Wednesday, July 30, 2014

How bicycles were made.... a looong time ago

We live in a time where so much information is readily available to us. With Google and youtube you can find or stumble into stuff.  This was one of such stuff I found.  An old video documentary about Raleigh bicycles by The British Council. It showed how Raleigh design and fabricated their "state of the art" - now old style bicycle. No carbon fibre and only steel was used. :) What I like very much was the process of manufacturing.  The bottom bracket is one cool process! 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Good online shopping experience from Chain Reaction Cycles

what is this?? 
This happened a few months back.  Like many, I shop online quite a bit. One of the advantages is that I can check out the items online, read the reviews and compare the prices without ever going into a bike shop.
The not so good thing for an online purchase is that you can't really touch and feel. Also you can't get it on the spot. There's always a shipping time which can vary from a little as 3 days to 15 working days. Chain Reaction Cycles is one of the leading online bicycle parts store which I buy from. The experience have been great so far and recently I encountered a bit of delay in shipping. There was an exchange of emails with the customer service and she asked that I wait for 15 working days. She even send me the E-documentation (to declare missing parcel) in case I still did not receive the parcel after that time frame.
The parts came eventually and I sent the customer service lady, Delphine a friendly note that I got it. Thanking her on the clear instructions and advice.
And I thought that was it... 2 weeks went by and I received a parcel from CRC.
I smiled when I opened it. It was a hand written letter by Delphine of Chain Reaction cycles!
Simply to apologise that the parcel did not come as fast as it could be and to thank me that I like the CRC experience. 
Ok, the jersey was abit over the top and I felt like a "roundish" walking advertisement.....  but the jersey fits!!! 
I was also very touched by the handwritten note by Delphine. Who really writes and send out a handwritten note this days? Well, CRC did!!! And I am really impressed. This really sets the bar for shopping, online or retail.
So what was your best online, retail experience? Please share it with me.

**I like this comment by Gary a lot ; which sums up why I wrote this entry.
"Friday Duo No one is perfect and sometimes mistakes are made. But some service providers really understand the concept of Service Recovery and I will always remember such experiences."

Hand written note!!!
Believe me..I am breathing in already... 
looking like a F1 logo plastered Mamil.... 

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Monday, July 14, 2014

Falling in love with the Moulton again

This is a nice video which I found that talks about the Alex moulton bikes. This weekend I rode my TSR and it was a nice experience. Yes, its like the Toyota Corolla of AM but its still rides just as fine. I was glad to have a friend who tried it and rode it again and again... .he was quite blown by the experience! haha yes, Terry thats u!
My friend Terry trying Alex Moulton TSR for the first time! I think he likes it haha

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Cycling improve fitness and helps you pass IPPT!

photo by Julian Lim 
Saw this post on Lovecyclingsg Facebook and it made me smile. It was a cyclist who managed to pass his individual physical proficiency test (IPPT) AFTER failing 6 years in a row! The reason he gave was cycling!
For folks who are reading this outside Singapore. SG, all men below 40 years of age are required to do national service (2 weeks) yearly. Part of the requirement is the IPPT involves running a 2.4km under a time limit. Many after reverting back to civilian and not exercising tend to fail it. More of IPPT here.
I can attest how hard it is....if u don't exercise :)  
This is his actual words "I hope this post encourages some of you that are afflicted by our national obligations. After cycling regularly for 6 months from a total sedentary lifestyle to being a bicycle commuter on some days, my fitness has improved to the point where I can pass. (Failed for the past 6 yrs)" Julian Lim
Steady lah and well done!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Tour Divide on a Surly Krampus SINGLE SPEED!!!

The Tour Divide is an ultimate adventurer bike route.  Its a 2700 Miles cross country, starting from Banff( Canada) to the border crossing at Mexico. Its not a big commercial event and definitely no RaRa. This is what makes it so interesting.  Go click here to see the more details.
On Facebook I saw  Montana Miller just completed the ride. On a single speed. Oh Wow. That's freaking amazing!
Single speed for a longggggggg journey.  He did it! 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Crowd sourced Lovecyclingsg Tee design

Lovecyclingsg is a community led cycling group and when there was more requests for another round of Tee, we thought it would be most appropriate to have the community submit their ideas of what it meant to be LCSG. As a gesture of appreciation, we will give the winner a tee....and of course the bragging rights
to have his/her design on Singapore most fun cycling group. 
To me, LCSG is more than just cycling. It's a meeting of friends and to explore the sights of our city, Singapore. Its magical when strangers meet, they can start to chat about bicycles and the best eating places.  I searched my blog and laughed about the cool creative sketch by Tah Ching and Joeel.
cool and creative sketch by Tahching
So please help us make LCSG Tee a success. Share your thoughts and designs on what makes LCSG here. Thank you for reading this! 
This is the current logo and motto for ur re-interpretation 
Use this to sketch ur ideas! 

Friday, July 4, 2014

Worn and beautiful VS nice and shiny

I am a designer and in my day job we design stuff. One of the question I constantly ask myself is how perfectly "clone like" products have become. I mean... It's the usual.... everything's new... it's sleek and clean. The smell of new paint, shiny and glossy It's perfect! Like this bike in the picture below. That also happens to be my friend's dream bike at the moment. Cervelo P3. That damm thing just looks like it's about to take off!  Darren, you know you want it haha....
Really slick and sexy.... Cervelo P3  photo credits by
I know it moves his mojo and I think many.
But it does not for me. 
I like the worn in look. Like a part of nice worn in jeans. The feeling that a something has been used, not abused. Worn in by the passage of time and constant use. It just honest.  
Somehow, I also noted that steel and aluminium materials tend to wear well.  Check out my New old bike....  It's cheap hi-ten (maybe chromo.. I dun know)  frame and its almost 20 years old. I still love to ride it.  DSCN9902
Modern plastics, esp when painted to look like metal. Really look like crap when it's scratched. It just feels cheap. It feels disposable. 
Looking at the success of Brooks leather saddle and how the company is milking its English heritage. It turns out new products based on design eons ago... but subtly improving the functionality and retaining the original intents and materials.  
Could there be a similar and latent need for more "retro looking"components.Could there be a combination of steel metal components that derives inspiration from the older iconic accessories. Like the Shimano 600 arabesque re-issue with modern parts reliability? I know that will surely move my mojo!
So what will move urs? 
image taken from internet

internet image of old shimano 600
Mojo definition:
Taken from Austin powers show. The stuff that gets u going all excited and inspired! ...haha