Sunday, April 22, 2007

The usual suspects gathered up in Volta Region for yet another exploratory ride. All was going well until Scott snapped a chain. Quickly enough we had a spare link in place and resumed the slog up to Amedzopfe.

I was off being discreet snapping photos of a church door when Scott unveiled his brand new frame design to SJD. It is quite clever really -modeled from a decade old Gary Fisher Hoo-Koo-E-Doo steel frame. The ride starts nice and solid, but becomes nice and plush just about when you are as far away from home as you can get. There isn't even a weight penalty. Here is the prototype.


So Scott's bike that has been 'round the world with him finally was "called home" as they might say in Ghana. We left Scott in safe hands at the Lucky Boy Spot to sort out offers for taxi rides here and there; quick welding repairs in the next village; offers to retrieve another bike quickly. We offered to wedge a piece of bamboo into the tubes and giddy-up.

Scott seems like a bright enough guy with a good sense of the basic laws of physics and an awareness that the nearest hospital might be an hour away once a taxi picks him up. As such, he assured us that he would not actually ride back downhill to the cars. So off we went completing the loop that was rained out two weeks earlier.

Back at the hotel three hours later with no sign of Scott, we were beginning to consider whether or not to send out a search car, or just settle up the hotel bill by selling his belongings and head back to Accra. Luckily for him we fell asleep under the mango tree.

Soon enough Scott rolled in on the new and improved prototype with packing tape structural enhancements. With four miles of jeep road field testing logged he declared the design fit for wall art.

Macgyver would be proud.

1 comment:

Bill said...

I would like to thank everyone involved in the recovery of that old now newly modified bike & its rider. That old bike frame & not so old rider have seen a lot of ground pass under, and sometimes over. Ever notice one drives an auto but rides a bike, which machine has more control over its operator? But with a little expert welding, maybe some of that bamboo structural reinforcement, it will be ready for another global trot.

3M Corporation might appreciate the research notes producing the use of the packing tape over the timeless duct tape (excellent choice).

Again kudos to everyone involved and thank goodness for the effect of an African Mango tree after a long bike rides.