Tuesday, September 29, 2009

High Fives all around!

Here's a vid of one of my favorite NYC passtimes. The taxi hailing high five:

Just beatiful. I'm actually pretty glad to see the positive reaction from the majority of peds there. I never really looked back to see if they were stoked or crying 'hand rape'.

Speaking of high fives, BIG HIGH FIVES to Morgan for WINNING HELLTRACK 2009!

He stayed in second through the first two motos, advancing onto the final. Still fresh and pumped, he rethought his strategy for the final race. Using Newton's third law he emerged from the first corner in his chosen line and blasted on home to Victory. And WHAT A VICTORY! $70 cash, a Skull Skates Hoodie, A T shirt, A BMX DVD, Cruiser Bars, and a freakin TROPHY! Daaaamn son.. Unsanctioned racing is where its at. Lets see if next weekend's return to Vanier will be as fun.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Thursday Mornin Vids

Neither of these are particularly new, but I feel I should post em up

Skero | FussVomGas

MC SpandX |Performance

BFF Trailer

SLC Pirate VS Ninjas ride

2nd annual Ride Like a Pirate Day : Pirates vs Ninjas from zed bailey on Vimeo.

..and a classic vid recently sent to me by Wyatt

I love that one. I gotta work on my cargotrack stoppies.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


This Sunday, Don from Ride On Again is putting on Helltrack. Racing should get going around 1. I have one knobby tire on the FBM already, but might have to find another by Sunday. Now, are SPD pedals allowed... and can Lyle ride the Kitten Chopper?

Monday, September 21, 2009

Mein Velomobil

amphibian velomobile from Jan Jan on Vimeo.

I love the idea of amphibious bikes. You can't see it, but the guy is eating a whole chicken inside that thing.

Wait.. 2:15 in this vid:

Also, check out this big sleeved street trials master from Calgary!

For some reason it reminds me of this classic Immortal video:

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Danny's commute aka. GNFU

Ahh, a commercial featuring our favorite trials rider. Pretty good slow mo emo roll. But would he race a tallbike in the dark at Strathkona? GNFU

Friday, September 11, 2009

Stoked on Being Blazed

Local talent and local spots. Get your Seylynn and your New West on.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

The Naked Experience

Now that I'm back on the mainland, I should probably recap my recent bike building work/vacation before it is too far in the past.

Working at Naked bikes was an absolutely incredible experience for me. Not only because I was working under an idol of mine, but because I got to live (in my van) just outside of the shop. I was literally eating, sleeping, and breathing bike building for a month. In my last post I think I mentioned how much mountain biking goes on on Quadra. They are blessed to have an agreement with the forestry people where they can make as many trails as they want providing they do not publish a map, and they do not build permanent structures. This of course doesn't mean they can't bring teeter totters and other wooden structures into the woods. They just can't attach them to the trees.

During one of the rides, Sam proposed a single speed rigid 29er build off. Just $300 in parts from the Norco catalog, no paint, may the best bike win. Honestly, this got me pretty hyped. I wouldn't even have considered building a 29er if it hadn't been put out there. I started thinking about it more and more. I eventually priced out the parts, and used BikeCAD to figure out the dimensions.

Suddenly, all my big wheeled hopes were dashed. Andrea ran into the shop and said that we'd be building a bike for Shimano Canada. Due in two weeks! We were knee deep in Steel Wool semi custom cyclocross frames at the time and even the end of those bikes didn't seem to be on the horizon. During the next few meals we discussed the direction we wanted to take the Shimano bike.

Shimano wanted another city bike using Alfine, but this time they wanted it to be FASTER. Originally the parts were going to be all black, then all silver, then we received boxes of mismatched silver and black Alfine groups from Shimano, and the rep didn't have a good answer for us. They only thing they wanted was that the bike should be white.

We sketched out a few designs. Curved tubes were in order, as well as aggressive looking geometry. Over the next few days we hashed out a design to be somewhere between a 90s pursuit bike, and a quote cafe racer unquote. Of course, we didn't get started on it until halfway through the two week deadline.

Heres what we started with on Monday Morning:

So, It looks fairly normal in that diagram, but I'll tell you what's going on.

First, the top tube is bent once. Secondly, the seat stays are bent twice. The headtube is a custom machined and silver brazed integrated system, in that it has 45° surfaces internally to hold the anglular cartridge bearings. Then we made a crazy fork crown to match up with it and give it a blocky solid look:

Sam has this thing against slotted dropouts with disc brake tabs, and he was fresh out of eccentric bottom brackets. Since the bike has no derailleur we had to figure out SOME way to tension the chain. We were joking around about making turnbuckle chain stays, and then decided WHY NOT!

We decided that the stock Shimano rims were boring, and ordered some super deep white B43s from Velocity. I had to get Mighty Riders Vancouver to cut us some shorter straight pull spokes in order to build these wheels. They didn't have a full set, so they sent me a bunch of scraps basically (different types and gauges, all cut to the right lengths). It made the build very confusing, as I had to separate all the spokes to get the thickest ones in the right spots on the wheel so that it would be strong enough.

..and here's what the bike looked like during a dry test build to check the chain tensioning system (which worked amazingly btw):

What's also amazing that we made it that far in 5 days!

On the weekend Sam spent some SERIOUS time in the paint booth, and layed down some super gloss white on the frame. Here it is as I left it.

More photos on Flickr

I never got to see it, but in the next couple of days, Sam's artist friend was going to hand detail the frame and wheels in black and silver paint pens to give it some more zazz. (note: this never turned out, so the bike stayed totally white and is on display like this in Montreal right now)

I'm also pretty glad that its got a lot of my design cues in it, and that I did a lot of the work in getting it together. Its been a really fun project to work on, and hopefully Shimano Canada sends it to Shimano USA for the big Interbike trade show in Las Vegas next month.

Another project I worked on while I was there, was a cargo conversion front end for a track or road bike. Sounds weird I know. It looks weird too:

So far it has been tested up to 190lbs. I kept the trail low (20mm) so that changing the amount of weight on the front end would affect the steering less. I used the same fork blades that I would have used on my 29er had it materialized. Its got a good combination of TIG, silver and brass holding it together. And yes, that is an 8" rotor=]

I don't really know how to wrap this post up other than to thank Naked Bicycles and Design for giving me the oportunity to work at their shop. I should also mention that right now Sam is heading to Battle Mountain Nevada to defend his title as the world's fastest cyclist. Having trained with him for the past month (and gotten dropped on every hill Quadra Island had to offer) I'm sure he'll do just fine.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

3rd place in B, and New Bike Day photo!

Since Brandon says that without pics, this bike did not exist, I am calling this my new bike day post. Scandium Brodie Romax B-Team, Ritchey wheels and carbon fork, Ultegra 10 speed, and a bunch of free Race Face parts through Mighty. As he isn't planning on racing much cross this year, Mike Sidic came through big time with a pair of old XTR pedals, a Fizik saddle, and WTB Cross Wolf tires. All that's left is to build my tubular wheel set.

Brodie Romax B-Team

Now, on to the race! I got enough shit from certain people about considering starting the season in C's. There were good arguments either way, but in the end I chose to ride B. I registered early and didn't feel bad about taking front line for the start. I got the holeshot and came out of the first lap in front. However, by half way through the second lap, two dudes had blasted off the front and were gone for good.

While the course changed from last year, it was still very fun and very technical.I was neck and neck with Neils on his single speeded BH for a couple of laps. With the BH man in front on the first of two uphill hairpins in the forest, he dumped it and I squeezed past. After that, I was basically alone for the rest of the race. I felt like whatever gear I was in, it was either too slow or I couldn't spin fast enough.

I came through the finish line at one point to see 4 laps left on the board. Fuck, had it only been that long? Three guys were within sight behind me, and I felt like I didn't have much left in the tank. However, the next time through, the board showed 1 lap to go. Sweet relief! They'd switched it from 3 to 4 instead of 2 and didn't fix it until after I'd come through.

The forest section was awesome, in my honky-tonk opinion. For the last couple of laps, a guy in an EV kit kept catching up to me at the top of the run-up into the forest, but he was nowhere to be found by the high speed exit back to the flats. On that last lap, I knew that if I made it to the top of the run-up before him I was pretty much in the clear - or so I thought.

I made it through the forest all good. My 36/12 was proving to be too short on the last couple runs of the down hill section out of the forest. That, and a chasing pack of dudes, had me deciding to shift to the 50 for the first time in the race. (Note: if you don't have much experience with front derailleurs, don't fuck with them.) After spinning out a medium gear in the 36, I went for the 50. It shifted right over the big ring. Fuck. Luckily I stopped myself and shifted back down. Right over both rings to the inside. Fuck.

Fortunately the 50 caught the chain on my next attempt and I was thundering toward the finish with only four corners and a fun technical section to go. Remember, keep the hammer down all the way until the end. And come through for third place in your first B category cyclocross race. Hell yeah!

We saw good results from our friends in C as well: Haley took 2nd woman in her first race; Meat took 5th; Atkinstall 9th; Barber 12th. In the A/Masters race, Berry got a flat and Beckstead had a bio-mechanical. There were other Mighties racing but I can't remember how they did. In any case I think everyone had a good time, including a crew of hecklers. The next couple of races are out of town, either on the Island or in Washington. Hoping to make it out for those.