A pack of Grommits in Bristol

29 June

On our first afternoon in Bristol we took a walk and came across a train load of Gromits being installed as part of a fund raiser for the local hospitals.



Starting in Bristol – going clockwise

Jane and I landed at London Heathrow very early on Friday 28 June. We unpacked as and assembled or bikes and caught the Heathrow Connect to Paddington. Then an inter-city train to Bristol. You can track our travels on courtesy of our Spot tracker page  (https://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php?id=5a15508da7cad291a&showInfo=yes).  Photos soon, Peter.

PS  Spot was a bit jet-lagged and didn’t kick into action until day 2.  Oops!


Protocol! Eh, we’re on holidays.

Jane has been diligently writing her diary each day.  We are sharing that text in this blog.  We will also add photos we’ve each taken along the way.  The text for each part will be attributed to me or Jane.  Peter


Big bag for the new seat

Riding the new seat on the FF to work necessitates the ability to carry a decent sized bag. For some years a beloved Timbuktu courier bag (70 bagel size?) has carted all manner of gear on all manner of riders really well. That bag doesn’t easily adapt yo the narrow profile of the new seat.

A large giveaway laptop backpack one of my daughters bought home from a placement looked about the right size, shape and volume. With the addition of a seat pocket at the top and a bit of webbing for additional security it looks like it will do the job well, apart from being black. This latter problem means I am not as conspicuous as I would like in commuting traffic and will be solved by a reflective vest adaptation very soon.


New carbon seat

A mate made me a new carbon fibre seat for the FF. Getting it up and running has been a bit of a saga as the frame was not really built for this type of seat. However, with a bit of cutting, pasting and unpicking it now seems well set up. The new config sits me about 30mm closer the the ground but about the same distance from the pedals. Handle bars could now be adjusted. It is very comfortable, although 90km is the longest ride I have done in one go so far.

Solving the squeeking was a minor saga and the peleton of squirrels accompanied our rides in Bright last week.


RidewithGPS map for Gippsland Gambol 600

This is the link to the RidewithGPS (http://ridewithgps.com/routes/139068) map for the full 600 km circuit we will be using for the Gippsland Gambol in October.

Remember that you can register for 200, 300, 4000 & 600 km ACP brevets.


Gippsland Gambol 30 – 31 October

Details will be loaded here very soon.

In the interim:

The ride is on and runs from Stratford. Start is 6:00AM Saturday morning and the loops will be 200 to Woodside, Traralgon, Heyfield and Stratford; 150 Paynesville, Bairnsdale, Stratford; 200 Loch Sport, Seaspray, Stratford; 50 Stratford, Briagalong, Maffra, Stratford.


Cranking up a new transmission

My little FF recumbent is now well into the forty thousands of kilometers. Like grandpa’s axe a lot of stuff has worn out and been replaced over time, but the basic configuration has remained the same.

Recently, faced with having to replace the big 67 tooth chainring (Oui, soixante sept!) at about $2 a tooth, I did some thinking.

The big ring is good but brings problems as it requires tricky front derailleur set up and depending on the range of other chainrings, clusters and the rear derailleur tricky chain management is necessary. A quick change to the big ring and big sprocket results in a very big stop, and possibly ugly repairs to der and hangers.

I’ve installed front 53-39-30 rings and a new Greenspeed

GS capreo 9-32 cluster 2 leading and trailing spokes x 32

rear hub, which takes a Capreo cluster.

It rides beautifully and I am loving the range of gears available on the large and granny rings. Before I could only access a couple on each ring.


plites is the name I adopted for the first batch of LED headlights I built for randonneuring.  They are 3W Luxeons, controlled by a Flupic board, powered by a range of 4.5V battery packs.  This was one of the protoypes. Three years on it is still going strong!1stflu500