Episode 209. Raleigh Lizard. (Part 4).

 Okay folks, Today I wanna yamma on about my Raleigh Lizard. I got this thing way back at the end of 2019 because I was thinking about retiring the Univega from active service for a little while. Three years later, and I've finally got around to doing just that, and the Univega now sits naked in my loft awaiting a full re-spray. But enough about that for now, let's talk about this...

As you can see my Raleigh Lizard has not been out for a while, infact it's last trip out was still during the lockdown, since then it's been sitting at the back of the collection waiting to be ridden. I know I've mentioned it before, but a while back one of my cycling friends pointed out that I tend to build the same bike over and over again, just with different frames. As I sat there looking at my bike projects I could see that he was right, I have this Raleigh Lizard, and the now completely stripped Univega Rover 3.3 that both have big frames, and are very similar in many ways. But added to that I also have a Raleigh Mustang project that I really should get around to finishing as I've not touched since 2017 other than to move it so I can get to other bikes. Then there are various other bike projects, all with big frames, all waiting for me to start, or even just continue with them. It's no good, I've been thinking for a while that some will have to go.

I like the Raleigh Lizard, it's a cool bike, people like them, and I like it, if I had any sense at all I would ditch all the projects with big frames, and just keep this one. But for some reason I want to keep the Univega, which is half the reason I've stripped it to a frame as it makes it less likely that I'll sell it while I'm wondering what to do with it next. Anyway, with the Lizard dug out from the back of the stash, the vines pulled off it and a quick lubing up with 3in1 I headed out.

Back in 2021 I decided in my wisdom or otherwise to fit the saddle that I had originally bought for my Daewoo Genius project (Update coming soon!). I remember thinking that I wasn't looking for a light weight saddle when I got it, and that it was probably more suited to some lovely light weight Racing Bike that is being ridden by an athletic lycra clad type person, rather than an old crappy steel Mountain Bike ridden by a fat middle aged pie-eater, but I thought I'd pop it on and give it a go anyway.

I was expecting it to be absolutely horrible, and I fully expected that by the time I returned back to BelongaClint I would feel like I had become one with the bike, and we would be joined forever, by a saddle that was lodged deep into my bum. But no, well, not at first anyway. To begin with it really wasn't too bad at all, but by about a mile or so into my ride I had to stop and make sure that it wasn't already inside my bum! The good news was that it wasn't, but it was a bit uncomfortable, however I pressed on, and a couple of miles later I was starting to get into the groove, or perhaps the saddle was, but whatever, it was starting to get a little more comfortable to ride on. An hour or so later and I was back outside my house, and it didn't really feel too bad at all. I figured that the more I rode it, the more I will be able to tolerate it. But I remember swapping them over because I was going out for a day of riding with the wife, and I felt that putting a softer saddle on the Daewoo would probably be easier on my bum than this lightweight racing saddle. My plan was to swap them back at some point, but I never got around to it, and so here it has stayed for a while, on the unused Lizard. Before heading out the other day I did look at it, and considered swapping it for something a bit softer, but I ended up thinking that it would be OK, how hard can it be?

Well the truth be known it's been a year or so since I last rode the Daewoo with this saddle and about six months since I last rode the Univega with its hard plastic saddle and in that time my bum has got soft! Within ten minutes my bum was feeling quite abused, twenty minutes and I was starting to wonder if I'd ever sit down again. By the time I'd been riding for half an hour I was thinking that maybe it was time to get off and walk, and perhaps a visit to the tip as I passed it on the way home might be the way forward. Just to see if I could liberate a more padded saddle.

 I called in, but there were no bikes with saddles that I thought were worth having, sure they were all more padded, and softer than this one, but they all had splits, or damage of some sort. Not that it really mattered though because while I was there one of my friends who works at the tip decided that he needed the Raleigh Lizard more than I did. Apparently he'd been looking for an old mountain bike with a big frame, and mine would be ideal. So, as I've been meaning to have a culling of my collection for some time now I just let him have it, and walked home.

As I walked home I though about the Lizard, and wondered if I had made a mistake, but pretty soon I realised that I'd done the right thing, it needed to be re-homed. I thought about why I'd kept it for so long as it's so like the Univega in so many ways, and the truth is that I've probably kept it simply because I like the colour, and that's about it really. It's a good bike, and it was good to ride, and good fun, but my favourite thing about it was probably how it looked. I'm kinda glad I worked that out, because I've been wondering what colour to paint the Univega ever since I stripped it, and now I know.

So until next time, have a great day gang... Lets ride!