Category Archives: Well Used
I catch a lot of flack for saying things like “these are the best brakes” and “I’ll never ride another set of brakes again”. Rightfully so. What I’ve learned in the past is to say things like “these brakes impressed me, both in design and stopping power” and “modulation is king!”
Writing product reviews ain’t easy, especially when a company gives you their product to test out, which is not the case here. I bought these brakes because I believe in supporting the US-manufacturing economy.
EE Cycleworks is a small shop, that produces a handful of components, all of which are incredibly well-designed – from an aesthetics standing – and from what I can tell so far, are easy to service.
Check out more below!
This fall, I’ve embraced the hue of the season. Hunter, or safety orange and two brands have done the same: Giro and Rapha, each in their own unique way. A wise man once told me that a *down vest, or jacket could be the difference between an enjoyable ride and an utterly miserable death march.
Check out more below!
“IT IS FORBIDDEN TO FORBID!”
It’s hard to believe that this is the typical Austin “fall riding” wear. Short sleeve jersey and bibs. Maybe arm warmers. Out of all my road-cycling kits, for some reason I keep coming back to this combo: the Tenspeed Hero Stealth Club Jersey and the Team Dream ENDO Compression bibs.
Both fit exceptionally well and are classic additions to anyone’s collection. In fact, I’m a huge fan of everything Tenspeed Hero is doing but I had never owned one of their jerseys before. They’re made in Italy, from tech fabrics and the fit is pretty spot on. I haven’t owned a club-fit jersey (size large) in over a year, so I was surprised at how the chest in particular felt a little more roomy than my tradition size large race fit kits.
What can I say? I don’t have to do posts like this but I’ve been really digging this jersey!
For the past two days, I’ve been preparing to head back down to Australia for a few weeks. Lauren is there, working again and so I get to spend some more time with my bestest mates. As I was packing this morning, I noticed some color-coordination happening and thought I’d take a minute to shoot these two photos.
These are all products I use and wear on a daily basis. With all the “what kind of _____ is that?” I experience, let me break it down:
Manual for Speed shirt
Rapha Brevet Gillet
Rapha Winter City Riding Merino Socks
Giro Atmos helmet
Giro Limited Empire MTB Shoe
Topo Designs Mountain Shorts
Topo Designs Nesting Pouches
I won’t even begin to lay out all the orange and camo gear I have…
I think it’s safe to say that the whole camo thing is at its prime so simply slapping an ambiguous pattern on a cycling kit, or apparel isn’t going to cut it. There has to be something unique, or even vernacular about the presentation. Enter the Fyxomatosis “Predator” cycling kit.
Disruptive Pattern Camouflage Uniform, or Auscam was developed in the 70′s and 80′s. Used by the Australian Defence Force, Auscam is very distinctly Australian. As Australian as meat pies and yes, as Australian as Fyxo himself.
Andy sent me one of these kits a few weeks back, which I subsequently shredded (literally) on the first MTB ride. Since Andy still owes me $999.99 from a bet, I told him I’d clear his debt if he sent me another one and here it is.
The kit itself is made from really nice fabric and stuff. The fabric is as Italian as a cannoli stain on an Armani suit, uses YKK zippers, J-TECK dies for crisp sublimation, UV protection SPF 25+ and has passed extensive PiNP x FYXO testing in only the finest lab conditions (i.e. the wood).
While the US dollar is stronger than the AUS, scoop one up at FYXO… and yes, this stuff will make you a god damned sexual Tyrannosaurus, just like me.
See more photos in the Gallery and all the fit information, plus detail photos you need at FYXO.
When Speedvagen first announced the Integrated stems earlier this year, people were split like a cable yoke. Some liked it, some hated it but I loved mine. I loved it so much that I paid Speedvagen to paint me a one-off (at the time) black on black Integrated stem for my Geekhouse.
Turns out, black on black looks great and so now, Speedvagen is offering this murderously-sleek stem in their web shop for $350.
Now, considering ENVE sells these stems for $280, I think that’s a fair price for internal cable routing and a sick in-house Vanilla paint job.
Need a review of the stem? Check out more below.
Photo by Kevin Edward Brown of Yonder Journal
I know I’ve already talked a lot about this bike, but I still can’t get over how much fun the State of Jefferson Brovet was last month. One of the reasons it was enjoyable was because of the equipment I used. There’s a lot to be said about the traditional randonneur events, all of which will not be discussed here. This is more a reflection on a ride that could have been hell for me, had I not planned accordingly.
After bonking and consequently pulling out of the second Brovet, due to a lack of adequate planning, I wasn’t going to let that happen on the latest ride. The stats were heavy. 250 ish miles and around 20,000′ in a day and a half was a big undertaking, especially with the weather fluctuations that you experience in California altitudes.
Check out more below.
Photos by Sean Murphy
As one of the first people to test out the new cycling gear from Mission Workshop, I greeted it with as much apprehension as enthusiasm. Surely, there were already a lot of options for urban cycling gear out there but were these new pieces strictly for cycling?
Not at all. In fact, while I enjoyed riding in the clothes, I didn’t feel like there was anything in particular that made it cycling-specific and that’s a good thing. The side utility pocket has everyday applications and the cut certainly fits on the bike. In the end, this is made in the USA, high-tech, high-quality clothing from a company that is no stranger to those traits.
If you need scientific data to support tire purchasing, you need not continue reading. Just look at the pretty photos and move on. This is not a controlled test on rolling resistance, aerodynamics or puncture protection. I don’t do that kind of product review. What I do is actually use something until I feel like I can sign off on its quality, before I choose to write anything.
Let’s look at this tire’s history before we go any further. Bruce Gordon was arguably one of the first builders in the USA to support “gravel grinding”. His bikes were straight-forward, utilitarian beasts that sometimes were painted like an 80′s hotrod, or even adorned with animal print. They are wild. In fact, one of the first BG bikes I ever saw was a flat bar cross bike, with these tires and tiger stripes that was well before any 29′r hit the market. A lot of bikes back in the 80′s couldn’t even fit these tires. There weren’t exactly stock framesets that fit a 700c x 43c wheel, so these stood out from other offerings of the time.
Bruce’s Rock N Road tires are iconic, much like his bikes. Originally designed by Joe Murray, a well-known figure in the MTB community. These 43mm (1.72″) tires were designed to be high-volume, fast rolling and rip through gravel like I rip through a Frito Pie. Are they slow on the road? Of course. They have decent tread. Are they good for loose and sandy conditions? Mostly, yes. They move as fast as you pedal them.
The Rock N Road tire is one that’s at home on chip seal, paved, gravel, rock, sand and just about everything else you can throw at it on a ride. It’ll handle great at 60psi on asphalt and excel at 40psi in gravel. I had a great time ripping through the cedar-topped trails here in Austin, as well as a few gravel roads and even rocky terrain. All save for one flat (snake bite in a rock garden), I’ve yet to have any issues. Let me add however that if all you do is ride sealed roads on your rig, I would go for something else, mostly because you’ll probably wear through the tread too fast.
Puncture protection? It’s not thorn season here in Austin, so I’ve yet to tackle anything like that but I’d say they’re pretty resilient to the normal road and trail debris. Some tire liners would help and I read somewhere that people have been successful at running these on a tubeless wheel. If anyone has insight to that, share in the comments!
If you want a big, fat tire for your cross, touring or even MTB with 700c or 29′r wheels, look no further. $50 a piece is a great deal for anything coming out of the Panaracer facilities in Japan I might add! For the weight-conscious, they’re 540g each. One major note. They’re BIG and wouldn’t come close to fitting on my cross bike, so MAKE SURE YOU HAVE CLEARANCE!
Pick up a pair at Bruce Gordon’s online shop in skinwall or blackwall.
I know I’ve plugged the Giro Privateer shoes numerous times on the site before and yet I continue to get emails from people asking what shoes I wear on my cross and mountain bike. These days, I travel exclusively with my Mudville cross bike. For road rides, I bring Jack Brown tires, for dirt, I bring Grifos. Spending serious saddle time in shoes will either make or break your relationship with them but spending a lot of time on the road in MTB shoes is sure to test their comfort.
In dirt, you tend to move around a lot more, stop, hike and the time you spend actually sitting and climbing is limited. At least in my experience anyway. Especially when I come to California, I find myself climbing mountains on my cross bike, in these shoes. People often comment on how they hate riding road in mountain shoes and I used to hate it as well but then I got the Giro Privateers. I’ve been amazed at how comfortable they are, at such an affordable pricepoint. They also come in HV, or “high volume” for wider feet.
This isn’t a “paid advert”, this is just me sharing with you something that I use a lot more than I anticipated…