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Metro Boston: Good ride today?

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Metro Boston: Good ride today?

Old 08-19-16, 07:41 PM
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In a week with too much time spent in airplanes, hotels, and conference rooms, it was nice to get a little time on a bicycle, the customary 10-mile ride after work on the Minuteman.


On the outbound leg, encountered a young man (or male, anyhoo) riding slowly down the Minuteman on a bike much too small for him, raptly engaged with his smartphone, with a line of actual cyclists and a runner queued up to pass. He was certainly a pokey man, somewhat lacking in go.

rod
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Old 08-19-16, 08:15 PM
  #5527  
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I had today free so we rode the tandem out to Hutchins farm to pick up some veggies. Ended up with 42.8 miles. Not a bad day.
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Old 08-19-16, 09:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
Thanks @sbp for your, as usual, gracious reply. On that ride I rode 1A from Norwood on a Saturday at 6 AM. The riskiest segment IMO is from Norwood to Wrentham. On that Saturday was my first time on 1A south of Wampum Corner. Over the past couple years I have found very nice parallel routes though Walpole and Norfolk with good cycling anytime.

FYA, last year I offered some advice to a California tourist who came out to New England with a group going from Boston to the Cape and Islands via Concord and Providence:

The areas we have been discussing are at my southernmost limit, and I only got into Rhode Island (Cumberland) once, in 2014. I was very impressed with the riding, and I adopted this imposing statue below at Mt St Rita Health Center on Rte 121 as my Guardian Angel of the Road.
You also have a great memory and an ability to pull up nice photos.
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Old 08-19-16, 10:18 PM
  #5529  
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Speaking of compact cranks...anyone have experience twisting a chain so it slips and slips? Today we were riding along and my biking courage twisted his chain. First I tried a quick repair by using the front sprocket and my chain tool to bend his ultra chain back pretty much. It was better but still hopped so second try and solution was taking out a couple of links.

A woman stopped by to offer help. I'm guessing she was a cyclist and good at fixing a flat but when she saw the two of us leaning over the chain changed her offer to transportation. I declined her very kind offer because we were competent and prepared and were really hoping I wouldn't push the pin too far out of the fancy 2x10 chain. Repairs were made and we rode home just fine. The offending link was originally twisted about 30degrees.
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Old 08-20-16, 05:27 AM
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Originally Posted by sherbornpeddler View Post
Speaking of compact cranks...anyone have experience twisting a chain so it slips and slips?
Yep, but it wasn't a compact double and it didn't slip too badly. It happened on the tandem's triple. The FD had developed a habit of over-shifting every so often and one time the chain got so befuddle with the rings that it, well, got its shorts twisted. Okay, so only one link got twisted. (I have a picture around here somewhere but I can't put my hands on it right away.) We were able to continue but the fix was to remove the link when we got home. No fun in riding with a twisted link, is there?

The real culprit was the Simplex FD. It had been on the bike since I built it up. Even though it was designed for a triple with three parallelogram arms instead of two holding the cage, the body was still Delrin. As it wore out it became flexible. Instead of pushing the chain it would just deform. When the chain finally would move over to the next ring the deformation would be released when the pressure against the chain was released, and the chain would be pushed further. Shifting to the middle ring was a problem when downshifting, but shifting to either extreme ring could result in throwing the chain. The solution was one of the new Simplex triple FDs currently on the market. It works like a charm.
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Old 08-20-16, 07:42 AM
  #5531  
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Originally Posted by sherbornpeddler View Post
You also have a great memory and an ability to pull up nice photos.
Besides your witty, well-written and gracious comments, I also enjoy corresponding with you “entre nous” since we both ride the same region, and I like discussing mutual routes. I have rarely ridden Metrowest this year, and I usually ride the Minuteman Bikepath only about once a year.


In fact, often I ask acquaintances, and even virtual strangers where they live, with the statement, “I ride my bike all over, and I’ve likely ridden through your neighborhood.” That line often opens up a lively conversation.

My memories of bike rides attests to the intensity and enjoyment of cycling that gets imprinted into my mind. Posting about rides captures that, kind of like canning produce in the fall for future enjoyment during the winter. Just yesterday I posted to a cyclist on a cross country tour:

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
Epic (life epic) is a good word for a cross-country bike ride. Back in 1977 my long-term GF, now new wife and I rode our honeymoon from Los Angeles to Washington DC. It was the start of a new life and careers for us in Boston. Now on our anniversary of April 30, I start to recall, almost daily, where we were on the Road on that particular day, up to July 1.
Furthermore, as posted on my cycling biography,


Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
I happened serendipitously on Bike Forums in 2008, and it was frankly incredible to find a community that shared so many concerns I had kept to myself as a lone cyclist.

This enthusiasm has definitely increased my enjoyment of cycling. As far as improving it, what I have gotten directly from BF [include]:
  • the opportunity to post and literally "journal" my thoughts and activities about cycling and lifestyle (even if nobody else reads them), but which I wouldn't write down otherwise….
Anyways, as a follow-up to a post I wrote on Friday, August 5,

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
... In particular though, I’m going to an afternoon pig roast in Sherborn tomorrow, intending to ride my bike. What’s notable though, is that rain is forecast, and I never ride my pristine carbon fiber bike in the rain, nor do I ride my heavy beater mountain bike on a long(er) pleasant/training ride. However, tomorrow AM, I’m going to pick up my new aluminum road bike, that I just bought to be my rain beater from about March until December, when the studded tires go on the mountain bike.

It'll be just my luck that tomorrow will be a beautiful day, and I'll succumb to the lure of carbon fiber. ...
Well it just so happened that I was stuck in Norwood with the CF Road and heavy mountain bike that morning. With the near certain prediction of rain, I rode the MB via Dover Center,Farm Street, Forest and Goulding to Sherborn on a hot humid afternoon.


That ride, estimated at a little over an hour on CF, took about one-half hour longer with the heavy bike and hot weather. I ate well though did not “pig out” at the barbecue, and decided instead of riding back to Boston, I would ride to Needham and take the 4:08 PM Commuter Rail to Boston, with plenty of time for the Saturday Night soiree with my wife.

I left the party at about 3:15, with just enough time to get to Needham if by Carbon Fiber (via Rte 16 and Charles River St). However, by 4:00 on Charles River St I obviously would be late. In fact at about two miles from Needham, I had to pull off the road with presumably heat exhaustion, rest for about 20 minutes and ask some people for cold water, to plod on to Needham to get the 6:08 train. And it never rained that whole time.

Last week I did go to pick up the new, lighter and quality beater bike, but the seatpost was too short. I did take it with me though, along with the carbon fiber road bike to Michigan for a family visit, and though the weather was hot and humid there too, it was pleasant riding on the CF.

Finally, today I’m going to get the new seatpost, and that heavy MB will go into storage until it’s time for studded tires this December, and my only riding for three months this winter will be the minimal 14 mile commute to Norwood.

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 08-20-16 at 08:02 AM.
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Old 08-20-16, 05:48 PM
  #5532  
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87 miles round trip from Sunnyvale to South San Fransisco and back. Wow, they say that California is Gods country. If that's true than God must be a cyclist.
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Old 08-22-16, 07:44 PM
  #5533  
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Last week's business trip gave way to a weekend wasted by some nuisance ailment that I picked up traveling. Things got back to normal today, including a ride on the LHT after work, out on the Minuteman where crowds were passing crowds. A couple of talkative cyclists with non-standard social skills were chatting up all comers. Peepers Pond is turning into a mudflat; the peepers would like to register a complaint with the weather bureau.

rod
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Old 08-24-16, 05:48 AM
  #5534  
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Joined the throngs on the Minuteman Tuesday, everybody taking the delicious air of a benign Deep Summer evening. Took the Trucker DeLuxe and floated along on its big, puffy Compass Rat Trap Pass tires, pneumatic suspension like a hovercraft, without all those eels. Successfully avoided all collisions.


The low sun was playing in the leaves in a particularly pleasant way, here and there making a bow or thicket stand out vividly from the rest.


Peepers Pond is now a ring of mudflats with a little duckweed-covered pool in the middle. Perhaps suitable for a hog wallow. One of the many visible indices of the current drought.


Sprinted home with the sun at my back.


rod

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Old 08-25-16, 06:58 PM
  #5535  
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Took the LHT out on the Minuteman for another Summer's evening ride. The admonitory Burma Shave signs are back on the Lexington segment, labels on the edges of the Great Cyclic Graph of Mutual Complaint. Some time I'll have to draw that.

rod
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Old 08-27-16, 06:54 PM
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Lots of riding this week. I've been getting out to this picturesque and lavish looking town called Los Gatos. 26 mile round trip from Sunnyvale. I did that 4 nights this past week. Today I made it out to Daly City. Which was a 100.2 mile round trip. Sadly that's as close to San Fransisco as I'll get. I'll be packing the Smoothie up this coming Wednesday and shipping it home this Thursday. I'll be coming home on a red eye overnight Friday night. As awesome as the cycling is here I'm ready to come home.
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Old 08-28-16, 07:58 AM
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29-mile circuit through Arlington, Lexington, Bedford, Concord, and Lincoln, late Saturday afternoon.

Arlington: the blessings of goatscaping have come to the Minuteman, near Drake Village.


Bedford: a little Yankee self-reliance to clean up a damaged tree on the Reformatory Branch.


Bedford: parts of the trail have gotten so dry that dust/sand is more of an issue than mud. Could make for unexpected fun if you hit a deep patch at speed.


Bedford: that object receding into the distance is a motorcycle, broadening the definition of "bike path". Looked to me like the biker was using the Reformatory branch to connect several dirt-trail segments.


Concord: this segment of Reformatory Branch, with the greenery creeping in and the trail narrowing to near singletrack, is my favorite part the ride.


Concord: the Monster Trucker asked me to take its picture.


Concord: heavy equipment on the Reformatory Branch, work in progress with a detour during the week, but passable when I rode it.


Concord: apparent tornado damage on Lexington Road.


Concord: the Elm Brook meadow on Virginia Road was sitting pretty.


Lincoln: the N end of the Cambridge Reservoir was looking much worse than I expected. Somehow, that grass is particularly unnerving.


rod

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Old 08-29-16, 05:46 AM
  #5538  
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Out running errands all around town.
The cubanelles at the Union Square farmer's market were spectacular, so peppers and eggs sandwiches for dinner.

This happens so rarely, I have to post video:

And this happens rarely too (once a year or so). Another not all rainbows and sunshine moment. (Shadow NSFW.)

-mr. bill

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Old 08-29-16, 07:17 PM
  #5539  
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Sprinted up to Lexington Center and back on the Minuteman before dinner, the crowds thin enough to make that more or less practical, enjoying the speedy aspect of the Monster Trucker. My legs, heart, and brain needed the ride, none of them needed photos, so I rode right past several.

rod
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Old 09-02-16, 06:51 PM
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I had a day off so we took the tandem out for 42 miles today. Had no destination in mind but ended up stopping at our favorite organic veggie farm, Hutchins, in Concord, then went north into Carlisle before heading east back home.

Was it one of you who called out "Hi, Jim" on Pleasant St/Rt60 in Belmont about 10:30 this morning? I was too focused on the road surface and got too short a glance at whoever it was. Didn't recognize anyone.

A few pics from today's outing...

First, lunch! Of course my sweetie had to snap a pic of me eating and playing with my smarffone.



And we took this one, a non-selfie despite what it looks like. I propped the phone up on the picnic table and triggered the camera with my smartwatch. Pretty cool, eh?



When we arrived at Hutchins Farm someone else had ridden in by bike to pick up some veggies.



My pic posting is likely going downhill, alas. For many years I've used Paint Shop Pro X to resize them with minimal significant artifacts. A few days ago it just stopped working. End of the line. It wouldn't start up. Attempts to fix it from Windows Control Panel/Install would do nothing except eventually remove it entirely. Unfortunately I can't find my original disk to re-install it. I got my money's worth out of it designing a few CD covers (and we have another CD in the works) so I'm willing to buy a newer version. However the latest version Pro X9 wont run under WinXP. I don't want to upgrade the aging laptop so I have to find another computer. Gack.
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Old 09-02-16, 09:54 PM
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Mr Bill, I would of done the same. But a better me would have gotten the plate number and company name and reported his unsafe driving.

Glad your still keeping the rubber side down.
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Old 09-03-16, 02:44 PM
  #5542  
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Returned Friday afternoon from yet another adventure in air travel, this one featuring Thursday night spent catching a little sleep on a cot in Terminal D of the Charlotte airport after electrical storms caused two missed connections in succession.


By the time I got home, the work week was effectively over, so I took the Trucker DeLuxe out for a 20-mile ride on the Minuteman, rolling along on those big old low-pressure 52mm Compass Rat Trap tires and singing "How sweet to be a cloud, floating in the blue", mostly to myself. This proved to be an effective anodyne for the Frequent Flyer Blues.


I filled a couple of water bottles, but managed to leave them on the back step. The fountains at Depot Square, Lexington, Depot Park, Bedford, and adjacent to the Lexington Town Yard provided plenty of water when it was needed, relieving my personal drought.


rod

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Old 09-04-16, 12:12 PM
  #5543  
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41 sunny tranquil Sunday miles on my R3 today. It put me at 4002 for this year. It feels good to be back home and riding on my home field but I already miss the amazing California countryside. The Smoothie should be delivered this Tuesday.

As I was riding up 225 in Bedford I saw Jim Mulller. That was me smiling and waving!
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Old 09-04-16, 03:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Ghazmh View Post
41 sunny tranquil Sunday miles on my R3 today...

As I was riding up 225 in Bedford I saw Jim Mulller. That was me smiling and waving!
Ah! Boy, it sure was a beeaauutiful day for riding, wazznit? If I didn't wave back it was bec'uz I was focused on the road. The tandem demands much of my attention.

Sharon wanted to do a long ride today so I took us from Waltham to Chelmsford and back. Ended up with 56 miles, a very nice day.

The beach at Hart Pond in South Chelmsford:

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Old 09-05-16, 08:38 AM
  #5545  
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Originally Posted by randomgear View Post
Mr Bill, I would of done the same. But a better me would have gotten the plate number and company name and reported his unsafe driving.

Glad your still keeping the rubber side down.
You can clearly see the truck belongs to Katsiroubas Bros., I've seen their produce trucks on the roads all over NE and NY City, but have been fortunate to not ever to have had a run in with one.
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Old 09-05-16, 08:48 AM
  #5546  
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Originally Posted by rholland1951 View Post

Concord: heavy equipment on the Reformatory Branch, work in progress with a detour during the week, but passable when I rode it.
I really enjoy the Reformatory Branch detour through the swamp! I'd recommend it over the 'road works' any day and your 'tank' would surely enjoy it too

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Old 09-05-16, 11:56 AM
  #5547  
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I am looking for a suggestion of a ride that would put me in Wells state park(Sturbridge MA) as my destination starting in the Sutton area. I am looking for the roads to ride in that area that have less traffic. Can anyone give me some suggestions?
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Old 09-05-16, 07:34 PM
  #5548  
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Spent the better part of the afternoon wrenching, working through a maintenance backlog on both Surlys and the Rawland. That done, I took the Rawland out on a cool, breezy late-afternoon ride on the Minuteman, 15 miles, lots of energy in the air getting the birds excited, tweets and chirps at every turn.

Folks were out on the Minuteman, including this family taking their little dog for a ride.


For all the lively breezes and occasional gusts, there were only one or two raindrops blowing here and there to suggest relief from the drought, maybe later. The mud-to-duckweed ratio in Peepers Pond is rising fast. Cue Flanders and Swann.



Nice to ride the Rawland again, after three weeks off; the lively frame and low-trail fork handled responsively in the gusts.


rod

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Old 09-05-16, 08:37 PM
  #5549  
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Took a trip to one of The Town's underbellies.






-mr. bill
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Old 09-05-16, 09:04 PM
  #5550  
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Originally Posted by mr_bill View Post
Took a trip to one of The Town's underbellies.
-mr. bill
Yow! mr. bill, where was that? Beneath the Tobin Bridge?

rod

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