Thursday, 15 March 2012

Cycle computers

You might have already seen my recent post on GPS gadgets  in which I explained why I prefer to avoid electronic gizmos for running.  Anon left me a comment, asking how I could say that and yet I have a cycle computer.  Was I contradicting myself or being a self righteous git? Well, Anon, I'd like to say that was a fair question and so here's my answer.

The photo above is of my Cateye computer, having reached 2,000 miles late last year.  I got it shortly after I got the bike it is on; my Thorn Audax.  Rachel (Mrs Ramblings) had given it to me for a birthday present having already said "for your birthday, why not buy something for your new bike, anything you fancy and I'll pay".  That presented me with a challenge.  It would have seemed strange to say I'll replace all the components with something really fancy - Ultegra groupset - having only just bought it.  I thought about some clothing but was boringly content with what I already had.  I thought about an ultra light LED light costing several hundred pounds but my existing one is reasonable.  Then I hit on the idea of handlebar bling in the form of a computer.

Having looked at a few I thought about going upmarket and having a heart rate monitor built in, or maybe GPS or a cadence function (pedal revolutions per hour).  In the end I went for the Strada wireless, costing about £45 and a whole lot less than some other models on the market.  It's a pretty basic wireless model with speed always shown an a range of secondary information - real time, trip time, trip distance, reset-able odometer, a permanent odometer, maximum speed and average speed.  That's it, no more.

It adds a bit of interest to cycling, telling me what I have done and it's nice to click though the information after the end of a ride.  I can monitor my progress and see how I am doing and it's quite satisfying after a nice ride to see I've done 60 miles or hit 39mph downhill.

So maybe it is just a little nerdy but I still like it.  I'm content with it, knowing it is a fairly basic model that works perfectly and sits unobtrusively on the handle bar stem.  So, Anon, I hope that's okay?


  1. Hi Doug, I call myself a technophobe but I have one of these too. They are pretty harmless bits of kit and quite inoffensive.
    I had a wonderful ride up the Cuckoo trail in Sussex last week. Gorgeous weather and beautiful countryside.I felt so happy and at peace with myself that I could almost have had some kind of religious epiphany(I am an atheist) It was that good and I did not have to drink it, smoke it or inject it either!

  2. Hi H
    I always like reading your comments, many thanks again and good to know you cycle as well as run.

    All the best, Doug.