Single Speed By Necessity

Apparently, other people have heard about this race called Starcrossed Cyclocross. A couple years ago I raced my MTB with dropbars, suspension fork and all. This year I had a fully functional CX bike, but all the spots in mens cat4 were booked up by the time I got my act together to register. So I had to register for the single speed category. I converted my bike to single speed with the least amount of effort. I borrowed a bar and levers, swiped a stem off my track bike, and fished out my prized pre-indexed era DA rear derailleur. I stripped the shifter’ed bar and front derailleur off, and set it up again. Any rear derailleur can be rigged into a single speed chain tensioner by using a short stub of shifter or even brake cable with the end still on…I can even use the barrel adjuster to dial it up or down one cog.

After toiling to make Byron’s SSCX Raliegh frameset into an ubercool rig, my bike looks rather slapdash, but I’m rather pleased. However, a guy at the line had outdone me. He had SRAM Force and basically just removed the shift cables. One the officials seemed to have some difficulty comprehending how that could be a single speed but was eventually convinced. single speed by necessity.jpg

Hodala Single Speeds!

Hodala is a Taiwanese toast that means, “To the bottom” and a good analogy for drinking beer and racing your bike. A bike that your throw up on your back, run with, and destroy in the mud. The cheer is also the name of a “ragtag, fugitive fleet, on a lonely quest–for a shining planet–wait that’s the intro to Battlestar Galactica … Still applicable though to Single Speeders who, as a niche of a niche, are a dedicated, rebellious group riding bikes like the Raleigh High Life and led by Raleighs Sally, the marketing manager for Raleigh.

hodala_tat.jpg Raleigh Bicycles is the sponsor of the Single Speed World Championships and make these limited edition bikes for SSXCWC. They sell them and use the proceeds to further their mission. This year with the Worlds here in Seattle, we’re blogging and racing it. A couple weeks ago, at the MFG Cyclocross party, Brian (aka Raleighs Sally) and I got to talking smack about single speeds, asked if I was racing, and I said something like, “Yep will put a bike together, got a bike from last year, come up with something.”

We weren’t at a mall, he wasn’t in a Santa suit, and I wasn’t sitting on his lap giving him a Xmas list, but a week later, I get a text that a frame is ready. “What?” He must’ve pulled this one from his personal stash, cause they only make about 50 a year.

“coming to get it and can I have a pony too?”

Yesterday, I handed Mark V the High Life frame and the Tricross Specialized got us last year. Like a Freakbike Apothecary with a mortar and pestle mashing a frame with bike and parts from his stash, he made this

Style Derby with MPLS Minx

A flourish move from MPLS Minx at the Grain Belt Studios for MN Fashion Week. ‘Bout this time last year, also posted on MPLS Minx and her ability to ride in 5-inch heels with seamed stockings.

Uploaded by epmd | more from the Bike Hugger Photostream.

Ignite Bikes: Bike-Riding Influencers

Sandwiched between the Ready to Ride Fashion Show and the Mobile Social, like a sweet and salty blend of PB&J, is Ignite Bikes. That’s a set of inspired talks from bike-riding influencers like

and more. Join us at 4:30 on Thursday and check back for venue and final speaker roster. We promise a good show and perfect prelude to Riding the Strip.

Fixie Hipsters

Slide from my Guide to Bike Culture preso.

Mobile Social London 2010

The week after Interbike, we’re back in London for another Mobile Social. This one is hosted by Mission Workshop and sponsored by Dahon.


Artwork: Kevin Tamura

  • When: September 28, 2010, 6-8 PM
  • Where: London, UK
  • Who: Locals, Bike Huggers
  • Directions: Ride from and Reception at Mission Workshop
  • RSVP now at Upcoming or Facebook
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