With the pandemic causing severe delays and stock shortages, building up a new bike in 2020 and into 2021 is proving to be quite the ordeal. Erik is a local here in Santa Fe and a customer at Sincere Cycles. I first rode with him a few years back when we shuttled Winsor while I was visiting. At the time, he had a Santa Cruz Chameleon, which proved to be a capable ally in our mountains. Jump forward a few years and Erik was looking for a new bike. The aforementioned delays due to the pandemic had him looking at other options outside of the brands offering titanium frame models. He had his sights set on a custom titanium hardtail from Waltly in China…
The Crust Florida Man: A Leo Rodgers Pro Model
We love hosting and supporting the fruits of our good friends’ labor. Crust Bikes and Leo Rodgers have been working on a pro model for Leo, dubbed the “Florida Man.” This singlespeed frame can be built as a singlespeed freewheel, a coaster brake, or a straight-up fixed gear off-road machine. Check out all the details below, including how you can win one of these frames!
Dillen from Baphomet Bicycles’ Unintended Singlespeed Gravel Bike
As someone who documents all sorts of framebuilder creations, it’s always this sort of bike that gets me every time. There’s something really wonderful about a builder’s personal bike, especially when it’s a byproduct of their own journey as a constructeur. Flashback to last month and the Baphomet Bicycles Shop Visit. I spent the day watching Dillen work, discussing his story – which if you’re just now joining us I suggest you read – and eventually, I began documenting some of the bikes had had in his shop. We saw the “Shreddy Rando” bike, which was a crowd favorite with its pristine presentation, chrome bits, and as we say “dialed” build. Now it’s time for the really good stuff. Bikes with beausage and a story will always tug at my heartstrings and this one is no different.
Locke and His Esker Cycles Hayduke Singlespeed 29er
George Hayduke. The fictional anti-hero created by the protector of the Western ‘wilderness’, Ed Abbey. While much of Abbey’s political pennings haven’t aged well, he still brought awareness to the American West unsurpassed by any other author of that time. Abbey’s fictional masterpiece, the Monkey Wrench Gang, is a must-read for any lover of the Four Corners and Canyon Country. In it, a ragtag group of desert rats embarks on a journey to dismantle the corporate machines threatening the cherished ecosystems found on the Colorado Plateau. The term “monkeywrenching” and even “eco-terrorist” stemmed from this book as its characters threw a literal wrench in the spokes of the all-consuming corporate machine.
Esker Cycles’ predecessor brand, Advocate Cycles, used the “Earth First” fist on their headtubes and their flagship bike was the Hayduke. When the brand became Esker, they kept the Hayduke model and its signature monkey wrench decals.
Locke reviewed a Hayduke a few years ago. You can read that review in our archives but when he swung through Santa Fe on a recent jaunt, I linked up with him and shot his own personal singlespeed 29er build. Read on for more…
From DUST to Ashes… Fixed Gear Drag Racing on the Verneuk Mud Flat in South Africa
You know how a hashtag can fuck you? Well maybe not, but a few years ago my good friend Nic and I had this idea … we’d always been intrigued by the pans – or mud flats – of the Northern Cape here in South Africa. At the time we were really getting into riding fixed gear bikes and one day it hit us – let’s take our fixed gear bikes onto the pan! Why not? Surreal landscapes, super smooth surfaces good enough for world speed records! Sounds like a good adventure right? We did some research and found out that that year there was a South African Speedweek planned in September 2014 on the Hakskeenpan, coinciding with the launch of a planned rocket-propelled car land speed record attempt – the Bloodhound SSC. We decided to travel up in Nic’s old 1963 Porsche 356 – it seemed appropriate. Bikes on the roof, gear in the back.
Got an Otso Frame That You Want to Run Singlespeed? Check This Out
If you have an Otso frame that is begging to be run as a singlespeed, then look no further. Wolf Tooth and Otso are within the same umbrella company, so it was easy for the two brands to work together on tricked out hardware kits to convert their popular frames. These kits are available in post and flat mounts, with instructions on Otso’s blog. Both the flat-mount and post-mount kits are $94.95 and shipping now from Otso.
Readers’ Rides: DangerPubes
Wow. We’ve featured the work of the cycling industry’s crystal ball-gazing, doodle extraordinaire before but oddly enough, none of his other cycle-inventions felt as practical as this project does… Read on below for the full scoop on this creation from the mind of Bicycle Pubes with words by Dr. Pubey himself.
Some of John’s Favorite Products from 2020
If 2020 brought anything, it was an unexpected amount of time spent locally and at home. It feels like ages ago that we were spending seven months of the year on the road, traveling to events, races, and bike rides throughout the American West living out of our truck, grinding our morning coffee and cooking dinner under the stars. While it was and is a huge downer to be stuck at home with the Nation’s strictest Covid-19 restrictions, I cannot deny how much fun we had sticking to a radius close to our new home in the Land of Enchantment. While we didn’t do any month-long road trips, quick weekend jaunts provided plenty of inspiration as we familiarized ourselves with this beautiful state we now call home.
This year, a handful of products made my life easier in one way or another. Check out a quick list of some of my personal favorite products I used this year.
Donate to ActBlue and Win a Crust Lightning Bolt Breakaway
Crust Bikes and RonsBikes.com have a fundraising raffle going on to benefit families separated and detained at the Southern Border. All you have to do is donate what you can to ActBlue and email your receipt to RonsBikesRaffle@gmail.com to enter the raffle.
This raffle will end at 7pm EST on December 7th.
@velocityusa @paulcomponent @whiteind @ultradynamico and @brooksengland
for pitching in parts for the build.
Crust Bikes: Breakaway Single Speed Lightning Bolt
To commemorate the release of their Breakaway Single Speed Lightning Bolt frames, Crust Bikes made this video showcasing the bike and its details.
Readers’ Rides: Brad’s UK-Built Curtis S1 SSMTB
Our International Singlespeed Day post brought out some real gems, including Brad‘s Curtis S1 singlespeed MTB. This one’s a real beaut and Brad supplied a great rundown on the bike’s inception, so read on below for the full report!
A Sunset Ride to Celebrate International Singlespeed Day
This week is going to be a stressful one and rather than stew indoors, listening to the news, last night I hollered at Bailey to see if he wanted to commemorate International Singlespeed Day on our neighborhood trails…
From Henceforth: November 2nd Shall Be International Singlespeed Day
Intro by California Travis:
Every Monday at 11 am, the entire PAUL Component shop staff has an “All-Hands” meeting to catch up on any changes or shop news or projects. For the last few months, this has been in the backyard with masks and everybody yelling across the yard to each other. It’s weird but no weirder than our usual shop vibes. Last Monday, Paul announced that November 2nd is International Singlespeed Day. We all looked at him like “Huh? Says who?” Then he said it was him and his friend Amanda’s birthday that day, and it was Amanda’s idea, and why the hell not?
Having never created an International Holiday before, I wasn’t quite sure what to do, so I got on the phone with a bunch of framebuilders and friends and said “Hey. It’s Paul’s birthday on November 2nd, and he wants everybody to ride singlespeeds. You down?” And of course, everybody said yes, I mean what the hell else are you going to do right now? So how do you join us? It’s pretty simple really, go for a ride on your singlespeed, wherever you live, post a photo on Instagram and hashtag it #InternationalSinglespeedDay, and wish Paul and Amanda a happy birthday if you want. Don’t have a singlespeed bike? Zip tie your shifters, or take the battery off your derailleur, maybe? Get creative, there are no rules!
Post your singlespeed bikes up in the comments too.
We asked Paul what the big deal is and this is what he wrote… Read on below!
MASH SF: 2021 Steel Tracklocross Frames
Remember cyclocross racing? Remember its sibling tracklocross and all those excellent galleries from the Bay Area series? Well, Mash SF has something for you to consider if you’re hoping to start racing tracklocross. Their 2021 frames all got a refresh, with new paint designs, and Mash even hinted at their new Phil Wood collaboration on their blog, so head on over to see all the details.
The Radavist 2020 Calendar: September
This is the ninth layout of the Radavist 2020 Calendar, entitled “Autumnal Descent” shot with a Leica M10 and 50mm f1.4 Summilux lens in the Santa Fe National Forest.
“There’s no denying it. The days are getting shorter, the weather is changing. The Autumn equinox is right around the corner”
For a high-res JPG, suitable for print and desktop wallpaper*, right-click and save link as – The Radavist 2020 – September. Please, this photo is for personal use only!
(*set background to white and center for optimal coverage)
Keland Hawks Shreds His Commuter Bike in Bellingham
Tannus Armour put out this video of all-around shredder Keland Hawks giving his local trails a go on his singlespeed commuter bike.
John’s Retrotec As a Singlespeed 27.5+ Using the Phil Wood Eccentric BB
It had been years since I’ve ridden singlespeed and to be honest, I was pretty reluctant to do so here in Santa Fe. We’ve been in town for about two months now and it’s taken a while to get used to the elevation. Our house is at 6,800′ and the local trails start around 7,000′, shooting up to 12,000′. It’s a lot to take in but for the more flowy cross-country trails, I felt like I could get away with one gear and I knew just the bike for it!
My Retrotec is one of those “forever” machines. I could never sell it as it feels like it’s a part of this website. Plus, the maker – Mr. Curtis Inglis – is just such a stand up guy. When you ride a Retrotec, you put a smile on Curtis’ face and if you’ve ever met the guy, you know that’s well worth it!
Bailey and His Custom Moné Bikes Singlespeed 29er Touring Bike
A few years back in 2018, I shot Bailey’s Salsa Woodsmoke, just before he took off on the Tour Divide. The bike was dialed at the time, with all the kinks worked out and he pedaled it from Canada to Mexico. Now here we are, two years later, Bailey has a shop in Santa Fe called Sincere Cycles and one of the brands he carries is Moné Bikes, based out of Silver City. As soon as he opened his shop, he ordered a custom Moné to once again take on the Tour Divide.