Friday, August 24, 2012

New Bike and First Ride to Work on the Space Horse!

The All-City Space Horse is mine! My first new bike ever. Lynn took this picture right outside of the Hub, on Cedar Ave. I like this shot because this was my neighborhood during my first year in the US, living in the highrise peeking out from behind the larger building left of center in the background.
And what a beautiful ride it was!

Got my new bike last weekend, an All-City Space Horse! I had been ogling it since my friend David had suggested it to me as an ideal mix of road and touring bike. I had tried it out a couple times at the Hub Bike Co-op on the West Bank in Minneapolis and ended up having them put a 58 cm size on lay-away. Lynn and I had attended a going away party of one of her staff at SHADAC and she gave me a ride to the Hub on this fateful Saturday afternoon. While they prepped the bike, we browsed Midwest Mountaineering's wares. I was hoping to make the ride home the maiden voyage but was almost thwarted when they removed the cheapo try-out pedals, which of course is standard practice. I must have looked like a little boy cheated out of a Christmas present because the chief mechanic on site relented and re-installed them. And I was off! Great feel compared to my old, creaky, rusty but still trusty Schwinn Super Le Tour.

I quickly decided to ride it to my new job in Eagan as soon as possible. In preparation for the new bike I had already ordered a few components at Amazon and they arrived on Monday. So I quickly installed a pair of Shimano PD-A530 pedals, they turned out to be easy to clip on, without any adjustments. I also put on a sturdy Topeak Explorer bike rack that same evening to clip on my Vaude Newport (size L) messenger bag with pannier attachment. It's a tight fit but I was able to squeeze a change of clothes and my lunch in and Vaude's patent hook clips work great. Just not sure how long they will last.
Going down Montreal Ave, towards W 7th Street.
The morning was gorgeous, cool and cloudless. I needed to ride conservatively in order not to work up too much of a sweat since my new place of employment does not sport a shower. On the first stretch I was able to stop  next to my neighbor Tim at University Ave intersection to say 'hi.' It was a smooth ride from S of Hamline-Ayd Mill intersection to Lilydale but there was 300 m of gravel from the Valley Park trailhead to the big downhill. I guess the gas company is working on its pipeline and must be improving that section of trail for service vehicles or maybe something was buried under that stretch. But I was able to test gravel riding capability of the Space Horse. Not bad, likely partly due to the size 37 tires.
On bike trail atop I-35 E bridge across the Mississippi.
On my second ride which I took the morning after a storm
I encountered a couple of surprises in Valley Park: first a
deer crossed my path, then the path was blocked by this
fallen tree.
I missed light at Dodd and Hwy 110 by a few seconds, oh well a 3 minute breather. Smooth sailing for the remainder of the way, all along Dodd Rd. to work. I made it in 41 minutes under observance of ALL traffic rules.
Locked the Horse to the reeling at our loading ramp and had a quick splashdown in bathroom.

Since then, I had two more rides and also installed the Garmin GSC 10 Cadence sensor and my tush is now resting on the ol' Brooks B-17 saddle which I switched out from the Schwinn. One Item I am still missing is a mirror, currently waiting for the Mirrycle bar-end mirror which I really liked on my old bike.  

No comments: