Monday, February 14, 2011

Another Trophy for the Collection

Adding to Lyle's Zoobomb 2008 and my Helltrack 2009 trophies, as well as the "bench warmer award" I got in Grade 8 football, I hereby present the 2011 St. Valentine's Massacre trophy. I have to make a plaque for Nick Berry and myself, so we can pass the trophy on to next year's winner. Full race recap on the Mighty blog.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Just a little pre-race inspiration...

While the clock ticks down to Morgan chasing the $500 gran prix in the annual Valentine's Day Massacre, here's a little Berg Cup hoon action courtesy of Speedhunters. Grab a coffee, turn your speakers way, way up, and be prepared to have to explain to your girlfriend why an Opel Manta is not necessarily the most feasible project car to own. See you at Crab Park!

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

These. are. the. brakes.

I hardly rode my BMX at all last year.

I even did some upgrades to it sometime last spring. New wide bars, new fork, and a new colour scheme. Still it didn't get ridden.

The bike just wasn't practical. I think I only commuted on it once or twice, and recall not giving myself enough time to really have fun with it.

I'm pretty sure that it was partly because Morgan and Nick convinced me to take the brake off. That really affected how I viewed the bike. Suddenly it just didn't seem as maneuverable. Sure, I learned to foot Jam skid it in 3 of the 4 positions.. but the rest of the brakeless experience just didn't seem as boosty or flowy as it is supposed to be.

I guess I never put enough hours into it to feel totally comfortable riding it like that. ..and it was tough, because I have to ride to spots. I suppose if I was living half a block from a skate park, it would be a different story.

Long story short, I decided to put the brake back on my BMX.

Its a nice little black anodized forged and CNC machined piece from Suelo (Fly's flatland brand). Its actually a front brake, and using it on the back of my bike was always a bit of a bodge. The knarp cutouts in the ends of each arm are designed such that the cable is actually meant to be stretched across it.

A rear brake would have slightly more 'hooked' notches for a straddle cable to pull up from the centre. In using this brake before, I always had to have a piece of bike tube over the straddle cable, acting as a safety to stop it from popping off the arms.

Thankfully, I found a piece of the original hardware that came with the brake. A cool little cable end barrel that fits in the arm, as it would be used on the front of a BMX. I was thinking I'd have to make my own version of it.

An Avid Rollamajig would be amazing.. but after looking at RideOn, OCB, and mighty.. I thought I would have to settle on a custom radiused V brake noodle.. Until Pat showed me the Flexie. (Pat Pending). Its just a section of Bowden cable, with a plastic sleeve, and some special end hardware.

Here's a shot of the brake hardware laid out on the bench:

You can see that the flexie is a bit lower profile than an already radius tightened V brake noodle. I actually shortened it down to half its original length, as I didn't think it was necessary. It all went together pretty quickly once I remembered which way the springs go in the Fly brake.

Here's the finished result:

I've got a good 7mm of clearance to the backside of the crank arm. The cable is anchored to the top tube by two zip ties. The spring tension has to be slightly higher on the non restricted arm, but they end up hitting the rim at the same time. The cable is fully lubed with Pedro's Synlube, and it feels amazing at the lever with the Speed dial tuned for maximum mechanical advantage. Even a certain lever 'feel' snob should be happy with it.

So I'm ready to get back into the kind of riding I like to do on this bike. Dry weather is nearly upon us.

Monday, February 07, 2011

Wade! Sign My Chest?!

Turns out I'm not the only one still riding these days.

Eric Lawrenuk at those jumps you've always had your eye on when riding up the Second Narrows Bridge on ramp, and then some Seymour downhill con Jordie Lunn. Thanks Khaled for the link.

Ross Measures at mtbville has a new edit up, street shralpin' with lots of local spots. I think I've watched his Gulevich video 20 times.

Ross also shot this little interview with Wade Simmons. Jodi is now carrying a sharpie in her mtb bag, if you know what I'm saying...

17 Questions: Wade Simmons - More Mountain Bike Videos

Strahan Loken shredding some classic west coast conditions on Vancouver Island, from Aaron Larocque. He's always got to get his Honda Element in there...

More fish-fryin' Strahan Loken. Mike Siemens, the best thing to come out of Abbotsford since Jose da Silva, likes this vid.

Lyle and I have known Mike since 2002 or something ridiculous like that. Yes, the Volkswagens. Mike's doing a blog post for every ride this year, aiming for 120 trail rides. He was recently caught wearing nicely contrasting colours - take note!

Photo by Ian Harker.

Now for some helmet cams... a clean run of Crazy Carpenter at the Woodlot in Maple Ridge: "old school skinnies and dorps to falt" from Dylan Sheffer.

And a recent video from Ladies Only on Fromme, where you can see the ridiculous additions Digger's done with the heron ponds.

New Old School from Mountain Goat on Vimeo.

And to finish, something not exactly local, but a good example of what can be done with a cheap camera and some DIY rigging.

Kodiak Alaska mountain biking mashup from Philip Tschersich on Vimeo.

Sunday, February 06, 2011



Indoor 4x

Woot! this event looks like 11 storeys of super fun.
Not nearly as big of a crowd as most redbull events however...