Disconnect in 12

A few moments on the beach before traveling back to Seattle

A popular, year-end NYT editorial by Pico Iyer is about stillness, quiet, and clearing the head. 

 In barely one generation we’ve moved from exulting in the time-saving devices that have so expanded our lives to trying to get away from them — often in order to make more time. The more ways we have to connect, the more many of us seem desperate to unplug. Like teenagers, we appear to have gone from knowing nothing about the world to knowing too much all but overnight.

That’s what cyclists do on their rides. I find the most clarity when I’m only thinking of how best to negotiate a turn or cross a barrier most efficiently. Like that song says, “who needs to think when your feet just go.” Especially, when your feet are turning pedals. 

My New Year’s wish is that more people can disconnect in 12. That they’ll get out of the cars and get healthy in their heads. Bodies too. 

The road ahead

Fav Bike Shops

We visit local shops when traveling to top off the air in the tires, buy a few items, and talk shop. I like to hear what’s happening in town, what’s selling or not, and meet the clientele. Shops maybe a local roadie hangout for urban commuters, or even an artist’s collective like the Asphalt Store in Poland. That shop is on the list to visit, cause like 14 Bike Co, they’re

Interested in forming new collaborations with international artists and encouraging them to create new work in their space.

Asphalt worked with London-based illustrator Ryan Todd on these shop window light boxes.

Photos by Michał Zachwieja

The 3 shops in Maui are there for the locals, tourists, rentals, tours and selling cruisers.

West Maui Cycles, South Maui, or the Maui Cyclery may not focus on fashion or fixed-gear trends, but all of them have routes to recommend, assorted stories, and the use of a pump.

One of my favorite and most memorable shop visits was at the Freitag store in Berlin. It’s not an actual bike shop, but where I got a free fixed-gear to ride and talked to Martin, who was working there that day. We discussed art, culture, Obey, urban, and everything else until a rush of customers came in.

Obey

Another conversation(s) I had in a shop, that made it into the presentations I did in 2010, was at WorkCycles with Henry and Marc from Amsterdamized

The most favorite shop is when we’re at home in Seattle. That’s Elliot Bay Bicycles and where they make our Davidsons.

Courses

courses

Developers saw a plantation turned into a golf course and riding by I saw an amazing Cross course with natural barriers, run-ups, and technical sections in the Cook Pines.

wind break

Davidsons in the Corner

Travel bikes

The Davidsons, our travel bikes, occupy this corner of the vacation condo when we’re not riding them. Nothing stylized or lighted here in the photo, just work-a-day bikes that we’ve spent over 20 hours on so far.

We’ve got another long ride today towards Hana on roads like this. Then back to Seattle and the new year.

An Upcountry Road

Just Riding Along: Pedal Fell Off

time pedal

Pedal broke

Should’ve realized that the creaking noise was from the Time RX-S pedals and not the bottom bracket or Paragon slider bolts. I’ve seen pedal axles unthread from a crank, FSA’s crank issues, chains break, spokes, and other mechanicals. This the first time in two decades of riding that a pedal fell off. On a climb. In Maui.

Besides bumming me out during vacation, I remembered that I forgot about the recall. I’ve got dozens of bikes, boxes of gear, and just grabbed a pair of pedals for the travel bike. The other Time pedals in the Hugga HQ garage have the “fixed” dot on them. This pair did not.

The bearing lock collar would not stay tight on the pedal body. Normal use would cause the bearing collar to unthread from the pedal body and, once it unthreaded all the way, the pedal body came off the axle. The solution in manufacturing was to use locking compound on the bearing collar. We then had to recall as many pedals as possible worldwide and use the same locking compound. You might check to see if your pedals have either a red, silver or gold dot on the bottom of the pedal body somewhere as that would indicate that they had the locking compound installed as some point.

In other words, from an insider’s view that talked to me about the pedals, “A total fuster clucking mess.” Lucky no one got killed or severely injured from these French-f’d up pedals, including me.

I wasn’t sprinting, cresting a steep climb, or flying into the apex of a curvy road corner like this one.

curvy

On a road like this

Just riding along, up a coastal roller, and suddenly my foot broke free. It was just hanging there with a pedal attached to a shoe. I looked down, saw the bare axle, and slowed to a stop. After carefully stepping down, I then checked the other bearing lock collar and yep it was loose as well. I hand tightened both of them and we rode to Kihei and the South Maui Bike Shop. The mechanic used a universal pipe wrench to tighten the collar, cause he didn’t have the right tool and I suddenly realized that Time pedals were hard to find in shops.

Great.

A Tecate tall boy and can of Pringles later, I mellowed out, laid on the beach, and found the recall notice from 06 on the web.

There are a couple days left on this vacation, so I’m not going to go into standards in the industry, safety, and the risks we take riding bikes. I’ll also try to not wonder how fatigued the Ritchey WCS 4 Axis stem I have on that bike is.

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