My new bike: Breezer Villager

I bought a new bike on Saturday. I've wanted something with a hub dynamo for a long time, and finally found one in my price range and in a style I like. It's a gorgeous piece of bike and rides amazingly. I miss the suspension fork on Sydney's roads, but it has much snappier handling than my cheap old MTB.

$1050 from the wonderful folk at Cheeky. Amazing value for integrated lighting, and came with mud guards and a very sturdy rack. Only down side is the seat isn't the most comfortable. Might swap it over for the MTB one. Apparently the price is because it's the end of this line for Breezer.

Wanted: Tightly compressed, sunny music for my cycle commute

I love listening to music and I love cycling into work. Not having a death wish, I don't ride along with headphones, oblivious to my surroundings. So I've rigged up a set of stereo Bluetooth speakers on the handlebars, which connect to my phone running Spotify for the music. The speakers aren't brilliant though: no bass, limited mid range. That pretty much rules out most electronic music, which needs some bass and clear mids. So I'm searching for music, suitable for cycling, that will sounds decent on these limited speakers.

If you've got a Spotify account, you can look at and add to the collaborative playlist I've set up.  If not, drop me a note in the comments.

So I suppose the specifications are:
  • Sunny, happy music you'd listen to on a bright, sunny Summer day.
  • Compressed sound that'll sound good on a $5 transistor radio over FM.
  • No reliance on heavy bass or mids.

Music currently in the playlist:
  • Belle & Sebastian - The Boy With the Arab Strap
  • Belle & Sebastian - I'm a Cuckoo
  • The Fratellis - Chelsea Dagger
  • OutKast - Hey Ya!
  • The B-52s - Rock Lobster
  • Miss Li - Bourgeois Shangri-La
  • Washed Out - New Theory
  • The Virgins - She's Expensive
  • MGMT - Time To Pretend
  • Cut Copy - Lights & Music
  • Franz Ferdinand - Take Me Out

Child bike seats are problematic

Louis is in daycare and Holly starts back at work two days a week on Monday, so our attention has gone to a seat on our bikes for the boy to help with the daily commute.  It's a bit problematic.

To start with, Australians get royally ripped off. The Weeride, pictured below, costs US$60 in the US.  In Australia? $170. On current exchange rates the price should be around $61.


WeeRide is a front seat, so the kid sits in front of you but behind the handlebars. That means you can chat with them, and the bike is a bit more stable than a rear seat.  When I tried a friend's WeeRide, my knees hit the seat. Not ideal, though I'm told if it's properly installed that's less a problem.

So we've been looking at rear seats. Problem with those is that you can't generally use panniers with them, so how do you carry all your kid and work stuff?

One seat range that might solve this problem seems to be the seats from Hamax.  They have rack-mounted rear seats and a matching pannier that will fit underneath.  Alternatively they have the "Kiss" seat, which hands from its own frame-mounted carrier and looks like it might have space for a pannier!


Anyone got any experience with these seats?  Ideas? Opinions?