Cannock Chase

Wonderful day at Cannock Chase on the Bank Holiday Monday May 27 2013. The Sunday before I did 35 miles on a round trip to the Holyhead Road near Cosford to Walsall and back home. Did 8 plus miles at Cannock Chase but it felt like it was 20 miles, rough terrain does make a difference.

Cannock Chase Blue Route

Cannock Chase Blue Route


The Ride To RAF Cosford

I aim to ride with Whitney to RAF Cosford. I have been advised that I should do so in stages, so sometime ago I rode to Pattingham Golf Club. Then on the second trip I only made it to the heart of Wolverhampton and had to retire – a double puncture that had me walking home. Well not so this morning.

Now don’t go believing everything Strava says, their algorithm is a bit off. Cyclemeter reports 35.87 miles in 2:15:15 hours. I know this isn’t Grand Tour time for 60km but I am an old man!

Whitney at the A464 Holyhead Rd sign 26/05/13

Whitney’s New Sensor

So Whitney (my beautiful B’Twin Triban 7) has had an upgrade. I got the Topeak Cadence and Speed Sensor yesterday and installed. First run this morning to work proved everything A-Ok. Max cadence: 94 rpm Avg: 53 rpm. Have no idea if these are good figures but it’s good to know that it’s working.



My New Road Bike

So here it is, my first road bike and off course it is from Decathlon. Its the new 2013 model B’twin Triban 7 April 28th 2013

B'twin Triban 7

B’twin Triban 7


Here are the road shoes I got from last year for a bargain!

Shamano R105







New pedals Keo Look Easy, had to change the Wellgo pedals that came with the bike – they were just too tight no matter how loose they where set. It became too dangerous to ride after causing a number of very near misses and a fall right at Decathlon door when I was proving that they were no good. I should had gotten a refund! The look so much better then the original pedals!


The decals from¬† I did ask for the roundel that Sir Wiggins has on his bike but they didn’t do it. Even so, this looks really good on Whitney and does well to announce to the world she is hot and on the road and is certainly my girl!



Replacement brake shoes and pads for Whitney – Clarks Multi-compound brake pads


Cycle Update 2013

Well its been almost two years now of cycling, guess that makes me a committed cyclist! I have changed or more likely merged over to road cycling. The Rockrider 8.0 has had a changed of tires in August 2012, the rear tire was almost smooth, the front has a good amount of wear let in it. These are the original tires that came with the bike. They are the mountain bike off-road 2.0 tires. Very good I must say. Well changed both. Using the Decathlon branded tires for on and off-road use – 1.75. With the same tubes too! I have done my fastest speed this week off the hill in Wednesbury –¬† 34.74 mph. I couldn’t get over 32 mph with the other tires. weight has change too. I have to get a road bike! I have clocked just under 3000 miles – 2925 miles to date. Took the car in for service and they tell me there are faint cracks in the rear tires due to the car been standing still too long! Now just think of that, you just can’t win!

Service new 1.75 tires

2012 service with new 1.75 Decathlon tires

I haven’t changed anything else on my trusty steed. I am thinking of a Churd mudguard. Haven’t gotten round to it yet. Guess I haven’t been messed up badly enough to get one. Although I came close last week when my mate and I went to Sandwell Valley. I am so angry with myself for not taking any pictures then. Its a beautiful place to cycle or ride a horse too – there was a lot of err cowboys ūüėČ there. Next time might just might get the mudguard, it has to be a Crud Race-Pac and white.


I actually got a new helmet. The Decathlon one was getting tatty and worn. So I got a Specialized Echelon II 2013 model. Its really cool and it maybe heavy according to some reviews but compared to my old one its really light. Oh it reflects light too, although I don’t know how that works.

My Specialize Echelon II

Love the work Team Sky has done in 2012. They have really put cycling in the forefront for the UK. Sir Bradly Wiggins and Lord Mark Cavendish (and he really should have been knighted too) are my undying heroes.

Cav and Wiggo

Cycle2Work Update

So its been a year, 2 months and some days. Rode right through the winter, spring and what summer is coming. I have lost almost 30kg! muscles all over the place. So far the I have had only two accidents with drivers and none fatal. I think the most interesting rides is along the Walsall canal, check out the narrow boat below:ImageI must say that Decathlon as made a very good bike of the Rockrider 8.0¬† I haven’t serviced it yet but will do so soon. Had some on going issues with the front mech and the chain falling off but a visit to the shop made it clear the chain and cables had stretched and need changing so that need to get done soon, A realignment fixed the problem in 30 minutes. Great bike!


Its been ages since my last update! Winter is here, hard drive prices gone right out the roof! Still riding, although I am worried about the car. The battery almost didn’t start the car the other morning – I only drive it three times a week now. I just can’t stop riding – I love the new body!!! At 83kg and loving it. So long dark nights are on us, hence the title lights.

I don’t work a lot so with a budget of no more than ¬£30 I am really shopping around for the best value. The Cateye brand got my hopes up. So I got the UNO 1 Opticube EL101. It has a single LED. The chap at the local bike shop said when asked to compare it with the EL135 – Its the one that will allow you to see, the other to be seen.

Cateye UNO 1 Opticube

I must say I am not happy with it at all! I would say its to be seen – certainly can’t use this to actally see that will without street lights.

Interested in bike lights see the following links:

British Cycling

London Cyclist


My SPD Setup

So after been busy riding to work these past months – chalking up over 700 mikes I might add, I have finally gotten my Shimano¬†pedals and shoes. It took a while but the wait was worth it. Got the PDM520¬†for ¬£19.99 (a saving of ¬£8!) and the MT32¬†for ¬£39.99. Really wanted the MT087¬†but really couldn’t justify ¬£75 on a pair of cycle shoes with parental¬†responsibilities!




So its been about two weeks now since the change. The bike rides better, I seem to have increased the speed without additional effort. The pedals do look awesome and gives the bike a very pro look.

First Bike Job

Now this was fun! My son and I had to patch his rear tire – with no prior knowledge! So making use of the iPhone app BikeDoctor, BikeTutor¬†video¬†and a few¬†YouTube videos we got the wheel off without breaking anything!!! My son’s bike is a Trax TFS.1D full suss. We both took turns applying our first patch. Turns out that there were two holes. Must note I wasn’t impressed with the quality of the tube or tire but for a ¬£120 what to expect?

Made use of the following tools:

  • Halfords¬†Large puncture Kit ¬£6 (Which I thought was better than what was offered at Decathlon)
  • Decathlon Multi-tool ¬£6
  • Decathlon Presta Bike Pump ¬£5
  • WD-40 – The bolts holding the rear wheel where rock hard to turn!

The wheel just before we took it off the frame.

First puncture

My son pumping up the tire after the patches.

Wheel Off