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Year: 2010

Spokespeople ride 1/1/11

Spokespeople ride 1/1/11

New Years day.  Get it started out right with the Spokepeople who have a monthly ride starting in Wallingford.

  • What: Spokespeople’s “first Saturday ride”
  • When: 1/1/11 2pm-4pm
    • Please- come no later than 1:45 if you are new to riding on the road, new to riding in groups, or just need help adjusting your bike or helmet.
  • Where:  Meet at 4219 Wallingford Ave N.  Ride to the Greenlake PCC and back again.
  • How much:  Free!

Helmets and brakes are required on all Spokepeople rides.  If you need a helmet- one can be purchased through Spokespeople for $10.  Call Cathy Tuttle at 206.547.9569 a day in advance and they can bring one to the ride start.

More information at the Spokespeople website

This Sunday in Seattle

This Sunday in Seattle

Another “Fairweather Friends” group ride is set for this Sunday, January 2nd. It will end with a brunch that Charles at Wright Brothers Cycleworks will be hosting at his shop in Fremont. Brunch at Wright Brothers is open to all. There will be French Toast and Mimosas! Bring a bottle of bubbly if you want to help out!

It’s free, friendly, open to all and we hope to see you there. Take a look at the Facebook Invite invite your friends and come out for a ride in what is shaping up to be a beautiful day.

  • What: The “It’s the year 2011 and I still ride a bike” ride
  • When: Meet at 11am Sunday January 2nd 2011
  • Where: Counterbalance Park in Lower Queen Anne (Queen Anne Ave. N @ Roy St)
  • Why: Because it’s the year 2011 and we still ride a bike!

We’ll meet at 11am at Counterbalance Park (there is coffee across the street) and depart at 11:30. It will be a 10-15 mile scenic and casual ride. Riders of all levels encouraged.

I’ll be there, wishing I had this shirt on:

Shirt is available HERE if you are looking for a gift for me- I wear a size Large…

Training fail.

Training fail.

Not a big fan of this. Sure, a trainer does wonders, but that isn’t even a bike.  It’s a videogame.  Watching the people “ride uphill” the sway of the bike doesn’t make any sense.  Fail.

Tunnel vision

Tunnel vision

There is a lot of red tape in government. I’m not sure exactly how much, but I imagine that City, County, State, and Federal governments use red tape like hillbillies use duct tape. Some governments probably use red duct tape. In a nutshell- building infrastructure takes time- years, sometimes decades.

Thanks to those that put forth the effort that it takes to get things like this project done.

The Volume Generator

The Volume Generator

Volume Bikes– most known for their bmx bikes and more recently for being on the leading edge of the fixed gear freestyle scene- seems to be attempting to enter the urban bike realm with their new project:  The Generator.

A smart move for Volume- The Generator will likely be the bike that the folks currently riding Volume bmx and fixed gear freestyle bikes will choose if they decide to get something a little more practical for riding in the city.  Volume is known for well built bikes- and though they aren’t the lightest available- a lifetime warranty on a frame is a beautiful thing indeed, inspiring confidence in a company, giving a feeling that they’ve got your back.

The bike will be available April 15th.  No word on what the price will be.  It will come with an eccentric bottom bracket and is built around the Shimano Alfine 8-speed drivetrain.  No word if they will be using the Shimano Alfine generator hub…

The bike looks like a great place to START.  There are a few things that remind me that bmx and fixed gear freestyle are a bit impractical and lots of riding gets done in parking garages and indoor parks.  First- no fender mounts!?!  Even a majority of cross bikes come with fender mounts- to offer a bike that is supposedly built for riding in the streets without them seems a little shortsighted.  You are either assuming that no one rides in the rain, or that people don’t care about fenders- both ridiculous assumptions.  I hope I missed them, and that the production bike will come with mounts- if not, bummer.  The other thing that I’m more confused about that anything is the hydraulic disc brakes- Why?  Disc brakes are great, but what’s wrong with cable-actuated brakes?  They would likely be less expensive, lighter- and definitely much cleaner to work on.  Bleeding the brakes on my old freeride bike was anything but fun.

Other than that- this bike seems fun as shit.  A blast to whip around town on and if you have to drop a few stairs here and there, it will likely hold up just fine.

Frameset:

  • Colors: Flat Black & Metallic Silver
  • Sizes: 50, 53, & 56
  • Frame: Generator Full CR-MO w/ disc mounts
  • Fork: Generator Full CR-MO. 1-pc steerer w/ disc mounts

Wheels:

  • Wheels: Shimano Alfine 8-spd hub, Chosen quick release front hub. Alex double walled 36H rims
  • Tires: Resist 700X45c

Drivetrain:

  • Shifters: Shimano Alfin 8-spd
  • Cranks: Resist heat treated 4130 CR-MO 175mm
  • Chainring: Resist Icon 46t
  • Cassette: Shimano 17t
  • Pedals: Plastic PC

Components:

  • Saddle: Velo
  • Post: Zoom
  • Bars: Volume Hipster
  • Stem: Zoom 110mm
  • Headset: Resist Integrated
  • Brakeset: Tektro Auriga Pro. Dual piston hydraulic brake
  • Resist EBB
  • Grips: Volume Enns

*images and build info from Volume site

Unicycles are fixed gears too!

Unicycles are fixed gears too!

When people started doing tricks on track bikes, many of the tricks were more akin to artistic cycling and flatland bmx tricks than what we see today.  Some people thought that the tricks looked graceful, or maybe they liked the esthetic of the track bike itself.  Some argued that they liked the tricks because they were “harder to do than on a freewheel bike” while others just wanted to ride to the spot where they could turn tricks- then be able to ride home in much more comfort than say, on a bmx bike.  As people got the hang of riding backwards circles, wheelies, skids and pogos- stairs became the next obstacle worth tackling.  Bikes kept getting broken as people got more comfortable on these bastardized track bikes and conversions, so they evolved.

Now ledges, drops, ramps and rails are all par for the course in today’s fixed gear freestyle.  What many of the up and comers are riding in the street are a far cry from what we were riding 10+ years ago (or heck- even 3 years ago.)  I love seeing this evolution take place- not only in the parts used on the bikes and in frame design, but in a bunch of people recognizing that bikes are a good way to get around.  It’s redefining urban cycling to a certain degree.  Whether that’s good or bad, the jury is still out.

I love anything that gets people on two wheels- but then what about those on one wheel?  Unicycling is by no means new.  Neither is off-road unicycling.  I’d say it’s been around longer than fixed gear freestyle.  It’s a sport that doesn’t get much respect.  Personally, I can’t ride a unicyle.  I’ve tried a few times- thinking I should be able to pick it up, but it hasn’t clicked.  It makes it easy for me to write off as something for circus people, or for those that live in Portland.  They seem a bit like a scooter (Fun to ride unless your friends see you on it)  PS- Is there a custom unicyle builder in Portland yet?

That said- I can’t believe the riding that is done in this edit.  I’m not so sure I should even call it riding- it’s like watching a trials demo.  I don’t know any other sport that could use some of the spots that they are besides trials… or parkour.  It blows my mind.  So here’s to the unicyclists out there. And if you can do one of those “Maxwhip” tricks- RIGHT FUCKING ON.

NAUCC 2010 from Max Schulze on Vimeo.