languished in storage and Deb found a replacement for his missing front fender. He languishes no longer!

Deborah brought him over the other night, along with a patch kit and a replacement tube of the right size for just-in-case, and her knowledge gleaned from YouTube videos (thanks MEC!) and faint childhood memories of her Dad fixing flats on her sister’s ten-speed. Between us, with our combined learnings, we had enough clues to fix Gino’s flat ourselves (much to the shock and delight of an elderly gentleman who was walking by and offered his help)!

The hardest part of the process was loosening the bolts. One of them had been tightened with super-mechanic-powers and getting it started meant me leaning on the wrench with all my weight while Deb held the bike still with all her weight.

At the same time as we took the front (flat) tire off, we also installed the very very very shiny new fender. (Deb thinks it’s made by Wald if anyone is looking for something similar.) The rest of Gino will need the lemon-and-aluminum treatment to get him even remotely as handsome as that fender. Maybe we need to take him for a ride in the mud and get the new fender a little grimy and scratchy first.

The old tube. See where the old patch is, right beside the valve? It’s starting to let go, and when you squeezed the tube another hole was visible right beside the patch. We had already suspected that a tear beside the valve might be the problem, since the valve was coming out of the hole in the rim at a 45 degree angle (instead of perpendicular to it). So rather than patching, we discarded the tube entirely and used the new one instead.

In a perfect world we would’ve replaced the tape in the rim too…but it wasn’t in HORRIBLE condition at all, I’m sure it’ll do just fine until Gino needs more loving!

Hand pumping with an old frame pump is quite a workout.

Hand pumping with an old frame pump that needs the seal (aka “leather”) replaced inside it is even more of a workout. When we realized it was taking an awfully long time to fill the tube, I also realized that Deborah’s pump sounds different from my father-in-law’s almost-identical-looking frame pump, as in, not as much air was coming out. Switching pumps did the trick. (I guess there will be a future post on how to fix an old frame pump?).

After¬† finishing, we gave it a test ride for other issues. The bottom bracket feels pretty smooth. With the twenty-inch wheels, we never really get to straighten our knees when we’re riding. That would be a problem for everyday rides, but this will be perfect for feet-on-the-ground balance-bike-style slow slow riding with my little ones on their bikes (they’re five and two, so, not riding very fast yet).

(25 July Update: this is me doing a quick demonstration of how I could use Gino with my feet on the ground. Obviously I’d wear shoes and a helmet in real life. And also, not have a swollen and painful knee. ¬†Hmm, Gino’s front fender could use adjusting.)

We figure with a good cleaning and some black hockey tape or electrical tape as a temporary fix for the tears in the banana seat, plus a bell (they’re required by law here in Edmonton), Gino is ready to ride! And we did it ourselves! Total cost: 1 hour of our time, less than $5 for the replacement tube at Canadian Tire, less than $20 for the fender on eBay, and the $40 we paid for Gino on Kijiji.

Oh, wrenches! I also got these great socket wrenches at the wonderland that is Princess Auto.

Notice that they’re both Metric & SAE? (Apparently SAE in sizing LITERALLY translates into Non-Metric sizing) I see these coming in VERY handy for fixing bikes who might have those odd little parts….not so much the Raleighs, but oh, we have a lovely spanner that Deb got for Mary Poppins, so we “should” be set….ha.

Exploration & Errands all in one! (LGRAB Summer Games post 6)

Exploration & Errands all in one! (LGRAB Summer Games post 6)

Today I’m blogging about exploring a new part of town, as part of the New Territory section of¬†the LGRAB Summer Games.

So last night I ventured over to Deborah’s for a bike ride with her and Audrey.

Audrey on the used bike she got for her birthday.
First we did the short route through Deb’s subdivision that we’re planning to use for a picnic expedition with the kids, around Tomlinson Park and into the park beside the stormwater pond off Thibault Way, and back home to drop off Audrey with her dad. Then we went to see the new school (Monsignor William Irwin Elementary) that Audrey will attend when it opens this fall. It has lots of sweet bike rack space, and reserved parking stalls for carpools and electric vehicles!
Then we headed out of Terwillegar Towne via Towne Centre Boulevard to 23rd Avenue, where we took the multiuse path to the corner of Rabbit Hill Road where the strip malls and grocery stores are clustered. There are actually some pretty interesting shops and restaurants in those strips, so we’ll probably make them a destination again sometime.
 
Me and Daisy posing as the sun set by the recently-opened Leger transit hub on 23rd Avenue, 
with the new recreation centre that’s under construction in the background.¬†

The girls, with their faux-flower decorated crates, parked outside the grocery store. 
There was no bike parking outside the cafe where we stopped for strawberry lemonade smoothies (tsk tsk).
By the time we had grabbed our groceries, it was twilight, and we don’t have headlamps (yet!), so we walked our bikes across the intersection at the lights and rode back to Deb’s taking the same route through the big neighborhood park that she already described.

We saw a family of bunnies!
Here is our actual route: a loop of about 6.2 km (3.8 miles) according to GoogleMaps.
Father’s Day Hauling! (LGRAB Summer Games post 3)

Father’s Day Hauling! (LGRAB Summer Games post 3)

Today I’m blogging about carrying a load as part of the Learning Experiences section of¬†the LGRAB Summer Games.


Yesterday was Father’s Day, and since I only had Lili home (Damien regularly spends his Saturdays with his grandparents, I’m not complaining at all!) I figured I’d leave her at home and go get a few groceries on my own with Daisy.

First though, Daisy needed more carrying capacity. Deborah donated a LOVELY red “milk” crate. Which we think might actually be just a plastic crate as there’s a barely readable tag (dollar store or random flea market variety price tag). Either way, it’s gorgeous!

Here’s hubs doing the (reusable) zip-tie attachement:

Because my butt is big (total disclosure!) I didn’t want the crate RIGHT against my seat so we used the existing rack to kind of pull the crate in a few different directions, and then added side ones to stop side-to-side shakes.

Then I pedaled my way to the closest grocery store. En route I had to wait for an ambulance to turn towards the hospital, turns out an elderly lady had fallen across the street from said hospital, causing a mini traffic jam. I know it’s bad, but because I had the option and didn’t want to wait in all the backed up traffic and because I was able to, I jumped off Daisy and just walked her on the sidewalk. I stay well out of the way of the ambulance workers and other helpers, but I ended up well ahead of all the cars trying to maneuver around a 4-way stop filled with an ambulance. Biking 1 – Cars NADA!

Anyway, arrived at the grocery store, and locked Daisy up!

Considering my location I was pretty surprised to find NOBODY else had bothered to bike ANYWHERE in the area…I was actually kind of saddened. Anyway, Daisy’s crate held all our groceries (including a 4L jug of milk) no problem, I just need to get some bungee cords to hold things down better.

I didn’t manage to get a picture when I got home because Daisy’s kickstand, well it sucks for holding loads, which means I’m in the market for a double kickstand, I figure it’ll be beneficial both with the kids behind me and a full pair of baskets.

Side: Saturday I rode with my sister-in-law and Damien down to our Bikeology Festival Day & other downtown proceedings. It was a BLAST! They closed a bunch of blocks of downtown streets and had various activities, including bike demos, parkour-style bike tricks, bike fixing, and then further down, MEC had a few things, the YMCA had kid-friendly stuff (Damien got “face” painting, played in a pool and did a Zoomba demo with us) plus probably a MILLION other things I missed.

It was really fun and AWESOME to see the amount of people out on bikes taking advantage of the fact that motor vehicles weren’t allowed but bikes were! YAAAY Edmonton!!

Stanley, the BlackHAWK mystery bike

Stanley, the BlackHAWK mystery bike

Look what $10 can buy you off Kijiji!

Before Cleaning or really doing much more than ogling!

unmarked coaster brake
headbadge decal: BlackHAWK, Made In Canada, MW
(not to be confused with the UK’s Blackhawk Bikes, formed in 2006)
(top before lemon juice, bottom after!)
front forks, similar but not identical to CCM Galaxie
gorgeous flower chainwheel with five-point symmetry, 
after removing rust from cottered cranks and chainwheel

tires: SUPER-LASTIC 26 x 1 1/2
wheel rims:

Both pretty rusty, but at least they’re the same right?
(V160 – Made In Canada – 26 x 1 1/2 F12)
mysterious D mark on underside of bottom bracket
(the left and right rear forks were also marked L and R, respectively)
serial number stamped onto seatpost (does not match CCM’s format)
crappy rusted-out vinyl-covered seat
gorgeous glass reflector with metal casing – possibly older, and certainly rustier, than the bike

handlebars, before and after cleaning with lemon juice and aluminum foil, 
and RustCure and extrafine steel wool (which was handy for getting into crevices this time)
We discovered while removing the rust that the paint on frame is very easily rubbed right off… like, there’s just one thin coat of it… so this bike is a great candidate for repainting the frame and possibly also the wheels.
And here it is after a few hours of talk, boys playing and chit chat – with some cleaning in there. I cannot wait to attack the rims with lemon juice this weekend!!

We both took it for a spin around my garage but I’ll be honest, 26″ wheels? Maybe in some strange “just kidding” world? I rode it right after picking it up and thought to myself, “Wow, this is tiny!” So when doing a quick measure at home I assumed it had 24″ wheels. The handle bars add to the smallness factor, they’re obviously tilted WAY downwards (enough to hit our knees when pedalling!). Hopefully learning to fix them and a new saddle will fix all these problems?

Other things:

Pretty sure that the bottom bracket will need repacking…it feels..I’d say grainy? Not incredibly noticeable but there enough so I know it’s not 100% good and clean. Hopefully nothing as disturbing as Bert’s Problems¬† but hey, if it is, we’ll be sure to get photographic evidence of the beeswax and other disturbances!!

The amount of rust everywhere is disturbing, but aside from the bit at the top of the front forks I think most of it is surface enough to not cause mass panic. Of course this could prove to be a big error on our parts but….all part of the learning process!

Edit by Deborah:


About the name: the Chicago Blackhawks just won the Stanley Cup, and we are hockey-crazy Canadians. (Screw you Pronger!)


Also, there is no information anywhere online about the BlackHAWK marque. We’re guessing that this is a cheapo department-store brand, and that’s why it hasn’t been documented. Based on the fork similarity to the Galaxie we think Stanley might be from the 60s or 70s, but honestly we have no clue. If anyone knows anything at all, please share it in the comments.

Are YOU Ready!?!?

Are YOU Ready!?!?

Daisy sure is, new saddle installed this afternoon and her basket is about to be installed (waiting for littlest to fall asleep!)

 Helmet, Bell, Cup Holder
 Freshly home for installation!
On the way home for installation

I thought some reminders would be helpful!

  1. Dress comfortable! It’s gonna be warm so you don’t want to sweat to death!
  2. Wear your helmet!
  3. Bring a lock!
  4. Water bottle!
  5. Be smart, be safe!!
  6. HAVE FUN!!!
{ ROUTE TIMING INFO: 1pm arrive at EBC (10047-80 Ave –¬†remember it’s the back alley entrance!); 1:15 depart for Velo Polo at¬†Ritchie Community League Rink, 98 St + 77 Ave,¬†1:30-2:00 cheer on the bike polo players & take some photos, 2ish depart for Da Capo / Transcend /SugarBowl via Saskatchewan Drive for a 2:30ish coffee break then carry on through the University-Belgravia area and back down to Fuss Cupcakes on Whyte for 3ish – edit by Deborah }

I am SOOO excited for this!! SO! Excited!!

Post-Edit:

She’s READY!!!