Friday, February 27, 2009

New Wheelset Day

There was a guy clearing his WH-R540 wheelset on togoparts a couple of days back. At just $60, the price was a definite steal. However, I only needed the front wheel for my fixie build. So I smsed the guy, asking whether I could take the front wheel only. He replied, "So how much should I charge you?". I said "$25". He then said "Ok", and then replied the meeting details in his following sms.

Like almost all my online forum dealings, this one took place at an MRT station. The guy came with the wheels loosely wrapped in a huge black thrash bag. I was expecting to see a single wheel inside when he pried open the thrash bag. Instead, I saw two wheels. I shrugged it off, and thought that he must have forgotten that I only requested for the front wheels.

I inspected the front wheel and gave him the thumbs-up. I was just about the hand him the cash when he took out the rear wheel and said, "Nah, you can take this too". I was taken aback. I told him that he couldn't be serious. Well he was. Of course, I tried to thread on the righteous path by telling him things like "But I have no need for the rear wheel" and "I only have money for the front wheel, it wouldn't be right", but deep inside I hoped that we wasn't going to change his mind. Thankfully he didn't, and I went home with one of the most awesome deals that I've ever experienced.

The old wheelset New front wheel Bike with new wheelset With just 16 spokes (compared to the 32 in the stock wheels), the new wheelset is much lighter than the stock. Ride quality is still the same though. All in all it just looks plain awesome.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Night Ride

My phone rang while I was toiling over a chuck of AIS notes for Monday's exam. It was Edwin. See, I'm not at all close with the guy, so the only two reason why he would call me was because of
A) Class gathering/BBQ/outing
B) Night Cycling
Obviously option A was out because the last one was some recent months away (not that I gave two hoots about anyway), so that pretty much leaves option B. I answered the call. Sure enough, it was night cycling.

So there I was, caught in a moral dilemma. I knew very well that I needed to clock in those study hours, but one half of me just wanted to give those AIS notes the finger and just clip-in onto my road bike and cycle the night away. After a few seconds of intense internal monolouges with my mind, I decided to go ahead with the ride. Of course, the deisre to see JC's new road bike also played a significant factor in my decision.

JC, Edwin and myself set off from Mac Tampines West at 2330. Edwin was on a BMC hardtail. I couldn't lay a finger on the exact model though. I was surprised that he could match JC and me on his huge-ass knobby tires. We first went to Changi Coast Road, entered ECP, then to Tanjong Rhu and had a pit-stop at the Indoor Stadium. We went to Orchard Road after that, where we were involved in some intense sprint-stop, messenger-style riding. Yes ladies and gentlemen, adrenaline increase your insanity factor.

I had a few close-calls; almost got T-boned by a taxi TWICE and had a brush with a jaywalking pedestrian. We made it out alive nonetheless. All that adrenaline made us hungry so we stopped at a beancurd store. Then, we headed home, via ECP. Awesome night!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Post-Exam Plans

27th February may be 9 days away, but that does not mean that I have not planned my post-exam activities. I've decided to forgo my job search and drown myself in running, cycling and gymming instead. It's going to be the perfect time to build up my running and cycling base, not to mention my 19-inch biceps program. Here's how it's going to be done:

4 sessions per week. 3 session @ 6km-8km, easy pace. 1 session @ 10-12km, super easy pace. Increment of 0.5km per session for every week thereafter. On even weeks, substitute one session for a tempo/interval.

2-3 sessions per week. 1-2 sessions @ 30-35km. 1 session @ 50-60km. All at mid to mid-high intensity. Reason being that cycling does not work the heart as much as running, hence the higher intensity to achieve the same BPM as running.

2 sessions per week. 50 minutes of upper body and 15 minutes of core. I think I've been going easy on myself in my gym workouts so far. It doesn't help that my regular poly gym buddy Wen Bao prefers to slack now that the NAPFA tests are over and done with. It doesn't matter. Still, I've yet to decide whether to go to SP's gym or the one in Bedok. Esther told me that SSC's off-peak gym membership is $50 for 6 months. I'm doubtful of the concreteness of that, but a 1 month train pass would cost me $45.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

LG KS360

I have always wanted a phone with a full QWERTY keyboard, but it seems that all these phones run on Windows Mobile. I hate Windows Mobile. The LG KS360 seems to be the only phone in the market right now that features a full QWERTY keyboard, without the clumsy Windows Mobile OS. Singtel did not cover this phone in any of their contract plans, so I had to get it from Mustaffa Centre. I'm still in the honeymooning stage with it, so any reviews from me now would be full of biased praise. I got a hang of QWERTY keyboard pretty quickly. It's a godsend if the bulk of your communication is via SMS. Plus, it's a fucking loud phone. The output volume from it's single speaker is deafening enough to turn heads in a peak hour train commute. The only downside so far is the lack of a 1/8' jack, which means that you can't use your favourite earbuds to listen to music stored in the phone.


Tuesday, February 03, 2009

I heart Road Bikes

The electric blue Merida is such a joy to ride. I finally got the fitting right. I couldn't believe that in the past, my saddle was way below the bars. No wonder pedaling felt extremely difficult, not to mention the toll it took on my knees. I used to hate going into the drops too. It felt really uncomfortable and my lower back would be very vocal in expressing its pain. Now I'm always itching to get into them.

I got the yellow Daccordi for free from a forum member. I did a couple of rides with and was impressed that it fit quite well, though I did have to lower the seatpost quite significantly. All was good and I was using it as my commuting bike to the bike. Then, the rear tube exploded. Apparently, the rear tire was so worned out that it revealed the inner tube. I was locking the rear brake and making the rear tire skid at that time. The skid must have caused the exposed inner tube to heat up from the friction. End result: Explosion.

Since the tires were tubular (glued to the rim), they would be more expensive to replace, not to mention extremely troublesome. So until I get that $310 Velocity deep V fixed/ss wheelset from T.R. Bikes, that sexy piece of yellow steel would have stay propped against my wall. Damn I have to get a job soon.

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