Thursday, November 19, 2015

Bike Train

Riding the train rules pretty hard. I would take it all the time if it was available. Some day I bet we'll all switch over to bicycles and trains and stuff.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

B-Cycles get a B-

Wife and I road some B-Cycles the other day. I was down to try bike sharing out. Simplicity-wise, it's an okay process. Requiring that your phone receive an unlock code is pretty annoying. My phone didn't always have great reception at each B-Cycle station. I also wondered about why certain bikes in a given station weren't available for checkout. Was it because they were due for maintenance? Kind of odd.

The ride itself was so-so. The drive train was pretty squeaky on all of the bikes. I don't know if they have a lubing schedule in place, but they should definitely consider something like that. Or maybe develop an automatic lubing technology either on the bike or on the docking station. Their choice of plastic was also questionable, as you could clearly see fading, cracking, and missing pieces on some of the bikes. Certain bikes didn't have functioning bells for this reason; the plastic lever had snapped off! It's the goddamn midwest. Shit's gonna get brittle when it's freezing out! C'mon, Trek!

The bikes are definitely heavy. Why they insisted upon a classic 700c wheel size is weird. They just become these huge lumbering things. Heavy ass wheels could be made lighter but stronger if they just made the diameter something like 20" or so. Like a folding bike! Smaller tires would be cheaper, as well!

The seats were also a bit too comfort oriented. My legs were impeded from pedaling and kept rubbing on the sides. I think you could do a bit of redesign and still get something comfortable. Additionally, the seat angle was off a bit on most of the bikes, either causing you to slide forward or backward.

Lastly, for such lumbering bikes, they were very nervous and twitchy. Perhaps it's because the rack up front is so heavy, and is attached to the handlebars. The bikes definitely wanted to wander and dart around. I would suggest mounting the rack on the headtube or frame, somehow. Or just decrease the head tube angle by a handful of degrees! Easy!

So yeah...B-Cycles get a B-. Maybe a C+ for effort, because it seems like a lot of this shit was simply ignored.