23 December 2010

Marianela Gets Fixed Up

When I rebuilt Marianela, I'd given her an ability she hadn't used--until the other day, when I fixed her up.

All right...If you know the story of Marianela, you know she wasn't fixed up.  But my old orange bike was. 

You see, her new wheels have a "flip-flop" hub in the rear.  Until the other day, I'd ridden her with a single freewheel.  But I decided that if I go through a period--as I just did--of not having time to ride save for my commutes and errands, I at least want to derive as much benefit and pleasure as possible from them.  So I gave  la pobre Nela a fixed gear.

I've only been able to ride it twice.  The drivetrain is surprisingly smooth, especially given the fact that it consists of low-cost parts. 

Of course, the only thing crazier and holding a greater potential for disfigurement and premature death than riding a fixie with no brake on the streets is riding one without some sort of foot retention.  So off came the rubber pedals and on went these:

Talk about back to the future:  These pedals are among the first made specifically for mountain biking.  They date to about 1985 or earlier.  Note that they have very wide platforms, which are great for foot support and comfort.  But they're also terrible for cornering and ground clearance, which is probably one reason why they haven't been made in more than twenty years. 

Also note a feature lacking in today's mountain bike pedals:  provisions for toe clips and straps.  The ones I installed are probably almost as old as the pedals themselves altough, unlike the pedals, they had never been used. 

So tell me:  How many bikes have you seen with those pedals--and Velo Orange fenders and "Milan" handlebars?  Or fixed gears with cyclocross/winter tires?

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