Sunday, 27 May 2012
My lovely bicycle - Pashley Britannia Review
After first getting my mitts on my beautiful bike a couple of months a go I thought it was time to do a blog post all about her. I promised photos with baguette and flower filled wicker baskets galore so here it finally is!
I've wanted a bike for a few years now, and I've always wanted a classic style bicycle with a traditional step through frame and of course a wicker basket on the front. After months of research, this year for my birthday I finally got one. I decided on the Pashley Britannina in White, although I was originally going to go with the Pashley Poppy in pink, but changed my mind after riding the Britannia and preferring the rounded handle bars. I completely fell in love with it. I love literally everything about the way it looks. The colour, the Honey coloured Brooks leather saddle, the leather handle bar grips, the ding dong bell, the dynamo light, the cream tyres, the basket, EVERYTHING! Every opportunity I get I am out on my bike, I've had so many lovely comments and approving looks as I cycle along on balmy evenings, and it help's me keep fit too. I absolutely love her to death and would recommend her a 1000 times over, however there are a couple of things that are worth mentioning if you are considering a Pashley;
This bike (and most Pashley bikes) is heavy, making climbing hills tricky (especially if you're not used to it) It has 5 gears which help, but still these bicycles aren't really built for hills in my honest opinion. If you live somewhere nice and flat then you have nothing to worry about, she rides like an absolute dream, but it is something to think about if you live somewhere that's quite hilly.
The saddle needs coating with Proofide which helps to soften the leather and help the breaking in process, and ideally you need a rain cover to protect it if you will be riding in the rain. This may seem like something silly to note but no one told me about this and I went through the painful task of breaking in the saddle without doing so (I literally couldn't sit down properly for a couple of days). Once I found out about it I proceeded to treat the saddle with the proofide and it has been so much more comfortable ever since.
The gear's and brake's are concealed hub breaks. I still don't fully understand how these work but there is a bedding in period where the gears need re-adjusting. It's pretty straight forward once you know what you're doing, and after doing it a couple of times I have no bother with it at all now.
Pashley bikes are on the expensive side, I researched so many alternatives but I completely fell in love with the bikes and loved the fact that they are hand built in England. Once I had set my heart on one, nothing else compared. I was lucky enough to get money from of my nearest and dearest for my birthday and also saved up some money for the bike, but like I said there are so many gorgeous alternatives available out there if you love this style of bicycle but don't want to spend a lot of money.
I don't actually use the basket that often, I find it easier to cycle without it and only really use it to put a drink or sandwiches in if I'm not taking a bag with me. The basket can make the front end of the bike quite top heavy and difficult to steer, but you get used to it in no time and it looks super pretty.
Last but not least I would say this bicycle is for leisurely/road cycling, you can't really go through tame forest trails or through the countryside either for that matter. The bike is supposedly a "hybrid" bike but has no suspension other than on the saddle. It's for this reason my boyfriend insists on me having an alternative mountain bike for any other "off road" cycling.
Overall I absolutely adore this bike and would recommend it to anyone, I would never ever get rid of her and I am genuinely so happy when out cycling in the sun. I bought the bike from The Big Red bike Company in Harrogate, it is the Pashley Britannia in White and I have the 17.5" frame.
What do you think about my lovely bicycle?