16 February 2019

Avon Cobra front

At the MoT a few weeks back although a pass again,  Pepé was marked as needing a new front tyre at some stage.

It's about a mm above the wear blocks in the tread. So I have ordered a new Cobra.

There is a new Cobra Chrome on the market but at 20% more expensive than the standard Cobra I opted to stay Chrome-free.

It should arrive later this week so I need to get it booked in at Laguna to get it fitted.

12 February 2019

Crit'Air - France

In France there is a move towards reducing the level of congestion in the city and on the périphique and as a product of this to reduce pollution. The system is called Crit'Air.

The movement is spreading to other areas of the country with major cities and départments signing up to the "lower emissions zones" (LEZ) idea.

Essentially the idea is that when the air becomes bad, and it is usually in summer when the warmer air holds the smog in the air, that they can close areas of the city, and open them to lower emissions classes of vehicles.  And that is determined by the CO2 output of the vehicle.

Every vehicle accessing the city must carry the crit-air sticker on the windscreen/shield on the right side lower. On the bike it goes on the upper right of the fork leg.  They even produced a video on how to affix it!

Pepé is Cat 2.  

As we intend to go to France in the summer, I have applied for a sticker at a cost of €4.21 including postage.  

There is also an app that you can download for Apple or Android phones.  It will give you the traffic light system and access categories when the zones are active.  Amazingly there are lots of them! It would seem that from the last few zone activations that Cat 2 gets through.

So lots of information foe you and a photo to follow when the sticker arrives.

11 February 2019

France in Summer - Vercors

Once the widened and more comfortable seat comes back we can get some longer trips under our belts to get Claire back into the swing of being on the bike.

It's a few years since she last had a longish journey when we went to France for the Somme Centenary in July 2016. Three years is a long time away.

But planning goes ahead. Ideally for the bike or failing that in the car. I am planning it as a bike trip but the posts are on the Devall Travel blog that we both contribute too.  

That blog can be linked here:  

The target area is the Vercors region to the south-east of Lyon and north of the Cote d'Azur.

It is an area of some dramatic scenery and some rather odd roads, many of which are on the  bucket list of many riders, such as Combe Laval and Petits and Grands Goulets.

10 February 2019

New Rear Seat 6


I messaged Else to see if my seat had arrived as I had heard nothing from Hermes Parcels and when I went on line to track the parcel they had delivered. it.

Adrian got back t me with a simple thumbs-up.   So I asked for progress.  My seat is 34th in line to be worked on....  

So it is a matter of wait and see....

26 January 2019


So. Wuss time.

The weather through the week was either heavy frost (car scraping) or light snow.

So I emailed Laguna to say if the weather didn't improve maybe postpone today's booking and re-arrange.

Jim emailed to say they would come and pick it up. Free of charge.

I accepted.

Pepé went this morning. Back this afternoon.

Test passed but an advisory on front tyre that's getting low. I know that it is getting near replacement time.

21 January 2019

New Rear Seat 5

The seat I bought on eBay went off today to Elsemade with Hermes.

The cost was £6.49 for a package up to 5kgs. When I weighed it the box and seat came out at 2.66kgs.  The cut off for the cheaper rate is 2kgs.

I have also changed my mind about the finish. The suede effect might look good but when I saw the picture of the faux carbon effect cover I decided that was the way to go.

So. Let's see how long it takes for Alastair to turn it around.

Update 25/01/2019

Hermes delivered the package on Thursday, yesterday.

20 January 2019

Oxford Monster Lock

Good old Father Christmas left this under the tree and I have used it to secure Pepé against the bike thieves that infest our civilised society.

It is supposed to be difficult to cut through and carries the Sold Secure label.

Okay it won't stop the scum with a van and a team to lift the bike in, but it might deter the wanker that tries to ride it away. Or at least make them go and try someone else's bike instead.

I opted for yellow as it looks bright as a reminder it is fitted. The alternative was black like my Abus HB and the Oxford Chain I also use. 

January Meldrews

As expected I needed to use the dbPower unit to kick Pepé into life. Once connected it was the first press of the button the get him started.

I let him warm up whilst I went and got togged up. . The air temperature according to my car was 2°C.

Once I set off I found I had an air gap around my back! My thermal technical shirt had ridden up leaving a gap. Luckily it didn't affect me too much on the ten mile ride to the Blue & White Café.

When I went out on New Year's Day I forgot to reset Trip 2 to keep a total of mileage. This time I did.

After breakfast and a chat I needed the jump to get Pepé going again. Once started he runs perfectly.

The run back was pretty gentle. The wet patches had dried out a bit and it felt safer on two wheels. It was no warmer though.

So total recorded Trip 2 mileage looks about 20 miles. I didn't check when I stashed him away in the garage.

Next week. The MoT.

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