Geddit? Snow business. There’s a pun I’ll never get sick of. Or, indeed, hear anyone laugh at. Despite my constant griping about snow on the pages of this blog, we’ve actually had a warmer start to winter than we did last year and the snow we’ve had has melted but I think we’re finally into winter proper, as evidenced in this Tale of Two Cities screen capture from my igoogle page:

Today’s snow makes a nice change from the wind and rain we’ve been getting lately and also gave me a chance to try out my latest cunning plan. I’ve been on the indoor trainer a bit lately. I wouldn’t mind doing some riding in the snow but snow tyres are at least 10,000 yen each and Bic Camera only seemed to have 26-inch ones anyway. However, while browsing the internet, I stumbled on to a crazy idea which just might work. Why waste expensive money on snow tyres when simple cable ties can do the same trick?

On the way home from work one day I stuck my nose in to the 100 yen shop (which, if they were being honest, should really be called the 105 yen including sales tax shop) and splashed out 210 yen on two packets of their finest cable ties.

On seeing the snow this morning, I put the plan into effect and spent a good 20 minutes putting cable ties on to the wheels of my pista. It looked liked this:

There's an inherent design flaw here. Have you spotted it yet?

Yes, I thought ‘these cable ties are going to give my brake pads a hard time’. I was a bit wrong about that.

I was also keen to go for a ride because I have inherited a little action camera from Mr Kon and I was keen to see how it would go. It came with a wrist strap rather than a bicycle mount so I thought there might be some trouble with it moving backwards and forwards but one must make do with what one has.

Here's the camera, all mounted up.

And here's the back section of the bike. I also changed to mountain bike pedals because road cleats get bogged with snow very quickly.

I decided to have a test ride just up to the end of the university and back. The first thing that happened as I left our apartments was I applied the front brake and promptly stripped all the cable ties. Maybe it’s time to flip the back wheel and ride fixed so I can do all my braking through the back wheel. When I got home I checked the website that I got the idea from and noticed that that bloke’s bike circumvented the problem by having disk brakes.

The next thing I did was ride through a red light at a pedestrian crossing – don’t worry, the street was empty in both directions – and promptly discovered that turning is not so easy without traction on the front tyre. I was having quite a giggle by this point but the man standing at the corner was still kind enough to ask if I was okay and advise me to be careful.

After a few hundred metres on the footpath, I worked up the courage to ride on the road and found the flat surface was much easier. It’s all relative, though. After I turned at the traffic lights near the university I heard a noise to my right and saw that one car had managed to run into the back of another at low speed.

I cruised up to the other end of the university and back and didn’t crash again until I ran over a plastic pipe which was lying on the ground but hidden under snow. Then when I got home, I made it all up into the following video clip including a song by Nina Simone which may annoy you because it has been in quite a few commercials, so sorry about that.

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10 Comment on “Snow Business

  1. Pingback: Night riders | ridefixies

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