Friday, October 3, 2008

Hands On: Getting a Handle On Your Brakes

Firstly, I have very good news for anybody out there who's considering a set of knuckle tattoos. (And who isn't these days? They're like "Busted Tees" for your hands!) I've just discovered that Knuckletattoos.com has a feature that allows you to preview your slogan! Check it out:


NICEBIKE Get your own knuckles at the knuckle tattoo gun.



If only I could get that second one on my knuckles as well (instead of on my back, where I'm proud to announce it is now a work-in-progress) my body-modification dreams would be realized.

Secondly, Rick, the "People's Poet," has come up a number of times in the comments recently:





As such, I was delighted to find the serendipitous "The People's Fixed" on Fixedgeargallery:


While I'd stop short of calling this bicycle "poetry in motion" (unlike the Trek above, which is a laudanum-inspired Samuel Taylor Coleridge epic crossed with a beatnik bongo freakout and a few dirty limericks thrown in for good measure) I will say that "The People's Fixed" is a fitting name since it's not only red (the color of communism) but there's also little on the bike to offend anybody, giving it an ecumenical appeal. I like to think he leaves it unlocked when he's not using it so "the people" may ride it as well.

I was less pleased, however, to discover the existence of a sort of bizzaro Fixedgeargallery, called Thefixedgeargallery:



Note the frequency with which the phrase "fixed gear" appears in order to attract people who plug it into popular search engines. Now that's clever. Personally, I think it's a shame that the internet is polluted with virtual Venus Flytraps like this. I mean, last time I checked the most popular (non-sepia) search term on the most popular search engine was "who won the vp debate," and you don't see me gratuitously referencing the candidates to draw traffic. No, I have my integrity, and I prefer to express myself on my knuckles instead:

VICEPREZ Get your own knuckles at the knuckle tattoo gun.


Fortunately, I'm not the only one out there with integrity. The good people at Gregslist also know you don't have to copy someone else's website to be successful:


I can't help wondering if there are unwitting and highly disappointed people who have been browsing both Thefixedgeargallery.com and Gregslist.com in search of Pistas and wondering what all the fuss is about. I also can't help wondering if Greg is the mastermind behind Pistadex.com, which I had absolutely nothing to do with, and which like the Death Star has quietly become operational. In fact, Greg has even arranged it so that you can get the PistaDex on your iPhone. I suppose that may be convenient for some, but as the inventor of the PistaDex I prefer to keep it even closer--on my knuckles:

PISTADEX
Get your own knuckles at the knuckle tattoo gun.


Frankly, the more I use the Knuckletattoos.com knuckle tattoo preview function, the more I realize just how addictive knuckle tattoos are. It's no wonder they're so popular. And considering the abundance of tattoo-worthy sentiments out there, I think the only regret you could possibly have in getting one would be that you can only do it once! (Or maybe twice, if you take the "Nobr Akes" approach and express yourself in two separate lines.)

And speaking of brakes, bicycle-slowing technology has just taken a quantum leap forward. A reader has spotted and photographed a working prototype of a new housingless braking system:

This is easily the most exciting new product since the helmet phone, and the advantages are obvious:

1) Lighter weight

2) The ability to run cables at extreme angles

3) Completely frictionless

4) Looks great!

It also allows you to dispense with that pesky barrel adjuster because, well, you couldn't use it anyway. Just imagine how much smarter the Trek above would look with the new housingless braking system, since he'd be able to eliminate that giant lariat on the front end. Not only is it aesthetically displeasing, but it's also dangerous, for should he put his head down while making an extreme effort he could easily get it snared in there like a calf at a rodeo, which would cause him to lose control of the bicycle and would most likely result in serious injury.

And even if you have a tattoo that says "Nobr Akes," you have to admit that we're living in a golden age of bicycle brakes. There are coaster brakes, cantilever brakes, linear-pull brakes, single-pivot brakes, dual-pivot brakes, mechanical disc brakes, hydraulic disc brakes...and this means the number of brake mullet permutations is almost infinite. For example, the above Trek is adorned with a canti/dual-pivot mullet, and the following day Alex posted in the comments this picture of a bike with a reverse v-brake/disc brake mullet:


Of course, the most difficult part of having a reverse v/disc mullet is remembering which lever controls which brake. Fortunately, though, there's one way to can always be sure:

DISCVEEE
Get your own knuckles at the knuckle tattoo gun.


Obviously you should reverse this if you've got a right/front setup.


Ride safe this weekend,


--BSNYC/RTMS



101 comments:

Anonymous said...

oh to step upon the podium

Anonymous said...

Win?

Eggywootah said...

damn i wish i had somethin witty to say. oh well


podium

Anonymous said...

poduim...sweetness

Frenchy aka Bike Boy said...

Great post...read it and maybe top 10....

The Peoples poet said...

oh god,
why
am I so much more sensitive than everybody else ?
why
do I feel things so much more acutely than them,
and understand so much more.
I bet I'm the first person who's ever felt as rotten as this.
could it be
that I'm going to grow up
to be a great poet and thinker, and all those other wankers in my class
are going to have to work in factories or go on the dole?
yes, I think it could.

nolucker said...

Wawawa

jessica said...

denver $575

Anonymous said...

the death star may have originated in a galexy long ago and far away, but something tells me that pistadex.com is from columbus.

gaahl said...

Kampen mot gud og kvitekrist er i gang!

Lord Batu said...

Where the fuck was that picture of Jessica Alba's bike taken?

Brian said...

Outside of the update on the Pistadex's status, this was underwhelming.

Dingbat said...

not podium but I can beat my last race finish....

Anonymous said...

I just want to know how he mounted the rotor to a disc wheel . . .

wishiwerepithy said...

Someone correct me if I have this wrong, but without cable housing, won't that brake cable only pull one brake pad (lamely) against the rim?

Personally, I think the advantage of a track frame on the road is you can brake by steering the front wheel against your leading foot. That should be at least as effective as the housingless brake cable.

Sure you are going to lose your balance, but you were going to crash anyway. Face it (the asphalt).

wishiwerepithy said...

ASSF AULT

Critical Ass said...

ant1st

Brendan said...

I'm still waiting for someone to invent Tesco Vee Brakes for my Superbike.

Gnarles Darwin said...

I'm Doping Free!

Peter North said...

LONG DONG

Anonymous said...

lance lv cross?

plum said...

top 30 purdy

Anonymous said...

pistadex.com should show the number of pistas for sale in a given city. as it is now, the one guy selling his pista for $800 bucks in columbus would be up there alongside the average price of 8 pistas for sale in sf bay.

just sayin...

Critical Ass said...

What kind of hairstyle does my Nishiki have? It has a single pivot on the front and a center pull on the back.

Gnarles Darwin said...

Critical Ass,

Something like Mike Score's haircut from Flock of Seagulls.

Gnarles Darwin said...

"FACE SKID"


ok I'm done.

D A N O said...

Here!

Sarah Palin said...

NUKULER Alaska

Ka_Jun said...

Joe Sixpack is a member of the lumpenproletariat. I'm off for a ride.

ant1 said...

ant1st!

Chris Mayhew said...

Nevermind all that. How did the genius get a 25.4 clamp on a 26.0 bar? It's amazing what you can do when you don't know you're not supposed to do that.

Judi said...

shabbat shalom!

very metal said...

Shouldn't the disc/veee (sic) knucle tats be inverted?

very metal said...

whoops... "knuckle"

Dmitri Fofonov said...

ФОФО НОВ!

Mark said...

Not a PODI UMHO today. :( but I am happy that I will be commuting fixed gear again!

That roadie MTB is Butt Fugly! I ride a converted MTB as a commuter, and it is a proper mullet, but to that to a Fully? And a shock post? The guy must have some big hemmies for that kind of cushion!

That bike probably has more pedal bob than a $25 Ho on 10th Ave.

cornhole said...

HAND JOBS

Mike D said...

But "Rick" is spelled with a silent "P"!

chris dodd (D) said...

i can get you a 30-year interest-only, 130% value mortgage on your brake housing.

mander said...

@ ant1: NOTT ODAY

nars said...

wishiwerepithy, are you serious about breaking by rubbing your pedal against the tire? that is suicidal!

bsnyc, i am surpried this was not mentioned in your post about breaks:

http://urbanvelo.org/dia-compe-shot-lever/

it kind of pisses me off,

Anonymous said...

DEATH TO VIDEO DROME!!!

LONG LIVE THE NEW FLESH!!!

MY NAME IS BUCK AND I LIKE TO FUCK


GET "EATEN ALIVE" AT "MAX RENN'S" HOUSE

Strayhorn said...

Xrist, I just spent a two-hour lunch strolling across campus and all I saw were rusty Diamondbacks, dinged-up Centurions, and WalMart BSOs.

Where DO you guys find the bikes pictured this past week? The only thing I saw worth photographing was a pair of ape hanger handlebars but, sheesh, after the brake mullet I'd be embarrassed to post a photo of stupid handlebars.

Anonymous said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qve-THEDTs0
I have a boner. Dainty asian girls and bicycles.

Slappy said...

It's Friday.

Mark said...

Strayhorn - define BSO? This sounds like it could be a good one, although I love the OCTS moniker, too.

ant1 said...

anon 2:13 - very nice.

bikesgonewild said...

...asian bike chicks kick sum ass...

wishiwasmerckx said...

Does anybody know how I can get Frank Schleck to send me 7,ooo euros for no apparent reason?

kale said...

anon 2:13:

Me Chinese
Me play joke
Me put peepee
In your shorts

(0:31 into the video)

BSNYC- I think you're missing the point behind the brakes. It's not so much a stopping thing, as an anti-theft device. Pretty soon we'll hear of accidents involving bike thieves unable to stop because the brakes are booby-trapped by the owners. Like the bees in the seatpost bike, the people unable to lock their bikes properly are are figuring out other ways to punish these scoundrels after their bike is stolen. Like the death penalty or nukeyerler weapons, they are going the other route: by having an effective deterrent.

Commiecanuk said...

oye, enough with the mashugga knuckle tats already.

Just because someone gives the extact sum for doping, to a doping doctor, does not imply he is doping. It does imply that he is a dope however, who pays for their dope by check? That's how I buy weed, with my checkbook and/or my Visa platinum, 200 air miles with every ounce!

Anywhoo...Schleck did not dope, Bjarne Riis says so, and when it comes to doping and cycling, he shows much truthiness.

Samantha M. said...

I miss you, Fox.

frilly said...

Commie, last one:

back door

oh, and one for you:

gold card

I wonder what Contador thinks when this surfaces again and again.

Anonymous said...

http://pro.corbis.com/images/42-19781787.jpg?size=67&uid={b75fbc3a-f61a-4547-bd7c-b78c5c7c9198}

Even the mainstream cheesy stock photo people are getting in on this...

Strayhorn said...

Mark wanted to know: define BSO?

Bike-shaped object.

I should probably credit Sheldon Brown. I don't know if he coined it, but I first saw it used in an old Usenet post of his.

Anonymous said...

The 700 billion dollar bailout check is going to bounce.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but the V/disc mullet makes sense: a front disc hub makes for a slightly weaker weel, a rear doesn't. The rear rim is generally dirtier (spray from the front) and is thus subjected to greater wear. In wet and slippery conditions you'll want to lay off the front brake anyway.

Commiecanuk said...

New topic: ass tats

I have "W" on each cheek so it spells "WOW" when I bend over.

Commiecanuk said...

anon 4:37, we're going to have to see two pieces of photo ID with that, some guy came in her last week with a $30B check claiming to be "Belgium", which I never heard of, and frankly, sounds made up.

kale said...

...sounds like a drunk...

oshit it's 5?

Strayhorn said...

The ol' commie said: I have "W" on each cheek so it spells "WOW" when I bend over.

But it looked so much better on Wendy O Williams . . .

sharpE said...

PIST AOFF

Anonymous said...

Say what? No comments on the fact that bike has a glove on one of the pedals?

Critical Ass said...

http://denver.craigslist.org/bik/865415793.html

I know I post a lot of jackass Denver CL ads, but this one is worth it. Trust me.

tex said...

That's a Cannondale Lefty brake, so it does not need housing. It's actually a rear brake, so the Lefty name seems a little silly in this application. What I want to know (or maybe I don't) is how they got that LX lever on the track type bar. Hmmm.

MadcityCobra said...

Maybe when you sell out you'll go hardcore and get BIKE SNOB
across the ol' Fists of Fury. Until then you'll have to be content on day dreaming about how to next stalk Mr. Armsrong...maybe like inventing a pair of padded shorts designed for a single ball to fit in.

dddishman said...

BONE RLUV

The Devil Woman said...

Oh, Cliff
Sometimes it must be difficult not to feel as if
You really are a Cliff
When fascists keep trying to push you over it
Are they the lemmings?
Or are you Cliff?
Or are you, Cliff?

General Boy's desk said...

Salutations.

RTMS truly is the people's poet for the oppressed cycling commuter...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QE2_uqLpBXU&feature=related

...let the global struggle for 700c justice continue!

Fly the banner of the quick-release!

Your fitness, or lack of it, is your weapon against the imperialist donut tray and its criminal partner: the pleated Docker (the General prefers a sensible light grey)!

RTMS - I'm for it!!!!

Anonymous said...

The proper term for virtual Venus Flytraps is "googletrap." As in, "I put 'naked fixed gear girls' in my blog post as a googletrap." It is both a noun and a verb. The grammar jury is still out on whether or not it can be used as an adjective. Adverbial usage is daring and postmodern but frowned upon. The gerund and present participle is "googeltrapping," unless you are from Alaska, in which case it's "googletrappin."

wishiwasmerckx said...

DO NOT tell Campy that Snobbie does not consider their top-of-the-line skeleton brakes sufficiently unique to merit their own subcategory in his brake pantheon. That sort of humiliation can only be salved by many, many Limoncellos.

urchin said...

Anon 2:13--Kog Fu Fightin'.. them chix was fast as lightnin'...

Dmitri Fofonov said...

If Chinese girls had large American breasts it make me want to Bike Snob myself.

Anonymous said...

CANT SPEL

Anonymous said...

Tell you what, I can't get a handle on This!!

Mark said...

At 5:01 commiecanuk said, "...some guy came in her" Heh heh, came in her, heh heh.

Anonymous said...

I've already set up an appointment to get this one: AYHSMB

The Penis Poet said...

Gene, Gene
Made a Machine,
Joe, Joe
Made it Go,
Art, Art
Let a Fart,
And Blew the Whole Damn
Thing Apart

Anonymous said...

NERF HERD

Anonymous said...

I don't recall having seen a post on here that was bad, but that might have been my favorite. Knuckle tats!!!!!!!!!!

sawspike said...

"Where the fuck was that picture of Jessica Alba's bike taken?"
Same question...
Nice bikes...

FREE USA Opt-In Email Leads List Sample State VIRGINIA - Page 1

Anonymous said...

limoncelli

Andt Pandy said...

Ease up on Frank.Perhaps he was paying off nasty extortion racket which had pictures of Andy and he in the showers in a comprimising position..... ooops dropped the soap

Anonymous said...

OURY OURY

Anonymous said...

I am a virgin reader of 'Bike Snob' and have to say that I found your writing to be incredibly humorous and engaging. What I can not figure out is why there are so many lame and pointless posts/comments at the end. It is as if you have impressed these mopes so much with your witty repartee that you have stolen from them the ability to write a coherent thought. Thanks for the fun read.

LW said...

That's not even a disc wheel, it's a $60 disc cover. I'm just speechless.

Anonymous said...

Agree with anon at 7:56. The blog gets a lot of comments but none make sense. Snob you use some kind of comment spammer to look good on the outside?

Critical Ass said...

2:11, is that you?

frilly said...

AP, I just read Vino wants to come back to Astana. How funny will that be? Bet Frank's thrilled to see that take the headlines.

Poor AC.

Andy Pandy said...

Why don't you track down poor old AC and give him a hug from both of us. Must be a hard gig to win the big ones and get turfed for ageing and dubious riders

Andy Pandy said...

Can you get a comment spammer at Park Tools??? and would it fit in your rear pockets

ken e. said...

some people will never understand great comedy.
-just saying "more brakes!"

Anonymous said...

I lost my black Specialized Crosstail Sport on the Upper West Side near Yogi's at 76th and Broadway. If anyone sees it let me know.

Thanks,
Neil

Anonymous said...

Photoshopped. Obviously.

Anonymous said...

Not only is that a sweet-ass disc cover on that Origin8 monstrosity, it's covering up one of the only Mavic Speed City wheels I've seen in use. What's even more disappointing is the fact that you can't see the rows of LEDs he has meticulously affixed to almost every straight section of that bike. Just keep your eyes open around Boston and you'll have to see him at some point.

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