Sunday, April 29, 2012

Aero Teardrop Trailer debut

Yesterday we rolled the ATT MK I out of the garage for the first time. Humm, maybe I should call it ATdT instead to keep Ma Bell from coming after me. After all someone might mistake it for a phone booth:) 
After a 14 mile test drive and we’re pleased. It tracked great in gusty winds. It towed pretty lightly, the Matrix spent time in 5th, and the big hill near home needed a shift to 3rd instead of the usual 4th. What type MPG we get will be the next really interesting data point. After the drive we were inspired to add a little more art work. Hawk eyes to the front and Wharram owl eyes to the side. 

As to the the ride itself, the plan is to drive w/ATdT to the Durham area to camp on Monday to re-start my ride Tuesday May 1st. The ATdT is going to make 90+ days camping on the road so much more “civilized” .

Note: This trailer is also what I'm calling the "MK I" (pronounced Mark One) version in honor of the Brits, you see I built it without plans. I did an initial sketch to get the profile shape then just started building and tackled build issues as they came up. Having owned and loved old British cars and boats I've always thought this was how they designed and built:) 

MK II or maybe MK III will include an aerodynamically shaped forward storage area, fender fairings, overhead hatch fairing, and vortex generator fins aft(looking suspiciously like a 1950' Chevy fins), and belly pans. 

“Struggle gives meaning and richness to life” 
                 Sir Roger Bannister(1929- ),  First man to run a  sub-four minute mile on May 6th, 1954.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Salsa 24T, better to climb those hills!! And some other stuff.

I bought a Salsa 24T Granny Chainring and a set of Schwalbe Marathon Racer tires from Utah Trikes. I'm waiting a bit to put the tires on but I want the new granny gear in now to make sure everything works correctly. Installing the 24T was a breeze. I was a little concerned since I haven't had the bottom bracket on a bike opened up in 30 years. I remember loose ball bearings, shims and just a mess in general. Well times have changed for the better. Sealed bearings first off, then just the removal of a couple allen bolts and the crank was off. Then 5 more allen bolts and the old chainring was off. It actually took less time to install than a new Cateye Strada Cadence bike computer.

Old chainring ready to be removed.

New 24T compared to the stock 30T. 

52T/24T is pretty near the limit of the front derailer on this trike. I had asked Tom at Trident Trikes about putting a 24T low and something higher like a 56T. He said "one or the other, not both" and I see why. Utah Trike has a really cool 2 speed SRAM DualDrive rear hub  that would give me both a higher high and lower low. But at a cool $400, the $17 Salsa 24T won my hard earned cash:)
I ran the trike on my Sportcrafters trainer  for an hour and everything seems OK. Now if the snow would leave and that 80degF weather would return, I'm ready!

Other Stuff

I've moved the Cateye heart rate monitor to the fairing next to the GPS. This was to make room for the Cateye Strada Cadence and headlight. The fairing frame is also hosting a new mirror. The mirror just replaces the one that died near Brunswick ME.
New cockpit configuration. 
The Cateye Strada worked out great. I was able to pull apart the sensor wires for the cadence and speed. The cadence is in front naturally and it can be seen in the picture to the left of the faring bracket mount base. And the speed sensor is at the rear wheel. I wanted this so the speed would work while using the SportsCrafter trainer.

And finally a bell!

I was looking for a Hello Kitty bell, but couldn't find a nice one. So I found this cool reto red bell. I decided to install a bell after much riding on MUP (Multiple Use Paths). I discovered that calling out to walkers various forms of "ON YOUR LEFT", "TWO BIKES PASSING ON YOUR LEFT", "PLEASE GIVE ROOM TO PASS",etc is pretty useless. Heck a lot of bicyclists don't get it. So I'm trying a bell.

"Adventure is worthwhile in itself" Amelia Earhart 1897-1939(probable) Pioneering female aviator.