- February 28, 2014
When there is a party in the back alley of One on One Bicycle Studio, it is not to be missed. Over the years 115 N Washington St has become..
- February 19, 2014
Urban Velo’s new City Report will be an ongoing, reader-contributed segment that highlights cities around the world. We’ve..
- February 17, 2014
The following is a new reader-submitted feature we are piloting. We crafted the first one as a model for future contributions. Click here..
- February 3, 2014
Carl Schlemowitz founded Vicious Cycles in 1994, and has been building custom steel frames in picturesque upstate New York ever since. Like..
- January 27, 2014
Via Bicycle and proprietor Curtis Anthony are Philadelphia cycling fixtures. There’s no telling how many used bikes of all vintage have..
I’d rather see custom cargo bikes than branded mini cars rolling around an event any day. These cargo bike bars from Stolen Rum made their debut last month at Art Basel Miami Beach, handing out samples of their latest booze to party goers. The bikes started with Republic Socrates models with a custom fit fold out bar, signage and paint turning them into rolling bars. Good stuff, let’s picnic.
This story was forwarded to us from Sin City Portage:
SinCity Portage makes drops to Zappos HQ about 3-4 times a day! Everything from bags of candy to donuts to pizza gets delivered daily.
Back in Sept and Dec of 2013, two bikes in our fleet had been stolen! Now bike thieves are pond scum, the worst of the worst. And these are our work bikes, we make magic happen on our bikes!
Well unbeknownst to us, Shannon and Anna somehow got word of this and started a donation hat…
Where do you live and what’s it like riding in your city?
I live in San Juan, PR. Riding in the city it’s kind of dangerous. There is a big movement here for the past few years, specially with the fixed gear culture. Drivers are more conscious now about bicycles. As many cites in the world we still need a few bicycle lanes. A more friendly culture towards us, we will get there.
On the other hand I get to many places faster than in a car, since traffic it’s heavy. Gas is rising, that is the reason you get to see more bikes.
What was your favorite city to ride in, and why?
I lived at Barcelona, but at time I ride for sport at the woods, so I can’t say how it was to ride in the city.
Why do you love riding in the city?
I love riding in the city, because you get to see things you would never notice in “the bubble” thats the way I call cars. You park wherever you like, you don’t spend money on Gas, mechanics, parking, etc.
Check out www.cdbaby.com/cd/davidrosado
When I first met Dorothy Wong at the Kill Radio studio to be a guest on Bike Talk, I was blindsided. It was 10 a.m. on a Saturday. She was really, really excited about getting women on bikes and I was really, really hungover. I was under the impression that I was there to talk about the Bikery, a new bike collective that was opening in the San Fernando Valley; and about the latest misadventures of the local bike polo club (LABP)—but I had found myself in a small studio full of female cyclists in a conversation centered around making biking better for women and was pressed to share: What had gotten me so hung up on bikes?
“It’s very challenging, honestly, to get more women involved,” Wong, the longtime director of SoCalCross, would tell me years later, persisting in her mission. “There were many times I was the only woman racing cyclocross here in Southern California, so I had to race against the boys. There might be one or two or three other gals. A big field was five women. Now we’ve got maybe 50 women racing, 60 on a good day.”
Known to some as Dot, or even Dottie, these names hardly describe the woman who drives Cyclocross in Southern California. Others know her by a more accurate moniker: “The Tasmanian Devil.”
“In a good way,” she says, “because I just don’t stop.”
Before Dorothy was putting on races, she spent 20 years working in Hollywood, producing live events for television. She fell in step with the high-paced work and landed at Mad TV, where she spent 14 years as associate director.
“That just coincided with my bicycle habit that I picked up—one of the cameramen had said ‘Hey, you should try this mountain biking stuff. You’d love it.’”
Intrigued by a sport she’d never heard of before, she dove in at a two-day women’s mountain biking clinic in Big Bear. It was 1995 and mountain biking was gaining serious steam.
“It was an 8-mile race and I had gotten all this instruction from all these amazing women and I finished the race and I threw the bike on the ground and I screamed,” she says, recalling her moment of discovery.
Before coming to California, Dorothy spent her formative years in Oahu, Hawaii, riding BMX with the boys in her neighborhood, on the ridge two miles above Pearl Harbor. She competed in wheelie contests, but her dream was to be a pro basketball player. “But you know, girls weren’t playing professional sports,” she says. “That’s not what you did.”
The documentary film Murder Of Couriers is now available online at www.murderofcouriers.com. It’s been playing at festivals across the country, and now the rest of us that missed it in theaters that have been limited to the trailer (as posted above) can view the full length version.
Volume Bikes and Demolition Parts welcome Brit BMX boy Michael Jordan to their teams. Rooftops. Tree trunks. MJ shreds.
Liz Dimmock is heading out on the road this year in an effort to circumnavigate the globe by bicycle, raising 1 million £ for charity along the way. 18,000 miles, 5 months, 20+ countries… Find out more at www.worldride.cc
Daisy’s Grocery is based in Nagoya, Japan. Izumi Shimasaki bakes a variety of amazing breads, pies and other confections, and makes homemade sandwiches, curry and more. She also delivers by bike, though with the recent welcoming of their second child, it may very well be her husband Izuru who delivers.
The Daisy Energy Bar is made from real nuts and grains, with obvious attention to detail. It looks delicious and it is. And you can tell it’s healthy, not only because the label says so, but because it’s not overly sweet. And it’s not overly processed like many energy bars—you can taste the various individual ingredients.
The “2LapJam” was created back in the summer of 2012 as a way to end the smack talk between friends. It quickly grew in popularity, and since has morphed into a dynamic charity event we like to dub the “Race to Raise.” Unlike a traditional Alleycat, our race is different in that it is an unsanctioned race in Central Park (with an occasional twist in Prospect Park, Brooklyn). We take the traffic out, and turn it into 2 quick loops, with a twist!
January 31st will be our next and 9th race. We have been throwing these events since August 2012. In just this time we have been able to get between 60-80 track and single speed bike riders of all ages to each of our events. To date, we have had over 200 people race our event, and individuals are turning up from Washington, DC and Boston! A few of our more notable events have been raising $500 for Recycle-A-Bicycle a local non-profit that works with NYC public school students in the areas of health and bike mechanics, close to 50 racers coming out in the freezing rain to race and bring over two cars full of toy donations for Toys for Tots, and over 70 racers coming out to raise $900 to support an injured cyclist. Since the beginning of our events, we have raised over $4000 in donations!
Come “Race to Raise” at the next 2LapJam, this January 31st @ 10PM at Grand Army Plaza in Prospect Park and help us help others in our cycling community!
Check out trackordienyc.com
From The Guardian:
Gliding through the air on a bike might so far be confined to the fantasy realms of singing nannies and aliens in baskets, but riding over rooftops could one day form part of your regular commute to work, if Norman Foster has his way.
Unveiled this week, in an appropriately light-headed vision for the holiday season, SkyCycle proposes a network of elevated bike paths hoisted aloft above railway lines, allowing you to zip through town blissfully liberated from the roads.
It’s a certain lifestyle or business that necessitates a cargo bike, where carrying around more than most would consider possible by bicycle is commonplace, and not something usual racks and bags can handle. Front loading cargo bikes are the next logical step from a large front basket, with delivery bikes featuring welded-in frame-mounted racks popular throughout the first half of the 20th century. The Schwinn Cycle Truck produced from 1939-1967 defined the short wheelbase, small front wheel cargo bike, with the Soma Tradesman being a modern take on the classic arrangement.
Cargo bikes are many times limited by their very carrying capacity — many urban dwellings just can’t handle a long wheelbase bike for one reason or another. The basic design of the Tradesman with mismatched 20” front and 26” rear wheels moves the cargo lower for stability while maintaining a close to mountain bike length 1115 mm wheelbase. The welded-in rack doesn’t flop around like fork mounted racks do. The stock 14.5” x 20” rack is plenty large, but narrower than the bars. You can get this bike up porch stairs and through doorways with just a bit more effort than any other 37 lb bicycle, making it a viable cargo bike for tight urban housing.
The chromoly steel Tradesman has disc brake mounts front and rear and fits a “standard” mountain drivetrain (no provisions for internal gears or single speeds), with my review bike setup with Avid BB7s and a SRAM 3×7 setup. Rack and fender eyelets on the frame and fork maximize your weather and cargo capabilities, and a welded in kickstand plate means a fancy double-legged kickstand will hold the bike very securely. The tabs for the front rack are sturdy, and easy as any to fit to a custom cargo container. Perhaps the only finishing touches I’d add would be tabs for a chaincase and custom toptube sign. The one size fits most frame seems to work for people in the mid-five-foot to just over six-foot range, as long as one can clear the 30.5” standover requirement. A definite plus for multiple-rider households.
The Tradesman more or less handles like a regular bike thanks to the steering geometry. Rather than a sluggish turning long wheelbase cargo bike, you can carve through traffic and narrow sidewalks much the same as more regulation bicycles. The rack being welded to the frame keeps the weight from shifting back and forth with every steering motion, keep the load centered and the front wheel steering underneath the rack rather than with it. The rack is supported by a pair of tubes that start at the seattube and extend past the headtube, providing a solid platform for carrying.
One quirk of the handling is that I experienced front wheel shimmy no matter the load. Even with the rack unloaded riding no-hands wasn’t possible for long as the bars oscillated out of control. Put 75 lbs of cargo on the front and the bike is nearly unrideable as the wheel fights back and forth—that was a harrowing ride back from the big box store. The handling is likely a consequence of load being relatively high (even with the small front wheel it sits 24” off the ground) and cantilevered over the front wheel. All great for some aspects of handling, but any flex or instability in the system is felt through the path of least resistance, the handlebars. This might be the problem bicycle steering damper solutions were looking for. Keep your loads manageable and your hands on the bars.
The Tradesman excels at bulky (if not overly heavy) loads, with a large Wald delivery basket up front I was able to load up with most anything I could imagine carrying home on two wheels. Groceries, packages, copy boxes, party supplies, my backpack – it’s handy to have a cargo bike around. Throw it in and go. The bike is well balanced, enough that the bike doesn’t want to tip forward when being loaded, or when hitting a curb cut when riding. Riding the Tradesman around town opened up a new realm of what was possible to bring home without a car, helping to minimize my auto use. Quell the steering shimmy and I’d be a full convert to the cycle truck way for anything aside from construction runs.
The Tradesman is available as a frameset in either black or sparkle orange (including front rack) for $700, with a complete build as pictured estimated at $1400. www.somafab.com
Sydney Schuster’s 1987 essay on bike messengers is a look back at what most consider the golden years.
Steel frame, rocker dropouts, and I can’t help but love the flat bar build. Transition takes bikes seriously, racing not so much. Check out the Transition Rapture CX.
The first Sunday of the month marked the beginning of the Coaster Brake Challenge, a regular series of races held on fire roads and mountain trails in the hilly fringes of L.A.’s West Valley. Scarcely promoted and hardly understood, the Coaster Brake Challenge is hosted by Atomic Cycles owner Paul de Valera and draws only the most dedicated bike nerds–the ones who have the gumption to put a coaster brake on a mountain bike, outfit a cruiser for mountain biking, or build up a 26″ BMX-style ride. The rules are simple: A qualified bike must be single-speed coaster brake with no other braking mechanism. Each ride is rated for spectator-friendliness, meat pylons (aka pedestrians), and brake-age (or breakage when a coaster wheel heats up and explodes).
A couple dozen chilly cyclists gathered while the sun inched into the sky, before the sheen of frost melted from the grass. Held twice a year and in its 11th edition, the Coaster Brake Challenge meets at 7 a.m. and hits the trail shortly after 8, in a different park and on a new course each race. For $20 each participant gets a t-shirt, patch and and the chance to test their strength and adaptability skidding and stopping with a coaster brake in all four races of the series. Double-bar cruisers, one-piece cranks, carbon risers and clipless pedals all become commingled in the madness of the Coaster Brake Challenge.
The first race in the series consisted of a large loop with the second half repeated for a roughly 10-mile course that delved into a 2,900-acre parkland of rolling hills. On the inside of the loop, the city ceased to exist and coyotes wandered through the open space between the trails. Challenging climbs were coupled with the brain-twisting trick of mountain biking on a coaster brake, sliding down hills and lining up to brake for left and right turns.
Click through the photos below from the first CBC 11 race and visit atomiccycles.com to check out some more coaster brake bikes and for details about the rest of the Coaster Brake Challenge series.
Where do you live and what’s it like riding in your city?
I live in Brooklyn, New York. I’ve biked in dozens of cities all over the United States and New York is unique to any other city traffic. In most cities cars are pretty passive and will avoid being close to cyclist. In New York, cars hold their lines and go much faster, which in my opinion is much better. They are way more predictable and are not just going to randomly shoot over lanes, unless its a cab coming to pick up a fare. There is also local races in New York. Park races are held some times multiple times a month in Central and Prospect Park so you don’t have to venture far for a race. There is also races every week at Kissena Velodrome in Queens. It’s nice having so many races so close to home and not having to drive 2 hours or so out to the middle of no where.
What was your favorite city to ride in, and why?
I love riding in Boston because there is never a correct way to get somewhere, just a new or different way. So you never get stuck with the same route to and from. It makes the rides a bit more interesting.
Why do you love riding in the city?
I love riding in the city because of all the different bike people you can meet.
Check out pedalporn.tumblr.com
Even though some numbers show that women make up half of new bike purchases, there is no doubt that many shops feel like a boy’s club. Two friends from Chicago are trying to change that with BFF Bikes, a women’s bike shop they are opening this March. Vanessa Buccella and Annie Byrne’s shop will cater to the needs of female riders with a welcoming environment, women’s friendly parts and clothing selection, and a full-service shop. You can help them launch BFF Bikes via their indiegogo campaign.
From Bicycle Retailer:
Bikes, it seems, have finally become visible enough to receive the kind of colorful and aggressive comments more frequently reserved for hot-button issues like abortion rights, school prayer and gay marriage.
In the article, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is quoted as comparing cycling to swimming with sharks, “sooner or later you’re going to get bitten.” He then summed up his statesmanlike thinking with the comment, “cyclists are a pain in the ass to motorists.” He then backed it up by having some bike lanes removed at a cost of about $300,000.
Electra bikes, known for their forward pedaling position and eye-catching paint designs, has been purchased by Trek Bicycle according to Bike Biz. Comfortable bikes for the masses have always been the goal of Electra, and with the money of Trek now behind them I’d expect to see them show up in even more retail locations than before. Time will tell if the Electra brand takes the path of Kelin, Gary Fisher or Bontrager within the Trek holdings or continues on its own. For their part, Trek president John Burke says, “I have always admired the Electra Brand. Trek will be able to provide financial, supply chain, distribution, and sales support that will help Electra take its business to the next level. [We] will stay out of their way when it comes to product and marketing.” Read more at www.bikebiz.com
Drew Guldalian and his Engin Cycles brand have risen to the top of the custom bicycle market over the past decade. Housed in a large garage space behind his bike shop, Wissahickon Cyclery, the Engin Cycles workspace is as I imagined it from my interactions with Drew over the years. Meticulously organized and clean as it gets, the workspace matches the finish and attention to detail of the bikes leaving with the Engin headbadge. There is a lot of experience at work here with a full shop and framebuilding operation in one location, a rare combination that no doubt contributes to complete bikes being that much better. While past bikes from Engin may have sported steel tubes and braze work, from here on out Drew is putting his focus on making the best titanium bikes out there. Engin Cycles is not for the bargain custom buyer, this is a no-expense spared operation to make the best bicycles possible. It is clear that Drew takes this goal seriously every step of the way, producing the kind of bikes most of us can only dream of someday owning. Always great to see a bike being born and get another perspective on frame construction from a veteran of the craft.
Be sure to click through for a gallery of images of Engin bicycles we’ve shot at North American Handmade Bicycle Shows gone by.
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