Tuesday, December 15, 2015

bike porn: 1970 raleigh fireball

It stopped raining yesterday, and I went for a bike ride to Velo Cult to see a new batch of vintage bikes they just got in.

Here's a few shots for your viewing pleasure. First up, a 1970 Raleigh Fireball, which is apparently super-rare. This one is minty-delicious.

Who knew Brooks made saddles like this?

Raleigh Twenty, all original.

Below: Velo Cult rando bike, custom built by Mark Nobilette.
The ride home was brisk (39F) but dry, and provided a beautiful winter sunset along the way.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

keep riding anyway, no matter how long or short

I got some interesting news from my GI doc last week. My Crohn's disease, which I've had most of my life, is getting progressively more intense.

This is not a surprise. When I had my surgery fifteen years ago, the doctors reminded me that surgery would not cure me, and that I could expect a re-intensifying of the disease (most likely at the same location) later on.

So I wasn't surprised, but I was sort of bummed. Intensifying of Crohn's helps explain my decreased energy and lack of interest in daily riding (especially in cold weather). It means, among various things, that I willr equire a stronger medication regimen, one that will compromise my immune system slightly and make me more susceptible to colds and such. It will mean that I cannot push myself too hard on my bike anymore, for fear of triggering an auto-immune response that could land me in bed. And it could mean a few others things, depending on the drug selected and its side-effects. There are almost always side effects with these stronger drugs.


What's a gal to do? Well, for now the answer is: Keep riding when I can. If the weather's especially nasty and I decide I'm not up for it, I try not to get down on myself. But if it's dry and not too cold, I go out, believing that even a very short ride -- to the store and back, or whatever -- is better than nothing.

To help encourage myself, I've done a little puttering on the All-Rounder, including adding a basket and swapping in some beautiful old stem shifters.

 (I pulled the Shimano "beehive" thumbies because while I still love them, they take up too much room on the bars for me to have a bell and rear-view mirror there. Plus, money's tight. So they're for sale. You can see them over at my Flickr page.)

Took a short ride today, to a coffee shop and home again. It was dry and overcast, and not too cold (high near 50F). It was nice to just ride around the neighborhood. It felt good to spin the cranks and glide along quiet side streets, while southbound geese honked overhead to remind me that winter is here.

Tonight we'll light the first candle of Chanukah.

May this season bring you warmth, light, health and peace.

Happy riding.

Friday, December 4, 2015

The case for flat pedals in a clipless pedal world

I tried clipless pedals back in the late 90s when I dabbled in road racing and time trialing. I will say that I only had one mishap while trying to unclip where I actually fell over. Still, I never felt entirely happy riding with them and eventually went back to clips and straps.

Clipless pedals are for racers. That's my opinion, not some holy writ.
But if you think about it, it makes sense. If you go clipless, you need to buy pedals, special shoes, and, periodically, replacement cleats. There's a trial period while you dial in the right fit (and if you don't know what you're doing, take it to a shop or you'll do some serious damage to your knees). And in the end you can spend between $200 and $400 to get set up (including a bare-bones adjustment session at your local shop, because they charge for that stuff).

Clips and straps, the way many of us rode before around 1989 or so, remains a reliable option. Your foot has some more wiggle room if you don't cinch the straps down tight -- and the only reason to do that is if you race, and if you race you've probably moved on to clipless pedals anyway, so it's moot.

In which case, why not just go all the way and install flat pedals on your bike?
Seriously, if all you do is ride for fun and transportation, flat pedals will do just fine. They come in all shapes and widths; accommodate almost any kind of shoe from heels to boots; and allow your foot to move naturally while you pedal, constantly readjusting along the way and preventing some knee and ankle injuries (because your foot isn't locked in one position).

There a literally hundreds of different styles of flat pedal out there. Here are a few that are proven to work well:

1. XLC alloy mountain pedals. These can be found at many bike shops as a budget alternative to the fancier pedals. Designed and supplied by Seattle Bike Supply (a wholesaler), they are solidly made and pretty reliable for their sub-$20 price (most shops retail them for around $15 a pair). When I worked at Citybikes we brought these in and they became so popular with customers and staff alike that we had trouble keeping them in stock.

2. MKS "Lambda" pedals. Available everywhere for an average price of $60 retail. Designed and sold by Rivendell Bicycle Works under the name "Grip King", these pedals are not my personal favorite, but some riders I know swear by them. A nice hack is to drill out a few of the craters and install self-tapping pins for extra traction.


3. VP-001 Pedals. Sold by Rivendell as "Thin Gripster" pedals. but available elsewhere online and in shops at an average price of $80 retail. I ran this pedal on my All-Rounder for several months. Sealed bearings, replaceable pins and a lower profile make this a very nice pedal. One drawback is the raised "hump" in the middle, a result of the low profile (you still need space inside for the spindle); It's not my choice for long distances, but for a ten-mile spin around town it's fine.


4. Redline Lo-profile sealed platform pedals.  At a price of around $45 retail, this is by far the best value in the bunch. This design is one variation on a theme made and sold under hundreds of makes/models. Very likely made in the same factory as similar pedals sold under "Wellgo" and other brands. The sealed bearings are smooth after break-in, and the platform is comfortable on longer rides because the profile isn't so low as to require a "hump" for the spindle inside. These have become my favorite flat pedals. I have them on both of my upright bikes now and they are super-comfy and grippy. If you're on a budget, there's a version of these with molded pins and loose bearings for less than half the cost. They're just as comfortable but will require overhauling much sooner.

5. I would remiss if I didn't mention the MKS RMX pedals. They're not for everyone, especially those of us in wetter climates (there's just not enough traction in the rain for my liking). But they are a pretty comfortable platform, and among the more affordable "brand name" pedals out there. They're totally fine if you live outside the rainy Pac NW. Some folks really like their looks, too.


Platform pedals make riding simpler and easier for non-racers. If you need to keep your shoes dry in the rain, wear shoe covers, galoshes or Rivendell Splats. (I prefer the Splats because they come in different sizes and allow my sole to remain uncovered and in full contact with the pedal for the most traction in the rain.)
If you're really paranoid about traction in wet weather, do what my friend does and apply skateboard grip tape to the surface (especially good if your platform pedals have no pins).

Flat pedals also give your bike a nice clean look, a small thing but in my book still a perk.
(Below: Sweetie's bike with very basic flat pedals)
Happy riding!

Saturday, November 21, 2015

simple upgrade: add a basket

The mini-rack that had long been on the front of my All-Rounder was simply not living up to any real standard of usefulness. So last week, I scored a Wald basket and today I swapped it in.

If you're thinking of a basket for your bike, look no further than Wald USA.
Wald is over a hundred years old, based in Kentucky, and makes really excellent bicycle baskets.

I've used a few of them over the years:

My Peugeot city bike rocked a Wald detachable basket on the front.
It was handy for a sweater, a sack lunch or library books.
I built this bike up in around 2004.
I still miss it terribly today.
Above: me on the Kogswell Porteur prototype I got to test-build in 2006. I built it up on a tight budget, and could not afford a fancy porteur front rack; so I installed the biggest Wald basket I could buy, and stuffed it to capacity. While it was wobbly going with all the weight, I liked the capacity anyway. Eventually, I decided that 650b wheels really weren't all that, and sold the bike to a friend.

These days, I ride a Rivvy All-Rounder that came to me about eight years ago as a frameset. I ride the crap out of it, basically, and these days that consists of shorter-distance, mostly daily rides around town. So when I decided to junk the mini-rack, my obvious choices was -- yup -- another Wald basket. This one is a smaller sized detachable model, the 3114, which doesn't seem to be available at Wald's web site (but you can find it in many bike shops, as I did).

Below: The All-Rounder with its new basket. (Yes, I am aware that it looks startlingly similar to my old Peugeot. I really loved that bike.)

One issue with these mounting brackets is the support bracket rubbing against the head tube whenever you turn the handlebars. I've seen bikes where the basket support bracket had ground against the head tube so much that the paint had worn away and the bracket had begun to wear away the metal.

I knew I'd have to tweak everything slightly to avoid that fate. So I carefully bent the support bracket slightly more level, allowing it to prop against the handlebar stem instead (so both the stem and the basket would turn together). To keep metal from bumping into metal, I added some padding to the support bracket: I cut a section of wine cork, slit down the middle lengthwise and carved out a ridge inside each half, deep enough that thw two halves fit together again. Then I wrapped the whole thing in some tape. Besides padding the metal, it also eliminates the rattling noise usually associated with baskets.

I rode the bike on errands this afternoon and the basket worked beautifully.

Wald baskets are made in the USA, by workers who are paid a living wage and benefits, and they last a good long time. They improve a bike's utility tenfold and I have never been sorry for adding a basket to my bike.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

coffeeneuring challenge 2015:10 -- arbor lodge coffee & cyclocross crusade finale

My last Coffeeneuring ride of the fall, a quick stop at Arbor Lodge, and then a five-mile ride down to Portland International Raceway for the final day of racing in the Cyclocross Crusade series.

I had a lovely time. When I ran out of coffee, friends offered to refill it for me at one of the dozens of pop-up tents lining the race course. They also plied me with energy bars, pizza and a Voodoo doughnut before it was all over. A great end to the 2015 fall coffeeneuring season.

Evidence photo: Arbor Lodge Coffee, corner of N. Rosa Parks and Interstate.

Below: a portable outdoor oven/grill. It came on the back of a cargo bike.  Sausages and onions being grilled on a shovel (yes, that's a can of PAM cooking spray on the tabletop; it worked like a charm on the shovel).

The chef, who tied his hair back with -- what else? -- a giant zip-tie.

(Below: for those who've only raced in USA Cycling-sanctioned events, this is called a dollar hand-up. They are totally legal here in OBRALand, where we run our own racing scene with USA Cycling's help and, frankly, have more fun racing than the rest of the country. I used to race 'cross. I still have the dollar bill I got as a hand-up in my very last race.
Total distance: around 12 miles.
Thanks for following along and happy riding!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

possibly the very last "tried & liked" list ever

The "Tried & Liked" list originated with the iBOB crowd -- that group of mostly-male, mostly older enthusiasts of All Things Bridgestone Bicycle -- a number of years back. iBOBs would share their lists of things they tried and liked or didn't like with each other.

I joined in the fun for several years.

This year, I realized that there wasn't a whole lot left for me to try and report back on, because this whole listmaking seemed to depand on buying new things every so often. And since leaving the bicycle industry three years ago, I'm just not buying as many new things as I used to.

So here is my list of everything bikey I tried this year. I suspect that it may be the last such list I post, since I am buying less and less; so enjoy.

1. Tried and didn't like:

-- approaching the Tilikum Crossing bridge from the west side of Portland during rush hour. Because, really, all the funky turns and crossings getting from Moody onto the bridge are a cluster. A well-marked cluster, but a cluster nonetheless. It's fine on a Sunday morning, I suppose; but I'll avoid it during rush hour.

-- The rising price of "decent" ran gear that is made in China. Come on, people; I've made my USA-made Burley rain jacket last for twenty years with careful upkeep, mending and occasional washings in Nikwax to re-proof the fabric. I look at Chinese-made raingear today that doesn't last more than three seasons and is as expensive now (taking inflation into account) as Burley was then.
Not worth it.

2. Tried and liked:

-- installing flat pedals on every bike I own. All three of my bicycles now have flat pedals. So far, I like the grippiness of the VP pedals I got from Rivendell; but the raised lump in the middle is a little uncomfortable on longer rides. For all-around comfort I like the Redline platform pedals I've installed on the other two bikes; but they are heavier by far than the VP's.

-- installing WALD 8095 upright "Touring" bars as an alternative to the North Road uprights. The B'stone has the Walds, the Riv has the North Roads. I like the difference between the two bars; but if I had to live with only one bike I'd be fine with the much more affordable Walds. If you want to get super-geeky about it and see photos, here's a discussion -- a discussion! -- about the various upright bars and their virtues.

-- Coffeeneuring. I took a break from participating in this event last year due to health issues that kept me off my bike more regularly during the fall and winter. This year, I felt better and resumed my coffeeneuring adventures. The point is to ride your bicycle, drink coffee, and enjoy yourself. That's a concept I can get behind. Although the "official" event is seven weeks long and ends this Sunday, I may continue the adventure through the winter by seeking out new places to enjoy coffee by bicycle.

-- Paring down my bicycle holdings and buying far less stuff. Because the fact is that I just don't need as much bicycle stuff as I used to, or as used to think I needed. I'm down to three bikes and a trailer and may well go down to two bikes and a trailer by spring. I once dreamed of bike-camping long distances but the reality is that this is less and less likely as I get older, so out go most of the panniers and stuff. The boxes of parts are slowly being sold off, bringing in much-needed cash and space; and I am enjoying living a bicycle life where I don't think about what I'll wear or who I might hope to impress. I just don't care anymore. I just want to ride my bicycle around town and enjoy my city, and I don't need a ton of accessories to do that other than a bicycle, lights, rain gear and a very good lock.

-- getting rid of the cyclometer. This one was hard. It took a couple of years to finally convince myself it was a good idea. I had kept track of my mileage for a decade before finally chucking the cyclometer this summer. It has made all the difference in how much more I enjoy riding, and reminded me that riding a bicycle is about riding a bicycle, not about consuming miles -- or things.

Happy riding!

Saturday, November 7, 2015

fixation: a short history of bicycle preferences

Home today, nursing the remants of a chest cold that will not die.

My thoughts turn to possibly the best bicycle I ever had, a 1980s Peugeot Orient Express.
The Orient Express was that oddball, a Peugeot bicycle designed in France and built in Japan.
It had standard (non-French threading throughout, a very decent selection of Suntour parts, and a fork crown that was so overbuilt it bordered on medieval. The thing weighed a ton and with its slung-back geometry was not a speedster by any means; but it just looked so cool that I dreamed of owning one. When a frameset came my way via Citybikes, I built it up into what became the perfect 26"-wheeled city bike.

I outfitted it with a rear rack, a Carradice bag and a front basket, fenders and lights, and a Brooks saddle. For the next five years or so, I rode it to death, riding it even more than the 700c-wheeled Rivendell LongLow I had at the time.

I had to sell the Peugeot, sadly, when I decided to rebuild it with an Xtracycle kit and discovered that an already-too-big frame was impossibly big when I added the kit on the back. I couldn't reach the ground while seated unless I lowered the saddle to an uncomfortably low riding position. And so, after agonizing over my options, I stripped the frameset and sold it back to the shop, and chose a smaller mountain frame for my Xtracycle project.

I've kicked myself ever since.

Subsequent bikes and over a decade later, I've built up these bikes, and discovered that they are all basically in the image of that Peugeot city bike:

1. Rivendell All-Rounder, ca. 1999: This bike came to me after I'd sold the Peugeot frameset, and then built and test-rode a prototype Kogswell Pourteur. I first rode this bike with drops, but eventually, I sold the blue Rivendell (which, though made "custom" for me in the 1990's, had never fit me quite right) and refashioned the All-Rounder as an upright city bike. This remains the go-to bike today.

2. A few years ago, The Kansas Bike came to me. An old Diamondback mountain bike from the first generation of the department store downfall for the brand, probably around ten years old. The fork was flat-out hideous, clunky and fat and ugly; and there wasn't much to recommend the rest of the bike, either. But it was free, abandoned at the synagogue where I used to work. My boss couldn't locate the owner, most likely one of the homeless guys who camped out behind the temple regularly, and asked me to make the bike go away. I took it home, straightened the bent derailleur hanger (something my boss hadn't noticed, and likely the reason the bike was abandoned), and found it was perfectly rideable.

When it became clear that my summer teaching residency in Kansas was to become an annual thing, I swapped in some street tires, better handlebars and friction shifters, and shipped the bike east. It now lives in the senior rabbi's house, ready for me to ride whenever I visit. I left an old Carradice "Overland" Pannier with it, stuffed with a spare helmet, mini-pump, some tools and an old Burley rain jacket. At some point on a future visit, I will need to overhaul the bottom bracket, but there's no big rush. Maybe next June when I return for my teaching residency, I'll take a couple bottom bracket tools with me and just get it done on one of my days off or something...
Even though the bike is basically a POS, I've grown rather fond of it and its backstory.

3. My most recent city bike buildup is this 1989 Bridgestone MB-4, which I got in trade a few years back for a Thomson seatpost that never made it onto a bicycle. (The seatpost had been a gift from a dealer rep when I was still racing, so I didn't pay for that, either; making the bicycle basically free.)
I retro-fitted with with modern racing bits, and raced it for most of a season before deciding it was time to hang up the lycra for good. (I enjoyed racing, but my gut did not.)
It sat for over a year while I focused on other projects, Then, last year, when I decided to overhaul the Rivendell, I re-built the B'stone as a replacement city bike.  By now, you'll note that a strong pattern has emerged...
I no longer own or ride bikes with anything other than 26" (ERD 559) wheels. This does two things for me: first, it simplifies -- and reduces -- the number of spare wheels, tires and tubes I need to keep on hand; and secondly, it reduces the need -- or, frankly, the desire -- for more than two or three bikes in my stable.

This pattern has even made itself apparent elsewhere, a common thread running through my life.
I made this quilt (all by hand) in 2000, and used pieces of old curtains, shirts, and other things.
 (Close-up, at left: Note the crank arms. They're from an old Campy cap I wore during my brief stint as a bike messenger in the 80s.)

And the handlebars? Look closely.
Upright, with a nice tall stem -- not unlike the stem used on the Peugeot and the Bridgestone (that's the same stem, by the way, used on both builds).

I do have one bike left with drop bars, but as times goes by I have to admit that it is less and less satisfying to ride. In the end, I may strip it down and sell off the parts I don't need, and transfer the nicer bits to existing bikes. There is something about braking from the hoods that, even with shorter-reach levers, is no longer so comfortable for my hands. So I am riding upright bikes basically all the time anymore, and enjoying it.

What patterns have emerged in your bicycle preferences over the years? It's good to check in now and then, I think, and see what's no longer needed.

Food for thought.
Happy riding!

(Left: Slug Velo Fall Colors Ride, October 2003, on the Peugeot. Twelve years later I still have that green Carradice bag, those wool tights and the cotton sweater-vest.)

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

coffeeneuring challenge 2015:9 -- AJ Java, NE Portland

I came home from Kansas, caught Sweetie's cold, and spent several days hacking up unspeakable things. Feeling better today, but still coughing, I decided to tempt fate with a short, sunny "bonus" ride. Strangely, my cough faded a bit as I rode along.

On the other side of Peninsula Park, at the southwest corner of NE Albina and Rosa parks, sits AJ Java, a place I've gone coffeeneuring before; but now they roast their own coffee in-house and I wanted to see if it was any different. The outside looked tired, frayed around the edges; the painted signs up top had faded almost to nothing, and the only identifying logos were painted on the glass doors and window.

(At left: Where the action happens.)

But is the coffee any better now?
It tasted fresh, hot and pretty darned good, though nothing special. I paired it with a slice of day-old chocolate bread (which was actually quite tasty!) and called it Good.

 (At left: the kids' corner at AJ Cafe)

After I left AJ, my cough was still bothering me a little, so I limited my ride to loops around back alleyways and cross-streets, taking a crisp scenic route back to my house.

I sort of wish I could record the feeling of riding on a day like this, with cool air and the colors of a late autumn afternoon; but some things are better left unrecorded.

(Above: Peninsula Park)
I finally ended up back home after a short, lovely ride of just under than five miles, which was all my lungs could handle.
I have one more coffeeneuring ride planned before the deadline, and I'm hoping some Portland-area friends will join me for it. Stay tuned.

Monday, November 2, 2015

cycling for change

The Community Cycling Center, a non-profit bike shop where I worked as a mechanic and lead instructor, has just released a beautiful new video about their programs.

Check it out here.

Nice to see that this non-profit has blossomed in such a great way, serving underserved populations in Portland and giving them tools to organize in their communities for positive growth and change.

Friday, October 30, 2015

coffeeneuring challenge 2015:8 -- Koken Market

I needed a bicycle ride to help me handle a depressive phase today, so I forced myself into clothes and outside this afternoon for a little ride around the neighborhood. With two weeks left to Coffeenuer, I decided to add to my slate of rides by stopping for coffee or whatever else I could find at my local mom-and-pop store, Koken Market (southeast corner of NE Dekum and MLK, Portland).


The store has gone through several incarnations in the last decade; this latest is an example of knowing one's market. The shelves are lined with fifty varieties of mostly cheap wine and the coolers are all filled with cheap beer (except for the one of the far right which has pop and juice).

Seeing that the coffee choice was pretty dim -- non-functional, in fact, as the machine was not even hooked up ("we're going to sell it," the nice lady told me, "because everyone wants beer." Right. Got it) -- I opted for a bottle of Jarrito's (Mexican pop) and a bag of chips to eat at the park. Not coffee, not hot; I know, maybe not a qualifier, but this ride was about riding for its own sake and I'm not concerned if it's on the edge. Plus, riding over to the park and seeing how last night's windstorm blew most of the petals off the roses, settling on a bench and enjoying my snack was enough. Fall has come to the rose garden, and to Portland. That means the multicolor of summer is going away, the deciduous trees are losing their red-gold leaves, and the only color left through the winter will be evergreen.

I took a loop around the back of the park, rode over to Safeway and picked up a few things before Shabbat.

Then I rose slowly home, glad to have gotten outside if only for an hour or so. The big rain is scheduled to come tonight and all day tomorrow, so I'm glad I rode when I did. Total around six miles.
Time to settle in for a quiet Shabbat at home with my sweetie and the World Series.  Happy Friday, Shabbat Shalom, and of course happy riding!
(and #letsgomets)
Autumn sky, NE Dean

(Below: the last leaves from my favorite trees on Dean, fallen)

Thursday, October 22, 2015

coffeeneuring challenge 2015:7 -- parisi cafe, leawood, kansas

I know, I did it on a day when I also I worked. But I only worked a little bit. And I wanted to get in a coffeeneuring ride while I was traveling on tour, so here it is. Count it or not. I certainly do.

The synagogue where I sometimes visit in my work is in Overland Park, Kansas, a suburb of Kansas City. I have a very nice arrangement with the senior rabbi here; since I visit periodically, he has allowed me to store a bicycle here so I have something to ride when I come to town. I built up the bike a couple years ago, a refurbished bike that had been abandoned at the synagogue in Portland where I used to work, and shipped out to Kansas last year. It's nothing fancy, just a cheap mountain bike that I "citified" slight with upright bars, friction shifters, fenders and a rack. And a cool Carradice pannier I scored cheap. When I come and teach here during their summer program, I also have the use of a trailer to haul my guitar and music back and forth. The trailer is now on semi-permanent loan since the family's youngest child has outgrown it. When I'm not using it, it lives in a back room at the synagogue. (How cool is that??)

So today, when my meetings were done and I had time before meeting a friend, I took a couple hours and rode from the synagogue over to Park Place, which is technically in the neighboring community of Leawood. Leawood is what happens when you take perfectly good farmland and turn it into a suburb. A suburb with building codes (all the big box stores are tan. Really), gated communities and pop-up islands of urban cool. It's a strange thing to one who is unaccustomed to this kind of development, but apparently it's not uncommon in cities without a UGB (Urban Growth Boundary).

So I rode up the gloriously wide sidewalk (no bike lanes along my route) and went in search of coffee that did not suck.

I found it at Parisi Cafe in Park Place.

 The coffee was hot, fresh and amazingly delicious, so good I probably didn't need to add cream and sugar but since I like my coffee "regular" I went ahead and got it that way. Strong without tasting burnt, A nice rich aftertaste, and best of all it went very well with dessert.
Plus, they gave me a break for bringing my own cup, which helped take a little sting out of the sales tax. (In Oregon we have none. We probably should, but don't get me started.)

Oh my goodness, dessert. A Chocolate cake that was so thick and rich without being overly sweet.
Fantastic mouth feel. So dense I had to eat it very slowly, but so yummy I wanted to eat it all and did so without a shred of guilt.
If you find yourself in Leawood, and you need good coffee, go here.

I returned to work for a meeting that wound up not happening, then rode home to my homestay.

Total distance covered today was probably close to five miles, with the coffee being a good two miles from home. It's probably the only bike ride I'll get in while traveling, since thunderstorms are due in the morning and my friends here don't like it when I ride in their rain. Their rain often comes with lightning.

So "officially" I've got my seven rides in, but will likely just keep adding more until the deadline, just for fun. And coffee.
Happy riding.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

coffeeneuring challenge 2015:6 -- Disaster Relief Trials, Portland

I volunteered this morning at the Disaster Relief Trials, a simulation event/contest that demonstrates how cargo bicycles can become a lifeline for a community in the first days after a natural disaster.

It was an opportunity to enjoy an early-morning ride along N. Willamette Blvd, view some pretty awesome cargo bicycles in action, and sip some coffee I'd brewed up fresh just before leaving the house.
I've included a video and a couple of evidence photos here. The rest can be seen at my Flickr page.

Total distance: Around 9 miles RT.
Photos: Registration and coffee go together.

In addition to signing in riders, I also did some dog-sitting with the delightful Memphis.

Video: LeMans-style start for Family and E-Assist categories.