Mid-Life Cycling

Mid-Life Cycling

09 June 2016

Vera Shows Off Her New Accessories

I didn't have to work.  So I slept later and my day got off to, shall we say, a more leisurely start than I'd originally planned.

So I didn't take as long or ambitious a bike ride as I might've.  Still, I managed to get in about 100 kilometers, on a bike I haven't ridden in a while:  Vera, my green Mercian mixte.



A sweet ride she is.  And she's had a slight makeover.

From the saddle forward, she hasn't changed.  It is below the saddle, and to the rear, where she sports a new look:



When Velo Orange had a sale, I decided to go for a constructeur rack and some of those beautiful Rustines elastic cords.   At first, I was skeptical of a rack that rests on the fenders.  But, as Chris at VO and others point out, the fender doesn't actually bear the weight.  Nor, for that matter, do the struts on racks that attach to the rear stays.  Rather, those struts--and the fender--act as stabilizers.  Rather, the load is borne by the rack itself, which is surprisingly strong.

It real benefit, though, is that it sits lower than other kinds of racks.  We all know that the lower the center of gravity, the more stable the bike is. And, on a bike with a load, stability translates into speed.



All right.  I'll admit it:  The real reason I went for the rack is the look.  It really seems right, I think, on a classic twin-stay mixte.  Plus, the rack matches the one on the front. 

Indulgent, perhaps.  But Vera doesn't seem to mind, and it didn't seem to make the bike faster or slower.  But I'm liking it, so far.

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