If you are one of the five readers of this blog, you've heard a lot about the Raleigh Wayfarer as of late. I've also talked a bit about the Worksman "Cycle Truck". And I've thrown a few mentions of my Surly Long Haul Trucker. But I've barely mentioned the fourth bike, my '70's Centurion Le Mans converted to single speed. And that's because lately I've barely ridden it.
With the acquisition of two bikes over the winter, the Centurion has fallen by the wayside. And that's a shame, as before the Wayfarer and Cycle Truck came into my life, the Centurion was my daily rider!
The Centurion came into the stable with the purpose of being the sexy, lightweight, stripped down fun machine. That it became my daily rider was a nice side benefit. I loved its relative lightness and its low maintenance, and can easily see why a lot of people like single speeds, fixie or freewheel. Since the "conversion" a year and a half ago, the only things that I've had to deal with (besides flat tires) were brake adjustments, chain tension adjustment, and a bottom bracket overhaul. The only changes that I've made since the conversion was the addition of a small Soma front rack. It's the bike I've tweaked with least.
But having four bikes of mine (plus April's three) in a tiny apartment is too much, and I'm feeling push come to shove. I have a touring bike (LHT) and a "transportation" city bike (Raleigh), plus the Cycle Truck for cargo. Do I need a sexy single speed? Or should I sell it and have it be useful to someone else? I figured I should ride it a few more times, to see if it's worth keeping, or if I should part with it.
So I rode the Centurion the last few days. It's been fun. It's nice to ride a bike that's so fun and sleek. But the thrill is over. I've come to realize that I'm not digging the bullhorn bars anymore. Sure, I can change handlebars. And maybe throw on a "porteur" style front rack to overcome the lack of functionality of the Soma rack. But do I want to tweak with another bike? Not right now. I don't need another project,* I need to finish up the current projects. And there is something big coming up on the horizon, something that will mean less space and a need for some cash. I'll be talking about this soon.
Selling a bike shouldn't be a big deal, since it's an inanimate object. But I know I'll miss this bike after I sell it. We had some fun together. I'll miss it...until the next bike comes along.
*Need is of course subjective.