Relics: Our First Race Bikes



An unexpected find at a shop, led to an Instagram photo shared on Facebook and comments about my first bike. A possible future side project too: a museum of cyclo-computers.

  • Martin Gisborne – First road bike: a blue Raleigh Arena which I always thought was a poor imitation of the Carlton Continental my brother had once had (and all the cool kids had moved on to the Raleigh Europa. Second road bike: a Peugeot which I loved. I rode thousands of miles on while training for short track. Had it stolen from right outside of a nurses room in the nurses quarters at the local hospital. She was kindly patching up the blood pouring out of my knee after I’d fallen off at the end of a ride. Third road bike: a Dave Marsh, handmade, 753 tubing beauty. Outfitted with Campag components. Mr Marsh himself drove down to Nottingham, from Rotherham, with the bike in the trunk of his car. I remember him taking it out, putting it together and adjusting the bars/saddle to fit. I remember clipping into the Look pedals and listening to the brand new, hand made wheels, go b-r-r-r-r-r-r-ing as the spokes settled in for the first 10 yards..

  • Byron – My first road “race” bike was a Specialized Bicycles Epic Allez, the alumimum-lugged, carbon tubed whip machine with a Vetta computer on it..

  • Brian Snyder – First race bike was a brand new teal and white 1987 Schwinn tempo. Of course I plopped an avocet 20 computer on that beast. Who knows where either of those are now.

  • Marc Pagani – First road bike: Ross Eurosport. Second road bike (and the one I got into long distance touring with): Fuji. First race bike: i custom built a Peugeot Reynolds 531 frame up with Shimano 600EX and Matrix ISO rims, and Clement Criterium Seta tubulars. Went from that to a couple of aluminum Felt’s that I built up with Campagnolo Chorus, and I’m now on my Orbea Orca with Campy Super Record Record 11 with lots of Deda and Edge 1.45 wheels.

  • Mark V – First road bike: Specialized Allez lugged steel. 2nd was Colnago Bi-Titan; it was a piece of shit. Bought the Allez back and used as a work bike for years. 3rd bike was a Bianchi El/OS; a bike that was just so right. Sold it to an ex-gf. Bought it back, still have it 16 yrs since I first rode it.

And Matthew Cole noted, “I love how the color coding indicates you’re in “The DANGER ZONE!!!!” if you’re riding 20+ mph.”

epic allez

Epic Allez

Your first race bike? I still see Allez’s on the road and locked in bike racks.

From the Bike Shop: Devo & the Smart Patrol

Devo on iPod

Now that Seattle Bike Expo is over, I can get back to being the audio dictator at the shop. Everyday I bring in my battered 2nd-gen iPod and set it on a greasy iPod dock. In this building that was a livery stable a hundred years ago, the tuner/amplifier drives the two speaker towers I’ve hoisted into the rafters, and a powered subwoofer sits directly atop the restroom hutch. A snippet of electrical tape next to the volume knob serves two purposes: it eliminates the possibility of blowing out another speaker tower from a burst of static at plug in and defines the business hours volume limit. Louder than that, the music interferes with phone conversations on the far side of the building, and the subwoofer shakes the restroom like Boeing 707 flying low over a tin-roof shack.

Stereo at work

Stereo at work /

devoteam.jpg image from Pacific Pedaling


The industrial shredder company, SSI made a promotional video for its shredder with bicycles. As horrible as that may sound, it is entertaining; especially the squeak sound the saddle makes at 0:41.

Bell Hat with Mark V modification

Bell hat with star

I got a new hat from Bell but it seemed to be missing a certain something. So I added some style like I do to all my bikes.


In Taiwan, Pacific Cycles Museum


Magnesium wonder

If not for the timing, we’d join the bike industry at the Taipei International Cycle Show this weekend. The show overlaps with SXSW and that’s where we ride and evangelize the bike annually. So I’m sharing photos from a visit to Pacific Cycle’s Museum last year when I was in Taiwan for a media event.

Posted earlier this month on Pacific and their influence and this is another follow up to the work they do. Don’t let their quirkiness of the bikes in the collection convince you that Pacific just makes whacky stuff, they were the first to bring CAD and CNC to the industry, as well as 3D printing.

Living the technology

Living the Technology

If you find yourself in Taiwan and/or working in the industry, a trip to see what George has collected is highly recommend.

Slay the Slalom

Slay the Slalom

See the rest of the photos on G+ or Flickr. How many bikes did you recognize?

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