BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

Jul 29

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Jul 27

July 27th - Brownhills High Street.
Next time you hear someone dismiss this place as a dump, a ghost town or worse, think of this.
Local traders have worked hard - with the Town Centre Partnership - to create the wonderful flower displays we have. Just look at that - it’s gorgeous.
It’s a tribute to the hard work and community spirit of the traders who’ve planted and kept watering the baskets, tubs and planters.
The place may have problems, but these people had a go, and made something beautiful. 
A wonderful thing on a lovely summer evening. Thank you.

July 27th - Brownhills High Street.

Next time you hear someone dismiss this place as a dump, a ghost town or worse, think of this.

Local traders have worked hard - with the Town Centre Partnership - to create the wonderful flower displays we have. Just look at that - it’s gorgeous.

It’s a tribute to the hard work and community spirit of the traders who’ve planted and kept watering the baskets, tubs and planters.

The place may have problems, but these people had a go, and made something beautiful. 

A wonderful thing on a lovely summer evening. Thank you.

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Jul 26

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July 25th - The Catshill swan family seem to spend a lot of time at Anglesey Basin, and tonight they were group-preening and loafing by the waterside, totally relaxed. The parents let me get quite close, but sadly, the  movement of the cygnets - still numbering seven - combined with low light made for terrible photos.

July 25th - The Catshill swan family seem to spend a lot of time at Anglesey Basin, and tonight they were group-preening and loafing by the waterside, totally relaxed. The parents let me get quite close, but sadly, the  movement of the cygnets - still numbering seven - combined with low light made for terrible photos.

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Jul 25

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Jul 24

July 23rd - Riding back home this evening, something shiny in the road caught my eye - lying on the edge of Green Lane in Shelfield, the debris from something that really shouldn’t happen. It’s a shattered bicycle sprocket.
This would have been part of the cassette, or rear group of cogs an the back wheel  of a cheap bike. It’s been used, as the teeth are worn, and the chrome coating ground through. Decent sprockets are made from high-grade alloys or steel, with some flexibility. Generally, they’re pressed or forged. 
This one is low grade steel, and has been made from cast material, making it inflexible and weak. It’s a fair assumption that under load, it’s cracked, and at some point catastrophic failure has occurred, and other debris in the road suggested as much.
Cheap supermarket or discount store bikes are often fitted with this kind of cheap componentry and fail in this kind of manner. Deprending on when it failed, this kind of breakdown could be very serious, and cause the rider to be injured - imagine if this had happened when cycling up a steep hill, like Black Cock Bridge, further on?
If you need a decent bike, and haven’t got much cash, a better option is to look out for a decent secondhand steed. You’d be surprised what you can get from Gumtree or the small ads for the same money.
A very, very cheap bike really isn’t worth the risk or hassle. They’re cheap because they’re made out of cheese, bus tickets and spit…

July 23rd - Riding back home this evening, something shiny in the road caught my eye - lying on the edge of Green Lane in Shelfield, the debris from something that really shouldn’t happen. It’s a shattered bicycle sprocket.

This would have been part of the cassette, or rear group of cogs an the back wheel  of a cheap bike. It’s been used, as the teeth are worn, and the chrome coating ground through. Decent sprockets are made from high-grade alloys or steel, with some flexibility. Generally, they’re pressed or forged. 

This one is low grade steel, and has been made from cast material, making it inflexible and weak. It’s a fair assumption that under load, it’s cracked, and at some point catastrophic failure has occurred, and other debris in the road suggested as much.

Cheap supermarket or discount store bikes are often fitted with this kind of cheap componentry and fail in this kind of manner. Deprending on when it failed, this kind of breakdown could be very serious, and cause the rider to be injured - imagine if this had happened when cycling up a steep hill, like Black Cock Bridge, further on?

If you need a decent bike, and haven’t got much cash, a better option is to look out for a decent secondhand steed. You’d be surprised what you can get from Gumtree or the small ads for the same money.

A very, very cheap bike really isn’t worth the risk or hassle. They’re cheap because they’re made out of cheese, bus tickets and spit…

Jul 23

July 23rd - in the Goscote Valley on my way to work, as the day started to warm up, I was drawn to a continual crackling sound. This always fascinates me; it’s the sound of gorse pods popping open with a snap, and scattering their seeds.
The action is induced by the warmth of the sun, and makes for an interesting diversion on the way to work. I love how the pods rattle musically when you shake the bushes, too.
It’s the little things that make summer, really.

July 23rd - in the Goscote Valley on my way to work, as the day started to warm up, I was drawn to a continual crackling sound. This always fascinates me; it’s the sound of gorse pods popping open with a snap, and scattering their seeds.

The action is induced by the warmth of the sun, and makes for an interesting diversion on the way to work. I love how the pods rattle musically when you shake the bushes, too.

It’s the little things that make summer, really.

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