Bicycling and music come together
In this picture of my mountain bike I have just returned from the Randonnee ride in Lafayette, you will notice I have a small Topeak bike rack with it's integrated cooler system, which most people (including myself at times) use to carry drinks or other refreshments... My choice being tasty adult beverages (AKA BEER). What you can't tell from this picture is that thanks to some older battery powered computer speakers (thank you Kent) and some sort of music playing device "SECURELY FASTENED" I will be able to listen to music while riding. I started off in 1999 with a cheap walkman tape player, this is where I found out how important securily fastened equipment is... as you can see from the picture below, the walkman was actually discharged from the bike multiple times, the final time actually getting run over by a passing car.
For the 2000 Randonnee I used Tom's Sony CD player with ESP which worked quite nicely.
And today I have further upgraded to a Hango PJB-100 MP3 Player with a 40 Gig Harddrive upgrade which I easily did with the help of a few of my brothers tools.
This system, since it hooks directly onto the seat post can be transferred very easily from bike to bike. I've used it on both Mountain Bike and Road bikes, along with trashed out Burningman bikes (but that's another story).....
Then times changed, after 2001 I had made my 4th trip out to Burningman and was turned onto the whole Breakz scene... Now granted I had thought I had heard a lot about the break beat scene but nothing grabbed me like the music of Burningman that year. After returning home I was downloading and buying music like crazy, some of my favorite tracks were from one of our neighbors/campmates at Burningman Lorin from Bassnectar Labs
I realized that this new music I was collecting just didn't have the same drive I was used to while riding my bike... It sounded great at home, but it didn't take long to determine that the small battery powered computer speakers just weren't up to the challenge of the hard driving bass required, no I must say DEMANDED by this music.
So I began planning.....
2002 Bigger Sound
I knew I wanted bigger sound (i.e. Bass) so I was certain I was going to have to think radically to achieve this. I started with an old 100 Watt car Amp I had previously used for a sub woofer in my trunk, attached the above mentioned MP3 player via RCA connectors. For output I decided on a set of Bose Satellite speakers I had in my spare/guest/too drunk to drive bedroom. These speakers not only provided bass but also allowed me to place the tweeters wherever I wanted providing better sound. After some rough calculations on what 100 Watt amp was going top draw, I decided on a 35 Amp deep Cell battery.
Now the big decision was how do you attach this to a bicycle, I started off borrowing Kent's bike trailer which is used to haul kids. I was nervous about the weight of the battery and other equipment ripping the cloth, so I opted for the Yakima Big Tow. This trailer handles really nicely with the single wheel. And the end result is....
The official test ride was the Randonnee 2002, which ended up being about 50 miles and I'd say 4 to 4 1/2 hours of play time.
It sounded great but the weight of this contraption is questionable.... I wish I would have done this in 1998 when I was in shape and riding 1000's of miles a year!!!!
The funny thing was at the start of the ride, some people who didn't have a line of sight view of the trailer thought the music was coming from the PA the band was using.
My next plan is to add some lights for a group drunken night ride, but that won't be till September sometime.