In The Shop: Litespeed Ti

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by Byron on Apr 13, 2015 at 7:52 PM

Ti

Seeing this old Litespeed in a shop invoked memories, with its geometrically enhanced tubing. Ti-3Al-2.5V was borrowed from aerospace, where strength, weight, and malleability are critical factors for hydraulic systems. Shaping tubes into triangles and then welding them at the joints, takes a skilled welder, and when done right, Ti is superior material for bike frames. Later carbon overtook the demand for Ti, but it’s still our all-around fav. That’s because of the springy ride and durability. Good titanium frames happen when high quality tubing is joined by expert welders, who join the tubes cleanly without ruining the raw materials.

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Wired: 138 MPH Down a Ski Slope

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by Byron on Apr 12, 2015 at 7:25 AM


While watching Paris-Roubaix this morning, also reading the story from my friends at Wired about How You Design a Bicycle to Hit 138 MPH on a Ski Slope. You know, as if the cobbles, aren’t extreme enough….

Once the suit and bike were ready, the team put Barone in the wind tunnel, happy to find that their computer modeling delivered the aerodynamic numbers they were hoping for. “It’s about the same approach as Formula One,” says Amerigo, or designing a plane.

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A Road It Seems You Could Ride Forever

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by Byron on Apr 10, 2015 at 3:05 PM

Tulips

Tulips by Ben Moses

Getting your groove back on the bike, experiencing that momentum once again, and immersing yourself in the ride is the theme for Issue 23 of our magazine. Dropping on the same weekend as Paris-Roubaix, it also includes a free cover story from Mark V about a race that is simultaneously one of the most famous and the least representative of the sport. There’s a crazy story I heard about Roubaix too.

A couple months ago, in Issue 21, Patrick wrote about a drop bar playground and how he

… Never stopped loving the way the bike could swoop and zoom over unpredictable terrain.

He said those words to me just a few hours after riding Old Caz on a Diverge. He was still buzzing from the experience, beaming from the afterglow. I said, “write that down!” And he did. The emotions of rediscovering what makes us ride long hours keeps us going through the lows and for new riders, it’s what you’ll end up chasing too. Doesn’t matter where you find it — a personal best commute, race, ride, or tour — just that you eventually do.

The groove happened for me a few weekends ago, when we decided to just keep riding on a nice day after so much rain, and finished at 5 hours and 100 miles. Stepping off the bike, within an hour I was doing chores, and having dinner with family. It hit me then, “just banged out a hundred miles, then vacuumed, some laundry, and NOT TIRED.”

Still in shape to ride that long, I gotta keep the momentum going.

Also, the sounds of that ride is wrote I about in Issue 22….

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What is in Your Bag?

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by Byron on Apr 08, 2015 at 9:03 AM

Bag

Reaching inside of this bag, I expected to find something illicit, illegal, or perverse, but instead I found a jug of cranberry juice.

Sort of a let down.

No vodka either.

I know Mark has carried much of his daily life in that bag. You can get one custom bag made sort of like it from R.E.Load or a bespoke bag maker near you.

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Bigger Tires

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by Byron on Apr 06, 2015 at 4:52 PM

word

I don’t know what the world may need but bigger tires are a good start for me…

It’s that time of year when I get asked to recommend bikes and the response is…”at the mid to high end, bikes are all good, can’t find a bad one; so, get the one that’ll fit the biggest tire possible and then run them at lowest pressure you can.”

As this photo shows, cram that tire in there!

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Flanders 2015 Highlights

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by Byron on Apr 05, 2015 at 12:14 PM


The final kilo with Kristoff beating Terpstra 3


The Shimano team car hitting Jesse Sergent AND The FDJ team car AND Sebastien Chavanel.


The tweet of the race.

Also see this moment when Lizzie Armitstead saved it after her cleat broke at 200M in the women’s race.

To the team/support cars it’s a known danger, and happening more often.

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Forest for the Trees

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by Byron on Apr 03, 2015 at 6:09 PM

Such a shame to crop these photos to 1:1 for Instagram, so here’s the original, wide in the gulley. If George Carlin was alive today and a photographer, think he’d tell the boys at Insta where they can put their square format. That’s a Ridley X-Fire we have in to demo.

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Bontrager Flare R: Daylight Visibility

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by Byron on Apr 02, 2015 at 10:39 AM

Daytime running lights

I’ve been running daytime lights in Seattle for a couple seasons now on my rain bike – the choice varies depending on what we have in on test and that’s currently the Flux from Spesh (more on those in another post). With gray skies, changing weather, and traffic I’m usually blinking most days, and early evenings, until the sun sticks around for more than a few hours during the Summer.

Today Bontrager announced their all-new Flare R, designed for daylight visibility. As their PR says

While using a light in the daytime may seem counterintuitive, studies have shown that 80% of cycling accidents occur during the day(1). Additional studies on accidents resulting in the fatality of a cyclist show that in 40% of all bicycle vs. car accidents, the victim was struck from behind(2). Bontrager engineers began developing Flare R to combat these staggering statistics, with the ultimate goal of increasing confidence and safety with a lightweight, sleek, compact product that is relevant to every type of cyclist, from recreational to racer.

The Flare R is a 65 Lumen CREE LED (brighter than a car light) with four distinct patterns, two for daylight-riding and two designed for nighttime usage.

  • Day Flash mode will utilize all 65 Lumens in a strategically placed random flash pattern designed to draw a motorist’s eyes.
  • Fully charged run time is 5.75 hours.
  • Day Steady mode uses 25 Lumens of steady illumination and is great for group rides.
  • Fully charged run time is 4.25 hours.
  • Night Flash mode uses an irregular flash pattern punctuated by short pops of increased intensity.
  • Fully charged run time is 23 hours.
  • Night Steady mode provides 5 Lumens of steady light great for consistent nighttime visibility.
  • Fully charged run time is 21 hours
  • MSRP $59.99.

Like the Volvo Light Paint I mentioned in our social channels last week, critics will tweet

And sure, but I’ve been talking about the lack of a safety emphasis from the bike industry for years and welcome these new products. As road sales flattened and decline, marketers are figuring out the needs of everyday biking and how fear keeps people from riding.

1 Reported Road Casualties Great Britain: 2013: Main Results”, Department for Transport, 2014 “Collisions Involving Cyclists on Britain’s Roads: Establishing the Causes”, TRL Report PPR 445, 2009; 2 Every Bicyclist Counts, League of American Bicyclists, May 2014

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A Short History of the Bike Toss

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by Byron on Apr 01, 2015 at 9:54 AM


In honor of Jack Bauer’s performance at #GentWevelgem, here’s an updated version of The Bike Toss (A Short History). Di2 failed on me once and hard, jolting the whole bike. I didn’t have a camera crew nearby on a moto or overhead in a chopper, but I sure threw that bike….

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