Visit Vesta on a Vespa…

…okay, not really. But Dawn, NASA’s ion drive-propelled space probe launched in 2007 is a better ride anyway. Dawn visited Vesta, a protoplanet in the asteroid belt, in 2011, and just arrived around another protoplanet, Ceres, on March 6th. Asteroids are of keen interest to solar system scientists, who are keen to unlock the origin…

Telescopes I have known, part II

In the first part of this post, I talked about three telescopes I owned in the years following the reignition of my passion for the night sky in 2001. I won’t follow a strict chronological order in this installment, but rather will group my telescopes into two categories: small refractors and big refractors. While I…

The Crane Suzu Bell

I like two part titles. So, for this post, I kept imagining a clever subtitle. “The best $12 you can spend on your bike,” or “If Sauron Rode a Bike, He’d Forge This Bell in Mount Doom”. Finally, nothing quite capturing what I was trying to accomplish on this yet again hazy and cold winter…

Buying Your First Telescope

So, you want to buy your first telescope, and you’re wondering what you should get… Actually, there already are a variety of excellent resources that passionate and knowledgable amateurs have put together. Michael Edelman’sĀ Heretic’s Guide to Choosing and Buying Your First TelescopeĀ is comprehensive, reasonable, and I was pleased to see he basically had the same…

Inside Line Equipment’s (ILE) Rack Bag

When I was briefly considering cargo trucks for the official ride of Bicycle Astronomy, I found a company in San Francisco (you kinda knew it had to be there, or Portland, right?) called Inside Line Equipment. ILE is pretty much one dude named Eric Fischer, and they make a variety of cycling-oriented bags and backpacks,…

The Yuba Mundo Bread Basket

Note: This is the first of a two-part review of the Bread Basket, a front frame mounted basket for the Yuba Mundo cargo bicycle. The first part will look at the basket itself, and a simple off-the-shelf (!) modification that greatly increases its usability. The next part will deal with a custom-made “rack bag” by…