Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Voyage of the Dawn Tourist

 Last night, at 9pm, after putting a coat of poly on the basement floor, instead of eating dinner and going to bed like a sane person, I decided I couldn't wait to get my paws on the Dawn Tourist.  I removed the supremely uncomfortable "mattress" saddle that was on it,  and put on the Brooks B66S I had taken off of Robert.  I also took out some of the slack in the front brakes, and took it for a quick test ride.  Still needs work but good enough to get to work and back I think, if I keep it reasonably slow.

 I backed it down the  front stairs this morning and admired it in the front yard.  It has been staying in the front entry while the floor is being finished (my house is like one of those "shift a piece"slider puzzles at the moment,  with everything out of the basement moved to the first floor).

I headed out into the humid morning.   After complaining last week about how much I hate a bag slung on my shoulder, I had to use my Freitag for my lunch.  I'm starting the search for a saddlebag- am hoping to go to Harris this weekend to check out the options.  I think a black one would look best, but most of the "modern" ones seem to look best in green.  Am contemplating one of the Brooks retro ones if they're functional.

 The shifting on this bike is very accurate! By far better than I've gotten Minerva to be, and the gearing feels spot on for me.  I haven't checked the cog size yet, but the low gear is low enough, and the high gear is enough to give resistance down the hill of the Longfellow.

About halfway to work,  the saddle suddenly shifted to point up- guess I didn't tighten it enough last night. So I thought, no problem, I put a 13mm wrench in my bag this morning just for this purpose!  D'oh,  I'd put it in my normal pannier instead of the Freitag.
I stopped at a firestation (firemen have tools right?)  and asked them to take pity on me.  They did have the right wrench, and I tightened it up enough to get up the rest of the hill to work.  I think I'm also going to lower the saddle a smidge, but mostly it was a lovely ride.

Every time I leave my cubicle I pass it, and admire what fantastic shape it's in.  I can hardly wait  until it's really cleaned up and shining

Rode home and it was so lovely- a bit of wind, but lots of sun, not too hot, perfect day to be on a bike.
Stopped a bit to smell the flowers.

There are a couple of interesting markings:
Someone scratched an ID number into the chainstay (note the oil port on the BB)
There's also some kind of serial number on the seat tube.  The lugs don't have the excitement of later raleigh race frames, but the pinstriping is in great shape

All in all, a VERY successful maiden voyage!


  1. Sexy! Does it have stainless steal rims?!?!

  2. Lovely! The "mattress saddle" is a blight on humanity, very nice choice to swap it for a brooks.

    I'm impressed that you stopped at the fire station. I would be so shy and nervous about that, but then again, I'm sure they were more than happy to assist a woman on a bike :)

  3. That's so great. Love you enthusiasm for this bike. :)

  4. Smart thinking to talk to the firemen. Also glad to hear they have metric tools! (or was it adjustable?)

  5. Calm my heart and tell me you have her firmly locked and secured on your porch. Oh my, what lovely pictures, except the one of her being surrounded by cubicle walls...despicable! ha ha. Lovely, nice start.....

  6. David,
    Don't worry- no bicycles are outside- they're inside our front entry, which unfortunately is very very small, and means that going in and out requires climbing over bikes.

    I don't think it has SS rims- I suspect they're chrome, although the previous owner said that they were probably SS spokes.

    I guess I spend enough time on job sites, that I didn't even think about being shy with the firemen. They did actually have a metric set, and after a bit of searching we found a 13mm. It helped that I didn't have to say "oh, I need a wrench, don't know what kind, poor damsel in distress..." I did make a generous donation to the Jerry's Kid's boot they had on the sidewalk..

  7. Dinner and bed in the evenings? Who does that during prime bike testing time!

  8. I feel very relieved no bicycles are outside. Same as with my children, close during the day and put to bed at night. speaking of which, tonite the 5th, weatherman is saying, northern lights visible in north sky. Wouldn't it be lovely to see them by bicycle. Sounds like a photo op!

  9. Well if the Dawn Tourist hasn't just cropped up in Garnet Hill catalog: http://www.garnethill.com/three-quarter-sleeve-knit-wrap-dress/womens-fashion/apparel-accessories/dresses/170490