Issue 21: Drop Bar Playground

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by Byron on Feb 20, 2015 at 12:41 PM

diverge photo

Ridden with Patrick Brady from Red Kite Prayer enough now to know when he’s really into something, like more than the usual “Fast, new bike from whoever or whatever,” but something that put him at the “intersection of road bikes, unpaved roads and wildly varied terrain.”

Like the Diverge.

He loved it and told me so wild-eyed, sweaty, and almost spitting his words. Seeing him so lucid with expressions about the gravel bike, I insisted he write the experience down and he did.

Drop Bar Playground is included in Issue 21 of our magazine.

Read it with an annual subscription of $16 or $4 for the issue.

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Santa Cruz Stigmata: Skinny Bikes are Cool Again

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by Byron on Feb 19, 2015 at 10:20 AM


An addition to a brand’s product line hasn’t driven this much traffic and conversation since tubes were shaped to cheat the wind, and aero road bikes became a category. Comments I’ve read about the Santa Cruz Stigmata include

What has Santa Cruz become like Spesh and are making Coastal bikes?

Gravel bikes are to bicycles what the El Camino is to cars: a vehicular hermaphrodite.

and “Skinny bikes are the new fat bikes.” For the record, I was dissing fat bikes, as being over-marketed beyond a few select purposes, before it suddenly became cool.

In Issue 21, we have two stories – both for and against – about fat bikes.

From Matt Haughey

Fat bikes are machines that emit joy, both for the rider and everyone that encounters them.

and Nathan Wright

It is not that fat bikes are bad, the truth is they are great for their intended purpose (as Matt shared with us in Issue 17 and 21), but the way they are being marketed will be their undoing and illustrates the biggest issue facing the bicycle industry, an issue that can be summed up with a joke. How do you make a small fortune in the bike industry? You start with a large one. Welcome to the reality of the bike industry.

And with much of the country snowed in, it’s expected fat bikes are having a great season.

A fatbike isn’t gonna ride through a snowbank either, but it will handle the thaw better than most; except perhaps a good cross bike, like you can expect the Stigmata is.

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Youth Bike Summit

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by Byron on Feb 18, 2015 at 7:57 PM

An event I regret missing happened last Valentines Day and it was the Youth Bike Summit


This annual summit aims to transform local communities and strengthen the national movement by empowering youth bicycle leaders. Youth from across the country will meet at Bike Works and nearby neighborhood locations for 3 days to share ideas and learn together.

In the last five years the Youth Bike Summit has grown to be a national event drawing people from 26 states and 4 countries last year! 484 youth, adults, educators, bikers, crafters, makers and enthusiasts attended last year with 125 additional participants watching online.

Good stuff and I hope to attend next year. The organizers uploaded the keynotes to YouTube and they’re shared above.

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It’s Bike Hugger 2.0!

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by Byron on Feb 17, 2015 at 7:08 AM

Manage Your Subscription

Well that was fast! The update to our mag app is available now. And so what’s new in 2.0?

  • Font resizing.
  • Paginated back issues for faster browsing.
  • Delete issues once you’re done reading them to save space (left swipe to delete).
  • Bug fixes, stability improvements, and more.

It swipes a lot smoother too, comes bundled with a new sampler, and Issue 21 just dropped last week with that fabulous cover.

If you don’t have apps set to automatically update, 2.0 is waiting for you in the app store.

On the Web

To read us on the web, sync your iTunes account email via the app or login there. Windows, Droid, and desktop users the web view was made just for you, it’s OS independent, and the same ad-free bike content we’ve published since June, 2013.

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Eroica CA

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by Byron on Feb 16, 2015 at 11:40 AM


Was just talking this weekend about a new ride to do, something unique and different…then today, got the PR that Eroica CA registration is open.

Eroica CA will be held from April 10-12, 2015 in Paso Robles, California. Registration is limited to 1000 riders and a cost of $150 per-entrant. There are three course distances: 123, 65 and 41-miles.

Owned and organized by the founders of Italy’s famous L’Eroica vintage bike ride, participants may only use a bicycle that was built before 1987, with many riders using two-wheelers built prior to World War II.

Part of the proceeds benefiting local non-profit, Hospice of SLO County.

The ride will take place on Sunday, April 12 and the weekend will include a Classic Bicycle Concours in central Paso Robles and will also feature a vintage market, including classic bicycles, parts and other merchandise.

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Issue 21 Seasons

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by Byron on Feb 13, 2015 at 11:30 AM

Issue 21

The cover: it’s like you want to be wrapped in it, make a comforter with the pattern.

Issue 21 Seasons is available now on iTunes and the Web with articles about fat bikes, gravel, racing, roadies, and relationships.

And lines from our contributors like these:

…fat bikes are machines that emit joy, both for the rider and everyone that encounters them

I like the intersection of road bikes, unpaved roads and wildly varied terrain

As middle-aged men took to Twitter expressing their rage they did so without looking at the fact that every team invited to the 2015 Tour of California is better on a competitive level than Airgas-Safeway.

Annual subscriptions are $16 or an individual issue for $4. Your money directly supports the authors, photographers, and editors who contribute to Bike Hugger.

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How to Buy/Sell on eBay, Lesson #1

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by Mark V on Feb 12, 2015 at 1:08 AM

Lesson #1: Know your product and know your target demographic. Example, this “Bianchi Recumbent Bike” being listed from somewhere in the good ol’ 253 area code. The description says: “This is a vintage bike, what is called a messenger bike, with reverse pedaling.” At first glance, the seller has nailed the description as a laid-back kind of Bianchi bike, and who is more laid-back on a bike than a messenger? Every messenger needs a nimble bike like this when they want to reverse pedal away from a bath with soap. But if you read between the lines, the seller reveals himself to be of the social vangaurd when he equates “messenger” as “vintage”…slyly acknowledging that the messenger scene is so over now that mainstream ‘rents provide a pseudo-messenger bike to their spawn as part of the mandatory community college survival pack. Real MESSENGERS don’t exist anymore, there are only roving gangs of Jimmy John’s delivery riders threatening low-level office drones with ill-timed lane changes and soggy, bland sandwiches.

Notice that no frame size is indicated; this is because the only size that a REAL messenger cares about is a 12oz can versus a 40oz bottle…because the bottle is like way better because it’s twice as big as the can.

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Magazine Bonus: Another Free Issue

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by Byron on Feb 11, 2015 at 11:28 AM

Issue 00

Shared yesterday that we created a new Sampler issue from our first 20 issues. It’s bundled as the base issue (free with the download) in our updated-to-iOS 8, iTunes Newsstand app. While the update to the app is being approved by Apple (about two weeks), you can download the previous base issue for free too.

So that’s two free issues for a limited time – after Apple approves our update app, Issue 00 changes from free with our app to the per issue price of $4.00.

To read the free issues, download our app from iTunes, tap “back issues” from the main menu, grab the Sampler issue, and then scroll down to get Issue 00 too.

And I hope you enjoy all that content. Considering subscribing too on iTunes or the Web: annual subscriptions are $16; individual issues are $4.

Here’s what’s in Issue 00….

  • From Lance to Rapha, Cycling Moves to the People — David Schloss
  • Mark V’s Opinion on Carbon Clinchers at Levi’s Gran Fondo — Mark V
  • Garmin Edge 810: GPS Computer Wins Battle-Loses War — David Schloss
  • Reluctant to Change, Grow, and Become Safer — Byron
  • SRAM Hydro: Tested, Approved, Recommended — Byron
  • Lance Can’t Bully the Truth — Byron
  • Old School — Bike Hugger
  • Waiting for Tubeless Cyclocross Options — Mark V

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Magazine: Enjoy the Free Samples

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by Byron on Feb 10, 2015 at 10:44 AM

samples

Back in the day, when blogging emerged to disrupt traditional media, David Jacobs and I published blogs together with Movable Type. That was an era that helped change how business was done. Working together to publish a magazine last year, David and I changed it up again with a strongly independent, bike-centered focus. The spirit is the same as that early blog work on mobile devices, and ad-free. Compare us to an indie label that doesn’t want to sell out, but still reach a larger audience. David’s company, 29th Street Publishing, runs the platform that publishes our content for the iTunes Newsstand and mobile devices. Bike Hugger contributors supply it, and today we published a new sampler that includes our best writing from the first 20 issues. The samples are bundled with the free newsstand app that’s just been updated to iOS 8 (as soon as Apple approves it, update notifications will go out) and available on the web.

I hope you enjoy our magazine as much as we did creating it. For us, it’s like a fast new bike, taking us to even more interesting places.

To read the samples, sign in on the web or download the app from iTunes and then grab the Sampler issue.

That Cover

In those few moments when I spin down from the latest tangent that I’m on…talking and thinking a mile a minute, about the next big thing in bikes, a designer and friend Michael Pfaltzgraff articulates in colors and style what I was trying to say.

Genius!

And when he shared the cover for the samples issue, I replied, “I wanna be draped in that and see women on catwalks wearing it this spring with strappy sandals.”

Beautiful.

Michael makes my ideas and our contributor’s content look so good, just like he does bikes in the industry.

The Content

Paywall

Yep we expect you to pay for our magazine content; well, not the free samples, but the rest of it! Please subscribe on iTunes or the Web: annual subscriptions are $16; individual issues are $4.

Your money directly supports the authors, photographers, designers (like Michael), and editors who contribute to Bike Hugger.

Issue 21 drops this week too.

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