Sunday, February 05, 2017

10 Second Anime - Minami Kamakura Koukou Joshi Jitensha-bu - Episode 5

The Cycling Club meets the Cycle Flat bike shop manager and picks out their road bikes.

Episode 5 - "Choosing a Bicycle is Hard?"


This episode was almost entirely cute girls cutely shopping for cute bikes from a cute adult bike shop manager. Cutely! Nothing wrong with that, but as someone that is not a bike noob, I didn't pay that close attention to what was being said. I just did a lot of looking. This was a real bike shop! Name brands, shelves, posters, price tags with lots of digits!

The only bit of plot development was that the cycling club won't be official until they "produce a result" within three months. That's awfully vague, but a club has to have a mission statement and then do something to achieve a goal along those lines.

Also, official clubs produce lots of bureaucratic headaches for the advisor...

I'm sure the girls thank Mori-sensei for her sacrifice.

But the episode was about buying bikes, which meant the mysteriously absent bike shop manager was due to return.

Cycle Flat Manager Korone Hooji

Korone is short. Really short. She looks like a child short. She's a bit sensitive about that.

She was gone all this time (as if all this time was weeks and weeks when it was probably just a week) because she was at the big Taiwan bicycle trade show. The Taipei International Cycle Show usually occurs in the last week of March, which coincides nicely with the timeline of this show. Taiwan is the largest base of mass production for bicycles worldwide. If your bike is carbon, it is almost guaranteed to have been produced in Taiwan.

Some typhoon also delayed Korone, so she was already starting to worry new character and staff worker Tsuru.

Hello busty megane apron wearing Tsuru! She was minding the shop that day because Nagisa was taking another driving license test for large vehicles. I'm sure this was mentioned because she's going to be the driver for the girls' support and gear vehicle at whatever event they'll do to "produce results."

Tsuru also likes teasing Korone for looking a like a child. Hey, Korone didn't have to come back from Taiwan with electronic wiggling cat ears and tail.

Road Bikes Are Expensive!

I think I've heard that somewhere before... Oh, just every time I walk into my own bike shop.

Please teach us Korone-sensei!

Three of the girls are buying a real bike for the first time, and at these prices, they really do need an education.

Yes, every new cyclist "splits their butt in two" when they start out.

The best thing Korone said, "There are no all-purpose bikes!" Preach it! Road racing bikes look different than mountain bikes look different than city cruisers look different than hybrids. Each one is specialized to their conditions. I know dudes who have 7 or more bikes depending on where they're pedaling that day, or what mood they're in. They also have a lot of money and no kids, so...

I found it odd that every bike on the shop floor was already outfitted with a light and a cycle computer. I think that's some lazy cg modeling there. "Oops, forgot to take those out."

Test riding with flat pedals is weird. I always bring my shoes in case they have the right pedal system lying around. Bike shops usually do. Also, helmets, people. Sheesh.

Choosing a bike on how it feels is usually best for a beginner. The pros get expertly fitted on whatever bike manufacturer is supplying their team, so it doesn't matter, but regular people usually won't spend hundreds of dollars for an hour's worth of work to get all the seat, bars and stem adjustments necessary to fit their bodies.

Of course, Hiromi chose the Japanese brand bike. Anchor is made by Bridgestone in Japan.

Well, they got their bikes, Tomoe chose Liv, rich girl Fuyune chose Pinarello (hopefully she learns to pronounce it soon) and Natsumi already had her Cannondale, now how are they going to pay for them? Each one is upwards of 3800 dollars. And that's not even including the helmet, shoes, pedals, clothes, bottle cages, bottles and repair kits and pumps.

Mori-sensei came by for the suggestion of their "results." A criterium? These girls are going to learn how to ride a crit in less than 3 months? Woof. I'll talk about how dodgy that is next episode. I figure this is where we'll meet the blonde girl too. Maybe while they're training for the race? Come on, we're half-way through the season already.

Cycling Porn.

This week we saw most of the bike brands we've seen already. Neil Pryde came back for the 2016 version of Mori-sensei's bike. Tomoe rode a little folding bike when she was a kid. Korone pointed to Specialized for road racing, Cannondale for MTB, Giant for hybrids and Bridgestone for mommy bikes. Natsumi warned about riding over grates with such thin wheels. And Korone showed us a gauged torque wrench for attaching pedals to crank levers.

Girls worry way more about bike tans than boys do. Not girlish adult Korone, though. After only a week in Taiwan, she picked up that color riding every day.

Hiromi chose her partner, an Anchor RL8 and Natsumi test rode a Cannondale SuperSix, but she already had a Six of her own. Funny, Natsumi hasn't said where she bought her bike yet. Maybe from the same shop Tomoe and Hiromi rented their bikes in the 2nd episode?

The omake had the voice actresses learning how to change a flat inner tube. I'll only add that you shouldn't remove the whole tire from the wheel. Leave one bead on the rim and then you'll only have to worry about the tough experience of seating the bead on a clincher once.

Next time, First Race. These girls are crazy. Well, criteriums in the US are crash factories in the tight turns, but maybe Japan does it differently for this Kamakura Cup Night Criterium.

The end card shows us the Bakery and Cycle Flat ladies. Well, only one of them is "flat."

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