Today’s ride, the Black Pie, bike police and the joys of bike riding later in life.

Joe EE

Active Member
#1
Today was a great day to be bike riding. I have rejiggered my saddlebags. The hard bags that I was using were pretty but not very functional. Very delicate and my batteries barely fit inside even after I worked very hard at that. They were noisy on the trail and I was always nervous they were going to break off. At the end of my last ride one of my bolts did and it was necessary to replace them. The new bags are synthetic leather and I plan to replace them as well. I just needed a quick fix as soon as possible because the riding season is very brief here in New York. If anyone has any suggestions about canvas or burlap saddlebags I would appreciate hearing them.

Anyhow I set off this morning with 20 amp hours worth of Lipo4 batteries in tow ready to ride my favorite trail. Hot, sticky and humid out there just like I like it. I love riding this chopper bike, the Black Pie that I installed on the front hub does a beautiful job of propulsion. Quiet steady and powerful. I rode for 30 miles today and used up just one battery. Along the way at one point I needed to get off and walk a bit. An 80 something fellow that I chatted with last year slowed down and asked me if I needed help with anything mechanical. Only on the bike trail! At one other point I passed a young family, mother and father and a four-year-old girl or so. She was learning to ride with her training wheels and her little pink handlebar streamers. As I went by she cried “look mommy he has ribbons on his bike too!”. I nearly wet myself I laughed so hard.

Further south I had pulled over to give my rearview mirror a wipe. I hadn’t seen anyone coming but was suddenly aware of someone right near me. I turned around surprised and realized that I was facing a bicycle policeman. In full uniform. Patrolling the trail. The trail has frequent signs that say no motorized vehicles.

He looked at my bike, he looked at me, but he did not have any kind of accusatory look about him. I looked him in the eye and I said “Good morning!” (Which I pretty much say to everyone I pass) He answered "good morning"! And was off on his way without so much as a word about my bike or motors or anything other than good morning. I was very pleased with that interaction. I generally ride outbound at about 10 to 11 mph,
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nb5.jpg on the ride back I generally ride between 14 and 18 mph. I don’t consider myself a threat to anyone and I’m glad he felt the same way.

I have to say I am very pleased that I have found bicycle riding again. I spend six days a week, day and evening riding an MRI scanner which I do enjoy a great deal. But when I get the opportunity to hop on my ride and just roll down the road without a care in the world it’s magic. The sights and the smells and the generally happy mood of just about everyone else that I pass. All of us...at play. Building this bike this season has been just a wonderful experience.
 

Trail Cruiser

Well-Known Member
#2
That's the same trail that I used to ride last year. Since I have limited riding time this year (work changes and family demands), I now ride at the Southern link of the trailway. But I still manage to accumulate 100 miles a week.
 
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indianajo

Active Member
#3
Glad you're enjoying your off time.
The polyester bags that yubabikes.com is selling are quite durable and taller than what you have got. I've had up to 30 lb in each. I like the velcro closure as I'm into one every stop to access the security cable and helmet bag. Closing the bag every time keeps bird mess and rain out.
The mount is a bit curiouns, a single strap at top back that doesn't unbuckle or unsnap. I tie mine to the bookrack with twine. With slip knots this allows quick removal for changing the tube or adjusting the derailleur. I used tie wraps at first but they would pull out with that weight. I do have to support the bottom of the right one with a metal bar I made to keep it from pushing on the derailleur, which kept me out of 7th & 8th sprocket.
xtracycle.com also has a fabric pannier bag.
 
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