Sunday, March 13, 2011

Beautiful Stranger... Yet So Familiar

You know how it goes: Just when you thought you were over your Ex, she turns up wearing a sexy outfit. That's how I felt when I saw this creature in the neighbourhood! Though it wasn't my old bike, the beautiful stranger was not only of the same nationality, but had similar tastes in adornments.

Leather washer grips and a twined coffee cup holder. Not sure what that additional black bracket is on the handlebar - maybe for an extra battery-powered headlight. The Co-Habitant and I were debating whether this is a newer Pashley or one from a few years ago. He thinks it's older, because the frame is muddy and the saddle is well broken in. I think it's newer, because of that Sturmey Archer shifter (didn't these just come out in 2010?). Also, the tires were not the usual Schwalbe Marathon Plus, but something by Continental.

Close-up of the twined coffee cup holder. I've never seen one that integrates with the overall look of the bicycle more harmoniously! And I think the twine may also solve the loose fit/ rattling problem some of these cup holders are known to have.

Twined cable lock - just one of many locks that were keeping this Princess safe. I am ashamed to say that I never provided mine with this much security!

And the piece de resistance: a Carradician triumvirate, its olive magnificence catching the golden afternoon sunlight just so. The saddlebag is a Barley model, but I have never seen these Carradice panniers before.

The panniers are absolutely gorgeous and use what could be an Arkel mounting system. I wonder whether they are custom made (I know that Carradice will sometimes make bespoke items), or a new model I did not know about. Oh Beautiful Stranger, if only you could speak!

42 comments:

  1. Wow, those Carradice panniers are awesome! I've never seen them before either.

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  2. Actually, is it something like this: http://www.carradice.co.uk/index.php?page_id=product&under=range&product_id=64 ? Not cheap, though!

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  3. Nope. They are nothing like the Bike Bureau, but are narrow touring panniers. And the mounting system is different.

    But good to see that they seem to have changed their Bike Bureau design to the original with the leather straps!

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  4. Should have left a note! With your email, or the URL to your blog. :^)

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  5. As a rule I never have pen and paper when I need them! Even though I collect pens and have like over a hundred of them. But maybe she reads this blog and will send me a message yelling at me for photographing her bike : )

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  6. Nice find. Love that twined cup holder and those panniers. I swear these bikes must have a way of finding you, or haunting you, like an Ex would ;)

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  7. I wonder if you need to leave a message, it wouldn't surprise me if they are a reader.

    Spindizzy

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  8. SM - I think I've seen a total of 5 or 6 ladies' Pashleys in the Boston area since 2009. It's like they breed classic and vintage bikes here.

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  9. The first thought I had at first sight of the rear view of the bike/Carradice panniers is "That's a pack mule!" :() !

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  10. Could it possibly be the Carradice City Folder? It is under the Commuting & Folding tab rather than the Pannier tab.
    http://www.carradice.co.uk/index.php?page_id=product&under=type&product_id=17

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  11. That is indeed a beauty! Love it. Like SM's post too. Perfect.

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  12. Anon 10:11 - I think that one is only for Bromptons. But it's friggin gorgeous.

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  13. Whoa. Your Ex is looking good. But still, the breakup was for the best.

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  14. Anyone with a bike like that, with all the attention to detail, has to read your blog! I mean you are the Kwisatz Haderach (a Dune reference for the sci-fi inclined)of the classic bicycle over-world! I suspect you'll hear from them in due time:>)

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  15. I've never seen a men's Pashley, though I am sure Harris sells many of them. I wonder where they all go. Or maybe they are all like me and afraid to leave their bike anywhere. :)

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  16. Do people normally leave panniers on a bike when parked like that in your area? It's just that around here, people will mess with stuff left on a bike just to be jerks. Even not counting things i've had ripped off my bike (like the wires to a speedometer), a previous bike I owned had wire baskets and I'd often find garbage left in them. Basically, I'd be really afraid to leave such nice bags on a bike, even if they are cable locked to the bike like these seem to be.

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  17. rose - People will usually leave touring panniers on the bike (the kind attached with elaborate straps and not easy to remove), but will put a cable lock through them. The panniers on this bike had a cable lock connecting them to a main u-lock, though they were quick-release panniers. I guess the biggest worry in this case would be someone vandalising them as opposed to removing them.

    I rode with a Carradice saddlebag on my transportation bikes for nearly a year (later replaced with baskets/ panniers), did not lock it, and it was never broken into or damaged. Still, it very well could have happened.

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  18. LuckyChow99 - I watched the David Lynch movie maybe 12 years ago and all I remember is something about a mother talking her son into touching a very hot box...

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  19. rosecampion - I don't think it's too big of an issue here. There's a lot of bikes, and I think most thieves assume that if you leave something on your bike, it's nothing valuable. In the winter, I often leave frozen groceries in my baskets, and I haven't had a problem yet. People probably just think someone stuffed trash in them.

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  20. Rose - BTW, I can't comment on your blog because it requires a login!

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  21. Those panniers look oddly familiar. I've got quite a few different Carradice panniers and bags, including the Barley as shown on that bike. I am wondering if the other ones on back are the Carrradice 'Kendal' panniers, or a version of them.

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  22. I love those panniers. I would love to have something quick-release that is that nice looking. I run a cable through my Brooks panniers when I lock them up outside.

    Weirdly, in NY, I've seen more Pashley roadsters than loop frames.

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  23. I rather wonder what sort of commuting requires that many bags.

    I leave the Raleigh parked in Harvard Square from time to time with the Carradice still hooked in (contents are taken out in a separate bag before I walk off). It's usually fine, though a couple of times, I've come back to the back to find that someone's stuffed a candy wrapper or Dunkin Donuts bag in one of the side pockets.

    When I bought my Trek 520, I sold my old, trusty 730 hybrid to a friend, and so I'd see it from time to time whenever we were at the same bar or party. I'd run my hand along the top tube and the handlebars and kneel down to look at the drivetrain ... "how are you? happy? good! is he treating you well?" etc.

    a couple of years ago, he got himself a Redline 925 and gave the 720 to his girlfriend. Last year, she got into a small accident in Cambridgeport. Her injuries were thankfully minor, but the fork and downtube on the 720 was cracked. Nearly broke my heart.

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  24. cris - I imagine, frequent carrying of supplies. If someone works for a church as cycler said, it actually makes sense.

    Sorry to hear about your old bike : (

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  25. That handlebar light mount is for a B&M Ixon, possibly an IQ, which is a brilliant light in all respects according to this satisfied user.

    It has a very bright, square beam with a cutoff to prevent blinding other road users, good battery life, and can be plugged in like a cell phone to recharge. Love my IQ!

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  26. A friend alerted me to the intrigue surrounding Grace (my Pashley). I'm glad you enjoyed meeting her (even if the meeting was bittersweet) and the photos are really lovely! You caught her in very flattering light.

    To answer some of your questions, the panniers are the Carradice "Kendal" model. Broadway Bike procured the saddlebag for me, but suggested I order the panniers directly from the UK (which I did). Grace is my primary vehicle. The panniers carry whatever I need wherever I go.

    I replaced the shifter last fall with latest Sturmey Archer model. The original shifter, chiefly made of plastic, literally fell apart. The previous tires, cream colored Schwalbes, each developed cracks in the side walls. A pinch flat led to that discovery. I was near Ace Wheelworks when the flat happened, and the Continental tires were in stock in Grace's size. So far, they perform great.

    The twined coffee cup holder was a winter project. You are the first to notice it. Glad you like it.

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  27. This post reminded me to start looking for some new grips because I'm not a fan of the ones the bike came with. They are sufficient but they could certainly be more comfortable. I also found the porter rack to be useless once I raised the handlebars to a comfortable level because then the basket it came with was no longer sitting on it.

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  28. Gloria - Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting. The Kendal panniers look so different in olive and on your bike than they do on Carradice's website, I did not think it was the same model!

    Grace looks beautiful and the cup-holder is downright inspiring. Enjoy the spring!

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  29. It's usually fine, though a couple of times, I've come back to the back to find that someone's stuffed a candy wrapper or Dunkin Donuts bag in one of the side pockets.

    Someone can leave a Dunkin Donuts bag in my bike bag any day of the week, as long as it has donuts in it! Of course that would be pretty impressive, since there are no Dunkin Donuts in Portland (though there were a few here some years back.) Guess someone will have to leave me a Voodoo Doughnut in its place.

    My first Portland bike I sold to a former co-worker. It was pretty much a piece of junk that I used to death for five years, but it still had some sentimental value for me, as we had been through a lot. Not long after I sold it, he left it locked near his work (in one of Portland's few sketchy areas) for an extended part of time. I saw what was left--just a frame. They even managed to take the cables! Even though it was no longer mine, it was still sad seeing the sorry state it had become.

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  30. Gloria, you have a beautiful bike. What year is it? Being your primary vehicle, I guess you ride it through the Winter?

    I thought the shifter was replaced, it's interesting that the latest model is metal. The intermediate model between the old red plastic one and the one you have was a silver plastic one. My shifter is OK, but when it goes, I'll replace it with what you got.

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  31. MDI -- 2008 and almost year-round. For most of January and February 2011 I rode an old MTB with studded tires, while Grace enjoyed indoor spa treatments. Sadly, nobody makes studded tires in Grace's size!

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  32. Gloria said...
    "...Sadly, nobody makes studded tires in Grace's size!"


    Ah! Thanks, didn't know that.

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  33. It's much less awkward to see a velocipedic ex than a human one. Trust me, I know!

    I still recall seeing my old Colnago a few years after I sold it. The guy riding it stopped for a the traffic light on the street where I was living at the time. "Nice bike!," I called out to him.

    "Thanks."

    "You got it from Jocky, didn't you?"

    "How did you know that?"

    "He bought it from me!"

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  34. I just imagined having the same conversation about a human ex : )

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  35. This post strikes me as shockingly brand concious: Pashley, Sturmey, Carradice, Schwalbe, Conti...does the brand really matter that much???

    Just curious,as these brands stike me as not so interesting.

    But then again I am interested in some rather obscure stuff, at least int he west.

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  36. Um... and yet your user name contains a bicycle brand name? I don't understand.

    I used to own a Pashley Princess just like the one I spotted here with the exact same Carradice saddlebag, hence the relevance of both.

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  37. Let me rephrase: What is the attraction of THESE brands? I was curious of your view. They are clearly given great weight here, especially in the comments which seem to view the carradice with awe. Although I obviously know of them, I have never really given them a second thought as "a brand". Just as parts.

    But like I said, I like my own obscure stuff. You needn't publish this and could even delete my previous post.

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  38. Pigeon - It's no problem, I just honestly didn't understand what you meant. I like Carradice bags very much, because (1) the ones we have are of high quality and excellent design, (2) they have a classic look that matches nearly all of my bicycles, (3) they come in this nice olive colour that I find attractive, and (4) they are still hand made in the EU.

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  39. Velouria i have a question.....on your brooks grips, first of all....do they wear in like a brooks saddle does? today i got an aged B67, along with a set of aged grips.... now how do you get the leather grip ends to stay put? it seems like they would fall out? i have yet to put the grips on so i thought id ask if there was some "magic" to it.....i just dont want to loose those ends haha

    thanks!!

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  40. Bryman - I don't own these anymore, as over time I've come to prefer a narrower gripping surface and these are really large. I also don't really like the metal ends. But to answer your question, the washers have to be set close together in order not to move. Over time they loosen up and the grip should be unscrewed and re-tightened. I think I did this twice over the year I owned my Pashley.

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  41. i actually meant the small leather end plugs that face outward, that fit inside the metal ends they seem to want to pop out for me....

    here is what im talking about..its a pic from your blog of your pashley...

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_K3LsaGxYIZg/Sn94adQeeFI/AAAAAAAAAxQ/UY7F4rnBD9c/s1600-h/eustacia_brooksgrip.jpg

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  42. Bryman -- Grace (above) is my bike. If you look closely, you will see that the leather bar ends were replaced with sawed-off wine corks. A leather bar end popped out on a ride and was never again seen. The metal part is stable with periodic tightening as Velouria writes. The screws on the Brooks grips are washerless.

    My replacement corks are fine, but if I could recover the leather bar end, I would epoxy them with something crazy-strong.

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