Saturday, December 11, 2010

Rain Bike

It rained like a motherfucker Thursday and I got to ride around in most of it. I went over to CityBikes and picked up a used rear fender to cut down and fuck around with so it fits on my zero-clearance track bike. The day before I had picked up a couple of used front fenders at A Better Cycle. Tired of the skunk stripe and wet feet. I know they make these little fenders that fit on the back of seatstays and forks but the front one doesn't really do shit. I took two full coverage fenders and cut them down a little where they wouldn't clear the frame and fork. I had to drill and tap the rear dropouts and use some P-clamps up front, but it don't look half-bad. They wrap down pretty far so they should work as well as the fenders on my 52 Schwinn.

Srsly, I am not being a pussy about this rain. It was raining hard the whole time I was riding in the city, and then on my way home from the train station it started raining harder. I was wearing Burley rain pants and a rain jacket, and by the time I got home my Vans, wool socks, Levis, and hoodie were wet, just from water coming in the seams and dripping in around my neck. My gloves were soaked thru but they are not even water-resistant. I guess my backpack isn't either because it had an inch of water inside it!

They work pretty well although the rear one would be better if it went down to the chainstays, right now it is dumping water onto the Velo Orange sealed bottom bracket. Not having the little "nose" of the fender doesn't seem to make a difference. As a side note, Von Dutch did the same sort of thing on some of the motorcycles he built, he just rotated the stock fenders back to get a kustom look. Looks cool and works better.

I also decided to get rid of the lane splitters for the winter. These mustache bars came off of an exercise bike and have no drop/rise. I like cork bar tape in the rain the best. Seems counterintuive but the water just squeezes right out of them.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Deathtrap updated

Yup, still trying to reach back to the glory days when I was a BMXer. My skill level is about the same as it was when I was about 15. Last weekend I managed to hang my bike over the coping and drop in, pretty stoked about that. Fakies are easy now with that KHE Astern Freecoaster. I think I finally have the confidence I need to really start improving, just in time for winter. Anybody got enough room in their basement for a mini halfpipe?

Frame: Premium Deathtrap 21" top tube Heat-treated 4130 CrMo
Fork: Hoffman 4130 CrMo
Headset: Sputnik integrated
Crank: mid-school GT
Sprocket: Animal 25t
Pedals: Primo meat tenderizer
Bars: Mosh Street Bars
Stem: Fit frontloader
Grips: Revenge Industries "Da Kine"
Chain: KMC Z Chain
Seat: S&M Bike Thin Rail
Seatpost: cut in half
Front Wheel: 36h Sun Big Baller Animal GLH 2.25 tire
Rear Wheel: 48h Sun Big City KHE Astern FreeCoaster Animal GLH 2.1 tire

Friday, September 17, 2010

For the amount of time I spend on this machine....'d think I would update my blog more often. Truth is I am working on a fixed/free hub I made and I don't want to post about it until all the bugs are worked out. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Forest Park Klunker Ride

The organizers didn't even show up! Only two people besides myself showed up for the ride, one guy on a modern singlespeed and the other on a first year Specialized Stumpjumper. We rode up to Forest Park and went up Leif Erickson Drive. I had to leave them because my gearing was taller than what the dude had on the singlespeed, and needed to keep my cadence up so I wasn't "pedaling in squares" and tiring myself out. I made it up a little past the 6 mile marker and waited for them at the picnic bench. They didn't show, must have turned around. No worries, I just bombed back down, dodging flustered hikers and off-leash dogs.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Hawthorne Bridge Up

I love that what would be a minor inconvenience now turns into a photo opportunity.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

The Monark SIlver King

Well it's finally done. Big, fat tires and everything! They are 24" x 2.3 but they barely fill the huge fenders. I just fit with the apehangers and the layback seatpost. It cleaned up really nice. The front fender had some dents and it was painted with house paint, which scraped off without damaging the paint and pinstriping underneath. I'm getting good at popping out dents and took care of a couple on the "tank" too. The back wheel was really rusty, so I replaced it with a used rim and spokes taken from a 5-speed 24" wheel. I used the matching front wheel and then painted both rims semi-gloss black using the "spin" method. You just stick it in the truing stand and spin it, and spray away. No runs doing it like this, and it's fast. I also rebuilt the British Perry coasterbrake. It has sort of an odd design compared to the Bendix, but the cool thing is that it can only be assembled one way, and from one side. The fork was bent too. It was the steerer tube itself that was bent and it was quite a task straightening it, and it is still a little wonky. I'm lucky that I keep random shit like headset bearings as they were ground away to nothing, but I had a pair that fit. I think the chainwheel is from the Columbia. This bike is tiny, it's almost as cramped as a Stingray. Still fun to ride around on, as long as you don't mind standing to pedal.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Layback seatposts

I made one for that Monark 24" that Dan the VW Man gave me. It came out so good that I made one for my 52 Schwinn too. It's amazing what you can do with a protractor, a hacksaw, some files, and a drill.

The Monark 24" is pretty much all sorted out except for needing some big fat tires. Pictures soon as it's finished.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Dan delivers the Motherload.

My friend Dan came by in his new truck. It a 1964 Dodge, straight off the farm.

He plans to leave the paint just the way it is. The 225 c.i. Slant-6 runs like a top. It came with all the parts needed to make it 4WD, which will happen sometime this spring. Then it will be a Power Wagon.

The early 1964 trucks had dual headlights. later 1964 trucks had single headlights with a big chrome trim ring. I can't believe that chrome bumper has made it 46 years unscathed. I hope I didn't jinx it.

The rear bumper is handmade. I love this kind of bumper, I've never seen two that are the same. Three different sizes of trailer hitch ball.

The hole for the stereo is kind of a bummer, but fixing it would destroy this amazing decal.

Both sides of the cab floor rotted away ages ago, and were repaired with wood. Dan would like to keep them, but he's getting annoyed with the occasional showers he's getting while driving the truck in the rain. In comparison the pickup bed is completely intact.

This was the occasion for Dan's visit, a donation of bike parts for the newly formed chapter of Dead Baby Bikes in Portland. The tank bike is a 24" Monark, which will be built up into a club loaner bike. The other paperboy frame is a Rocket by Monark which unfortunately has a frozen seatpost, a split down the back of the seat tube, and the seat tube is broken away at the bottom bracket. When I get oxy-acetylene, I am going to swap out the seat tube. It will be good practice, and it will resurrect a beautiful old frame that I will build up into a bitchen Klunker. The red, white, and rust frame is an old Columbia, back when they still made nice bikes. I plan to make this bike into a mutant Klunker, using a 100mm SunTour fork that was recently given to me. Columbia uses a slightly bigger headset than Schwinn, yet slightly smaller than 1-1/8 threadless. The headtube has a thicker OD than my Hoffman's headtube so I figure there is plenty of meat to bore the headtube out to fit the 1-1/8 headset. From there I'm thinking 3-piece BMX cranks, Renthal MX handlebars, disc brake front hub and a Bendix coasterbrake laced to Velocity disc-specific rims, and a Brooks sprung saddle. The girl's frame will get used to make either a swingbike, a chopper, or another burrito bike, I'm not sure yet.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Bubble Visor

Someone gave me these 2 bubble visors, they make re-upholstery kits for these ol' helmets don't they?

Non-Ironic Coffee Bike

Authentic American Iron - a 1952 Schwinn. repacked the coasterbrake today and replaced a spoke. Not bad for annual maintenance.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Enjoy The Trick

I don't know much about Flatland these days. It has progressed so far that it is barely recognisable compared to what it once was. I remember when the change occured, when it went from balance tricks to rolling tricks. Now it's all about trick linkage, and it is mind-boggling to watch a rider go seamlessly from one trick to another, especially for me not knowing WTF they are doing in the first place. It doesn't translate that well to pictures, video is a much better format for it. I apologise for the quality of the pictures, I really need to learn how to use my camera.

The bikes of course are made specifically for flatland. The low gearing, short wheelbase and ultra-low profile frame make them almost useless for getting from point a to point b. Good thing all you need to do flatland, is flat land.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Some bikes @ Backyard Blam!

The pump track was too soggy, but the street jumping contest kicked ass. So did the trick comp (subdivided into fixed gear and freewheel). In the evening there was an offroad slalom race in a local park. It was great to have people on track bikes, people on BMX, and people on DJ bikes all hanging out and getting along. Sometimes the different factions turn their noses up at each other, and it gets tiresome. We all like bikes, right?

Special shout-out to this guy, he fucking SHREDS!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Tweed Ride

This was two weeks ago, but I thought I'd put up some pix from the ride. A lot more people showed up then I ever thought would, and everyone was really friendly and polite. Next time I want to see the girls in hoop skirts and wearing corsets, instead of dressed like the men did BITD.

A Dirty Buzzard from Seattle

Oldest bike

Swiss Army Bike

Me on my tallbike AKA Reverse Cowgirl. That Pennyfarthing had a freewheel.

Gabriel Amadeus' Retro-Direct


Tuesday, February 9, 2010


Rare to see something like this in Portland, it's all Subaru Outbacks and Toyota Prius'.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Hagakure: the book of the samurai

Among the maxims on Lord Naoshige's wall, there was this one: "Matters of great concern should be treated lightly." Master Ittei commented, "Matters of small concern should be treated seriously."

Yamamoto Tsunetomo

Sunday, January 31, 2010


I had to wait for the Burnside Bridge yesterday. I've lived in Portland 7 years and I can still count the number of times I've had to wait for a bridge to go up and down on my hands. I figured rather than sit there and be pissed about being inconvenienced, I would take the opportunity to get some pictures. The first bridge is the Morrison Bridge, the last one is the Steel Bridge. I am slow at taking pictures so I missed the opportunity to snap a pic of the barge and tugboat as it passed under the Burnside Bridge. Yes, I'm still using the "easy" setting.