Bikes, and bike food, and bike races, etc.

Sadly, our favorite racer boy Alex Leonard moved away today. Off to Flagstaff to work his big boy job and put all them brains in his head to good use solving the worlds chemical engineering problems (and making dollars).

But, on the bright side, we got to build him a sweet bike before he left town:

This picture doesn't do it much justice.  It is a Traitor Ruben, sweet Columbus steel tubed disc brake cross frame, a commuter worthy build, 700x29c tires, and some killer fenders.  Nice touches to the frame like the seatstays gently curving downward to the dropouts, the disc brake cable routed through the chainstay, and the awesome blue paint.  Check it out some more...

Hopefully the new bike will help take the edge of the extreme sadness that Alex is surely experiencing now that he won't be able to see us on a daily basis anymore.

Moving on, can you think of the most disgusting thing you have ever eaten that was supposedly food?

Consider this a warning.  This energy bar is so bad tasting, that several of us literally could not swallow even one small bite.  A lot of words were thrown around when trying to describe the taste of this bar, none of which had anything to do with food (dog poop, bong water, bong water that somebody was smoking dog poop through).
 The problem seems to be the "magic root elixir" additive, which contains every single item found in your typical Whole Foods wellness aisle.  I can only assume that this is the healthiest single piece of food ever created, because you know, the worse it tastes the healthier it is.

Speaking of energy bars, who's going to do some racing this summer?  We are definitely in for the 24 Hours in the Enchanted Forest.  I'm planning on a 4 man team with my Dad, Alex, and his Dad, however I don't know if either of our Dad's have been told about the plan yet.
I think if Grover comes out this year he is going to need some ventilation mods, because last year got a bit hot...

Also, in case you haven't heard, the 12 Hours in the Wild West race has been rescheduled to May 12th.  While this is unfortunately the same date of the 12 Hours of Mesa Verde, that won't be a problem for most everybody since that race has a fairly low # of racer limit, and is full.  I personally won't be attending either event, as May 12th is my son Oliver's 2nd birthday, and apparently I'm supposed to be around for those sorts of things.

Basically, I'm excited for all of the Zia Rides events this summer, and if you like fun, then you should be excited too.

That is all. Thank you.

Unsolicited advice...

I have been noticing some trends this winter, and thought I'd pass on some advice, even though you didn't ask.

Firstly, Stans sealant doesn't seem to work as well when it's cold out. I'm going to pick a number, and say that around 40 deg. and below it looses some effectiveness.

Secondly, a whole lot of people who are mountain biking with tubeless tires (which should be everybody) haven't checked the sealant in their tires since the late summer.

Thirdly, you haven't had a flat in a while, a long while, on the trail because you are wise and ride tubeless. However, that spare tube that has been kicking around in your pack is now useless. It has worn through along the sides where it is folded and stuffed into a pocket next to your multi-tool (or worse yet, packed tightly in a under-the-saddle bag).  

Fourthly, that sweet new wheelset you just got has kind of deep rims, deep enough that your questionable spare tube's valve stem barely protrudes out of the valve hole, leaving not quite enough valve stem to be grabbed by that questionable hand pump that you keep in your pack.

Fifthly, that mini pump in your pack kind of sucks (see "Fourthly").

What do all these things add up to? A 20 something minute long flat change, in the dark, when it's barely above freezing out.

Danny learned not to get a bunch of sealant inside of your glove during an epic flat fix when it's freezing outside.  Apparently that makes for a cold hand.

Mike wasn't amused...

But everybody else was...

I learned that night riding shots with a camera phone don't work so well.  But Kip Maloneythemaloneboneyponey assured me that if I had a really expensive camera my pics would have still sucked, and then I would break my camera as well.

I also learned that I need to get my lights sorted out, as I started the ride with approximately 48,000 lumens of light power, and finished with just one lonely lumen of lighting.  My light was so dim it didn't even reach to the end of the visor on my helmet.

Thursday night was a great time. We ended up with a crew of 8 riders (and one, just one useable spare tube between us).  Hope to get out for another night ride soon, and I will definitely let everybody know when.

That's all, there's a box of wine and some bad television calling my name.  Yeah, I keep it pretty classy.  

Riding Thursday Night....

We will be getting out Thursday night this week after work for a little South foothills romp. Plan on being ready to ride at about 6:45pm at the Copper trailhead. Typical loops around the south foothills, nothing serious.

Afterwards we will be heading somewhere for a delicious beer or two, most likely one of our many fantastic local breweries.

Everyone is welcome to join, the more the merrier. The riding will be casual, the drinking however may get serious.

Hope to see you there!

Send me an email, get $5!

We are long past due to collect email addresses from customers for the purpose of sending out coupons, specials, etc.

So, it's time to start, and I'm going to give you $5. Here's how it goes:

1) Send us an email at
2) Include your name and phone number, and a sweet little message to us, or a picture of your cat, or something.
3) I am going to add you to our customer database (if you aren't already in it), along with a $5 credit on your account at the store.

Thats it.  Next time you are in, we will see the $5 credit, and ask if you want to use it. You don't even have to remember about it, or print a coupon, or anything. Bang, easiest $5 you will make today.

We won't bombard you with emails every day, or even every week. I'm thinking once or twice a month, and only when we have something pretty special to offer, or want to share info about an event or ride going on.

Thanks, and hope to hear from some of you!

Really important information about stuff and also things.

With a couple of weeks gone by and no bike riding worth speaking of, I've been a little absent from the ol' website lately. I suppose I could wow everybody with tales of playing with my kids, and my epic 2.5 mile commute to work, and re-organizing the tubes in the shop, and year-end inventory, but even that would be lies since Mike has been the one doing the organizing and the inventory.

Things are plugging right along in the shop, just about what you would expect January to be like.  Slow compared to summertime, but never quite slow enough to be able to put your feet up and not feel guilty about it.

The foothills have been muddy for-freaking-ever. Just this week it sounds like the the South Foothills are reasonable to ride, so I'm planning on heading out tomorrow morning, though there may be snow sneaking in tonight supposedly.

Anyway, Chuckyfresh decided to start up some blogging action. Bike oriented, I'm sure there will be plenty of useful knowledge shared over time about awesome rides, and awesome gear, etc.  Check it out...  (he even has a nice name for the blog)

I've been spending all my free internet-reading hours keeping up on the latest drama(s) involving Specialized.  If you haven't heard about the lawsuit against Volagi, here's a brief introduction:

There's fun stuff to be found over at Bike Rumor, Bike Snob NYC, and just about every other bike-centric blog out there. And I hear the Specialized Facebook page has been taking a pounding.  It seems maybe they've gone too far this time.

But, to play Devils advocate (and Spez just may be the Devil), yesterdays article on Bicycle Retailer makes Volagi's position seem quite a bit more iffy.  And, as mentioned in the Bike Rumor interview, the Volagi guys had prototypes at Interbike just 6 months after quitting Specialized, so obviously they were putting some pretty serious work into the company long before they quite their day jobs.  Coming from somebody who has started a company while trying to keep his current job (i.e. opening a bike shop while working at a bike shop), those guys had to know they were gonna get some shit eventually. There's just no way you can spend your time on the clock, at a notoriously hard-ass lawsuit happy company, putting together your own company that will go into competition with your current employer.

All that being said, I hope Specialized looses this one, because I just don't like them.

This lawsuit was right on the heels of a letter that Mike Sinyard (owner of Specialized) sent out to everybody in the world, crying about Amazon selling bike stuff, or something like that.  Here is the letter, if you haven't read it yet:

a link to that letter that the guy who owns Specialized wrote

Again, this has caused quite a bit of tongue flapping and jaw waving amongst the bike dork masses, but I think the best thing I have read so far is this:

a link to a random blog named CanooterValve, which is the guy from Speedgoat Cycles, and he lays down some knowledge

I just learned about this CanooterValve blog today, thanks to Mr.Ballsrhairy, and I am definitely going to be keeping up with it.

So, now you know all about what has been occupying my little bird brain.  I'm sure none of this would have even caught my attention if this was the spring or summer, and we had 2 weeks of repairs staring at us.

Come on by and say hi if you have a chance. If you haven't seen them, our new work benches are finished and are looking mighty fine.  We are taking suggested donations for items that will be sunk into epoxy in our new bar top.  We are looking for anything bike related that is particularly cool. You know, stuff that will always be fun to look at down in the bar, "dude, I had one one of those!" conversation starting parts.  So if you have any stuff you think might fit the bill, bring it on by.

Thanks for reading...