Bike Punky (Season 3 Thread) (1 Viewer) Photos 

HitchBiker

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After the month on the Peninsula, I got dropped in Tacoma where I tuned up my bike and caught an Amtrak to Portland. As the ride between Tacoma and Astoria isn’t great, so I thought a cheap ticket was worth shaving a couple days off.
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My original plan was to ride to San Francisco and take an Amtrak back to Eugene where I had friends to crash with until September. The big wildfire down there took out a train bridge and added a lot of time to my trip. I ended up doing SF to LA again, then shipped my bike/ took a Greyhound. All in all an amazing adventure, where other than my debit card info getting stolen for a moment the whole trip didn’t encounter any troubles. Just smooth rolling for a couple months down the coast. Hell of a good way to have a break from the first couple waves of the pandemic.

Sucks to rush through two months of travels without captions and details, but most of my energy is put into Instagram/TikTok where you can see it all saved as highlights. Plus small video clips are usually the better stuff I have.
 
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HitchBiker

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Now in Eugene I’ve been using the time to refit my bike. Decided all in all, the seat pack bikepacking bag wasn’t for me And isn’t durable for full-time life on the road. REI accepted the return for a refund. Bike is now fitted with a rear rack again and someone watching the Lael Rides Alaska grant stuff I was a finalist for, sent me some killer specialized edition gravel ortliebs to help my adventures along (seen on the back in photo below).
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Plus I slapped a basket on the surly rack. Going to be heavier, but better fit for long-term stays. Also sold the bivy and decided to go back to a 1-person tent I can trust. Not sure what the future holds. Will likely go hobo up for some time on the Oregon coast where the sky lacks smoke and the temperature is cool. Amtrak isn’t running south until a week into September, so my back up plan is just to go to Slab City when that happens. I also met some other bike nomads who do weed trimming gigs up here I might tag along with for a bit. Living and working outside is pretty dependent on the fire season/ smoke here though. Hoping to get a work gig for a bit, but will settle on having a free to live winter. See y’all back out there soon!
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ali

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Wow, thank you so much for updating with your pics, they're awesome!

Firstly, i'm sorry you had some disappointing experiences meeting people from here. I used to hang with a lot of hippies when i was younger and although we were mostly aligned on general philosophies around environmentalism and temporary autonomous zones, i also found it disappointing that sometimes they had pretty conservative attitudes on sexuality and gender roles. I think it's really hard to find people who agree with you on a lot of issues. I have to admit i mostly gave up, and just accept people for whoever they are, even if their politics don't really mesh with mine. Perhaps that means i'm a sellout, but i just found it too exhausting to try debate people on stuff, or seek high and low for the vanishingly small number of folks who didn't hold some problematic views. Hell, some of my views are probably problematic too. My "trick" to deal with it nowadays is to avoid getting too close to people, so it's hard for anyone to really disappoint me. It's a bit of a lonely lifestyle, but it works for me at the moment.

That out of the way, i have questions!!

I was at a bike store the other day to pick up chain lube and was looking at the pedals. I saw those really skinny flat ones like you have - do you think it actually helps much? I thought it was weird that they had these little exposed screws. I only have one pair of shoes, they're my standard hiking shoes, will it totally bust up my soles if i try those flat pedals?

Also, all the stickers on your bike, are they easy to get off? Do you sell or give away the bike like that when you upgrade? I always avoid putting stickers on my stuff because i feel like if i kick it down to someone else they'll be annoyed i put stickers on it.

On the front-pannier setup you tried for a while... Does that help a lot for climbing? So far i have found that climbing on gravel "feels" easier than climbing on covered roads because the back wheel seems to dig in more, but i'm not sure if it's really because on gravel there's only one car going by every 20 minutes so it's easy to take up the whole road and have rests every time there is a switchback. I find the toughest climbs are on straight, sealed roads with lots of cars zooming past. I'm not sure if more weight on the front would make a difference, or just getting fitter is the main thing.

Thanks again for updating us all!
 

HitchBiker

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Wow, thank you so much for updating with your pics, they're awesome!

Firstly, i'm sorry you had some disappointing experiences meeting people from here. I used to hang with a lot of hippies when i was younger and although we were mostly aligned on general philosophies around environmentalism and temporary autonomous zones, i also found it disappointing that sometimes they had pretty conservative attitudes on sexuality and gender roles. I think it's really hard to find people who agree with you on a lot of issues. I have to admit i mostly gave up, and just accept people for whoever they are, even if their politics don't really mesh with mine. Perhaps that means i'm a sellout, but i just found it too exhausting to try debate people on stuff, or seek high and low for the vanishingly small number of folks who didn't hold some problematic views. Hell, some of my views are probably problematic too. My "trick" to deal with it nowadays is to avoid getting too close to people, so it's hard for anyone to really disappoint me. It's a bit of a lonely lifestyle, but it works for me at the moment.

That out of the way, i have questions!!

I was at a bike store the other day to pick up chain lube and was looking at the pedals. I saw those really skinny flat ones like you have - do you think it actually helps much? I thought it was weird that they had these little exposed screws. I only have one pair of shoes, they're my standard hiking shoes, will it totally bust up my soles if i try those flat pedals?

Also, all the stickers on your bike, are they easy to get off? Do you sell or give away the bike like that when you upgrade? I always avoid putting stickers on my stuff because i feel like if i kick it down to someone else they'll be annoyed i put stickers on it.

On the front-pannier setup you tried for a while... Does that help a lot for climbing? So far i have found that climbing on gravel "feels" easier than climbing on covered roads because the back wheel seems to dig in more, but i'm not sure if it's really because on gravel there's only one car going by every 20 minutes so it's easy to take up the whole road and have rests every time there is a switchback. I find the toughest climbs are on straight, sealed roads with lots of cars zooming past. I'm not sure if more weight on the front would make a difference, or just getting fitter is the main thing.

Thanks again for updating us all!
Yeah, I dunno. In travel or work mode I definitely put up with more from random strangers. It’s like being centrist is a rent to be paid or at least avoid conflict. Making friends I have a high standard, because I’ve been through enough crowds to know the type of person I’ll put up with. I waste zero time with bootlickers, racists, and transphobia.

The bigger the pedal, the more surface area there is for your foot so an isolated pressure injury is less likely. Usually the little bolts in the ones like mine are adjustable and/or removable depending on shoes. They’d probably mess up a pair of hiking shoes that aren’t solid rubber like cycling flats (thick rubber soles with circular grip like vans or 510s). I’d recommend Odyssey pedals with the plastic instead of metal bolts unless you get cycling shoes.

I sold my last bike with the stickers on it to someone who likes them for just as much as I paid for it 10k miles before. So that is debatable. Usually stickers will come right off a bike and then you can clean the residue off with goo gone or nail polish Remover. In some ways it actually protects the original paint job, because stickers get scratched before the paint does. That said, I’m sure there’s a variation on sticker quality and the adhesive effects on the paint. Personally I’m planning to ride my current bike until the frame cracks, then just transfer the parts to another touring quality frame. Unless something like it being easier to sell here and buy internationally happens, I don’t plan to get rid of what I have. So that gives me the freedom to really make it mine. Also the more unique a bike, the less likely a petty thief will target it when there’s other easier to blend in options.

I actually just started a YouTube/TikTok AMA, so might answer these questions there in more detail for others soon.
 

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