Saturday, April 28, 2012

Ready or not? Here we go

"eh... tomorrow want to ride? " 

Tomorrow we ride for Paul Lim. Now 128km can be a piece of cake for some but to most of us weekend cycling warriors and LCSG-ers it is abit on the long side. No matter and I know we will be able to make it.  Double water bottle filled, Tires check, patch kit, levers, handpump, inner tubes, power gel, snacks... all checked. Zip tie the awesome Paul ride design on my bike.  Lube it all up and did a test ride to check all is in working condition.  Ready.... set....
yes, I cheated.. I took out my Plechser stand to reduce weight.. 

Mounted a foam board to read the directions... so I don't bring team 4 to holland
Spare tube, potato chip,  power gel, candy, rain coat 
Toolkit and levers checked
Swapped to my trusty Lezne pump.. not as sexy as the carbon one but this pumps faster, better.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Making it even better for cycling at PCN

I found this awesome design company called Cyclehoop in the UK who designs and fabricates innovative cycling infrastructure.  While it is in the UK, I find that certain concepts can be leveraged over to Singapore.  Here are 2 products which I think could improve the overall Singapore PCN cycling experience.

Vending machine that sells bicycle, bicycle repair related stuff alongside canned drinks and snacks. 
Road pillar that serves as a air pump

And if there are bridges and u need to carry ur bikes to reach the other PCN connection... you can roll the bike up the bridge. The bridge has been built already, no problem. This ramp can be retrofitted which means existing infrastructure can be adapted to make it more bike friendly. I know the Braddell road/Bishan PCN and St Andrew/Moonstone bridge would be much more used if this was implemented.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Bike dock by Brompton

Taken from Brompton uk website

Now this is real smart move by Brompton to encourage more folks to takeup cycling. This also puts Brompton in a very favorable light as a commuting equipement. Also really respect the company for pushing folding bike culture into another level.
Read more about the brompton bike dock here  I wonder if our LTA /SMRT (who is the agency is in charge) or bicycle companies would consider doing this for Singapore context?

Monday, April 23, 2012

Lovecyclingsg in the good old days

Michael Wong shared a very heartwarming photo of him and his friends in the good old day. In his actual words..
 "Thought I show you guys this photo. This was our LoveCycling Kakis in the good old days. Location, Tenah Merah. Yours truly is behind the guitarist, left. On my right is Bollywood Ivy's brother Mohan. We "pontang" school to do this ride. Our rides usually start from St Andrew's School, popular destinations, Punggol, Pasir Ris and Changi. What a great difference from today's LoveCycling SG but the joy is same.....

 Photo credit Michael Wong

This just rocks, don't you think?  

29th April 2012 Ride for Paul 128km

The man who can smoke em all.. Paul Lim  artwork by Joeel
This Sunday, 29th April we will ride in Paul Lim's memory. Last year same date, Paul and his friends were supposed to ride to Sendil, Malaysia. While the group was travelling on a van towards Changi Village. The van was rear ended by a drunk driver at ECP expressway. The force was so great that it flipped the van and in the process, Paul was thrown out of the vehicle.  More of the fateful event here
90 folks will do this ride and special mention are the 9 Carryme riders led by Ro herself. This would be an event that Paul would approve of.  Let's do a good, safe ride and have fun. Chiong ah! 
*Pls note the route is the same as the 128km night ride. GPS map here , Thanks Encik George.
Meet point will be at Bigsplash, near the roller blading area, closer to the PCN. 0715 meet, 0730 first group move out.  Come on by and support the riders!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Learnings from

Read this writing today while browsing thru the internet. He had brought up a very good point - EGO.  It is about an accident which all cyclists will face sometime in while they ride. I love his writing style which is personal and not just concentrating on the technical aspect of the matter.
When you have been cycling long enough, u would think that your skills become so good and fast that you are "unbeatable". In singapore context - it is called "yaya papaya".. thats when accidents happen.  Good read and reflect on our behaviours on the road. Ride safe and have fun cycling!

Excerpts of the article.. " After a month or two of two-wheeled rage, I had an epiphany. I was afraid. Everywhere I went I anticipated being crushed and killed, and rather than weeping and cowering, I was going on the offensive. If I wasn’t overtly courting conflict, I was having protracted arguments, in my head, with errant motorists. I was, I think, trying to make sense of a new landscape, one in which I could be doing everything correctly, and still be killed. This was no way to go about riding a bicycle. I ride a bike, because I like it, not to drive myself into irrational rages. I had to change, not only my attitude, but also the way I ride. I had to be more forgiving, more patient. This took time......"

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Grandpa bring me to school on a bicycle

The walk to the office from JTC hill carpark takes about 5-8min and is usually quite mundane. But sometimes, there are wonderful moments. Like this. It made me smile. Grandpa was having a little chat with his precious, oblivious to all the hustle and bustle. Cycling leisurely to the childcare... sure beats walking:)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

What to bring with you when u ride

Youtube is a treasure trove of good information. Here's one that shares what to bring on a ride. If you don't have this items, perhaps it is time to invest in them.

Inspiring Trishaw cyclists from China in Singapore

Wow! I saw this late yesterday night and impressed with the couple efforts. Living their dreams to visit the world. No money to fly.. well, build a trishaw and ride all the way. And they did, all the way from China!  See the article on the news.

We quickly shared this on our facebook and it became buzzing. Derrick and Nick was so curious that they got out of their bed at 1130pm and went to check them out. This is their rig(thanks to Nick and Derrick recce) They and  trishaw are now parked at Hong Lim park and they will be out sightseeing. By this friday, the couple will be headed back to Thailand and to India! This is not an everyday event and if u want to be inspired by the human spirit . Go down quick to show your support!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

LCSG Bikeskill course 2012

LCSG Bikeskill course 2012, a set on Flickr.
The much awaited Bike handling for LCSG folks finally started at *Scape on 15th April 2012. All made possible with the help by Kenneth of Singapore bike school and Simon of Lifecycle who sponsored the venue.
Conducted very professionally, Kenneth and his team taught very useful skills like riding on narrow plank, balancing and handling the bike on uneven ground. Even more interesting was the  balancing and trying to ride at the slowest pace possible. It looks simple but was actually very challenging.
All the drills were done in a very fun and interactive way. I see many folks looking very stressed and wondered if they can make it. After the session, I must say their bike handling indeed improved alot! Guess tomorrow there will be some sore muscles but is all worth it. Here are the full set of photos of this very memorable event!

If you or your cycling group like to do the course, pls kindly contact Kenneth who would be glad to help you out.

Bike Handling lessons as taught by Singapore Bike School
1) Set up the obstacle course and allow riders to try out the course. - 20min
2) Cycle thru the cones, concentrate not to deviate pass the cones. Objective - improve tracking and eye/hand coordination. Your bike will track where your eyes look
3) Plank course - balancing and tracking.
4) Salom- Learning to use body weight to make the turns.
5) Riding one hand- Better control of the bike. Improved cyclists confidence. Cycle around the perimeter and switch hands when the whistle blows
6) Learning to brake quickly when at a quick stop
7) Start off the bicycle and stand up - Improve bike handling and confidence
8) Slow riding and balancing- Whole team start from end of the park and ride as slowly as possible to the other end.

Friday, April 13, 2012

What is powder coating? watch this

A lady talking about her bike - Pinkie. Rather than junking it out the old, she recollects the good times and how well the bike fits her. So she decided to spiff up the old frame and this is her journey thru the power coating shop and learning more about power coating. I wonder if there is a similar shop in Singapore that does that?

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Masura san of level bicycle

The man at work
Address of Masura san bike studio
Look for no.4 .. that's where he is located
Cultural icons of Japan...
Mr Matsura handbuilds his bicycle, one at a time. In this mood of mass production and generic products, he is like the last of the mohicans. I had the privilege to visit him 1 year ago which left a very deep impression on me. This is how to get to his studio if u happen to be in Tokyo. He is even featured in Tokyo living cultural icons.. together with lacquer ware and metal foundry masters.

Pedestrian ghost concept for slowing down cars

This is in Ukraine and for the record I am not in anyway advocating we do this in Singapore less we get arrested. But I am touched by their actions which is very creative and though provoking. Speeding kills and even more damage can be cause if you are on a heavier vehicle say a car or bus. Recently we have seen repeated cases of buses knocking down people on the traffic lights. This is a worrying trend.. ..more so from a cyclist perspective. I am already lighted like a xmas tree + flag and still I feel insecure on the Singapore road and keep my ears,eyes ready for any danger and clowns.
How do we get our cars, buses to be just that little bit lighter on the pedal? ... the throttle pedal. For a start, maybe we can do as similar one on accident prone areas light the end of changi coastal road as a reminder to cars to slow down. Watch the video and tell me what you think 

Monday, April 9, 2012

Bicycle lift for hills

What an excellent idea for hilly areas. I understand that this is the first bicycle lift in the world and it is done at Norway! Imagine how this can help make it more relaxing for normal folks to enjoy a bicycle ride.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Bike fitting video

If u have a video camera and trainer, might be a good thing to learn on ur riding posture.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Inspiring stuff from old uncles... .

This inspires me!

Safety flag inspired by Starwars from Taiwan

The power of social media..... Joeel shared this on our facebook and I think this is a very cool safety feature for group rides. I know it looks dorky but it really help increase our odds on the roads and make the rider be noticed on by truckers and heavy vehicles.  This is made by Shiner- fiber of Taiwan and you can see how it works below video.

As lovecyclingsg group gets bigger, the rides are attracting more riders and safety becomes even more of a concern. I think this LED Flag pole will help. What do you think? How can we make cycling in Singapore even safer for all?

Ride safe, use a flag - by Darren Siow

PUTTING A FLAG ON MY BIKE - Written by Darren Siow
After some outings with Tai Woon and the LCSG team, I thought it was fun to have a flag on my bike. Initially, I wanted one just for fun. Later on, I felt it was a good safety measure. It’s strange that I would consider putting a flag on my bike because for many years I rode road bikes and there was no way in hell one of those flappy things were going on my bike. Maybe it’s age, or maybe it’s knowing that bad things do happen to cyclists on the road, so I decided that I wanted aflag. Come to think of it, I have a flag on my Brompton but I never put one on my road bike. I don’t know why I have double standards. 
The Rod
Anyway, I thought for a long time about how to make a flag that would fit my Brompton. On one of my rides to Changi Village, I decided to pop into the shop that sells fishing equipment. My hope was that I would be able to buy a cheap fishing rod to use as the flagpole. I knew there were telescopic fishing rods but they usually also come with the loops for the line. I told the shop owner that I wanted a telescopic rod without the loops and to my surprise, he said he had exactly what I needed. And he was right! From under the counter, he brought out a few carbon fiber prawning rods! It wasn’t cheap but it suited my needs to a T. The fully collapsed length is about 30cm; the extended length is 7 feet! The nice thing about the prawning rod is that you can customize the length you need. Since the sections of the rod collapse into each other, you can simply remove the smallest few or the largest few sections to get the length you need.
The Flag
My initial attempt to get a flag was to go online and buy one. However, they aren’t cheap. So as a keen DIY-er, I decided to make one myself. Digging into my wardrobe, I found the perfect t-shirt to be used. It was an old Nautica tee which I never wore anymore because it was too rough. The color was perfect!
I had 2 concepts to fit the flag onto the rod: glue it down or slide it in. I’ve done both and there are pros and cons for both concepts. The glued down flag is very secure, and you won’t have to worry about the flag flying off the rod. The downside is that it takes up a fixed length of the rod, so you can’t collapse the rod fully.  Obviously, for the slide in concept, the pros and cons are opposite. For my current flag, I’ve taken a lazy man’s approach to solve the flying off issue: zip tie! It’s proving to be very effective; I’ve ridden over a hundred klicks and it’s staying on the rod just fine.
My first proto flag had a standard pennant style, whereby the side that is fixed to the rod is shorter than the other 2 sides. However, due to the softness of the material, I realized that I had to ride really fast before the flag was fully extended. That called for Plan B. In the next prototype, I followed a design from Purple Sky Flags ( because I like how their flags look. The current flag orientation is oblique to the first prototype. This meant that the longest side of the flag was fixed to the rod and the shortest side was the lowest edge (nearest to the ground). In this design, the weight or softness of the material is negligible because the distance to fully extend the flag is very short.
In the next few pictures, you will see the items that I’ve used as well as the current flag that I’ve placed on my Brompton.
The Sacrificial T-shirt
The First Flag Proto and The Telescopic Prawning Rod
Mark 2.. with blinking lights
Stitching to hold the snaky blinking lights 

Taiwoon recycled kite pole

TW flag on his Moulton