Due to previously reported ‘issues’ bike riding hasn’t featured on my agenda for some time but now things have changed I intend to get out and ‘do a bit’ again.
I figured the best way for this was to start gentle so I hooked up with fellow RetroBiker GT-Steve for a few laps of Salcey Forest ) which was probably the last time I rode a bike back at the start of March).
It was the start of a VERY hot day for the UK so we started the ride at 10am and did 17.674 miles of hot dusty trails. GT-Steve tore a valve off his front tube about 5 minutes out but after he switched tubes we had no more ‘mechanicals’
I did a lap of the woods on his Alpinestars Cro-Mega and I must say it rides brilliantly, much better than what I was riding on this day…
I’m a speed king you go to hear me sing
I’m a speed king see me fly
If you are
in the UK then you might well have heard of BT 21CN, this is where
BT are finally putting some massive investment into UK telecoms by
changing their Core Network.
To minions like me it means the possibility
of 24mb DSL in my house as equipment in BT Exchanges get switched to the new network. Further down the line they will be putting Multi-Service Access Node’s into PCPs (in plain English this means the green street cabinet (PCP) that your phone line currently connects to will get its own mini DSLAM (broadband equipment) and hooking these back up to the Exchange with fibre (FTTC) and then finally there will be fibre to the home (FTTH) where you might need to go get a funky new router or at the very least have BT come and fit you a new linebox as you will have 100mb internet in your house! (this last bit could take a while with BT )
If what I just wrote above doesn’t make sense here is a nice picture explaining how FTTC will end up
Image Copyright – BT Openreach ©
This is a ‘new style’ DSLAM enabled PCP – If you see one getting fitted in your street its good!!
I’ve been with my DSL provider Zen Internet forever, they might not be the cheapest but they are without doubt the best ISP in the UK, that’s why I’m still a subscriber
So I’ve seen speeds go up over the years but have been ‘stuck’ on 8mb ADSL2 (ITU G.992.4) for ages now so I got real excited when they asked me if I wanted to be on the priority list for a free ‘Regrade’ to ADSL2+ (ITU G.992.5), this is supposed to take me from 8mb to 24mb (if the line quality is good and the line length is short) and will get me on the first step of BT’s 21CN
I said yes, waited for a bunch of time and finally this week the regrade took place, a few tweaks to my Router/Firewall later and here I am on BT 21CN.
Sadly even though I am very close to my exchange I cannot seem to connect any faster than 8667kbps and my bRAS Profile is flapping between adsl8000 and adsl7150. It is getting slowly better though as before the weekend it was adsl6000 so my current maximum download speed has gone from 6000kbps to 7150Kbps
So I never got my 24mb ‘Speed King’ internet connection…..back to waiting
OK so the NOS Accutrax forks went back in ok, first time this bike has had the correct sized forks in it since I bought it!!
The steerer is still uncut so short term I have switched the stem and bars so I can use normal stem spacers until I am 100% happy with the length, then I will cut it down. I couldn’t use my current stem as it’s a Syncros Cattlehead with one of those pesky angled tops on it, preventing me from using stem spacers above the stem
I’m thinking about modifying a stem spacer but that involves diagonally and accurately cutting a stem spacer to work with the angled top of the Cattlehead stem and I only really need to do this if I’m not 100% happy with the bar height.
So for now we have this ugly silver Specialized stem paired up with some VERY cool and scarce Answer Alumilite DH bars (still with the original gold shim ). I actually really love these bars and might stick with them, the only thing I’m not sold on is their colour as the rest of the bike has a black and yellow thing going on…
Here’s another neat trick to use with Oury Grips on a hot day…roll them off ‘condom/prophylactic’ style and roll them back on the new bars…..yep, you guessed it……’condom/prophylactic’ style
Rolling it back on…
Continuing with the ‘body parts’ theme, what comes off the bike just looks sick….in fact do I need to spell it out or shall I just say “Pass the Butt Plugs”
So here we are with the temporary stem and bars and a mile of steerer tube…just while I convince myself the bar height is 500% correct…then the hacksaw comes out
So, for the first time ever maybe () I have two bikes in working order (just need to get the other five done now….)
The master plan has slipped timescale wise but it’s still intact….the Quiver IS being thinned out and I am gonna ‘Roll a fat one’ (so to speak), the fattie in question wears some REAL big rubber and when I say big I mean B-I-G.
A cyberbuddie of mine from the UK was out in Nevada recently with some spare luggage allowance and he agreed to bring one of these back for me (and one for himself) as at the time they were rare in America and totally unavailable in this country. (It’s not needed just yet but I couldn’t pass on the opportunity )
This is the Surly Larry, a front specific tyre for ‘you know what’ , the ‘other’ tyres are available here but they don’t really cut the mustard up front on a ‘you know what’
Check out this fattie…….
I know I could have cleaned the Syncros beer glass (its only used to store decals in though) but I wanted something to show the sheer size of this bad boy…
(cue Acme Rolf
“Can You Tell What it is Yet?”
If you can cast your mind back to February when I bought these toys for my Home Cinema, you might recall me talking about an issue I had with the Kef KUBE-2 Subwoofer….or maybe I never posted this up here .
Anyway, there is a fairly well known issue with Onkyo AV Receivers and KEF Subs, maybe other subs too (just try Googling ‘Kef Kube red light issue’) so I’ve been suffering with this for a few months. Basically you turn all the kit on, the Kef KUBE-2 sits there with a red light on it (not working!!) and about 20 minutes later it realises its purpose in life and starts delivering the deep rumbling bass it was designed to do. I roughly understood what was happening but I didn’t know how to fix it….basically the KUBE-2 was consuming lots of signal and the Onky amp wasn’t giving it what it needed.
Me being lazy just posted up a question on an internet AV forum and forgot about it after adding it to my ‘chores list’. You see, I have a Zen like approach to my chores list, just like every self respecting male should have. My chores list just ‘Is’ (If you have Zen figured then you will understand this phrase ), things appear on the list (normally added my Mrs Billy Goat !) and they just ‘are’ .
Eventually someone replied to my post and this is the official line from KEF:
In the test tone menu of your AV receiver, set the subwoofer output to
maximum, then you can come out of the AV receiver’s menu.
On the back of the subwoofer itself, set the crossover to maximum and
put the volume at a level which you are comfortable with as some people
prefer a bass heavy setup, but some prefer it more subtle, at the end of
the day it is personal preference. Set the phase to either 0 or 180,
whichever sounds the loudest. The ‘Bass Boost’ switch is also down to
personal preference and room conditions. What it will do is give you
either a flat response through the subwoofers frequency range, or give
you a raise of +6db or +12db at around 40hz.
This should then stop your subwoofer from going into standby as the
signal output from the AV receiver will be higher.
On the Onkyo 607 OSD menu’s you go to Speaker Setup>Level Calibration, scroll down to the sub and up the db (try starting at +10), then drop the volume on the KUBE-2 itself. Well, this works for sure, in fact the way I first had it set was
insane…the whole house was shaking .
I’ll tweak the bass levels over the next few days and fine tune it but the problem is now finally over.
So, where were we…….?
Ok, yeah, about a month ago I had just got my NOS Accutrax back from the paintshop and then all hell broke loose at home, so I’m picking up where I left off…
My friendly neighbourhood decal man had mailed me a bunch of repro decals a while back so task one was to get the new forks ‘decalled up’. I opted for black screen print onto a single clear sheet this time instead of pre-spaced lettering on a clear sheet as they are more robust, especially on the outside edge of a fork, plus I got two sets so I have a spare to use later when ‘trail damage’ trashes the first set.
Fatty & Skinny – 1″ and 1 1/8″ Accutrax
Spot the difference…
Decals now on, the next task was fitting the Chris King crown race to the forks, this was done using my custom made ‘Crown Race Setting Tool’
Perfect fit, ready for the EWR frame now…
Ok, time to breathe again….
Things have been very stressful since February, Mrs Billy Goat was suspected of having a very serious illness and all this time has been spent at hospitals getting loads of tests done, waiting for results, then getting more tests done, waiting…..blah blah.
Bikes (and pretty much everything else) have been on hold, hence the lack of posts here but on Friday we got the letter we have both been waiting for and luckily for us she has the all clear
So its Green Light time at Goat Central…..normal service will resume here shortly….stand by for a bunch of new posts