Jim’s cycling page

My bikes

I have two bikes at present, a Dawes “Mean Street” and a commuter I built around a Chas Roberts custom frame. The former is just an off the peg machine, apart from the normal changes to saddle, pedals and tyres. The latter is a little more unusual. It has a Sachs 7 speed hub gear and brake, and a Sturmey Archer hub brake at the front. I prefer it to the Dawes for all but the hilliest rides (or when I need to take my BOB trailer). Here are some pictures of it:

Update 2005

The above was written some time in 1999. Since then the Roberts bike has evolved towards my ideal commuting machine. I’ve replaced the front hub brake with a Sachs unit (the Sturmey-Archer was sticking, and filing down the brake shoe edges didn’t help), fitted straight bars and a higher stem, adjusted the gear ratios and fitted a chain case. It is remarkable how clean my chain remains now.

Technical advice

The best place to look for answers to cycling questions is Sheldon Brown‘s extensive website. Some time ago I wrote a small contribution to Andrew Henry’s bicycle lights FAQ (about preventing blown bulbs in dynamo systems). It’s no longer available from his original site, but you can get it here.