week 25...
getting it together

David's Garage

See Aimee. See Aimee build. Build, Aimee, build! These trikes are child's play. Why, we're having less trouble with these than with that helicopter car we were trying to build with Jess's Mechano set.

Wanna make your own? Here's how!
how to build a penninger trike in 7 easy steps...
Step 1: Receive boxes by mail. Jump for joy, hug the driver, then take boxes around back of house. The best area to work is on the lawn, where the green colour of the grass will help you easily find all those silver and black nuts and screws.
Step 2: Open every box and spread each piece out onto the picnic table. It will help you find things later.
Step 3: Spend a few moments examining the detailed instructions provided by the manufacturer to ensure a proper assembly. Then feed them to the dog.
Step 4: Attach the long yellow bit to the wide yellow bit. Pop on the front mud guard and the front wheel. You're practically done! Then take off the front mud guard and pop it back on, only facing forward this time.
Step 5: Always remember the importance of a comfortable seat. When you're going to be cycling as much as us, the seat should be adjusted to fit your body. Note: it is best to attach the other two wheels and take it down from the boxes before adjusting the seat.
Step 6: Attach the rear brake calipers. Remove the rear brake calipers. Attach rear mud guard. Remove rear mud guard. Attach rear mud guard and brake calipers through the same hole. Tighten screw. Loosen screw. Tighten screw. Shimmy brakes forward to avoid rubbing. Shimmy brakes backward to avoid rubbing of mud guard. Loosen screw. Adjust brake pads. Tighten screw. Shimmy forward. Loosen screw. Shimmy backward. Shimmy forward. Tighten screw. Remove screw. Dispose of mud guard. Attach brake calipers.
Step 7: Take it off the box, because you're done! Hooray! Now for the next lesson...

How to ride a Penninger
How not to ride a Penninger
Fact Title:
Given Name: Justin
Surname: Gusset
Age: 22
Shirt: Yellow

Frank's Bicycles
Time at Frank's:
Six months
Time Left at Frank's:
Not long now...
Moving to:

Advice for customers:
Learn to change your own tubes. It's easy.
Advice for Frank:
He's my boss, so I'll just say this: Stop drinking coffee and switch to tea.
meet justin, bike shop guy
Have you ever walked into a bike shop and gotten that feeling that you don't belong because you don't know your wheel-stoppers from your gear-switchers? You won't get that feeling here, because Justin will take very, very good care of you (and if your bikes are as cool as ours, he may even do it for free)...

First of all, why should we trust you with these bikes? Because David trusts me with his, and if I'm good enough for him, I'm definitely good enough for the likes of you.

What do you suggest for spare parts on a trip like this? Number one is tubes. It looks like the ones on there are fairly thin, and once you get up North, there's a plant called a Goathead, with huge, sharp spines that'll puncture these. I've even seen them puncture the thick ones. Better get a few when you head across the middle.

I know it's a weak segue, but speaking of spare parts, what do you do in your spare time? I'm actually working on registering the fastest 1969 VW Beetle in Australia. I've been working on it at home for about 5 years... the bastard's got Ferrari parts on it!

Who's the first girl you ever kissed? Huh? Why would you want to know that?

Hey, I'm asking the questions here, bud. Now, who is it? Er... I guess that would have to be Sharah. Sharah Sinclair. Now tell me why or I take a sledgehammer to your cluster.

Because at least once in everyone's life, they look up their name in a Google search. Someday, Sharah will look herself up, wonder why her name is on beimers.com, and find it next to a picture of you revealing her innermost secrets. Great. Perfect. Now where's my sledgehammer...?
where's wally wombat?
Whew! Wally made it through our stay at David's without getting eaten by Louie! We'd better get rolling before Wally's luck runs out.

Look for Wally this week. You'll feel a sense of accomplishment!

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tick tick tick... Aimee Worry Factor:Kevin Worry Factor:Today's Weather:
We're getting the runaround. We know the trikes are in the country, since Saturday, but we can't have them. And the only person we can contact is a fast-talking, jargon-spewing bureaucrat named Carl.

Here's a typical conversation with Carl:
Me: "Hi Carl, Aimee again. I'm just calling to ask when we'd be able to pick up our shipment."
Carl: "Aimee-whats-your-last-name-Aimee"
Me: "Lingman. Aimee Lingman. Tracking number 7474-505B. I called 20 minutes ago."
Carl: "Lingman-right-listen-I-still-don't-have-the-consignment-documents-from-ACP-Global-Intermediary-Exportation-Central-Office-or-the-quarantine-backlog-agents-QBT-I94-from-Tanya-you'll-need-a-triplicate-condensation-mediate-infrastructural-cardiogram-buffalo-menstrual-nugatory-parabolic-GGNFB-indicator-beforeIcandoanythingmoreforyou. I'll call you."


  It's around this time that I realize I don't even know where Carl fits into the whole "we get the trikes" scheme. Nor do I know if he can really help me. He could be anyone from the President of the freight company to the airport maintenance man who had to lift our boxes onto the conveyor belt. I do know that he's in Melbourne and that doesn't increase my confidence in his ability to get our trikes out of the Brisbane Customs Lockup.
  In frustration, I gave up and passed the ball to Kevin. He was able to talk to someone named David (our life is full of Davids) who asked for envelopes full of money before he would deliver the goods. It sounded better than the deal that Carl was offering, so we took it.
Dave: "Have you ever had a really good kick in the balls?"
Kev: "Why, are you offering?"
frickin' frack! Bikes Arrived:5:30 Yellow Bike Assembled:9:30 Today's Weather:
The trikes are here! They're here! They're actually here! Do the dance of joy! Dee dee deedle deedle dee dee deedle deedle dee dee deedle deedle dee! Whee!
  After Steve the delivery man swiped our envelopes of cash and bid us farewell, we decided that sunset was the ideal time to assemble your first bike (let alone trike). Once we figured out the basics ("Wheels: six. Seats: two. Check."), it was all business as we got down to work putting together the coolest cycling machines man has ever designed. One man. The man. Thanks Penninger! You da man!

"I'm going to go sit in the driveway for a while."
- Kevin.
screws loose Red Bike Assembled:11:30 Adjustments by Justin:6:00 Today's Weather:
We're on a roll now. Today we were able to put together Kev's trike without any of the same wasted minutes shoving the mudguard/brake gizmo back and forth and back and forth. It went smooooothly. Except when Kev forgot to put the chain on. And when he put the front mudguard on backwards.
  I must say, I'm glad that we took the time to put them together ourselves, rather then skip off to a bike shop. Putting together your own bike is like putting together a computer: most people are too scared to unscrew a few nuts and peek inside, but once you do, you soon realize it's all just a lot of Tab-A Slot-B. Simple stuff!
  Just for safety's sake (and you'll know we're all about safety, once you've seen our $15 helmets), once we were done doing our damage, we took them over to Justin at Frank's Cycles for some final adjustments that we'd only trust to a qualified professional. He seemed to know what he was doing.

"I feel like I'm in a pedalboat, but naked!"
- David.
headaches begin... Times around Block:Today's Weather:
Let's make a special note of today: it is the day that Aimee had her last cup of coffee. She's giving it up for the trip, in an effort to appear even more healthy. We should have added a question in the Bikeabout Pool about how long that would last.

"Now all we need is a Canadian Tire."
- Kevin.
last minute Fare to Indooroopilly:$3.20 Spent at Indooroopilly:$250 Today's Weather:
Four months of prep-time and we still leave things to the last minute. Today we went out and bought all those little things that make life easy when you sleep on the side of the road: duct tape, tensor bandages, a tarp, a water jug, stuff like that. All that's left is finding a place to put it all without looking like a Mexican pickup truck.

"Well, that's a very suspicious looking thing on my pants..."
- Aimee.
big day tomorrow... Distance to Big Pineapple:75km Today's Weather:
It's Saturday. This is it. Tonight we're being dropped off at the Big Pineapple, spending the night in a campground, and tomorrow, it all begins...

Honk if you love tricycles!
suss: (v. trans.) to figure, plan, solve all parts. Usually used with the word "out", as in to "suss something out". (We're not sure if this is an Australia wide term, or if it's just a Davidism).
Got those mud guards sussed out yet, or are they still giving you grief?

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© 2002 Kevin Beimers & Aimee Lingman. Come travel light, that's Hobo Style.