Enthusiasm about my new bike – but not my BLOG……

I admit that I may have just lost my way with my ‘Wellswheels’ site.  However I AM still feeling passionate about cycling and have recently added a new steed to the stable: The SPA Cycles ‘Audax’.

SPA Audax

My main reason for this choice was probably to be able to stay with Janet, after ‘upgrading’ her Surly to BionX power.  I found that although I am able to keep up with her on flat or downhill, I was struggling going up the steeper inclines when I had to search for the lowest gears, when she only needed to ‘turbo-boost’!

The bike is a joy to ride, I have never had anything quite as ‘sporty’ – it is NOT a racer, but a comfortable distance cruiser, not hampered by too larger carrying capacity!

Surly + BionX -worth it, to keep an old friend:


Image may contain: 1 person, bicycle, sky and outdoorGerry had been threatening for sometime to ‘electrify’ my bike: “..it will help you up the hills” – “allow you to extend your rides” he just about stopped at hinting that I could at least keep up with him.
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Janet Wells added 3 new photos.

· January 18 at 8:13pm ·


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Oh – look what Santa brought me this year: a new Bionx motor for my Surly LHT! Well at least I will not have to get used to a new bike.

For the technical amongst you, the kit is BionX’s latest D-Series System with a 48V down tube battery and the D-Series Rear Hub Motor this motor comes fitted to a special new wheel that will take 8, 9, and 10 speed cassettes – thereby allowing all the original gearing to be retained. The system is controlled via the latest G2 console which has an illuminated LCD display with battery state-of-charge, access to 4 ‘assist’ levels, 4 ‘Generate’ levels, possibility of controlling lights, and cycle computer functions of speed, odometer, clock, average speed and trip distance.

My impression of the BionX!

I have created a monster! – now equipped with her bionic, oops, Bionx motor, Janet has started to zoom past me as soon as we arrive at a hill. She leaves me struggling in her wake and when I eventually catch her at the top she sits there, as cool as a cucumber (which I hate anyway – cucumber that is) – I am puffing and sweating she just starts off again…. I HATE electric bikes, but would like to try one, at least for a while 🙂

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Thorn Adventure Tandem

The time had come to consider another tandem, our Dutch ‘DoubleDream’ had served its purpose.  That purpose was not what we planned, we thought that a foldable, comfortable, hub geared, alloy framed ‘cruiser’ bike was what we wanted – we could take our Terrier, ‘Bosun’ with us on local rides around our home, even venturing further afield by folding the machine and carrying it in our car.

What actually transpired was rather different, we got more ambitious with our rides and after Bosun decided to leave us, after twenty years! – We even took the DoubleDream on a ‘Tour’ to England.  As  touring bought an increasing demand for weighty luggage we started to have wheel problems on the already quite heavy Dutch cruiser, so we decided to go for a couple of ‘singles’ – enter  the Surly LHTs

After our major, well,. for us it was, ride from John O’Groats to Land’s End on the singles we started thinking about another tandem.  Browsing the ‘net one day I came across SJS Cycles advertising a Thorn Adventure Tandem, in a perfect size for us – as a clearance offer, as they had now completely changed to Rohloff geared machines and were perhaps finding selling an older model difficult – AND because it was a small/small size which was not in demand – except from us with hobbit legs!  There was not much hesitation and soon it was being packed up to be shipped to France!


The purpose of this page was to enlighten the technical minded of you that seem to always demand to see the technical specs:

  • Quality UK hand made frameset using Reynolds 531 tubing – built to ride the world!
  • British Racing Green
  • Fitted with a cartridge bearing road 1 1/8 inch Aheadset CH-281-8 – black
  • Transmission: Ventura 3/32 inch chain 116 links, 5/6/7speed, Shimano Alivio RD-M410 7/8 speed rear Derailleur  – Pair Thorn tandem front crankset for crossover drive length 170mm, Pair Thorn tandem triple rear crankset for crossover drive length 165mm,  24/34/50 Chainrings, 34 connecting rings, Shimano TY30 Triple Front derailleur 28.6mm, Shimano HG31-I 8 speed cassette – 11 – 32T.  Shimano Ultegra SL-6480 8 speed Bar End Shifters, Neco bottom brackets 68mm shell with Shimano splined cups,  SRAM 3/32 inch PC830 chain 114 links 7/8 speed HG compatible – grey.
  • Brakes: Tektro RL520 Aero V brake levers – black, Karasawa screw on tandem drum, Shimano Deore BR-M590 V brakes – black.
  • Wheels: Sun CRE16 26″ (559) Alloy rims – Silver – 40 Hole, Shimano Deore XT 8/9 Speed large flange rear tandem hub – 145mm OLN – 40 Hole, Shimano XT tandem front hub QR 40 hole. Panaracer Hi road amber wall rigid tyres 26 x 1,50 inch.
  • Finishing Kit: Thorn MTB Comfort Riser Bars – 25.4mm – Satin Black, MTB Kraton rubber handlebar grips – Brookes Champion Flyer and Womens S  saddles. Zoom anatomic alloy drop handlebars – 25.4 clamp – black – 440mm C>C, Adjustable stoker stem with shim alloy black, Thorn front loading alloy 1 1/8″ Ahead stem +6 Deg, satin black – 90mm, Cork Handlebar tape with cork flecks with gel backing – black.
  • Accessories: Thorn accessory bar T shaped 55mm extension 0 deg. SKS Chromoplastic 26 inch mudguards with fitting kit – black.  Thorn front and rear luggage racks..


Our Surlys

Our current favourites, are Surly Long Haul Truckers (or LHTs for short!) We have the two smallest frame sizes, with 26inch wheels – they suit us very well…
Before the off, JOGLE 2013

Excuse me for just posting the manufacturers description:

“Bicycle touring has been growing in popularity quite a bit in the last decade, and our Long Haul Trucker has been around for most of that time. Over the years it’s developed a devoted following. People understand and appreciate the LHT’s dependability and everyday riding comfort, whether they’re cruising to the store or lost in the middle of nowhere.
Why the Trucker? Simple. A touring bike’s job is to go the distance and then some while carrying you and your gear, all in relative comfort. The Long Haul Trucker was designed in all aspects to do exactly that. Its low bottom bracket and long chainstays provide comfort and stability. We gave it ample tire clearance for larger tires (larger tires soak up a lot of road static) with room for fenders too. The frame’s tubing is thicker-walled and larger-diameter than standard road and sport-touring frames, and this pre-tunes it for the weight of cargo. And it’s got all the braze-ons, from rack mounts to water bottle cage bosses to spare spoke holders. Like all our frames, it’s made of CroMoly steel. We like steel for a lot of reasons, foremost among them the ride quality a well-designed steel frame delivers. It doesn’t hurt that steel is relatively inexpensive, or that it is more easily repaired than aluminum, carbon fiber or titanium. You’ll probably never need to have the frame repaired, but if you do you’re more likely to find someone who can weld steel than someone who can weld ti or aluminum. Repair carbon fiber? Good luck with that.
Designed to be used with cantilever or linear-pull brakes, the standard Long Haul Trucker is available as a frameset and as a complete bike, with 26″ wheels in 42–62cm frame sizes, and with 700c wheels in 56–64cm. Yep, we now offer a 64cm. A well designed bike for tall folks at a production frame price ought to make a lot of folks pretty happy. We’re updating the fork too, with custom crown and dropouts. This fork has two sets of eyelets on the dropouts as well as at proper mid-blade height, and 5 x 0.8mm bosses built into the side of the crown. All this makes the fork compatible with most types of racks, and provides options how you can mount racks and carry your stuff.
The component group was chosen for its technical ability, durability, and value. This is stuff that works well on a fully loaded tourer, will last you a while, and won’t shoot holes in your wallet. You’ll add whatever you need to go where you want, like racks and fenders. Once you have that sorted, get out there and ride. And then when you get there, keep going.”