Thursday, August 28, 2014

BSNYC Product Review: State Bicycle Co. Saturday Deluxe

Hello!

Before anything else, let it be known that after today I will not be posting until Thursday, September 4th, at which point I will resume regular updates.

Happy Labouring Day and all of that.

Also, it's extremely important that during that time you buy a hat!


It's only the greatest bike riding hat ever made, that's all.  (And yes, we're talking about augmenting the hat offerings somehow, but whether that means different colors or adding an integrated fan remains to be seen.)

Meanwhile, the holiday may be nigh, but I put the "pro" in "non-productive," so in the meantime I'm pleased to present you with a thorough(ish) review of the State Bicycle Co. "Saturday Deluxe," which you may recall I took delivery of not too long ago:


So far, I've been pleased with this bicycle (both aesthetically and functionally), but the time had come for a serious test, that being a New York City commute spanning three (3) boroughs and including two (2) river crossings.

Moreover, the day of the test was also either the last or penultimate (I forget which) day of the NYPD's "Operation Safe Cycle" bicycle crackdown, so in addition to testing the State, I'd also be testing my own ability to avoid gratuitous ticketing.

To be honest, while I was looking forward to a long ride on the State (about 17 miles or so one way, which is a pretty decent schlep on a singlespeed with only a coaster brake), I wasn't feeling optimistic about my prospects as far as not getting a ticket.  Firstly, I was heading to Brooklyn, home of the sorts of hapless transplants the NYPD loves to stop.  Secondly, I was riding a very precious-looking bicycle, making me look like yet another hapless transplant.  Thirdly, while I planned to go out of my way to obey the traffic laws, there's very little correlation between obeying traffic laws on a bicycle and not being stopped by the NYPD.

Also, I was secretly hoping to get pulled over, because I was using the Fly6 integrated tail light camera, so maybe I'd get the whole thing on video.

In any case, I stuffed some supplies into my hobo bindle (in this case a neon green IMBA World Summit schwag bag), secured it in the front rack with a cargo net, and I was on my way:


One feature particular to riding in big cities like New York and Chicago is elevated subway tracks:


If you ride directly under the tracks there's not much room for maneuvering due to the supports, and if you ride alongside them you're constantly subjected to hastily-flung car doors and delivery trucks pulling over right in front of you:


(That's a regular photo, not a Fly6 still.)

I circumvented that particular truck and pressed on:


Owing to the crackdown I'd resolved to follow all the traffic laws.  However, it wasn't long before my resolve had broken.  See this bridge?



Technically you're supposed to dismount and walk across it.  Yeah, right.  I'll dismount and walk across the bridge just as soon as they require drivers to get out of their cars and push those across, too.

Now I was off the mainland and on the island of Manhattan, where I was pleased to find that Seaman Ave. had been newly surfaced:


There is nothing more pleasant than rolling on smooth Seaman.

However, my pleasure was short-lived, because somewhere around the intersection of Seaman and Cumming:


(Never gets old.  Never!!!)

The new pavement gave way to this:


Thus affording me a chance to test the State's vibration-damping characteristics:


The wide-ish tires kept me reasonably comfortable on the savaged surface of Seaman, though my hobo bindle was rattling around in the rack rather loudly, and it had me thinking it wouldn't be a bad idea to fit the rack's wooden surface with some sort of rubber cover, something I will never, ever get around to doing.

Like Mario Cipollini checking out of a hotel room, I left Seaman behind, at which point I had an opportunity to administer the "portaging test," because in order to get onto the Hudson River Greenway you have to ascend some steps:



When you factor in the full front rack the Saturday Deluxe isn't exactly light, though it's not so heavy you'd have too much trouble carrying it up to your apartment.  In this case though I outsmarted gravity by rolling the bike up the side of the staircase.  I also generally ride down these stairs when I'm traveling the other way, which is especially enjoyable when you're on a road bike and you pass people gingerly walking their full-suspension bikes.

Continuing on, I came to a steep descent--which is a steep ascent when you're headed north, which may explain why this rider looks so nonplussed:


Note my inner thigh visible in the upper right-hand corner as I position my scranus over the rear wheel to maximize the efficacy of the coaster brake:


This being a bike review, I next stopped at a famous landmark for an impromptu bicycle photo shoot:


That's the George Washington Bridge and the so-called "Little Red Lighthouse," subject of the famous children's book of the same name:


Your child will love the part where the Governor of New Jersey creates a traffic jam on the Great Gray Bridge on purpose.

Here's me taking a picture of the bike:


You may also notice a wet spot slowly forming in my crotchal area, which is sweat dripping down my body and being absorbed by my pants.

Here's me remounting the State:


Noticed I walked the bicycle along the path because the State is not rated as a gravel bike by the World International Gravel Bike Association.

Continuing downtown, I left the George Washington Bridge behind:


And overtook two people on an e-bike:


(Regular photo again, not Fly6.)

I assumed the passenger was a child, but the Fly6 reveals a fully grown adult:


By this point I began to realize I was going to have a hard time convincing anybody that the dark patch in the front of my pants was not urine:


Pants-wetting, of course, is nature's way of revealing fear and vulnerability, which would help explain why I was soon subjected to shirtless Cat 6 attacks:


When you get to the general vicinity of the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum the Hudson River Greenway begins to see a lot of pedestrian traffic, hence these bicycle-specific traffic signals nobody obeys:


I'm not sure why, during a highly-publicized crackdown during which the NYPD is stopping cyclists for everything and anything, riders don't at least go through the motions in order to avoid tickets:


Why make it easier for them, you know?

I was now schvitzing like an elderly man in a steamroom, and so I stopped at a bench to mop my brow and engage in some more bicycle photography:


The dark strip down the front of my shirt should tell you all you need to know:


Then I left the greenway and headed across town, where I watched a driver in an Audi SUV flip a u-turn right in front of the woman riding in the bike lane in front of me, forcing her to stop abruptly.  He appeared to be parking, but then he lunged back into traffic again as I passed:


I do my best not to engage drivers but between the heat and the dickishness of the maneuver I couldn't help but give him a piece of my mind, and to my amazement at the next light he went out of his way to apologize.  Here he is in mid-apology:


At first I was amazed, but after awhile it dawned on me that between my plaintive, nasal, whiny delivery and my wet crotch he probably thought I had pissed myself in fear and took pity on me:


Hey, whatever works.

Shortly thereafter I got caught in a traffic bottleneck due to construction.  With the crackdown still in full effect there was no way I was going to ride on the sidewalk, and so I did a cyclocross dismount and walked the bike past the blockage instead:


Then I remounted:


And the bars immediately rotated downward because apparently I hadn't tightened the stem bolt enough:




So I now looked like this guy:


Only with a sweaty crotch.

I fixed the problem and continued on, encountering the usual assortment of bike lane obstructions:


I suspected this was an undercover sting and 50 officers would leap from the truck as soon as I went around it, but fortunately this was not the case:

Moments later, I was overtaken by a "fixiebro:"


Who crowded me in an aggressive manner as we rounded the corner:


I guess when you've got a pretty bike and a wet crotch even people who ride in gym shorts think they've got something on you.

Passing through SoHo, I encountered this photo shoot involving a dog:


(Again, regular photo, not Fly6.)

And then a short while later I passed this guy intently photographing something at a microbial level:


Leaving Manhattan behind, I crossed the Manhattan Bridge to Brooklyn:


Successfully negotiated the descent with my coaster brake:


Passed the shitty bike art:



And finally locked up the State, my wardrobe positively drenched with perspiration:


In the end, there's very little not to like about this bike, with the exception of the bell, which I still haven't figured out:


(?)

So if you're looking for a pretty and inexpensive townie and you don't need none of them fancy gears or handbrakes, this bicycle will fit the bill rather nicely.

And with that, I'm off to wring the last few drops of sweat from the summer.  Thanks for reading, ride safe, and happy Labor Day.

See you again on September 4th.


--Wildcat Rock Machine



376 comments:

1 – 200 of 376   Newer›   Newest»
Anonymous said...

Texas Scranus

JB said...

Fly 6 crotch shots!

Vernal Magina said...

jeepers.

Flyover BC said...

Podium?

Anonymous said...

poopy bum

Spokey said...

well

at least top 10-dia

Spokey said...

i'll read the post later. time to toodle around town while it's still nice and windy

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Reclined comfortably in the top 10.

BamaPhred said...

Scranus

erikbeng said...

Shirtless Cat 6 Motto: "Drops, Not Tops!"

JLRB said...

Capturing the spirit of labor Day by sweating your dick off - brilliant show of support

Anonymous said...

it's amazing how many people you got who seem to be staring right into your fly6.

or is there something else they were looking at?

DB said...

I see where the Dyckman Bar is only a block from the intersection is Seaman and Cumming.

Anonymous said...

Small basket...
and I don't mean on the bike.

grog said...

Saturday Deluxe on Thursday.
RING BELL
LABO RDAY
RIDE NICE

Kenny Banya said...

Perhaps the bell requires a hammer, and it fell out during shipment.

Anonymous said...

It appears the rear rack is not aligned with the rear fender... Maybe optical, maybe mechanical. If I were State, I'd issue a C&D.

BamaPhred said...

The State looks like a great ride. How was it on the way back? Or was public trans a better option?

No Snob for another week, and Moots lust at a fever pitch.

Tad Salyards said...

That type of bell needs to be "flicked" clockwise or counter-clockwise, not up/down (insert clitoral joke here) in order to function. Be warned that even when used properly it will still likely suck as a bell.

Comment deleted said...

Have a nice 7-day weekend, you bastard.

Gaffer Smythe said...

I like to follow along with these "adventures" on the maps of the google. It's like a vacation without the travel, risk, or interaction with the public. Thx Snob!

Anonymous said...

The wonky rack annoyed me too. Does the gym short fixie bro have his fork backwards or is it distortion on the edge of the fly6 shot?

leroy said...

Dear Mr. BSNYC --

My dog asked me to post that the BSNYC hat wicks away wet dog smell so well that I don't know he's been borrowing it.

Hey, wait a minute. I just got that.

Ride safe all!

Vernal Magina said...

your 'fixiebro' looks a lot like Liev Schreiber.

RoadQueen said...

Top 30?

Anonymous said...

Jeeesus you're a lazy blogger.

Tilford totally kicks your ass in post count. How does that make you feel?

crosspalms said...

Maybe apologizing driver guy was just trying to score some caviar from the Solex Catsmo truck. I thought maybe it was a refrigerated truck delivering frozen cats to some greasy spoon, but Mr. Internet tells me that no, it is in fact a purveyor of luxury foods. They will sell you a wild hare or pheasant, but no cat, according to the "wild game" page. Or they'll sell you a grouse. But be warned: "We find one grouse a bit too much for a person, but half a grouse more than a bit too little. My advice? Give your guests one bird per person and save the leftovers for grouse soup later."

Freddy Murcks said...

Jesus. You come back for three f'in days and now you're leaving again. I demand a refund.

3G said...

Sweaty balls

Roille Figners said...

That's the worst, when you yell at somebody for almost killing you (or somebody), and then they're all like "OMG I'm sooooo sorry!" and you feel like a shit for yelling at them. I've carried that guilt around for 2, 3 hours sometimes. Even though they almost killed me.

Blog Drafter said...

RODEHARD
PUTUPWET
RIDESAFE

gE said...

Um yeah, I'd buy a hat except they make me look dorky. Or dorkier anyway. I just can't afford to go any further with that look. Plus, you know, I'd have to buy a whole new wardrobe to go with the cycling cap and, well, I'm about as lazy as a bike blogger, so that's not going to happen.

Roille Figners said...

Yeah it's tempting but how do you reconcile a hat so awesome with an otherwise bland/humdrum/workaday/mundane/ho-hum/yaddayadda/everyday/inconspicuous/blending-in/totally-not-a-serial-killer wardrobe?

Glory said...

"Hey, don't apologize, just try harder not to kill people in the future!"

Actually I think I'll start using that line when people yell at me to get out the fucking street.

Roille Figners said...

...which is what mine is. If I were actively mating it would be different.

crosspalms said...

Roille,
If you put the hat on backwards then put your helmet on over it, you reduce the awesomeness to more manageable levels.

Roille Figners said...

Yes, indeed it is a matter of mitigating unmanageable awesomeness.

Fred of the Sea said...

Yeah, contrite motorists are pretty sickening, especially when you just went raging psycho on them, but it's still better than trying to run away in bikie shoes.

I'm going to satisfy my Moots lust by getting my old road frame out of storage and sending it to the builder to get the rear cold set to 130 mm, etc, etc. Anyone in the market for some Nuovo Record?

Anonymous said...

Top 10

Anonymous said...

You must have giggled a little after your wrote this:

"Like Mario Cipollini checking out of a hotel room, I left Seaman behind,"

charles b said...

That is why I wear dark colored pants in hot weather, which in turn might make me sweat more...

P. Bateman said...

BikeSnob? more like BikeSlob. good lord you sweat a lot for a skinny-ish guy.

good choice on the sunglasses. very handsome.

and thank you for considering the additional colour ways.

p.s. - i'm glad you like the bike, but i'm still not convinced that it's not gay as the bejeezus. sorry.

Fred of the Sea said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
balls™ said...

I've got fans like that in my underwear. You should try it.

crosspalms said...

Speaking of riding under elevated tracks, Wells Street in Chicago sports these signs, which cheer me up every time I see them. I've still been honked at under there, but not nearly as much as before the signs went up.

Dooth said...

Wildcat, whilst you and fixiebro rode through Father Demo Square, a Citibike commuter waved at you. A fan!

PotbellyJoe said...

Ain't nothin' wrong with a coaster brake cruiser...

...so long as the rider knows how to get it off of the sidewalk.

Fred of the Sea said...

Yes. Forgot to mention how much I appreciated the Cipollini line. …being a seaman myself and all.

crosspalms said...

Fred of the Sea,
Barnacle, jetty, seaman......I think Snob's headed your way.

Anonymous said...

OK doggy photo shoot: Is the woman on the left part of it, or just a passer-by obediently letting them get the shot before walking through? Because I never do that.

Anonymous said...

fodder

Fred of the Sea said...

Crosspalms,

The "Just Kidding" couple look disturbingly familiar.

And the busy, narrow, 4-lane I ride about 1/4 mi on twice a day has those signs, too. Definitely keeps the honking, shouting, and attempted manslaughter down.

Anonymous said...

Looks like fixie bro is riding a langster. I'm a little ashamed to admit that I recently replaced my old and heavy steel single speed scraptante with a Langster, put on a freewheel though with the curvy TdF style bar-handles. changed the cheap shitty crankset and bottom bracket (and seat). I have to admit that I love the bike. I was on the steel, fenders, racks, brooks, etc bandwagon for a while but the thing was just too heavy and slow. who cares? no one except me, but a slow day here in the orifice.

janine said...

Consider sage leaf pills for the sweating.

crosspalms said...

You gave up a steel bike for people who write like this? Hang your head in shame, o Anon 3:02! Anyway, more gears take care of some of that heavy/slow problem.

gE said...

Anon 2:05, looks backwards to me but I think it's a Special--ed tradmarked design. If you put your fork on backwards, prepare to be sued.

Mario said...

Ah, so you left for vacation yesterday and used this "stock" post that you had been saving for just the appropriate occasion. Damn, you're a smart motherfucker. Ordinarily this type of "shill post" for State would've pissed me off, but luckily you're also a fairly funny motherfucker.

Roille Figners said...

I'M A GAS-FORCE TO BE RECKONED WITH!

Spokey said...

i was thinking of a hat but being a cheap bastard (yes i've won cheap awards from friend(?)) I didn't as I dithered.

Now it makes no sense after reading we're talking about augmenting the hat offerings somehow

An augmented hat will be a much better deal and i'll be able to shout scranus from the rooftops. as soon as we save up enough for roofs that is.

Oh and of course say nyah, nyah, nyah, to all you with non-augmented hats

Anonymous said...

I rode a Ross coaster brake bike through middle school, but it seems to me that an adult city bike should have a front brake that works, for the occasional "oh S--t, that guy is cutting me off" moment. There are times for upright sitting on a cruise around town vs leaning forward on the drops on the Langster.

JLRB said...

I am shocked to report that my (non-augmented) woo hoo speed hat has actually been received with approval by MrsJLRB. I thought for sure it would meet a nose upturned like the bill of the hat, but no - it was admired, and got me laid.

fin

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Hey Crosspalms that's cool. I see that Wells st. is near Wacker drive. Of course I had to g**gle that.

"The upper level is normally known as Upper Wacker Drive and the lower level is Lower Wacker Drive. A short part has a third level, sometimes called Lower Lower Wacker Drive."

-Says the wiki.

Ya'll got some interesting places in them big cities.

RoadQueen said...

JLRB - can't ask for better than a hat that will get you laid.

Hey Snob, you forgot to advertise that the hats will not only wick sweat and make you faster, but will also get you laid.

Blaise Pascal said...

Feel my force and reckon with me!

dancesonpedals said...

the best thing about that park are the extra-large portapotties, for the handicapped. They're big enough to bring a bike inside, so those of us who are handicapped by the fear of bike-theft while whizzing can whiz in peace.

The next best thing about that park is the fluorescent green paint, marking the rough spots. Good trail stewardship.

Lumpen Fredetariat said...

dop - second that. Portapotties not designed for disabled access are also usually too small to unzip a jersey and get the bibs off, with the added fear of everything falling out of your jersey pocket into the chemical miasma.

Dries said...

Your clothes much needs the wicking fabric of the Woohoo Cap.

crosspalms said...

RCT,
The building I work in has a room in the basement where you can lock your bike. But you can only get to it from the parking garage, and you can only get to the parking garage from Lower Wacker Drive. Too exciting for me (as I found out the day I left my lock at home and had to use the place). Delivery trucks, cars in a hurry, no bike lanes, blind curves, no shoulders.

I got lost on Lower Lower Wacker once; thought I'd discovered a shortcut from the Lakefront path to Michigan Avenue, but once you get lost it isn't much of a shortcut anymore. Not much traffic down there, but enough weird dead-ends to keep a person busy.

Roille Figners said...

With a name like Saturday Deluxe I think you pretty much know what's up: People dancing, people laughing, a man selling ice cream, singing Italian songs, "eh Cumpari, ci vo sunari," can you dig it, yes I can.

Roille Figners said...

Shit, now I'm stuck singing that. THANKS A LOT, SELF!

Svetty Balls said...

Dries @ 4:20 - good point - maybe Waltz can develop wicking bike shorts of a breathable fabric - maybe something like lycra with a soft inner moisture absorbing liner. Nah

Fred of the Sea said...

Slow motion riders
Blah-dee-bloo-dee-dee-dee-deee

Fuck, me too, and I hate that song!

gE said...

Okay, now I'm convinced JLRB is just RTMS trolling his own blog. I'm going to have to go back and look at previous comments to confirm. Oh wait, I'm losing interest. Never mind.

wishiwasmerckx said...

Eben, have fun in Florida this weekend and please convey my best wishes to your Bubbe and Zayde when you are visiting with them in Miami.

(Hint, take the fly 6 to Haulover beach and leave it running all day.)

Drock said...

Me ride long today and sweat did reach between my legs too. Wow I'm like snob

Pridzzle said...

On that bike, Snobby, you have facility for two (2) water bottle cages and yet you haven't installed any.

You've outed yourself as an enthusiastic urinater in the past and now we learn you sweat in torrents. You need to rehydrate, mate, you'll get cramps and experience hallucinations. You'll start seeing preposterous things like people photographing gutters, signs spruiking a garden of yachts and drivers actually apologising to cyclists!!!

And I'm quite certain the "bell" is merely decorative. Just polish it once in a while or leave it alone if you prefer the vintage patina'd look.

Roille Figners said...

It's a long way to 100... if ya wanna rock 'n' roll.

Anonymous said...

It's a long way to the shop... if ya wanna sausage roll.

Old Spice said...

It would seem that Wildcat wears a sweatshirt all the time.

Dooth said...

Fuckin Chicago Transit Authority...my first concert in '77(?) at Central Park. Vivid flashback: a loose joints dealer...the crowd going wild hearing "Saturday in the park"..."old days" indeed.

dancesonpedals said...

snobs gotta do what a snobs gotta do...feed 17 children, pay riverdale rent...so he takes a few pages from biciclecycling magazine & puts the ads amongst the content...what the hey...I love a good fly six adventure...the moots wqsn't an ad, but they certainly got exposure for a few days comping (death to the apostrophe)

Anonymous said...

People really do seem to stare at you a lot. Maybe it really is all about you.

Also, try mounting the bell on the left. Dummy.

David Pearce said...

Dear Wildcat,

The Bell.

Jesus, man! I already told you how to fix the bell, and you don't take my advice! Believe me, man, I KNOW IT! I'm down with the struggle. I've walked the walk and talked the talk, bell-wise. It might HELP, you maroon, to move Clara's clapper (apologies Johnny Carson) more to your thumb area, but, whatever. Refer to your previous Saturday Deluxe comments page. You can lead a horse to water.....

Now on to your excessive hyperhidrosis.

Dude, have you ever heard about shorts? I'm not a family man, so maybe the Secret Society of Fathers is not allowed to wear shorts, I don't know. All I do know is you wouldn't catch ME biking in a pair of slim-fit long pants until I goddam had to, which ain't in August. Don't you care about the long pants dragging over your knees with each revolution? I'd never put up with it. And on a single speed. Jeez, what is up with that? You wear long pants, and then do a photo essay on your sweat-drenched family jewels. Makes no sense. No sense to me. I guess you folks in NYC are more evolved than I. It's a shonda, but there it is.

Enjoy your vacation, and time at the shooting range, giving the coup de grâce to the ailing body of summer while you're at it. Come to think of it, you're always working for us, even when you're on vacation! You're such a mensch!

Anonymous said...

Dance Son Pedals,

Death to the ellipsis!!!

David Pearce said...

Dear Mr. Anonymous, 1:57 p.m.,

You got dat right. Looks like Monsieur Vélo Snob is better with his fingers tip-typing out his blogue than assembling bicycles. Perhaps. But who am I to judge? But it does brings Lou Reed to my mind:

"She said, 'Hey, sugar, shove it over to the drive-side".

And the colored girls go.....

dop said...

mr pearce...sounds like a clssic clapper caper...were they by any chance made of copper (I saw that 40 years ago)

anonymous at 8:07...celine was an influence...from way back...as a child I produced litotes and syllogisms like so much shit in my diaper...you have to understand..it was for my own good

Jed said...

I once wiped out on Cummings and Seaman.
Nice, moist post today, Sir Schvitzalot.

McFly said...

It always takes me 2 or 3 Fly6 still-lifes to realize you are not salmoning upstream to spawn. Cause the camera is on the BACK.

Evo2 Mitsubishi said...

Would love a hat, but for those of us who are not metrically challenged, 46 is nowhere near Fred woo-hoo-hoo-hoo speed. Any chance of a 74 hat?

Daniel said...

Hey Bikesnob,
Killed any cyclists while you were working? Well, if you are a police officer, that's no problem at all! Just an unfortunate mishap.

PotbellyJoe said...

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Reynolds-953-stainless-steel-frame-w-polished-with-55-5cm-effective-top-tube-/171437904296?pt=US_Bicycles_Frames&hash=item27ea7ed1a8

This has to be the most douchetastic eBay listing I have ever made it through 50% of the first sentence of.

Anonymous said...

Surely an elevated subway is just a train.

Anonymous said...

If fin got laid Bike Snob's getting paid. Gettin' one.

Anonymous said...

94

Anonymous said...

95

Anonymous said...

96

Anonymous said...

97

Anonymous said...

98

Anonymous said...

99

dop said...

century

dop said...

century...damn pipped...capcha didn't clear

dop said...

no, she went throuigh

JLRB said...

Daniel @ 11:33 - how messed up is that? Urgent message? Pick up the radio thing like they used on the old time police shows or pull the fuck over to type a message. Fuck.

James said...

Cops are "exempt" from mobile device laws. Just like cops are exempt from parking laws and government vehicles are exempt from parking tickets. What is law if it doesn't apply to everyone?

Rouri Cook said...

You've featured that "fixed bro" in a much more positive manner in the past.

JB said...

An elevated subway is just a way.

semi serious cyclist said...

Such epic urban portaging and adventure! I love the 'deep insights' into greater NYC the new fly cam has inspired you to. In this latest foray into the wilds of manhattan, the crotchal area 'fly cam' of sweated out dungarees is a bit too much, even for such a stauch and intimate friend of cycling such as myself. If you're sweating out so bad you headed to looking like you've lost bladder control, SLOW DOWN!

However, thoroughly inspiring all. you exposition makes NYC look genteel. except for the shoals of ticketing boys in blue, that is. just wait till they start deploying the spike strips.

Bryan said...

Terrific post! I personally attest to the cap you are trying to get us all to buy. Mine finally came in a few weeks ago, and ever since I have happily been no better than I was before, which to me is great news! Consistency is key. I will say it has been nice having a brim block out the morning sun from my eyes on my ride into work. The sweat wicking capabilities has been crucial to my successes in the South Carolina heat.
Okay, last Saturday I did set a bunch of PRs on Strava - I am 100% totally giving credit to the cap.

McFly said...

No JB....it's a......highway.

Anonymous said...

An elevated train cis a highway, but I'm with JB, an elevated subway must be just a way.

No, way said...

highway vs way
ti vs steel vs plutonium (the half-life effect is awesome!)

Anonymous said...

In that second photo of fixiebro, it looks like the fork is mounted backwards on his bike. Is that a fisheye effect of the Fly6?

BikeSnobNYC said...

Anonymous 12:34am,

Sure, and an airplane on the runway is just a car.

--Wildcat Rock Machine

JLRB said...

Semi-serious travel bieke question: I picked up parts to convert my salsa Casserolle to single speed, but am thinking about using the parts on my travel bieke instead because the 7 speed set up it came with is pretty much beat to hell.

I see the advantage as less crap to deal with on the reassembly, two less cable splitters to mess with (not that they are complicated), no derailleurs to damage in the luggage/adjust for shifting etc.

Obvious disadvantage is if I go somewhere with lots of steeps I'd be limited. Not sure if removable chain links are good/bad/indifferent on single speed vs geared bieke.

Other advantages/disadvantages?

NoCableBOT9000 said...

JLRB:

You want a 2 speed coaster brake rear hub on your travel bike. I'm sure you can figure out the advantages and can live with the disadvantages.

http://www.sturmey-archer.com/products/hubs/cid/7.html

https://www.sram.com/sram/urban/products/automatix

test said...

photo

Fred of the Sea said...

An underground highway is just a way, too, right?

ScotFolkSongBOT9000 said...

Right;

You take the high road and I'll take the low road...

Spokey said...

DoP

congrats on the century.

given that our lazy scribe is off for another week there should be a couple more podiums to vie for.

But I must say that an honest man is not up at that hour of the morning. Unless you're on another planet or something. Like maybe you're in France? But then an honest man . . .

Spokey said...

JLRB

I'm normally agin electronic shifting but I guess that would help in the traveling bike cable dept.

Are there any of those 14 or so speed internal hubs with electronic shifting?

babble on said...

Eddy Merckx is in hospital following a heart scare. :(

wishiwasmerckx said...

By way of contrast, I am feeling absolutely fine this morning.

Anonymous said...

sell out

Anonymous said...

Why would they paint seamen street blue?

semi serious cyclist said...

just throw that travel bike shite in the box and have at 'er. What's the worst that can happen - you might have to fix something?

I used to think bayonet pedals and fancy cable splitters made the difference with the traveler checkbox bike. i may try once more, because i think, it just might, come together real quick and easy, but otherwise it seemed like little added payoff timewise in assembling a traveler boxbike

dancesonpedals said...

hoverbike the end times are upon us...but an honest man can have a cup of coffee while feeding the dog & browse

crosspalms said...

dop
That's quite a Q-factor on the hoverbike

Fred of the Sea said...

It was custom built for Sen. Craig, but he never picked it up.

1904 Cadardi said...

Spokey,

Are you talking about the Shimano Alfine Di2? Looks cool, but I'm way too cheap to drop that kind of cash to avoid a little work assembling a bike out of a case.

dop said...

not that there's anything wrong with that

Fred of the Sea said...

So is this "al fine" as in the musical notation, "to the end" or rhymes with "alpine" and means even less?

Sherrif Kills Bicyclist. No Charges said...

Out on the West Coast, Law Enforcement kills bicyclist with patrol car because he was typing on the computer in the car. Another blog claims text messages were also sent in the moments immediately before the death by patrol car.

DA WILL NOT PRESS CHARGES

Deputy runs over cyclist

Blogging dude adds details to LEP running over bicyclist

This is pretty common for Southern California. The guy killed was even an entertainment lawyer guy. It's an industry town, but apparently Sherriff's dept and DA can flip them off anyway.

If I screwed up the URL's then the one in the name will take you to the story.

Spokey said...


1904 Cadardi

didn't have that one in mind in particular, but yeah that type. Didn't even know if they existed yet but figured someone probably had one by now.

Personally I would opt for the splitters. Don't want to be dependent on anything too tech when the apocalypse comes. Never know. You might have to get replacement batteries from a zombie and pay with a chunk of brain. Maybe the rest here have spare brain but I'm a bit in deficit already.

What I'd like to see is a better NuVinci hub with maybe 19-115 gear inches and a less embarrassing shifter. Ideally hooked up as a barcon.

BamaPhred said...

Nothing to see here, move along, move along.

But the taxpayers of Ca will probably get to participate in funding a rather healthy financial payout to the victim's estate.

Anonymous said...

"What I'd like to see is a better NuVinci hub with maybe 19-115 gear inches..."

I'll like to see an efficiency test on the NuVinci hub. Looking at the diagrams of the DiVinci on-line, I'm thinking it is not very efficient at the 50 to 120 watt level most people ride at most of the time.

Roille Figners said...

Ever pedal one though? It's HAWT.

Roille Figners said...

So I have this cheep-ass wheelset. Well I kept getting flats in the same spot. On the rim side, not the road side. Each time I scrutinized the rim, looking for a defect, finding none. UNTIL it occurred to me to look UNDER the rim tape, whereupon I discovered crescent-shaped and pointy-sharp shards of metal leftover from drilling the spoke holes. The clowns at the factory hadn't even de-burred the holes. Dicks. Hence there was no visible or feel-able puncture mechanism with the tire removed, but at pressure, it was just enough to put a tiny pinhole through the rim tape and the tube, and go flat in about 6 hours. You beleedatshit?

NoNeedToThankMeBOT9000 said...

"...cheep-ass wheelset."

That's the part that makes it believable.

Roille Figners said...

OK insert your own closing sentence then, e.g.
"How about that, boy howdy I tell ya?"
"It's always something!"
"Sometimes ya just can't win!"
"If only I were rich I wouldn't have any problems ever!"
"Golly!"

Comment deleted said...

Waddyagunnado?

Flyover BC said...

I thin I found the ultimate portagible touring bike.

In the absence of the snob, I'd like some opinions

http://santafe.craigslist.org/bik/4642891765.html

Flyover BC said...

I had a problem where the port for the valve stem was cutting the tube/stem joint. I polished the edges and went to much higher pressure tires, which fixed the problem, as long as the tire pressure stayed over 95 psi.

Opinions?IGotThemBOT9000 said...

"...the ultimate portagible touring bike."

A folding bike with clipless pedals? So you get to where you need to fold the bike and you have to change shoes? I guess it has a front rack to carry the left walking shoe and a rear rack for the other shoe.

BamaPhred said...

You had me at cheep-ass

Roille Figners said...

Oy, would it kill these schmendricks to show a picture of it folded up? You would think "just Google it" but, nebuch, that turns up bupkes.

1904 Cadardi said...

"Well that just figures."

Spokey,

What, a $1500 Rolhoff isn't good enough? Too Germanic?

I picked up a used Ritchey Breakaway, and aside from the 30 minutes it takes to disassemble-pack/unpack-assemble, it's pretty sweet. I don't mind the half hour spent on my bike, it's the half-hour I have to spend on the girlfriend's bike each time. I decided she looks better without major facial scars, so I assemble it for her without too much grousing.

JB said...

Roille,

I had the same exact problem, except the rims are (I assume) decent Mavics from the early 90s. A filing and new rim tape solved the problem.

Roille Figners said...

I'm-a-git the deburrer out, and then the round file. That shit's unacceptable. "Wouldn't ya know?!"

Part deux of the story, Being The Encounter of Roille Figners with a Fred in the Opposite Helpfulway to Snobbo's GWB Pump-Demanding Aero-Fred, coming up.

crosspalms said...

"Oh, well, it takes all kinds."

Anonymous said...

Now y'all see what a dick he is. And he don't care.

Anonymous said...

Not talking about Snobby.

babble on said...

That's good to hear, WIWM!

Roille Figners said...

Yeah, what a dick he is! Finally we see!

Anonymous said...

'This has to be the most douchetastic eBay listing I have ever made it through 50% of the first sentence of."

I made it through almost 3 sentences before passing out. If there could be a more douchetastic listing I don't want to know about it.

BamaPhred said...

Oh Gawd, with no Snob I've been forced to read the newz.

There's illegals behind every bush and terrorists under every rock.

And besides that, my tinfoil hat is kiillllliiiiinnnnnggg me.

Going to go ride.

Comment deleted said...

It is what it is.

Flyover BC said...

Can't fold the folder because the drops, the fenders, and the racks are in the way, I guess.

Herr Foldenvolk said...

Schlumpf Drive is the cats ass (Don't really want to know where that expression originated) for folding bikes. Uber German engineering and quality materials make it a 'must' for getting more out of your hard to ride ride.

Spokey said...

1904 Cadardi

nuttin agin the teuts

I've got Busch & Müller 4DToplight Senso taillights on my touring bikes.

And I've been thinking of getting a new americano. they have a Rolhoff with a gates belt that I'd consider although it's something like $1700 more.

But I think the nuvinci is really intriguing. Seems like a perfect solution. Get your cadence exactly where you want it with the twist of a dial whether on the flats, uphill or whatever

Spokey said...

Roille

that's why you spend the big bucks and go nashbar. I ponied up $40 for a set back in the mid-late eighties that are still going strong. Nice strong 36 front and 40 rear.

dop said...

roille-

I'm sorry about your cheap wheelset, though I'm impressed by your tenacity in finding the solution. I think the lessn here is that with slave labor, the products made on Tuesday-Thursday are just as shitty as those made on Monday &Friday.

Fred of the Sea said...

As long as the conversation has wandered to bicycles, here's a clueless Fred question: What kind of kit should I update my early 80s road racer with? Expense is not a major consideration, but I am on old crumb with no plans to compete again and I care more about being able to fix stuff than I do about weight. I do, however, want to make the bike as ridable as possible and thrash around the roads on it, not post photos of how vintagy and Camporiginal it is.

I figure this group will give me the broad, mechanico-esthetic and social perspective, not a bunch of douchetasm.

Comment deleted said...

Roille, thank you for prompting a riffage on meaning-devoid conversation end-tags.

I've always thought we could just as well burp our agreement/commiseration/indifference, but ah well, that's the way the cookie crumbles.

Anonymous said...

"What kind of kit should I update my early 80s road racer with?"

Step one, see what the rear spacing is. 126 mm limits you to a 7 speed cassette. 130 mm lets you use 8-9-10 speeds. If the frame is steel you can cold-set 126 mm to 130. Al frame, you can't.

You said you "care more about being able to fix stuff". If you care about stuff not wearing out you should consider 7 to 8 speed chain/chain rings and cassettes. The 9 and 10 speed stuff is thinner and wears out faster. But it is tough to find new 7 and 8 speed stuff now-a-days, and it is almost all low end stuff.

A lot of people think brifters make make riding easier and more fun. Fewer people think dual pivot brake calipers are better than the old single pivot ones. If you are getting new wheels resist the urge to go to fewer than 32 spokes. Low spoke count wheels are harder to straighten.

If you really want to get crazy and educe maintenance to the bear minimum, go with an Alfine 8 or 11 speed hub. you can get a brifter shifter for either of them.

Spokey said...

Blogger Fred of the Sea

and what will you possibly do with any answers from this group? Other than of course assume that they are bizarro answers and go the opposite way.

And impossible to say in the general sense. I know that how I would outfit a bike would be very different than the young studs who are here. For example, I'm not likely to buy a new bike that didn't have a triple cranks and a low gear of 20 inches, preferably less (consideration of my continuously sore knees). Wouldn't accept a wheel that didn't take at least a 35mm tire. Or a bike that couldn't accommodate fenders, racks, a kickstand, etc.

Spokey said...

anon @ 5:12 PM

i have bought a 6 sp freewheel a couple years ago. Don't remember where. Probably either amazon or harris cyclery. Harris will order anything you can find in the QBP catalog. i think they will also build custom cassettes.

Got a 7 sp hyperglide last year from amazon.

Got sram chains for 8 & 9 sp last year from amazon.

the common stuff seems available but yeah maybe if you're going rip it down to the frame and rebuild everything, you might have to search awhile. i do find new old stock from time to time on ebay. haven't done that much but so far I haven't had any issues with buying that stuff from ebay.

I am finding that if I'm not careful I get 4mm cable housing. Are most new bikes using that. Getting 5mm housing isn't a problem. Just need to take care.

Fred of the Sea said...

The rear spacing is currently 126, but part of the plan is to cold set out to 130. I would be perfectly happy with an 8-speed cassette, but the high-endish stuff all seems to be 10 or 11. I like the dual pivot brakes I have on one of my commuters and find they center much better than the old NR ones on the bike in question.

Good question, Spokey. The frame itself kind of settles the broad question of what kind of bike it is. And I think the opinion here is a hell of a lot more intelligent than one generally hears from bikies, with all that idiocy about "stiffness" and "ride". You guys also crack me up.

Fred of the Sea said...

I don't seem to have any trouble finding Shimano 7-speed cassettes and 7/8-speed chains of various types.

dop said...

I've had a campy chorus 8 gruppo on my circa 1996 fred sled..over the years I've replaced worn components with NOS from ebay or my current favorite, chainreaction cycles. (free shipping over $99 from Northern Ireland) most of my replacement components (rear hub, rear der, cassete) have been record, wonderful for that smidgeon of turgidity, but I'm quite happy with that veloce brake lever-shifter off ebay

Anonymous said...

Any new rear derailleur will work with 7-8-9-10 speed cassettes, high end, low end, in the middle. The trick is going to be finding a good 7 or 8 speed brifter, if that is the cassette you chose.

If you go with 3 chainrings, might have to look to get the correct front brifter.

If you go with a double chain ring, get 16 tooth difference between the rings (max. modern derailers can handle.) Get a close spaced cassette, like 1 or 2 teeth difference between the sprockets. When riding stay on the big ring (except for big uphills of course) and shift the rear to find the right gear. When stopping shift to the small ring so you are in a low enough gear to get started again.

You want a hyperglide cassette (or whatever SRAM and campy call their ramped designs) and ramped/pinned chain rings. You want a free hub not a freewheel.

You want the small sprockets on the cassette close together (1 tooth difference) but it is OK to have 2 teeth difference between the bigger sprockets. May a 3 or 4 tooth difference to the biggest sprocket, to give you a bail out gear. Any Shimano compatible rear deariluer made in the last 20 years will take a 28 tooth sprocket, despite what the specs may say. Maybe as big a 30 teeth, depending on the hanger geometry. Try to get a cassette with individual sprockets and spacers, not the ones stuck together on a spider. This way you can replace the sprockets that wear out fastest without having to replace the entire cassette.

If you are always only going to be on pavement you want pure slick tires, no tread at all. Even in the rain. Unless you weigh less than 120 lbs you don't want 23 mm tires. Consider a wider tire in back, like maybe 28 mm with a 25 mm in front. But make sure you spare inner tube you carry will fit in both sized tires.

Those new Brooks Cambium saddles look good and apparently Mr. Snob likes his.

wishiwasmerckx said...

All this actual bike talk on a bike forum makes me want to hurl.

Back to fart jokes, please.

Fred of the Sea said...

wiwm, you're right. Apologies to all.

Comment deleted said...

I'm following this discussion with interest, as I contemplate building a dependable commuter that won't attract much attention (i.e., in the form of bolt cutters).

Flyover BC said...

I recently up/down graded my seven speed to triple chain ring and brifters.

It's only an improvement on the uphills, whereas the brakes seem to be less effective than when the levers were brakes only.

The rub is that I wanted the triple because the hills here are endless and/steep, but you need the good breaks for the downhill so you don't brake anything.

Anonymous said...

“Back to fart jokes, please.”

“Expense is not a major consideration”

If expensive is not major, get the highest quality farts you can, especially for the bottom scranus. Sealed farts for the bottom scranus and wheel tits will save you having to re-pack them very year or two. Everyone talks about a Chris King headset, and a good quality farts in the headset will last longer, but drag in the bottom scranus and wheel tit farts will make you work harder. When choosing between 2 pedal that are equally comfortable, spin them both at the same time and get the one that takes the longest to stop; it has the better farts.

Anonymous said...

Aqua Fred,

Did you mention it was an 80's frame as an aside or because you wanna put together something true to the period?

I've still got me my first serious bikes which I built up from a frame set in the mid-eighties. All original components still on the thing -- 531 tubes, Cinelli lugs and BB shell, all that groovy arabesque Shimano 600 running gear... I spontaneously ejaculate describing it, so I'll stop now, but I will mention it has downtube shifters rather than brifters, loose ball BB rather than sealed cartridge, cluster rather than cassette etc.

With only three specialist tools: chain breaker, crank puller and that thing to remove the cluster, I can (and have, multiple times) completely stripped and reassembled it.

In three decades it hasn't clocked up millions in mileage, but it gets out at least once a month and the only failure has been a cracked seat post.

So get yourself second hand gear and slap it together like that.

And no! No fart jokes! This is un chartered territory for this blog; who knows what may be discovered if we follow this path...

Spokey said...

anon @ 5:58 PM

I'm using a cambium and like it a lot. Yesterday took out the old Cannondale which has a B17 on it.

My butt reports that they are pretty close. Got the cambium because I left a different B17 out in the rain all night and it was never the same. Even after letting it dry naturally for a few weeks and cranking the adjusting bolt a few turns, i couldn't get rid of the sag. So I decided to spring the extra $ for the next time my mental illness leaves the bike out all night in the rain again. I might try drilling holes and lacing that one for a winter project.

I got the darker Cambium figuring it would hide dirt better than the one snobbie got. A bit of the dye has come off but it's still darker and I think I like the color better. Same dimensions as snobbie's (unless he has the C17s).

I got mine from http://www.wallbike.com/ they offer a six month full refund satisfaction guarantee.

dop said...

ok 1) what does, 'pinned mean'

2) how are you supposed to dismount to avoid hurting the BB
3) I don't agree with snob that the Saturday Deluxe looks, 'precious'...if he thinks so, he should take the reflectors out of the spokes

long live the apostrophe

Fred of the Sea said...

Anon @ 1905 hrs, thank you. Yes, I intentionally mentioned the vintage of the frame, because I don't think it makes economical or esthetic sense to put, for example, a carbon group on it. I also mentioned that I am a retro-geezer myself. However, I am planning to change out the Nuovo Record stuff which, while pretty and redolent of lost youth and fredly glory, doesn't work as well as the down-market stuff on my commuters.

I'm working on the fart thing.

Pod said...

Dop 7:50 PM,

Death to Uncapitalised Posts.

Anonymous said...

what does, 'pinned mean'

Short pins mounted on and perpendicular to the face of the big chain ring, towards the small ring. When shifting to the big ring the pin catches the chain and lifts it.

See "Pins & Ramps" here:
http://sheldonbrown.com/gloss_p.html#pins

See "Ramped and Pinned" on this page:
http://sheldonbrown.com/gloss_ra-e.html

Anon @ 1905 hrs said...

Aqua Fred said,

"doesn't work as well as the down-market stuff on my commuters."

Well, now you've confused and (truth be told) upset me a little.

If you replace your wholesome vintage components with whizz-bang, laser, 3D, digital gear on your 80's frame, aren't you just building a brand new bike using a quirky frame?

I believe as we drink the water we should honour those who dug the well -- therefore, I suggest you relegate your un-updated retro bike to curio status (hang it on a wall or bring it out for tweed rides only) and build yourself a new road bike using whatever frame and components take your fancy.

Yes, it would be yet another bike, but I note you said "commuters" - plural, so what's another roadie for a Fred as profligate as you?

Fred of the Sea said...

Ah, Anon, you cut to the heart of the matter and my own ambivalence, but no: I believe there is a functional middle ground between whizzbang and wall art.

Moreover, regarding your trenchant, "those who dug the well" comment, it is the very builder of the frame, who, being an old personal friend, has no particular economic stake in the matter, is pushing me in the direction of Gucci components and 18-spoke wheels. To him it's just a bike.

semi serious cyclist said...

ONE question - what should i do with my vintage bike? and the Fredliness of these comments WENT THROUGH THE ROOF. It was as if everyone started channeling the great Zinn into a muddle of vintage redux. Jumped in and starting speaking in tech tongues.

I say:

friction downtube. anything that fits. less is more.

Unparalleled Fredliness Syzygy. Congrats to whoever initially fed the fred.

Spokey said...

I'd feel cheated if I only got 18 spokes per wheel. probably radial lace to boot.

I don't have a wheel with less than double that unless it's the crit bike my brother gave me a couple months ago and won't take back.

I guess if you're a racer and don't mind new wheels or at least truing them all the time, that might make sense. The americano has had a lot of hard miles now and the wheels well into the second decade have never been trued. If I look really really close I think I can see just a hair of wobble although that's the front. I can't see anything in the rear with a 145 hub and a 48 spoke 4x lace.

Maybe I'm lucky but I've never been fredly and thus always went for the solid stuff. Other than the americano's BB which may be ready for version 3 (stupid ISIS BB), the stuff doesn't need much fixing. I do put a new chain on every year and I change the rear cluster every few years. For some reason I both think and want to not replace the rings and figure that helps them live longer. Probably doesn't make sense but we all have our foibles.

Anonymous said...

",,,the Fredliness of these comments WENT THROUGH THE ROOF....and starting speaking in tech tongues.

So what exactly is Fred about the above comments? No one is talking about adding speed or losing weight, or the latest components and space age materials. People are talking about durability, availability, ease of maintenance. What is fred about that? And the most Tech talk above is how many sprockets you can fit in a vintage frame.

Anon @ 1905 hrs said...



Aqua Fred,

It's really and truly not my prerogative to question the authenticity of your friendship with the frame builder, but I will anyway...

Might he be encouraging you to bling up HIS frame to draw attention to his handiwork? A sorta ambush marketing thing?

babble on said...

DoP - re: spoke reflectors...good point. Clearly he is a substance over style kindov guy.

Er... snobberdoodums? Sorry, but really? How can you mock people for pie plates, with your own reflectors still sitting pretty in those spokes? Hmmmm? Holy Roller is going to have something to say about that.

commentatorbot_038413 said...

Fred of the Sea,

Leave the 1980's chariot intact. The triple likely will not work out if we are talking about the average 80's road-racing type biek. In that era, triples were used on "touring bikes" only. And I mean ONLY. The stays won't be set right at the bottom bracket to work out good chain lines.

Buy used. Yes, some patience is required for some sizes, but there are so many spurned Cat 6 glory seekers that there's a steady supply of recent vintage, low hours equipment at very, very low prices.

The other way to go that's good is buy Scatantte or the other half-dozen retailer branded bikes. Bikes have improved in the sense there's a bigger variety of designs out there including lightweight bieks with triples.

These days I ride a cyclocross bike and have one set of wheels for dirt, another for road. I run a 38/46 or something like that. Plenty of low gear with a 32 on back in the dirt. I'm not going back to having a road-only biek. It wastes time and money.

The next trend in cycling is l'eroica rides. Your 80's chariot will be HIGHLY prized.

commentatorbot_0384 said...

semi serious cyclist,

You've got two choices with a bike you don't want.

1. forget about it in the shed.
2. sell it

I prefer the latter. You won't miss it.

Fred of the sea,
Trying to use modern gruppos on old frames just doesn't work. The notches in the click-shifting most likely won't work out right.

It's like putting an old porsche engine in an old VW beetle.
Sure, you can do it, but what a pain and it will always be a little fiddly.

Fred of the Sea said...

Comments all appreciated. I'm not considering a triple crank. Notches in the click shifting? What does that have to do with the frame?

As for the builder, he's still producing substantially similar frames and putting modern kit on them. However, I don't have access to the darker reaches of his commercial soul. Simply having me on the bike is a pretty serious negative advertisement.

Anonymous said...

"Trying to use modern gruppos on old frames just doesn't work. The notches in the click-shifting most likely won't work out right."

Here is a thread with 1463 posts about restoring old road bikes:

http://www.bikeforums.net/classic-vintage/762624-new-classic-rigs-rides-thread-1-1-a.html

More than half have modern components, maybe 25% have brifters.

And here is what Saint Sheldon says about the wisdom of upgrading old frames with modern components:

http://sheldonbrown.com/upgrade.html

Anonymous said...

93

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194

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195

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dancesonpedals said...

while the city sleeps

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