Thursday 27 February 2014

A bit of gravel

Cycling back from the center of London out to Leyton last night afteer the day's caching, I found that I couldn't get into a gear lower than fourth. That makes it harder to cycle at high speed, of course. However, it didn't occur to me to have a look to see what the problem was, I was expecting something that I'd only be able to fix with the tools I had at home.

When I looked at it today, I saw that the problem was that a lump of gravel had got caught inside the derailleur, A bit of wiggling with a small screwdriver and long nose pliers, and it was out, and the gears now work fine!

I was very impressed yesterday with how bike-friendly London has become, Going in from the East, I found myself on "Cycle Superhighway 2" which goes from Stratford to Aldgate. And it really is very nice.

Most cycleways are just line painted on the road, and cars still whizz path leaving you inches of clearance. And cars park on them, so you have to get out into the main traffic. Or you can go on bus lanes; then the cars and lorries are banished, but the taxis are lethal, and you keep encountering stopped buses, so you have to get out into the main traffic.

But on "Cycle Superhighway 2" most of the route is on a separate cycleway, that cars, buses and taxis can't get on to, because they'd have to go over a kerb. I felt *really* safe on those. And where you don't have the seperate cycleway, at least you have a lane that's continuous, painted blue, and of a decent width. Vote for Boris!

As I was going back at night, going east out of London, quite a large flock of bikes were going the same way. That also makes me feel safer; a car is less likely to do something silly when there's a bunch of us, and it also means that people who drive in London are actually expecting bikes. So yes, I have heard about some cyclists being injured or killed, but the thing to avoid is overtaking large vehicles on the inside, because they can't see you, you shouldn't be there, and if they're turning left, you aren't expecting it and can't get out of the way.

Wednesday 26 February 2014

A day in London

Today was a bit of an experiment. It's a weekday, and I went caching in London.

The obvious problem is parking. I solved that by driving to Leyton and parking there; easy parking, no restrictions. I loaded the bike up with seven batteries, (of which I used five) and set off.

I went all the way in, via Hackney, Bow and Mile End (all my old stamping grounds) to Hyde Park, where I once again failed to complete Alien Invasion. One day ...

25 caches done today in a run of about 40 kilometers. Here's some interesting things I saw today.

Tuesday 25 February 2014


I took bike.3 out for another test, this time giving it 50 volts. As soon as I powered it up, the voltmeter stopped working; I think it's died. Not a big problem, those little votmeters only cost about £1.50. IThe bike went very nicely at level I (50%), then I switched it up to level II and ... sput.

The motor pretty much stopped working, it would growl a bit, but no real power. So I pedalled home, hoping that I hadn't broken something important.

I have an e-bike tester, it's a nice little gadget, cost about $10. It'll test motor windings, motor Halls, controller power output, controller Hall control and throttle (which for some reason it calls "steering"). So I disconnected the controller from the motor, and tested the motor. Two of the three windings worked, the third (the yellow one) didn't. That's looking bad. But before I thought about opening up the motor, I thought I'd check the connections to the motor, and when I unpeeled the insulating tape, the yellow connection looked very ropey. I'd used small plastic connectors, probably rated at 6 amps, and I think that with the new higher current, they just weren't up to the job. So I cut away the bad bit, and made a new connection, this time using 30 amp connectors. I connected up the bike, and bingo! It works.

I'm going to London again tomorrow. I'm planning to go round the M25 and down the M11, I'll park at Forest Gate, near the cemetary (I like parking near cemetaries, there's usually good parking there), and then I'll take the bike in to the City from there. I'm hoping to go all the way in, because I want to have another go at London Invasion. I've tried three times so far, but now I have a very different theory of where the final is.

Monday 24 February 2014

Bike.3 test

I finished installing the new controller in bike.3. It uses IRFB4110 Mosfets, those are semiconductor devices for switching large currents. It has a very nice feature; there's a three-way switch mounted on the handlebars that let's you change the amount of power you use. I programmed it to have 50%, 75% and 100% of power. I took the bike out for a test run today, and it's great!

At 50% power, it's fairly ordinary, the top speed on the flat (no pedalling) is 17 kph (that's about 11 mph). At 75%  power, I feel the boost, and it's giving me 22 or 24 kph. And when I switch it up to 100%, it really zips along; on the flat I got about 30 kph. This power setting is for off-road use, because when I'm caching, speed isn't important, because I'm stopping every few hundred yards anyway. But power is; riding on a poor track takes a lot more effort.

While I was out, I was surprised to notice that the left hand brake was the front brake, and the right hand was the rear. Oops! I must have got the cables mixed up. So I sorted that out.

When I looked at my wattmeter after the test ride, I found that the maximum power draw was 48 amps! The controller is limited to 25 amps, so I'm thinking that this must have been a momentary draw.

I also found that the bike doesn't like starting from stationary on a steep hill. Well, who does? But the problem here, is that this is a sensorless motor (no Hall effect sensors). That means that the controller doesn't get the benefit of knowing where the motor is until it's actually started to move. So you can see that starting up on a steep hill is going to be bad news. Fortunately, I don't often need to do that; it happened on my test ride because I stopped half way up the steep hill at the bottom of my road, just to see how starting up would be.

Another interesting thing - it doesn't like being given wide open throttle at low speed. It's OK once the speed is up, but WOT at low speed leads to many complaining sounds from the motor.

So, overall, I'm very pleased with the result.

Sunday 23 February 2014

A flurry of shopping

You have to love the internet. Today I bought ...

From Hobbyking:

1) a meter to measure the internal resistance of batteries. That tells you about the quality of the battery, they deteriorate with time. As do we all.
2) Two more things that beep when a battery is depleted, telling me it's time to change battery
3) a dozen XT150 connectors, in case they're better for bike use than the XT60 or XT90

From Dealextreme:

1) An electric shaver, because the one I got from them before is *so good* and I want a spare.
2) 3 nine volt batteries, for use in smoke alarms
3) 5 travel adaptors because so many of the things I get don't come with UK plugs
4) A reel of solder; the one I got a while back has been very good, and it's best not to run out. It takes a few weeks for things to arrive from China.
5) Heat shrink tubing, because it makes my joints look so neat, by covering up the joint.
6) A pack of small 12v batteries, used for powering various things, I'm nearly run out

From Ebay, where I *really* went shopping-mad:

1) 12 XT150 connectors.
2) 3 smoke alarms. At £2.50 each, they're really cheap, and I'll put them in the computer room, one above each rack of computers, and one near to where I keep the bike batteries
3) Two reels of 26 AWG wire, one red and one black, for wiring up things that don't carry much current
4) 20 sheets of emery paper, I'm on my last sheet now.
5) 12 hacksaw blades. The one in my hacksaw is blunt.
6) A tin lunch box shaped like an ammo can. I calculate that it will take three of my bike batteries
7) A heavy-duty plastic lunch box, top opening.I calculate that it will take four of my bike batteries. This means that when I go out "fully loaded", I don't carry all the heavy batteries in one pannier, I can split them to either side.
8) A digital voltmeter that can go up to 100 volts. I'm planning to run bike.3 on 66 volts.
9) A pair of small bike lights, front and rear. I only want the rear, but I get both for 99p. When it's night and I'm on a road, I'm very keen that people can see me.
10) A PDA holder. I'm nearly out of spares (I break them from time to time, I've never found one that's robust). When it arrives, if I like it, I get a few more.
11) A set of five silicone elastic straps. They seem to be useful for all sorts of things, like a very thich and tough rubber band. I'll carry them in my emergency kit.
12) Half a kilogram of E45 cream. I'm getting "bumps on the skin" quite often, and E45 soothes it.
13) A pair of Altura panniers. There were on a "buy it now" of £20, and I think they're worth twice that. That's the same kind that I use, and mine are beginning to get rather ragged from all the abuse they've had.
14) Two 10 watt 220 ohm resistors. That's so that I can preload the bike controller. When I plug the batteries in and switch on, a large surge of current goes to charge up the controller capacitors, and that means arcing on the contacts.  What I'll do, is when I plug the batteries in, the resistor will bypass the switch, so that the capacitors can chrage up, but at a small current. Then when they're fully charged (a few seconds) I can switch the main switch on.
15) A "helping hands" with two crocodile clips and a magnifying glass. In soldering up connections, I've sometimes wished I had a third hand. One for the soldering iron, one for the solder and one to hold the wire I'm soldering in place.
16) A tool for removing the gears and freewheel from the rear wheel of a bike
17) 10 connectors for 12 volt lamps
18) 12 lamps, 12 volts and 30 watts. I've put all that together onto a wood board, and that gives me a load that I can run a battery to.

Where have the sparrows gone?

I had lunch yesterday in a small patch of green. As I sat down to eat my sandwich, a few dozen pigeons strutted around, eyeing me hopefully. And I thought, where are the sparrows?

Fifty years ago, in the same situation, you would have seen several dozen sparrows, and a few pigeons. Today, not a single sparrow.

So I consulted Google.

In Kensington Gardens, they've been counting birds.

1925    2603 sparrows
1948    885
1975    544
1995    81
2000    8

So it isn't just my impression, there has been a catastrophic decline in the London sparrow population.

More Googling, revealed that no-one knows why this has happened. Furthermore, no-one, except birders, seem to be at all concerned.

I'm concerned. The cockney sparrow, is part of my heritage; I'm a cockney, born within the sound of Bow Bells, and when I'm relating a story, I often drop into the cockney way of speaking (which isn't merely rhyming slang). And if the cockney sparrow is brown bread, I'm gutted.

Saturday 22 February 2014

Passage to Pimlico

I've been nursing a cold for the last couple of weeks, but today the weather looked good, my cold was in remission, and I decided to redo the trip to London that got aborted two weeks ago because the bike was playing up.

So I went to West Hampstead cemetary; I thought there would be easy parking there, and I was right. I got the bike out, and loaded up with seven 5AH batteries - as it turn out, I only used four.

I rode south. I picked up the Abbey Road webcam cache; I've tried it before, but now there's an app and that makes it a lot easier. I continued south, and picked up "No 9 Routemaster Bus", which I did using desk research. I wound up at Pimlico.

Then I finished off "Walk around the park"; I already had most of the numbers from previous visits, and today I polished it off.

Then I tackled "London Invasion" for the third time, and I failed yet again.

But when I went to investigate one of the possible locations, I went down the long flight of steps by the Duke of York statue, and the stress of bumping down, broke one of the attachments on my pannier - the pannier that was carrying about 15 pounds of battery. So I bodged a make-do, and dfecided to head for home. On the way back, I picked up the cache in Park Lane that's been bothering me for a while.

The bike performed marvellously; the only problems were the broken pannier (I've ordered a replacement) and I cracked my pda holder when the bike fell over (without me on board).

So, 36 caches done, and a very good day out.

Tuesday 18 February 2014

An attempt at fraud, part 3

Some more attempts.

1. An attempt to take out a credit card with M&S in ladysolly's name. That's been squashed.

2. An attempt to get a debit card with Santander. That's been intercepted. But I'm thinking that this means that an account has been opened with Santander using my name, so I'll have to call them and find out what's what.

3. An attempt to do online banking with Santander. Also intercepted.

I do find it quite surprising that the banks are so eager to open accounts and send out credit cards, that they'll accept commonly available information (a name,  a phone number and an address) as sufficient to issue accounts.

Or maybe I shouldn't find it so surprising. In all my dealings with banks, they've shown a woeful lack of security sense.

Drive harness for the bike

To drive the bike, I need 24 volts, or a bit more. But the batteries I'm using are 14.4 volts nominal (16.8 when fully charged). Here's how I deal with this, and at the same time solve a couple of other problems.

On the left you can see the two XT60 male plugs, that plug into XT60 females that are on each of the 14.4 volt batteries. The wiring puts them in series (giving 28.8 volts nominal). That then goes to a fuse - it's a car-type fuse (cost about £1) that should blow at 40 amps, and the maximum current I've seen being taken by the bike is 30 amps.

The fuse is the black item that you can see above. It's easy to access in case I need to change the fuse, and I carry a couple of spare fuses. That fuse then goes to a contact breaker - these are the same ones that are used in domestic electric wiring; this one is rated at 63 amps. It's another fail-safe (in addition to the fuse) but it also functions as an on-off switch, because I'm thinking that these breakers are built to cope with 240 volts, 63 amps, and I'm giving it 33 volts at most, and 30 amps. You can see the switch in the picture above. It cost me about £3 on Ebay, which I feel is cheap for a switch that is also a safeguard against short circuit.

Back view below. Fuse on top, then contact breaker, then the blue thing.

The blue thing is a wattmeter. It tells me the voltage of the battery-pair, the current and the power in watts. It also shows me the peak amps, which is why I know that the most current that the motor takes is 33 amps (and the peak watts, watts = volts X amps). And it tells me watt-hours (how much power has been pulled from the batteries since the start) and, very usefully, amp-hours.

The batteries I use are rated as 5 amp-hours. In practice, I seem to be getting 4.5 amp-hours. The difference will be partly measurement error, partly that I don't run the batteries down to the absolute minimum (because that's bad for their long-term life) and partly I think it reflects the fact that in this world, you usually get what you pay for, only perhaps a little less. I'm happy with 4.5. The important thing is to see how that changes over time, because batteries gradually lose their capacity, and when it's down to, say, 3  amp-hours, that's probably time to replace the batteries.

Your GP records

Soon (probably March 2014), copies of your medical records will be sent from your GP, to a centralised database. This was announced via a junk-mail mailing entitled "Better information means better care".

I don't remember seeing this. Do you?

It explains that you can opt-out of the scheme. If you don't opt-out, then you're included. And once you're included, you can't opt-out later.

The scheme is explained here

The thing that immediately struck me, is that with the current system, my patient data is held by my GP. With this proposed system, it will also be held by a private company. I don't know what they'll be doing with it (selling it, I guess), but I'm guessing that it will be held in electronic form, and will be as secure against being stolen as they can make it. And then I think about all the huge data breaches that we've seen; millions of credit card numbers, for example.

So I'm opting out.

Update ... they're delaying this for six months. Maybe Dave reads this blog.

Monday 17 February 2014

An attempt at fraud, part 2

The same thing again. Someone filled in an online form for a credit card. The first I knew of it, was when an unrequested card arrived.

I called the card company, and we were soon able to determine that the fraudster had given my correct name, address and phone number (all of which is public information), but they invented an email address, and made a wrong guess about how long we've lived at this address.

So we've cancelled that card.

Also, the card from the previous fraud attempt arrived, but that's already cancelled.

I checked my credit rating at Experian. Apparently, the only flaw in my credit score is that I've never closed an account. Otherwise, my score is "excellent". More importantly, I was able to see the result of the first fraudulent attempt - I now have a CIFAS entry that mentions the impersonation attempt. In future, I would hope that any company asked to issue a credit card to my name, will check CIFAS and see this. So I doubt if there will be any more for me to do here.

In order to progress the fraud, the fraudster would have had to grab the post before we could get it. To do that, he'd have to put his hand in our post box. But the post box is locked, so that's not going to work.

Overall, this has been a very minor issue. The banks would be bearing any loss anyway, so their reckless issuance of credit cards is at their own risk. I'm still a bit surprised, however, that they're willing to take such a risk. Aren't banks supposed to be risk-averse?

I also found some information about the PCI DSS scheme.  That's the scheme that everyone processing card data has to comply with, and I can tell you, it's a right pain in the arse. I got involved a few years back, when I had to be compliant.

Verizon did a survey on compliance. I have no idea why Verizon (a telecoms company) would do that. But they found that only 11% of the companies they surveyed were compliant.

Apparently, 80% of companies are "mostly complient", which is like saying that the bucket you carry water in, has only a few holes.

I'm baffled. My understanding was that I wouldn't be allowed to accept credit cards unless I was PCI DSS compliant. Clearly, that isn't true.

11% compliance!

As an example, one of the twelve requirements is "have a firewall".  64% of companies are compliant. Which means that more than a third don't have a firewall protecting the systems that store credit card data. And yet the card industry allows this to continue.

If the credit card companies take credit card security so lightly that they allow 89% of companies not to meet their security standards, it's no surprise that they'll post out new credit cards at the drop of a hat.

Thursday 13 February 2014

Torque arm

I'm still recovering from this Lurgi, all snuffles and sore throat. I've upped my medication to include honey, lemon and brandy, and it's slowly winning the battle.

I bought a torque arm to go on bike.3. A torque arm transmits the rotational force (torque) from the hub motor to the bike frame. Without a torque arm, you're relying on the front fork cut-outs to hold the motor, and they aren't designed for it, they're designed for a front wheel that just turns freely. The possible downside is that the torque from the motor distorts or cracks the front forks. the worst case is that you're whooshing along at 15 mph, then suddenly you don't actually have a front wheel. You can imagine the pain.

The torque arm that I bought, won't slide over the flats on the axle. I thought about filing it a bit, but I got an idea from a discussion group. A spanner.

So I fitted a 10 mm spanner over the axle flats, and jubilee-clipped that to the front fork. Here's a picture;

Wednesday 12 February 2014

Tire pressure

These just arrived, via Ebay:

You put one on each tire, replacing the dust cap. This one is set for 36psi (2.4 bar). It shows green when the pressure is above that value, yellow when it's 0 to 10% below, and red when it's even less than that.

I've put two on the bike, I'll see how they go.

Sniff sniff

I've got the Lurgi. Or maybe a cold. Or inflluenza. I haven't gone to the doctor, it would be a few weeks before he could see me, and then he'd tell me to keep warm and drink lots of water.

I'm self-medicating with Strepsils, Lockets and honey-and-lemon, keeping warm and not going out and getting wet.

An attempt at fraud

Someone applied for a credit card online, with Santander Cards. They gave my name and address, and a phone number that wasn't mine, and an email address that wasn't mine. They gave my correct birth date.

Given all that, Santander sent out a credit card, to my address. I was quite surprised; it isn't exactly difficult to get my name and address (phone book, voter registration). And I don't know where they'd have got my birth date, but that's never been a big secret (however, I've just changed my birth date on Facebook to 01/01/1905).

I know about this because Santander smelled a rat (they didn't tell me how, of course, but I suspect the same fraudster applied for cards in other names at the same time) and I got a phone call from them, asking me if I'd just applied for a credit card. I told them that I hadn't.

The card is already in the post to me; the fraudster presumably has some plan to either use it on the internet (it's fairly easy to guess the expiry date, it's usually two years, but if that doesn't work, you could try other dates) and a lot of web sites don't require the security number on the signature strip. The Santander people didn't know this, and thought that the plan would be to intercept the card in the post. Which I feel is less likely than my idea. But hey, they're the great security experts, who am I to disagree?

Santander have already blocked the card, and put a note on my credit file advising of the attempted fraud, warning other banks to be careful about granting credit on such a flimsy evidence of identity. That should show up in a few days.

But I don't see why the fraudster would have applied for just one credit card. I'd guess that other companies will have had a similar application. So now I have to look at my credit reference.

Because it isn't just credit card companies that give credit. There's also phone companies, for example.

Sunday 9 February 2014

Failure at Golders Green

I had a great day planned. I was going to park near Golders Park, do a nearby cache, zoom up to Golders Green for the multi there, then cycle down to London and commit mayhem amongst many caches there.

It started off badly. I parked, got the bike out, loaded up two saddlebags with batteries, food, tools, and all the other supplies I might need for a full day in London, and cycled to Golders Park, where I totally failed to find the first cache.

After I gave up on that, I went to Golders Green. I'd already worked out where the final for the multi would be, so I went straight there, and there it was.

And then the bike started to play up.

It's either the motor, or (more likely) the controller. It would go for a few yards, then the motor would refuse to turn; the effect was as if the brakes had been put on, hard. I tried it a few times, I rebooted the controller, but eventually I decided to bike back to the car and open up the wiring, maybe water had got in, or there was a loose connection? Neither of those, and it just continued to misbehave.

And if I tried to use it with the motor switched off, I was getting a lot of drag on the motor wheel. So, no chance to use it as a non-electric bike.

So I went home.

I now have a fan heater on the motor, and another on the controller; maybe water has got inside? When I was out last week, I went through a very deep body of water, about a yard deep. I held the motor out of the water, but maybe not well enough? I don't see how I could open up the motor, and opening up the controller will be my next resort.

Meanwhile, I've gone to a web site I know and I've ordered a new controller. I ought to have a spare anyway, even if this one is OK.

 ... update ...

No water in the wiring. So I got a couple of fan heaters, pointed one at the motor and the other at the controller, and left them.


One heater is 2000 watts, the other is 3000, so that's 8 and 12 amps amps. The pair were drawing 20 amps from a 13 amp circuit. I had them on a long, coiled extension. The extension got hot ... very hot ... and blew a circuit breaker. That cut power to a dozen computers, and it was at that point that I discovered that I'd totally unbalanced my PSUs, so that one was doing almost nothing, and the other was doing almost everything. So the PSU ran down before I knew what had happened, and a dozen computers went down.

I rebalanced the PSUs, and got the computers back up again (which is quite a long process after an uncontrolled shutdown like that). Eventually, I had all the computers up and running.

So, what about the bike? The motor ran fine. So I took the bike out for a longish run, and it was still OK. My conclusion is that there's water in the controller, and the heat has gotten it out. I'm applying more heat (but not at full blast, only one heater, and not via a long coil of extension). I've sealed up the wiring again - I'm using an old plastic oil can, and then duct tape to seal it all in.

Next weekend, weather permitting, I'll try that London excursion again.

... update ...

The long coiled extension is dead. I examined it, a lot of the insulation has melted, and it's now dangerous to use as an extension. I've taped up the sockets, so it won't get used by accident. The reason I haven't thrown it away, is that most of the cable is salvageable, all I have to do is not use the melted bits.

So then I plugged the second fan heater into another socket, but now each of them is inline with an adapter that tells me how close to the 13 amp maximum they are (one is 4, the other is 6 amps). So that should be safe. I really shouldn't make stupid mistakes like that!

After the heating/drying process had been going for a while, I thought it would be a good idea to see if the motor was still running. I've been charging up the battery that I used for testing before, so I just switched the battery main power outlet to the harness that puts two batteries in series.

The balance leads immediately started to emit thick smoke. Uh-oh. What I'd forgotten, is that connecting the two batteries like that in series, while they're still connected in parallel via the balance leads, is going to send huge currents (probably more than 100 amps, although I didn't actually try to measure it) through the balance leads. I disconnected as fast as I could, but the parallel balance lead is now kaput. It joins the long coiled extension in my trail of destruction today.

Lesson learned. If I'd thought about it before I made the connection, I'd have worked it out. Probably. But for sure, that's a mistake I won't make again.

Thursday 6 February 2014

Rainy days

It's been raining a lot recently, so I've been cooped up indoors. But I've worked out that if I go caching in London, it'll be mostly on tarmac, so I shouldn't get too muddy. So I've been looking at puzzles there.

I also tested the bike with the boosted voltage, and yes, I do get more torque. That's a nice thought!

I tried out the Deans connectors; it takes too much pull to separate them. But the XT60s look more likely; I've started doing some wiring using those, and they connect and separate without too much force.  What I might do, is use them for all connectors except for the final connection to the bike, which I'll leave as a kettle, because I do need it to be pretty easy to disconnect the batteries, so that I can remove them from the bike before lifting it over an obstacle.

I also bought another battery charger. I already had two; my idea was to use one for fully discharged batteries, and the other for partials. But I'm getting through 4 and a bit batteries per day, So in future, I'll out two on each charger, and the partially used one of a third. I'd be nervous about putting a partially dischaged battery in parallel with a fully discharged one, because the voltage difference would drive a huge current through the wires.

Saturday 1 February 2014

Soaked again

To Cambridgeshire today, near Yaxley. It was a lovely sunny day, perfect for caching. Except for the water. When I parked at my starting point, this is what I saw:

Oho, thought I, I'll box clever. Instead of wearing my waterproof boots (but if the water is more than ankle deep, it fills my boots) I'll wear wellies. My wellies are almost knee high, so I was sure to stay dry today!

Soon I was enjoying great views of the Morborne transmitter.

For reasons I'm sure you'll understand, that always makes me think of this tune

So first I did "Haddon and back", which turned out to be 26 caches. A lot of the ground was very soggy, which made cycling difficult.

I got back to the car dry-foot at about 2pm, and had lunch while I warmed up a bit. Then I swapped the two used bike batteries for two fresh ones, and set off on the "Chesterton and back" circuit. More soggy bridleway, much effort required, but the batteries were doing a good share of the work.

And then I realised why my front wheel was wobbling so much; the spokes were totally loose, in dire need of tightening. So I stopped for a while, got out my multitool, and gave the spokes a bit of a tightening; just enough to keep me going. I'll do it properly at home, using my bike stand and spoke spanner

Then I reached the A605 underpass, and this is what I saw.

Of course, you can't tell from that how deep it's going to be, maybe it's an inch or so? Maybe. Maybe not.

No. It got deeper and deeper. Deeper than my wellies, at which point I got two bootfuls of water. And I had to lift up the front wheel of the bike, because I didn't want to get water in the electric motor. But the back end had to take its chance, I can't schlep 52 pounds of bike plus 12 pounds of battery, and so my panniers got really wet, which means that the batteries got wet. But I wasn't too bothered, they're waterproof. I hope.

The picture above was taken after I'd gone through. As you can see, the water came about a yard up my legs.

And here's a shot taken after I got through.

You can see where the steel railings are a couple of feet under water.

Fortunately, I'd planned this so that by now, I was near the end ouf the circuit, so I just had to squelch back to the car. The bike still worked, I'm glad to say.

I finished with "Yaxley Yabadabadoo" number one, a cache that I've failed on twice before now. This time, I found it immediately!

A great (although wet) day out, 61 cacnes found, no DNFs.