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Monday, April 29, 2013

8 Things You Can Carry by Bicycle (But Probably Think You Can’t) [Bicycling] by @ellyblue who will be in Columbus May 24th


By Elly Blue
I’m convinced that you can carry anything by bike. Skeptical? Listed below are a bunch of things either friends or I have successfully transported by pedal power, and how we did it.
Chocolate Cake
Mmm, cake! Delicious, but not the most stable substance when, say, stuffed into a melting cardboard box and bungeed to your rear rack. But there is a secret, imparted to me by friends who like to bake: Carry your cake in as tightly fitting a box as possible, and place the box, right side up, into a square-bottom tote bag that you allow to swing gently from one hand while you carefully steer and brake with the other. Your body absorbs all the bumps and shocks of the road, and you’ll still be able to read those frosting birthday wishes when you get to the party.
Mattress and Bed Frame
My bike trailer is large (it’s handmade out of bamboo by a Portlander and measures about 4×6 feet), but not large enough for a bed unless I add a bunch of boxes or milk crates to lift the bed above the wheels. So what did I do when I bought a new-to-me bed and didn’t have anything to raise it with? I stood the bed and frame on edge and tied it all down tight. I also carried the friend who was helping me move the bed, surfing serenely alongside in the sunshine.
Yard Tools
It’s spring. And maybe you’re planning to get a new shovel, broom, or rake—all too long to fit into your bike pannier. My friend Lauren offers this time-tested advice for getting one (or all) of these home using only a spare inner tube: Slip the tube over your handlebar and on to the steerer tube, wrap it tightly a few times around both your top tube and the rake (parallel and next to the top tube, business end to the back) and slip the other end of the tube tightly over your saddle and onto your seatpost.
12-Foot 2x4s
I have done this only on my Xtracycle longtail. Here’s how it works: Attach the boards to the side of your cargo rack, with the center of the boards next to your rear hub. Point the boards out slightly to avoid interfering with your pedal stroke. Use a wedge, like your backpack or your giant bag of nails and other stuff from the hardware store, to angle the boards outward from your feet. Watch out for parked cars!

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