Friday, February 29, 2008

Mass on leap day

So Critical Mass was fun as always. The ride was a little short, but it was still fun. I didn't go to the after party, because Jenn and I were going to go camping.

I will say that it has gotten alot better with people corking the intersections and waving at the cars as they pass them by, instead of flipping them off because they (drivers) are annoyed and honking.

What does bother me, is when people drink while they are riding, and then just throw their cans on the road as they are riding. Right on if you want to drink, hell I drink on a lot of rides...but I throw my cans away in my bag. Dispose of your cans properly. This is only making cyclist look bad and critical mass look bad as well. I know that sometimes a few bad apples are always bound to be around, but we should speak up when we see it happening.


On a different note, I got my new cranks today. All I need now is to get my chain and some new pedals, and "Betty" will be ready to roll once more.

I am pissed at bicycle sport shop. We bought a chain from them and had them put it on (that is the only thing I hate doing on a bike) and they said her bikes brakes were "unsafe". So I paid them more money to "fix them" properly. Well last night we were riding home and Jenn's chain broke and that bent one of the chain ring teeth. She took it back to them today and the guy basically told her that the chain ring is very old (which it isn't, I bought it three months ago) and that it was her fault for having it on the wrong part of the cassette ( I have it ghetto single speed for now, til I can get her another wheel). He said that was unsafe also. My thing is this. If it was unsafe, then how did the bike make it out of the shop if it was unsafe. Shouldn't one of the shop folks realized that the chain line wasn't straight? So now I have to go in and be a dick, because they don't want to put another chain ring on for free. If they don't do it...then I am never taking my business there again.

I'm done venting.

til next time


OLC

Thursday, February 28, 2008

alley cat in march

First I would like to say sorry for not writing yesterday. I was out riding around and had work.


So some of you may know that I am planning a race in march. Well the first weekend, is no good because of time restraints. The next weekend is SXSW. The third weekend is Easter. So it has been pushed back to the last weekend of March (Saturday the 29th). I have the manifest printed out and ready along with all the pit stops. I am still working n getting some of the prizes lined up, but in my opinion the race isn't about the prizes. I am also working on having a bike in movie after the award ceremony. This is going to be a fucking rad race and I want a big turn out. The entry fee is going to be 5 bucks, and there will be cash prizes and other prizes that will be just as good as cash. As it gets closer to the week of the race I will remind all of you. Here is one of the flyers for the race.



Now onto other things.Yesterday in bike snob's blog, he wrote about bike messengers and them being an endangered species. I think his blogs are funny and he is saying what he wants, because it is his blog and not anyone else's. What pissed me off was the article that he had a link to. It wasn't the article that upset me....it was some of the comments about it that frustrated me.

This was one of them.

Posted by myopinion_matters at 2/26/08 5:55 a.m.

GOOD RIDDANCE, I've been struck twice by dangerous and inconsiderate messenger jerks while walking on the sidewalk. All the illegal stunts they pull on the streets endanger everyone. Won't miss the bums one bit!


My comment on this is that in Seattle they have the right to be on the sidewalk. If you were not so wrapped up on your cell phone drinking your five dollar starbucks coffee you might have seen them and not stepped into the path in which they were going.

This is another. Same guy, I guess he had to vent twice.

Posted by myopinion_matters at 2/26/08 7:27 a.m.

These messenger thugs should have been regulated out of existence long ago. With the love of regulation and licensing that the State has, they should have required these punks to have a $1 million liability bond before they ever could put a pedal to the road.


This could be said for all the drivers that are to busy eating, talking on the phone, sending text messages, putting on make up, and overall not paying attention.

This is one that I totally agree with.

Posted by Lookitsme at 2/26/08 8:49 a.m.

were some of the rudest, most self-righteous punks I'd ever seen;

Yes, almost as bad as the average red light running, latte swilling, cell phone yakking, self absorbed driver down town...


I mean Jesus fucking Christ. you act like bike messengers ruin your life, when in fact you (drivers) ruin their lives when you run a fucking red light and kill them, because you were not paying attention(this could have easily been a cyclist).



I think this is the best response.

Posted by Peter Whitney at 2/26/08 10:29 a.m.

Yeah, it sucks about the pregnant woman in DC, and sure there are some messengers with attitudes and blah blah blah. But seriously, you can't lump everyone together because of the actions of a few. I went to Whitman middle school where teachers molested students and had kiddie porn, doesn't mean all teachers are bad. I've been bit on the hand by a dog outside of Safeway, doesn't mean all dogs are bad.

Generalizing a group of people because of the actions of a few is very closeminded. And the one person killed by a bike messenger is a poor example.


Enough said.

I get tired of drivers blaming shit on cyclist. I have been hit by cars several times and none of them were my fault. It was the drivers fault and some of them didn't even stop to see if I was ok.

I know that when I do drive a car (very rarly because I don't own one) I pay attention to cyclist on the road and give them more than enough room when I am passing them. I think that every driver should have to ride a bike to work and deal with the same assholes that we cyclist deal with on a daily basis.


I am done venting for today. I will see you guys for MASS tomorrow and the pub crawl on sunday.

til next time

OLC

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Bicycle Issues at CITY COUNCIL - 10am Febuary 28th ***Has been postponed***

I am just leaving the original message about this up and editing it, so everyone know that it has been postponed. This is the email I got this morning.

OLC

Greetings all!

In last month's newsletter, we announced that at the February 28th City Council meeting there would be on the agenda:

1) The presentation of the Street Smarts Task Force: The task force was created in response to the proposed helmet law in 2006 and is proposing comprehensive improvements in infrastructure, education, and enforcement efforts in Austin that IF approved by council will be a mandate to city government to bring about these changes that will benefit all cyclists. See http://www.ci.austin.tx.us/council/streetsmarts.htm for more info.
2) The Yellow Bike Project long term lease on City land: YBP has been working with the city for over a year to find a suitable home for our new shop once the current 51st street shop has been demolished. Our search has led us to a site at East 12th and Webberville for which we have been working with Public Works and Austin Energy towards a lease agreement. If the lease is secure YBP will build a 3000 sq ft facility on the site as its new headquarters. WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT AT CITY COUNCIL TO SHOW COUNCIL HOW IMPORTANT YBP IS TO AUSTIN BICYCLISTS!
It has come to our attention that BOTH of these items have been postponed. We expect these items to come to council in the next month, and we'll keep you posted with updates in the next newsletter.
Thanks for your suppport --

Jennifer Schaffer

Web Servant
Austin's Yellow Bike | www.austinyellowbike.org

"Be the change you would like to see in the world." - Gandhi
"Keep Cycling: it is Undoubtedly the Best form of Activism there is."






So this is a re-post if you will from the yellow bike project

"Two very important issues for bicyclists will be brought to City Council at this meeting. You can show up 3 days prior to the meeting and vote your position on the two issues using the computers in the lobby of City Hall or show up in person to the meeting and speak or just show your presence.

1) The Presentation of the Street Smarts Task Force: The task force is proposing comprehensive improvements in infrastructure, education, and enforcement efforts in Austin that IF approved by council will be a mandate to city government to bring about these changes that will benefit all cyclists.

2) The Yellow Bike Project long term lease on City land: YBP has been working with the city for over a year to find a suitable home for our new shop once the current 51st street shop has been demolished. Our search has led us to a site at 1200 Webberville where we have been working with Public Works and Austin Energy to work out a lease. If the lease is secure YBP will build a 3000 sq ft facility on the site since no building currently exists. "

WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT AT CITY COUNCIL TO SHOW COUNCIL HOW IMPORTANT THIS ORGANIZATION IS TO AUSTIN BICYCLISTS!



I think that if you can make it you should come out. If not go and vote on the position you stand on today or tomorrow.


Now onto other things. As I get older, I have started to realize that body needs a brake every now and then. I have been going none stop without a brake for about the past three weeks and my body, I think, is telling me to slow down. As you know just this past weekend, I put in a 26 mile ride just looking for houses. Not to mention all of my daily riding. So my guess is over the past three weeks, I have probably put in at least...200 miles of riding. Along with kickball going out of town. After kick ball last night, my body this morning is telling me NO. So I am going to listen. Today will be the first day that I have not rode my bike since breaking my hand. It isn't something that I want to do. It is something that I have to do. I feel like I am going to fall apart. I probably don't feel as bad as Jason, but I still feel like shit.

So with that being said, I am going to lounge around the house and do some laundry and clean the kitchen and my room. So I might not have to much to talk about tomorrow. Oh well, I am sure you will get over it.

til next time

OLC

Monday, February 25, 2008

weekend happenings

This weekend was filled with tons of riding and getting steals on a couple of things.

First things first. I received this update about Caden. He was the one who took the spill on the full moon cruise. There is also a different view of the events that happened. So read up, and I wish him well.

So I went to frankenbike on Saturday. I scored a couple of things that I wanted/needed. First I got a new stem for my surly steamroller. It is so freaking sweet!!! The drop on it is sick and I have to get this bike back on the road. The bike is out of commission right now, because I gave my old fuji, to Jenn and took the crankset off of the surly and put it on the fuji, so she could keep up with me. She is now running 47x14 single speed.

Next up, I scored a Brooks B-17 champion saddle. It is a little worn, but nothing a little treatment won't fix. There wasn't anything wrong with the saddle I had. Everyone did always ask me "if it was uncomfortable" which it wasn't. I mean it was an old plastic BMX style seat. I've just been wanting a Brooks for awhile.




I also picked up Jenn some gloves, because she has white bar tape on the fuji, just to try and help not letting it get dirty so fast.

Now onto the riding. Jenn and I are looking to get into another house when the lease is up, or maybe even a little sooner than that. Some of our friends want to lease the extra room and we don't want to have to share a bathroom with anyone else so, we went looking. We rode all around the east side and up north around 51st. We went through all the neighbor hoods and found a few house that might work. When we got home I used the Gmap pedometer and mapped out where we went. We ended up riding about 26 miles and it was great. i think that was Jenn's longest ride and I was proud of her.

Friday, February 22, 2008

worst of ATX craigslist ads #2

Now I know that some people just need to sell a bike for whatever reason. Again, the money that they ask for one is just baffling. What is also funny to me is when a hipster/scenester is getting rid of a bike to start a new project. Take this guy.


road bike/fixie/ss for sale - $700
Reply to: sale-582278536@craigslist.org
Date: 2008-02-21, 7:23PM CST





When taking this picture, he had to just wear his orange nike's to show what a true hipster he is, not to mention the graffiti wall in the background. He is obviously done with this and is maybe starting to think about going back to his BMX. I mean, he must be having trouble pulling some of the fixie tricks.

Then there is this.


70s Huffy Sweepstake 3-speed - $120
Reply to: sale-581828351@craigslist.org
Date: 2008-02-21, 12:48PM CST






Now don't get me wrong....everyone loves them some Huffy.....when they were 5. What we have here is someone cleaning out their garage and trying to get what they paid for it in 1985. You can go to yellow bike project, and donate 12 hours of your time, and end up building a bike like this. What does it cost you? NOTHING, just your time. Not to mention, you might actually learn how to work on the bike yourself.


I am just saying if you are going to rip someone off, you might as well do it right and stick it in their butt too.

til next time

OLC

Thursday, February 21, 2008

The carnage of a downhill

So last night was the Full moon cruise. I got to the bridge around 15 after 11. I had bought a couple of beers and was enjoying watching everyone get to the starting point. I talked with a few folks we exchanged bike stories. I couldn't help but to notice the usual hipster fixed gear riders showing up. Some of us almost took bets of who would bail on the ride before it was finished. Now before anyone starts to jump on me about the hipsters...yes I do ride a fixed gear. No, I don't go around doing tricks or skidding (unless I need to for stopping reasons). I like riding fixed because of how I feel with the bike, not because it is the new BMX, and all the hip kids are doing it.

The reason for the bets, was because of the rides route had the infamous Mt Bunell.

So everyone finally shows up and we took off. As soon as we got down the spiral walk way someone ate it right away because of the sharp turn. Maybe a preview of what was to come. The group started off strong, we had maybe 25-75 riders. As the night progressed and the hills started coming we started losing people. One was to the fact that some folks didn't keep up and didn't know where we were going and some because the hills did have a sting in them. We stopped several times along the way, drinking beers talking and then we would start up again. When we were about half way on the ride we already had lost quite a few people, about half of them were no where to be seen. Everyone else is still going, so it was off to the hardest part of the ride. Mt. Bunell.

Now I personally have not ridden this before and wasn't quite sure what to expect.I knew the hill was brutal. I also knew that I wasn't familiar with the roads, so I took my time when we would have a downhill before an uphill. I was always at the back of the pack, because I ride fixed and I have no front brake or rear brake, except for my legs. The hills were quite fun to go down and a bitch to go up. I run 52x14 so the hills were a bitch. I made it up all of them with out getting off my bike, except once. That was in part because when I was almost at the top of the hill everyone was stopping and getting off of their bikes and starting to walk the hill, and that cause me to almost run into the back of someone else. So I walked the last 20 yards or so.

When we got to the top, one of the first things I did was catch my breath and looked for the hipsters....only a couple to be seen. Once we reached the top, there was a stair case that we all went up to take our final break of the evening. Bob gets my vote for biker of the night for carrying his heavy ass stereo up all the hills and then up the stairs. He did end up up chucking a little.

Everyone was ready to ride again, so we started the descent. I was told that at the bottom of the hill was a 90 degree turn, so I already knew I might be in trouble depending on the hill. WE got down the first of two big hills and I came up on the second one. Man that thing was steep as hell and I ended up getting off of my bike and walking down the hill. Call me a pussy if you want, but I ended up jogging down the hill because it was so steep.

As I approached the bottom , I was informed that two people busted ass on the hill and that an ambulance had already been called. I was so glad at that point because 1. I didn't want to wreck, and 2. One of the guys that wrecked was riding fixed and with no brakes. "He's still in ICU he has a broken collar bone, fractured skull, and he has some brain bleeding. He doesn't remember a thing!! I think we should have a new rule all you trendy fixed gears need helmets!!!" Now I hate to see anyone go down on a bike and I wish him a speedy recovery. He was also one of two people I saw with a fixed gear at that point besides me. That just goes to show that the hipsters are about tricks and not just the ride. Otherwise they would have climbed those hills with us 3 fixie riders and the rest of the geared riders.

So I guess this is my official vote of, lets not take the Mt. Bunell route again. Two riders down in one night and the last time that route was taken a rider went down.

This is just my two cents.

Overall the evening was a blast, except for when I got rained on coming home, but that wasn't that bad. I just didn't want to wreck and have no one around.

til next time

OLC

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

critical mass december

I finally put the video together of the december critical mass...here you go

borfo ride and full moon ride

So last night was the "Joe Borfo" ride and it was fun as hell. Joe always dresses up in a bunny costume so that was the theme of the Midnight Ridazz ride last night.


We started the night out at Donn's Depot and then cruised over to Beso's. We had a jager bomb and a couple of beers and then headed to "showdown". Jenny and I are poor, so we snuck a few beers in and filled the pitcher a couple of times. We were going to go to flying saucer, but some of the riders we're not down with going up the hills. I don't blame them sometimes running the 52x14.

After that we started to go to shoal creek, but they were closed. I was hungry because I had only eaten once yesterday and so we went over to little woodrows for some beer and torchys tacos. Again, torchys was closed, but by this time it was already like 1 am so we hung out and took some pics and drank some more.







After everything was said and done, we left to come back home. The night was quite a blast.


Now onto tonight. It is the full moon ride. There is supposed to be a lunar eclpise tonight also. This ride should be fucking bad ass. It starts at midnight, but I will be on the bridge around 11. So come and have a blast tonight.

til next time

OLC

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Midnight Ridazz

Tonight is the midnight ridazz pub crawl. Starts at 9 @ Donn's depot. It is the Joe Borfo ride so we are dressing up in bunny costumes and riding.
Photobucket

I am looking forward to this ride, scratch that, I look forward to every ride.

Tomorrow is also the full moon ride. This is going to be fun also. Sorry for not much to say, just hung over and want to go to sleep.

I'll let you know how the ride went.

til next time

OLC

Monday, February 18, 2008

planes trains and bicycle's

So I think one of the ways that I am going to start traveling to Ft. Worth is by train.
It is about the same ass driving. The cost is about thirty one dollars each way. Driving in the car is about the same price a little more. I figure that this is another way that I can not drive a car. I can bring my bike on the train with me and when I hit funky town jump on and start riding.

I have been wanting to ride in funky town for awhile. Jenn and I took our bikes up there not to long ago, but didn't get much riding done. this way I can get some riding in even when I am on a mini vacation. the first train ride will probably be in June, unless Jenny wants to go up there before that.

This will also give me a chance to ride with some of the fort worth kids that are on the FFW forums. Not to mention, I can see how I fare riding in funky town in comparison to the ATX.

There will be one major difference. Bike lanes. The DFW area has bike lanes, but they are not marked, like they are in Austin. This will be somewhat of an issue, but I don't think it will be that bad. I will get into contact with some folks who ride up there on a regular basis and see what they say.

til next time

OLC

Thursday, February 14, 2008

worst of ATX craigslist ads #1

So I am totally taking a note from NYC bike snob and I am starting my own worst of craigslist. So as I was going through the daily scouring of craigslist I found this guy.

60cm Bianchi San Jose 06 model - $200
Reply to: sale-573570739@craigslist.org
Date: 2008-02-14, 12:09AM CST


This is the third time I have seen his postings. What I love about this is he said in a previous posting that it has "normal wear and tear" on the frame. "Normal wear and tear" my ass



This to me does not look like "normal wear and tear". I have several bikes that I ride on a daily basis and none of them have this "wear and tear". Now I know that he is only asking $200 for the bike....but really??? This bike looks like it is about to fall apart!!!


New Men's DiamondBack Mountain Bike - $125
Reply to: sale-573653218@craigslist.org
Date: 2008-02-14, 3:55AM CST


Then there is this guy. Why would anyone want this bike, especially for $125 bucks???

Selling a new and never ridden Men's DiamondBack Outlook Mountain Bike.

This is the "newest" Diamondback Outlook Mountain bike, It looks nothing like this bike. I mean it even has shocks WOW!!!! Not to mention that it is an '05

Now I am not going to down anyone(maybe I am) for riding such a terrible bike, but again...really??? $125? you have got to be kidding me.

Now I know 100% that I don't have the best bike, and I know that not everyone(especially me) has the money to get a descent bike, but this isn't about them. It is about the stupid people who are trying to rip people off for a shitty bike. I mean you can go to Walmart and get a better bike than that...

I just really want to know what is going through peoples minds when they are posting something for a $ amount that is no where near the $ amount that it is worth.

Just my thoughts today....

til next time


OLC

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

To wear a helmet or not to wear a helmet

Awhile back I read an articule about wearing a helmet and not wearing a helmet. It was based out of the UK so I didn't really know if it would compare to the states. So I purchased a helmet not to long ago, and I have found that that it pretty much applies everywhere. Since having my helmet, I have experienced more close call of almost getting plowed through like a fat kid eating cake then what I care to deal with. Now I know that ultimately wearing a helmet will "possibly" save my life. I just can't help but to notice people driving closer to me, cutting me off, and damn near hitting me on a daily basis. Today I was riding to work, it was about 7:00 in the morning and I was just about to turn left on to the feeder road and out of nowhere comes this lady in her SUV and cuts me off to make the turn. Apparently she was in to big of a hurry to let me turn, which would have taken two more seconds of her precious time. This isn't the first time at that intersection either. First time was an SUV that almost looked the same as the one today, but it was at like 2:00 in the afternoon when there is no traffic. On that particular day I had decided to go for a long ride (you may have to zoom out a bit) and almost got hit a total of four times. One said SUV Two a garbage truck for the city, Three a pick up truck, and Four a cab driver.

Now I am not saying that I haven't had close calls without my helmet. I have. I have been hit three times, one resulting with two of my ribs getting cracked. You know there have been several close calls, one in which Jenn almost got hit, and I chased the guys down and got into a fight (as some of you know) and broke my hand.

So I am left wondering, do I really "need" to wear my helmet? I mean if people see it (helmet) and don't care and almost hit me, versus when I am not wearing it and people don't come quite as close. What is the point?

I am still going to wear it, because I know that it can save my life (and I paid for it), but WTF??? Why are people in such a hurry to not wait two seconds, maybe three, fuck maybe even five SECONDS till they pass? Is that to much to ask?

Another thing that I HATE, when I am going down a hill and someone just has to get in front of me to make a turn....again, can you not wait a second for me to get passed your oh so important turn?

This can be so frustrating sometimes, but I choose to ride my bike for several reasons. One. I just enjoy it. It can be so relaxing, commanding, exhilarating. Two. I am not a environmental nut, but I try and do my part. I don't litter, I try and recycle, and I don't drive a car, unless necessary. Three. The exercise. Four. It is just fun. I enjoy group rides. I enjoy riding with Jenn. Overall I just enjoy cycling.

I wish more people would ride a bike. Then they would know what it is like to almost get hit by a car (and maybe pay more attention, I know this isn't bicycle, but still). They would maybe just learn to enjoy themselves and get exercise at the same time.

I am done venting for now, but I am sure at some point in time I will do it some more.


til next time


OLC

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

fixed gear and why some may choose to ride it

What is a Fixed-Gear Bicycle, and Why Would You Want One?


*Bicycle, Bicycle,Bicycle....one of thee oldest and simplest type of bicycle is the "fixed-gear" bicycle. This is a single-speed bike without a freewheel; that is, whenever the bike is in motion, the pedals will go around. You cannot coast on a fixed-gear machine.

Track bicycle, any enthusiastic cyclists ride such bicycles by choice, at least part of the time. Why would anybody do that? It is not easy to put into words. There is an almost mystical connection between a fixed-gear cyclist and bicycle, it feels like an extension of your body to a greater extent than does a freewheel-equipped machine. If you are an enthusiastic, vigorous cyclist, you really should give it a try.


A fixed wheel bicycle, takes a bit of practice to become comfortable. Most cyclists, trying it for the first time, will automatically try to coast once the bike gets up to a certain speed. The bike will not allow this, and it is disconcerting. It takes a couple of weeks of regular riding to unlearn the impulse to coast, and become at ease on a fixed gear.

It is worth going through this learning experience, however, because once you do so, you will discover a new joy in cycling. When you ride a fixed gear, you feel a closer communion with your bike and with the road. There is a purity and simplicity to the fixed-gear bicycle that can be quite seductive. Somehow, once you get past the unfamiliarity, it is just more fun than riding a bike with gears and a freewheel! If you won't take my word for it, go fuck yourself!!!!



Riding a fixed gear on the road is excellent exercise. When you need to climb, you don't need to think about when to change gears, because you don't have that option. Instead, you know that you must just stand up and pedal, even though the gear is too high for maximum climbing efficiency. This makes you stronger.

If you have the option of gearing down and taking a hill at a slow pace, it is easy to yield to the temptation. When you ride a fixed gear, the need to push hard to get up the hills forces you to ride at a higher intensity than you otherwise might. Really steep hills may make you get off and walk, but the hills you are able to climb, you will climb substantially faster than you would on a geared bicycle.

When you descend, you can't coast, but the gear is too low. This forces you to pedal at a faster cadence than you would choose on a multi-speed bicycle. High-cadence pedaling improves the suppleness of you legs. High rpm's force you to learn to pedal in a smooth manner--if you don't, you will bounce up and down in the saddle.

Most cyclists coast far too much. Riding a fixed-gear bike will break this pernicious habit. Coasting breaks up your rhythm and allows your legs to stiffen up. Keeping your legs in motion keeps the muscles supple, and promotes good circulation.

Fixed for Feel

A track bike fixed gear gives you a very direct feel for traction conditions on slippery surfaces. This makes them particularly suitable for riding in rainy or icy conditions.

This same feel for traction will help you learn exactly how hard you can apply your front brake without quite lifting the rear off the ground. Most fixed-gear riders only use a front brake--a rear brake is quite unnecessary on a fixed-gear machine.

Because you are more solidly connected to the bike, you have better control of it in bumpy conditions or in difficult corners.

On any road bike, the rider must learn to un-weight the saddle to ride over bumps. Most cyclists coast to do this. A fixed-gear rider will learn to "post" over bumps without breaking stride.

Fixed for Efficiency

A fixed wheel fixed-gear bike is considerably lighter than a multi-speed bike of comparable quality, due to the absence of the rear brake, derailers, shift levers, and extra sprockets. A fixed-gear bike also has a substantially shorter chain.

A properly set-up fixed gear has a perfectly straight chainline. This, plus the absence of derailer pulleys, makes a real improvement in the drive-train efficiency, an improvement you can feel.

Track Bicycles

Many fixed cogany people think of fixed-gear bikes and track bikes as synonymous, but they aren't

Track bicycles are designed for use on velodromes (bicycle tracks). Some riders do ride them on the road, but they are less than ideal for road use.

Track bicycles are set apart from road bicycles by more than the fact that they have a fixed gear.

Track bicycles do not have brakes. Brakes are un-necessary on tracks, since everybody is moving in the same direction, and none of the other bikes you are riding with can stop any faster than you can. (Most tracks forbid the use of bikes that have brakes, as a safety measure!)

It is possible to fit a brake to some track bikes, but it is often quite difficult, due to the extremely tight frame clearances. Extremely short-reach brakes are needed. Track bike fork blades are usually round instead of oval, as those of a road bike are. This makes them stiffer and more rigid laterally, a good thing for hard out-of-the-saddle sprinting, which can apply considerable side loads. Unfortunately, they are less rigid front-to-back, so if you fit a brake, the fork may flex objectionably when the brake is applied.

The frame geometry of a track bike is also different from that of a road bike. Since tracks don't have bumps or potholes, they are built stiffer, with more upright frame angles. This is good for maneuverability, but causes them to ride harshly on real-world pavement.

In addition, track bikes have very tight tire clearance, since there is no reason to use any but the narrowest tires on the track. This can limit your choices for on-road use.

Track bikes don't have quick-release wheels, making it harder to fix a flat on the road.

Track bikes don't permit the mounting of fenders, limiting their usefulness in sloppy conditions.

Some riders do prefer to ride track bikes on the road, especially those who are or were into track racing, and have become used to the feel of a track bike. Track bike riding has attained cult status in New York City, in particular.
If you're interested in track racing, check out Mike Gladu's "The 'drome" site

Fixed-Gear Road Bicycles

Despite the coolness factor of true track bikes, a fixed-gear road bicycle is what I would recommend for the road cyclist in search of the benefits of fixed-gear riding.

This would typically be an older road bike, modified into a fixed-gear machine. Most older "ten-speeds" are good candidates for this sort of modification.

These bikes have the appropriate geometry for comfortable road riding, come with brakes, quick-release wheels, fender clearance, sometimes even water-bottle braze-ons.
You could buy a ready-made fixed-gear road bike, but I have a detailed article on Fixed Gear Conversions that will help you build your own.


*Most of this is written by Sheldon Brown. The rest is by OneLesCar

Lonestar Kickball

So last night was "lonestar kickball". It was a blast as always. As usual the two newest people play and the teams can get uneven real quick. So the team that I was on, sucked, well at first. The other team had the four fastest players on their team. The guy pitching for us gave up like ten runs in the first inning. We eventually got someone else to roll for us. The other team was really kicking our ass like 15 to nothing. There were a couple of times were my shoe went flying off, so I took them off. My first kick without shoes landed just inbounds of third base and I was able to get all the way to third. The next kicker got out, so it ended up not mattering. My next at kick I kicked the shit out of the ball and was starting to round third for an in-park, and I started to lose my balance and I was getting chased down by Damon(he is fast as fuck). When he threw the ball I was just about already on my face and when it hit me, it was like that was all I needed to go down. I ended up tumbling and landing on home plate....but of course I was out. My team ended up losing, but we came on strong towards the end.

Overall I had a ton of fun last night, even though we lost. The ride home was brutal, the wind was blowing like crazy and my legs were sore from riding that day and running around like a crazy person. When I finally made it home, Jenn had cooked lasagna for us. It was really good, I wasn't hungry at first, but I went back for seconds.

I also finished the video for the Sheldon Brown memorial ride. I wish that I could have taken a little bit better video, but I have a shitty digital camera that takes shitty video. Hopefully soon I will be able to get a helmet camera that will take some better videos for me. You tube also sucks, because you have a limit to what size the video is. So I need to get my own website, so I can host my own video's that are higher quality.



Sorry for the shaking in the video, I was holding it with my hand obviously. You can see Jenny in it several times :)

On to other things, work today has sucked. Even though I am sitting at home in my bath robe and working from home, it has sucked. It gets very tiring when people get annoyed because I am trying to make good with a client. Oh well. I think I am going to go in early to the office tomorrow to take care of things, before anyone else really gets there.

I am so ready to move. Jenn get a job already ;)

Anyways, if anyone is interested, kickball is every Monday at Zilker park, come and play.

I need a beer. I think I am going to clean my room and make it smell good again.


Till next time

OLC

Saturday, February 9, 2008

this weekend was full

Alright, to start things off, Friday night my friend Scottie came in from funky town. We went to see the comedy show at Esther's Follies. It surprised me just a little bit. The show was actually pretty good. I laughed damn near the entire time. After the show was over Scottie went and hung out with his cousins and Jenn and I went over to Tahna and Virginia's house for one of their friends b-day party. As soon as we get there, Tahna is basically shoving jello shots down Jenn and mines throats. We drank some beers and then I got talked into doing a shot of jack. I am not the worlds biggest fan of jack, but I took the shot anyways. We drank a few more beers and then we left. Jenn was pretty tired, I think she worked a double that day so I don't blame her.

The next morning, I got up and cooked us some breakfast and relaxed for the most part of the day. Jenn and I got some beers and had a few before we shoved off to go to the beard and mustache contest. We met up with Scottie and one of his cousins at club de ville and had some beers and Jenn (she had drawn one on) and I signed up for the contest. Jenn went back to the car and got some beers and sneaked them into the bar so our tab wouldn't be so much. There were alot of good staches and beards there. I didn't feel very confident about winning. So after we finished our beers, Jenn washed her moostache off and we were about to leave and they started saying who was wining, so we stuck around for just a bit longer. The ladies went first, and Jenn's number got called to go up onto stage...she was in the top three. She would have won second place, if she wouldn't have washed off her stache.



Then it was time for the guys. I was already excited because Jenny won and the was awesome. They called the three finalist for the guys moostache and I was in the top three also!!!! I ended up getting second!!! I was totally shocked because there were so many better stache's then mine. I won basically because the judges liked my shirt. it was a treasure city thrift store shirt.

These are 2nd, 1st, and 3rd for the guys



Man that night was so fun!!!

Jenn won a t-shirt with the

and I won the screen printed poster



So now we are onto Sunday. I cleaned my bike, because I hadn't done that since I won it. She is shinning now. We then rode down to the Sheldon Brown memorial ride. We had some beers on the way and when we got to the Lamar pedestrian bridge. Alot of my MASS friends were there. Ben the bike messenger was there also. He was the one who did the fall alley cat race and the one I won the track bike from. He informed me that it was a russian track bike and not a raliegh like I thought it was. It was good that he was there because the saddle that was on the bike when I won it, was cracked and it ended up breaking in half while I was riding and that wasn't to comfortable. He gave me another saddle (it's pink!!) and put it on for me. Jenn got mad at me because I didn't let her know where I went, but I thought she saw me and Ben break off from the pack. The ride was pretty much over by that point. Jenn had called and let me know where they were at. Boswell had gotten a flat, so we fixed it real quick and then we went to the dog and duck I bought Ben a beer for the new seat. I will post a video a little bit later of the ride.

So tonight, is Lonestar kickball. This is always fun. I', sure I will let you know how it is tomorrow.

til next time

OLC

Friday, February 8, 2008

riding

So after I got done doing laundry I sat and did a little bit of work from home. Then I went and met Jenny and we rode to HEB and picked up some stuuf, and then back to the house. I was still ready to ride, so I left and Jenny took a nap, I rode up to YPB and then over to spiderhouse for a quick cup of joe and then back to a different YPB. They think that my bottom bracket might be loose (it is making a weird clicking noise). Then I rode back to the house and had a beer, and ate some kung-pao. It was very delicious. So I ended up doing about twenty three miles yesterday. which isn't bad, but not my best. The thing about the ride is the wind was blowing 15-25 miles an hour the entire time, that sucked ass. Many of you know that I ride 52x14 and going up hills with that gear ratio is quite a pain in the ass already, but with wind blowing 25 miles an hour???? You have got to be kidding me. So it felt like I rode alot further than I did.

So tonight we are going to see her friend Donnie do his comedy bit at esters follies. I haven't seen it before, but Jenn says that it is funny. Also my friend Scottie is going to be in town from the shit hole of town Weatherford TX. I used to live there and the city is , so you have to drive thirty minutes out of your way to get beer....fuck that never again, will I live in a city that is dry. After that we are going over to our friends Tahna and Virginia's house. It is their friend Paco's 25th birthday. Beer, party, jello shots.

Anyways, I will let all of you know how everything goes.


til next time


OLC

Thursday, February 7, 2008

R.I.P Sheldon Brown

So I know that I should have done this a few days ago, but I am a lazy bastard and I didn't really want to believe it. So I am sure that you know that Sheldon Brown, died of a massive heart attack.

I am very sadden by this and I don't know how to properly express myself. I learned so much from going to his website about how to fix my bike. He was an excellent source of bicycle knowledge and I hope that new bicycle riders will go to his page to learn for themselves and to learn how to properly maintain their bicycles and his love for them (bikes).

There is no way I will ever forget him, even though I never meet him. He was an inspiration. I only hope that I can help and touch people as much as he did with his knowledge. One of my favorite things about him, is that he built and rode a fixed gear tandem bike, and his wife would ride it with him.

There is going to be a memorial ride this Sunday @4pm on the Lamar pedestrian bridge. here in Austin. I am sure there are many other rides in this nature going to happen all over the world.

I encourage you to look up if there is one in your city and go, if not make one for your city, and if no one cares and you do, go out and ride in his memory.

May you rest in peace my friend, you will be missed.

Below are some of his many bicycles that he owned and rode.




i am awake

so i am awake at 6:28 in the morning. i took jenn to work, because it is cold and i need to do laundry today. so i am using her car. it sucks being awake this early, but the good thing is, when i get done with laundry i can come back and take a nap and then ride downtown to meet jenn and maybe go for a longer ride after that.

on a different note, jenn and i watched the rest of the lives of others, and this movie was pretty damn good. i give it five stars. after that we watched across the universe. this was good, for a musical. at first i was about ready to stop the movie, but it picked up and the songs got better and i was able to tolerate it and then it turned into a better movie. rent it if you like musicals, love the beatles or are just bored. i give it three stars.

onto other things, i also found out that i have a warrant for my arrest (for running a red light on my bike) which i knew, but they are going to basically go door to door on a warrant round up. fun fun fun. so now i defintly have to pay this on friday when i get paid. i am not looking forward to this, because i need to use that money to pay hospital bills for this. but oh well, i did run the light, even though it was clear and the light changed as i went through it. lesson learned...make sure no cops are around, because even if you run the light on your bike, the ticket is the same price as a car....$351.00 big ones.

i also made a flyer for this will destroy you. i like it alot better then the one they have for the show that's on the 8th.Photobucket i think it fits them better. they are playing with lymbic system and both bands are pretty damn awesome. if you don't know then you should check them both out.

ok i am going to sort my laundry now, because the place opens up at seven and it is now six forty.

til next time


OLC

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

just some new news

alright, so the last blog i posted was just some writing and me venting, so don't take it to seriously.

so i guess i should have wrote this yesterday...but i will forgive myself for not. we met up with some of the midnight ridazz for happy hour on monday, and then went to get some torchey's tacos before heading over to lonestar kickball. i had alot of fun and jenny and i meet this really cool deaf chick. i am so bad with names but she was kick ass.


jenn and i didn't do to much yesterday, she had to work early and i went for a bike ride, not to mention i needed to recover from the weekends events and the kickball. we did however go and get jenny a helmet for her bike. hers is white and mine is black. i think she is going to paint it though. but this just means we get to start working on our paper machetes bunny helmets!!! i can't wait to do this. i am going to start wearing mine even before the ride, which is on 18th. this is going to be a fun ride. also we have kind of made it official and we are only going to do the cemetery cats pub crawl on the first sundays. hopefully it will bring more folks on the ride if it is just once a month.

i also just found a camera that i can put onto my helmet for when i am wanting to record some of my riding. it cost about 85 bucks...not the best camera, but for what i want it for it is good. i can also make video's of critical mass a little easier.



jenn and i are going to see a band tomorrow night. "something called nothing" i am sure it will be a good time. then next weekend, we'll be going to funky town for the tarantula pants show *bonus* the pAperchAse will be playing the night before in dallas so we can go and check them out also. man they put on such a good show and i am looking forward to this....maybe i can get some of my lame friends to go also. this should be a fun trip. josh better fucking hang out this time....i'll kick his ass if he doesn't.

i think that this is about it for now. i can't really think of anything else to write, if i do i'll be back


til then

OLC

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

i

think i might love my last thought

Monday, February 4, 2008

this weekend

was pretty awesome. first was the party, and then A1's pub crawl. i had alot of fun, it would have been alot better if jenny would have been here for the party also. the dirty sound and mike and the moonpiesplayed. i danced around the house by myself, andy yelled at me and we started singing together while while i was being dastardly drunk. we went through a keg of lonestar, a case of lonestar, a 18 pack of miller light, a case of long hammer IPA's, a twelve pack of high life, and a big long cooler full of forties...and i found some kind of whiskey bottle empty in the back yard. i also did like 2 car bombs, which i think helped me get so drunk. i my friend raun, that i haven't seen in probably ten years showed up, he got wasted and passed out on the floor. it was a fun time, but i missed my jenny :(

then was the pub crawl was yesterday and that was alot of fun!! mim's wasn't able to make it 'cause she was taking care of casey. man that poor guy is still sick...i think i might get like a get well soon something for him. we rode from the jackalope, to donn's to mean eyed cat, to little woodrows, then to beso's, and then we got a couple of twelve packs and went to the lamar pedestrian bridge and sat and drank and watched the cars drive by.over all the night was a blast. good times, beer, and bikes...how can you go wrong?

i think that we have established that we will be doing the cemetery cats pub crawl on the first sunday of the month. pub crawls can get quite expensive and i don't think everyone has the money for it every week. plus this gives the opportunity for everyone to request off the first sunday so we have a bigger ride. i am also going to discuss it with jenn of maybe doing a themed ride like the ridazz. i like dressing up and i think most everyone else does also.

with saying that, the next midnight ridazz ride is on the 21st of febuary and it is going to be the joe borfo ride. this is one of the original midnight ridazz in LA. it doesn't matter what the theme of the ride is, he always dresses up in a full bunny costume.


so that is the next ride. since i have started wearing a helmet, jenn and i will be making paper machet bunny helmet tops....bunny gear for our helmets. i am looking forward to this ride.

til next time

OLC

Saturday, February 2, 2008

party

so there is a party today at the house. it starts at two and the dirty sound and mike and the moon pies are playing. should be a good time, keg food, bands....i hope the cops don't get called for any reason. i am sure i will write about what happened a little later tonight or tomorrow, but til then, this is the flyer i made.



Photobucket

Friday, February 1, 2008

so i have to say

that i guess this blog is turning into me just writing whenever i feel like it...which i guess that is the point of a blog, but instead of doing it once a day, i find myself doing it more than once.

so with that being said the reason i am writing now is because i wanted to share some of my favorite videos from youtube.

this video is just fucking awesome, i don't think lucas could have choosen a better song for it. this is why i have become a broken social scene fan...this video. period.



don't really care for the tunes so much on this one, but the fact that he is riding on a highway during rush hour is awesome...


i really would like to do a race like this, but with the drinking, i would rather the streets be completely empty, which will never happen.


lucas is awesome at racing and i admire him for it, although i will say that his balls are bigger than mine because i love to race, but i think about the repercusions of running the red lights more than he does. that is why i like this next video. it is for the movie "pedal" and it is only the trailor, just wait for the end of the video and you will understand why his balls are bigger than mine.



i am sure i will post something a little bit later also.

oh and there is going to be a keg/pot luck party at my house tomorrow and i am sure that it is going to be a blast...i just hope there is no tension for reasons of certain people being around.

til next time

OLC

weird dream

so i was in funky town, but it wasn't really funky town, more like a new york type setting...but it was funky town.and i wasn't really myself...i mean i was but i wasn't. none of my friends were the same and my family didn't live there. anyways there was some sort of weird anti government thing that i was a part of and i still rode my bike every where. i'm still a little fuzzy on the details, because i normally don't remember my dreams. the group that i was a part of did some kind of massive stunt that had all of the police in funky town after us. we were in a huge critical mass size group and everyone was riding and then we all split up. i was doing some fucking awesome hollywood action shit. i was riding my fixed gear and i jumped a set of like five steps with some cops on my ass on their motorcycles....i then skidded sideways and when down an alley, the cops missed the turn. as i was riding down the alley way i noticed that that it was a dead end....there was a fire escape that was coming up on my left. so i reached up with both hands with my feet still in the clips and i flipped myself up and onto the fire escape and my bike went flying and took out one of the bike cops. the other was calling back up and telling them where i was. i proceded to get to the top of the building and there were cops coming out of the roof door. i saw them and took off running and started jumping from building to building. when i thought i had lost them, i hit the fire escape and slide down the railings. i was running through a back alley again and came across some kids and a few of them had bikes....so i snatched the BMX from one of the kids and started again...in the dream i knew where i was going...but i have no idea where that was. the cops spotted me again and were in full pursuit. one of them in their car hit me and caused me to fall...i then start getting into a fist fight with the cops and end up getting away after a few punches. back to running again. this goes on and on for awhile with different bikes and skateboards. i end up losing the cops and i was running along the banks of the trinity river. this part of town was a very bad part of town and i was cutting through peoples back yards and jumping fences and whgat not. i was thinking about swiming across the river because then i would have been in a safety zone, as far as the dream went, but i was spent on energy. so i was about four feet from the water and there was alot of brush and drift wood laying around. i made myself a little cove and i was well hid in behind some moss and leaves and wood. i saw the cops searching all over the place and they had been all around me and then one spotted me. it wasn't because i wasn't well hid. it was because of what i was wearing...it didn't even come into my mind to hide part of it.i was in all black except for parts of my shirt had reflective material on it like this
right before they found me i looked down and saw the reflective material and was like SHIT!!!
the cops found me and i was tried of running so i just let them take me. i asked, how did you see me, i was hidden so well. was it because of the reflective sleaves?and the lady cop said yes...and i just hung my head down. then out of the blue all these kids who i had used the bikes or boards stsarting coming up and wanting my autograph, the cop let me sign a few and the threw me in the paddy wagon...and i woke up.


pretty weird


i'll try and write something later also...it will probably be on how windy it was on my way to work.

til next time

OLC

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