Friday, December 20, 2013

Friday WTF: Squirrel Vs. Fork Edition

  Ever been riding and have a squirrel or prairie dog run in front of you? This guy has...

"Rocky, noooo!"

Unedited and slightly more graphic version here.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

S-Works Tandem?

   While searching for a good way to get Cal on my bike safely, I stumbled across this full carbon monstrosity:

The S-Works tandem

   I think I am not alone in thinking that tandems are usually pretty lame, but this one is pretty darn cool! Check out the connection between the front and rear drive; while most tandem bicycles use a second chain to connect the driver and passenger cranks, Specialized has used a shaft to connect the two:

Not a chain in sight!

   There is some confusion since there is no chain connecting the passenger crank and the back wheel.  Overall this is a sweet bike! But if I were to get something to haul Calvin around in, it's more likely to be like this:

The glorious bakfiet

   "Pile in, kids! were going to the helmet store!"

Monday, December 16, 2013

Fixing Rusty Spots

Reader Mail!

   Enough with the weird bike b*ll sh*t, get to some building or wrenching posts.

    Fredo, Delaware

Always great to hear from my fans. Fredo, you are in luck because I just picked up a steel 29er SS frame with a couple rust spots. Here's what you do to remove unsightly rust and keep your bike smooth and clean:

1. Examine Rust - Yep, it's rust. This bike has a lot of paint chips and dings. I'm addressing four of the largest areas that are rusting badly so it won't get any worse. 

Inside the fork

Inside the chainstay

2. Sand the rust away -  It's important to make sure all rust is gone, even at the cost of some paint. Any rust you miss will eventually peel off the new paint.

Inside the fork


3. Primer - This is important because the pain will stick better if it's properly primed. These are some hard to get to areas, especially without getting paint all over the rest of the bike. Paint carefully!

Primer and paint selection

Primed inside fork

4. Paint - After the primer is dry, hit it with a few layers of paint. I like to put on the early layers more thin, and then increase thickness as I go. The last layers should be the thickest to get a good sheen.

Inside fork


  The paint came out of the can a little... splattery for some reason, so this doesn't have an ideal finish. For the purpose of protecting the frame from further rust, it will work great.

5. Admire - I'm pleased with how this came out. I predict that this paint will last many rides!

Keep an eye out for more updates as this frame build shapes up.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Friday WTF: Full Carbon Recumbent

   Looking for that bike that says, "I don't care about performance, I only want comfort." Well look no further than a recumbent. But what if you're looking for a low performance frame with high performance comfort? Well then you'd be the target audience for a FULL CARBON RECUMBENT.

Behold it in it's glory

   I'm not saying recumbent bikes are bad. I'm not saying that a full carbon recumbent with Zipp 303's and a SRAM Red carbon crank is a gross waste of money. All I'm saying is they're weird and the people that ride them are not to be trusted...

Thursday, December 12, 2013

New Style Single Speed Clamps?

Check out these nipple single speed clamps! This is what a normal single speed spacer kit looks like. This is for when you aren't running a whole cassette, and only want to run one gear:

The spacer kit

This is what it looks like in action:

Single speed conversion

   There are some options for different styles, for example this is a little more sleek looking:

2 piece spacer kit (with end cap)

   Enter Gear Clamp. These guys are building a clamping system to convert to a single speed:

Gear clamp system

   The verdict? In my opinion, it's a cool but overly complex answer to a solved problem. You'll get a tighter fit on your cog by using spacers and clamping from the end with the cap (from above). It seems like this would work its way loose frustratingly often. Someone write in and tell me why I'm wrong.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

60 MPH on a Downhill Bike?

   Casey Brown is a pro downhill rider from Canada, and she is intense. In the video below, she's trying to break 60 on her mountain bike on a trail in British Colombia. This trail is straight, steep and fast. What does she do to kick it up a notch? Takes her brakes off. Check it:

Props to you, Casey Brown!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Friday WTF: Misused bikes?

   Who's to say if a bike is being used properly? If it's being ridden, it is probably OK, right? Well, these few would make me think twice...

8" travel commuter?

Full Carbon commuter?

   Why is it always commuters that end up bastardizing these bikes?! 

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Derailleurs, Now With More Wood

   With all the material research and development in bicycles - titanium, carbon, magnesium - here is a refreshing study into a wooden derailleur. The project was taken on by Max Hoffman, a student working at a community bike shop. He took some parts and recreated a Campy derailleur with many of the parts out of walnut.

Wood and beauty

While this is a non functioning example (mounting stresses would destroy the part) it is an interesting insight into how the parts fit together.
   I think one of the commenters said it best - " this day and age of carbon and titanium, it's cool to see a throwback to art." Thanks, once again to Bikerumor for the link to this awesome story.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Turkey Day post!

   Hopefully you're all enjoying the holidays as much as this guy. He and some friends rode all around San Francisco, tracking their ride with Strava. The route was designed to make this awesome turkey design! Check out the stats though...

50+ miles, 4,000+ feet elevation gain

Happy Thanksgiving!