28 April 2019

Fresh Goods Sunday - I-Cycles Hat

When we were on holiday up in the Scottish borders we called in past a few bike shops, as you do! I Cycles have moved from the old, smaller shop on the corner of the road to the Innerleithan trails to the old church / Alpine Bikes old shop. It has a much larger floor area and they have the shop stacked full of goodies. After a good walk around I bough three items including a new woolly hat. I was not really after one but fancied supporting the shop. A woolly hat never comes in wrong but this one does not have a Thinsulate lining so will keep for the less windy / slightly more warmer days.
RRP £9.99

Weekley Catch Up - nothing exciting

Ian Dunn tipped me off about cheap Cannondale water bottles in the Merlin Easter sale. Funnily enough I have been looking at Cannondale water bottles in a couple of shops but the £10+ rrp put me off. I got four Cannondale water bottle, 2no x 750ml & 2no x 600ml for £9.47! bargain. I also ordered another small tool bottle and a pair of new Richey spd cleats for my winter boots as the cleats are well worn. 

As residents of County Durham we also had this leaflet delivered this week by the postman informing us of all the road closure's for the Velo North Event. There is a more detailed map on there website.

I have not been out on the bike this week as my back has gone off again but got a walk on Thursday and Friday. Walking seems to ease the pain! Talking of pain I had to ring the hospital last Thursday before the long bank hol weekend as there was a lump / growth appeared on my back. Tuesday I was at the hospital to see my surgeon and clinical nurse, took one look and said it has to come out. The next day I had the call to come for my pre op check up / multi form filling / tests etc on the Friday and the operation next Wednesday. Talk about quick! Oh well certainly cannot complain about the speed of the NHS. So that will be me back on the slab again, operation number 9!

23 April 2019

Bank Hol Monday - Hike around Stanhope Common with Jane

Forecast was for more sun and heat so Jane wanted to go and do the hiking loop around Stanhope. We were up and out early'ish. Just as we parked up the air ambulance helicopter flew overhead and landed in the show field on the opposite side of the river. We set off on our hike through the back streets of Stanhope then onto the climb from the quarry and onto the moor. It is a canny climb up but it was lovely and sunny / hot. Once onto the open moor we had a lovely chilling headwind all the way across. The next wooded section was more sheltered and no wind but still warm. The track through the woods is bone dry. This takes you out at the garage end of the village then it was down to the railway station café for a cuppa and cake. From there along the riverside, over the bridge then back over the stepping stones at the ford. When we were walking back to the carpark the police had the area closed off near the Chinese takeaway with forensic scientists examining the scene of crime! Not sure what had gone on but sure that is why the air ambulance landed earlier in the morning. Once back at the van it was time to change out of our walking boots and we had a walk down to the village for some shopping. We also called in past the park at Wolsingham for the ice cream van on the way home! below are some sunny snaps, enjoy and hopefully more soon -

21 April 2019

Fresh Goods Sunday - Finish Line E-Bike Chain Lube 120ml

I was looking at this chain lube in Arragons Cycles, Penrith when we were last over there. I asked what is different to this and say the normal red or green Finish Line that I use. They said they did not really know but it was more suited to E hybrid / commuting bikes. Once back home I did a little more reading up on the product and thought I would give it a go. With it being quite new to the market the shops do not really discount it and is quiet hard to get hold of. I ordered via click n collect from Evans Cycles through top cash back. It arrived in a couple of days and cracked it open after I degreased my chain on the Synapse Neo bike. It is no where near as thick as the green xc lube but slightly thicker than the red dry lube. I put on one coat and wiped off the excess and left it to dry. Then I applied a second coat and again left it to dry. It has done three 40ish - 50+ mile rides and is bone dry again. The rides were all  dry with hardly any mud but a lot of dust. The chain still looks clean so I will wash the bike and reapply again. Time will tell if it lasts as long as my other regular Finish Line lubes. One thing I did note was how quite the chain was after applying the lube and it had dried.
RRP £9.99 and I paid £9.49 inc next day delivery. If you shop around you can get it for £7.99 but have to pay p&p unless to can build you order value up.

Manufacturers blurb -
E-Bikes place high demands on their drivetrains that differentiate them from standard bicycles. To meet these needs and the needs of E-Bike riders, Finish Line has developed an E-Bike specific lubricant.
Using the latest lubrication technology and following e-Bike manufacturer specifications, Finish Line has developed a unique lubricant to keep e-Bikes running like new.
Finish Line e-Bike Chain Lube™ is formulated specifically for lubricating electric assist drivetrains that are subject to particularly high pressure and torque. Most mid-drive e-Bike systems will add up to an additional 250 Watts to the rider's input, and some performance models can add up to 350 Watts. This consistent, high power means that chains experience much higher rates of wear. While developing our e-Bike Chain Lube Our goal was to create a lubricant that could not only stand up to the high torque associated with electric assist drivetrains, but which also provided long lubrication intervals, would shed dirt, prevent premature wear, and provide superior protection against rust and corrosion. With a semi-dry formulation, and our proprietary blend of high pressure and corrosion inhibiting additives, Finish Line's e-Bike Chain Lube™ delivers on all fronts. 

Easter Sunday - Sunny & Hot Local Gravel / Coutry Lanes - Hurbuck Cottages, Parkhead, Rookhope, Stanhope - Synpase Neo E Bike

I was out on my own this morning as Angus & Arran have gone to watch the motorcross bike racing at Wooley Grange and Jane was not up. I was spinning the pedals by 7am to a lovely sunrise up at Hurbuck Cottages. I picked up the line to the Consett junction and turned left and headed all the way up to Parkhead café. I had quiet a strong headwind all the way up but it was sunny and warm. I then followed the off road section across the moor to drop down in to Rookhope. That was still very wet and muddy in places. On the road out of Rookhope I turned left and up the massive climb with fantastic views from the top to drop down a lovely narrow, twisty descent to bring me out at Stanhope. From there I took the back lane and up another steep climb to get onto the moor which brings you out at the cattle grid on the Crawleyside bank. I did Crawleyside on the off road side, through the quarry at the top then dropped onto the road. The descent off the top towards Castleside was very fast with a tailwind today. Turned right and around the country lane to cross the A68 then back lanes all the way back to Hurbuck Cottages. Garmin stats 37 miles, 2hrs 55min, ave 12.6mph and climbed 3100ft. Below are quiet a few sunny snaps from the ride, enjoy and hopefully more soon - ps here is a GARMIN LINK