I had already decided to go on with my trip before I arrived in Stockholm. I just needed 2 weeks or so to catch up with everybody and replace some equipment.

My rear wheel had gone wobbly and I couldn’t fix it on the road. I know how to true wheels and also build wheels, so it was a bit bothering that I couldn’t sort it out.

I ordered new better spokes and nipples, I though I just re-spoke the wheel with the proper tools and it be good. The wheel was laced with 2-cross and the rim had French drilling, so I didn’t want to tear the wheel down before I had the new spokes. Once the spokes arrived from Germany I started to replacing spoke by spoke, this was my great plan to make sure that the wheel was laced the same way as before.

But after I had replaced some spokes I noticed that the eyelets on the rim had cracked and were unable to retain the spoke tension. So this was the reason why I never could get the wheel back in shape.

If you think this with bicycle wheels sounds very interesting you should read http://www.wheelpro.co.uk/wheelbuilding/book.php , if you plan any longer bike trip you should know how to change spokes and true a wheel.

So this was bad news, I went to the local wheel expert but they only had skinny rims the size of my pinky in stock.

Wheel going to the doctor
Figure 1. Wheel going to the doctor

Next order of business was to order some new rims from the UK and Germany. The cost of rims isn’t that high so I ordered some different types and hoped that at least one useable rim would arrive even if it was in the middle of the summer.

Eventually I got the rims and decided to use a Syn Rhyno 700C rim that contains a massive amount of metal and has no eyelets. Time will tell if that was the right rim or not. While waiting for my wheel I looked in to Smashwords some more, I had bought some of my favorite books from there,

Dave Conroy – Tired of I.T! – How I learned to stop worrying and love the bicycle https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/290927

– and –

These e-books require special formatting and there is a style guide that describes how to create a book for Smashwords. This sounded like fun so I just copy pasted all my blog entries in to a book and published it. That was fun !

Remember that it is formatted for e-book readers, you can get epub reader software for almost any device. The book is also available in your favorite fruit shop, don’t know what the link is. During my first 55 days I only had to use my Trangia 27 outdoors kitchen about 10 times, so I decided to downsize it to a JetBoil Flash that is more or less only good for heating water. But it saved considerable space and weight compared with the Trangia.

For some reason that is still a bit unclear I decided I wanted or maybe in some far fetched way needed a smart phone. Since I don’t want to ride around with rotten fruit I opted for the Android CAT B15 Dual SIM phone. The key selling points are that it has two SIM cards so I can have my Swedish card and a local card with cheap connectivity online at the same time.

And since it’s powered by google I guess it makes life easier for NSA and likes to read my thoughts.

My old Nokia E72 Business phone needed charging once a week or so, the new smart phone needs a constant supply of power. Since I have a hub dynamo on my bike that delivers power when the wheel spins I bought a new B+M light with a USB port for charging stuff. Some tests I did indicated that I could generate ~1500 mAh in a day of cycling. The phone has a 2000 mAh battery that lasts for 2 days if WiFi and 3G and the screen is turned off.

During my time at home I started look at ways to get to Germany quickly as I didn’t really want to spend a week or more camping out in the flooded parts of southern Sweden.

I found a really cool way to get there, there is a ferry from just south of Stockholm (Nynäshamn) to Ventspils in Latvia.

From there another ferry goes to Travemünde which was just the place I wanted to go. The ferry rides were almost 2 days in total so I wanted a cabin for the Latvia to Germany leg, this was a bit expensive but since the trip would be more than 60 hours door to door I decided against just getting a chair.

Soon the journey will start again…​…​…​