Thursday, January 4, 2007

Riding in the new year

In Madison, 2007 has started unseasonably warm, and I have commuted by bicycle through the Arb three days so far this week, for a total of almost 40 miles.
I'm riding my Litespeed, trying to figure out what I like about it and what I don't like so that when I order the new bike, it will be RIGHT.
For me, ordering a new Number One bike is an interesting proposition. Because I work for a Litespeed dealer, I can actually afford a custom titanium frame, but I'm taking the ordering process very slowly. For 23 years, I rode the same No. One bike and it was the machine against which all others were measured [and came up a little short]. It was built by an Olympic rider named David Brink. I finally had to retire it a little over a year ago. At that time, I got my present Litespeed, a 2001 Arenberg.
The Arenberg fits perfectly, which is half the battle, and the easy half at that. It is usually pretty easy for me to find a bike that fits, but very few have had the RIDE that I'm looking for.
The Brink not only fit perfectly, but had a ride quality that was perfect for me. I know some of the factors that mad it ride the way it did, and I hope I can translate those to a new bike with a new material.
Meanwhile, I hit different parts of my commute differently each ride. Some days, I charge the hills, others I spin low gears. As the time to order the new frame has gotten closer, I've been more aware of how the Arenberg handles, and what I want to change.
It will be a fun process, and I will be measuring and ordering in the next couple of days.
I'll keep posting.

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