Category Archives: photography
These frames. These freaking frames. Godzilla doesn’t have a chance against Moth Attack. With a little help from Black Magic Paint, Megan Dean’s new ‘cross team’s bikes are some of the most beautiful team bikes I’ve had the pleasure of documenting. We saw a frameset at the Portland Bike and Beer Festival, but this is the first complete I’ve seen in person and I’m glad it’s Erica Schwanke‘s! She’s a super rad woman and has been enjoying racing ‘cross in the Bay Area this season on this bike.
I caught up with Erica last week in Los Angeles, prior to the UCI race in Long Beach and stole her bike for a few minutes for photos. I love seeing people’s reactions to custom bikes like this! Enjoy…
The 2015 Single Speed Cyclocross World Championships in Victoria
Words by Dylan VanWeelden, photos by Dylan VanWeelden and Ryan Richardson
The Single Speed Cyclocross World Championships (SSCXWC) was created in the vision of a giant cultural rubber band snapping in the face of the serious UCI cross racing scene. Trainers, embrocation and skinsuits are nowhere to be found at SSCXWC. The barrier height rule was tossed to the birds and replaced with barriers hosting flames intended to burn your shins. For those that have witnessed the spectacle you know of the past Tequilla Shortcuts, Foam Pit, Thunderdome, Junk Yard Jumps and endless Feats of Strength.
The ninth edition of the dumbest race known to Neanderthals just came down on the polite town of Victoria, BC. Racers follow no rules and live on their own regard, dressed to the nines and leaving sobriety at the door. The only rule is each winner must get a tattoo adorning the SSCXWC theme. This year Mical Dyck and Adam Craig took home the honors with world champion tattoos and golden speedos.
The Portland Collective brought in a dowry of joints as a sacrificial lamb to the riders in hopes to bring it back to PDX for the ten year anniversary. At the finish line racers were rewarded with doobies and the crowd burst into a cloud of smoke. Apparently everyone got so stoned they forgot what was going on and Portland won the bid. Lesson learned is bribes always work.
We sent our partners in crime out to try and stay sober enough to document the debauchery. Here’s a collection of images from eyes of Dylan VanWeelden and Ryan Richardson. Follow more shenanigans on Instagram @dylanvanweelden and @singletrack_media_works.
By utilizing the Exposure platform, collapsable fender company Ass Savers has started a new platform for sharing photos, beginning with the Red Hook Crit Milano. Head on over to the Ass Savers Journal for the photos and story.
Golden Saddle Rides: A Carbon Fiber Calfee Tandem Project
Words by Thomas “Woody” Wood, photos by John Watson
An old friend and accomplice in many of past ventures into the cycling world approached me a couple of months ago about a rather “large” project he was embarking on. At the time he was getting ready for another crack at a national championship on the velodrome. His schedule had cleared up after a very successful run of coaching our women’s olympic track cycling team to two silver medals in London. With the mind a little more free to roam, and a very fast wife to be, he wanted to do a full custom Calfee tandem. Ben had already chosen Calfee for its reputation and known ability to deliver a quality product that would meet his race ready standards. The bike had to be versatile. He wanted it to be a time trial bike and a road race bike. With the intention of racing both at Masters “old man” National Championships next year.
We both started doing some research on parts for the bike. He wanted lightweight and strong. Holding to the old aphorism by Keith Bontrager “light. strong. cheap. Pick two”. We had our work cut out for us. First was the drivetrain. Gates Belt drive and Shimano Ultegra DI2 would be a solid performer. Since the bike is a standard threaded english BB with and eccentric in the captain’s chair. Finding a modern light carbon crankset was a bit of a chore. Luckily Calfee had a couple sets of FSA SLK-SL cranks left and we were set in that department.
A big bike like a tandem requires good brakes. We went with Shimano road hydraulic disk. Once I was able to source a rear 203 IS disk adapter we were good to go. Since they are running an Enve road disc fork in front most of the braking power will have to come from the rear. Hence the larger rear disc.
Next was the cockpit. They were looking for versatility with the bar setup. So they went with the 3T Zefiro LTD option, It has a removable aero extension for use both as a TT bar and a straight road bar. And since we were using DI2 you can just unplug the climbing shifter that will be glued to the extension (the photo shows zipties), making for a quick and easy change.
Seatposts are FSA K-Force Light with internal battery holders.
For wheels we wanted durable. We have had a lot of success with the H+SON Archetype rims laced to DT Swiss 240s. The bike is thru axle and 142mm in the rear. A simple way to stiffen up the bike just a little.
All said and done this tandem is one hell of a machine. I took a couple of laps around the block on it and I must say it was one snappy bike. Out of the saddle accelerations were controlled and rather fun!
Cheers to the fun projects!
Follow Woody on Instagram and visit Golden Saddle Cyclery in Silverlake, Los Angeles.
First Time’s a Charm at the Steamboat Ralleye
Photos by Ian Hylands and Kyle Kelley words by Kyle Kelley
A few months ago James Scriven from Niner Bikes reached out and asked me to go on a bike ride with him. I agreed as soon as he asked and only afterwards began to understand what I had signed up for. As the details trickled in I found out that I wouldn’t be riding my own bike, but instead would be on a Special Edition Niner RLT. The bike would be auctioned off after the ride to benefit the International Mountain Bike Association. I wouldn’t even be using my own gear. The bike would be equipped with Blackburn bags, Big Agnes was providing the camping gear and Kitsbow even made a special pair of custom jean shorts for me to wear. Side note: my signature model can be expected to appear sometime in the year 2020. (more…)
The Travelin’ Man’s Firefly!
Photos and words by Kyle Kelley
Yo! What time the plane leaving?
I met Nick at LA River Camp Coffee a few months back. He was traveling through California on a true cyclist’s holiday, riding anything and everything that the state had to offer. While in LA Nick was staying at another cyclist’s Airbnb, which is how he heard about River Camp Coffee. I have never used Airbnb personally, but if I do, this sounds like the way to go. Nick had access to a local’s endless knowledge of events, rides and the best local bike shop to have a beer! Long story short, Nick knows what he’s doing when it comes to travel and I don’t just mean in the way of booking accommodations. He applied his knowledge to building his ultimate travel bike, too.
Nick’s base was a stainless steel Firefly road bike with S&S Couplers. He chose stainless steel because of the coating that naturally forms when the chromium in the steel mingles with the oxygen in the atmosphere. The passive film protects the stainless from rust and corrosion without the necessity for paint. A smart choice in my book because traveling with a painted bike almost always ends poorly. Nick also chose to use as many Ti and alloy parts as possible because of their ability to take a beating and hide scratches from afar. Even though this bike was purpose built, in no way did Nick skimp on any of the components. From the cult classic Campy gruppo to the skewers used with the White Industries wheelset, this bike is dialed.
Any travel bike is going to get beaten up, but Nick has planned ahead and I imagine his bike will look almost exactly same when we meet again. I’m just hoping it’s not in Los Angeles. I’d prefer for it to be at Shifter Bikes, where this bike was built, while I’m on my own holiday staying at a cyclist’s Airbnb in Melbourne!
Follow Kyle on Instagram.
Brooke is an experienced cyclist and when the time came to order a custom ‘cross bike for not only racing but everyday dirt riding in San Francisco, she contacted Aaron and his team at Mosaic Cycles to get her fit on a custom XT1 disc ‘cross.
You see, for someone with Brooke’s proportions, it’s hard to fit on a stock bike from many of the big-named companies, so a custom bike which would be tailored to her body seemed like an obvious choice. She didn’t just want to fit on a bike, she wanted the bike to fit her. The end result was a confidence inspiring feel without toe overlap and enough standover to make unexpected dismounts easy. Key build details are the SRAM Red 165mm cranks (since Force CX1 doesn’t come in that length, that new and fancy TRP thru-axle ‘cross fork and some great I9 to Pacenti wheels.
When Brooke and her friend Tessa were in Los Angeles for a wedding, I met up with them to go on a quick ride and couldn’t resist documenting this bike, but bringing my camera along for a little sunset ride…
Photos by Marc McShane
A reader sent this along and I am completely floored about how beautiful this Flickr stream is. If you’ve got the itch to hop on a tour this spring, check out Marc McShane’s photography!
Look. I’m not a super über tech geek. I don’t really care about stiffness or compliance in terms of data or coefficients but I do like riding bikes and developing stories about them, in terms of my personal experiences. When Argonaut and Chris King asked if I wanted to come along for a very informal launch of a new bottom bracket standard, I had a few questions:
-Do we need another BB standard?
-Where is this launch?
-Will there be booze?
Two out of the three answers met my standards, so I agreed. (more…)
Back in 2012, photographer Nick Czerula visited frame builder Richard Sachs and photographed him and his work space. It wasn’t until recently that his work was reformated to fit a long-form narrative. Head over to see all of Nick’s words and photos!