Monthly Archive for July, 2010

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Signs of Rain

The gathering clouds on Friday were a portent that the ride scheduled for Sunday would not materialize. At least I managed to get in a few km’s after work. Those Rubber Queens are still feeling draggy…

D = 11.91 km (7.40-miles), Vavr = 18.5 km/h (11.5-mph), Vmax = 36.4 km/h (22.6-mph), T = 38-minutes

Snow Peak Titanium 3-piece Utensil Set

SP_Ti_UtensilsI picked these up last year when I was picking up a Snow Peak Spork for Chris at the Snow Peak store in Japan. I personally strongly dislike sporks, so I got the SCT-001 three-piece utensil set instead. I see the utility of having utensils stashed in the EDC bag, since sometimes the krappy low-bidder PRC fork that comes with your Grace’s Inn chicken katsu plate lunch shatters into plastic shrapnel, the disposable spoon that comes with your convenience store ice cream is just not up to the task, or whoever picked up lunch at Yama’s Fish Market only got forks and your #3 plate has poi. I have in the year that I’ve owned this set used for exactly these things and then some. I have so far not used the knife. Continue reading ‘Snow Peak Titanium 3-piece Utensil Set’

Gross Travesty

Saw a white Land Cruiser 80 with crazy lift by the airport. I’ve actually seen this thing before out on the West side. I couldn’t really make out all the details since it was bouncing around like crazy, but the axle linkages and coil springs had all been removed, and leaf springs hacked in. The stock outboard shock mounting positions had been abandoned for dual inboard mounted shocks set at 45-degree angles, such that the top eyelets of the innermost shocks were almost adjacent to each other! This is of course because functionality aside, duals “look more cool”. NOT! I wouldn’t be surprised by the unnatural track if semi-floating GM axles had been swapped in instead of the stock full-floaters. Also wouldn’t be surprised if there was a carbureted GM V8 in this Frankenmobile instead of a proper, torquey Toyota sequential EFI inline. Remove the salient Land Cruiser features and hack in lame, inferior substitutions. Good job!


Benchmade 9CB Strap Cutter, Carabiner

9CB_cutterI’ve had a Bencmade Model 7 Rescue Cutter for many years. I went out and purchased it and attached it to my snowboard pack shoulder strap immediately after seeing some video footage of a kid slipping out of a chairlift and ending up suspended by his helmet strap. Being able to cut out of a situation like that one handed definitely seemed like a good idea, and not getting impaled by a sharp instrument when subsequently hitting the ground seemed like an even better idea (if you’ve seen Will Smith in I Am Legend, you know what I mean). Conceivably, one could toss a conventional knife after cutting loose, but the reality of the situation is that when you’re falling after being suspended by your pack straps or helmet straps, all intentions aside, you’re more likely to unconsciously clench your fist and hold onto the knife rather than ditch it when that falling sensation kicks in. Thusly, I chose a safety cutter. The Model 7 is a great tool, but it is not cheap, so when Dave at Power Edge told me a less expensive polymer version was coming out, I was intrigued. Continue reading ‘Benchmade 9CB Strap Cutter, Carabiner’

Rolling Resistance

The weather was overcast yesterday, but it wasn’t raining, so there was no excuse to get out and pedal around a bit. Chris called me just as I was getting the bike ready to roll, but there was still a lot of daylight left after our lengthy discussion of matters tactical. This was a good opportunity to evaluate the performance of the Conti Rubber Queens that I had just switched to. On the first outing at the Ditch, they felt slower, but this was offset by the better traction and ride. On the pavement, I could definitely feel the increase in rolling resistance from the size, weight, pattern, and compound differences between these and the Michelins they replaced. Climbing was hellaciously sluggish. At speed, they tended to want to stay in motion, but accelerating them up to speed was harder. Once at speed, there was a more noticeable gyroscopic effect in turns, where they resisted the steer into hard corners. There may also have been a little change in steering feel from the slight geometry change the larger diameter imparted, but I really doubt I can feel something that slight. They are still new with molding hairs all over, so I’ll give them more time to settle in before I make any judgments. Heck, from the computer data, they were faster than my last ride on Michelins!

D = 11.67 km (7.25-miles), Vavr = 19.5 km/h (12.1-mph), Vmax = 39.4 km/h (24.5-mph), T = 36-minutes

Driver’s Ed

Bonehead in red Mazda 3, I sure hope the driving instructor pointed
out that you were a prime example of how NOT to drive as you blasted
by on the RIGHT on two lane Diamond Head road around the driver ed
car. Wish the cop citing moped furthur up street saw that.


In The Spot

Monday, 05 July 2010

As predicted, the luck ran out, and the weather deteriorated over the long Independence Day weekend. The overnight rain on Sunday dissipated, leaving hot sun and blue clouds on Monday morning, but as ride time neared, the rain clouds slowly built, dumping localized downpours in random areas. Jeff, Sara, and the rest of the surf crew were off-island, and Ckucke and JT had other commitments, so that left Chris, Root and me. Driving out to Waimanalo, the Keolu area was socked in under an evil grey cloud. A light drizzle fell as I passed the stable. The trailhead was dry, but another evil could was on approach from the sea to the East. There was blue sky directly windward of the trail, so we lucked out and the rain missed us. Continue reading ‘In The Spot’

Auto Progress – AE86

P1010924So whats the status of the AE86 Corolla? I’ve actually been driving it, kidney bouncingly it every day. Here’s the story behind that. Last I mentioned the AE86, I believe it was running and autocrossing. Was having rear end traction issues, so it was in my plan to work on the suspension. Debating piecing together a cut and weld kind of arrangement, but found a complete coilover system just released from Stance. The rear is not really a coilover, but is still adjustable. That was ordered, along with a complete Prothane polyurethane bushing kit. Suspension was taken apart, old bushings removed, cleaned up, P1010900and repainted with POR-15. That POR-15 is tenacious stuff, even taking a torch to a piece we needed to extract a metal bushing from didn’t mess up that paint much. The rickety mystery Chine hydraulic press once again came into use. Got the job done, but it doesn’t instill much confidence! The bushing replacement was pretty straighforward and easy. Only the rear panhard presented some challange as it had metal bushing/sleeve that needed to be extracted, and one side had a wasp waist single piece bushing that required the press, liberal lubrication, and some worrisome looks at how much the bushing was squishing and squirming jamming it into place. Continue reading ‘Auto Progress – AE86’

Good Luck?

This has been a good week for riding. The weather was ugly this past Saturday, but Sunday was clear for our trail ride. Monday was raining heavily in central O’ahu, but it stayed clear on the East end for the afternoon St. Louis DH run, then Tuesday went to heck. It was nice enough on Wednesday for an afternoon ride, but Thursday morning was again socked in. Hopefully the weather will be nice over this upcoming long weekend, but we’ll see – I don’t know if our luck will hold.

When I got home on Wednesday, it was early enough for a ride, but the sky was on the heavier side of overcast, so I waffled a little. Chris encouraged me to go while talking on the keitai on the commute home, and the heat inside the house underscored the point. Better to be outside in the wind than sweltering indoors. There was some sun out at MCBH, but for the most part, except for a brief moment on the way home, the thickest cloud interposed itself between wherever I was and the sun. Figures.

D = 13.73 km (8.53-miles), Vavr = 17.5 km/h (10.9-mph), Vmax = 36.2 km/h (22.5-mph), T = 47-minutes