Tuesday, February 23, 2010

It's not really the thought that counts.

"Its the thought that counts", is an old saying we apply to gifts, most notably to those gifts which have failed miserably. That being said it is apparent some gifts are better than others. Some people know you (and your obsessions) better than others. So when you get an extraordinarily awesome gift, all you can say is "thanks Mom, I love you too."

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Math and Metal

Anyone that has ever done any competitive cycling will somewhere be harboring a small amount of weight or tech weeniness. Lighter is often better, and techier is too (provided someone else has tested it and given it the thumbs up first). Of course the easiest way to make something lighter is to use power tools to take away some of the thing, hopefully only the parts that you wouldn’t be using anyway. This line of thinking tends to justify odd actions at times, like taking a perfectly good bicycle rim and drilling holes in it. In the case of my rim I am using the bead edges to hold the tire and the holes to keep the spokes in place. All the rest of that big rim is just garbage I don’t need, right? So I have set about removing material from rims to make them lighter. Because more important than the fact that it is weight, it is actually rotating weight (and every cyclist knows that making rotation things lighter is even better than just plain old making things lighter). Sadly I have found that before I started drilling holes in my rims, perhaps I should have done the math. Although I was never a fan of calculus, geometry was always vaguely interesting, and I now realize some early up front work would have saved some regret. A lot of holes seems like a good idea. More holes seems like more weight savings. In reality, bigger holes equals more weight savings since there is an exponent involved in the area equation. Also since bigger holes means fewer holes, there is less work involved. Well, now I know.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Enter the Larry

(Disclosure notice: despite having arguably the sexiest Pugsley on the planet, Surly still hasn’t donated anything to my cause, see the quiver on the right for confirmation)

For awhile now I have wanted to write about Larry. Surly’s new tire offering may be a long time coming to some, but to me it came at the perfect time (or just about six weeks after I got Puggie together). While the Endomorph is an excellent rear tire, it is somewhat lacking as a front tire, most riders discover this the first time they try to corner hard and all four inches of rubber wash out in front of them. Larry solves that problem. I have been riding a Larry for two weeks or so now and I couldn’t be happier. Although slightly heavier than an Endomorph, Larry allows my bike to handle like I want around harsh corners. The front end tracks nicely and the rear slides to follow. Some have contemplated a dual Larry setup, and it may work for them, but I don’t think I’ll be trying it anytime soon.

If your winter riding doesn’t include high speed cornering, the Larry may be overkill, but if you have ever pushed your Pug (or Fatback or 9:ZERO:7) and had the front end slide out on you, Larry is where it’s at.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Congratulations to The Man

Congratulations to Jeff Oatley for winning his "rookie" Arrowhead 135 in the race's sixth running. Oatley finished the 133 mile course in roughly 16 hours and 20 minutes. Anchorage's Pete Basinger placed second.

In celebration I have finally gotten around to posting a new video created by Christapoleon featuring music by Jeff and Steve. I am not at all sure how the two are related, but there you are. Hope to see you out on the trails and byways of Fairbanks.