Friday, June 27, 2008

Further Faux-French, Front-Load Fun

A while ago, I experimented with adding a front basket to Carla's bike. Of course, as soon as I saw the results, I was smitten and more than a little jealous. Thus, I give you the Front-Load Fixie!

The parts list on this one is a bit simpler. I just took another Yaffa "bubble cube" (how did we end up with so many of these things in the garage?) and ran some heavy-duty Velcro straps through the cube holes to hang it from the bullhorns on my fixed gear. The bottom edge rests against my front brake without
hindering the brake at all -- although I have an idea that would keep the basket off the brake using an old, heavy-duty reflector bracket that I just haven't had time to mess with yet.
This setup has simplified my commuting and grocery runs immensely. I just pack my daily clothes into an old backpack (my messenger bag works too, but it's overkill), toss that into the basket, and off I go. I'd been looking for a way to get my gear off my back for the soupy-humid Iowa summer months; the fixed is set up for a rear rack, but I don't like rear-loading my fixie because it prevents me from using the "grab the front brake and lift the rear wheel to get a good starting pedal position" trick as explained by the late, great Sheldon Brown.

The backpack in a basket really helps for those grocery runs on the way home from work. Rather than trying to cram a couple items into an already-loaded messenger bag, I just take the backpack of clothes out of the basket, throw it on my back, and put the groceries in the now-empty basket. Slick!

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