A quick spin

On New Year's Eve I hurtled around the village preceding a local loop. This was about 12 km (7.5 miles) which I did in 3 min 22 sec. That's 214 kph (134 mph). A personal best. And, if I'm not mistaken, a world record for human powered vehicles. Click on the piccy for the viddy.

Of course it's a cheat. The video is whizzed up by a factor of ten; otherwise it would have been tedious. Little traffic, no close shaves, pancake landscape.

It was really just a trial of the camera, a GoPro HD Hero. I've had it for nearly a year, and finally got around to bolting it to a bike. I thought it would bounce too much on the handlebar foam but it doesn't. The original video is 1920x1080p and it looks great on a big telly, if disconcerting because it's upside down.

My real speed was terrible, but if you think I'm unfit on the bike, you should see me walk. Both will improve.

11 comments on “A quick spin”

  1. Patrick wrote:

    Most enjoyable Alan! Mesmerising – sort of. It reminds me of London to Brighton in 4 Minutes (made in 1952). This was shown on TV occasionally as a special treat in the 1950s. I'd be interested to know a bit more about the equipment, how you use the camera, edit the movie, etc.

  2. Kern wrote:

    Well, that is certainly a challenge to follow. I too am curious about your camera setup. My son has a helmet-mounted camera he used on a couple of tours with his girlfriend. It's always a treat to see footage from the saddle – there are vignettes that don't stay still long enough to dismount and photograph.

    No need to be ashamed of 214 kph – even Hilary would find it difficult keeping pace!

  3. Hilary wrote:

    No need to be ashamed of 214 kph – even Hilary would find it difficult keeping pace!

    I'm touched by your faith in me Kern! If only it were justified! 😀 I just keep plodding!

  4. Mary wrote:

    Loved your video Alan, although it did make a feel a bit giddy watching it... Those junctions whizzed up and past!

    Again, like Patrick, what camera are you using? Ive not seen one quite like it before.

  5. Chris wrote:

    I've seen this fast video lark done before, but it was so fast that I couldn't follow the route the rider had taken and I wanted to. Am I being daft or is there a way of slowing it down in the You Tube viewer that I've missed?

    Incidentally, why is it upside down when viewed on your television screen, Alan?

  6. Patrick wrote:

    I tried to slow it down towards the end when a figure appeared to wave to the camera, but I could only stop it.

  7. Alan wrote:

    The camera is mounted upside down on the bike, so part of the editing is to rotate the image by 180 degrees.

    When I bought it in spring 2010 it was the most affordable 1080p camera I could find. Some notes on the camera, including a link to the manufacturer: http://www.snibgo.org/gopro.htm

    I could mount it on a helmet, but I'm concerned about increasing damage to my head if I fall off.

    I edit either with Blender (some notes here http://www.snibgo.org/blender.htm), or (as in this case) my own software called "clippings", which works from a text edit control list, rather than being interactive. I wrote clippings for a project where I spent 2 hours shooting an unscripted video then had only one hour to edit before the first screening.

    That's me waving at the camera. I don't think YouTube can slow the video down, and it couldn't do it properly as the edited video contains one-tenth of the frames from the original.

  8. Patrick wrote:

    That's me waving at the camera.

    Yes, I guessed it was either you or a traffic cop. Thanks for the links.

  9. Alan wrote:

    The jacket was £16.65 from http://www.hivis.net/c78/High-Visibility/Hi-Vis-Jackets/Hi-Vis-Parka/ , but they no longer do the exact model I bought. If it makes me look like a traffic cop, I'm not complaining.

  10. Chris wrote:

    Alan wrote: the edited video contains one-tenth of the frames from the original.

    Doh! 😳

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