Thursday, May 28, 2015

Sylvia the Linus Dutchi and her changes Part 1

We got Sylvia on February 24, 2014 after searching for the right bicycle for me for a long time.When we were looking I had a few requirements. It had to be strong enough to carry stuff; it needed a low step through for my knee; it had to be small enough to fit me (I'm a very spritely 5'1"-3" tall. It depends on who measures me and my shoes at the time.) It had to feel right. I didn't want black; most of the bikes around here are black and I wanted a blue bike. Good thing I was flexible on the color!
I rode so many different bikes I almost gave up. I rode Treks, Giants, Birias, Raleighs, Specialized, Schwinns, a Montgomery Ward bike, and other assorted Craigslist contraptions. I rode old ones and new ones. I was beginning to think I would never find the right one for me. Then we heard about this little tiny shop that had just opened up, Transit Cycles. The owner let me take a spin on a black Linus Dutchi and it felt good and I could get on easily and just go, but I hated the grips and the brakes sucked. . Of course, me being me, I had to keep looking.
A few days later we went back and I tried out Sylvia. I didn't like seat or her grips, but the fit felt even better than the black one had. Plus she wasn't black. Duncan was willing to trade the rear rack for a front one and trade out the grips for some black foam ones so we put the deposit down and left her to be adjusted. Two days later the small size is available in blue. Oh well, she was already mine.
A week later we went to get her. On the final test ride to make sure she fit and was adjusted properly I found an old drum set. Her front rack carried home the little drum with no problem and that sealed the deal. She could carry stuff and she liked it!

The oldest picture I could find.
After a few months of riding I really hated the saddle (it pinched and not in a good way!) and my dear husband got me my Brooks. It's a B67s and has been the most comfortable saddle I've ever sat on. Now that it has some miles on it, it just keeps getting better and better. 
After about 4 months I had destroyed the rubber in the pedals she came with. Linus was really nice and offered to replace them, but I said no thanks. I tried some other rubber block pedals, but in less than 2 months they had cracked and were falling apart. I think the weather here just destroys the rubber and I hate plastic pedals. I did some research and ended up getting these bear trap pedals in green. They are nice and wide for my feet and they grip my shoes nicely. The only downside is that they really hurt if they hit you. Someday I hope to have rubber pedals that don't fall apart so fast, but until then these ones rock.
In this configuration she took me to work and on many adventures. Then I outgrew her 3 speeds and we got new wheels with bigger gears from my husband for Christmas. That's when the party really started.

To be continued.......


  1. It's impressive how much time and care you put into selecting JUST the right bike. But all those things really do make a difference.

    I prefer bear trap pedals too - for their grip. But yeah, the can hurt! A guy at my shop keeps trying to get me into some clipless pedals. No thanks.

    1. Thanks, I tend to be picky. I don't understand clipless pedals and my sense of balance would have me squished before I had a chance.