This has to be the best looking chain tool out there. Made by Topeak, it has already received the prestigious Red Dot Design Award. It reminds me a lot of what Philip Starck would do if he was asked to design a bike tool. It makes me want to unfold it and put it out on the shelf. Who said tools have to stay in the toolbox. More details at Topeak.
This is one fine looking ride. There are a few parts on here that I might swap out, but that SL3 frame looks fast standing still. Completely turned my head.
Photos and bike by Mario Hartman
CATEGORIES: Component Lust,Kit,Rides
I got these wheels about nine months ago almost to the day, and this is the first time I have had them off my bike (I got a massive blow out last weekend that left a whole the size of a quarter in my new Evo Corsa). They have been over some pretty rough terrain in and around New York. They have also been up and down the Pyrenees last summer. Seven different states from California to Pennsylvania, and in and out of a bike box, a lot. After all of these miles and travel Mark at ifixbyx has only had to true them once, after a bounce in and out of a pothole on River Road. Despite the fact these are carbon clinchers, they are my everyday ride wheel, I find them to be absolutely bomb proof. The guys at wheelbuilder.com built them up, and all it took was a visit to the website and a phone call. The rims are Edge Composite 45 Clinchers, with a 20/24 spoke combo. For the hubs I chose the DT Swiss 190’s with ceramic cartridge bearings. The spokes are DT Aerolites in silver. The front wheel weight using the Wheelbuidler calculator comes out at about 650g, the rear wheel around 750g, without the cassette (total wheel weight around 1400g). So not the lightest, but what you loose in weight, you gain back with the DT Swiss super smooth hubs and bearings. They roll beautifully. Now I just have to get a new tire and look out for nine inch nails lying in the middle of the road.
ADDITION: By complete chance I just saw this post via Above Category and I couldn’t agree more. These wheels are not “too finicky for everyday use” as described in Bicycling Magazine. I have found quite the opposite. My rather large blowout was down to nothing more than my bad eyesight. Like he said sell your first born to get them and be proud to ride something niche.
CATEGORIES: Component Lust,Kit
Update! We have finalized the details of the next run of our kit with Capo Forma. If any of you own any Capo kit you will know that it is a high quality product. Great longevity and attention to detail. We will be releasing this round of the kit at cost price (prices per piece below). We are going to do a limited run, so let us know if you are interested nice and early as it will impact the quantities we get per size (we have already had a lot of interest). The main pieces we will offer will be the Elcyclista jerseys and bibs. Also, depending on the amount of interest we may do caps and arm warmers. We made a few tweaks to the original design but nothing major as the feedback we got was so positive. The details are below. If you are interested, drop me an email to email@example.com with the pieces you are interested in and the sizes you would want (the Capo Forma catalogue has more details on sizing). When I get your requests, I’ll email back individually with payment details (we will be doing it through PayPal). Thanks in advance for your support and spreading the word
The Jersey: $65 (USD)
We are getting European race cut (usually means if you like a little room like me you need to go a size up; I am 5’8″ and about 154lbs and medium build – I need a large jersey) using their Drop fabric, Dual-knit, tear drop style knit with proven moisture management and sublimation properties. The design has a full-length lockable hidden zipper, three back pockets and a silicone gel waist gripper.
The Bibs: $75 (USD)
Will be made with their 210 Power Lycra for longevity and have the Corsa chamois insert. It is an elastic one-piece construction with varying thickness (High 10mm, Medium 7mm and Low 5mm), perforated open cells for maximum air flow, anti-microbial microfiber composed of silver ion threads and enhanced perennial channel for additional comfort. This is a great all-around seating option.
Arm warmers: $25 (USD)
Ideal accessory for every climate and condition, providing both muscle support and effective UV protection. Power Lycra® SPF 50 and silicone gel arm gripper.
Caps: $8 (USD)
One size fits all! Standard cap size. Branded inside peak, wear it flipped up in honor of VDB.
Using USPS on Priority Mail, flat rate, with 6 to 1o days delivery time
Domestic (US): $10
CATEGORIES: Classic Jerseys,Design,Kit
Seeing that Ritte frame has inspired me. It may never see the light of day, but I am going to start the long process of designing an Elcyclista frame. Any designers reading this will know and understand that designing for yourself is like counting the hairs on your head. So I wholly expect to be posting the design this time in 2011, but you have to start somewhere. For years now I have been following the guys at Mollusk in San Francisco. They are a custom surfboard maker, and in my opinion the kings of color. Even if you don’t take to the waves (in the same way that we take to the road, expect to show up at the shop and see a “Gone Surfing” sign), what they make and shape are things of beauty. Part surf shop, t-shirt designers, art gallery, music promoter, Mollusk is well worth the visit, but go when the tide is out. Their board designs are simple and understated with beautiful color combinations, and patterns that remind me of retro cycling jerseys. The finish on the boards is amazing and the high gloss resin seal makes the colors they choose really pop. They add in beautifully simple details like pinstripes and single color hand-drawn illustrations. It is a good place to start.
Whilst our Sunday ride was canceled due to 14 inches of snow, Stefan in San Miguel, Spain, was out giving his bike a “wash”. I just got these great shots from him taking his kit out for an inaugural ride around a soggy Spanish countryside. We are lucky enough to have Stefan be a regular reader, as he is also a pretty amazing photographer (check out his work, http://www.stefan-rohner.net/blog/). He said the kit held up well and the mud came out on washing. Also check out his winter ride below, a beautiful Speedvagon from Vanilla Bikes of Portland, Oregon. (Photos: © Carina Berlingeri)
CATEGORIES: Classic Jerseys,Kit
We recently got contacted by a couple of readers from Melbourne (thanks for the support Philip and Eddie) and it prompted me to revisit these shots and the time I spent at one of their towns nicest shops. Now having shamelessly promoted iFixByx, let me say there are certain bike shops that achieve a “special” status. These are the shops that when you travel around the world you make a pilgrimage to go and see. Condor in London, Above Category in Mill Valley, River City in Portland, you tend to hear about their name long before you go. These are the shops that are more than just about selling. They are part museum, community, service, routes, and conversation about everything bikes. Spoke(n) in Melbourne is one of those shops. Located in the St Kilda neighborhood in a beautiful old corner store, the space has been cleaned up to retain most of its original features. They carry a really interesting range of brands, from top-end road frames like Guerciotti and Pinarello, to beautifully coordinated street builds by Schwinn. They have mixed that up with some great bike culture, with little museum cases playing homage to the cycling greats like Eddy Merckx, to selling retro wool jerseys alongside Solo and Capo. Great shop filled with friendly staff who are more than happy to tell you how great the local riding scene is, and how the Beach Road run on Sundays is one of the best rides in the world. That is actually pretty hard to argue with.
iFixbyx is like having your own personal mechanic. Someone who knows your ride intimately, and how to treat her just right. In my case Mark Purdy the owner of iFixbyx also built my ride and has handled all of the upgrades over the last two years. You know how it is when you get on a new build for the first time, that first few days are hard to replicate. Cables get stretched, things get knocked about and the ride is never that smooth again. Well every time I get my bike back from Mark it feels like a new build. Riders are a fussy lot, we like things just right. When you find a good mechanic you usually have to go out of your way to make it work. The nice thing about this service is, that Mark goes out of his way to look after your ride.
Mark stepped back and looked at what was out there, and built the whole idea of iFixByx around customer needs and their lifestyle. It is simple, he offers everything, from basic tune-ups to full PRO builds. You can bring him the parts, or he can get them for you, he doesn’t really care, it is up to you. This is a service not a shop, he isn’t trying to sell you anything. Take advantage of the World Wide Web and source the parts at the best price and bring them to Mark, it is perfect. Then he looked at what was missing out there. Well, how hard is it to actually get to the shop during the week? Work, training, travel, walk the dog….when can I make that work? So Mark will come and pick the bike up from you, do the work and drop it back. Pretty nice. It gets better, for those of you that live outside of NYC this may not apply, but I can tell you setting a bike stand up in the living room doesn’t fly around here. There are some things I can do, and some things I would rather leave to someone who knows, this is not a project after all. iFixByx will also be offering a workstation for you to come and work on your own bike, use some tools and get some guidance from the Sensei. This service alone makes it worth never going to a bike shop ever again.
He has also added a great gift certificate idea that allows you to pay up front for service (or get friends and family to buy it for you!) – which also helps Mark get what he needs to get the business up and running the way he wants. Check it out. You won’t go back to a bike shop ever again.
It is a momentous day here at Elcyclista, today was the first road test of our new kit. A lovely dark 7am start with Chad from Endurance Werx in CP wasn’t really how I was envisioning rolling it out. I was thinking more like maybe along the Cornice outside Nice on the Cote D’Azur on a warm summers morning, but you take what you get. At least it stayed dry. A really nice job from Champion Systems (thanks to Brian Breech for pushing it through), although I may need butt balm with that Chamois. This is a first and limited run which are being given to Elcyclista followers so they can become pedal-powered billboards for us. We have a few sets left, so let us know if you are willing to let us pimp you out and become moving advertising. One clause, we will expect pictures, in kit, from bunch rides and exotic locals. Leave a comment and let us know.
CATEGORIES: Classic Jerseys,Design,Kit
For Condor’s 6oth anniversary and no doubt the fact they have the British Champion in their team Fizi:k have created this special edition saddle in way of celebration. I had to get one, now all I have to do is find a bike to add it to. Another one for the Component Lust section.
CATEGORIES: Component Lust,Kit