SF Cyclotouring

Ride reports and other ramblings from a San Francisco cyclist.


A New Flickr Photo Group?

I'm thinking of creating a new group at Flickr about the food you eat whilst cyclotouring...interested? Should I call it "RideFood" or "BikeFood" or ??? Let me know!

Update: I did it. It's called BikeEats. Feel free to join and post 'em!


Good to be back

Today's the first time I've bike commuted in six weeks. Oww my legs hurt. Brrr it's still chilly out. Gasp I'm outta breath. But it sure feels great!


Picking up where KB left off...?

I love LOVE my "vintage" '94 Bontrager Race hardtail MTB. But when it dies, I'm going to get me one of these...

Enter COTIC from the UK. Making steel and Ti hardtail MTBs that look damn familiar. Like a Bonty but with modern attributes (9/8" headtubes, longer TTs, disk brake mounts, and designed for 100-130mm travel forks)!

Compare their steel Soul frame with a Bontrager Race/Racelite, also check their Ti Soda against a Ti Lite :

* Wishbone rear seatstays. Check!
* Frame gussets. Check!
* 71/74 angles. Check!

Not a direct copy, but familiar enough to make me want one!

Kogswell Build -- First Step

OK, I finally squirted some Framesaver into the Kogswell frame! I'll do a 2nd coat tomorrow night, and then hopefully assembly will commence on Wednesday...



It's All in the Details...

Via Ebay, I recently bought a used set of my current favorite bike pedal: Shimano's PD-M515. Not a snazzy pedal by any stretch, they work well with good float. I've ended up with them on two other bikes since I like to keep things consistent. Anyways, the pair I got looked to be in decent enough shape, but the spindles were just slightly crunchy, so I opened 'em up to re-grease and adjust the minuscule* bearings within. That went off without a hitch and now the things rotate happily, but damn -- the spindle seal is missing from the left pedal. Not a huge deal functionally, and it's ninety-nine percent certain that the Ebay seller didn't realize this. It's exactly the kind of stupid detail that I find, latch onto, and then obsess over. Maybe I can find a thin o-ring that'll fit and work?

* Did you know that the proper spelling of "miniscule" is really "minuscule"? I didn't...


LoFi Porteur Rack

da rack
Originally uploaded by jimgskoop
I finally got around to completing my front cargo rack project...it's based on a cut-down milk crate, some bent aluminum strip, and scrap 1/2" EMT conduit. After staring at a CETMA 5-rail for far too long and obsessing over the fact that they're just won't play real nicely with drop bars (the rack ends up mounting too far away from the head tube), in a moment of clear thought I realized that a milk-crate has about the same dimensions, and since I already had one of those...and a new Stanley FatMax saw.

The neat thing is, the whole thing un/mounts to the bike just by popping off the front wheel's quick release. Because, well, you know, no one wants to be seen riding around with an orange milk-crate bolted to their ride...right?


Bikes in Portland

Found via Tony P's blog...

There's a cool article in the NY Times about bikes and business in Portland, Oregon. There's a related video, too...featuring some nice scenes of Portland, an interview with Tony Pereira including some shots of him mitering tubes and brazing, plus the painfully cute Natalie from Sweetpea.

Takeaway: I must grow me some mutton chops like Tony's!


Bike Parts Cometh!

Stuff from Nashbar
Originally uploaded by jimgskoop
WOOT -- Like xmas in March. See photos for notes/details.


Mixed Terrain Ride Photos



Broken Waltworks Fork
Originally uploaded by bundokbiker
I'm glad this fork isn't mine...but I still sympathize when this happens. Stress risers at the welded joints, perhaps?


Thanks Jim, I owe you my Kingdom!

My last entry had me pining for a seat post, proclaiming that this was the last component I needed to assemble my Kogswell 700C P/R frame.

One of my riding buds (Cyclofiend) pinged me a day or two later with a short message: "Keep an eye out for a package in your mail." Sure enough, a nice silver seatpost arrived shortly thereafter, wrapped in a massive layer of protective bubblewrap. And the Tyvek mailing bag it was sent in will be recycled into numerous tire boots!

Jim, you answered my plea, so now I guess I've gotta hand over the pink-slip to the kingdom! I'm not sure how my wife will feel about that, though...

Of course, the story doesn't end here, because it seem this frame really wants a 27.4mm post, not a 27.2 as specified...



Maybe Number Six? or, My Kingdom for a Seat Post!

Kogswell 700C P/R frameset
Originally uploaded by jimgskoop
That photo over there shows my new Kogswell 700C P/R frame and fork. If you know me, you know that I've been waiting for this frame for a LONG time. Now that it's finally here, I still find myself casting sidelong glances at it from time to time, mentally noting YES IT'S FINALLY HERE. And if you know me, you know that many folks have started asking "Well, why haven't you built it up yet?" Legitimate question...seems there are several glitches or hurdles blocking progress in that direction. First is the obvious one:TIME. Second is that there's a small problem with the frame's alignment that I'd like to have corrected, and well a certain local framebuilder seems to have forgotten to return my call. It seems it's always one thing or another. I was going to disassemble my Fuji and use those parts on this frame...but I've ended up buying a different wheelset, and I've just realized that I've (still) got enough spare parts that I could actually get the Kogswell running without taking the other bike apart. That'd bring me (back) up to six bikes, one more than I've got room to store them, and my wife is none too happy at that prospect. The deal in getting this frame in the first place, you see, was that I promised her that the total number of visible bikes wouldn't change (the Fuji frame was to get stashed in the attic). Now I'm thinking that, well, the Fuji overall is such a nicely dialed-in package that it'd be a shame to wreck it unless/until I'm certain I've got the Kogswell functioning well enough as its replacement. And also, it'd be helpful to have the Fuji around as I'm building up the Kogswell to take position measurements off of so I could properly set up the new bars/stem/saddle. Et cetera...there are a few other rationalizations I could make, of course. At any rate, I have enough spare parts that I could build this bike up...it wouldn't be my ideal build, but it'd function: an old set of Avid Shorty 4 cantis, some thrashed Ultegra brake levers, 9spd barcons, a DX front derailler and hella old XT rear, a 9spd 11-32 cassette I got but never used, some polished Shimano Exage cranks with 24/36/46 rings -- and I just discovered that I also have the required 113mm cartridge BB in the parts bin, too. I'd use a random spare saddle for now, and I've got a set of VERY thrashed 535 SPD pedals that'd work.

The only thing I DON'T have is a seatpost. a silver, 27.2mm seatpost! (I do, however, have a bid into an Ebay auction for an appropriate post. The auction ends 3 days from now...so we'll see!)

Yesterday I walked up the street, hoping to visit Box Dog Bicycles and rummage through their used parts stash...but it turns out that they're closed for "emergency floor repairs"! UH-OH. There's another hurdle. Sheesh.

Hmm...maybe tomorrow that framebuilder will call me back. Maybe.