Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Happy Odin's Day!

Further to yesterday's post, a reader pointed out:

Regular guy said...

That Visp tri-spoke bike looks like something that Michael Ball had in mind when he was in that pissing match with Steve Hed (may he rest in peace)

February 24, 2015 at 7:56 PM

This is an excellent point.  Here's the Accrue bologna slicer as specced on the Visp Machete:


And here is Michael Ball's original design for the Rock Racing wheelset:


By the way, if you're new-ish to cycling and are unfamiliar with Michael Ball, this picture is all you need to know:


(Rock Racing was built on a foundation of doping products, hair styling products, and the constant flashing of "doucheclamation points.")

After revisiting this sordid era I found myself wondering what happened to the erstwhile "King of Pants," so I attempted to track him down using a popular search engine, but the trail goes cold in 2011:

The former chief executive of edgy-apparel maker Rock and Republic Enterprises Inc., which entered Chapter 11 in 2010 and sold its intellectual property earlier in March, is ready to change gears after a tough but transformative introduction to the new decade. In an interview Tuesday, he said that he has a new venture in the works, and while he wouldn’t share any details, he did reveal one thing: It has nothing to do with high-end denim or with anything in the apparel realm, for that matter.

After that, nothing.

(I el-oh-elled at "intellectual property," by the way.)

Oh, well, at least I'll always have his autograph:


Actually, that's not true.  Foolishly, I gave the hat to a certain ex-pro, and he's probably sold it off by now to help pay for that fender-bender in Aspen.

Wow, those were heady days back in 2008.  Fixies, Rock Racing, a pre-comeback Armstrong still neck-deep in movie star ass...  Even this blog was still funny.

In retrospect, it was sort of a golden age.

I suppose after Sheldon Brown died so did our innocence.

Anyway, speaking of the Machete, the one in the red "colorway" is garnering some kick-ass reviews:


Check this one out for example:


Made with Dragonsblood!

By bryan wierzchucki on February 23, 2015

Upon receiving this beast of a bike I immediately went and signed up for a STRAVA account. Next I searched all the local KOMs and decided to go hunting. On my first ride I stole 188 KOMs and got a speeding ticket from the local police department. The ticket is framed and hanging in my garage as a momento of the awesomeness that is the Machete. My second ride was even better, I decided to go race a local criterium. From the first whistle I left the field in my rear view mirror I have mounted on my helmet(safety first). With in 2 laps I had lapped the field. In the process I won 2 primes that consisted of a bag of coffee and an Ontario Series T-Shirt. With the field starring in awe at the awesomeness of my bike I decided that lapping the field once wasn't good enough and did it again. After I won the race, the podium picture had just me on the top step, all the other racers felt unworthy to be in the presence of such an amazing marvel of engineering. After the race one of the podium girls came up to me and offered herself as a reward, which I gladly accepted. I used the $63 first place winnings and took her to dinner, reservations for three of course (me, her, and the Machete). The future seems bright and the possibilities are endless with this bike in your arsenal!

I totally want a Machete in my arsenal.

Another interesting feature of this particular Machete is the crank:


Wow, how did that happen?

Someone is so going to get sued.

Speaking of inexpensive alternatives, now that all the real cities are for billionaires the media's always on the hunt for the next affordable millennial hotspot where it's possible to live some facsimile of the American lifestyle despite stagnant wages and crippling student loan debt.  First it was Detroit, then it was Des Moines, and now it seems like I keep reading stories about Buffalo.  For example, did you know you can go there and ride a locally-made ice bike inspired by Chinese recumbents?


Canalside visitors, who’ve come from as far away as Switzerland and Japan, can also rent what are believed to be the country’s first ice bikes, inspired by recumbent Chinese machines and made locally with blades instead of front wheels.

I'm not sure how that was inspired by a recumbent, but either way I'm impressed.  In fact, I'd be up there faster than you can say "Finger Lakes" if only Buffalo wasn't in Canada.

In other recumbent news, one recumbent rider has invented the "World's First Highway Speed Bike," which is in no way a bike:



The video begins with what purports to be film footage of the inventor as a child:


Check this badass kid out.  He's got the red pants, the shades, and even the Raleigh Chopper bike, which your humble blogger coveted back in those days.  So what I'd like to know is how did a kid so cool ultimately morph into this?


We may never know what set him on the horizontal path to recumbent-dom, but what we do know is that he likes bike rides but he doesn't like bike commutes:

If someone says to you, "Hey, how 'bout going on a bike ride?," what comes to mind?  Pure enjoyment and pure fun!

On the other hand, if someone says to you, "Hey, how 'bout a bike commute?," then what comes to mind?  Right, not so much fun anymore:


I'm not sure he's got that right.  See, bike commuting doesn't suck because of the weather.  Bike commuting sucks because you have to go to work.  Plus, if this guy thinks a bike ride automatically equals "pure enjoyment and pure fun" then he's never ridden with roadies.  "Pure enjoyment and pure fun?"  Try "over-torqued sphincters and masturbatory Strava obsession."

Anyway, his answer to the woes of bike commuting isn't "quit your job and move to Buffalo."  Instead, it's this thing:


Okay, I get that it doesn't use gas and all, but where are you supposed to park it?

He doesn't say.

He does, however, introduce Scott Olson, the guy who invented Rollerblades:


I was flabbergasted to learn that the inventor of Rollerblades shows his face publicly, because I just assumed someone responsible for such an abomination would have gone into hiding, like Salman Rushdie after the fatwā.

All this aside, the Raht Racer looks like what would happen if a motorcycle and a 1940s hot rod were to give birth to a suppository:


And it's even got airbags!


Though, to be fair, so do bicycle helments:


So safe, so fashionable, so Bergmanesque...

And finally, the inventor concludes his presentation by pointing to a guitar player's crotch:


So there you go, the future of human transport.

Lastly, people like to say that "cycling is the new golf," but who do the two really have to be mutually exclusive now that there's the Golf Bike?


OH MY GOD SHE'S NOT WEARING A HEALMENT SHE'S GOING TO DIE!!!


Anyway, if cycling is the new golf then I suppose that makes Portland the new restricted country club.

Fuck it, I'm leasing a Raht Racer.

75 comments:

Anonymous said...

bamcis

samh said...

AYHSMB

groanhammer said...

Gurgle McSplurgle

Anonymous said...

PODIUM!

james said...

missed

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Blogger said...

On March 23rd, Blogger will no longer allow certain sexually explicit content. Learn more here.

samh said...

Rest in peace, Sheldon.

wishiwasmerckx said...

Toppus Tennus.

bannedforlife said...

TOP TEN!!

crosspalms said...

"The lawn is my healment"
-- Golf woman

balls™ said...

All you haters suck my golf balls.

ken e. said...

when nerds attack!

Tom Morley said...

Yes, rest in peace, Sheldon.

RoadQueen said...

Late

Pathetic Old Cyclist said...

Feefteenth

Jed said...

Kudos!

Elon Musk said...

"... which is in no way a bike..."

Damn straight it is not a bike. It has a 26 HP electric motor and a throttle. The pedals are just along for the ride.

P. Bateman said...

dang. back on the correct coast but my clock is screwed up causing me to miss the top 10. i'm gonna go dope up so i'm in better shape for tomorrow. maybe a suppository would help.

P. Bateman said...

so, basically i could put a treadmill in an F250 and claim that runners can now commute to work with the power of their own feet and still have 860lb ft of stump pulling torque?

dang, that is a LOT of torque.

the rat mobil does look like a bit of fun though if i am honest.

Marcel Da Chump said...

I'm all fore that golf bike.

Anonymous said...

Ditto with the rest in peace Sheldon. He was a God! He descended from heaven to give us all basic and arcane bicycle knowledge. All hail Sheldon!

cycle

bieks said...

Now, if they marketed the Rat as a low cost alternative to a Tesla, then meh-be I'd be interested. It is cheaper than a Tesla I hope.

BamaPhred said...

Any BSNYC blogulation with a suppository reference defaults to funny status.
Instead of machete I still would name that VISP the SqrrlSlcer.

dnk said...

Speaking of this blog being still funny, yesterday I heard a story about the businessman behind Priority Bicycles on the Marketplace public radio show:
http://www.marketplace.org/topics/business/priority-bicycles-quest-build-better-bike

Of course I then looked Snob's post on Priority --- "Woody Allen invents a bike" --- and was laughing my ass off.

http://bikesnobnyc.blogspot.com/2014/07/ready-setread.html

So, still funny.

Vernal Magina said...

Man, the picture of that guy straddling the recumbent is absolutely disgusting.

... btw, since when does Philip Glass sell Ikea inflatable headware?

Anonymous said...

I'm going to buy a golf bike and use it for baguette delivery and dildo portaging.

grog said...

"Wow, how did that happen".
I so el-oh-elled.

Comment deleted said...

Anything to avoid actually walking 18 holes...

Anonymous said...

The Visp Machete is basically the Scion of bikes.

Anonymous said...

If golf clubs allowed fat bikes instead of forcing duffers into golf carts, I would enjoy playing the game.

On second thought, nah.

Jack said...

clearly he ended up riding recumbents because he was hoping for a meet-up and maybe even a hook-up with recumbabe! thats why I yearn for one.

Bryan said...

The rhat racer reminded me of the P 45 on Top Gear except without the drawback of a minimum petrol purchase that was too much for the tank.

leroy said...

My dog says he has no opinion on whether this blog was funnier in 2008, but insists my comments back then were dull without his pithy and much sought-after insights.

I think he's over-estimated his Twitter fame. He has more fleas than followers.

crosspalms said...

That VISP seat tube looks like a snake that swallowed a guinea pig.

Regular guy said...

Scott Olson, otherwise known as the guy who foisted the rollerblade upon the land, does more than show his face in public, he flaunts it.

I had the pleasure of riding his original prototype rowbike many years ago, when I worked for a certain wheel maker mentioned earlier. I am surprised it has taken so long to catch on.

By the way, the stone bridge featured in the Rowbike website is the same one this guy is resting on, proving it's not always miserably cold here right in the crotch of Canada's tighty whiteys.

1904 Cadardi said...

@dnk,

I heard that MarketPlace interview with Woody "Priority Bikes" Allen as well. I had forgotten about WildCat's insightful piece way back in July. Thanks for reminding me. Mr. Snob, thanks for writing it. After hearing the interview, you were prescient and quite humorous.

1904 Cadardi said...

Is it possible to order the VISP Switzerland Ultimate Sport wheels seperately?

The combination of aerodynamic deep dish rims with the durability of 32 spokes seems like the perfect combination. Plus dick breaks!

JB said...

I wonder what McFly's thinking about that nice golf lady.

Anonymous said...

I'm gonna say it: I think the Raht racer is cool. However, I'm not so sure it's safer than a motorcycle.

Also, if you ride (pilot?) a Raht racer, you do not have to share the road. Dude said so. That means all cars have to get off the road when you are piloting your Raht racer!

Paul said...

http://youtu.be/6z9Cg46Nktw?t=3m32s

Ryan Kelley said...

I live in a bike shop.

People always ask: "Are you a road biker or a mountain biker?"

"I am a commuter. I do road rides and mountain rides sometimes. Mostly, I ride to the grocery store, the coffee shop, networking events and miscellaneous errands."

Commuting is my favorite style of riding because it is efficient.

I think you are right, Bike Snob, the only people who don't like commuting riding are the ones that ride to their jobs that they don't like.

PotbellyJoe said...

All you ever need to know about RR was not Michael Ball, but that Michael Ball hired face-tattoo David Clinger to be on the team.

I was shocked when a guy who went from USPS, to Festina and then to RR and in the process had his face tattooed, tested for drugs.

This is my shocked face:

**Not Shocked**

Billy said...

Some days I want a velomobile, but then I start to wonder where I would keep it, work on it, park it at work, etc. etc. It seems like just as much of a PITA as a car, but without the comfy seat and engine.

How do you go past a multi-mile traffic jam in one of those?

Meh.

Freddie Fredrickson said...

Snob. Another epic post today. Where do you find the energy?

My guess is crank.

Freddie Fredrickson said...

Guess #2 ...

Frosted Banana Berry Pepe Escobar High Protein Coke Smoothies?

Beavis Cleaver said...

Fred Triangle Centre is Moab, Slick Rock ...

In geometry, a triangle center (or triangle centre) is a point in the plane that is in some sense a center of a triangle akin to the centers of squares and circles. For example the centroid, circumcenter, incenter and orthocenter were familiar to the ancient Greeks, and can be obtained by simple constructions.

Regular guy said...

I think that Visp review by "Bryan Wierzchucki" sounds an awful lot like something Michael Ball would write.

I can't imagine any normal person writing that review.

I think if we were to connect some dots here, we'll find out what Mr. "King of Pants" has been up to for the past 3-4 years.

Drock said...

Bio pace fixed gear, people laugh, people say it don't work, I say sheldon did it, so why not, oblong away.

Dave said...

I commuted by bike to various boring jobs for many years; it was always the best part of the day, coming and going. Had I driven instead, by now I'd be a psychotic, obese corpse. Instead of the semi-retired demigod I manifestly am.

Anonymous said...

Look out for your lobster claws if you fall in front a a speeding icebike. If will be slow and painful de-clawing.

Anonymous said...

Wasn't there an urban legend that the rollerblade was invented by an woman back in the 1950s but when she went to the patent office they laughed at her because and wouldn't let her patent it?
Does anybody know if that's true or just feminist legend?

Anonymous said...

Lapping the field to a a crit racer is analogous to cumming twice in a row to a 40 year old bike commuter who brags how much they like it.

BamaPhred said...

So what do these no visible means of support douchebags like Michael Ball do, after having all their assets seized in bankruptcy? I don't see any of them living in a cardboard box.

Ric said...

That Rhat Racer is essentially an electric car with a recumbent exercise bike option. I was curious about how much contribution pedalling would give, so lets run some numbers for a rough estimate.

First, we need to decide on a reasonable sustainable power output for a cyclist. This article on Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bicycle_performance) claims that a 90kg bike + rider requires 175 watts to travel at 20mph on a flat surface. So let's assume our Rhat pilot is in good physical condition and can generate 175 watts over a long interval.

Now, the Rhat has a 9200 watt hour battery and a range of 50 miles. Unfortunately, they don't specify the average speed for that range. So. let's make a big assumption of a 25 mph average speed. Therefore, it will take 2 hours to travel 50 miles, so the Raht will consume 4600 watt hours of power in that one hour. Our pilot will generate 175 watts over that same hour. So, 175/(4600-175) = 3.9%

Our pilot is generating only about 4% of the power, which isn't very much at all.

I really don't like the 25 mph assumption I made above, so let see if we can calculate this a different way. The Raht uses 9200 watt hours to travel 50 miles. That gives a value of 184 watt hours per mile. In comparison, the Nissan Leaf ( a much heavier vehicle) requires 328 watt hours per mile. Our 90kg cyclist generates 175 watts to travel 20 miles in a hour, which works out to 8.75 watt hours per mile.

Now, if we assume 8.75 watt hours per mile of that 184 watt hours per mile are being provided by the pilot, we can calculate the percentage as 8.75/(184-8.75) = 4.99%, which comes really close to out first result.

So, it seems a fit cyclist would provide about 4 to 5 percent of the power for the Raht.

dop said...

WCRM's use of the term, "doucheclamation point", leads me to think that he shares my love for the website, hotchickswithdouchebags

Regular guy said...

Bama, they all are intertwined in co-dependent douchbaggery, so they're never without SOME form of support. They keep each other afloat like turds in a toilet bowl.

BamaPhred said...

I like a Regular Guy's observation. Corporate management tends to resemble a septic tank, the big chunks rise to the top. So why not with bankrupt ceo's.

BamaPhred said...

Anyway, golph biek babe makes me wonder what lies beyond the hem of that skirt. I think imagonnahaftafireUma, an hook up with the un so unobtainable GBB.

Mikey said...

The sun came out today and I was able to burn up 9 ants with a magnifying glass before I had to come in for dinner, then I rode my bike to Tommy's house.

Anonymous said...

http://i.imgur.com/n7t6nki.gifv

McFly said...

That Beautiful Golf Godzilla inflated my Hovding in about 2.3 seconds.

That red VISP machete looks like a rolling dog dick.

Freddy Murcks said...

All You Balls Suck My Hater.

Anonymous said...

Curse you! You had to have a link to the Amazon page! Now every time I go to check the weather dot com I am inundated with pictures of that Visp monstrosity!

Anonymous said...

Frilly Chick yesterday, Road Queen today. WTF!

McFly said...

Does that Portable Ball Washer also mind polishing the shank of my 3 wood that I enjoy using on the Back 9 for a possible Hole in One?

(I can't squeeze any more metaphors in that sentence....it's too early)

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure the kid in the beginning of the RAHT video was Roy Orbison.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

The problem with any velomobile is keeping the windows from fogging/frosting in cool/cold/moist weather conditions without a heater core and fan to blow warm dry air into the passenger cabin.

In my opinion its just easier to ride the ole upright 2-wheeler for commutes. I do like the Ratt mobile though.

babble on said...

My girls!! Yay! Welcome back, beauties. Frilly yesterday? Heh heh... :D +++

Road Queen... welcome back to winter, doll. You were missed. xo xo

BamaPhred said...

Golf Babe and not ONE Caddyshack reference, yet. So on comment #69, I give you Carl Spackler:
"Oh, Mrs. Crane, I'm looking at you... You wore green so you could hide. I don't blame you - you're a tramp! Ooh! That was right where you wanted it! Ooh Mrs. Crane, you're a little monkey woman you know that? You're a little monkey woman... You're lean and you're mean and you're not too far between either I bet, are ya? Would you like to wrap your spikes around my head?"

Anonymous said...

Brooks is proud to announce our newest tribute line the Jeffery Dahmer Human Genome Leather power seat. Available in 19 tone shades. Tastily appointed and reasonably priced.

dop said...

Mikey-

You're ready to hit a roll of caps with a hammer

Anonymous said...

My scranus has a first name

Yeah Cleveland! said...

Since we're talking Caddyshack we have to mention how the actress who played the hot Irish chick wasn't really Irish, was also the underage chick in Animal House and went crazy. And I'm sure that means something.

herzogone said...

A day late on this one, but here's Michael Ball's LinkedIn page. Apparently, he's since been hucking energy drinks.

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