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It’s a set-up

Jared and I undertook the task of assembling the 3 Surlys last night; a fun, if time-consuming, job.

Our first surprise was learning that the third bike (which we’d neglected to remove from its box on Sunday) was not olive like its siblings but cherry red. A quick size comparison confirmed that this was indeed the smallest frame and therefore Katie’s by default. [Cue envious thoughts from yours truly.]


There’s something to be said for taking pride in your work, and we were certainly proud enough when we finished the first one. Here’s Jared giving it a final check:



Jared was kind enough to photograph the spare parts that were supplied with the bikes for easier recollection and cataloguing at a later time.


Nothing quite says “I enjoy my work” like a half-crazed grin.


Jared’s machine, the largest, sports a 21″ frame and humongous 700mm tires. He may get vertigo up there.

I’m sure the various adjustable parts – seat height, handlebar angle etc -will be tinkered with more than few times before the trip, but for now, we have three fully-functioning bikes. All that’s needed now is panniers and we’re pretty much ready to rock and roll. Scary biscuits, indeed.

The thought of a slow, frostbitten death on the Kazakh Steppes may be the only thing stopping us from going earlier than planned.

Footnote: I took my Surly out for a quick run this afternoon to see if everything was properly affixed. It took about 10 minutes before deciding that on the pedestrian-filled bike paths of Bundang, without a bell or lights, and with darkness approaching, I might as well just run the bike into a wall. A quick visit to the bike store has now made the bike street-legal (if Korea even has legal requirements for bike safety), but methinks I need to be less scared of a few little scratches…tomorrow…or maybe Thursday…


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