Thursday, June 30, 2011

Velomobiles - The only way to cruise.

Here is a great video as linked on the great forum. It features some great footage of a guy in a Mango Sport velomobile. Watching this video makes you realize just how awesome fast they are.


Monday, June 27, 2011

WHY Ride? WHY Cycle Oregon?

On the Cycle Oregon forum, some great questions were asked. Thought I would share...

Why do you ride?

I ride for health, but FIRST I ride for FUN. When on a ride I am taking the time to enjoy 100% the sights and experience of the environment from the recumbent position. There is nothing better. I ride fast and slow, but always for the FUN of it. I train hard some of the time while riding, but I have traded the "hardcore riding" for "fun riding" and keep my fitness level high via CrossFit. I suffer there so on the bike I can enjoy ALL of the time I have, which is never enough. When I encounter people who seem to have a "need" to ride at 110% pace 110% of the time, and treat every single ride as some kind of personal TDF and every rider in front of them whatever the age/gender/ability as a rabbit to chase down and smoke I just shake my head. Maybe thats one way to enjoy riding but for me that is just a waste of energy.

Plus, how can you NOT have fun on a rolling lounge chair????

Why go on cycle oregon?

Cycle Oregon is the ultimate fun on a bike. Period. Places I have seen from my bikes when on Cycle Oregon I will not/would not EVER see from a car. I just would never feel like driving to those places.

What is your favorite part?

The cruising each and every day and just realizing that 2000+ others are out there having FUN riding! It is hard for me to pick a favorite part... If I had to pick a "favorite day" for me it would be the 2007 loop up to and around around Crater Lake. Perfect weather. Awesome sights. It was a very challenging ride for me but finishing that loop brought tears to my eyes it was so awesome.

Could you have appreciated it 10 years ago?

I only wish I could have been turned on to Cycle Oregon 10 years ago... but 5 will suffice. :)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

GT3 gets the wood treatment!

The allure of wood is strong. I don't know what it is - I just love the look of these beauties, so the GT3 is now sporting a set of Woody's Custom Cycling Fenders to keep the road ick off. Check it:

As with the QNT and the B1, the fenders do what they are supposed to and look cool in the process. The front fenders are mounted to the stock Greenspeed mounts, and the entire setup weighs a smidgen less than the old plastic fenders.

Like the delicious icing on the scrumptious cake - Woody's fit the bill!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Review: Crank Brothers Acid Pedals

I have been using Crank Brothers eggbeater pedals for a handful of years now. Prior to that I used Eggbeater Candy pedals on all of my recumbents.

I originally ditched the Candy pedals due to an inability to get that "instant unclip" on my two-wheel recumbents. A few super steep climbs I did the very sad "stall and fall" as I was unable to unclip in time. Sigh... the issue was my show tread catching on the surround part of the pedal. Well, that and inexperience. Either way, switching to regular eggbeaters caused that problem to go away. But after several years on the minimalist eggbeaters I have noticed that on the really long and steep sections I get a bit of pain in the bottom of my foot. Since I do not ride uber-stiff CF soled road shoes, I decided to get something that would provide a bit more support.

Good lookin' pedals!

Enter the Crank Brothers Acids  2 pedals. It was a decision between the new Candy, Acids, and Mallets. Seeing them in person, the new Candy pedals are really really nice. The Mallets looked huge to me. Larger than even good size BMX platforms. The Acids fell somewhere in-between. As a bonus, they came in red that was a perfect match for the QNT. Sweet bling!

The pedals provide a great amount of support for my shoe. The first ride where I hit any incline made this quite obvious to me. I was able to put a bit more power down without "feeling" the pedal at the bottom of my foot. The clip in and release action is not as clean as the plain eggbeaters, but this is really a non issue on the trike. No stalling. No falling.

Acids: FSM approved!

How about riding without clipless shoes? I tried this, and the Acids really do not fit this use very well. Too slippery and not enough "real estate" for use with the ordinary tennis shoes. Maybe if going down the block... but on a trike it is best to have your feet clipped in anyway to avoid the dreaded "leg suck" should your foot slip off. Maybe Mallets would be better for the non-clip use.

So if you are looking for a bit more support for your feet but not a pedal that looks like a massive fly swatter attached to your cranks, the Acids are worth a try, especially if you already are a fan of the CB eggbeaters!


Had a chance to get out both the rides today. Yes! Sure do look like a happy couple...

Friday, June 10, 2011

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Less Than 100 Days... Cycle Oregon Week Ride (2011)

Much like last year, there seems to be a change in the space - time continuum when the timer ticks below 100 days for Cycle Oregon. As I type this tonight we are at 93 days. If it is to be like all of the previous years, these last 90 days are going to rip by and soon we will be "going coastal" on CO 2011!

Just one of the many sites to be had via bike (trike) - in less than 100 days

The image above was posted via the Cycle Oregon Facebook page, and is actually taken from one of the lunch stops. Well, I'll say that it looks like a killer place to have lunch with 2,200 of your great cycling friends if you ask me!

This begs the question - with less than 100 days to go, how is the training going? Riding the trike, I have not been into much mileage riding so far this year, but I am not too worried about it. Comfort is not an issue. Endurance? Maybe - but with scenes like that above to feed off of there could be an unlimited source of adrenaline just from the awesome Oregon views alone. After a few recent local training rides the legs are feeling the itch for those awesome open and quiet Oregon country roads.

Now is the time that you should be hitting some climbs. If you are going on this ride, take a minute to download the route profiles from the CO site and check them out. The detailed full maps are not out yet, but the profiles look to be complete. There will be some hairy steep sections this year - though no super long prolonged climbs. Still, when the map shows sections of 11% grade or more - and YES there will be short burst sections well over 11% - it is a wise move to find a hill of a similar grade and ride it. Ride it over and over and over to see how it feels. You will know right quick if you need to begin a leg strengthening regimen, shave some weight (off the bike or the engine), order up a triple (chainring not cheeseburger), or any combination of the above. 

How about your steed? Getting it dialed in I hope. For the diamond frame riders out there getting that seat time in is key. Gotta be "broken" in down there I guess.... :)

Fenders? Ill be sporting mine this year, we will be on the Oregon coast after all. 

Locked and loaded in CO 2011 dress

How about camp arrangements? Tent? Sleeping pads? Cot? 

With days counting down into the double digits time will start to pick up pace. I can already imagine myself taking in the views in person - having ridden there in the greatest cycling ride on Earth!

Ticket a Guy "Not Riding In Bike Lane?"

Here is a great video posted on youtube where a guy gets a ticket for "not riding in the bike lane." He decides to demonstrate with hilarious results why the bike lane is not always the safest place to ride.

Clearly the cop is a douche who does not know the law:

§ 1234. Riding on roadways, shoulders, bicycle or in-line skates lanes and bicycle or in-line skates paths.

(a) Upon all roadways, any bicycle or in-line skates shall be driven either on a usable bicycle or in-line skates lane or, if a usable bicycle or in-line skates lane has not been provided, near the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway or upon a usable right-hand shoulder in such a manner as to prevent undue interference with the flow of traffic except when preparing for a left turn or when reasonably necessary to avoid conditions that would make it unsafe to continue along near the right-hand curb or edge. Conditions to be taken into consideration include, but are not limited to, fixed or moving objects, vehicles, bicycles, in-line skates, pedestrians, animals, surface hazards or traffic lanes too narrow for a bicycle or person on in-line skates and a vehicle to travel safely side-by-side within the lane.