Why am I dripping with goo?

The temperatures today made it into the 40’s. A very welcome change, indeed.

I was meeting my friend Mindy for lunch a few miles from home, and thought “With temps this warm, I should take the bicycle out of storage and ride there.” So I did exactly that. When I returned home, I noticed my posterior had been getting splashed pretty heavily from riding through all the puddles. (Can’t really avoid them this time of year, lots of snow melting.)

Behold; A great Blue Dragon!

Behold; A great Blue Dragon!

What was required here, are fenders… Or at least fender. Looks like you can purchase these for $20 at the bike shop, but I’m longer on time and spare parts today than I am on cash. (Besides, I need that $20 for Chinese food later.) It should be easy enough to make something to fit under the rack here that would keep the rain off my hindquarters.

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Here’s the harebrained plan as it unfolded:

Materials. What to use? Something lightweight, easy to work with, and that I have laying about the house. Plastic seemed the obvious choice. I scoured the storage area for an old gallon ice cream bucket, thinking that would work nicely. No luck. I eventually noticed that I had an abundance of garbage cans. I think I counted eight of them not in use. I picked the one that seemed least likely to be used again, and headed to the garage with it.

A failed attempt of clamping it to my work bench and using a hand saw to cut it up convinced me to use more powerful options. Enter the DeWalt recipro saw.

Yes, I pieced everything back together for this shot.

Yes, I pieced everything back together for this shot.

As it turned out, the sides were nearly perfect to fit the rack.

As it turned out, the sides were nearly perfect to fit the rack.

Wow. First try, and I didn't even measure!

Wow. First try, and I didn’t even measure!

Now to adhere it to the rack. Bolts could have worked, but that would have required digging through bins… The perfect solution: ZIP TIES!

Marking the holes the need to be drilled.

Marking the holes the need to be drilled.

Ready for installation.

Ready for installation.

Beauty. Didn't even need the middle ones.

Beauty. Didn’t even need the middle ones.

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So, it looks pretty good, solid and all that. Time for a test! I grabbed a white t-shirt and put it on over my hoodie, donned some gloves, and went for a quick ride. I hit every puddle on my street at a speed of about 15 mph. (6.7 meters per second, for my physics friends.) And here’s the result of that test:

Huh... Wonder what it would have looked like without the fender?!

Huh… Wonder what it would have looked like without the fender?!

It appears I need to extend the fender further back. I had suspected that might be the case, since store bought ones cover 1/3 of the wheel. Back to the drawing board on this one.