Friday, 15 August 2014

BIKEfun Classic Suspension for BBB

While I was at the Brompton World Championships a couple of weeks back I spotted something that I had wondered about for a long time.

I saw a suspension block for the Brompton that was a little different to Brompton's standard & firm blocks.

As always I want to make BBB unique so when I saw the BIKEfun Classic Suspension Block in person I was hooked. These suspension blocks are a combination of a metal spring and a rubber/plastic compound which when combined are equivalent to the Brompton FIRM suspension block. These suspension blocks come with 2 rubber compounds so you can tailor the the block to suit your riding style. I was more drawn to the fact that you could get the springs in different colours to match your Brompton if you so wished. I ofcourse got the yellow version, even the rubber compound has a yellowish tint to it was well. ;)

BIKEfun Classic Suspension Block
Using parts from the original Brompton suspension block it was easy to put together, remembering to tighten up the nylon locking bolt as when I changed the suspension block last time I didn't and came apart a few days later.

BIKEfun Classic Suspension Block in Yellow

BIKEfun Classic Suspension Block

As I am a heavy rider I choose to put the harder rubber compound in and it felt good on my short test ride. Following is the video of the ride with camera mounted to the saddle rails. I'm jumping up and down on the pedals so you can see how much the block compresses.



Available here @ Bike Gang

Monday, 11 August 2014

Always bet on BLACK

Small upgrade I have had my eye on for quiet a while was the Lightskin seat post.

Back in June 2013 I actually won a Silver Lightskin Seatpost in a competition (Blog post here). It was a nice surprise and I did use it for a little while. But I had always had my eye on a black seat post to keep in line with BBB's styling so sold it after afew months. I always promised BumbleB that I would get a black version when I had the funds together.

Features of LightSKIN

  • LED: Five (5) High Brightness LED's
  • Duration: Minimum 50hrs (5LED ON mode No.5) - 400hrs (3LED mode No. 2)
  • Batteries: 2 AA's 
  • Waterproof for everyday life
  • Modes: 10Modes (5x 5LED's - 5x 3LED's)
  • Weight 36g Approx (without batteries)

PAD: 6th August 2014
Black Lightskin Seatpost for the Brompton

The batteries are inserted at the bottom of the seat post and has a big rubber end for protection too, so changing the batteries is easy.
Where the batteries are changed


Short video of the different lighting sequences of the Lightskin seat post.


Good for an emergency backup incase your main rear light is out. I personally wouldn't use it as my main rear only though, just not a wide enough beam but can't be stolen or forgotten as a normal rear light.

Got mine from rad-cafe on ebay £59 (UK based ebayer), can even pick up in Central London.

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Brompton World Championship Video #BWC2014

Well here is my final edit of my Brompton World Championship 2014 onboard video.

I think next year I will put a 50T chainring on as the track isn't that hilly and I'd probably be faster without working so hard.

Also maybe a more stable platform for the front view, on the handle bars its abit too shaky for my liking. Have to figure somehow to mount on the front block maybe. 2 Garmin VIRB's would be perfect :D

Full length is about 34mins, don't think you all want to view all that so I speeded it up abit (x4)

*best viewed in HD ofcourse



Enjoy and definitely see you all next year :)

Friday, 1 August 2014

#BWC2014 Onboard 500m Sprint video

Onboard with BumbleB during the Brompton Sprint on the 27th July

With my reduced gearing (44T chainring) my overall top speed is lower at my maximum cadence so anyone with a bigger chain ring would have a higher top speed at the same cadence.

I can normally keep my cadence around the 100rpm mark for longer but going full out at 120 rpm is pushing my envelope. As you can see on the video I faded out about 50m from the finish line.

Damn good fun though 


Tuesday, 29 July 2014

The legend does the #BWC2014 TREBLE

As dawn broke on the 27th day of July 2014 we knew it was THE day. 

The day we have all been training for and had it our diaries for months. 

All the training was done. 

All the maintenance was done. 

Getting the cycling outfit perfect was done. 

All we could do was wait....

I had finished tinkering with BumbleB early in the afternoon and the legend was ready. I managed to get a good nap in the afternoon as I knew I wouldn't get much sleep the night before Brompton Cycling Festival.

Woke up bring and early as I normally do  and packed the car and we was off to Goodwood Motor Circuit, Chichester. The traffic seem quiet light and I was grateful as I wanted to get there in plenty of time to soak up the atmosphere as I had missed it so much.

We registered and I happened to just miss out on "007" by 1 as my rider number was "006"

006 licensed to "Buzz"
I spotted  that Mark W had recently arrived. First thing I wanted to do after registering was to get a photo for the front of the Goodwood Motor Circuit. So off we went into the site to see what was on show. I also remembered to pick up a few items I had ordered and wanted to make sure they fitted so if needed I could swap. Now heavy with goodies me and Mark W headed back to our cars to offload everything and spotted Mr.Orange heading in. Looking very happy to be back at Goodwood Motor Circuit.
We have properly arrived. #bromptonbicycle #urban #bwc2014
BumbleB & Green Machine

As I wondered around I had lots of people coming up to me saying they have read this silly little blog and enjoyed all the adventures me & the legend have been on. It still surprises me that people read my ramblings and people from all over the world come to this event which I think is totally awesome.



It just goes to show you the "Power of the FOLD!"


All registered and ready to go #bromptonbicycle #urban #bwc2014


First on the timetable was the Brompton Sprint.
12 Riders 500 meters away from the finishing straight with Bromptons in the "parked" position. Then riders stand about 10meters away for a "running start".

Mr.O, Mark W & Me heading to the Sprint start

Heading to the sprint #bwc2014 #bromptonbicycle #brompton
Sizing up the competition


Laurence G "GameFace"

I've never done this before so was abit nervous. We would set of in groups of 12 so I didnt step up til  I had see a few groups set off to see how it was done. It looked pretty easy but then again, actually doing it is another thing completely.

Sprint starting. #urban #bromptonbicycle #bwc2014
Waiting for our turn at the Brompton Sprint

When the horn went off and I ran as fast as I dared cause I realised at the moment I had never actually ran with my cycling shoes. Grabbed BBB by the saddle rolling him just to make sure I didn't slow my momentum down step onto the left pedal but NOT clipping in, got my right leg over the top bar, clipped right first then the left and pedalled like crazy when I was clipped in fully. It was pretty intense and I knew I had a pretty good cadence but not the stamina. After about 300m I could feel myself flagging abit as I couldn't keep the pace up. 

Update: Thinking back on it seeing I was on a 44T chainring my cadence had topped out at around 120rpm, with. 50T chainring my speed would have been faster at the same cadence. So I think I did pretty well on a 44T 

Next time I will do a warm up lap as I didn't do anything to warm up this time.

Thanks to Penny G for taking the photos during the Sprint

Getting pipped at the line
Sprint done. Lots of fun  #urban #bromptonbicycle #bwc2014
Brompton Sprint Medal


Now after the Sprint was the 26km (14miles) Brompton Meander around Sussex country side. First of was 1 complete circuit of the Goodwood Motor Circuit and then out of the main gate onto the country roads. We had plenty of time to get around the course and there where plenty of marshals along the way cheering and pointing us in the right direction.

Start of the #Brompton meander #bromptonbicycle #urban #bwc2014
Starting the Brompton Meander

The boys are back in town #urban #bromptonbicycle #bwc2014
#selfie time
Just before the first pitstop there was a huge long hill which even with my reduced gearing spanked me hard. I did stop a couple of times as I wasn't focusing on my breathing to well. Note to self to do more training on my breathing.

First pitstop on the #brompton meander  #urban #bromptonbicycle #bwc2014
1st Pitstop

I thought the meander was going to be longer for some reason and brought my hydro pack full of water. If I'd known it wasn't going to be long and also have 2 pitstops I would have just taken my normal water bottle and left my mini O bag as we had full motorbike support and ambulance crews near by.

I have to say I did like the scotch egg, which was no supermarket job that's for sure. I also sampled some crackers with cheese which may have sparked off a slight headache but could have been cause I wasn't drinking enough fluids but after having a few big mouth fulls of water it quickly passed. After leaving the first pit-stop it was ofcourse time for the down hill. I ALWAYS love this part and it didn't disappoint me.

Actually there was a disappointment as I was speeding down the hill and cars where actually slowing me down LOL I checked my data on this part and I topped out at 44.5mph which is now my highest speed ever ;)

2nd pitstop on the meander. #urban #bromptonbicycle #bwc2014
2nd Pit stop

Didn't stay long at the 2nd pit-stop and almost forgot to take a photo, another nice choice of munches to keep a Bromptoneer going.

Finally coming back to Goodwood Motor Circuit I was greeted by Bob H one of our LBC members handing out me second medal of the day.

Brompton Meander medal. #urban #bromptonbicycle #bwc2014
Brompton Meander Medal
With the Meander done there was a few hrs to wonder around and as always I get stopped often and people asking for photos of them with the legend. One lady I think was French or Spanish seemed very excited to finally meet the legend and with me not being able to speak a different language and her English not so good but we muddled though and she ofcourse for a few snaps together with the legend.

Now it was starting to get even more busy and the main event was next to come, the Brompton world Championships. Soon there was Bromptons everywhere in every different colour, every where you looked you saw something different. What I love about Brompton bicycles is that EVERY bike is the same but then people put there own personal spin on it to make it truly there own, basically an extension of themselves & personality.

Just a little pink. #urban #bromptonbicycle #bwc2014
Pink everywhere

 


Then it was time for the main event itself. Being rider number 006 meant I had a good run though folded Bromptons before I even got to BumbleB.

I forgot to take BBB's water bottle off as I had been drinking alot to stop myself from dehydrating also figuring about the weather but I didn't hear anything about not wearing the jackets like last year as the weather was alot hotter then. I knew I could leave the bottle at my start pin and retrieve it later. 

The legend is ready

A fellow Bromptoneer helping me with a selfie
At this point I was starting to really get nervous. I was nervous that I wouldn't be faster than last yr, had all the training, sweat blood and tears been for nothing.

This was the moment of truth

The moment the legend will rise or fall....

We waited.....

Our focus narrowed to the task at hand.....

I heard the horn go and I wasn't running or walking towards BBB. I was almost floating in some way. I felt very charm even though I was unfolding BBB, rolling off the grass where I would clip in and cycling intensely for the next 30-40 mins.

Off out onto the track I felt I was going into reverse as lots of riders seemed to be passing me by without any effort. But my mistake last time was to try and chase them down and waste energy. Over the past year I realised that I have to pace myself and even though somewhere serious riders not all of them will be gone in the distance I will slowly but surely catch up to them and even past them.

All the videos and techniques on "drafting" came to mind and I was on the hunt for someone of same kind of pace esp when there was a headwind hitting me I could hide behind them getting alittle rest. I have to say I never really though this stuff worked but having used it properly it actually does.

After the 2 laps heard someone coming beside me, saying he would take the lead for awhile, hell someone had been drafting me alittle but decided we was of the same pace and would help each other out. Our own little 2 man cycling peloton, I have to say it actually made the race easier and I felt my average speed being higher than BWC2013.

I just focused on my breathing and cadence, when I felt a little flagged my new peloton buddy would take the lead for awhile and when he flagged abit I would take over. When Travis B (later found out) took over I would focus on his rear wheel so hard nothing else existed. I swear ALOT of the time I was less than 3inches from his rear tire most of the time.

I set up my garmin to show me the my last lap time & my average speed so I could work out if I was atleast keeping the pace. To my surprise when comparing the data I was actually shaving seconds off each lap and my avg speed was WELL into the teens (17.1mph to be exact)

We came around the final corner and Travis B came along side me again and we shook hands down the back straight and he asked " shall we cross the line together?" I said yes but then I said to Travis B

"Well this is a race isn't it, Lets do it?"

He agreed and we went full out on the last 150meters or so. Don't ask me where the hell I got this sudden power injection from it just happened and next thing I know I'm pedalling like the devil was on my butt trying poke me with a fork. According to my data this is where I did my Max speed for the ride at 27.9mph

Our Results:

Brompton Sprint 500m Heat
Finishing Time: 00:00:53
Overall: 41 / 81
Gender: 43 / 69
Avg Speed: 11.5mph*
Max Speed: 26.4mph*

Brompton Meander 2014
Distance: 13.78mi *
Time 1:02:31*
Avg Speed: 13.2mph*
Max Speed: 44.5mph*

Brompton World Championships 2014 (4x 3.8km / 2.4mi)
Finishing Time: 00:32:54 (My Garmin data & Brompton Timing same)

Unfold: 00:01:14
Lap 1: 00:08:18
Lap 2: 00:08:18
Lap 3: 00:08:11
Lap 4: 00:08:05

Overall 309 / 521
Gender: 259 / 390

Avg Speed: 17.1mph*
Max Speed: 27.9mph*
*data from my Garmin Edge 800

With having to change the Brompton Festival to a 1 day event Brompton very kindly offered everyone a voucher of £20 to be spent on the day, which I spent on a nice pair of Brompton socks & a china mug.

I'd like to thank Brompton Bicycles, Goodwood Motor Circuit & everyone that attended an awesome day of pure Bromptoneering.

I hope to see you all next year cause I sure will be there and even faster than ever, trust me is going to be.....LEGENDARY!!! :)

Well earned metals

Thursday, 24 July 2014

#BWC2014 We're so excited, we just can't hide it!


This weekend it is the biggest event on our calendar, the Brompton World Championships 2014 @ Goodwood Motor Circuit.

We have entered "The Triple" 


Brompton Sprint: 500m, heats & finals
Brompton Meander: 26km / 16 miles
Brompton World Championships: 4x 3.8kms / 2.4mi (15.2kms / 9.6mi)

Goodwood Motor Circuit


Have a quick read of 2013 event with photos and even a video of the ride itself in the link at the end of this post.

I always get very excited afew days before as it is the biggest event on the legend's calendar. As always we shall be suited & booted and will be very glad to meet our fellow Bromptoneers from all over the world and see and hear about latest upgrades & rides around the world. As always Brompton have never disappointed when organizing any event they are involved with.

BWC2013

Will Butler-Adams meets the Legend @ BWC2013
Over the next few days I shall be doing some serious maintenance session to get BBB ready for Sunday, mainly cleaning. Also got 1 last item to get for my outfit. Also making sure every gadget I have as well as myself is FULLY charged and ready to go ;)

So please if you are coming to Goodwood Motor Racing track on the 27th July, please say hi to us, I don't think you will have any trouble in finding us ;)

Blog Post: Brompton World Championships 2013

YouTube Video: OnBoard Brompton BumbleB BWC 2013

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Legend gets a brand new bag ;)

Back in early in June, on my travels though the Brompton facebook groups I spotted something that perked my interest.

It was a design based on Brompton's Folding Basket but instead the material of the basket was red with white spots. It looked pretty cool and ofcourse I thought of something for the Legend. Sometimes I have big oversized loads and wanted to make sure I could transport it safely and this looked pretty good for those rare occasions.

I made a passing comment about would love one but in BumbleB's famous black & yellow stripes.

Not long after I made this comment I was contacted by Valeria Lopes who made the custom folding basket and asked if she could find something suitable if I would be interested in one.

It took me all of 1 billionth of a second to say ofcourse we would be interested so long that the design was right.

A few days later I got a fb mail with a photo attached.

I nearly fell over.....

I thought DAMN its perfect for BBB and was a pretty good early birthday present for my little folding buddy.

So we waited..........while I waited I had to purchase "Brompton Bag Frame For C,T,Folding Basket" which you should be able to get at your local Brompton stockist.


I swear time dragged on, I was tracking the package online and swear the courier was leaving my package till the last possible moment. I had to actually stop tracking as it seemed that took forever to get here to the HiVE.

I came home to the HiVE after work and there was a small package waiting for me, I don't know why but I expected it to be big like the framed basket. *duh*

When I opened up the package I was even more surprised and delighted what I found. So I wasted no time in installing the frame and brace.

24 litres capacity

Folded Basket
From what I can tell the capacity is the same as the original Brompton Folded Basket and appears to be made from hard wearing materials.

Also there are little side pockets as well which can be very handy as well.

The basket uses the same frame & brace as the Brompton Basket and is simple to install and using very good velco straps to keep it all attached to the Brompton Basket frame and brace on the inside.





So I  just had to pop out to get some shopping done to see how it felt to use in person. :D



 As you can see it takes quiet a good load.

I'm very happy with my bag as it compliments BBB's legendary style ;)

Made by the awesome Valeria Lopes who is on facebook (fb mail her for prices & requests) & a few Brompton related facebook groups or email her valeriabclopes@hotmail.com.

Contact her and you can discuss all types of different designs patterns. Welcomes feedback and improvements.

peace
BBB

Sunday, 15 June 2014

A close shave. TWICE

So this morning like normal I'm heading to work. I stop at a big set of traffic lights and wait. While waiting I saw a woman driver on her iPhone & teenager next to her on theirs. I made a mental note to watch her positioning and let her go ahead of me when the lights changed.

She went ahead at the junction and into the distance. Now after the junction starts a cycle lane going all the way to Hackney. 

I'm coming along at a decent speed and spot the same driver up ahead. My B senses are tingling a little so I cover my brakes just in case as there is a side road coming up. Just after the side street is the entrance to KFC. She turns into the KFC just as I'm under taking in the cycle lane with NO indicators STILL on her iPhone. 

I shout out, no I SCREAM out loud at her and put my body against the car and push BBB away from going underneath the car while she is STILL turning into the KFC. I was banging on the car as hard as I could but she kept going for about a meter before she stopped. She only stopped when most of her car was in the entrance to KFC. 

I'm screaming at her asking her what the hell she was doing on her phone while driving the car. 

"It was an important call/message about a job "

This just made me even MORE angry at her and I let rip asking her

"Was your mobile more important than my life? You couldn't wait til you was parked in KFC to deal with it? And you got kids in your car with you?"

I checked myself & BBB but we was ok just really angry. You would this this was the end of it but oh no. 

About 1 mile down the road again just after a incline from a set of lights another car was ahead of me while I was using the shared bus/cycle lane and cause of the down hill section and was going at a fair speed when another car in front of me left turned on me without ANY indicators, just turned. 

I slammed on the brakes again and put my body up on the car and pushed BBB away again banging hard on the body of the car SCREAMING thinking " Shit something really wants me dead. That's twice in less than 10mins"

Again I'm SCREAMING at the guy driving asking him what the f does he think his doing without indicators. 

He then said " You was going pretty fast and never saw you"

"How did you know how fast I was going if you didn't see me? So you DID see me just didn't care and turned left in me. Yeah?"

I let rip once again as I was double angry. A few guys came out from the car wash place right at the turning looking to see what the noise was about but me & BBB was ok just crazy mad. 

I've been doing my commute for just shy of 5yrs now and NEVER been cut up like that before and now twice within 10mins?

Right I've calmed down and again we are OK. 

But anyone using the roads look before you turn pram, bicycle, car, van, bus, truck whatever flipping look before you turn left or right.