akmal's bike park

akmal's bike park

Friday 20 February 2009

RTW route

This is my route for RTW.

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Minimal traffic, through Seri Alam, Masai, Taman Bunga Raya, Taman Bukit Dahlia and Taman Mawar.
Distance about 13 km, with about only 20 meter on the Pasir Gudang Highway.
Would take about 40 minutes to complete the journey, including the wait at traffic lights and crossing the roads.

Sunday 15 February 2009

Single Speed-ing

Yesterday evening while riding back home from work, something suddenly came to mind:
  • to ride casually
  • use a fixed gear
Thus I rode in a very relaxed way, and at the same time emulated a Single Speed bike. With a freewheel, still.

Heart not pumping as hard, not much sweat, and I enjoyed the route (albeit being the same old route). The bigger plus: I felt really relaxed when I'm home. I mean, mentally and physically.
It felt great! I felt as if I could do anything else. No need to take some time to relax or anything like that. To my surprise, I reached home 40 minutes after I started from the office. That's about the same time I would take if I rode 'aggressively'. With the high feeling and having some time before daylight ends, I intended to clean the RTW bike. A chat with the neighbour and the missus asking to go to the pasar malam with her, I was short of time. Managed to only clean the chain.

On second thought, it felt like being a Bangla riding on the road to and from work. I don't care much, anyway. I felt very good. That's the revelation I had yesterday, on riding casually.

On the SS, it was a surprise for me. I used a combo of middle ring for front, and 14T for the rear (that's the 3rd smallest on the cassette). I could climb the hill up the crossroad traffic light from Taman Mawar to Masjid Jamek Pasir Gudang. Either I'm getting fitter, or it's just simply the matter of fact that I hit the right combo of gearing.

Today on the way to work (yes, on a Sunday morning), I used the same SS setting and rode casually too. The mission is to gauge the time and exhaustion (if any) that I would reach. Same results - not that tiring, and about 40 minutes ride.


Considering a proper SS bike? Not yet. I love the extra gearing options that I have for now. The weight saving really is interesting, though...
Hmmphh... perhaps there are 5 speed cogs available for sale? Cheap?

Thursday 12 February 2009

Things that make my RTW easier

The journey:
Traffic lights.
Safe route (a bit far, but less traffic although there are a few doggies around).
Zikrullah: as a breath pacing tool, too.

The bike - 8 speed, v brakes, low rolling resistance tires. Can get through anything on the road - gravels, small holes).
Lights - headlight & tail light, plus backup light for night riding. Spare batteries too.
Gloves: half finger - easy to handle things - office pass card, keys, zippers, digging nostrils, etc.

Freshen up:
Shower booth in the toilet.
Shampoo & shower gel: courtesy of hotels. Can also get those mini bottles with pump (I saw one at Watson's).
Towel: Speedo super absorbent microfibre sheet. Measures only 15"x27" (38 x 68.5cm) but could dry the whole body.
Deodorant: simple odorless mineral salt - I got mine at Guardian, available from Cosway too.
Attire: non-ironed collared t-shirt, a pair of company standard-issued workpants, a pair of safety boots stored under the desk.
Hair: crew cut - no proper combing necessary :)

Bike storage:
Office pantry. Locked the bike, of course.

On Fridays, I would pool with a friend's car to masjid for solat Jumaat.


Thursday 5 February 2009


As if a yearly ritual, I fell down again last Sunday on the first day of this year's February. Last February I had the most serious fall so far while rolling downhill in Seri Alam with T-Bolt. This time it was in Ulu Tiram with Bianchi.

I must have accidentally pulled the front brake lever hard while going a long bumpy downhill section. Well, actually most of the route was downhill. Anyway, there I was, endoed with my left side of my head first to the ground. Bruises on my thighs near to the knees, left shoulder, and two left fingers including the pinky. I passed it as not a major one, for I still have my thumb, index and middle finger for my day-to-day chores - writing, typing and cleaning stuff in the toilet. Oh, and not to forget, gripping the handlebar - for RTW.

There were 5 of us in the trail that day, so I can appreciate the worries on everyone's mind. Alhamdulillah, I was able to ride without much problem. One thing I did notice, my vision was quite blurry and somehow not 'full'. Something like having a blind spot, but the spot is right in the middle of the front vision. Strange.

kurang hensem siket dah pulak...

I'm sporting scars from the fall, appearing most visibly near my left eye, left shoulder (able to hide it from the missus for a short while only), both arms, and both thighs near to the knees. Bruises too. At the time of writing, the bruises are slowly fading to yellowish.

Looking forward to this Sunday's ride!

Thanks to Jai for the photos, post-ride refreshments (plus lunch!), bathroom and the nice trail in Ulu Tiram