bike upgrade

2016-09-15 NEWPORT, OREGON, USA -- We had our tandem bicycle serviced and upgraded. We took the bike out for a spin. The bike feels much more solid and responsive, mostly because the timing chain (which connects the pedals of the 2 riders) is tight.

Our bike now has a detachable pannier (a side bag) to carry Kero, snacks, and weatherproof clothing.

We started at the Hatfield marine research center, and headed via Idaho Point marina to Yaquina Bay bridge, the south jetty, and South Beach state park.

The boardwalk at South Beach state park is popular among vacationers and wildlife enthusiasts.

Noriko had her handlebar adjusted so that she ride with improved safety and comfort. Kero admires his reflection in Noriko's side-view mirror. The mirror also reflects sunlight onto Noriko's jacket.

oops bumped my bumper

2016-09-13 NETARTS, OREGON, USA -- I damaged my truck's rear bumper. I backed up into a basketball goalpost placed in a parking lot. Nobody hurt, no damage to other people's property, no affect on driving our vehicle. Next time I ask the Nissan dealer to service my car, I'll ask them for a cost estimate on bumper repair.


co-motion visit

2016-09-12 EUGENE, OREGON, USA -- We visited Co-Motion, a company that manufactures full-sized tandem bikes that can be disassembled for travel.

Co-Motion is located several kilometers away from Bike Friday.

Co-Motion exudes a high-class top-end image.

Co-Motion's headquarters houses their factory, sales, and showroom. They were preparing for a major bicycle trade show in Las Vegas.

The model I salivate for is the
"Java" tandem with Rohloff internal gears and carbon belt drive. All bikes are built to order, starting with frame material.

bike friday visit

2016-09-12 EUGENE, OREGON, USA -- We visited Bike Friday, a company that manufactures folding bikes.

Bike Friday is located in the west side of Eugene.

Bike Friday's headquarters houses their factory, sales department, and showroom.

Oregon has an impressive array of manufacturers that produce mechanisms requiring precision, for instance bicycles, light aircraft, trumpets, and folding portable tools. I suspect this is due to the large number of craftsmen who work in Oregon.

This jig, nicknamed "Fluffy", stress-tests bicycle frames.

Each bicycle is built to order. Each sack contains parts for each order. Some parts are made in-house, some are delivered from suppliers. Bike Friday keeps a just-in-time inventory. Bicycle assembly commences when each sack is filled.

The model I salivate for is the
"New World Tourist" with Rohloff internal gears and carbon belt drive.

Walter, a sales consultant and avid cyclist, gave us a factory tour and explained bicycle mechanisms to us.

Chris Botti concert

2016-09-11 MEDFORD, OREGON, USA -- Noriko and I went to a musical concert by Chris Botti and his band.

They played at the Craterian Theater (named after Crater Lake national park) in downtown Medford, Oregon.

Chris Botti happily allows his audience to take pictures and videos.

In the encore performance he invited the audience to come close to the stage.

The band members enjoy scripted and ad libbed banter with each other, and with the audience.

Truth be told, I had brought my trumpet method book and Chris's CD in vain hopes for an autograph.

tandem bike ride

2016-09-08 WILLAMETTE MISSION STATE PARK, OREGON, USA -- We took our tandem bicycle out for a spin. We hadn't rode for several years because we were enjoying our kayak.

We removed the tailgate from our pickup truck, and loaded up our bicycle on the truck bed. We wanted an 8-foot bed but the longest bed on a Nissan Frontier is 6 feet. I decided that suspending the bike frame would damage it the least. 4 straps hang the bike. The front wheel is removed, and the front spoke is fastened in between bolts.

Our bike is an KHS Tandemania Comp. This is a nice 2-out-of-5-star tandem.

No luggage container means Kero must stay with the car. He is visibly disappointed.

We biked through the Willamette Mission state park and watched the Wheatland Ferry. This is a high-tech electric boat that carries up to 9 passenger cars to and fro. We rode it several years ago when the boat was brand new.

boat slide

2016-09-04 SILETZ, OREGON, USA -- Here are pictures of a boat slide, something parks in Japan don't offer to boaters.

Last time Noriko and I visited this park, there was only a gravel parking space for a few cars and a narrow dirt path leading to the water.

Now they have a paved parking lot, complete with a crosswalk. I cannot recall the last time I saw a crosswalk at a park with a boat launch.

The top of the boat slide has a metal frame shaped like a goal post. At the top center there is a hole for passing through a rope.

People with boats load their boats on the slide, and connect their boat to their vehicle (typically a pickup truck) using a rope.

The instructions say to use a 130-foot (39-meter) rope. A bus might be 12 meters long. 40 meters would be the length of 2.5 buses, parked back to back.

The slide slopes gently at first, then steeply.

It is a fairly long drop to the river below.

For Noriko and me, we would need to carry our kayak by hand to and from the water. I am not confident that we could do it.

The river flows slow and shallow this time of year. When the water level is higher, we might like to paddle in our kayak, if we could somehow get our kayak on the water.