Friday, March 13, 2009

Foot and Butt Heaven | The Eagle Miracle

I did 15 very hilly miles today in the rolling stuff behind Stanford. Still no wall like ascents but a redo of some stuff I've been up before to make sure that my shoe discovery yesterday would really make a noticeable difference. And indeed wow, it did!! And then some. 

It almost feels like I am on a different bike. I mean now that I have my shoes syncing correctly with the pedals, I can ride with confidence instead of just trying to hang on. And in 1891, those guys really had it all figured out. The sprung steel tabs that fit snugly against my shoes now  keep my foot solidly in place. Not clipless solid but not at all bad either. 

Now when I climb out of the saddle, I can use my arms to jockey the bike from side to side as I climb. Whereas before, there was no way I could do any more than labor up and down with my legs trying to make sure the ball of the foot was where I was making proper contact with the pedals.

Today there was a lot more downhills to enjoy. And besides disciplining myself to run the mantra of asking for safety from God as I shot down the descents at speed, I also found myself blessing Matt Christy's flame. Every time I applied the brake I thought about the silver we flowed into the lever that had broken.  And like the legs over safety request I also asked God to keep his weld a solid  one.

I cut my ride a little short today because I knew I had a new seat to to put on the bike. And talk about involved. Jim Spillane, back in Connecticut, very patiently walked me through the steps needed to get it off the bike. And even though he warned me, I lost one of the pins that locked a bolt into place. He told me how to make a new one and I used a 3/8 piece of inner tire wire to make this happen.

What had looked like a simple nut and bolts replacement that might take half an hour ended up taking me a couple of hours worth of very tedious work.    Jim, knew exactly what sized wrenches and bolts and washers I would need, since he is the guy who modeled this so well after an 1891 Original Eagle that all the parts are fully interchangeable. 

A true work of art, the photo below is what it looks like now. While at the right, you can see the dead leather it replaced. I rode the new seat for about a mile today and wow, wow, wow. So comfy. I can't wait  for tomorrow's ride! With my feet happy, I look forward to yet another breakthrough with this amazing, amazing machine, rebuilt by an amazing  father and son engineer team. WoW!

There were a lot of  regular HiWheel bikes back in the day because the build was a petty straight forward case of bending and welding. However, this Eagle is a true engineering marvel that only the best could ever hope to replicate much less build. More and more it is becoming apparent to me why, even though this bike so major out performs

the HiWheel bike that most people know, we do not see more of them. They were and ARE hard to make!! 

Thx for sharing this journey with me!

THX 4 all of U!!   

Note: This ride is not about me but it is a celebration of all the people who have helped me get back to wholeness physically, emotionally, spiritually, and financially. This as I stand on the shoulders of giants to enjoy the privilege of riding this bike, the only Eagle in active use west of the Mississippi ...

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