'Best of all you won’t feel guilty when you reach for seconds from the holiday dessert tray' (Roundup)

To fill you with Holiday cheer, here’s a Christmas tree made of recycled bikes in the Dutch city of Groningen.

The most wonderful thing about this is that it takes my mind off another Dutch Christmas tradition that makes me so very uncomfortable.

Commute By Bike

Zip Ties for Snow TiresBut let’s return to the many good ideas associated with the word Dutch.

Fritz Rice of the Dutch Bike Co. in Seattle believes he’s found a low-cost alternative to buying studded tires: zip ties.

It’s quick, it’s cheap, and yes, it looks completely ludicrous.

BUT. It works. It works beautifully.

I can accelerate, brake, and corner with aplomb, even on the vile snowpack/sheet ice mix the plows leave in the bike lanes. The zip ties dig nicely into the hardest packed surfaces, but they’re thin enough not to bounce the bike around at low speed or on short pavement sections.

Commute By Bike

Winter Cycling InfographicThere has been no shortage of articles on winter commuting. But what we’ve lacked is an infographic. Until now, thanks to the Toronto Star. If this doesn’t get those hesitant winter cyclists out there on the road, nothing will.

You may look a bit funny. Your friends and colleagues will call you crazy. But it’s warmer than walking, and best of all you won’t feel guilty when you reach for seconds from the holiday dessert tray.

Commute By Bike

Attention Holiday Shoppers…
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11 thoughts on “'Best of all you won’t feel guilty when you reach for seconds from the holiday dessert tray' (Roundup)”

  1. Sean says:

    That zip tie solution looks clever, but I can’t imagine changing a flat is any fun.

    1. Ted Johnson says:

      True. I also wonder how many people have tried this–only to realize that they can’t use their rim brakes. Click through to the actual article. There are more photos and a funny grudging acknowledgment that Fritz did not come up with this idea on his own.

  2. peteathome says:

    I was going to mention that the zip-tie method, while brillant, only works if you have disk brakes.

    1. Ted Johnson says:

      Or coaster brakes, or no brakes.

  3. Sue J says:

    Duly note taht the zip tie thing doesn’t work so well with the rim brakes that most people have.

    1. Ted Johnson says:

      Definitely. See above.

  4. BluesCat says:

    No snow in Phoenix, but I’m wondering if you would even WANT to try to change a tire out in a blizzard?!

  5. matt says:

    well the zip-tie thing was a complete bust for me. all of them snapped on the way home

    1. Ted Johnson says:

      That’s disappointing. Did you ride on any surfaces not covered in snow or ice?

  6. mark says:

    In a former job, I actually used to sell zip ties. There are several different grades of them out there & many are really cheap (like the ones that come in a jar from Home Depot or the like). If you’re still interested in trying it out, look for ties from a local electrical specialty store. Brand names like Tyton, Catamount or Panduit are usually quite good and will not (should not) blow out when used like this. You should be able to find them online for $10 or less for a bag of 100 in the 8″ length, 50 # tensile strength.

    1. Ted Johnson says:

      Awesome comment, Mark. Thanks.

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