Sunday, June 03, 2012

Mini-Vacation Time

My attendance at "Reveal The Path" was followed by an extended weekend stay with Ben Witt up in Northfield, Minnesota. Obviously, being that it was Friday, Ben and his wife were working, so Mrs. Guitar Ted and I hung out for the day.

Shopping in Northfield
Now Mrs. Guitar Ted is a book nut, kinda like I am a bike nut. Used book stores are like a magnet for her. Northfield actually has a nice one called Monkey See- Monkey Read. Oddly enough, I happen to know the proprietor of the establishment, Jerry, who himself is a bike nut.

Weird, huh?

Well, it gets weirder, in a good way. See, Jerry got involved in selling the  AfricaBike , which are made and distributed by Kona and involves a project to help Africans with bicycles. Jerry had sold several of these over the past few years from his used book store, but only had two left. He is getting to the point where he is going to end his involvement with the selling of bicycles out of a bookstore, so these two bikes had attractive pricing on them as well.

Okay, so the other part of this story is that Mrs. Guitar Ted has always, always wanted a Kona Bike. Didn't matter to her what type of bike, as long as it was a Kona. (I have no idea why Kona. It is what it is, as far as I know!)

Mrs. Guitar Ted on her Kona

Well, Jerry and I get to talking and next thing ya know, we're leaving with a Kona AfricaBike for Mrs. Guitar Ted.

It's pretty cool. Single speed, bolt on hubs, coaster rear with linear pull front brakes, integrated rear rack, a front basket, and of course, it is steel. Oddly enough, the flat black paint job is my wife's second favorite color for a bike as well.

The integrated rear rack has a  four bolt pattern of braze ons that you can mount a platform deck, or a basket on. That's our next project for this bike, which I hope will be getting a lot of use real soon.

Now that wasn't all we did, and the entire day was fun. We walked everywhere we went. Had a ton of fun. In the evening, Mrs. Guitar Ted wanted to go shopping with Ben's wife, so Ben and I planned on hanging out down at Mike's Bikes, kind of like we do every February.

That entailed a bunch of tom-foolery with beers involved. My favorite part of the evening was getting to hear more early Marin clunker stories from Mike himself. I learned more about the Koski Brothers, Joe Breeze, the switch from steel Schwinn S2 rims to Ukai aluminum rims, and early disc brake experiments.

Yesterday was spent mostly at Ben's shop hanging out where I got to see Ben's Big Dummy- Fat-Lite set up. He has Marge Lite rims shod with 2.4" Bontrager XR-1 tires which yields a width of 70mm on the tires. I rode it around and it was really smooove. 

Then we came back home and hung out with our family to see some fireworks. A great way to cap off a nice, relaxing time off. 

1 comment:

Jerry said...

it was great to see you and mrs GT this weekend. I gave you quite a double take when you walked in the shop.