Inspired In Barcelona


We’ve ridden in Barcelona too and were inspired then and now. Ali Clarkson, Sean Watson, Danny MacAskill and guest rider Duncan Shaw ride some of the unique spots in Barcelona in this edit. Our time there wan’t free styling, but observing the Magnificent Streets, Folding Bikes, and Roundabouts in Girona.

Spain 06

A Spanish Intersection in 06

Fix It Sticks In Your Pocket and Workbench

Fixit Sticks

On the Workbench

After getting the latest PR about a return to Kickstarter and another launch, I asked Brian Davis the Founder of Fix It Sticks what was going on. He told me

Fix It Sticks returns to Kickstarter to launch their all new replaceable line of tools. Last year the company came to life making 2 sticks with permanently installed bits that interlock to form a T-wrench. Now they return to bring a more flexible line of tools that have replaceable bits.

So that’s a Fixit Stick for your pocket – we put ours in tool rolls – and the work bench. the Fix It Sticks Replaceable Edition is on Kickstarter for $30 per set (expected MSRP: $36) which includes 8 bits total and a recycled inner tube pouch. Also releasing the all new Fix It Sticks T-Way Wrench which is a permanent T-wrench for shop use and comes with 7 bits for $25 (expected MSRP $30). Both tools have powder coating options in case you want to color match with your bikes.

Brian added

With manufacturers using all sorts of different hexes and Torx fittings today this platform makes sense. Rather than buy all new tools riders can just grab a bit from any hardware store. They are past the funding goal, so these tools will be a reality soon, but the discount through the pre-order process is a good incentive to back to the project.

The Kickstarter campaign is here and you can pre-order on the their website too. The original version is also on Amazon.

In the Tool roll

In the tool roll

Milano-San Remo 1992: The Legend of Sean Kelly

This weekend is the first really big professional road race on the calendar, Milano-San Remo. Up until now, it’s roughly been the equivalent of spring training, but Milano-San Remo is the first race of the year that really, really counts. It’s got history; it’s a race that the racers’ fathers’ fathers dreamed of winning. It’s got scenery, speeding along the Italian coast in the first rays of spring. It’s long, at almost 300km/185miles. And it’s got speed. The only climbs are relatively shallow and come late in the race, and M-SR would almost be easy if the peloton weren’t just drilling it for more than six and a half hours before they get to the 3km finishing straight in San Remo. The race usually ends in a bunch sprint, but on occasion a wily racer can keep a gap off the last climb, the Poggio, since the descent is sinuous and narrow.

In 1992, the Ariostea team’s leader Moreno Argentin stormed up the Poggio, breaking free of his rivals well before the crest of the climb. The veteran Italian would keep his lead all the way down the descent that emptied into the finishing straight, where he would celebrate his first win at Milano-San Remo.

Or at least he would have if Sean Kelly hadn’t absolutely blistered the Poggio’s descent. We are talking LEGENDARY. It’s not that Argentin wasn’t making a fast descent, though he was being a bit conservative. No, it’s that Kelly was brilliant. He wasn’t even the at the front of the chasers at the crest of hill, but he leaves them all behind like they had opened parachutes. Kelly is on Argentin’s wheel right as they entered the straight, and even at 36yrs of age the former TdF green jersey winner still packed a formidable sprint. It was Kelly’s second M-SR win and the last major win of his illustrious career.

Celeb Framebuilder Swears off Award Shows

Brando Warhol

A builder like Brando

He’s got the longest waitlist of them all (waitlists are how framebuilders measure their worth in this game) and stayed home from the annual framebuilder pageant. The backchannel chatter about NAHBS (North American Handbuilt Bike Show) was more negative this Spring than most shows. I’ll leave the why that is for the people that were there, but this is like Brando swearing off award shows ‘cause it’s not about the art.

Most Y2K framebuilders couldn’t work without a cad program. Or design a frame without a misfitter. Many couldn’t produce a frame without a dedicated fixture, or measure “straight” without a two ton granite table. There’s a whole subculture that goes online and asks OTHER framebuilders how to add braze-ons, what tubes to use, and what brazing rod to buy. These guys aren’t building something as much as they’re assembling material based on a set of instructions. And who among them still makes his own forks?! Things have changed, alright.

Well of course it isn’t. I also don’t expect Sachs to get fat and wear a muumuu, but he does fashion himself as a celeb. One trained in the craft and not playing to some scripted reality show.

Ignore the best lug or ironic facial hair awards and find a builder near you. The best ones I know don’t seek the limelight. They just make bikes, like this one by Bill Davidson and Mark V…

D-Plus in the Gulley

D-Plus outfitted for gravel with those Sammy Slicks

Light & Motion Solite 100

I’ve got this thing going on where Start out the work week sick, stumble through a couple days dead on my feet, become a whirling dervish of productivity for the next two days and then fall sick again for my days off. An old roommate flew in to town to get away from the Deep South for a bit and do some hiking. I had to opt out, but I gave him one of my Light & Motion lights, the Solite 100. It’s a little multi-purpose, USB-rechargeable light that can be hand held, stood on end with an articulating light head, or worn on a strap about a helmet or bare head. You can get a bike-mount for it, but there are other L&M lights that do that better. It’s not super bright compared to my L&M bike lights, but it does provide more than enough light to set up camp on a dark, cold, rainy night out on the Olympic peninsula. And with a 20hr burn time on low, you have enough time to get things done without worrying that it’ll cut out on you. But I still couldn’t be motivated to leave the warmth of my apartment.

I think my friend was just enjoying the novelty of cold rain; he went back to Alabama on a Monday night red eye. Meanwhile, I’ve had all winter to enjoy rubbish wet weather. I’d gladly take some sunshine, and if not that, then at least good health. Literally sick and tired of this.

Light & Motion Solite

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