Bicycles

Tours

Campaigning

Articles

Trivia

Blog

Also see:

The Dutch Bike Bits blog includes comparisons and reviews of cycling components.


The Hembrow Cycling Holidays blog has stories about cycle routes in Drenthe.


We organize Study Tours to show off the best cycling infrastructure in the world.

David Hembrow's Bicycle Pages

This page lists bicycles I've owned, ride stories and other miscellaneous articles on cycling, musings on efficiency. At the end are some odd things to do with cycling. I also have a blog largely about cycling.

Bikes and trailers I've still got

Sinner Mango Velomobile. The fastest bike I've ever owned, also extremely comfortable and suitable for touring, and wonderful for commuting even in terrible weather as you stay warm and don't get wet.

Pashley PDQ recumbent. Very comfortable saddle and a great tourer. I've used it for many long rides.

Old English 3 speed. Perfect town bike. Super reliable Sturmey Archer AW 3 speed hub gear, upright position, North Road bars etc. Used every day so does more distance than the other bikes, but somehow didn't get a web page written about it. However, it did eventually appear in my blog. Baskets front and back to carry quite a lot of shopping. When that's not enough capacity, I have:

Xtracycle Free-Radical. The largest capacity bike I've ever owned. This is my cargo bike. It's used every week to take my baskets to the post office. Now fitted with a front rack for even more capacity, and occasionally pulling the Dog Trailer trailer for mega capacity.

Bicycles4U folding bikes. The smallest bikes I've ever owned. These are cheap folding bikes that we bought for a tour by bike and train that we made when looking for our home in the Netherlands.

BoB Yak trailer. Best trailer for taking things long distances. With basket, of course. Superbly useful. It also features in some of the tour stories and the PDQ review.

Dog Trailer. It's better to have two wheels than one for a heavy load or a dog. I made this to transport our dog, but it also gets used for other large loads, and attached to the Xtracycle you it allows an awesome amount of stuff to be shifted.

Bikes I have parted with

1949 Holdsworth Fixed Wheel. The lightest and third fastest bike I've ever owned. I was kindly given this bike by my neighbours and put quite a bit of work into getting it to be nice to ride, but unfortunately couldn't keep it when we moved.

Series 1 Moulton F Frame. A design icon, and very nice bike to ride too. I'd admired these stylish bikes for years and when I eventually got one I found it a surprisingly good bike to ride. Again, I unfortunately could not bring it with us when we moved.

Home made recumbent trike the first recumbent I ever owned. Bought as a half completed project, this was made of girders and very heavy indeed. Partly as a result of this, it wasn't particularly quick. However, it was comfortable and I commuted on it for a year or two and had a lot of fun. Two wheels at the back, the left of which had a Sturmey Archer 3 speed hub in it driven by a shaft and a 5 speed derailleur system mounted under the seat. Because of the drive being on one side and the seat being a bit far back it was quite good at turning corners while doing wheelies. Also great fun on ice. However, because there was nothing holding you into the seat as you turned, it was important to take care in the corners, or ride with one hand holding on.

Speed Ross recumbent. The second fastest and second lightest bike I've owned. This was a marvellous bike to ride and served well for many years of racing and other rides. I actually owned two different ones. Truly a wonderful bike, loads of fun to ride, and I very much regret selling it.

Home made children's recumbent. Cheapest recumbent I've owned. This was made so the kids could try racing at BHPC events.

Islabikes Trailerbikes. Wonderful for kids. We had two of these for our children and found them to be excellent. Not much point in keeping them when the children have outgrown them though so we sold them on to other families.

Ken Rogers Tricycle best thing ever for moving children. Ours was a 20" (451) wheel size tricycle, which I later converted to 406 due to better availability of tyres. Two child seats on the back. It also shifted any amount of shopping and such things as sacks of cement.


Bikes I never owned

A page of pictures of delivery bicycles.

If you've ever wanted a delivery bike of your own, take a look at the front racks that I sell. These fit most types of antique and modern bikes and transform them into very useful transport bicycles.

Things we like

We've a webshop in which you can find the sort of bicycle components which we like. In particular, see the section on parts to convert a sport oriented bike to be a more efficient and comfortable bike for daily use.

We also have a list of bike books, videos and other products we like here.

Tour Stories

I've written up several tour stories about racing, touring and educational trips in the UK and the Netherlands:

2000 - Touring in Lincolnshire

2001 - The HPV World Championships in Brighton

2002 & 2003 - Cyclevision in Lelystad

2003 - Cycling holiday in the Netherlands with children.

2005 - Visit to Velorama Cycle Museum.

2006 - Land's End to John O'Groats It's a classic ride - the length of the UK and over 1000 miles.

2006 - Cycling Study Tour in the Netherlands. (we've since organised other study tours)

2010 - Fietselfstedentocht. 235 km in one day

2010 - Family holiday in the Netherlands.

And there are many more touring stories on the blog.

Efficiency


Bicycles are the most efficient means of transport possible. I've a copy of a calculator hosted here, and also have blogged about this more than once.

Cycle Campaigning

I've done a fair bit of cycle campaigning and cycle promotion work in the UK in past years and produced the following articles mainly about the conditions facing cyclists in Cambridge in the UK.

Articles for the Cambridge Cycling Campaign newsletter:
    Bike light article
    Cycling Study Tour to the Netherlands in 2006 (note that we're organising more Cycling Study Tours)
    Mildenhall Rally
    Land's End to John O'Groats
    Arbury Park first article
    Arbury Park second article
    Cycle facilities on the cheap
    Cycle facilities on the cheap
    Cycle facilities on the cheap
    Cycle facilities on the cheap
    Cycle facilities on the cheap

I've also written a few more articles showing things in the UK and Netherlands from the perspective of when we used to live in Cambridge.

And since emigrating I've written an article about conditions here in the Netherlands for City Cycling magazine.

... and another for the Cambridge Cycling Campaign.

We also organise Study Tours for campaigners and planners interested in how the Dutch have achieved such a high rate of cycling, and I have a blog which goes over many of the same things.

How to ride a bike

If you've never learnt to ride a bike yourself, or you would like to know how to quickly teach a child to ride a bike, try looking at my method for teaching cycling. I've taught dozens of people to ride a bike using this method which simply shows people how bikes balance.

Bike light article

Back in 1998 I wrote an article about how to make a cheap but bright bike light.

These days I don't recommend building that light. Commercial lights are now much better than they were.

Broken parts

Over the years we've broken quite a lot of bicycle parts. Some of these are due to normal wear and tear, some due to manufacturing not being quite what it ought to have been.

Dutch Articles on Cycle promotion

To get the Dutch perspective, try my list of Dutch Cycle Promotion Articles.

Odd Bicycle things

I'm putting together a list of unusual bicycle adverts and other amusing things.

Also I have a few youtube videos of unusual bicycles and bicycle ads in the Netherlands

And who am I ?

For many years I worked in the computer industry in Cambridge in the UK, mainly on embedded software. These days we live in Assen in the Netherlands, which is a wonderful place to cycle, and I make willow baskets, especially bicycle baskets of all types. I also arrange cycle tours and run a web shop which sells only bicycle parts which we trust.


My home page
Netherlands Cycling Holiday