Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Bunsen burner


I took Thom to nursery on my bike for the first time this morning. Even managed to load up some more nappies and wipes. It was a little bit cold, so I put his big coat and a hat on underneath the helmet. He was still a bit sleepy at this point but I think he enjoyed it at least as much as he would have in the car.

I bought he Thule child seat which I can remove (apart from the frame mount) when not transporting Thom. Pretty impressed with it so far and its a breeze to cycle with the electric assistance of the X3.

If you want to get a Van Moof use this code VRR#NE0K-TJFU-WLZJ  to get a discount 

Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Child Seat

Thom bike seat finally arrived. A bit later than expected thanks o the global problems with shipping, thanks Brexit! Looking forward to zooming to the nursery on the bike.

Thursday, November 11, 2021

The head that tried to strangle itself

COP26 is currently going on up in Glasgow, so far we have more delegates from the fossil fuel industry than anyone else. Lot of mention of the electric car future, no enough mention of active transport. To try and do my bit I have been walking to pick up Thomas from nursery. Only a small act but 2.5MK there and back but saves something, plus I often walk past a line of cars waiting to park.

I have ordered a child seat for my X3 which is going to arrive tomorrow so should be able to pick him up on the bike which should be fun. Though he looks a bit like a goomba from super Mario with the helmet on.

Sunday, November 07, 2021

If you say the word

VanMoof X3 Box
On Thursday I finally received the bike I had ordered back in September. I rather large box arrived containing my brand new VanMoof X3 electric bike. The X3 packs a 503w battery with a claimed range around 30 miles. 

I bought this on cyclescheme a government backed scheme while enables you to purchase a bike via your employer. The payments are made over 12 months and are taken out of your pre tax income so you save paying the tax on them. 

Vanmoof bike toolkitBefore I was able to take it for a test spin I have to assemble a few items. Fortunately all the tools required come bundled in a neat little kit with he bike. The kit also includes a pump to inflate the chunky tyres.

The X3 is designed to be low maintenance, it uses hub gears which are covered from the elements. The chain has a good guard over it and the wheels are fitted with mudguards. It's all nicely engineered in a way to maintain pleasing aesthetics. 

The electronics and battery are all build into the frame. This helps the bike look quite normal, however it does mean that the battery can't be removed to charge you have to plug the bike in. This isn't an issue for me as I have a garage with power but for some might be a deal breaker.

Matrix display on X3 Bike
On the top of a the tube is a very basic matrix display which displays some status information  including the current speed while riding.

There is an inbuilt lock which with a tap locks the motor and activates at alarm. Anybody who attempts to interfere with the bike will be treated to a very loud alarm. There is an inbuilt modem and sim card allowing the bike to phone home with its location. I believe this is used by the bike detectives to track down stolen bikes. The X3 is also able to be registered in with Apples find me so you can view the location of the bike from your phone. There is also a manual method to unlock the bike tapping in a code if you phone is out of charge.

The Bike is controlled by an app on you phone, this controls some of the gear settings, the chime of the bell and records speed distance and assistance of rides. One thing I would have really like to see is some integration with Apple Health. While you are getting assistance you still have to pedal so some calories are being used!

I popped to the postoffice using the boost assist to ride up the steep Cow Lane in Wilmslow. This is exactly what I bought the bike for, I was able to quickly pop to the town centre and back at least as quickly as if I had used the car. It only used about 8% of the battery on using full assistance and boost up a steep hill so can make plenty of trips before needed a recharge.  

X3 post assembly
Overall so far very impressed will write up a more long term review once I have used it a few more times. 

X3 front wheel motor


Friday, August 20, 2021

Night City


This morning I completed Cyberpunk earning the Temperance achievement leaving Jonny Silverhand to take over Vs body. I had already completed as many of the ending the other ending branches. Personally I've found it an amazing game, in spite of the glitches (of which there are many!).

I bought Cyberpunk 2077 back in December. I got a deal with it on stadia which included a free stadia pro edition to play on. Its a huge world you can get lost in, it might not have been the groundbreaking event that it was hyped up to be. It is however in my opinion a solid and enjoyable game. I hope that they release some extra content for it.