Sunday, August 26, 2012

The Books In Back Upon A Rack

Top photo is bag of books in place.  I have, however, removed
a bungee cord, so no, the bag doesn't just sit there.
Second image is the bike rack on back as the bike
is also parked in a rack at Warde Hall, MMU.
I won a $25 gift card last spring by biking to work. It was to a bike shop I rarely visit, but I was happy to go there and spend the card on something.

I bought a back rack. I've long had a front basket on my bike, but find it's unsatisfactory for my briefcase when I'm carrying books—the extra weight in front makes the bike seem unsteady.

I put the rack on before RAGBRAI, figuring to use it to carry my tent, which I did for one day before deciding that was ridiculous. I did use it again on the final days to carry a small bag with a spare outfit so I could shower at the end of each day, so the rack was still useful on RAGBRAI.

Today, it rained, and I planned to go to the office. By the afternoon, when I was leaving, it was damp but no longer raining, so I decided to ride. Since I was working on syllabuses for fall classes, however, I had books to carry.

So I used a canvas bag and bungee cord.

I'm happy to report that the scheme, while not aesthetically pleasing, worked quite well. The extra weight over the rear wheel is lower down and doesn't seem to change the center of gravity of the bike to make it wobbly. I suppose it does block one rear light, but I have two others, one on the very rear of the rack and the other on my helmet, so I think I would still be OK lightwise.

All in all, it was a successful experiment. No longer will I have to try to catch Audrey to place bag of books in her car. If need be, I can carry them myself on my new back rack.