Scenes from a typical cycle ride to work

The riverside path in to Oxford from the south has recently been resurfaced making the journey by the Thames much more pleasant. To add to the excellent riding surface, there is a spectacular array of wildflowers to see as I ride along. I took the opportunity to grab a few photos…

The view to the north of the Thames towards Oxford just after coming off the ring-road at Isis Bridge
Just some of the wild flowers growing along the river bank at this location
Another view looking north towards Oxford

Preparing and Fitting the Edelux II Headlamp

Having unboxed and inspected the new lamp it is time to prepare it for fitting to Rose, my trusty Thorn touring bike. First, I used the old wiring harness from the original headlamp as a template to cut the new cable to size:

cutcabletosize
The new lamp cable cut to the same length as the old one.

Next, I stripped away a few centimetres of the cable sheathing to expose the two inner conductors:

preparedcable
The conductors after the cable sheathing has been stripped away.

Because these two conductors will be close to the road surface at the centre of the wheel hub they will need protecting with some heatshrink tubing that is supplied with the new headlamp. I use an electric heat gun to do the shrinking. It is like a hairdryer… but much much hotter!

heatgun
The hot air gun ready for action.

After cutting the heatshrink tubing to the correct length, make sure to use a suitable tool for holding the work while heat is applied. Remember, the air from the gun is very hot and it only takes a few seconds to complete the task.

firstheatshrinkcuttolength
The first heatshrink piece cut and ready for heating.

Here is how it looks after shrinking down:

firstheatshrinkcoolingoff
The protected conductor cooling down.

Once cooled, another piece of heatshrink tubing is applied at the point where the two conductors enter the cable sheathing.

secondheatshrinkcoolingoff
Extra protection for the conductors.

Now the conductors are ready to have the crimp connectors fitted. It is easy to fit them with a small pair of long-nose pliers.

crimpsfitted
The crimp terminals fitted ready to attach to the hub generator.

As you can see, the crimps each have two sets of tabs. One set of tabs is bent over the copper conductor to create the electrical connection. The second set of tabs wrap around the insulation to add mechanical strength to the connection.

preparedcrimpheatshrink
Preparing the crimp connectors to survive the open road.

Time to add more heatshrink tubing, this time to protect the crimp connectors from damage.

finishedcrimps
Ready for the road!

The electrical connections are now prepared. We can now fit the headlamp to the bike…

newlampfitted
Rose has her new headlamp.

The new headlamp has been fitted. As you can see, I had to replace the mounting bracket as well as the headlamp.

connectedtohub
Wired up and ready to power the headlamp.

The crimp connectors take their place on the hub generator ready to supply power when needed.

cablerun
The cable is secure against the front fork.

The cable runs up the front fork as before and is held securely in place to prevent it fouling the brakes.

readyforanightride
Ready once more for the daily commute.

Rose is now ready for the next commute although it looks like she could do with a bath (the riverside path that forms part of my commute has been quite muddy recently). You can also see the rechargeable headlamp on the top of the handlebar that provides extra lighting and some redundancy if one lighting system should fail (I also run two tail lamps for the same reason).

Rose has a broken headlamp

Poor Rose. Years of cycle commuting has taken its toll and her hub-powered headlamp has fallen to pieces.

brokenbikelamp
Disaster strikes! Rose has lost her headlamp.

I have chosen to replace the headlamp with a Schmidt Edelux II LED light from St John’s Street Cycles.

newlampbox
The new lamp has arrived.

I like the simplicity of packaging. It suggests that all the effort has gone in to designing the light, not the box it comes in.

openedlampbox
The box contents at first glance.

The new headlamp is unveiled. What else has come with it?

lampboxcontents
Everything is supplied to complete the replacement.

That’s everything needed to complete the replacement. The extra coiled cable is for running to the rear of the bike to power a tail light. However, Rose has two large Cateye LED lamps powered by batteries that help keep us visible at night.

As you can see, the lamp supplied is the version with the 140cm cable which will need to be cut to length and prepared for fitting to the front fork. More on this in another post…

 

Before and After…

My local bike shop recently spent some time pampering Rose, my touring bike and while there, she was treated to a new cassette and chain. What I didn’t realise was that the middle ring on the chainset also needed replacing. How did Rose tell me this? Every time I put power down through the pedals, the chain would skip and make horrible noises. Ouch! Poor Rose…

So, out with the debit card and a bit of searching found me a replacement chain ring and the tools to fit it. Rose is a happy bike once more!
The image shows the old and new 36 tooth chains ring side by side…

Old and new chain rings
Before and after – the old and new chain rings