Category Archives: Bike Tech

With a Name Like That, It Has To Do Everything

SERFAS ST-13i CO2 Inflator Tool 

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SERFAS ST 13i

Features (N=13):

  • 8, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1.5 mm hex (check your bicycle and fixtures for sizing)
  • Phillips* screwdriver (roughly a #1 tip)
  • Flathead screwdriver (approx. 5/16”)
  • 25 and 30 Torx (hexalobular internal**) (check your bicycle and fixtures for sizing)
  • Bottle opener
  • CO2 Presta Compatible Inflator (for the pump challenged who would rather pump more CO2 into the atmosphere, generously support their bicycle shop/Amazon, and add empty CO2 canisters to the dump.)
  • 3.3 oz (94 gr)
  • Gender: Unisex (per vendor)
  • Cost: $27-$36 + S&H, Tax
  • Origin: Taiwan
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SERFAS ST 13i

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* Invented by American Henry F. Phillips.

** Torx, developed in 1967 by Camcar Textron, is the trademark for a screw head with a 6-point star-shaped pattern. Popular generic name for the drive is “star,” as in “star screwdriver” or “star bits.” The official International Organization for Standardization (ISO) name is “10664,” “hexalobular internal.”

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“Fix it” at the Albany Public Library

On May 13, 2016, staff from the Albany Public Library, the Capital District Transportation Authority, Capital Roots, Capital Region Complete Streets, and the Albany Bicycle Coalition celebrated the installation of three Dero-brand Bicycle Fixit Stations at branches of the Albany Public Library. The photos tell the whole story:

  1. Mike of the Albany Public Library who installed all the stands. He appears here with his handiwork at the Arbor Hill Branch

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    Man of the Hour – Mike

  2. The first “customer” – Albany Police Department Police Officer re-attaches his toe clip.

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    This is GREAT!

  3. Executive directors Amy Klein of Capital Roots and Michael Franchini of Capital District Transportation Committee confer

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    Conference

  4. Riders at the stand at the New Scotland Ave. Branch

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    Delaware Ave.

  5. Riders at the stand at the Delaware Ave. BranchThe Albany Public Library and Albany Bicycle Coalition successfully applied to the Capital District Transportation Authority for funding under its Traffic Safety Ambassador Program. Each service area of the Albany Public Library now has a repair stand conveniently located near the front of each host branch.

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    New Scotland Ave.

A Press Conference was held at the Arbor Hill/West Hill Branch (148 Henry Johnson Blvd.) followed by a group ride to the Bach Branch fixit station (455 New Scotland Ave.) and to the Delaware Branch fixit station (331 Delaware Ave.)

The Traffic Safety Ambassador Program made $20,000 in Federal funding available for capacity building projects designed to assist public, private, and non‐profit organizations in the Capital Region in providing bicycle and pedestrian safety education and training. This program works to achieve the following New Visions 2040 goals: 1. Improve bicycle and pedestrian safety by reducing the number of vehicle crashes involving bicyclists and pedestrians and 2. Increase the number of bicycle and pedestrian trips (especially commuting trips) in the Capital Region.

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Education – SECURE BIKE PARKING

As we draw nearer to the cycling season (for many, we never left it), it is time to renew your pledge to secure your bicycle every time you ride it. Here are some tips … including a little hype about Dero products … from the staff at Dero, the bicycle and “fixit stand” manufacturers. Note that this is from the bicycle capital of the USA, Minneapolis, MN.

Read on …

The Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition posted this (slightly edited) Q&A. Founded in 2009, MBC advocates for a city where bicycling is encouraged and everyone feels comfortable riding and is a big proponent of Protected Bicycle Lanes.

Getting your bicycle stolen is devastating, especially if it’s your primary transportation. While you can minimize risk with a quality lock and increase your chance of getting a stolen bicycle back by registering your bike with the police, where you park your bicycle matters too.

Q: What are the most common reasons bicycles get stolen in Minneapolis?

A: Making the correct bicycle lock is key to deter thieves. Using the wrong type of lock is the most common mistake made by cyclists. We recommend that people only use U-locks or non-cable locks, such as Kryptonite chains or the Abus folding locks. Never use just a cable lock as they are cut quickly and easily. A cable lock should only be used in conjunction with a U-lock or chain. It’s also important to be aware of what you’re locking your bike to and how you’re securing your bicycle.???????????????????????????????

No matter what, always lock yourbicycle. It’s tempting to run into a store and leave the bicycle unlocked for a minute, but it’s just not a good idea. Always lock your bicycle, even if it’s for just 30 seconds. Many thefts occur because of this split-second bad decision.

Q: Recently The Oregonian ran an article about a new trend inbicycle thieves – cutting through bicycle racks to steal bikes. Has that been an issue with racks in Minneapolis? Are the racks Portland uses similar to the Dero racks the City of Minneapolis uses?

A: I think we’ve been lucky in the Twin Cities metro area. We haven’t been contacted much with these types of issues. Based on the photo in the article, a pipe cutter was used to steal the bicycle. (Contrary to the article’s assumption, the cut is too smooth to be a saw.) Portland uses a rack manufacturer in the Northwest that uses a lighter gauge material for their racks. Dero racks use a heavier duty schedule 40 steel pipe. Both racks are susceptible to a pipe cutter, but a heavier duty rack will take longer to cut and may deter bike thieves. Another issue is that the racks use round pipe, which can be cut by a pipe cutter. Any racks that are inverted-U racks or hoop racks made with round pipe are at risk to pipe cutting. The Dero Hitch Rack that the City of Minneapolis uses won’t work with pipe cutters, since the pipe-cutting tool can’t spin all the way around the locking arms

Q: One of the suggestions in that article is filling racks with concrete to make them more secure. Is that something Dero has considered, and what other technologies might work better to stop thieves?

A: We’ve experimented with filling our Hoop Racks internally with concrete and that was a nightmare. It’s not economical, takes a lot of labor and time, and has to be done onsite at the installation location. A better option is to weld a chain on the inside of an inverted-U bike rack from end to end. We have manufactured a large number of racks for the City of Los Angeles and have included a chain welded to the inside. Pipe cutters can cut the outer pipe but won’t be able to get through the interior chain. The chain acts as a separate safety feature.

Q: Beyond locking to a secure rack, what other advice would you give people looking to secure their bicycles in the best manner possible?

A: If a rack isn’t available, make sure the structure you choose is made of steel, is strong and durable, isn’t bolted together (bolts can be removed), and is firmly installed to the ground or a wall. Make sure your bicycle doesn’t impede pedestrian right of ways or access to buildings. For short-term parking, lock to a closed steel structure like a bicycle rack (not a tree or short signpost with no sign). Make sure that you can’t remove your lock from whatever you are locking to. Ensure that at least one wheel is secured (this might not work for mini U-locks). For long-term parking, we recommend using a U-lock to lock the frame and one wheel (this might not work for mini-U-locks) and a cable lock to secure both wheels in place. In addition, if the bicyclist has an expensive seat like a Brooks saddle, we recommend using a short chain to secure the saddle rails to the seat stays. [ED: We disagree with this approach. The first lock installed – even a mini-U – should secure the rear wheel passing between the seat and down tubes. Go here for more info on the many advantages of the “Sheldon Brown Method.”]

Q: Do you have any advice for installing new secure parking on how to place it to minimize theft?

A: The best place for exterior parking is right next to the front entrance of a business. These locations usually offer window sight lines, lighting, and customer foot traffic, all of which help to keep thieves away. For interior settings (parking garages, bicycle rooms, and bike shelters), secure bicycle parking areas are the way to go. These facilities should consist of a fully enclosed room or cage with user key access, good lighting, and cameras. For home garages, locking it at night isn’t enough. Be sure to anchor a bicycle rack to the wall or ground and then lock to it. Also, install motion sensor lighting if you can. Dero along with other local retailers sell these types of products for home users. I highly recommend investing in these measures.

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Filed under Bike Tech, Locking Bicycle

Ears Cold? Try These

Here’s a handy way to keep your ears warm(er) and to reduce annoying helmet-head wind noise – Adventure Cycling’s “Cat Ear” Ear Covers.

Cat Ears Ear Covers 11-14-14

 

These are simple “polar fleece” triangles with a strip of hook-and-loop on each side to secure the “ear” to your helmet straps. Although the photo borrowed from Adventure Cycling’s “Cycle Source on-line shop shows red, they come only in black.

 Worth the $16.00 – part of which would seemingly go to Adventure Cycling’s programs.

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 Photos:

Model – Courtesy Adventure Cycling

Detail – With coins for reference

 

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Where’d you get that bike?

Where bicycles are made:

  1. 130,000,000 – Produced globally in 2007
  2. 67% produced in China
  3. 56,000 produced in USA
  4. 99% of bicycles sold in USA in 2013 were imports (16.2 million bicycles)

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Top 5 producers:

  1. China
  2. India
  3. EU
  4. Taiwan
  5. Japan

tumblr_n3itbg8hsn1rpvmfno1_1280 (2)Sources: Various as reported in Momentum, May-Jun 2015

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