Bike Uncategorized

Missed a birthday… 3250miles / 12mths.

It was two years ago, May 2011, that I purchased my Specialized Crosstrail Sport Disc 2011.


Here’s an update on the bike’s needs so far…

  • If you are commuting you really need to carry ‘stuff’, hence a multi-purpose the rack on the back for my two panniers.
  • You also need decent mudguards if you want to stay relatively dry and clean. Not an easy fit on this bike but my workaround has worked well to-date.
  • Even in the day, I use a Serfas ‘True 250′ USB front light. A nights charge last me a week. I consider it invaluable. Both to be seen coming in the daylight and to light your way in the dark.
  • And my rear light is a strong CatEye TL-LD1100. Rechargeable batteries last a good while.
  • Another essential, and I can’t recommend it enough, is a decent bell. I now have a Widek Chrome Ding dong Bell 80mm and In my opinion anyone cycling among pedestrians or city streets should have one fitted as standard.
  • Another good idea are reflective spoke thingies, they stand out when any light shines on them.
  • For a birthday, I was gifted a Brooks Flyer Special. A little extravagant but nice!
  • Of course there’s the daily banana for fuel!

Over these 2 years, the bike’s needed various replacement parts;

  • After 7 months it needed a new chain and cassette.
  • After 14 months I replaced Specialized Borough Xc Sport Tyre 700×45 with 700x32mm Schwalbe Durano Plus. These tyres have been fantastic over the last 10mths.
  • After 15 months the considerably worn SunTour/SRAM chain set (ring, chain and cassette) was replaced with a Shimano megarange CS HG41.
  • After 1 year 7 mths the stock back wheel rim cracked and freewheel was worn. The replacement tough new Mavic rim has been good to date.
  • After 1 year 11mths, the bike had a April 2013 full spring chemical clean, and full service.

It get’s quite a pelting from 15 miles around daily commute through all weathers, and very poor road surface. It picks up a lot of crud off the road, especially in winter. Despite this, last August’s chainset etc is still up for another 6 months+ hopefully.

Since the service, the bike is riding really well…

Here’s the stats

I started recording my rides on my old bike back in Feb. 2011.

  • I totalled 3051 miles recorded over first 12 months riding. (Feb ’11 – Feb ’12)
  • Over the last year, June ’12 through May ’13, I have ridden about 3250 miles.



Look local first!

After unsuccessfully visiting two larger city cycle shops this morning, I popped into the ‘small on the outside, big on the inside’ local town shop. I was after a quality chargeable front light for my bike – for commuting daily using unlit country lanes.
It’s fine immersing yourself in the supposedly ‘this is what you need, ‘cos this is want everyone else has’ on the interweb, but perhaps ‘real’ life is more… real, amenable, alive…?

  • The first large Half-auto store I passed; which adversities “For everything to do with bikes…”; didn’t have ANY rechargeable lights and what it had was relatively basic and arguably not suitable.
  • The second shop (an old standard of Nottingham origins) was helpful and informative and although they could order some (can’t we call) didn’t stock ANY rechargeable lights, and again what it had was relatively basic and arguably not suitable.
  • Embarrassingly, my last choice, because I was passing on the way home, (and to be honest I thought it was a big ask for a small shop to stock a large range of accessories) to my surprise had just the thing!

They were welcoming, knowledgable and helpful.
The Serfas ‘True 250’ is just what I was looking for. 

The spec and the price was just right – and having compared it’s credentials further I’m very pleased with it. It was a great to be able to see and try a range of options before I bought.

Thanks Cyclops, I had little faith but next time ‘Cyclops Cycles’ in Syston will be my first choice.