March 28, 2014

Bike Me!

Today after work I picked up my newest addition to the stable. An Electra Townie Beach Cruiser. It's been years that I actually rode a pedal bike. I am not a cyclist per se, I admit to being lazy, and rather prefer my bikes motorised. I am practically a neophyte, that's why I chose a simple model, and I also really liked the retro look of it.
The Beach Cruiser is almost like riding a Harley, sans the noise. The seating position is laid back and comfortable. The fat white wall tires do not only to please the eye and add to the vintage character but also make for a comfy ride on gravel.
It is certainly not a bike to climb the mountains with, but I am not aspiring to do so. That's what motors were invented for, right? But it seems to have quite the potential to become an awesome commuter bike. The twelve mile ride home turned out to be a piece of cake.
I thought about getting one of those other cool looking 3 speed bikes, but on my way home I very quickly got to appreciate the Shimano 8 speed internal hub, that comes with the Townie 8i, because the valley wasn't as even as I thought it would be.
A very smooth and quick gear shifting without any slippage. I have had so much worse on that last commuter bicycle I owned fifteen years ago.
The cruiser style handlebar with the leather grips is so easy to my wrists, and I really like the upright seating position.
I was riding well into dawn but the standard issue lamps fed by the hub generator provided enough light to see and to be seen.
The only downside are brain buckets. I hate them! They ain't pretty, and they ain't cool, but I wear one anyway. Believe it or not, in Germany we do not have a legal obligation to wear bicycle helmet, however, common sense leads to protecting your noggin, and most cyclists in this country use a helmet, even though it looks, well... dorky.

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Ein neues Zweirad!
Heute nach der Arbeit habe ich mein neues Bike abgeholt. Eigentlich bin ich viel zu faul, um überhaupt ein Fahrrad zu bewegen und fühlte mich nach all der Zeit wie ein Anfänger. Es war schon Jahre her, dass ich überhaupt Fahrrad gefahren bin, und ich weiß, dass ich kein Rennradler bin, also habe ich mich für eines im Retro-Look entschieden. Das Bike lässt sich genau so sicher wie eine Harley bewegen. Die fetten Ballonreifen unterstreichen nicht nur den klassischen Charakter, sondern sorgen auch bei unebener Strecke und Schotterwegen für einen sanften Ritt. Ich hätte zwar lieber den noch cooleren Drei-Gang-Cruiser genommen, aber bin sehr schnell froh gewesen, mich für das Modell mit der Acht-Gang-Shimano Schaltung entschieden zu haben, denn das Tal ist nicht so flach, wie es scheint. Die Sitzposition ist erwartungsgemäß bequem und relaxt, nicht wie bei typischen Touren- oder Rennrädern oder etwa Mountain Bikes. Der Cruiser Lenker sorgt für entspannte Handgelenke, während man aufrecht sitzt. Klar, dass man damit keine Berge erklimmen kann, doch wer will dass schon, dafür wurden ja schließlich Motoren erfunden. Aber für den gemütlichen Ausritt durch das Tal oder für den Weg zur Arbeit ist das Bike perfekt. Auch wenn es nicht gesetzlich vorgeschrieben ist, habe ich mich dafür entschieden, einen Fahrradhelm zu tragen. Sieht zwar bescheiden aus, aber erfüllt seinen Zweck.

15 comments:

  1. What a charming bike! Good for you. And the helmet does not look "dorky" at all.

    I'm having a hard time grasping your verdant landscape. I feel like I'm in some sort of time warp. Truly.

    Starting to see some motorcycles out here, a few scooters, too. Bicycles are always rolling around here, but there are more now since we are above 0...

    I'm really pleased for you (wish I could join you) and look forward to more photos.

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    1. Thanks, Martha. The new ride will give me the opportunity to discover things that I would have passed by on a scooter or motorcycle. I am quite curious myself, plus I like the fitness aspect that comes with it.

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  2. To me a brown helmet comes from the "You are going to have fun if it kills you school of thought". What about a nice zippy pink?" I think the contrast could go great with your frame and the white tires.Of course I'm a guy so what do I know?????

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    1. David, I am not really a pink person, but an orange would have been nice, alas no such luck. I have a very small head, and selections were few. This model was one of two that had fit me, and the other was of a beige colour.

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  3. Replies
    1. Get her one. It's fun!

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    2. Sounds like a plan. And what can go wrong with a brand named Electra?

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  4. Cooooooool! Cool wie Sonja :)

    Und bescheiden sieht immer noch der aus, der keinen Helm trägt.

    Ich bin übrigens gerade an einem XH-1 Tretroller dran, die letzte Entscheidung dafür ist aber noch nicht gefallen.

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    1. Den musste ich doch erst mal googlen. Der ist ja ein Hammer. Wusste gar nicht, dass es so etwas gibt.

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  5. now time for a brown wicker basket on the front? one must farkle you know! :)

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    1. Dom, things are in the make, but first things first. I bought a bell today...

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  6. I have had an Electra townie cruiser bike for 7 years, love it!

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  7. Cute bike Sonja. I have an Electra as well but it is only 3 speed which makes me realize how much you must appreciate the 8 speeds. 3 isn't really enough when you have hills.

    You definitely need the basket so you can ride to the farmers markets and get your weekend goodies.

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  8. How did I miss this post? Love the bike, so cool!

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