Thursday, August 18, 2016

Powderhorn 24

This is the third time I've ridden the Powderhorn 24. I've enjoyed the ride each year, but this year was different because I participated in the bonus lap activities:
  • Printed my own spoke card on a printing press mounted on a bicycle on top of the Sabo Bridge
  • Made a talisman for myself
  • Rode a back-and-forth maze and ate taffy at 2 AM
  • Decorated my bike and helmet with glo-sticks
  • And others
The bonus lap stops in the middle of the night were trippy.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Another New Bike -- But this one really is New!

I took my broken Fisher frame to the bike shop where I purchased it in 2007. They took photos of the crack and filed a warranty claim with Trek. Trek responded with a generous credit toward a new bike. None of the old components were compatible with anything they now sell.

So I looked through the Trek catalog and found their Stache line which feature 29+ tires. I've wanted a Krampus since I first saw one, so this seemed like a good choice. I have a dual-suspension 29er, a fat bike, a single-speed 29er, and a drop-bar, 8-speed 29er. So I didn't need any of those and the Stache line turns me on. 

I test rode one at the dealer and really liked it. I figured they'd have to order it for me, but they let me have one from stock. I took a bike home that day.

It really rides well and I enjoy the light weight -- 24.5 lbs.  The best part is the front end geometry. It handles better than any of my other bikes. I cut corners faster than ever and the plus tires keep traction when I expect them to slide out. I've lost traction three times on the front end and instead of meeting the dirt, I saved it. This bike has allowed me to be a better bike handler. I don't miss the suspension parts either.

I will sell a couple of my older off-road bikes and rely on this as my main ride. 
It has a more relaxed headtube angle than I'm used to. It has a 70mm stem -- very short. It has very wide bars too. I think it would be valuable to apply these items to my fat bike and see if it handles any better. I don't really like it's handling, but I'm stuck with it in the winter.

New Bike for Rob

My Gary Fisher Sugar broke last fall near the end of riding season. I stripped the parts and found a used replacement frame pretty quickly. Surprisingly, all the parts fit the replacement frame, a Salsa Big Mama. I rode it once or twice before fat-bike season arrived.

I bought the Sugar in 2007 and Trek has a lifetime warranty. Trek owns the Fisher name, in case you didn't know. The replacement frame looks a little small doesn't it? It rides enough like the Fisher, that I am happy with it.

Got My Stolen Bike Back

My Redline Monocog 29er was stolen from my garage one Sunday afternoon in fall of 2007.

A couple months ago, a guy messaged me through the local mountain bike site. He asked if I such a bike stolen, because he had it.

After a couple back and forth messages, he called me and we arranged for him to bring the bike to me. He explained that he bought it for $100 recently from a guy who had it in his garage for years.

He delivered the bike and I gave him $100 for his trouble. The bike was unused and rode like the day it was stolen.

I installed dirt drops on it with a Jtek shifter for the 8-speed IGH I had installed right before the theft. It rode well and I really like it.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

The NASA Million Dollar Pen Story is a Myth or Another Example of Everything You Know is Wrong

I've had the story of the $1,000,000 NASA pen bouncing around in my head for many years. Now, I find out it is not true. I'm disappointed and realize my knowledge is built on other myths.

This article is based on a story in Scientific American and Snopes has also debunked the NASA pen story.

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

My Knards are Mounted!

Mounting my new Knards was not easy! One of them was a little loose and I had to seat it twice.

I used my crappy air compressor (garage sale for $25). Airing up fat-bike tires three or four times would have killed me if I had to do it with my skinny little floor pump.

I aired them up to a little less than 30 psi (the max printed on the sidewall) and I rode them around the neighborhood. They felt fast, but new equipment almost always feels that way. I stood up and sprinted -- well I consider it a sprint.

I'm really looking forward to riding them off road, especially Elm Creek. I need a do-over on that trail.

Monday, August 05, 2013

Pugsley Looses a Tire

I've been riding the Pugsley as my main off-road bike lately.
Since riding it in the snow, I have looked forward to riding it on familiar dirt trails this summer.

In the meantime, I picked up a single-speed 29er and have also been riding it. This third (fourth) off-road bike gives me the flexibility to outfit my family with bikes. J rides the Fisher 29er. C rides the Pugsley, and I ride the single speed.

The Fisher started making terrible noises so I put it aside and jumped on the Pugsley for the Saturday ride with friends. It went so well, I stayed with it. The first ride wasn't great -- I felt slower than the other guys and the Pugs handled like a pig.

I increased the tire pressure, installed a longer stem, and lowered the stem by switching spacers. The Pugs now handles great. I'm so pleased that when riding it, I imagine ignoring the other off-road bikes in my garage.

Last Sunday, I went to Elm Creek trail to ride. I got in a few miles of fun before I heard a scraping sound in the rear. I figured it was a stick, but it my tire had popped off the rim. I couldn't get the bead to seat again -- it was as if the wire bead was damaged. I walked out to the parking lot and drove home.

Coincidentally, I had ordered a pair of Surly Knards the Friday before. I expect on Tuesday. I'll install them and give it a try.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Display Windows 7 Computer Properties: Windows key + Pause/Break key

To display the Windows 7 Computer Properties, press the Windows key + Pause/Break key.

This provides a reason for those keys on top of the keyboard to exist.

This post provides a reason for this blog to exist.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Book Review: "The Wonderful Ride"

I finished reading "The Wonderful Ride." Kent Peterson reviewed it here: for Outside magazine. His review is a good description so I won't rehash it. Instead, I'll add a couple notes.

Bicyclists had a tough time in 1895 when Mr. Loher rode across the U.S. There were very few roads and most of them were poorly maintained dirt. Reading this book reminded me over and over again, that today's cyclists have it easy. Well, except for the existence of automobiles. Next time you complain about a bumpy road, remember that it's much better than riding on railroad tracks.

In chapter 8, Mr. Loher describes riding through Minnesota and the people he encounters there.

"It is useless for anyone to go to Europe on a wheeling tour when he has the same opportunity to wheel through it in America. I had gone through a little Germany in North Dakota, and now I was traveling through Norway and Sweden. I would ask ten- and twelve-year old, white-headed, American-born children questions in regard to the roads and distances from town to town, only to be stared at in a frightened manner, as they could not speak a word of English. What an unacceptable state of affairs in our glorious republic. Our free schools have thrown open wide their doors for education of our childern, only to see them grow up unable to speak our understand the English language."

This is a near identical rant I heard the other day, after our presidential election, from a guy who works in the same building I do, but he was complaining about Somalis.

Bigotry and a lack of knowledge of how immigrants fit into their new homes is not new.