My name is Erik and I have too many bikes. My wife, Kyla, also has too many bikes. It makes for a full house!
First though, something about me. I’m an academic, living in Coventry, England. Like most kids, I rode a bike and then grew out of them. I rode a bike occasionally after that, when I lived in Vermont and briefly when I lived in Portland, Oregon, but I got back into cycling when I started cycling to work here in England.
My brother-in-law had given me a cheap mountain bike, and it was faster to cycle to work than to drive at rush hour, so I was on my bike.
I got an upgrade of my bicycle through the cycle scheme, a brilliant programme that allows people to space out their payments for a new bike with pre-tax pounds. I got a Brompton, an English-made folding bike that would tuck under my desk.
I was truly hooked though when my wife got me a Raleigh frame that I stripped and rebuilt as a fixie. I got and rode a few other bikes, a Diamondback and an Apollo, but the real step change was riding in my first sportive.
I’d just finished my doctorate and Kyla set me a new challenge, to ride 100 km in a sportive out of Stratford-upon-Avon. Besides riding to work, I started riding longer distances. I had a 10 mile circuit that Kyla laid out that I rode regularly, but we found first a 40 mile route and then another, linked 40 mile circuit so that I could practice the full distance.
I did that first sportive in August, 2011, and it was followed by lots of sportives and quite a few bikes. Here’s the full list of my current bikes:
- Raleigh fixie
My name is Kyla and I also have too many bikes, due partly to liking cycling but mostly to a slight collecting obsession I have. Like Erik, I grew up cycling – I remember a wonderful Infra Red Chopper Mark 2, replaced by a 1980s Raleigh Silhouette mixte in coffee, with racing handlebars. After the Chopper, it seemed very fast.
I didn’t cycle again until many years later in Japan where I had a lovely mint green shopper that went everywhere with me. Another long break from cycling followed but I started again just over a year ago after seeing Erik’s pleasure at riding and deciding that I wanted to get involved. My collecting drive meant that in bicycle numbers, if not fitness, I caught up fast.
My bicycles are:
- Schwinn Cruiser 7 (for swanning around when there are no hills in sight)
- Raleigh Chopper Mark 2, Infra Red (just completing the rebuild)
- Fuji Finest 1.3 (my new road bike)
- Dahon Vybe (folder)
- Raleigh Wisp
- Raleigh Lenton Sports (still in pieces)
- Raleigh Lenton Marque III (also in pieces)