Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Review: Velo/Trike Brake lights

I have very bright lights on all my recumbents from Dinotte or Design Shine lighting.  But No brake light.
Ever since I received my older Sinner Mango Velomobile and then saw on the internet that the new Velos’ had a working brake light, I have wanted one.  Being in a 7 foot long, bright yellow torpedo on the highway isn’t to bad for visibility. But riding in traffic or in a group, having a source of my slowing down/or stopping intent, is better for everyone! Adding a brake light to my Velo would be too costly, time consuming and a bit out of my skill set.   Recently I came across 2 new add ons that work as braking indicators for any bike, The Lucid Brake and Q-Lite Multi. I ordered the Lucid brake before I knew about the Q-Lite Multi, so lets look first at Lucid Brake.
Lucid Brake.
        Lucid Brake naked
This light first came to my attention as a Kickstarter program.  Very bright and easy to use. It seems to be the first of its kind to use an accelerometer chip to detect the slowing motion. It uses a button type Velcro strip to attach to your bike , helmet etc..
You can check out their website video here to see how it works.
YouTube Video:
Short You tube of the Lucid Brake video working on my Velo:
I have attached it to my Mango Velo mobile and it seems to work well within its limitations. When you decelerate to a stop the light comes on.  After using it for a few days I realised that it did not recognise a gradual slowing down, as one would see on approaching a stop. just the final, quick deceleration.  Great for letting people behind you know that you’ve come to a stop but not the slowing down. I was content with at least that much indication over none. 
Powered by 2 – AA batteries -Rear light Costs between $60-80 US.  Available on Line
Q-Lite Multi
q lite multi  q lite multi brake switch
Terra Trike has brought in a line of Lights for their trike shops dealers to offer their clients. One of which is a rear combo brake /signal indicator. It comes in two parts that talk wirelessly to each other.The rear light itself and a control pod. The control pod has one lead on a wire that goes to a silicone encased switch that mounts on your brake lever. Then as you pull on the lever, your fingers press on the switch, the light comes on and stays on as you continue pulling on the lever. This indicates intent and that you are/have stopped.   
On the Pod its self are the left and right signal;  a flasher button and a button to have the light on continuously.  The main rear light can be used with the pod or it can be used as general rear light if the pod dies or gets lost.  Having signal lights when riding in a group or traffic is great. Once you hit a signal button it shuts itself off in 30 seconds. You would still be wise to use hand signals as people are not used to a bike with indicator light.  The best feature is the BRAKE light! As you show your intent to slow down and/or stop it gives the people behind you warning! YEA! Now that is more like it.  The Pod is a bit larger than what I'd like, but its okay. It comes with a couple of stretchy Velcro loops so you can mount it near you hand. I will probably use a couple of zip ties later once I finalize the placement and to make it seek a firmer, more permanent. 
YouTube Video:
Here is a brief video of the Multi  on My ICE Adventure Trike:
It’s powered by 2 – AA batteries -Rear light / 3032 Battery- Pod   Cost $90 usd  Available from Terra Trike or their Dealers
Lucid Brake: Easy to use and mount but I wish it was a bit more sensitive to also showing a gradual deceleration
Q – Lite Multi : Works great, the pod is a bit bulky
If you want some type of basic light, the technology with the Lucid brake is great. Put it on and it does its thing.
If you want more of a typical full function indicator,  then the Q-lite Multi is a great current option.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Slow GOIN” Day 6–30 days of Cycling

I was feeling a little tired this afternoon before my second ride of the day. I rode part of the way home after church today on the ICE Adventure HD RS.

 2014-04-06 15.16.10

All during my 11km ride this afternoon I was thinking I was just lagging, Then to cross the highway to get back into my subdivision I used the brake, “click”.  ARRG I was riding with the park brake on the whole time . No wonder I was slower than average. My legs feel it now! The last 2 km were a breeze! Zoom Zoom

2014-04-06 19.09.46

This Wednesday We meet at the Leduc Alliance Church to Start off our weekly Rides for the Season be there at 6:45 for a nice social ride, stop for a refreshment etc.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Ride Report: Wilton Park Hall

It was a great start to the 2014 season with 5 recumbent s making the cool but calm ride out west of Calmar. 3 ICE trikes Sprint X, Sprint, Adventure HD, a Tour Easy and a Mango Velomobile.

For the majority of the riders this was their first ride of the season so the pace was lower than mid summer. But we had a blast catching up on winter tales and future upgrades. Wouter had some shifting problems and my derailleur guide in the Mango unthreaded; but a simple reattach with a torx driver and we were on out way (I have to Loctite that darned screw this season!)  But I must say I do enjoy the warm, wind less, environment of a Velo: quick too! LOL

After wards we split some Delicious cinnamon buns Ryan brought from the Old Strathcona Market and some of Alice's Cherry muffins. mmmmmmmm. See you for our next ride!

Upcoming Rides:
Wednesday Nights
6:45 Leduc & Area Rambles
March 30 Weekend Ride – TO be determined - Want to host it? call me
April - Beaumont to Millwood's and return
MAY - Red Deer Bike Paths
         - Devon/Wilton Hall/ Calmar/ Devon Loop
June - Camrose MS TOUR
        - Idaho TOT Rally

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Fantastic Coroplast Velo Build

On Bentrider Rick OBrien has been chronicling his coroplast velo build. He is hoping to eventually sell a kit. Take a look here:

He just finished his first test ride and made a short video

Truly a Great Job!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Calmar Days Parade

We had a great day being involved with the Calmar Parade and Mega Garage Sale. 4 people rode Trikes and I rode my Velo during the parade. We had a booth setup for people to try out the trikes after the parade. During the afternoon Several people tried out the trikes and many came over to gawk at the velo. Most people around here have only seen me zipping up and down the hiway and were curious to see what makes it go!
Later in the day we had a visit from John who is interested in getting his own Velo. He commute over 25 km one way to work. Currently he rides a Cat Trike Expedition with a Bionix Electric Assist and is looking at getting a Strada to lengthen his commuting days and get some decent weather protection. Wouter and I tried it out his trike with assist at max. When the electric motor kicked in my first response was a startled Wo hoo! I can definitely see how an electric assist would be right for a longer commute. It's a blast!

It was a fun day getting exposure for the Sinner Mango & Trikes

Saturday, June 8, 2013

T'was a goot day fer a ride! Ya!

After a somewhat damp week and feeling a bit of a want for a few miles under my tires Wouter called up Friday and asked if I was busy on Saturday. I promptly replied “yep going for a ride!”  He replied “I thought so, lets do it.” So after 1:00 pm, after my shift at the shop Wouter called and said he had a hankering to meander around Millet. So remembering the route Godspoke took when John and Teresa escorted us around a few years back, we headed out to Millet. millet ride june 13
KML Link

We had a great afternoon wandering around the acreages along nice paved and quiet roads. Stopping here and there enjoying the sights, the nicely groomed yards, a few horses, you know.

Then we did mighty battle against the onerous wind gods on the return. After a mighty and prolonged battle we over came the Furies of the Howling Gusts and did retrieve the standard that was plucked from our midst unawares midway of our trek. T'was unknown to us of the Wily Siroccos vile trickery until the real battle was upon us!  (*for explanation see end of post) But we over came and were Victorious in our Quest! ( cheers and reverie noises from the crowds reading )

I do enjoy riding a lot, but I enjoy riding even more when I am with others who are just riding for the scenery, camaraderie and potential adventure! We had the luxury of knowing our route, well mostly, today. But sometimes its even more fun to head down a road and turn just to see where it takes you.
When was the last time you just went out in the country for an adventure ride?  Want to go for a ride? Call up one or more from the group and see who shows up. Sometimes those are the the most memorable. If you want to be on the spontaneous adventure ride list leave a comment; who knows what may lie ahead…..

(*it was a bit windy on our return and  Wouter had lost his new Renu Cycle flag at the railway tracks but we found it on our way back, hooray! The other description sounds more "adventurous" :) )

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Joined the Gang in `Da Hood`!!

Today I received my Sinner Tour Cap, aka: “Da Hood!” from Ray at Bluevelo
2013-05-21 21.54.51
Tonight I went on a 12km test ride. OMG! I am a believer! on a short 2% stretch outside of town the best I’ve ever done down was 45kph at the end of the season when I was conditioned. Tonight at the beginning of the season I hit 50 kph!!! Actually it was the first time I ever hit 50 while pedaling the velo on a relatively flattish road. I am excited to see what I can do as I get fitter.

2013-05-21 22.00.31
Okay maybe losing 45 lbs this winter helped too, but I did this stretch only two weeks ago! Zoom Zoom....

Save your pennies boys and girls, it really is worth it.

On the side of the tour cap it says: Sinner!
        But I’ve been Redeemed! (honest Officer!)
Havin Fun and lovin my Velo
Larry P.S. Thanks Harry for a Great innovation (looking forward to the new holey seat ;) and Ray for prompt delivery!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Red Deer Ramble Report

Friday, Wouter and headed down to Red Deer with the ICE Trikes, Adventure and Sprint, to deliver a large hard-shell seat for my friend Cornells’ ICE QNT. after the usual BS ing we rode the river valley trail system for the day.


It was a great ride.the pathway was paved and fairly quiet of of other riders and pedestrians. In the morning it was cool and when we rode through tree cover it was chilly but by the we stopped for coffee it had warmed up and turned out quite pleasant for the remainder off the ride.

Riding with Cornell and Wouter is always a lot of fun as these two Dutch guys have a lot of anecdotes to share along the way. Just over 3/4 through the ride we found a nice coffee shop and picked up a latte then rode over to a park and sat on the trikes soaking up the sun and chatting. It sure is nice to have a comfy seat where ever you you find a nice spot to stop!


If you ever get a chance to ride in Red Deer go for it its a very pleasant day ride.  When we finished the ride Cornell had to get back to Cochrane (2 hours away) so after lingering around a bit he left, then Wouter and I headed for supper at the Bistro (formerly Applebee's ) then went on the hunt for some licorice in the shopping center. Didn’t find “Dutch” licorice but found some and then we headed back up to Leduc (just over 1 hour) .

Over all it was a great inaugural ride for an annual recumbent rendezvous!

We hope to get together again this year to ride parts of the new trail from Cochrane to Calgary and the Legacy Trail from Lake Louis to Calgary. And to get a run on our Velos! If you want to come stay tuned for details. Next is the annual migration to Kellogg at the end of June of course.