Bike Items for Sale - Here's a photo journal of bike parts that I'm trying to clear out of my workshop.
Shipping is $10 or (actual shipping charges + (optional) insurance charges + delivery confirmation fee), whichever is greater. I will try to find cheapest shipping option (e.g. USPS for US Domestic delivery) or will ship according to your carrier of preference.
Some of the parts are new, some are used. If you think my item pricing is off or you're buying multiple items, please make me an offer.
I am selling everything "as is". But, if you buy an item that is dead on arrival, damaged in shipment, or you believe you got a raw deal, please contact me as soon as possible so we can work out a solution. Given the time involved in selling these items I am not making a profit on this and am more interested in seeing components and parts I no longer use but that have remaining useful life to find a home with other bicycle enthusiasts, where they will be used instead of collecting dust in my workshop.
Contact me at the following . It will help if you include the links to photos of the items that interest you. All prices are in US Dollars.
Entire Blog - Display the entire Blog for all years. This is a large file!
|Bike Ridden:||Power Pursuit F2|
|Cumulative climbing:||13350 feet|
|Avg. Speed (moving):||19.7 mph|
|Max. Speed:||38.9 mph|
|Nominal System Voltage:||48|
|Battery energy capacity:||2800 wh|
|Battery energy consumed:||2625† wh|
|Battery Amps-Hour Used:||49.9|
|Regen Amps-Hour Recovered:||8.7|
|Peak Forward Current:||24.1 Amps|
|Peak Regen Current:||35.7 Amps|
Knoxville Double Century (Abridged), September 24, 2016 - I had last ridden the Knoxville Double Metric in 2001. At that time I had missed the riding the roads on the northern loop. Today I would make up for that omission.
I hadn't signed up for the ride, and I wasn't even sure I was going to do the ride until I managed to get out of bed at 0300 on the morning of the ride. I had planned to get myself to the start in Vacaville by 0700 and be on the road before 0730. This was about 2 hours after the official start time. Zach was riding the entire route on his electric assist trike, and I planned to meet up with him somewhere along Berryessa Knoxville Road north of the Pope Canyon rest stop.
I carried enough battery capacity to do the entire route, but I wanted to get some sleep the night before, so I decided to cut out the Napa Valley portion of the route, and stick to a simple figure-8 loop by taking the shortest outbound route that got me to the Pope Canyon rest stop. I felt no compulsion to ride exactly 200 miles. 170 or 175 was good enough.
I was on the road shortly after 0700. It wasn't long before I was warm enough to peel down to short sleeves as I was riding through the sleepy bedroom community of Fairfield.
I cruised quickly up Suisun Valley Road and Wooden Valley Road. At CA121 I turned right and headed north instead of turning left toward Napa Valley. I quickly found myself waiting at a one-way control for several minutes.
At CA128 I turned left and cruised north until I reached Turtle Rock Bar & Grill. Just past the Grill I turned right on Berryessa Knoxville Road. About a half hour later I arrived at the Pope Canyon rest stop where I ran into George Pinney, Quack Cyclist, and one of the ride's organizers.
"Have you seen a guy on a low trike come through yet?", I asked.
"Oh, you mean Zach?", George replied.
"Oh, I saw him some distance back, about 45 minutes from here."
While I waited for Zach to arrive, I spoke with George about my bike, his velomobile project, and other related topics.
"Help yourself to any food or water," he offered. "It'll get thrown away if it doesn't get eaten."
I felt a little guilty taking any supplies from the rest stop since I hadn't registered for the ride, so I declined.
When Zach finally arrived he was having trouble with one of his batteries, and I discovered he had hooked up an extension cord backwards. After reversing the cord, everything worked normally.
I was relieved to get back in the bike and to get moving again as I was getting hot standing around in the sun at the shadeless rest stop.
We proceeded over a long bridge crossing Putah Creek and worked our way north along the western shore of Lake Berryessa. Then as the road lost its center stripe, we left the reservoir for good and started a rolling climb alongside Eticuera Creek, crossing it several times at concrete fords. Several groups of hunters in fatigues, rifles slung over their shoulders, stood by the road or walked along it.
This remote section of Berryessa Knoxville Road was as rough as a paved road gets, featuring many rocks and unfilled potholes. Although we both managed to proceed faster than the unassisted cyclists, I found myself concentrating most of the time on picking a clean and smooth line.
As the road started up Knoxville Creek the grade pitched upward and climbed more steeply near the top. Then just before we entered a short tunnel under the McLaughlin Mine the road regained its center stripe. A short distance beyond that we paused at the next rest stop that featured a broad view of the fire-blackened hills to the south and west.
The rest of the day we would be riding through areas that had burned sometime in the last few years. The destruction looked like a war zone in places.
Beyond the rest stop the road rolled up and down. Then after crossing into Lake County the road name changed to Morgan Valley and headed down more often than up.
I used the opportunity put some energy back into my battery by regenerating at a speed between 20 and 30 mph. Faster than that and I would lose too much energy to air friction. Some upright riders and the tandem team zipped past me on the downhill.
Zach was uncertain if he would be riding the "Highland" route through Cobb or the "Lowland" route. I was going to find lunch in Lower Lake while he would get lunch at the official rest stop. He would call me and let me know which route he planned to take after lunch so we could again hook up.
When I got into town I looked in vain for a deli or some place I could pick up a quick lunch that I could keep down while riding my bike another 100 miles. KFC and Long John Silver wasn't what I had in mind.
I circled back through town to the official lunch stop and found George again with whom I inquired about lunch spots in town.
"Just eat here!", he insisted, gesturing toward the picnic area. "We've got plenty of food. Have a burrito!"
At this point I gave in and ate a burrito, V8, potato chips, and refilled my water bladder.
At lunch Zach and I encountered Jason Perez who had just arrived at lunch and had earlier in the season won the recumbent division of this year's Triple Crown Stage Race.
"You can have my burrito," Jason offered. "I'm not eating."
After lunch Zach, Jason and Jason's riding companion, Roy, left a few minutes before me. I encountered them again a short distance up Seigler Canyon Road, but I did not ride with them for long.
As the road pitched up I needed to keep my speed above about 8 mph to keep my motor operating in its efficient zone and not overheating, even with the Hubsinks (hub motor heat sinks) I was beta-testing today. Zach told me later that his motor started to overheat on the climb. My motor got to 95C, not quite to the lower threshold (100C) where my controller starts to roll back current.
We regrouped at CA175 and started south through Loch Lomond, Hobergs, Cobb, and Whispering Pines. Hobergs and Cobb had seen much destruction from the recent forest fires. The cool, dark, pine forest that had stood here upon my last visit to the area appeared to have been clear-cut by fire, leaving the area barren, dusty, and hot. A number of properties were being rebuilt, but many others had "for sale" signs out front.
On the descent into Middletown Jason zipped ahead and even Zach let loose on the smooth straight downhill. I regenerated not so much because I needed to but because I could divert my eyes from the road once in a while to enjoy the scenery by keeping my speed around 25 mph. I don't often ride in the Cobb Mountain area.
After getting through Middletown we started down Butts Canyon Road, stopping for a few minutes at a rest stop near Detert Reservoir, then continued down into the bowels of Butts Canyon.
It was here that my drivetrain momentarily seized, then functioned normally. It was an odd sensation, as if the cranks had much resistance initially, then became easy to spin once I overcame the initial resistance. At first I though perhaps the kickstand was rubbing the tire or the mid-drive was sticking. I stopped the bike to check, but I found nothing amiss. The problem did not recur.
After Zach stopped to swap a battery we pressed on into Pope Valley, then Chiles Valley. As we began the descent into Chiles Canyon, Zach passed a group of upright cyclists, but the descent became technical before I could slip past, so I hung back.
After a short stop at Moore Creek rest stop we continued down to Lake Hennessy, then climbed up Sage Canyon on CA128. It was here I decided that the state highways all had better surface treatment than the county roads. Although I prefer these days to ride during daylight, I decided that if I found myself riding at night I would prefer to be riding the smooth state highways over the rock-strewn, pot-holed county roads of Northern California.
At my suggestion Zach increased his assist level from "2" to "3" so that he could cruise level ground around 25-27 mph. We moved along the straight highway faster after we passed the Turtle Rock Bar & Grill.
At Cardiac Hill I again used full power to climb. At first I regenerated at 25 mph on the descent, but since I had just passed other cyclists near the top of the hill, they were starting to overtake me on the downhill. I stopped regenerating manually, and allowed the bike to coast up to its natural regeneration speed, which for the battery voltage at the time was around 39 mph.
We stopped for a few minutes at the last rest stop before finishing the last 13 miles back to the finish as the sun began to set behind the hills to the west. We arrived at the finish just as it would otherwise have been time to turn on headlights and taillights if they weren't already on.
I met George at the finish again and asked if I could get dinner in exchange for payment, assuming they had enough food. He insisted I eat but refused payment. Thanks, George.
After we had finished dinner Jason and Roy rolled in. They had apparently taken a wrong turn down the dead-end Steele Canyon Road, getting significant bonus miles and climbing.
As we were getting ready to leave dinner and pack up the bikes I learned that Jason had ridden to the start from home and would be riding 60 miles back to Brentwood by bike, then returning the next day for Chuck Bramwell's presentation. I offered to drop him at home so he could get some sleep, and he accepted.
After dropping Jason in Brentwood I continued home, arriving just before midnight, the effect of my one Mountain Dew starting to wear off. It was 0130 before I was in bed with the lights off, a 22.5 hour day.
†Net consumption was (175.8 miles) * (12.3 wh/mi) = 2162 wh.
|Bike Ridden:||Power Gold Rush|
|Cumulative climbing:||11270 feet|
|Avg. Speed (moving):||17.8 mph|
|Max. Speed:||52.4 mph|
|Nominal System Voltage:||24|
|Battery energy capacity:||2400 wh|
|Battery energy consumed:||1882 wh|
|Battery Amps-Hour Used:||71.8|
|Peak Current:||35.4 Amps|
Markleeville to Columbia, August 4, 2016 - Upon rising at 0600 after a reasonably long sleep at the Creekside Lodge in Markleeville I checked on my batteries' state of charge. Seeing that all was well, I continued to prepare my bike for departure.
While filling my bladder from the tub faucet, I could not get cold water to emerge, no matter where I dialed the temperature. I suspect the hotel's hot water recirculating system was back-feeding into the cold or the pipes were run together allowing heat to move from the hot to the cold pipes. The coldest I was able to get was slightly-warmer-than-room-temperature water from the faucet. While this felt fine as a "cold" shower the day before, I would have preferred mountain cold water in my drink bladder.
At 0700 I finished getting dressed and walked next door to Ali's Cafe for breakfast, who was in the process of opening. I ordered two servings (one after the other) of the Horchata Oatmeal, which was the perfect breakfast before a long day on the bike. Ali kindly charged me only half-price for my second helping.
After breakfast I made my final preparations, left the key in my room, and was off at 0800. The first five miles in the shady West Carson River Canyon was the only time I wore my longs. By the time I arrived at Monitor Creek I knew I would be too warm on the climb in all that clothing, so I peeled down for the rest of the day.
The climb up the west side of Monitor Pass is steepest on the segment before Heenan Lake. I tried to maintain about 10 mph, but that would have required too much power, so I settled for 8.5 mph on the steeper parts.
I stopped only when I reached the stone monument marking the summit where I met Chris Larkin who had arrived just before me. Chris was riding his own "Death Ride" and was busy refilling his water bottles from a stash he had left at the summit the day before. Chris took my photo.
A slight breeze was blowing up the slope, so my terminal velocity was only in the mid-40's (mph) on the upper part of the descent, but I did peak into the low-50's on the final run near the bottom. It was fast enough. I wanted to be able to take photos on the way down, and I felt uneasy riding one-handed on a high-speed descent and snapping photos, such as this one, with the other hand.
Up to this point I had enjoyed the road to myself with only a few passing motorists. Once I started south on US395 I would be sharing the road with heavier traffic, including occasional trucks.
As the day before passing traffic left me plenty of space. Maybe it's my unusual bike that encourages the good behavior, or just curiosity momentarily overcoming impatience in the human driver's lizard brain. Whatever the reason, I'll take it.
Centennial Bluff looked as pretty as ever in the morning light as it rose above The Meadowcliff where I had stayed on my 2014 tour.
I slowed a bit as I rode through Walker so that I could check out the motels and eateries. Then I started up the Walker River Canyon.
In 2014 I remember enjoying a mostly fast descent riding northbound late in the day. Today a slight tailwind helped, but I'd have to power uphill to maintain my target 20 mph speed.
Less than an hour passed by the time I crossed the Walker River and climbed a bit further to Sonora Junction. Although the Canyon was pretty, I was happy to be turning onto CA108, a less heavily traveled road.
As I rode south on US395 I had enjoyed a high overcast that had delayed the onslaught of the day's heat. But as I headed west into the full sun, I could now feel it's warmth beating down on me. Still the temperature was a manageable 85F.
I continued past the Marine Mountain Warfare Training Center after which I saw troops in various spots along the road. As I started up the steep switchbacks above Leavitt Meadow four enormous troop carrying trucks roared past me. I saw them later higher up the road.
The east side of Sonora Pass climbs steeply in spots but offers frequent respites from the grueling upgrade of the west side approach. It was at one of these respites that I decided to enjoy my first time-out longer than five minutes where I ate half of a PB&J sandwich that I had planned to eat at the summit. Two servings of Horchata Oatmeal hadn't quite gotten me to the summit of Sonora Pass.
With renewed energy I pressed up to the summit, where I took a selfie in front of the summit sign. Two weary PCT hikers attempting to hitch-hike into Bridgeport appeared disinclined to cross the road to play photographer.
After finishing my first sandwich I started down the west side of Sonora Pass.
It was on this section of road that I was most concerned about having a brake failure of some sort. I'm pleased to report that my brakes survived, although they made (again) a disconcerting rasping noise upon release of the brakes after a long stretch of heavy usage.
While I had seen my coolest temperature of the day (75F) at the summit, by the time I reached Eureka Valley at the bottom the temperature was back into the high-80s (F), and it felt hot.
I stopped at the Dardanelle Ranger Station to top off my water bladder. I had drunk more than 2 liters of water since leaving Markleeville and would not have had enough to see me to the end of the day's ride had I been unable to refill. Fortunately, the hydrant was fully functional.
I pressed on alongside the Middle Fork Stanislaus River, then climbed to Donnells Vista where I ate my second sandwich. Having hiked down to the railing to enjoy the best view of Donnells Reservoir, I decided to save time and not to wheel my bike down the circuitous path, contenting myself this time with the limited view from the parking lot.
The next 10 miles of CA108 west of Donnells Vista is pretty but featureless, the road traversing along a evergreen forested ridge most of the way, dipping and rising, but mostly dipping past the communities of Cascade Creek, Cow Creek, Leland Creek, and Bumblebee. Then after quite some time, the road heads down forcefully, rounds a 210-degree bend and heads into Strawberry.
Since I had filled my water at Dardanelle I had no need to stop at the Strawberry store, so I turned off onto Old Strawberry Road, retracing my route from 2014. Old Strawberry Road rejoins CA108 west of Strawberry and Pinecrest.
CA108 continues west through Cold Springs before completely losing its shoulder while traversing below Bald Mountain. It was along this stretch that a polite local towing a horse trailer declined to pass me until the road widened again. Unfortunately, one of the four motorists behind the horse trailer was not so polite at having been delayed by a minute or two.
West of Bald Mountain CA108 divides into four lanes and descends in earnest alongside Sugarpine Creek. At the base of this descent, I passed through Long Barn, Sierra Village, Mi-Wuk Village, and Sugarpine. At the west end of Sugarpine, I left CA108 for good, heading onto Middle Camp Road.
No sooner had I begun to feel relief at having left the increasingly busy main highway I was chased by a large though slightly overweight German shepherd, barking and growling. I barked and growled back at it. Fortunately, it didn't show me its teeth, but next time I pass the spot I'll keep a primed water bottle in one hand.
Middle Camp Road descends about 1300 feet steeply at times along Sullivan Creek through Brentwood Park. The road makes several forks where the correct direction is not obvious. I had to check road signs each time to make sure I went the right way.
At the bottom of this descent its name changes to Longeway before arriving at a T intersection. I turned right and continued on Big Hill Road.
Big Hill Road climbs for some distance before descending then traversing further. After it passes an old Sawmill site, Big Hill Road descends for good into Columbia, arriving at another T intersection with Yankee Hill Road. I turned right again, and a mile later I found myself back at Marble Quarry RV Park where the temperature was a toasty 95F.
After packing my bike and supplies into the van and drinking a Mountain Dew so that I wouldn't nod off during the drive home, I departed, stopping on the way for a quick dinner at the Subway in Jamestown, arriving home at sunset, concluding an enjoyable but challenging—even on an e-bike—trans-Sierra tour.
|Bike Ridden:||Power Gold Rush|
|Cumulative climbing:||11740 feet|
|Avg. Speed (moving):||15.8 mph|
|Max. Speed:||44.4 mph|
|Nominal System Voltage:||24|
|Battery energy capacity:||2400 wh|
|Battery energy consumed:||1572 wh|
|Battery Amps-Hour Used:||59.7|
|Peak Current:||28.3 Amps|
Columbia to Markleeville, August 3, 2016 - Two weeks prior I had started this tour, only to have my rear wheel begin to fail at 37 miles out from the start. At the time I decided to abort the tour, overhaul my bike, and try again at the next good opportunity.
That opportunity came two weeks later, when I could escape for a couple of days mid-week, when the weather was forecast to be clear and cooler than the prior week, although it was still quite hot, and I had gotten my bike working to my satisfaction.
As before I rose early and arrived in Columbia around 0830. I had been unable to speak to anyone at the Marble Quarry RV Park about parking my van overnight, so I left a phone message, then after arriving I filled out my paperwork at the "night desk" and left $5 for the overnight parking fee, crossing my fingers that this wouldn't be a problem for the campground host.
As I prepped the bike and my bags for departure, I spoke with a long-term resident, Cynthia, who thought it would be no problem for me to park overnight. She would even speak with the campground staff on my behalf when the office opened later that morning at 1000, after I had departed.
Riding on new brake pads for my TRP Hy/rd disk brakes I started the descent of Parrotts Ferry Road to the high bridge over the Stanislaus River arm of the New Melones Reservoir. The water level was about as it was two weeks earlier, and the temperature was about the same, mid-80s F, and dry. I climbed quickly out of the canyon to the junction with CA4.
I decided to ride with about 400 watts of assist power (about 280 watts to the rear wheel) where I had a decent shoulder on the road, increasing power to 600 watts where I didn't. This put my speed in the low-teens (mph) to mid-teens, without consuming battery energy wastefully. Those speeds also allowed me to enjoy the scenery a bit and not have to watch the road at all times.
As I climbed through Murphys where the temperature rose to 90F and then through Avery, Arnold, and Camp Connell where the temperature dropped a bit to 85F. Traffic was heaviest between Murphys and Arnold where all but two passing motorists left a politely wide buffer space. East of Camp Connell traffic thinned considerably, arriving in sporadic platoons of four or five, then allowing me to enjoy solitude for the next five or six minutes until the next wave arrived.
From Camp Connell to Bear Valley the climb is a bit of a slog, mostly a continuous moderate grade on excellent asphalt. I remember this as a nearly continuous "no brakes" high-speed descent when I rode in the other direction. Scenery was mostly of the trees, but occasionally a view would reveal itself to my right.
I was surprised that the temperature did not drop as I climbed, remaining stubbornly above 83F. Not hot by objective standards, but the increasing dryness as I rode east combined with the altitude left me feeling a bit out of balance. The air had a dusty smell to it as if much time had passed since the last rain.
When I arrived at my favorite water hydrant at the east end of Lake Alpine I discovered that the Forest Service had shut it off. Unfortunately, previously reliable water sources are becoming increasingly unreliable.
Fortunately, the shut-off valved for the hydrant leaked, so upon turning the red handle at the spigot I was able to get a dribbling flow, enough to fill a 20 oz bottle in about five minutes. It was all I needed.
From Lake Alpine to Pacific Grade Summit the road is 1.5 lanes wide. Traffic was occasional and patient.
I stopped at the summit sign to snap a bike photo before heading down into Hermit Valley. My brakes seemed to be working adequately, although after being used hard they continued a metallic rasping for some time afterward. (Later I noted that the outer edge of the inside face of the rotor (Shimano XTR) had eroded, and small metal shavings were caught at the caliper. The "self-adjusting" pads left the outer pad pressing hard against the rotor, creating considerable drag and wearing the brake pads down—after the tour I had less than half the original thickness remaining. Fortunately, I had extra battery energy to overcome this drag.)
I continued through Hermit Valley and started the final push toward Ebbetts Pass. But before I got far I came upon a one-way control established by Caltrans doing road repair. Once we were let through I continued in peace again until I arrived at the Pass.
A day-hiker offered to snap my photo next to the summit sign.
Then I started down toward Markleeville. Although I am somewhat familiar with the road I did not descend fast. Aside from not wishing to be taken by surprise by rocks or gravel on the road, other road traffic, animals, etc. I also wanted to stop for a photo if I thought it worthwhile.
As I descended the temperature rose again to over 90F, sitting at about 92F by the time I arrived at the Creekside Lodge in Markleeville, my lodging for the night.
The innkeeper wasn't in her office, so I went across the street to the Deli to order a late lunch, only to discover that they had just closed (at 1500 on weekdays, 1630 on weekends). So I went to the Wolf Creek Bar next door and spoke with the bartender who rang the innkeeper for me. Returning to the Lodge I met Jeannie who showed me my room and demonstrated how to open the windows and work the ceiling fan, since there was no air conditioning in the lodge.
After a minor struggle to get my bike through the door to my room, I was pleased to discover that the room had enough space for me to park my bike at the foot of the bed without blocking the passage between the door and the bathroom.
My first order of business was to start charging the batteries. I set up the charger to charge at a slow 4-amp rate that would take 15 hours to fully charge the batteries, which would work perfectly. The slow charge rate is easier on the batteries, especially when they're warm, and reduces the likelihood of blowing a fuse or circuit breaker in my room.
I could find no accessible power outlet in my room, but the bathroom outlet was easily found. I had brought my long power cord in case of just such a situation.
After a cool shower I relaxed for another hour and checked email, then went next door to the Wolf Creek Restaurant for an early dinner, a veggie burger with salad and breaded and deep-fried onion rings. The latter was a spur-of-the-moment indulgence. I felt like some salt and fat.
After dinner I walked across the street to look for some fresh fruit, but only lemons were available. I bought a Minute Maid orange juice for dessert.
Shortly after I returned to my room I heard a soft knock on my door. I opened it to see a gentleman who was also staying at the lodge standing upon the threshold. He had been told by Jeannie that another cyclist staying at the Lodge had arrived on a most unusual bike. He wanted to see my bike.
So I gave him a tour, and we talked a bit about riding in the area. Although I don't recall his name, he was from Chico and was accustomed to riding early in the morning then resting during the hottest hours of the day.
That evening after playing bridge against the computer for a half-hour I turned off my light at 2130, and aside from getting up in the night a few times to drink and pee, I slept as well as I can expect on my first night away from home until my alarm went off at 0600 the next morning.
|Bike Ridden:||Power Pursuit F3|
|Cumulative climbing:||8850 feet|
|Avg. Speed (moving):||17.2 mph|
|Max. Speed:||35.9 mph|
|Nominal System Voltage:||48|
|Battery energy capacity:||2800 wh|
|Battery energy consumed:||2206† wh|
|Battery Amps-Hour Used:||41.3|
|Regen Amps-Hour Recovered:||6.5|
|Peak Forward Current:||23.6 Amps|
|Peak Regen Current:||28.0 Amps|
Around the Bay, May 15, 2016 - My third and probably final long bike ride this spring is one that generated some interest after I rode it and blogged about it last year. A couple of friends had expressed interest in joining me, but one friend had bike problems, and the other was out of town. So, I ended up riding alone.
Since I had ridden the loop CW in 2015, I rode it CCW this year. Having ridden it in both directions, I find I don't have a preference. Each direction has its advantages and disadvantages.
Riding CW is perhaps slightly easier overall with less climbing, and "enjoys" the Petaluma River Bridge crossing, where there is no shoulder and poor pavement, in the faster downhill direction. Headwinds are a wash either way. In theory temperature extremes would be greater riding CW.
I started out under a heavy overcast with occasional blue patches. My trip across northern San Jose was on mostly empty roads, as was my ride north on Calaveras Road. As I ducked in and out of each ravine by the Calaveras Reservoir, I noticed damp patches on the road. The air smelled of ozone as is typical after a brief summer shower. Only a couple of motorcycles passed in my direction, and I saw only a few cyclists out at this early hour.
As I continued into Sunol and then north on Foothill Blvd. traffic thickened slightly. Most of the traffic appeared to be motorists driving their bikes to the trailhead for Pleasanton Ridge Regional Park.
Pressing north into Dublin and Pleasanton I encountered more cyclists and traffic, although the riding was still pleasant in spite of the multi-lane road in Dublin designed for high auto speeds.
In Danville the downtown area was asleep but for a couple of breakfast places with long queues of hungry diners. I started to see more groups of cyclist riding south and played leap-frog with a couple of cyclists riding north on Danville Blvd.
Although I haven't been regularly riding in the area since I lived in Berkeley in the mid-1990s I still know the main biking routes as if I were on autopilot. I had neglected to bring a map, but it turns out I didn't need one. After turning left on Hillgrade/Crest, then Tice Valley Blvd. and Olympic Blvd. I climbed up Pleasant Hill Rd. to Reliez Valley Road and headed up and down the sharp hill into Pleasant Hill and on into Martinez on Alhambra Valley and Alhambra Roads. It was all so familiar, except for the new subdivision under construction in what used to be a large field at Reliez Valley Road and Alhambra Valley Road.
The Carquinez Scenic Drive veers off the street grid at an oblique angle at the end of an old residential neighborhood in the hills immediately west of downtown Martinez, and somehow I "guessed" the correct turns to get there without backtracking. The autopilot was still working.
Since the Scenic Drive had been closed and the middle portion converted to a bike/hike trail, the county or state had apparently not budgeted to maintain the approach to the eastern trailhead. Pavement was rough and cracked. In one spot the road appeared to be sliding into the abyss with little other than a temporary patch job to fill the cracks.
The George Miller Trail is worth suffering the minor discomfort of the approach. I stopped at a few spots along the way to snap photos of the Benicia Bridge and of fellow cyclists, Rinne and Jeff, who had stopped to enjoy the view.
At the Trail's western terminus I continued on the Scenic Drive, passing quaint Port Costa, and arriving in Crockett, the last city on my tour through Contra Costa County.
The crossing of the Zampa Bridge went smoothly on the broad and uncrowded walkway. As I descended into Vallejo on Sonoma Blvd. I passed a group of riders wearing GPC jerseys riding in the opposite direction.
The last two years I had taken the Mare Island Causeway across the Napa River, but this year I looked for a way over the Napa River on CA37, as I had done in 1995 upon my first exploration of the area.
As in 1995 I continued north on Wilson Ave. past a row of well-kept houses and under CA37. But, when I got to the on-ramp for CA37 I was met with a "Bicycles Prohibited" sign. There was no such sign in 1995. I recalled then feeling a touch of vertigo on my upright bike riding the shoulder of the westbound side of this high bridge beside a railing that rose no higher than my waist.
I backtracked to the eastbound on-ramp to CA37 and noticed a sidewalk on the edge of the on-ramp. I looked over my shoulder up at the bridge and could see what looked like a walkway on the south side. Perhaps there still was a way across this bridge. There were no signs directing travelers, bicyclists or pedestrians, to proceed on this sidewalk, but I was game for a short exploratory adventure.
I started up the sidewalk that quickly became overgrown with weeds and ice plant nearly to the curb. But, it did lead to the walkway. The walkway was narrow and would not have allowed enough space for me to turn the bike around in-place if I had found the way blocked. Yet I continued.
The narrow walkway crossed the bridge, but its western end terminated without fanfare in the weeds, literally. But, it was clear I could press through the tall grass on a narrow use trail and gain the shoulder of the eastbound on-ramp from Railroad Ave. on Mare Island. After riding a couple hundred yards up this shoulder against the flow of traffic, I crossed the on-ramp and took the Walnut Ave. bridge over to the north side of CA37 where I could gain legal access to the westbound lanes.
Traffic was heavy westbound on CA37 where two lanes reduce to one. Motorists with nothing better to do while stopped in traffic but watch me ride my "banana bike" on the walkway earlier I now passed.
The shoulder shared the same style rumble strip with the eastbound CA152 in Merced County, but there was no asphalt lip at the fog line, and the area to the right of the rumble strip was mostly clean. I cruised at about 23-25 mph, not wanting to be passing stopped traffic at such a speed that would make an evasive maneuver difficult should some motorist decide suddenly to pull off the roadway in front of me. Wind was a left-quartering tailwind when auto traffic wasn't blocking it.
As CA37 veered toward the southwest west of Sears Point the winds became right-quartering headwinds. I reduced my speed to 20-21 mph so that I wasn't burning too much energy to fight the wind.
A traffic signal at Lakeville Highway serves to gate traffic into platoons to the west of the signal, providing the benefit of a window for slower bicycle traffic to cross the Petaluma River Bridge where there is no shoulder for about a quarter-mile. This crossing is especially difficult for a bicyclist because traveling westbound the road climbs 50-60 feet to the apex of the bridge.
As I approached the eastern foot of this bridge, I noticed a large gap in traffic behind me, so I applied full power to climb the bridge quickly. I regained the ample shoulder on the west side just as the lead vehicles in the next platoon arrived.
One more narrow bridge over Novato Creek remained between me and the rest of my Marin County segment, but this one was easy enough for me to get through without taking extraordinary measures.
At Hanna Ranch Road I exited CA37, then took the hidden bike path just past the railroad crossing onto Bel Marin Keys, and then across US101 to my lunch stop in the Pacheco Plaza.
After a relaxing luncheon I proceeded south on Marin County Bike Route 5, and then Route 28 that crosses Mission Pass between Terra Linda and Fairfax. The last time I went this way I remained on Route 5 through Marin County.
Instead of taking the tedious bike route and its many stop signs through San Anselmo, Ross, and Kentfield, I rode the right lane of Sir Francis Drake Blvd. that was moving at a speed I could match. I switched back to the bike route through Larkspur, Corte Madera, and Mill Valley as the southern section of the bike route has fewer stop signs, and Sir Francis Drake Blvd. becomes a less direct route south.
As I rode south I saw progressively more bicyclists. By the time I got to Sausalito, the roads and sidewalks were thick with tourists. Some on rental bikes had miscalculated their fitness for climbing the hills and were reduced to pushing their bikes.
I took the scenic way to the Golden Gate Bridge through Fort Baker, then climbed to the northern approach and rode across, struggling mightily to keep from being blown over as I rounded the southern tower where cross-winds are most treacherous.
The area around the south end of the bridge was most crowded, but as I continued south into the Presidio and the Outer Richmond, traffic became lighter.
On this trip I crossed over to Clement St. on 30th Ave. I was hoping to avoid an unnecessary climb past the Palace of the Legion of Honor, but my alternative did not feel any easier overall.
Organizers of the annual Bay to Breakers event were still cleaning up their finish line area. But, by this time the winds had picked up and were blowing strongly off the ocean, strong enough to blow sand onto the roadway and into the air. South of Sloat Blvd. enough sand was covering the road that traffic was jammed while trying to pass on the clearest piece of pavement. I pressed in with traffic and was glad I could keep my feet out to the side for stability while I used the motor to propel me forward through the sand drifts. A motorcyclist stopped beside the road appeared to be assessing damage to his bike after being blown over or losing control in the sand. I was happy to get through the area without mishap, and for the next 10 minutes I worked on washing/blowing sand out of my mouth, sinuses, eyes, and lap. The bike's fairing served as a welcome but incomplete shield from the sandblasting.
Temperatures had been comfortable in San Francisco, but as I rode south and climbed on Skyline Blvd. I rose into the fog. The winds remained strong, but the absence of sunshine dropped the temperature. The coldest part of my ride was through Pacifica to Hillsborough, where I finally broke out into the sun again.
Further south I found myself on roads I ride frequently. I took one of my usual routes home, arriving home about twelve and a half hours after I started, the ride taking longer than last week's due to the slower overall average speed and the greater portion of suburban riding with frequent traffic signals and traffic.
In spite of my slower average speed, I enjoyed this ride as much as the others, perhaps more as it included a greater variety of roads and neighborhoods around the Bay Area.
†Net consumption was (179.3 miles) * (10.4 wh/mi) = 1865 wh.
|Bike Ridden:||Power Pursuit F3|
|Cumulative climbing:||10390 feet|
|Avg. Speed (moving):||19.5 mph|
|Max. Speed:||39.4 mph|
|Nominal System Voltage:||48|
|Battery energy capacity:||2800 wh|
|Battery energy consumed:||2737† wh|
|Battery Amps-Hour Used:||52.7|
|Regen Amps-Hour Recovered:||9.3|
|Peak Forward Current:||23.7 Amps|
|Peak Regen Current:||29.9 Amps|
Mount Hamilton Big Loop South CCW, May 8, 2016 - The day before had seen rain and showers. While the weather forecast predicted little chance of precipitation along my route, the chance was not zero, and it was highest at the furthest points from home. As it turned out the furthest points from home were also the warmest and sunniest.
I descended the driveway cut in the curb and glided out onto the street under gloomy skies. My route took me south to Saratoga, as if I might be heading over to Santa Cruz or Boulder Creek. It felt strange for me to be starting a trip into the Central Valley by heading toward the coast. Traffic through the city was light but frequent enough to trip most of the traffic lights to red along my route, the lights set to trip "on [instant] demand", as in the instant someone on a cross street demands a green signal, the light turns red on the arterial.
As I worked my way southeast through Los Gatos, south San Jose, and on past the reservoirs, traffic did not increase. Aside from a few small bunches of motorcyclists, and a bicyclist here or there, I saw no one. Perhaps the overcast skies encouraged people to linger in bed longer than usual. The ride was quite peaceful all the way to the utmost end of Santa Teresa Blvd. and Castro Valley Road when I connected to US101 for a brief transfer to CA25. Even on CA25, traffic was light, although it came in dense bunches, four or five motorists, all but one tailgating the one in front.
I saw blue skies as I worked my way east on Shore Road, but the clouds closed in again as I started east on CA156 and CA152.
At the CA156/152 junction, bicyclists are directed to a path that bypasses the CA152 connector. I wouldn't have seen this path had it not been for the sign directing me to a patch of overgrowth beside the road. The path did not appear to see much use and even less maintenance.
CA152 itself was pleasant to ride upon. Traffic was light, and the shoulder was wide and clean. I cruised up Pacheco Creek Valley past Casa de Fruita at about 23 mph with the aid of a slight tail breeze. When the main climb to Pacheco Pass started I applied full power to keep the motor operating in its efficient zone.
I glided slowly over the broad pass and started down toward Santa Nella and the San Luis Reservoir.
Where Santa Clara County had maintained an excellent shoulder for biking, Merced County appears to have given it no thought whatsoever. Although the aerial view map shows no disappearing shoulder eastbound as occurs westbound, it does not reveal some important details. The right-most portion on smooth asphalt was littered with debris, mostly truck treads, rocks, gravel, and other broken auto parts. The center of the shoulder featured a 3-foot wide rumble strip, and the left-most and cleanest portion of the shoulder featured a sharp lip, a resurfacing of the travel lanes having stopped a few inches to the right of the white line.
For a while I rode on the rumble strip where the asphalt was cleaner. At higher speed the vibration was manageable. But, I finally gave up on that and moved abruptly into the traffic lane (after checking that it was clear, of course). Traffic was light, and everyone had space to move into the fast lane to pass me. Truckers, I noticed were especially courteous about moving over well in advance. It probably didn't hurt that I turned my rear light on full flash mode.
I did not make any special effort to maximize my energy recapture on this part and allowed the bike to coast up to the speed of natural regeneration, about 40 mph. I figured the sooner I got off this highway the better.
At the CA33 Santa Nella exit I pulled to the side and took a short break. The sun had made an appearance, and it was time to peel off a layer of clothing.
As I resumed my trip northbound on CA33, the poor biking accommodation continued. CA33 is a two-lane highway without shoulder. To make matters worse, the surface is broken and pot-holed, especially the right side of the lane.
Once I got north of Santa Nella road conditions improved. Traffic was less dense, and the road surface became smooth. That trend continued all the way to Patterson as I cruised 26-28 mph into a mild northeast quartering headwind.
As I gazed to the northwest toward the area through which I would be riding, I could see dark clouds hovering over the hills. Surely, the weather would be worst at the highest point on Mount Hamilton. I considered alternate plans should the weather deteriorate. The alternate routes were (a) to continue north on CA33 after Patterson and return through Tracy and Livermore as I had done the prior week, or (b) to ride to The Junction then return home through Livermore as I might on the usual Mount Hamilton Loop. I would in any case stop for lunch in Patterson, then check the weather report and assess conditions.
After lunch I decided to stick to the original plan, and leave open option (b). I didn't want to ride the same route I had a week earlier, and although it was cloudy in the hills, it was not raining in most spots. If the rain was only light or showery I might even press on.
As I climbed Del Puerto Canyon Road, the sun disappeared, but the temperature remained warm and muggy. Hardly a breath of air moved. Ground squirrels chirped, squealing warnings at my approach as they darted heedlessly across the road in front of me, so close I could not see them below the fairing. Traffic was light. Between Diablo Grande and Frank Raines Regional Park, only a few motorcyclists passed in my direction of travel.
Not much was happening at Frank Raines, either at the park itself or at the off-roaders campground. Most of the campers were packing up and preparing to leave. It was a quiet day in this corner of the countryside.
The Junction Cafe was open, although only a few customers were parked out front. As I had no need to stop I pressed on. A longer visit to check out the recent changes (new owner and remodeling) would have to wait for another time.
The cloud cover through San Antonio Valley and the terrain beyond made the riding pleasant if slightly muggy. I stopped for a longer break just past the summit on Seeboy Ridge where I could just see the lookout tower atop Copernicus Peak. I removed my earplugs and listened to the sounds of nature. Without a breath of air moving I could hear birds, insects, and other sounds clearly from all around.
One mockingbird was engaged in an elaborate routine, while finches chirped, jays scolded, and insects buzzed. Somewhere down the road ahead turkeys gobbled. The sound of tires scraping the rough asphalt could also be heard from a distance, and it was some time between when I could hear the approach of an automobile and when it passed my location.
After my short break I descended to Isabel Creek then began the last, longest, and most difficult climb of the day up the east side of Copernicus Peak. No view could be enjoyed at the summit surrounded by clouds, but conditions were dry if cool.
I got out of the bike at the post office and discovered that my kickstand mounting threads had stripped out. Fortunately, the kickstand had not fallen off the bike while I was in motion. And, I was happy not to suffer a flat tire or other mechanical on the entire ride that would have made repair difficult without a working kickstand.
I knew I had enough battery energy left to get me home without taking special care to maximize energy recapture on the descent, yet I decided to descend efficiently anyways. By keeping my descending speed around 20mph I reduce the potential energy that gets converted into heat due to air friction, converting it instead into battery energy, and I still make reasonable progress. At 20mph or less I can take my eyes off the road occasionally and look around. So, while it isn't as much of a thrill as descending fast, it is less stressful and more efficient.
At Alum Rock Avenue I continued home on one of my usual return routes, arriving home about 12 hours after I had started.
This year's ride I found less tiring than last year's in the opposite direction. I suspect I had more favorable winds this year than last with the cloud cover keeping the winds calm.
†Net consumption was (200.2 miles) * (11.3 wh/mi) = 2262 wh.
|Bike Ridden:||Power Pursuit F3|
|Cumulative climbing:||9550 feet|
|Avg. Speed (moving):||16.2 mph|
|Max. Speed:||38.8 mph|
|Nominal System Voltage:||48|
|Battery energy capacity:||2800 wh|
|Battery energy consumed:||2325 wh|
|Battery Amps-Hour Used:||43.6|
|Battery Amps-Hour Regenerated:||8.1|
|Peak Forward Current:||19.1 Amps|
|Peak Regen Current:||27.9 Amps|
|Motor energy to rear wheel:||1744 wh|
Mount Hamilton Big Loop North, May 1, 2016 - Weariness and a desire to get an extra hour of sleep had me leaving home about an hour later than I had originally planned. In spite of this I was still on-track to finish by dinner time, so I was not overly concerned.
I took the usual route across north San Jose to Mount Hamilton Road, then climbed to the summit. I did not see many cyclists out on this comfortable and crystal clear Sunday morning, but I did encounter Patrick Herlihy and Company on the final climb to the summit as they were on their way to Henry Coe's back door.
I stopped briefly at the summit before heading down the east side. I stopped again a short distance from the top to snap a panorama shot of the Sierras shining white through the clear air. Clouds were already forming over the Sierras, and the day would promise to bring violent weather later in the afternoon.
I rode with an eye toward conserving energy without going so slow that I risked being out past nightfall. On climbs my goal was to stay between 15 and 25 kph where my rear hub motor operated efficiently, and on long descents between 25 and 40 kph where I could maximize energy recapture. Where I had headwinds I kept the speed under 35 kph.
On the west side climb I stopped to debug an intermittent speedometer sensor. After resuming everything worked fine all the way into Patterson, but after lunch the speedometer reading was fixed at zero and no jiggling of wires or exercising of connectors would restore the readout.
On the long descent of Del Puerto Canyon, a steady breeze blew in my face. The downhill lessened the effect, and in a few places gravity was able to overcome the resistance and still allow me to move 30-35 kph without my adding additional power.
Aside from stopping for lunch, my goal in Patterson was to find a good charging location that I might use on a future ride. After relaxing at the local Togo's Sandwich shop I searched the 2-year-old strip mall for exterior outlets and found none. Not even in the nearby plaza were any to be found.
I then rode across the street to the Subway sandwich shop where I've stopped on prior visits and could not find any exterior outlets in its building. The only outlet I found was one unused outlet next to a Coke vending machine at the SaveMart, some distance from the Subway shop. It was near a small bike rack.
Once my quest for an outlet was complete I continued east on Sperry Ave. then started my northbound trip on CA33 to Tracy, a straight shot on glass-smooth asphalt with only a few forced stops.
Winds were blowing lightly from the east-southeast, not as strong as the usual northwest wind, but it made for a relatively quiet and efficient journey. Traffic was moderate between Patterson and Westley, but north of Westley traffic was sparse. All motorists but one passed leaving ample space.
When I got to Linne Road, I turned left and scooted across the southern side of Tracy to Corral Hollow Rd. Traffic was moderate as far as I-580 but thinned out after that.
On the final mile of the climb to the summit I went under a cumulus cloud that provided convenient shade for this otherwise hot, exposed climb.
The descent into Livermore went quickly, the usual wind blowing from the west absent. I stopped at the little league ball park at Concannon and South Livermore Ave. to add some water. Someone had conveniently left a spigot key on the spigot, saving me the trouble of filling a bladder from the drinking fountain.
I crossed Livermore on Concannon, then took Holmes and Vallecitos Roads to CA84 that I rode over Pigeon Pass. Again, winds were mild at most, although they were more often than not in my face at this point.
Calaveras Road took me south through Sunol Valley then around the folds of the back side of Mission Peak. The late afternoon, early evening light shined brightly on the west-facing slopes opposite the valley while leaving the east-facing slope in shadow.
After making the final plunge into Milpitas I rode my usual route home, closing the loop with my outbound route at Montague Expressway and Trade Zone Blvd.
|Bike Ridden:||Power Pursuit F3|
|Cumulative climbing:||4860 feet|
|Avg. Speed (moving):||29.5 mph|
|Max. Speed:||38.1 mph|
|Nominal System Voltage:||48|
|Battery energy capacity:||2000 wh|
|Battery energy consumed:||1974 wh|
|Battery Amps-Hour Used:||38.8|
|Battery Amps-Hour Regenerated:||0.8|
|Peak Forward Current:||25.3 Amps|
|Peak Regen Current:||22.3 Amps|
|Motor energy to rear wheel:||1480 wh|
Low-Key MegaMonster Enduro, February 6, 2016 - This year's MegaMonster Enduro promised to offer excellent weather, a promise that was kept.
I arrived in Paicines just before 0700 as the mists over Tres Pinos Creek were receding. Here I met Hui Chen and Sonia Plageman who had stepped forward to help out today, saving the 100-mile route, which would be too hard to support without their help. Between the 100-mile and 100-kilometer routes we had over 120 riders on the road.
I helped out at check-in, although Hui and Sonia did the bulk of the work. I was somewhat disappointed when I learned that for the first time in several years I would be the only e-biker to be on the road today.
After everyone had started, I lumbered over to the starting line. At the word, "Go!", I went.
This year for the first time I was running a direct-drive (DD) hub motor driven by an ASI BAC2000 Field Oriented Controller that informal testing had shown to offer increased efficiency over a typical trapezoidal-wave controller. I knew that the rolling course had no steep climbs and would be close to ideal for an efficient DD hub motor. Yet, I did not expect to challenge my personal best time that I had set the prior year.
I tried to take photos of everyone on the course, but a few issues conspired to make this difficult:
At the turnaround I stopped and chatted with Kevin for a few minutes, then ate a snack while I enjoyed the warmth of the sun and watched others scurry around quickly to replenish their supplies before commencing their return journeys.
On the inbound leg not far from the turnaround I came upon Tim Clark who waved and held up a wheel as I approached.
I considered waving back and gliding past at speed, but then I remembered that I wasn't out to set a personal best today. I had in any case spent too long at the turnaround to seriously consider that I still had a chance to do that. And, I recall that at various times in the past I had been stranded by the road for a number of hours awaiting rescue after I had exhausted my supply of patches and tubes, or after I had broken critical parts of my frame, rendering the bike un-rideable. So, I pulled over and stopped to see what was keeping him by the road.
Poor Tim had twice gone through a patch of goat head thorns that had put several punctures into two tubes. He was out of fresh tubes—I couldn't resupply him with those as my wheels are a different size. He also needed to borrow tire levers and a pump as he had consumed all of his two CO2 cartridges. I could help him with those, although I forgot to ask him what he did to render his tire levers unusable.
After struggling with several instant patches that failed to plug all of the leaks, we begged a patch kit and shortly after that a fresh tube off of another participant.
The fresh tube did the trick, and soon Tim was back on the road heading toward the turnaround. I resumed my ride northward, some 43 minutes after I had stopped.
I stopped briefly at Bitterwater, then continued on at a brisk pace, arriving in Paicines around 1400.
Other than stopping to help Tim and the good weather, the ride was unremarkable. But, later I discovered that had I not stopped to help Tim and had I spent half as long or less time at the turnaround I would have set a personal best.
Comparing the stats above with those of my ride one year ago when I was using my mid-drive, I can see that the efficiency of the DD hub motor driven by the ASI controller was about the same as that of the mid-drive motor driven by an Infineon controller over this rolling course of moderate grades. My average speed was slightly higher this year (29.5 mph vs 29.3 mph) but so was my net energy consumption rate (19.1 wh/mi vs. 18.8 wh/mi).
Overall it was a good day to be on the bike.
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