Saturday, 22 March 2014

How fast I go I do not know

If you're into racing bikes you tend to have a special love for speed. Its not like speed in a car, there is a biological relationship. A symbiosis between bicycle and human.

Any fool can press hard on the accelerator in a car, after all.

I've been riding the Kinesis TK2 for a couple of years now. I first saw an ad for the factory bike in CTCs Cycle magazine. The factory bike wasn't quite what I wanted - it had great spec with Tiagra kit and (I think) Shimano wheels, but I always liked Mavic Aksiums. I rode for 2 years on Aksiums and then switched back to Mavic Open Pros with Hope Pro 3 hubs. The dogs danglies of custom wheel imo, made up for me by Cycleworld in Thornhill.

A few times I have chatted to workmates about how they'd seen me out riding. They being either on foot or in car, both situations saying they'd seen me "flying along". I've never particularly thought of myself as a fast rider, I do appreciate that the right kit does improve speed however. Bladed spokes, bladed forks, drop bars, narrow tyres and hubs with quality bearings; add to that clothing that doesn't flap in the wind like lycra and your average speed increases compared to a bloke in normal clothes on an upright bike.

I'm not saying "wear lycra" here, I enjoy riding in normal clothes too.

I've tried several times to fit my old Cateye Strada to the Kinesis but several problems have presented themselves. Cable ties tend to be too short to fit in the small holes and around the fork itself. I did try today to fit the sensor on the rear stay but the distance to the bars tends to mean no signal gets through. I could mount the display elsewhere - but this kind of devalues to object of a display.

I suppose I could get a GPS system. I've craved for one of these for several years now, but £300 for a Garmin is well out of my range. Strava does now and again tempt me, I often wonder how I compare to others my age on similar hills ...but GPS is a lot of money for someone on my income.

I suppose thats one of the joys of racing bikes - they can be had for not much money. Its all the other bits and bobs that cost the earth.


  1. What about using a smartphone app? You can pick up an older galaxy in good nick for about £30-40 and a handlebar holder would be cheap. The apps are free.

    1. I cant really justify a new/sh phone tbh. I barely use the LG smart phone I do have :-P