Biff, and the art of Bicycle Maintenance

So at the behest of Nate, a full two years later, I finally read Lamb, The Gospel According to Bif, Christ’s Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore. A very witty, sometimes corny, sometime heartwarming and quick read. Though perhaps I should do a full book review, since I don’t feel like it, I’ll just leave my comma filled stint at that. Read it if you haven’t, it’s quite good.

I am still riding, though I am feeling under the weather with a head cold so I got a ride this morning. I have been averaging about 23 mile each week through rain, sleet snow or whatever horrid weather combinations you could think of. I am still enjoying it, but the road salt and muck is hard on my poor bike. I clean it as often as I can, but there still manages to be a thin crust of salt over everything after the icy/snowy rides. The frame is Aluminium, so it is largely unaffected, but all the bolts and fasteners and suffering under the corrosion. I guess this is the price you pay. I look at my bike, and then consider the poor car! At least if my bike turns in to a pile of rust, I’m only out a few hundred bucks and parts are cheap and easy to come by. The car sits outside at all times, and remains covered with road salt despite any effort otherwise. That alone should be reason for anyone not to drive in the winter and take the bus, walk, or bike to their destinations.

School is starting to cook. I am taking a seminar on the Turbulent Alluvial Boundary Layer (read a river) where we are discussing how turbulence forms coherent flow structures and the impacts of these structures on bedforms and channel morphology. Very cool stuff, but heady. Below is an image of one of these structures called a ‘hairpin’ vortex. The ‘rope’ in the image is a coherent flow structure that is common to all fluvial flows in open channels (read rivers). This image models the creation of the vortex around a hemisphere in the flow (a marble). The cool thing about these structures is that even under complete uniform conditions, the instabilities still develop, almost despite understanding to form turbulence.

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One response to “Biff, and the art of Bicycle Maintenance

  1. Hmm.. that doesn’t even look like water to me, but then, sat. images highlighted on the weather doesn’t look like clouds to me either… lol.

    This brought to mind something I saw on the tube a couple of years back, and I can’t even begin to tell you were this “object of interest” is anymore, but I was facinated by it. There is a place were the tide rises and ebbs through a tight channel.. and sitting in the midst of the channel is a small rock island. The show was talking about eddies.. and this particular site is one of the best places to study eddies in the water. This island causes very very large eddies to form.. some that could easily suck under a small boat. I wish I could remember more about it for you, but then with your background and knowledge base, you probably already know about the thing. If not, look for it sometime when you have the chance. It’s very much what you are studying. 😀

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