- July 14, 2014
In 1579 Sir Francis Drake landed in northern California and dubbed it New Albion. In 1976, Jack McAuliffe founded the now defunct New..
- July 10, 2014
Housed in a former candle factory in Queens, New York is one of America’s oldest manufacturing traditions. Worksman Cycles is a..
- July 9, 2014
Sean McElroy had only known about the Civic Center Crit for a week, maybe two, before coming to claim the dog tags in the men’s road..
- June 4, 2014
Cyclocross bikes have long been a choice for the rider looking for a versatile machine—enjoyable on long road rides, capable on trails..
- June 2, 2014
Contents Include: Utilitarian Bicycles in China, City Report: Washington DC, Gallery: SF Courier Portraits, Redhook Crit Women’s Race,..
Hey Kids, Origin8 is giving away a Fix8 frame, with the requisite brand promotion, of course. So here’s the goods. Winner announced June 20th.
Flasks make great gifts, even if most everyone who wants one already has one. Check this 6 oz printed Ted Baker flask featuring an early racing motif.
Ruckus Composites is perhaps the gold standard in carbon repair services with a couple of thousand frames per year getting a new life through their shop. Sometimes a frame is left behind… and now Ruckus has decided to repair, repaint and raffle off the bikes for charity. The first two frames will be raffled in support of Presented By Let’s Race Bikes (PBLRB), an Oregon based project dedicated to supporting and enabling elite female cyclists to compete on a national level. Tickets are $25 each or 3 for $60, with all proceeds going to PBLRB. Winners and totals announced on June 17th.
Over the past few years our hometown of Pittsburgh has become quite the cycling city, and the CIty of Pittsburgh is looking for a new Bicycle Pedestrian Coordinator to usher in the next era. We have a beautiful city with a strong and established bicycle advocacy non-profit and a progressive administration that is fully embracing bike/ped improvement as the future of urban living. This is a unique opportunity for the right person to make a mark on Pittsburgh and change the streetscape for decades to come. Check out the job requirements and get your application in by June 24th.
Want. The All-City JYD is a rare bird these days, a rim brake mountain bike platform without any of the bells and whistles that make modern bikes heavy, complicated and expensive. It goes back to the days of old, one bike for most everything, a simple and bombproof build with a single gear, rim brakes and no provision for suspension. Put some knobby tires in it to thrash in the woods, put some big slick tires on for the city, add fenders for the adventure. It doesn’t have fork mounted bottle bosses. It doesn’t have disc tabs. It doesn’t have a press-fit bottom bracket or a tapered steerer tube or any woven plastic. It does have two wheels, a fancy 5-piece segmented fork, and enough of that old-school mountain look to get my nostalgia meter going.
Is it a pure mountain bike? A giant BMX cruiser? Neither really, more a pure ripper for whatever you’ve got going on. It’s a modern take on the ’90s mountain bikes that make such good city rides, but with 29″ wheels for more getting rad. My personal favorite flavor of the month isn’t far off from this one, a rim brake single speed ‘cross build with riser bars and v-brakes, though I’d certainly welcome the larger tire clearance. Just 150 framesets slated for this year at about $550 from your local dealer.
Cyclist and graphic designer (which comes first?), Jennifer Beatty, is creating posters for the 100 days series using upcycled bike parts. Each poster is a rendition of various pop culture images, some a part of everyday culture and others more obscure fine art representations. The posters use bicycle materials pulled from the bicycle version of a “hooptie”, as Beatty defines,
1: A bicycle with at least one part dangling off that has duct tape holding it together and/or makes you aware of its impending arrival by the volume of the squeal coming from the petrified brake pads or lack there of.
2: A Huffy or Murray mountain bike with three broken spokes and the shift lever unattached, commonly ridden by New York City food delivery riders.
One poster is made every day for 100 days, which will end on July 15th. You can see each new poster as it is created here.
The SF Composite High School Mountain Bike Team so gets it. Bravo.
View the original Raphia Rice Cakes video.
As the creators of Kale Or Be Killed put it, “Stephanie and Laura are all about being healthy, happy, and their baddest, fittest selves. These healthy hustlas are here to make sure staying in shape and eating healthy make you feel like you’re getting away with murder, without hurting a fly.
Keepin’ it so real, it’s organic.”
Part of their mission is to introduce readers to various (vegan) individuals who offer something in the way of living full, healthy, active lives. (Disclaimer: I was one of them). They recently interviewed duathlete, Laura Kline, where she talks about her perspectives related to eating, training and living.
What race are you most proud of?
Winning the 2012 Duathlon World Championship in Nancy, France. It was a great experience to achieve that result against the world’s best, and it was one of those days where everything just clicked. It felt amazing!
These Strider Championship events never cease to pull me out of a bad mood. Wee people kicking around on wee bikes in a competition setting. Love it.
Where do you live and what’s it like riding in your city?
I just emigrated from Louisville up to Columbus earlier this year. So far my rides have been recreational tours around the city while also dabbling in the local MTB trails with my fiance. Louisville was flatter than Columbus with a lot more riding in traffic, while Columbus has a fantastic network of bike trails through the city. The polo scene is also better and more invigorated here. I’m also still getting used to the level of biking infrastructure here and the convenience it provides – Louisville just got its first green ‘bike boxes,’ whereas, they’ve been around here for a while I’m told.
What was your favorite city to ride in, and why?
Chicago. Big buildings, stretch busses and bridges made for a welcome assortment of travel companions. Then hopping on the subway and doing it all again. Of course, renting a mountain bike for the day while on the Galapagos was also pretty awesome.
Why do you love riding in the city?
The state of zen it brings while taking the time to get where I’m going. The perspective you get while travelling by car, then by bike and finally by walking are always so drastically different … I enjoy the level of detail I can appreciate while on a bike and still get places quickly. It clears my head and calms my soul.
Matt Ruscigno, of Feel My Legs and Day In The Life, and his cohort, Sasha Perry, are in the middle of a fundraising campaign to help create more of their Day In The Life episodes/interviews of vegan athletes. They have showcased a number of cyclists in the series, who have offered great insight into high-level racing and nutrition.
The videos are professionally produced and cost a decent penny to make, hence the campaign. You can donate here and the incentives are pretty nice, including buttons, Purist water bottles, stickers, socks, nutritional consultation, an athlete of your choice in a video (YOU in a video!), etc. Only 14 days left to make this happen…help ‘em out!
Cycling Legalese is our online cycling law column from everyday cyclist and Chicago based injury lawyer, Brendan Kevenides.
Riding with friends is great, until you get accosted for riding with friends. Just what is the legalese about riding next to one another on the roadway?
Q:I had an angry driver accost us on a casual ride about taking up the whole road. We were in the rightmost lane, riding more or less with traffic, and two abreast. What are the laws on riding two abreast?
The law as it regards riding single file versus two abreast, a.k.a., riding next to each other, tends to reflect the frustration and sometimes hostility between those who like to use their bikes for transportation and exercise and those who think bikes belong on sidewalks or on limited use paths. In many places in the United States riding two abreast is legal; except when it isn’t. In some places it is explicitly prohibited. Unfortunately, it is difficult to provide a bright line rule. Much will depend on the law of the state you are in, the local ordinance of the town you are riding through (which may differ from the state’s vehicle code), the width of the roadway and the judgment of a police officer.
I recognize that this is not a satisfactory answer, but hopefully an explanation will offer some guidance.
The law in New York is as good an example as any of the “it depends” rule. Section 1234(b) of the New York Vehicle Code says:
Persons riding bicycles… upon a roadway shall not ride more than two abreast. Simple, right? You can ride two abreast but not three or more.
But the section continues: Persons riding bicycles upon a shoulder, bicycle… lane, or bicycle… path, intended for the use of bicycles… may ride two or more abreast if sufficient space is available.
The section adds, however, that when passing another user of the bike path or lane, cyclists must do so while riding single file.
Okay, but wait: Persons riding bicycles… upon a roadway shall ride… single file when being overtaken by a vehicle.
So it appears that while street riding in New York, you may ride two abreast; that is until a driver feels that you are in the way and wants to pass. Then you must revert to single file. Got that?
Let’s take a look at Illinois.
As in New York, the Illinois legislature giveth, then it taketh away.
The relevant state statute says: Persons riding bicycles or motorized pedal cycles upon a roadway shall not ride more than 2 abreast, except on paths or parts of roadways set aside for their exclusive use.
That is the give. You can ride two abreast. Now for the take: Persons riding 2 abreast shall not impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic and, on a laned roadway, shall ride within a single lane…
This does not seem quite as onerous as the New York law. Still, there is much left open to interpretation so as to erode the confidence of cyclists when riding two abreast. What exactly does it mean to “impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic?” What traffic? Motor vehicle traffic? Bicycle traffic? And who gets to decide? Generally it will be a police officer who makes the controlling judgment call. The officer will likely look to another section of the Illinois Motor Vehicle Code for guidance which states that a person on a bicycle riding: at less than the normal speed of traffic at the time and place and under the conditions then existing shall ride as close as practicable and safe to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway.
To the extent that the left most rider riding two abreast is not as close as practicable and safe to the right side of the road, he or she may be subject to a traffic citation.
But wait, it gets even trickier in the Land of Lincoln. Some towns/municipalities have taken it upon themselves to regulate this issue. This means that during a single ride the law may change as you pedal across town boundaries. For example, let’s say you would like to begin a group ride with your buddies in Chicago and head north into the suburbs, a very common practice for club riders here. At the beginning of the ride in the City you may ride two abreast, so long as you are not impeding traffic. However, as you reach the North Shore suburb of Winnetka you must “ride single-file, except on paths or parts of roads which are set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles.” To the best of my knowledge, cyclists are not warned of a change in the law as they enter Winnetka. Perhaps a sign that says something like, “Welcome To Winnetka; Now Get In Single File” would alert cyclists to adjust their group riding formation accordingly. Absent that, it seems that before setting out with a buddy on a ride in Illinois, you must research the local ordinance of each town you plan to pass through. Because what’s more fun than preparing for a bike ride by doing a whole bunch of legal research?
California has taken an arguably novel approach to this issue. Its state code says this about two abreast vs. single file riding: Nothing. The California vehicle code does not address the matter at all. So that means you can ride two, three, four, five, etc. abreast in that state, right? Not so fast. As we saw in Illinois, some municipalities in California have taken it upon themselves to address the matter.
For example, a local ordinance in Torrance states: Persons operating bicycles upon a roadway shall not ride more than two (2) abreast except on paths or parts of roadways set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles.
In that city cyclists may ride two abreast at most. As for the rest of the state, the vehicle code’s silence on the issue does not necessarily equate to smooth traveling through the legal landscape. In 2010, The Press Democrat, a California newspaper, documented conflicts between bicyclists and drivers in Sonoma County. The paper asked a member of the California Highway Patrol to offer his take on drivers’ complaints of cyclists riding next to each other rather than single file. Somewhat predictably the patrolman noted that the state’s vehicle code (like that in every other state) requires cyclists to ride as close to the right edge of the road as practicable. However, he admitted that “Riders do not have to ride single file in CA.”
But… He interprets the law as requiring, “If traffic traveling in the same direction approaches them [the cyclists], then they must move as far to the right as practicable. So, even if it is only one car that comes up behind them, if there is a rider that is alongside another, and in the traffic lane, they must pull in behind or ahead of the rider. If they can safely ride abreast in a marked bike lane, they would not have to do this.” In short, cyclists not riding single file where a car wishes to pass are subject to citation.
So, what is the takeaway from this sampling of the law in three big states with major metropolitan areas? It is that unless riding two or more abreast is explicitly outlawed (I’m looking at you Winnetka, IL), you may do so without getting hassled by the police so long as there are no drivers who wish to pass. If a driver going in the same direction wishes to pass the best practice to avoid legal trouble is to revert to single file.
Cycling Legalese Question Submission Form:
Nothing contained in this column should be construed as legal advice. The information contained herein may or may not match your individual situation. Also, laws differ from place to place and tend to change over time. No reader should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information presented herein without seeking the advice of an attorney in the relevant jurisdiction. This column is meant to promote awareness of a general legal issue. As such, it is meant as entertainment. It does not create an attorney-client relationship between the author and the reader.
In the world of fundraising, this is how it’s done. No Kickstarter, GoFundMe or IndieGoGo campaign, but some real world shenanigans with considerable effort and sacrifice. These dudes from London checked out one of the Boris bike-share rides, which are notoriously cumbersome (50 pounds!), and rode (or at least tried) those suckers 190km through the first stage of the Tour de France. Along the way (and still to this day) people texted “HARD65 £3″ to 70070, which then sent the money to Macmillan Cancer Support. They are still taking donations and this feat will be repeated in some way next year as well.
Please consider donating to the campaign through this site.
Enter to win one of five reflective sticker packs from Fiks:Reflective. These vibrant retroreflective stickers are designed to allow you to be as creative [or boring] as you want. They enable you to make an almost endless number of patterns and their microscopic embedded glass beads will reflect light to help keep you seen out there at night. 52 tessellating reflective stickers per pack. Click here to enter.
Single strap messenger bags were the epitome of urban cycling chic for well over a decade, but now is the era of the backpack. Backpacks are more comfortable and more practical for most anyone besides working couriers, with small day packs like this rolltop from Vaya growing in favor.
Vaya is a one woman shop out of the borough of Queens in New York City, handcrafting messenger bags and backpacks out of recycled canvas and surplus Sunbrella sailboat fabric. The Blue Lagoon Rolltop is a compact day bag measuring just 9.5” x 5.5” x 15” closed, featuring an interior laptop sleeve, expanding front pocket, minimalist straps and a u-lock or bottle holder. The bag is made from waterproof Sunbrella fabric, with an 18 oz vinyl coated liner and seatbelt webbing straps, with an attractive blue color scheme incorporating repurposed tubes on the body. The Blue Lagoon has just enough space for the work commute essentials like tools, a laptop, and an extra layer but not much else—you won’t be stopping by the grocery store on the way home from work unless you don’t mind things hanging out the top of the bag. Rolltop closures are nice because of the way they allow you to overload when necessary, with the extra long strap helping to keep cargo in place but otherwise swinging around a bit more than I’d like when walking. The outer expanding pocket is nice for easy access to lights, gloves and your phone, and doesn’t interfere with the interior capacity, but is not totally waterproof like the rest of the bag.
Reflective patches on the sides and strap are always welcome, as is the reinforced base for long wear and added protection when putting the bag down on wet ground. I like the minimalist straps, you’re simply never going to fill this bag up enough to warrant heavy pads, and the seatbelt webbing was comfortable even with just a t-shirt. The side bottle holder is great for keeping liquids far away from electronics along for the ride, and handy for carrying a u-lock otherwise. Some of the stitching isn’t as perfect looking as some other bags I’ve seen, but overall construction is solid and clearly well thought out by someone who rides and cares about the bags leaving her shop. I expect to get many years out of this bag from Vaya. Available for $195, or in a single color as the Simple Rolltop for $175.
This morning I worked out at the gym very early before work. I often get groceries afterward as the stores have fewer customers and the shelves are usually better stocked. There are two supermarkets along the way home. The nicer organic one across the street from the gym had yet to open when I left. My metabolism after this routine endeavor requires calories and lots of them.
Today, I craved something sweet and fatty like ice cream. I recently rode a double century and needed to replace some valuable nutrients expended. I recalled that Greg Lemond ate ice cream all the time during his career, earning world championship jerseys and Tours of France victories. I was getting a serious case of the hangries, angry because of hunger.
I inched past the cookies, staring at each whatever ounce bag of sweet deliciousness, believing them to be the worst option in my state.
I stood fixedly at the frozen food section, wondering when a half gallon of ice cream turned into 1.5 quart tubs. I became more angry. The ice cream flavor selection was limited to healthy stuff. (Healthy junk food? I know where the f%!# produce is! I already have an apple.) I wanted triple fudge brownie explosion with marshmallows, nuts and a million calories of sugar. Or something similar to it. Low fat, gelato and blandness all meekly stared blankly back from the other side of the frosty glass.
I was still hungry, getting even angrier. I wandered around the aisles like a tiger in a cage. Resigning, I knew what I had to do. I understood, sadly, after a lengthy deliberation where I had to go. I walked past the produce again to get a yogurt in the dairy section I ignored earlier because I wanted ICE CREAM!
I eventually chose a fancy blood orange with vanilla nonsense, putting it into the basket for later consumption at the lair. I got it because they, unlike other brands, sponsored some cycling event. I felt compelled to get that one rather than the one with the crunchy sugar bombs on top to be mixed upon opening.
This was my dilemma as I went food shopping. While I am very content with what I finally selected, I am aware this will not be the last struggle. The season from summer racing to winter cross to off-season working out lasts 10 months of the year.
I’m reposting a writing by a Charlotte lawyer, who describes a bit of what it feels like to be on the vulnerable end of an impatient driver’s bumper, imploring us not to just argue for our right to be in the road, but to also check our impatience continuously. Most of the time, as she describes, our impatience manifests as mere frustration, but in our vehicles it can become deadly. Well said.
What I want to talk about is the value of human life and how people can take it so lightly. I want to talk about the instant rage people feel when confronted with what could at most be considered an annoyance. Let’s talk about the complete intolerance of anything that stands in our way for even a fraction of a second. We don’t just see this on the road between bikes and cars; we see it in the grocery store on a busy Saturday, we see it waiting in line in the airport. People are angry and frustrated. No one is breathing. We’re all holding our breaths and trying to get to the next thing more quickly.
In most areas of our lives, this anxious rushing has little consequence other than to make our lives rushed and anxious, and maybe annoy our families. On the road, however, it can kill someone.
Well….this isn’t good, but should also be kept in context. Chicago bike-share program, Divvy, posted a first year loss of $148,000, but of a program this size isn’t really THAT much, still, people seem to hate bikes and want any excuse to write them off. All startups tend to have problems the first year, however, and projections for next year look more encouraging, if Divvy can work through some red-tape deal problems with their partner companies. Divvy is also looking into corporate sponsorship to help offset costs and remedy this loss quickly. Most bike-shares are initially partnered with corporate backing (Indy is buoyed by the Pacers), and this could be an easy solution for Divvy’s issues.
Chicago’s bike-share woes certainly aren’t plagued by low use, as ridership broke records over the Memorial Day weekend, so I’m suspecting it will continue on strongly as long as the business deals can be worked out quickly. I have yet to hear of similar problems in other cities, which is encouraging for more programs to be launched elsewhere.
Cyclocross bikes have long been a choice for the rider looking for a versatile machine—enjoyable on long road rides, capable on trails and light singletrack, able to handle a light tour and near perfect for the committed medium to long distance commuter. As cyclocross racing has grown the selection of bikes under the ‘cross umbrella is wider than ever, from thoroughbred race machines to traditional steel frames and performance commuters.
Trickle down tech is at the core of most any consumer industry, and the Fuji Feather CX 1.1 takes advantage of what has become the new normal at the high end of spec and brings it to a $1220 complete bike ready for the 9-5 and your next mixed surface adventure. The butted aluminum frame features a post mount disc brake, a tapered headtube with a 1 1/2” lower bearing, and a press-fit BB86 bottom bracket. The carbon blade fork has a durable aluminum steerer and dropouts, and a post mount disc brake as well. Single fender eyelets adorn both the frame and fork, with seatstay mounts for a rear rack and a pair of bottle mounts for when the miles start to rack up. Geometry wise the CX 1.1 borrows heavily from Fuji’s race bikes with a few tweaks to fit larger volume tires that ends up with an 11 mm longer wheelbase overall.
The component spec of the Feather CX 1.1 is nothing much to write home about—a 9-speed Shimano Sora drivetrain and industry standard Avid BB5r brakes with 160 mm rotors do the name brand duties, with no-name Vera wheels and house brand Oval Concepts parts otherwise finishing off the bike. The 50/34 chainrings and 11-32 cassette provide a well thought out, wide gear range and while 9-speed isn’t the newest in new it has proven a durable choice with some long time adherents. The wheels are an odd mix of bladed spokes and mountain bike width 19 mm rims — very likely to stay true over many a pothole, but sluggish feeling on a long ride. Disc brakes come with their own weight penalty, coupled with overbuilt wheels the Fuji Feather CX 1.1 weighs 23.9 lbs. Contrary to the spec sheet our 58 cm review bike came with 170 mm cranks, definitely short for the people riding this bike and something I would have asked a dealer to swap before purchase. The blacked out, gloss on matte finish on the frame and fork is hard to beat, it’s a shame the Oval components don’t match.
City streets, light trails, dirt roads—the Feather CX 1.1 has the person that can’t keep their bike clean in mind. Add a full set of fenders and it makes a solid choice for an everyday vehicle that should last the long haul, stock it is more than up for hitting that dirt road loop a dozen miles outside of town. The geometry isn’t dumbed down in the name of relaxed commuting, giving the bike the handling character so many love about cyclocross bikes.
The frameset is where you should be spending your money, and the Feather CX 1.1 gives you a platform to grow with over the years. The press fit BB86 bottom bracket makes the bike compatible with any number of high end cranksets out there, and while I had no problems throughout the test I’m not the only one still skeptical of the benefits of press fit bottom brackets. Post mount brakes are welcome, even if I had issues with the stock spacers deforming during setup. I do wish that the full-length rear brake housing had another cable stop along the top tube to curb what is an otherwise annoying rattle without a loop of electrical tape, even if it’s an easy DIY solution.
Ride it now, keep your eyes peeled for deals on the easy weight saving upgrades and pick up a racier groupset a few years down the line when the original Sora drivetrain is worn out. While neither the lightest nor the snappiest accelerating bike out there, for the non-racer the Fuji Feather CX 1.1 proves a solid disc brake ‘cross commuter and weekend explorer. The Feather CX 1.1 is available in five sizes from 48 – 60 cm, with a lower spec’d $1000 CX 1.3 also available.
Pinkbike posted a story on the Philadelphia pump track, “Pumpadelphia”, (and I can’t help but sing, “Flipadelphia!”) which came about by the impetus of the Philadelphia Mountain Bike Association, which is pretty awesome considering most mountain bikers aren’t engaged with inner city youth, or even inner city riding. But the coalition between the PMBA, corporate sponsors, city departments, various individuals and, most importantly, the kids themselves, turned this piece of public land into a maze of adrenaline-inducing turns and jumps.
Now, to convince them for the need of a pumptrack in my backyard.
“You’ll notice that I put the beginner track higher up in the park than anything else.” Jim says. “That’s because in my books, the children are what is going to keep our sport and culture alive going forward. When they ask “why are we higher than the big track?” I tell them that they are more valuable. They are the most important. We share our property with the kids and give them highest ground.” The kids are the centerpiece of this effort and the kids responded well. Saturdays were dig days and it was common to see 40+ kids at the site ready to get busy with brooms, shovels and anything else they could use to move and shape dirt. Power Corps PHL sent dozens of volunteers to the site as well. The program provides environmental stewardship initiatives as well as the City of Philadelphia’s youth workforce development and violence prevention priorities. Many of the Power Corps volunteers were locals and are itching to get on bike after lending a hand at the track.