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Community Bikes

22 Oct

We all have them, I think, at least in my community.  Community bikes; bikes that don’t really belong to anyone in particular but are a conglomeration of parts culled from many and shared by few.  Somehow they end up in one persons garage for far too long.

Dug has probably spent the most time of anyone that I know riding community bikes.  As a matter of fact I bet it’s been over 5 years since he’s ridden anything else.

Well, I have a community bike that I dare say will never end up in Dug’s garage.  Part Rick S., part Jamie P., part Forrest, part me and I’m sure there are parts on it from Chris Fox.  Total cost to build=$12 for bar tape.  Yeah, yeah it’s a single speed with STI shifters, whatever.

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The frame that belongs to Rick S has been hanging around in Jamie’s garage for years with parts bolted on it at random.  Whenever something wouldn’t fit on someone else’s bike Jamie would hang it here.

You know what?  It totally kicks ass.  I rode it for the first time today and it is fast.  I’m going to race it on Saturday but after that anyone that wants to borrow it for a day or year is welcome to it.

Do you have a community bike in your garage?  Want one?  Need a new community?

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2nd Annual Gooseberry 100K

23 Nov

I can’t believe it has been one year since I posted about the Inaugural Gooseberry 100k.

For 2009 the 100k will take place on January 31st. For all the folks headed down to Old Pueblo two weeks later this should be a great training ride/race.

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Last year nobody finished the full 100k although Kenny Jones and Kris Holley gave it a good run. This year the course will be slightly different.

We will camp Friday night on the North rim by the windmill and the ride/race will start at 9:30 a.m. We will NOT be descending the North rim like last year as it proved a bit dangerous but will instead be doing the Gooseberry Mesa loop first and in a counter clockwise direction.

I will post a gpx file with the route within the next month and everyone will be on their own for route finding and support. I highly recommend you get a mapping GPS or have a ride partner that has one and knows how to use it and doesn’t care that you you are tagging along.

The following map is just a preliminary idea of what we are doing. It does not include the section through Apple Valley to the JEM Trail and has the North rim drop that we will NOT be doing.

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The basic route is pretty straight forward. After doing Gooseberry counter clockwise the route will travel through Apple Valley and then cross the highway and hook into Goulds, Jem, Rim trail which will also be done counter clockwise with the Jem descent being done twice, yahoo!

The route will then head towards Rockville and eventually across Bridge Road and up the nasty climb back onto Gooseberry finishing at the windmill.

I think it should be close to 100k and 6-8 hours of ride time. Of course, I could be totally wrong which will make for a great adventure.

Any questions?

Slow Build Movement

6 Nov

Not entirely unlike the slow food movement, at least my definition. Take your time, enjoy every tasty morsel, buy local if you can, practice restraint and above all no shortcuts.

Sure I could I make it happen a lot faster but then it would be over and the satisfaction of doing things right and just the way they should be done would be lost forever. Well, maybe I’m being a bit dramatic.

However, there’s nothing quite like a fresh chase and face to make things come together right. Not entirely necessary but it sure feels and looks good.

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Troy from Maine, the service manager and magician at SLC Bike and one time mayor of York, Maine, helped me out. Actually, he did everything as he doesn’t trust me with so much as an allen wrench. You should see him cringe when I pick up a screwdriver.

Here’s the Jabberwocky ready for pressing:

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It’s going to be worth the slow wait. I can already see that sweet white custom stem from Sabrosa Cycles sitting on the head tube.

Cobwebs

24 Aug

My legs have been an easy target for a daily dose of spider silk for the last couple of weeks. The cobwebs had wrapped themselves so tight around my thighs I could barely get my leg over my top tube today.

I started pedaling and could feel the effects of being off the bike for a couple of weeks. It took about an hour but the cobwebs slowly started breaking and falling away. It felt good, real good.

Riding my bike not only busted through the cobwebs on my legs it also cleaned out a few that had been accumulating in my grey matter.

Tonight after my ride I realized that I’m functioning better than I have for a while. My brain is clear, my legs feel good, my body invigorated, my fingernails are growing again and my eczema has all cleared up. I’m telling you, riding a bike is good medicine. Oh, and I’m writing a blog post. Riding a bike could be the end-all, be-all.

I’m going to ride every day this week. That’s my goal. It’s going to be a great week.

Rules To Dork By

5 Feb

Bike dork that is. I don’t want to discuss any other type of dork you might be into. Just your bike. As a matter of fact, just your mountain bike.

I’ve been losing my focus lately. After seeing Jamie’s new ride my inner bike geek has been fighting to get out and I will not allow it.

I got like a zillion e-mails, calls, texts and comments (OK, maybe 2) from people wanting advice and rules to help them in their quest to get their dork on. I was going to ask dug to write this post for me as pretty much everything I know about getting my dork on I learned from him. He is without peer.

It looks as if dug is breaking some of the dork rules in this picture but he borrowed that bike from someone just before the race.

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Here they are, your top ten rules to dork by:

  1. Never buy anything. Beg, borrow or steal what you need.
  2. Your frame should be steel. Aluminum is OK in a pinch.
  3. Rim brakes only. V-brakes or canti’s, I don’t care. I’m no snob.
  4. No carbon fiber, titanium, ceramic, bamboo or other exotic material unless you made it yourself.
  5. Square taper bottom bracket. Your local shop gives ’em away.
  6. No suspension.
  7. Mismatched water bottle cages, skewers, tires, brake levers, etc. For God’s sake don’t mismatch your pedals or grips that would just be stupid.
  8. I forget what 8 was for.

I could only come up with 8, whatever. You might argue that my list is incomplete. I didn’t even mention gears, derailleurs or clipless pedals, that woulda been like 11 rules. Besides, like I said, I’m no snob and while it’s possible to be even dorkier than this list suggests I do not recommend it. If you take it upon yourself to implement more rules than the ones above you run the risk of being labeled a bike dork geek. You don’t want that. That would be bad.

Coffee With Jesus

25 Dec

Perfect Christmas Eve Day. I realize it’s Christmas today but I’m running a day behind.

We yanked the kids outta bed this morning at 5 a.m. and went downtown to the Salt Lake Mission and brewed around 10 gallons of coffee for the people. If my girls learn nothing else from me they’ll have learned how to make some good coffee. An invaluable skill that should serve them well throughout their lives and ensure that they take good care of me when I’m too old to do it myself.

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I then got out for a nice ride on the Monkey right before the cold front and big storm rolled in.

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If you have a good eye you’ll notice the carbon post on the Monkey. At first you may think I’m geekin but really, what could be more dork than a carbon post on a 10 pound Monkey frame? And yes, those are disc brakes but they’re not hydros just cable actuated and 2nd hand at that.

More about Christmas Eve and Christmas a bit later and maybe some video if I can get those liability release forms signed.

Merry Christmas!

Get Your Dork On!

10 Dec

Rick S. got me thinking about next year. My plan for next year as far as my bike goes is to get my dork on.

Getting your dork on should not be confused with getting your geek on.

If you are easily hypnotized by shiny pieces of carbon fiber or titanium bike gizmos and consider yourself an early adopter of bike technology, chances are you don’t need any help getting your geek on. If you’re still unsure of what I’m talking about I suggest you pay a visit to Jamie Pogue’s garage. No one gets their geek on like Jamie. I mean that as a compliment. I must pause here to thank Jamie for all the wonderful hand-me-downs from his garage that have allowed me to get my geek on in my own little way.

Getting your dork on is the opposite of Jamie’s garage. It’s your D. I. to your Nordy’s. It’s your Huckabee to your Romney, your Accordion Hero to your Guitar Hero.

Last season, geek on:

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Next season, dork on:

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To the untrained eye the above bikes may look similar but they couldn’t be more different. I’ve loved the custom, made just for me, frame from Walt Works. As a matter of fact I’ve owned a couple Walt Works and they rock.

Next season though, I’m going with a 5 year old totally stock 2nd owner Kona Unit. It even has a big dent in the downtube. You may not notice all the geekiness on the Walt Works but its there, from the carbon fiber hydraulic brake levers to the carbon cranks and titanium seat post. Zero carbon on the Kona in the second picture, no titanium either. I’ll be using rim brakes in lieu of hydros and my brake levers don’t match.

I cant’ wait. Join me in getting your dork on.