Sunday, September 26, 2010


Brandy the fishdog and I took our maiden voyage to Comstock and back tonight. There'a some fine tuning and practice to be done before we show off, but the basic problem is solved. Turns out the biggest part of the solution was just getting into my dog's head and figuring out what shit I was throwing at her that was just unreasonable. Dogs are so eager to please, but you have to give them parameters they can deal with. My biggest mistake by far was no slack in the line. We've also gone to shock cord (aka bungee cord) for the "line", which takes the edge off the transition between slack and taught.

I'm glad that's behind us, because I'm all fired up about u-lock holsters. I've been mulling solutions over the last few months about an elegant rack design to carry a u-lock, and I've been banging my head against the wall. My major criterion are that the lock doesn't rattle and that you can get it in and out easily. Sounds simple enough, but the designs I've seen don't make a lot of sense to me.

Yesteday, I stumbled across Kent Peterson's blog about the Trek Earl, and I saw the u-lock sitting there, and the light bulb lighted and tilted me off dead center.

But no matter how good you might be at visualizing shit (which I am particularly not), sometimes you just have to try and build it to find out what will or won't work. I did that tonight and found out what won't.

I have some different ideas for what will and that's pretty much what will be occupying any mental space that's not taken up with grown-up stuff over the next few days.


Anonymous said...

Deep thoughts:

U locks always have to be relocked before holstering.

It may be possible to design a holster with two holes rather than a slot. You would place the U into the holes and lock the lock to the bike (or rack). You have to lock the lock together anyway.

The holes could have gaskets to prevent rattling, and hold the U lock securely.

The heaviest part of the U lock could hang at the bottom, keeping it firmly in the holster.

A holster welded to the frame of a bicycle could also provide a locking point without removing the from the holster.

Anonymous said...

Deep thoughts cont.

In other words, you might want to play with hanging the U lock with the straight edge down, and with the user locking the lock into the holster.

The other incremental advantage of this design would be the curve of the U would be pulled into the holes by the weight of the lock, making it more secure.

--Geekier Than Thou

Pat S said...


You are even more obsessed with my holster than I am. This is cause for great worry. I'm going to stop just short of asking you if you've taken your medication(s).

That said, your suggestions are duly noted and are therefore tumbling vigorously around in the idea hopper.

Anonymous said...

Have you seen the Ahearne where he build a U-Lock holder into the rack?

That said, I just throw mine in the basket.

Hello from Brooklyn!


Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, one more thing: if you are adding weight to the rack, you want it to be as far back and as close to the center as possible. That is, if you picture the point where your front tire pivots on the ground, the weight should ideally trail that point as you move forward.

You can try an experiment and load some weight all the way to the front of the basket, forward of that point, and you'll see how lousy handling becomes.

I guess everyone's obsessed. The thing is, as I ride along, the thing I am looking at most on my bike is the basket, so I tend to think about it a lot.