Guestbook Entries - Southern Indiana on the Kick-back - CycleBlaze

Guestbook Entries

Below is an archive of guestbook entries I received and sent when this journal was posted at the Crazy Guy on a Bike website.

CycleBlaze (where this journal is now) allows comments for each day’s entry and for each individual picture, if you’d like to leave a note.


#1: Good Start
 By Michael Legel on Tue 25 Aug 2015 06:10
Looks like you are off to a good start Jeff ... as in past trips I will be sharing your chronicles on my web site. Thanks so much for sharing your adventures.

#8: Re: Good Start
 By Jeff Teel (map330) on Wed 23 Sep 2015 20:05 in reply to #1
Thanks for being the first to sign my guestbook, for following along, and for sharing this trip - and the others I have been on - with your website readers.


#2: Typhoon!
 By Bernard O'Reilly (Bern) on Thu 27 Aug 2015 09:07
Hi Jeff, I was amazed to see a Schwinn Typhoon on Crazy Guy. That was my first "real" bike. I delivered papers with it back in the mid to late 60's. Remember the giant metal basket that you could mount on the front to hold the papers? Enjoy your ride, it's fun following you.

#9: Re: Typhoon!
 By Jeff Teel (map330) on Wed 23 Sep 2015 20:16 in reply to #2
Thank you for letting me know you were following my trip. Sorry I didn't respond to you earlier. My friend's old BlackBerry made it nearly impossible to sign-in to my account. A 24-inch Typhoon was my first bike - very rugged, though I eventually broke both seat springs (on that first bike). I thought this kick-back would work for touring (and it did), since trips on my single-speed worked out OK.
I never delivered newspapers until I was helping out my sons (on foot), and I don't remember the large front basket you're talking about. I do recall when I was a kid, seeing delivery boys with the papers folded up and stuffed in their rear baskets.
This was an enjoyable ride - even more so once I finally cleared the hills in Indiana.


#3: Old Railroad Stations
 By Aaron Bransky (arbransky) on Sat 29 Aug 2015 12:08
Jeff, good to see you are off on another adventure. As always, I enjoy your writing and your photographs. You've got a good eye for things that make the Midwest the Midwest.
I suspect that the old stations you noted in your journal (with the funny round windows) were old Illinois Terminal RR stations. That was an interurban line that lasted after the end of the interurban era by hauling freight.
I remember riding my neighbor's 2 speed Schwinn, it might have been a Typhoon. I thought the kick back 2 speed setup was the coolest thing. Still do.

#10: Re: Old Railroad Stations
 By Jeff Teel (map330) on Wed 23 Sep 2015 20:22 in reply to #3
Thanks for your kind words. I've heard of the Illinois Terminal Railroad, since there had been a line through Morton. Part of that line is now the River Trail of Illinois, which connects Morton to East Peoria. What I didn't realize is the extent (back in the day) of the Illinois Traction System/Illinois Terminal Railroad. I see you are correct, the buildings I saw in Union and Buffalo were for that railroad.
I enjoyed riding this bike. It never failed to shift for me, and stayed upright on its kickstand, as long as it was parked reasonably. If it just used standard tires . . .


#4: Tunnel Hill Trail
 By Scott on Tue 1 Sep 2015 09:14
Jeff, I'm really enjoying following your trip. I live in Evansville, IN and looks like you are going to come through/near here, correct? I'm going to ride the Tunnel Hill Trail next month and I'm really looking forward to it. I've read various reviews of the trail and seem to get varying reports on the trail's condition (I realize it depends on the weather). My concern is that some people say it is not a problem to do on a road bike and others say they wouldn't recommend it. I plan to do it on my road bike with 25mm tires. What is your opinion? Was the trail hard-packed?

#11: Re: Tunnel Hill Trail
 By Jeff Teel (map330) on Wed 23 Sep 2015 20:28 in reply to #4
Technical difficulties prevented me from answering your question while I was on-the-road. I hope I'm not too late now. As you know, I did end up going through Evansville. Nice trails and residential streets, but I didn't care for riding on the business highway.
I don't have any feel for riding trails with a road bike and (somewhat) skinny tires. My tires on this trip were two inches wide. I had no problems. I've been on some trails where the gravel was a bit too soft (The Cowboy Trail in Nebraska, for one), but I don't recall the Tunnel Hill Trail as being like that.
I'd recommend you get a better opinion from Jonathan Voelz, who lives in Vienna. He rides the Tunnel Hill Trail often. Most of his posted journals (except his Kansas trip) cover days that he was on the Tunnel Hill Trail. If you'd post your question to the guestbook for one of those journals, I'm sure he'd reply.
I hope you have an enjoyable ride on a nice fall day.


#5: Excited About Your Trip!!
 By Alan Osborne (augiedog) on Sat 12 Sep 2015 15:43
Hey Jeff,
I just started following your trip yesterday and have caught up to your posts of 9-11. Where do I start? I grew up in Peotone,Il. near Kankakee for 30 some years moved out of state moved back, then lived in Peoria from 1990 to 1993. I am a cyclist but have not ridden for a couple of years but I'm building a trekking/touring bike right now to do exactly what you are doing. I have never enjoyed reading about a trip as much as I have enjoyed yours. You are riding a no tech,simple two speed with the original seat,steel handle bar basket and saddle baskets. This just blows my mind because I am all about the weight and the tech stuff. Your food of choice is hilarious! Beanie Weenies and sardines with some crackers. I am not making fun of you I am amazed and admire the simplicity of this trip up to this point. As you start out each day your not pressured or rushed to get to your next destination. This is how bicycle touring should be! I have ridden the Hilly 100 in Bloomington,In and the scenery was amazing. I have also cycled around the Peoria,Morton,area and rode the rail trail just outside of Peoria to I believe Wyoming.Il I was a former racer but now I just want to tour and enjoy the road as you are doing. I currently live in Apex,North Carolina but still have family in Peotone and a friend in Peoria I am hoping to visit in October. I am going to continue following your trip and if I get to Peoria I would like to have dinner with you and just talk touring. It looks like you will miss the Pumpkin Festival though! I loved going to that and miss it. I really love your photo's and miss the flat roads of the Midwest and like another person mentioned that is what makes the Midwest the Midwest!! I will stop now and apologize for this long message but I couldn't help getting excited over your trip. Be safe and maybe we will meet someday!

#12: Re: Excited About Your Trip!!
 By Jeff Teel (map330) on Wed 23 Sep 2015 20:35 in reply to #5
Wow! Thanks for the post! It's not too long (in my opinion). I've been to Peotone (and Kankakee), and work in Peoria. I haven't been to North Carolina, though. I enjoy getting a bike ready for touring, and this one came together well. Beanee Weenees and sardines will carry me through a day or so, but you'll notice the bulk of my energy comes from over-eating at restaurants along the way. My late starts are often due to needing to finish up the preceding day's journal entry before it blends in with the current day, but you're correct, I'm usually in no rush. And I do love flat country roads.
I'd welcome a dinner get-together with you, and hope you do make it to Peoria in October. You should see my email address at the top of the email notification that you'll receive when I get this posted. Send me an email if you make it here.


#6: Congratulations.
 By Paul Baudendistel on Mon 21 Sep 2015
Nice Trip !
too many beanie weenies. :)
I enjoyed the last leg home.
Paul Metamora.

#13: Re: Congratulations.
 By Jeff Teel (map330) on Wed 23 Sep 2015 20:55 in reply to #6
What a delightful surprise to see you checking-in! You'll notice I didn't eat Beanee Weenees if there was a restaurant nearby!
Metamora was the eastern turn-around point for my trip, and my day-off there was a mini-vacation from riding. And what a pleasant vacation I had. Gateway Park is a beautiful place, and your hospitality was great! Thanks for showing me the Nature Center - what a peaceful spot. I've just checked-out the nature photos and videos you have posted on your Flickr sites at and They're very good. I especially like your heron pictures. I saw many herons on my trip, but couldn't even get my hands on the camera before they flew off.
Now that I'm back at work (well, not right at this moment), I can't help but smile with a little envy when I think of you sitting on the porch of the Nature Center, enjoying your pipe and coffee as you watch another day slowly unfold.


#7: Well done, Jeff!
 By Aaron Bransky (arbransky) on Tue 22 Sep 2015 23:09
Glad to see you had a good trip and made it back safe and sound. I enjoyed your writing and your pictures, and having grown up in Peoria, I particularly enjoyed the parts of your trip that went through central Illinois.
Looking forward to your next adventure.

#14: Re: Well done, Jeff!
 By Jeff Teel (map330) on Wed 23 Sep 2015 21:04 in reply to #7
Thanks. It's good to be back safe and sound, though we are having another week of extremely nice bicycling weather here.
When I get close to home, I start thinking, "Oh, that's too familiar for a picture", forgetting that it's not too familiar for readers who don't live here. I tried to do better on that this time. And I intend to add a few more pictures from my Kodak camera, when I get that unloaded.
My next four-week trip (I'm limited to four weeks-per-year now until I retire) may start/end at my brother-in-law and sister's house in Springfield, Missouri - though I need to ask them first.


#15: Great job documenting your trip on such a classic cool bike
 By Larry Webber on Tue 1 Dec 2015 20:57
I just found this site and somehow found your entries. I had a Chicago Schwinn Typhoon years ago (two actually) but never considered touring on one of these. I live in Indianapolis and before that Columbus Indiana (close to Edinburgh) and am familiar with the area you rode through. I am impressed with your trips your pictures and logs.
BTW I was born in Peoria IL and raised in Galesburg IL before my family moved to Indiana in 1963. I'd like to bike tour around rural Knox County as it is really pretty IMO as well as the Katy Trail.

#16: Re: Great job documenting your trip on such a classic cool bike
 By Jeff Teel (map330) on Fri 4 Dec 2015 09:49 in reply to #15
Thanks for signing my guestbook! My Typhoon worked great on this trip - shifted every time I back-pedaled, and gave me no concerns. If it just used standard tires, I'd make it my permanent touring bike. Next year I plan to move back to my three-speed.
I'm happy you enjoyed my trip reports. I have a few more pictures to add to the last report, and am committed to getting that done before I start planning next year's trip.
It's great to hear you'd like to go on touring trips. Getting through southern Knox County in 2013 wore me out, but it was very pretty. The Katy Trail is a great way to get through Missouri - as long as it's not too wet.

#17: Re: Great job documenting your trip on such a classic cool bike
 By Larry Webber on Tue 8 Dec 2015 19:25 in reply to #16
I know what you mean on "standard" tires. I have a 1962 Chicago Schwinn Panther (similar to the Typhoon) that came with a Bendix 2-speed kickback and Schwinn wheels. The 2-speed quit - probably just needs to be cleaned and new grease put back - so I put a "standard" alloy wheel and Shimano coaster brake on the rear with a modern tire on it for the time being so I could ride it. When I get the 2-speed working again I am going to have it laced into an alloy rim so I can use standard tires. Also the alloy rim is much lighter albeit less "stout" than the original steel wheel.
The front wheel is a bit problematic in that the original Schwinn fork slot that the axle fits in is too narrow for a modern alloy wheel axle. There are three choices; (1.) file the fork slots to accommodate a modern axle, (2.) replace the fork with a more modern one or, (3.) rebuild the original front hub and lace it into a new allow wheel. I a planning on option 3 when I can afford this. If I can find an original axle I will use that and keep the original wheel intact.
Once all this is done I'll have the Bendix 2-speed, lighter rims, and standard rims and tires. This is essentially updating some newer items yet retaining much of the bikes original character. The bike frame is very comfortable, fits me well, and just looks cool .. like the bikes that were around when I was young.

#18: Re: Great job documenting your trip on such a classic cool bike
 By Jeff Teel (map330) on Thu 10 Dec 2015 06:41 in reply to #17
Notions about making changes to my wheels have passed through my head now and then, but you have definitely thought this through! I didn't realize there'd also be a problem with the front fork/wheel conversion. I like your option 3 the best, also. What a great bike you'll have when you're done - the best of both worlds!


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