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  1. #1
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    Rolling Big Dumb Jackass

    I've been a Big Dummy for a while now, but haven't documented the same with any pics. I have now become a Big Dumb Jackass.


    dummy side

    My Dummy has a proud heritage that traces its roots to North Central Cyclery in DeKalb, Illinois. If your looking to become a Big Dummy, I highly recommend them. I would seriously pimp Tobie and the gang out there all day long. They've totally become my go-to bike crew...they stock some awesome brands, and have some truly droolworthy rides in the shop. And they keep tormenting and taunting me with a Pugsley...but that's a story for another day. Back to the Dummy.

    Mods:
    Peapod
    Different Saddle (a cheapo Serfas that is actually pretty darn comfy)
    Ergon Grips/Bar-ends
    A set of Ruben platform pedals (Originally, I had SPD compatible pedals on here. I recently bought the Rubens from NCC with another bike I bought there, and I swapped the Rubens onto the Dummy. Why? After installing the peapod, I had nightmares about failing to unclip and wiping out with my 3yo on the back. Hence, the switch to platforms).

    pedals dummy

    I have the peapod, a flight deck, the wood deck, surfboard, footsies, stoker bar, and the cargo van setup...pretty full boat.

    The bike itself is a 2010 Dummy complete...triple chainring, Schwalbe Big Apples...a set of Planet Bike fenders. The headlight shown is my 'be seen' light. I have different lighting I use for night rides when I need illumination to see...but the little Trek does a good job of flashing and catching attention.

    bars dummy

    The latest mod...and the reason for this post...is that I picked up a Rolling Jackass centerstand (shown). Val Kleitz from Rolling Jackass was very helpful, and I highly recommend the product...it rocks. Install took about 15 minutes (I'm still considering my cable routing temporary). It works totally easy. Just stop, squeeze the lever, and lift up and back on the handlebars. Even with a load on, it works well. When on the stand, she's totally stable. I'm really, really thrilled with that addition--works far better than the stock kickstand, and doesn't interfere with any other accessories (like the Xtracycle version does).

    stand closeup

    stand left

    stand right

    The next mod is going to be a Jones Loop handlebar, as I'd like some more variety in hand positions than the Torsion Bar offers. I'll probably cut the Torsion Bar down and mount it in the stoker position, to give a bit more comfortable bar for passengers (my wife occasionally rides as passenger, and has advised that the narrow bars aren't terribly comfy). Anyhow, the bike is great. I live about 5 miles from most conveniences (grocery store, hardware store, restaurants, etc.), and the Dummy has been pressed into service for many trips to town.

    Also, the switch from a bike trailer to the Peapod has been great...it's so much more comfortable, both for my daughter and for me. Bike handles better with peapod than with a trailer, too. The only bummer about the peapod is that it mounts with tools. I'm going to devise a quick attach/detach system so I can pull it off when my daughter isn't riding, but can quickly/securely attach it when she is coming along with. We do a lot of trips to the parks with her on the back.

    Overall, I love the Dummy. Wouldn't trade it for the world...and I owe my acquisition of the Dummy to North Central. I went out and ogled (and test rode) their Dummy repeatedly...until they started getting sick of me. I then popped for my very own. They also set me up with all of the Xtracycle accessories and the peapod. Truly a great shop!

  2. #2
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    $350 for a kickstand.... no thanks. And I buy dumb expensive **** all the time.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schmucker
    $350 for a kickstand.... no thanks. And I buy dumb expensive **** all the time.
    Yeah, I thought about that for a long time before making the buy. I've found that I'm much happier when I wait and buy the part/product that looks like it is the best, rather than trying a number of lesser solutions. Having an incredibly stable centerstand that holds the bike relatively level, can support a significant load, and is easy to engage/disengage became far more important to me after adding the Peapod. Prior to that, I used the kickstand and/or tipped the bike over on the wideloaders.

    I tested two other centerstands before getting this one (the Xtracycle version and an aftermarket version), and didn't like them nearly as well. I know it's kind of lame, but with my daughter on the back, I really like that I can engage the centerstand while still straddling the bike--I have maximum control. Otherwise, you have to get off the bike while holding it steady with her hanging on the back, and then try to put a stand down with one foot while still balancing the bike and child. It may seem like a small issue, but there is a significant measure of comfort/safety I have in this design.

    And frankly, when was bike accessorizing about pure economic sense, anyhow?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by lawfarm
    Having an incredibly stable centerstand that holds the bike relatively level, can support a significant load, and is easy to engage/disengage became far more important to me after adding the Peapod.
    I would say prevent the kiddos from cracking their heads and becoming dummies too is worth The $350.

    Nice ride!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schmucker
    $350 for a kickstand.... no thanks. And I buy dumb expensive **** all the time.

    I have a couple milk crates full of less expensive parts that almost worked. I've come to realize that I can't afford anything but the best so $350 for something that works is not bad.

  6. #6
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    Awesome!!! Cargo bikes are meant to be modded for special purposes. The purpose is up to you.

    fc

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schmucker
    $350 for a kickstand.... no thanks. And I buy dumb expensive **** all the time.
    Val's stand is well worth the price given the functionality and the cost of making them a few at a time in the US. We are so used to the low cost of mass produced cheap average quality parts that the comparison seems shocking. Not everybody wants or needs a high quality centrestand, but if you do Val makes a great one.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb
    Val's stand is well worth the price given the functionality and the cost of making them a few at a time in the US. We are so used to the low cost of mass produced cheap average quality parts that the comparison seems shocking. Not everybody wants or needs a high quality centrestand, but if you do Val makes a great one.

    Interesting. So that stand is remote actuated? Is there a video of it working? Is it more stable than the normal stand?

    I am glad is is working out for you so it is a good purchase.

    But it does look pretty raw with the straps, electric tape and mismatched colors and third brake lever. $350 is a lot

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by francois
    Interesting. So that stand is remote actuated? Is there a video of it working? Is it more stable than the normal stand?

    I am glad is is working out for you so it is a good purchase.

    But it does look pretty raw with the straps, electric tape and mismatched colors and third brake lever. $350 is a lot

    The stand is remotely activated, through use of the third brake lever. You squeeze the lever while pulling back on the handlebars, and she pops right up on the stand. I'm not certain that it is more stable than the xtracycle stand, but it is at least as stable as the xtracycle stand.

    Regarding the rawness, some of that is me and some of that is the product. The 'electric tape' is actually a self-healing sealant tape that I'm using to protect the Dummy frame. The straps and mounting bracket are from the kit, but function perfectly. Regarding mismatched colors, I'm not certain what you're referencing. The unfinished aluminum? The black legs? The stand does come in different colors (and I could have ordered green, presumably to match), but I wanted the black--personal preference. The cable routing immediately next to the stand is a bit hacked right now (I'm not happy with it), but the third brake lever actually works really well and is, in my opinion, an elegant solution to activating the stand (and one that can be easily serviced/replaced using commonly available parts should that ever prove necessary). Is it pretty? No. But it is very functional, and I think it is functionally elegant...which befits my Dummy.

    I'm not aware of a video showing it working.

  10. #10
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    On a separate note...for some reason, I can't get over the thought of adding a front rack. It's not like I've ever run out of storage room on my Big Dumm exploits thus far, but I think the bike really needs a front rack. Maybe something compact like Devo or Vik use...or maybe a Civia, like this:

    Surly Big Dummy With Civia Market Front Rack (Part 1 of 6)

  11. #11
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    It seems that there are a few questions I could answer, to wit: the Rolling Jackass stand is wider than the Kickback stand, and has bigger feet. It is therefore more stable, and less prone to sinking into soft surfaces. Two very short videos will be found here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/2910028...7612777425978/ (not very terrific, I know, but hopefully they convey the concept). As far as the aesthetics of actuation go, I realize that brake levers are, indeed, hideously ugly, but I figured that as most handlebars have two of them mounted already, one more wouldn't make them much worse looking. The "Venti Moron Green" color does match the original Surly color, as it is the exact same catalog number in the powdercoat spectrum (I asked Surly, and they kindly told me). Cheers!

  12. #12
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    Love the bike, great centerstand too and I agree about NCC being a great shop

    Quote Originally Posted by Val Kleitz
    ...brake levers are, indeed, hideously ugly, but I figured that as most handlebars have two of them mounted already, one more wouldn't make them much worse looking....
    Have you considered a friction thumb shifter? There's a low cost one on the market by Falcon:
    http://www.universalcycles.com/shopp...9&category=163

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by pursuiter
    Love the bike, great centerstand too and I agree about NCC being a great shop



    Have you considered a friction thumb shifter? There's a low cost one on the market by Falcon:
    http://www.universalcycles.com/shopp...9&category=163

    I think the amount of force that needs to be generated to make the stand work means that a shifter simply wouldn't cut the mustard. The brake lever really does work well.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Val Kleitz
    It seems that there are a few questions I could answer, to wit: the Rolling Jackass stand is wider than the Kickback stand, and has bigger feet. It is therefore more stable, and less prone to sinking into soft surfaces. Two very short videos will be found here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/2910028...7612777425978/ (not very terrific, I know, but hopefully they convey the concept). As far as the aesthetics of actuation go, I realize that brake levers are, indeed, hideously ugly, but I figured that as most handlebars have two of them mounted already, one more wouldn't make them much worse looking. The "Venti Moron Green" color does match the original Surly color, as it is the exact same catalog number in the powdercoat spectrum (I asked Surly, and they kindly told me). Cheers!

    Good info. Thanks for posting.

    I'll post a couple of options to possibly replace the third brake lever in the future. I worked with a couple dropping post manufacturers in the past that initially used a third brake lever to activate their posts.

    How much force is required? The stand is spring loaded right and the lever is just releasing the stand down?

    fc

  15. #15
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    I'll post a couple of options to possibly replace the third brake lever in the future
    Could you post some options to allow us to actuate brakes without those horrible levers? Once we get that taken care of, maybe we could figure out how to do the same for the shifting system, so we don't have to look at ugly shifters anymore...

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Val Kleitz
    Could you post some options to allow us to actuate brakes without those horrible levers? Once we get that taken care of, maybe we could figure out how to do the same for the shifting system, so we don't have to look at ugly shifters anymore...
    good one ace!

    fc

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Val Kleitz
    Could you post some options to allow us to actuate brakes without those horrible levers? Once we get that taken care of, maybe we could figure out how to do the same for the shifting system, so we don't have to look at ugly shifters anymore...
    Not sure about brakes, but Shimano's electronic shifting system should be pretty easy to mod so you only have buttons to shift up/down. How long 'till there's an electronic XTR groupset???

    (and hydro drop bar brake levers please)

  18. #18
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    kickstand lever

    Quote Originally Posted by francois
    Good info. Thanks for posting.

    I'll post a couple of options to possibly replace the third brake lever in the future. I worked with a couple dropping post manufacturers in the past that initially used a third brake lever to activate their posts.

    How much force is required? The stand is spring loaded right and the lever is just releasing the stand down?

    fc
    Very little force is required. It's very easy just to press the lever and shift the bike back slightly to set the stand. I'm so glad I have this stand. I've replaced my Xtracycle stand with this RJ Stand. Although the Xtracycle stand was OK, the peace of mind and solidity of this stand makes all the difference with real cargo, which is, after all, what cargo biking is about.

  19. #19
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    I feel the draw of the front rack too. Not sure if it is just the coolness of the porteur, or maybe a shared dummy ethos that "more is more"
    I think I'd like a med/small rack but with the rohloff and jbars the area in front of my handlebars is a mess with cables. I may just hold off until I learn to weld more, diy would be grant.

    Quote Originally Posted by lawfarm
    On a separate note...for some reason, I can't get over the thought of adding a front rack. It's not like I've ever run out of storage room on my Big Dumm exploits thus far, but I think the bike really needs a front rack. Maybe something compact like Devo or Vik use...or maybe a Civia, like this:

  20. #20
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    Lawfarm I see you carry your wide loaders on board. I do too. Can't use em if ain't got em...

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    I have since installed a front rack (Civia), and I swapped out the Torsion Bar for a Jones Loop bar. Both were good improvements...although the rack made a definite change in bike handling. Even stripped down, with the rack on, the Dummy feels much heavier, due to the heft in the steering.

    The Loop bar was a great addition, and I highly recommend it...

    And yes, I carry the wideloaders...they're light, and they're very handy to have when you need them. Especially with the Peapod on...the peapod 'feet' hang down and interfere with cargo loading, which necessitates the wideloaders more often than otherwise would be necessary.

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    How did you like the change of the grip angle from the torsion bar to the loop bar. I have a loop bar but have never mounted it. The angle at which the grips would turn inward on the loop bar looks like they would be uncomfortable. How much did it change your upright riding position ? By the time I waited for the loop bar order to come into Jones and then shipped I had gotten used to the torsion bar.

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    I was uncertain about it at first...but I've come to love it. I still run my Ergon moose grip/moose antler combination, and the loop gives me a ton of hand positions. For upright cruising, the outside position on the loop bar is perfect. It's also perfect for cranking up a hill out of the saddle. On those rare occasions where you're looking for a more aero position, the middle positions on the loop bar are handy. They're also very handy when you just need a new riding position. The angle of the outside grips on the loop bar is actually why I picked it...I've found it far superior to the straighter angle on the torsion bar, and very comfortable.

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    I finally mounted my loop bar and you were right on with them. Both hands in the middle gives me the tuck I needed for those heavy head winds. Also the regular grip position is great...

  25. #25
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    Great looking bike! How do you like the peapod? I will be switching my daughter out of our iBert into one of those probably this summer. I'm not sure how my little lady will transition from the front of the bike to the back, she might not be too jazzed about it. It looks like from your pictures though, it can be moved back a little farther to give more of a view?

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