|Find out where I went the first weekend I got my new Buzz electric scooter, also includes pictures of the Golden Gate Bridge.|
Note: You can also take this trip by renting a bike near Pier 39's entrance. See bottom of this page for information.
This is a photo of "My Blue Heaven" (that is what I call my new Buzz electric scooter).
My trip across The Golden Gate Bridge
These photos were taken on Saturday, the day when I really got to try out my new Buzz electric scooter. I started out from my apartment at O'Farrell and Leavenworth in San Francisco and I rode about 5 miles to the Golden Gate Bridge. From there I rode the bike-way across the bridge, then at the other side I had to get on a road that leads to Sausalito. From Sausalito I took a ferry boat back to the San Francisco Ferry Building. From there I rode the rest of the way home on my new Buzz. The entire trip I covered about 11 miles on the Buzz.
The photos below are from that trip.
After I rode over some of the hills in San Francisco, I arrived at Marina Green. If you look across the bay you can see Sausalito, that is where I am heading to. The manufacture does not recommend going down hills for extended periods. They say this may increase wear of the brake lining and may adversely affect the ability to stop the unit. I found that the Buzz climbs hills quite well, and going down steep hills I put my feet down and walk it down the hill instead of using the brake.
Before I ordered my new Buzz I checked with the San Francisco Police Department to find out if it needed to be registered and they said no. They also said it was to be ridden on streets only, and on streets with a speed limit posted no higher than 25 mph. The Owners Manual also mentions that it should not be ridden in grass or off-road conditions. The picture above shows the ideal conditions for riding the Buzz, but this is San Francisco and there are hills all over the city.
This park is located at the foot of the Golden Gate Bridge, it is also a part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. From here you could go down a path that leads to Fort Point, but I did not have time to do it today. The #28 bus stops here in the parking lot that is close by, it is wheelchair accessible.
When I reached the toll plaza I saw a sign that said bike riders have to use the sidewalk on the other side of the bridge. In order to get there you have take a steep path that leads down under the bridge. I walked my Buzz down one side and then rode across and back up the other side. From this point I was getting a beep that meant my batteries were at 50%.
This was where it became very cold and windy, most of the people on their bikes were peddling up hill all the way to the center of the bridge, but not me. If you look to the left at the rail you can see it is only about four feet tall and any one could jump off if they wanted to. At the first tower ahead is where I took a break to get out of the wind and warm up, also had a snack.
This plaque was located at the tower where I took my break. There are two towers on the Golden Gate Bridge that I pass. I am sorry I did not get a picture of the road to Sausalito on the other side of the bridge. When I got to the other side there were no sidewalks and I had over 3 miles to go. The road was well paved and used mostly by bikes. I tried to go slow but every one on bikes was zooming past. I said the heck with it and let it coast all the way to Sausalito. I reached speeds of over 25 MPH and I did not have time to take photos along the way.
Well that is Sausalito in the background from the back of the ferry boat that is taking me back to the San Francisco Ferry Building. As you may want to know the trip down the hill was safe and at the bottom of the hill was enough of a slope uphill to slow me down without using the brake.
(The Buzz only has one lever operated drum brake on the rear wheel.)
While we are on the ferry back I will take time to answer some questions you may want to know. Well the Buzz is an electric scooter that is powered by two small 12 volt lead-acid batteries. The maximum speed is 14 MPH, with a average distance of 13 miles per charge, depending on terrain. The scooter comes with a very compact battery charger, and the batteries can be fully charged in 5 hours. The scooters aircraft-aluminum frame also features pneumatic tires, detachable fold up wire basket, and non-slip footrests. The Owners Manual states "This product is not a toy. It is not recommended for use by persons younger than 16".
Looking back at the Golden Gate Bridge I can say I conquered the bridge. I can not wait to do it again on a warm day.
The real reason for purchasing the Buzz was for transportation to and from work. Sometimes I work hours when there are hardly any buses running. Now I have reliable transportation on non rainy days. When I get to work the whole Buzz scooter folds up to L=39" W=10" H=10" and easily slides under my desk. Now you can see why I call the Buzz "My Blue Heaven".
Off to the far left side of this photo is the San Francisco Ferry Building, It is hard to believe I started out just 2 miles from it. After I arrived at the Ferry Building I hopped back on my Buzz and headed home. While on my way I heard the beeps change and that meant the micro-computer was telling me that the batteries were below 30% and should be charged immediately. Well I took it easy the rest of the way home, and when I got to my apartment I hooked it up to the charger. The Owners Manual said it takes about 5 hours to recharge the batteries and they were exactly right.
I can't wait till next weekend to see what new adventure I can go on.
The Buzz electric scooter has performed very well for me. I have planned my trips and have never been stranded with a dead battery. I now have two extra sets of batteries (each set is two batteries), at a cost of about $78.00 including shipping for each set. You can purchase extra batteries and replacement parts for the Buzz from the Huffy Corporation at 901 Pleasant Valley Dr., Springboro, Ohio 45066. On long trips I always carry an extra set. I put a mouse pad on the battery compartment and set the extra batteries on top of it. Then I put a stretch net over it and hook it together under the Buzz battery compartment. (The stretch net is used to carry basket balls on a bike.)
To sum it all up, the Buzz is perfect for me. I keep the Buzz in my living room and I don't have to worry about gas fumes or storing extra gas, it is compact, takes up little space, and it recharges very fast for just pennies a charge. The only servicing I have ever done on the Buzz is to recharge the batteries, and I check the air pressure once a week. I still love My Blue Heaven. Buzz, Buzz, Buzz.
On the left side of Pier 39's Entrance is the Blazzing Saddles Bike Rental. They have all types of bikes for rent and they come with a map of the trip. You can rent a bike here and take the same trip across the Golden Gate Bridge.
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Photographed and created by David T. Smith