Last month was exciting. We raffled the Encino frame on the 10th (it also ended with my Paypal account being closed due to gambling issues, hah!), the Idea Cafe grant money finally came in giving me about 4 weeks to order parts for and build the two bikes I planned for the Rough Riders Rally July 23rd-25th, so I ignored a lot of things that weren’t too pressing and got the frames built with hardly any time to put parts on them. One actually made it to the Rally, and completely unintentionally, it was my own bike. It’s the bike I’m pictured with after a lot of saddle time for a seemingly ‘short’ ride. The second bike I built to use a belt drive system, but didn’t know just how far the belt drive ‘chainring’ sits in compared to a normal chainring. We had also planned to use a 39t front ring, but due to the restrictions of belt lengths had to go with a 46t. It would have cleared a 39t just fine, but for a new project and parts I’ve never worked with I was probably lucky that was my biggest issue. I didn’t have the spare parts, or time to replace the chainstays before we had to leave, so we had to make Matt’s cross bike functional for the ride. We didn’t even have time to send out to paint/powder since that requires an extra couple weeks most times.
The ride itself made the weeks of working 14 hr days totally worth it. We arrived after the kick-off Friday morning ride just in time for pizza and hanging out with the events participants. I was quickly introduced to Jacquie Phelan who proceeded to write my name in sharpie on my neck so she could remember it. There were some people I knew already from previous Adventure Corps events, and a lot of folks I didn’t know and Jacquie was just one of many mountain biking legends in attendance that weekend. The rides all left from Tam Bikes in Mill Valley. A really cute shop in what appears to be the main drag of cool, small businesses. We stayed in San Francisco with friends because we’re too cheap to pay for hotels more often than at 508. The choice to stay 20 miles away was a bit of a problem the next morning when we turned up late to the pre-ride coffee and bagels portion of the day. We ended up not being the only ones to have issues getting moving quickly, and eventually set off with Adventure Corps regulars Mike and Donna and our personal Marin County resident tour guide, Jacquie Phelan. We thought we’d catch up to the riders, and we probably would have if we hadn’t taken a fairly long break to enjoy the West Point Inn on Mt Tam. Jacquie is a member, so we got a full tour. We decided we should probably ride up there and stay overnight sometime to fully enjoy the view.
The entire route on Saturday was an epic 36 miles that somehow took us 6 hours. It may have been the 6000ft of climbing. Or the overall group tendency to stop and take pictures. Maybe we rode slower than we thought we did? I’m leaning toward blaming the climbing though. There were some definite sections where my 8spd Internally Geared hub just wasn’t geared low enough and I ran faster up the hills. I crashed myself once just going too fast downhill through a turn. It was a great first ride for a brand new bike. The top tube was later branded by Jacquie and her Sharpie. Super funny, and I kinda don’t want to paint over it.
We had dinner, and some awesome guest speakers after Saturday’s ride. There was also a ‘Best Bike’ award from the ride. Not surprisingly, Sean Rawland’s bike took top honors with my own coming in second. I couldn’t really complain seeing as it was unfinished and kind of a weird bike. I made the internally geared hub’s cables run inside the whole frame, so it’s been mistaken as a single speed many times.
Next time, I’d probably opt for staying in Mill Valley. Driving and riding back and forth to the city proved to be time consuming and meant we missed out on some of the fun. I’d also hope to start the bikes sooner, but some things are out of my control in that department.
Now for picture time!
Jerseys (okay, skinsuit, but it makes it easier to show all of it):
The jerseys arrived just after we returned from Rough Riders. I have been super happy with the quality and the turnout for them. Distribution has been totally exciting and totally worth it. I’m looking forward to doing a second order now that everyone realizes they totally missed out the first time. email me if you don’t want to be left out this time! email@example.com
Don’t forget to donate to the Velodrome for your raffle ticket!
You could be like this guy! Anthony won the masters omnium at Encino during ‘A Fist Full of Handlebars.’ Congratulations and thanks for making my frame look cool!
I can’t believe I considered staying home from the San Diego show this year! It was even more fun this year than last because the extreme anxiety from not knowing what to expect wasn’t there this time around. There was a great mix of bikes and people again. Pretty sure traveling with friends was a great part of it as well. Swrve helped keep me company and confuse plenty of people about who was building frames and who was making clothes. Who asked for traditional gender roles, anyway?
Anthony from Velo Cult (quite possibly my favorite bike shop. ever) took photos of everyone’s bikes and made them all look amazing with his studio set up. All of the photos can be found on their site, and of course here are my bikes…
I’m still selling $25 raffle tickets for the Encino Velodrome Custom Frame Raffle! I mean, I’m facilitating $25 donations to the Encino Velodrome and notifying every donor by snail mail with half of a little colored ticket. So, donate to the velodrome and you just might get a new frame!
My internet connection is inconsistent at best at home right now, so I’m slow updating (and the post was written on May 1st and posted 3 days later when we replaced the modem). I have some photos to update of a new frame getting ready to ship out to a bike messenger in Philly. Yay, East coast!
Donations are not gambling!
That frame with the train-track bridge is still at powder. I rejected round 1, so hopefully it comes back looking great and in time for SD! I’ve had a hell of a time with powder and paint. This is the 2nd frame I’ve had re-coated this year. Ugh.
After a lot of back and forth in my head over going to the show, I finally landed on ‘yes.’ It didn’t hurt that I’ll be sharing a booth with my friends over at Swrve Urban Cycling Apparel. That said, March is extra busy and it was already a busy month. I’ve already been sick, so I’ve at least got that out of the way as well.
Come by and chat at the booth and buy a ticket for the Encino Velodrome Raffle! My Paypal account was put on hold for ‘promoting gambling.’ Still trying to argue the merit of the fundraiser!
From now until July 10th you can buy raffle tickets to win a custom frame! I tend to get involved with fundraisers as it is, so doing something for my home track that always needs some help seemed natural. Shirts are also available through the shopping cart feature. I’ll be sending the second side of the tickets out to everyone that purchases them online!
Speaking of track.. This bike is headed out to powder. It’ll be back in a nice Hello Kitty pink with an Edge fork.
I’ve been relieved for 2009 to end and a new year to begin. It’s not that I think anything really changes between December 31st and January 1st, but 2009 was pretty mean to a lot of us.
The year ended on a great note at least. I won the $1000 grant from the nice folks at Idea Cafe and thanks to my friends and family voting for me. Their blog post is here:
One of the projects I’m working on because of the grant is a bike for a good friend, ‘teammate’, former housemate and all around awesome vegan cyclist Matt! The bike is going to be designed for an event in July put on by our friends over at Adventure Corps. Some is on pavement, some on dirt, all for the sake of fun and adventure. New to their event schedule this year is the Rough Riders Rally in Marin County, CA. The event information is at the Adventure Corps page. Registration is open, and limited so I would sign up now if you’re interested!
I’ve also got a friend working on a jersey design to be released soon. The order will go through Voler to keep things as local as possible.
I’m ready to do complete builds. It’s really nice to be able to order parts for bikes rather than sending the frame/fork off to uncertainty. This road bike got the full Ultegra 6700 treatment with Shimano wheels and my favorite FSA compact bars. Her new owner is currently pregnant, so we left some room with the spacers and stem for changes.
I applied to a $1000 small business grant in September on a bit of a whim. It was for existing businesses or to help start a new company. Ideally the money would be going to not only help the business, but help others in the process. This is where the Moth Attack Team comes in. The money would be going toward a frame or two as well as help get some jerseys going (and skinsuits, yay track racing!). Specifically, I really want to get my friend Matt on a frame for The Adventure Corps Rough Riders Rally that may also turn into a bike for some other plans he has in mind that I don’t want to talk about before he does. If anyone will beat the hell out of a bike and ride it on epic adventures, it is definitely Matt.
I made it in to the original top 40 out of 1000 or so (as did another bikey company!) and then made the top 5 out of 40. Being down to the top 5 is already awesome in itself, but I might as well take it all the way, right? They are choosing the grant winner by popular vote. You have to register your email so there aren’t several votes from the same address over the voting period. It’s actually really simple, and they are nice enough to not spam you for registering to help folks like me out.
The voting page is here: Idea Cafe grant voting!
Also! I have some of these No Sweat shirts left in Men’s Medium, Large and one XXL. I also have one Women’s Small. I’m going to place another order from Alternative Apparel on some different colors as soon as they are gone though so I don’t have a couple dozen shirts laying around. I’ll ship them for $17 with paypal, or in person for $15 if we can meet-up easily. Shoot me an email if you want one! firstname.lastname@example.org