Thursday, January 31, 2008

For the record...

CycleDog is most definitely not Biker Fox! This is a photograph of me back when I of the football team. Yeah, I was team captain....and the star quarterback. Obviously, it's not a recent photo....

I don't look like Biker Fox at all, though some people claim I'm a dead ringer for some Austrailian guy. Dunno his name.

Bicycle carousel

I'm enjoying the break in the rain in California; I hope you're having a great day in whatever part of the world you're at. Here's something fun from sunny southern California, where the grass is green and the girls are pretty.

Bicyle carousel
Nine salvaged bikes were reassembled into a carousel formation. The bike is modular and can be dismantled and reassembled. It is normally left in public places where it can attract a variety of riders.

More pictures and details at the sculpture's website. It's very cute. Via MAKE.

More bicycle news

GQ men style photographer Sartorlialist thinks ponchos are cool.

Scofflaw cyclist riding without lights gets tased.

Poseur crashes in a group ride, sues the other guy who allegedly caused the crash for £370,000. That's around half a million dollars. Be sure to check out Quick Release for other amusing and interesting cycling stories.

Remember that speeding jerk who killed teen cyclist Enaitz Iriondo and then sued his family for the damage to his car? He changed his mind after angry mobs "hundreds of people gathered outside the courthouse ... where the case was to be heard."

Seattle: Bike racks to be replaced on Metro buses. Apparently there were concerns that the newer 3 bike racks didn't secure bikes well enough, so Metro removed the racks. The replacements are 2 bike racks.

Cycling as inspiration for teens in Cape Town, South Africa.

More bike inspired, uh, inspiration: "One of Tim Pickens's biggest breakthroughs in his lifetime quest to fling stuff into space came on the back of a regular old bicycle." Read more at the Christian Science Monitor.

Team Astana tries to clean up its image: "We're not the same cycling team."

MAKE has been posting about makeshift bicycle camera mounts, but the folks at Cycleliciousness have turned me on to the Joby Gorillapod and I haven't looked back.

bicycle camera mount tripod
If you insist on rolling your own, however, here's Yet Another Articulated Bicycle Camera Mount (YAABCM).

Lift a ton and a half with a bicycle tire pump.

Jail sentence for running stop sign

Andrew Bamberg ran a stop sign, presented photos of a different intersection to "prove" the absence of a stop sign and then -- when a traffic engineer offered to take a look at the intersection -- switched street signs around to confuse the court.
The 42-year-old former car salesman was sentenced in San Mateo County Superior Court to a year in the county jail after he was convicted of three felonies - two counts of perjury and one of preparing false evidence - for trying to dodge a traffic ticket by taking photos of another intersection and then lying about it in court.

Bamberg was driving on Whipple Avenue in Redwood City when he allegedly ran a stop sign at King Street. Bamberg argued he had stopped at the sign at the intersection of Whipple and Copley avenues, but had not stopped at the intersection of Whipple and King because there was no stop sign.

In fact, King Street and Copley Avenue are the same street, but the name changes at Whipple Avenue - something prosecutors believe Bamberg tried to obscure when he was making his argument. The intersection is a four-way stop.

Bamberg, who was then representing himself, offered five black-and-white photos in his defense at a May 10, 2005, trial in traffic court, two of which he said showed no stop sign at King Street, according to court documents. Traffic Commissioner Susan Greenberg suspected those two photos were not of the relevant intersection but from one block away.

When Greenberg said she would go to the scene herself to investigate, prosecutors suspect Bamberg replaced the King Street sign at the Whipple Avenue intersection with one from Copley - essentially erasing any trace of the intersection of King and Whipple - in an attempt to confuse her.
I'm not familiar with this intersection in Redwood City, but Google Maps shows me a residential thoroughfare. I'd guess the four way stop is in place to slow traffic, and this abuse of stop signs leads poor stop compliance at these intersections. Bamberg probably got what he deserved when he tried to fool the court, but there are plenty of reasons to fight failure to stop tickets at these kinds of intersections. Multiway stops are appropriate for high volume streets, where there are a high number of accidents, where there are problems with visibility, or from balanced traffic volume at intersections. In most other cases, 4-way sstops are not appropriate because drivers (and cyclists) don't stop for "unnecessary" stops, stop signs don't slow speeds and in fact drivers speed up to make up for the perceived lost time, and the unneeded stops increase noise and pollution in the immediate area of the intersection.

For more about traffic calming and stop signs, see Victoria Transport Policy and the city of Kirkland, WA traffic calming page. Read more about Bamberg in the Chronicle.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Glow in the dark bicycle

The Puma Urban Mobility folding bicycle will be available in a "glow in the dark" edition this spring, according to the WIRED Gadget blog.

Glow in the dark Puma Urban Mobility bicycle
Puma's Urban Mobility bikes are equipped with Shimano's 8 speed Alfine, a lightweight rack (22 lb weight limit), disc brakes and a tiny handlebar basket for wallets and cellphones. It looks like the glow-in-the-dark edition will also come with a tail light and headlight.

A really unique feature is the integrated cable lock that doubles as the bike's downtube. If a thief cuts the cable lock, the bike is rendered non-ridable. Puma's "bike centers" will only repair the cable for registered owners of the bike.

Puma cable lock
The Puma Urban Mobility Bicycle is available in the United States at Puma Stores in Washington, DC; Santa Monica, CA; San Francisco; San Diego; Portland, OR; Philadelphia; New York City; Los Angeles; Las Vegas; Chicago; Boston and Austin, TX. Visit Puma Urban Mobility and navigate their nasty flash menu to find bike dealers world wide.

Fat tire bikes

Turner Tech Snow Bike
I think we're all familiar with the Surly Pugsley and it's well know that Moots custom builds snow bikes. Plenty of other options are available for fat tire bicycles for snow and sand riding.

"FatBikes" is the trademark for the bicycles from Wildfire Cycles in Alaska. The frames and forks are specially built to take ultra wide rims and tires for use on Alaska's deep snow. They use the DeSalvo FatBike fork. DeSalvo also can build up fat bikes for you in Oregon.

DeSalvo Snow Bike
What got me thinking about Fat Bikes was mention of this titanium fat bike from Speedway Cycles in Alaska. The "Fatback" has mondo clearance, vertical dropouts, 100mm forks, and 100mm bottom bracket for all possible gears. Because it's titanium, it's rust free.

Vicious Cycles builds the Thunderwing. This steel bike features proprietary cable routing to keep the kinks out (important in extreme weather), 3 bottle mounts for water and fuel, and sealed tubes to keep the water out as well as a seat tube drain hole. A stainless steel bottle opener is welded to the frame.

Turner is apparently a favorite to convert into a snow bike.

Turner Tech Snow Bike

I think all Evingson does is fat tire bikes. Check out this build with a Rohloff 14 speed hub.

Plenty of people convert their 29ers to "half fat tire" by replacing the front fork with a fat fork and putting a normal 26 inch tire on the rear. I just had to mention Jeff Jones "Fat Fork" option, though, because he specifically mentions the bike's "lateral stiffness, vertical compliance" on the website -- ha ha!

Don't forget to visit Fat Bike Alaska blog for more fat tire snow bike goodness.

Most of these photos were taken from the bike builder website or from this MTBR discussion on fat tire snow bikes.

Many of these independent bike builders will be at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show in Portland in a couple of weeks. I'll be there too and let you know about the goodies I see there. I'll also have some giveaways (Kryptonite lock, Swrve pants, 53 Mile Per Burrito stickers) -- I just need some ideas on how to do the giveaway!

Biker Fox

I'm stunned -- stunned, I tell ya! -- that there are bike bloggers who imply that everyone's favorite shirtless dancer is not Biker Fox!!

Tulsa, Oklahoma has a number of nationally known bike personalities that are out of proportion to it's population. The campy Biker Fox is one of them. He can be seen in the streets of Tulsa, Oklahoma in his ridiculously campy outfits performing impromptu stunts.

Click on the Biker Fox website to see his awesome Biker Fox movie trailer.

Biker Fox of Tulsa getting kissed by two foxy babes
In case you're wondering, the other two Tulsa bike personalities are Paul Tay, who used to tow a seven foot male organ on his bike, once ran for mayor of Tulsa and is now on the ballot for Tulsa City Council; and the ever popular Wally Crankset.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

ATOC anti doping strategy

Joe Lindsey writes about the Amgen Tour of California doping protocol in a guest post over at Freakanomics. In case you missed the news, all cyclists will have blood drawn and tested prior to the race. 30% of riders will also provide urine samples. Lindsey compares that to Team Slipstream's anti doping strategy -- each rider on that team is tested pre-race, and anyone who shows signs of potential doping is just benched for that race. If he fails too many tests, he's fired.

It occurs to me that Slipstream's procedure could reveal whether "false positives" are actually a problem or not, especially if Slipstream's tests are well documented and audited correctly. If a Slipstream cyclist ever tests positive and Slipstream's paperwork is all in order I foresee a lot of "I told you so!" from the Trust But Verify crowd.

Yuba Mundo cargo bike

Behold the Yuba Mundo cargo bicycle.

Yuba plans to introduce the Mundo cargo bike to Europe this month, followed by a release to America in February. This high-tensile steel bike with a long frame allows for extra carrying capacity; the rear platform can haul up to two extra passengers or up to 485 lbs / 220 kg of cargo.

The Mundo 1-speed is the entry-level model ideally suited for flat to mildly rolling terrain with low maintenance features. The Mundo 6-speed offers the most advantages for hilly terrain and heavier cargo hauling. The Mundo 5-speed uses an internal hub, reinforced for cargo hauling, that enables the rider to shift on the fly whether pedaling, cruising or idling. The 5-speed is also suited for heavier loads. Prices will start at US$750 or €540. Kickstands and fenders / mudguards are optional extras.

In the United States, the Yuba Mundo will be available from Rock the Bike in Berkeley, California. They'll ship it to you in the United States for $45, some assembly is required. They're available in the UK at Bike Fix in London; in Bonn, Germany at Velo City; from Velectris in France; and in Helsinki, Finland at Ultra Fun Oyab. You can also purchase online directly from Yuba and pay with Pay Pal and various credit card options.

Thanks to the WIRED blog for reminding me about this bike, which has more details on models and colors offered.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Dogs and the SLUT

Anne Jovi has dogs for the S.L.U.T. Aren't they adorable?

Dogs in a bike basket She tells me they're too big for the basket now. Enjoy 'em while they're young!

I don't remember if I mentioned this or not yet, but I have a new link bait rule: Post a picture of your cute pet on or around the bike, link back to Cyclelicious and ensure I find it and I'll post a link back to your website or blog. You can see the other bicycle pet posts by clicking on the "pets" label below.

Sheyrl Crow - Gasoline

Sheryl Crow sees a Mad Max future in "Gasoline."
Way back in the year of 2017
The sun was growing hotter
And oil was way beyond its peak
When crazy Hector Johnson broke into a refinery
And the black gold started flowing
Just like Boston tea

It was the summer of the riots
And London sat in sweltering heat
And the gangs of Mini Coopers
Took the battle to the streets
But when the creed was handed down
For no more trucks and no more cars
They threw cans of petrol through the windows at Scotland Yard

Full lyrics at Sheryl Crow discussion board. Via The Drum Beat.

Vintage bicycle photos

Pete aka "fixedgear" has been downloading images of old vintage cycling photos, posters and ads and copying them to his Flickr stream for our enjoyment.

Cigarette smoking French Michelin man on a bicycle

Click on the photos to be taken to the different photo sets they belong to.

Pete's old cycling posters

Library of Congress bicycle photos

Be sure to give Pete a visit and say hello.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

42 foot tricycle

As seen on Japanese television...

This huge tricycle built by Kanyaboyina Sudhaker of Hyderabad takes 300 pedal revolutions for each wheel revolution. The wheels on this 42 foot tricycle has wheels that are 17 feet across. This trike is in the Guinness Book of World Records as the world's largest tricycle. Thank you to Roto1000 for this tip.

More about Sudhaker and his vehicular creations are at his website.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Bicycle snow plow

It's been at least a year since somebody has mentioned David Peterson's bicycle snow plow.

David Peterson's bicycle snow plow
Peterson rides his bike seven miles to his job at Fermilab in Chicago Chicagoland. When he built this snow plow for his bicycle several years ago, the bike paths he took to work weren't plowed, so he started walking to work with a shovel and shoveling the path along the way. He soon moved up to a push plow, a contraption he pushes like a baby stroller with angled blades to push the snow to the side.

In 2002, he built his tow-behind snow plow.

david peterson and his bicycle snow plow
David Peterson posts the history and detailed construction plans for the bicycle snow plow at his website. I have no idea if he still uses this (the website was last updated in 2005), but I've sent Peterson an email and we'll see what he says.

Here's another bicycle snow plow photo I found randomly on the web.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Soma: Gold pedal

Ain't this a pretty track pedal?

Soma fabrications gold hellyer track bicycle pedal
The gold Hellyer track pedal is among the new products Soma Fabrications announced on Friday.

More bike riders in San Francisco in 2007

The number of San Francisco bike riders rose by 15 percent from 2006 to 2007, according to a report by The City’s bicycle program.

In the study, which will be presented today at the Bicycle Advisory Committee, observers from the Municipal Transportation Agency’s Bicycle Program counted 6,454 cyclists on the streets during sample days in August 2007, which is 800 more than noted in 2006, the first year of the bicycle counting program.
Read more at the San Francisco Examiner.

Fixie hipster rock anthem

Here's the Nada Surf "Whose Authority" music video on YouTube, featuring a guy riding his fixed gear bike through New York City, dodging cabs, hooks, doors, pedestrians and red lights.

Via Bike Snob, who of course has much more to say about this video.

Friday bicycle news

It's still raining in California and I'm still riding. Here's the news for today.

Brad Pitt on a Bianchi.

200 new electronic bike lockers at some BART stations in the East Bay.

Amgen Tour of California organizers in Palo Alto are short on cash.

Tour Down Under: Team Rabobank's Michael Hayman seriously injured in head butt. Read here and here.

Anonymous cyclist "John Doe" sues USADA. Sample 'A' came back negative, so USADA wants to test 'B' sample, which is against the doping agencie's own rules and testing protocol.

Bike thefts are down 50% in China as a result of a bike theft crackdown by the Ministry of Public Safety and other government agencies. More than 3,700 thefts were reported daily across China last year. No word on how China deals with bike thieves.

James has some good links at Bicycle Design, including a story about an amazing all wood bicycle -- the complete drive train is even made completely of wood and glue. I'm talking the chain, freewheel ratchet and cog. A 16 year old built that bike by hand as a school project.

Fiji bicycle club

For all the folks from Fiji reading this blog, here's the blog for the Velocity Cycling and Multi Sport Club in Fiji.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Letter to a Supermarket: Update

I got a very interesting call from Sobeys today.

I noticed a call from the Sydney Sobeys on my Call Display when I got home. I asked my life partner about it; she said that a guy had called looking for me and he said he'd call my cell phone. So, I checked my cell phone voice mail (I keep it off during the day). It was a message from Assistant Manager Terry MacLeod asking me to give him a call; so I did. He tells me he got my E-mail. Not sure what to expect, I polarize the hull plating, preparing for the worst.

I was not prepared for what happened next.

He started by asking me who I was speaking to. Puzzled, I explained that the gentleman who I spoke to identified himself as "Terry MacLeod." "That's me," says the gentleman. "The thing is, it was not me you spoke to."

As it turns out, Mr. MacLeod was at his son's guitar recital on Saturday afternoon; he was not in the store that day. The gentleman I spoke to was, in fact, the bakery manager, not the assistant store manager. The thing was, when I went over to him, I asked him specifically for his name, not the name of a manager. He said "Terry MacLeod;" that was absolutely clear.

I felt bad for Mr. MacLeod. When he arrived at work today, he had an E-mail in his inbox from the President of Sobeys Atlantic asking him to explain what happened on Saturday. The poor guy didn't even know about the whole thing until he got there today.

He also said something else that caught my ear; his exact words were: "Bringing bicycles in is no problem."

It wasn't bad enough that the guy I spoke to didn't even have the honor and decency to give me his real name but now, to top it off he was doing exactly what I suspected all along: making up a policy on the spot to intimidate me. Mr. MacLeod was very clear on the matter: Sobeys has no written policy whatsoever on bicycles and, in fact, provided you don't ride them inside, Mr. MacLeod has no problem whatsoever with bringing a bicycle into the store.

Mr. MacLeod asked me to come down and see him in person so, next time, if someone ever tries to claim to be him, I'll know. I went to see him a couple of hours ago. He was totally apologetic promising he will address the gentleman I spoke to tomorrow (I'd love to be a fly on that wall ;)) and let me know the results of that meeting. In the meantime, to make up for my inconvenience, he presented me with a $25.00 Sobeys Gift Card.

In the end, I wheeled my bicycle right past that security guard who initially approached me and turned into the store to go pick up a jar of pesto.

Sometimes it seems, it pays to speak up. :)

Notes on Nina (not a ballerina...)

High tech, young, pretty, low footprint and green

I profiled local bike commuter Nina Simon today on Commute By Bike. I first noticed Nina a couple of months ago as she rode into town from the woods and past my home to the bus stop. She always wears a bright yellow vest with red LED blinking lights built into the vest. I labeled this cyclist "the yellow vest girl."

Nina the bike commuter
Somewhat later I was at the local climbing gym in Santa Cruz. Nina was there climbing the wall. I didn't make the connection between this climber and "yellow vest girl" though, but I clearly remember thinking that this climber must be a cyclist because she has cyclist legs.

As I sat to eat lunch this climber joined me and asks if I ride my bike and take the bus to San Jose during the week. The climber turns out to be "yellow vest girl." She's 20-something, attractive with curly brown hair, very fit, and a wonderful poster child for the future of our nation and world. Nina and her husband live off-grid using photovoltaic panels, car batteries, and RV appliances.

She's a big change from the usual crazy, backwoods off-grid people I know. Many are grizzled and highly opinionated retired engineers, and a lot are also borderline isolationist misfits who forgot about personal hygiene, especially in the Happy Valley area where Nina lives. Nina, on the other hand, invites kids to use her bike powered blender to make smoothies. She's a wonderful conversationalist. She doesn't dress like a bum, nor does she smell like one (even after a hard session at the climbing gym). If you read her blog you'll see she's a good communicator.

Nina speaks with the tempo and language of an east coast urbanite, so I was taken aback when she started talking about some aspects of her off-grid living, especially the composting toilet. "Oh," I asked, "what kind of composting toilet to you have?" I envisioned something fancy, high tech, expensive and European when she answered matter of factly, "We just use buckets and some hay."

Nina and her husband are both very involved in high technology, but it's wonderful to see younger adults making choices to dramatically lower their footprint. She's not a crazy activist with an axe to grind; she's just somebody who's made some choices about what's important. Meeting Nina makes me hopeful for the future of the United States.

Tree hugger, bicyclist, Frenchman, gay guy all in one shot

Melissa Arrington killed cyclist Paul L'Ecuyer with her car in December 2006. Though she expressed remorse to the judge, she laughed out loud after a friend told her she should get a medal and a parade because she had "taken out" a "tree hugger, a bicyclist, a Frenchman and a gay guy all in one shot." When the man said he knew it was a terrible thing to say, she responded, "No, it's not."

Arizona Superior Court Judge Michael Cruikshank said he found a telephone conversation between Arrington and an unknown male friend, a week after L'Ecuyer was killed, to be "breathtaking in its inhumanity." He sentenced her Tuesday to 10 1/2 years — one year shy of the maximum.

Read more at FoxNews. Props to Warren T. Who is not a wimp.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Rainy days

While Canada and much of the northern half of the USA have had sub- sub- sub- sub-freezing temperatures, I've been having to suffer through drizzly rain all week in California. Here's the news and oddball stuff from around the world of bicycle blogs.

Warren found this unusual unicycle.

Amgen Tour of California adopts "adopt the most comprehensive anti-doping protocol in cycling history." Donna doesn't like it and rants about it.

USA Cycling nominates Olympic cycling team members for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Citizen Rider: Work backward from the results you want.

This is messed up: East German citizen dug through old Stasi (DDR secret police) files and discovered an agent purposely let air out of her bicycle tires while she went shopping. "If I had told anyone at the time that the Stasi was giving me flat tires, they would have laughed at me," she says. "It was a way to discredit people, make them seem crazy. I doubted my own sanity sometimes." Read more.

Another wonderful piece on cycling history from Dave Moulton: Gino Bartli, the cyclist who saved Italy.

Integrated fork light. Cool stuff.

Sissies on bikes

Some of my utility cyclist friends like to brag about their heavy clunker bikes and think that roadies who ride a hundred miles at a time on their lightweight bikes are sissies, wussies, weaklings, cheaters and worse.

After meeting Max this last weekend, I have to agree. I mean look a this guy on his wimp bike on the summit of Mount Tamalpais in Marin County, California.

Max on Mt. Tamalpais

Max is 60-something years old and rode his bike from his home near sea level up Panoramic Drive with its 8% grade to the summit of Mount Tamalpais at 2,600 above sea level. This guy is truly a weakling -- he uses gears (14 of them on his Rohloff hub) and kits up in the bike athlete outfit in a lame attempt to be like Lance Armstrong. A Real Man would clearly ride a half mile straight up the side of a mountain on the heaviest rustbucket he can find. He would wear heavy jeans, a cotton sweatshirt, and hiking boots to maximize the effort.

In case you can't tell, I'm just a little bit sarcastic. I appreciate all types of bikes, but to dis the the sport I love and the athletes who partake of it -- even the weekend warriors -- is just ridiculous and makes the armchair commentators just sound like fools.

Confidential to Wild: I meant to call, but I forgot to bring your number. Next time!

Automatic turn signal for cyclists

bicycle turn signal Here's something for Sue. Safe Turn is a wrist-mounted automatic turn signal for cyclists. You strap the Safe Turn light to your wrist. When you raise your arm to signal a turn, a tilt switch activates the three flashing LEDs. (And we all signal our turns, right?)

Watch a video of the Safe Turn in action.

The Safe Turn signal light is available worldwide directly from Safe Turn in Australia. You can also buy Safe Turn from bike shops through distributors in Australia, Japan, Israel, and New Zealand. They haven't lined up U.S. or European distributors yet.

Via Gizmodo.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Bike design contest

Design 21: Social Design Network seeks to inspire social activism through design. Their Power to the Pedal design competition calls for a biking accessory or add-on for existing bikes that improves the bicycling experience and encourages more people to make biking their primary means of transport – more convenient, more enjoyable, safer and more integrated into daily lifestyles – whether it's for commuting, working, shopping, transporting, leisure or all of the above. Cash prizes from $5,000 to $500 should be incentive to get some good ideas in the contest. Entries will be accepted until April 30, 2008 and will be judged on overall effectiveness, creativity, practicality, aesthetics, and ecology. See Design 21 for details.

Props to Sue in Illinois for this news. Click on Sue's blog for her thoughts also on how all humans are due some reverence.

DIY bicycle cap

Flickr user Panda Face sews his own cycling caps. You can too.

The pattern is here. He uses a thin piece of plastic from a school folder (cut to shape) to stiffen the bill. Props to Bren @ Bike Hacks, which has lots of other cool DIY projects for your bike.


Update: State corrected; thank you to James for the note.

In the Greenville, North South Carolina area a motorist in a white pickup truck has been harassing cyclists on local roads. Several cyclists report being buzzed and swerved into by the white pickup truck.

One enterprising cyclist apparently tracked the truck down and posted details about the residence of the white pickup driver. From the website:
There are two teenage brothers residing at the address that match the descriptions that have been given. There is also a white Ford Ranger registered at the address. The teens are described as Caucasian males of heavier build in their late teens, maybe early twenties. The suspect address is 410 Dividing Waters, owned by Tammy G. Bryant. The house is a large, newer home of 2755 sq. ft. tax valued at $186,000. The house sticks out compared to the homes around it because of it's large size and newness. It is on the west side of Dividing Water near the top of the climb. There used to be a large confederate flag hanging in one of the top windows of the home. This is not the house with the skulls and zillion "No Tresspassing" and "You will be Shot on the Spot" signs. That house is on the opposite of the road. One or more junk race cars have been seen in the front yard.
James, who posted this website to his Bike Greenville blog, encourages local cyclists to let law enforcement do their job. It should be interesting to see what happens in this case of cyclist harassment.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Kate Hudson rides a bicycle

Actress Kate Hudson was seen Sunday riding her Trek mountain bike in Santa Monica, California.
Kate Hudson on a bicycle Gossip Girls reports Kate Hudson was wearing "black spandex shorts and a cute tank top," but she had a bag hanging uncomfortably in front of her chest with the strap wrapped behind her neck. Kate rides what appears to be the 2006 Trek 6700.

See more and larger photos of Kate Hudson on a bicycle over at Gossip Girls.

When the celebrities begin showing on bikes at awards shows, that will be some real news!

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Bike pumped espresso

This is a beautiful thing: A espresso maker that's powered by a bicycle pump. Yum. Via Doc Logan.

While we're on the topic of bike pumps: Cycleliciousness has rediscovered those Dutch heklucht combination bike racks and air pumps.

Finally, let me direct your attention to Bike Hacks, a website about Do It Yourself bike projects.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Letter to a Supermarket

Kevin Rogers
Sobeys Prince Street Sydney Store
272B Prince Street
Sydney NS B1P 5K6

Dear Mr. Rogers:

I am a cyclist who rides a bicycle year-round for transportation. Frequently, I've brought my bike into your store. If what I have to buy can be carried with reasonable ease on the bike, I simply take the whole thing inside in lieu of getting a cart; it doesn't bring in any more dirt, or take up any more room, than a cart. Until now, the staff has always allowed this. This is, in turn, the main reason I choose to patronize Sobeys over Atlantic SuperStore, which does not permit this.

Around 2:00 PM today, I brought the bike in as I usually do and went to the deli counter. It was particularly important I have it with me on this occasion because I was purchasing something to bring to a pot-luck dinner and had to make sure that whatever I was purchasing would fit in my trunk pack. However, as I was being served, I was approached by a security guard who told me I had to take my bike into the lobby. I explained to him how Sobeys staff had never objected to my bringing it in before.

However, shortly after he left, I was approached by Terry McLeod, one of your employees. He identified himself as the store manager and repeated what the security guard had said; from now on, I'd have to leave my bike in the lobby. When I explained my rationale for bringing it in, he claimed that Sobeys has a specific policy forbidding persons from bringing bicycles inside. I asked if this policy was in writing; he said it was and that, "Next time you're in, we'll have it for you."

I did a search for the term "bicycle" on both your customer and corporate websites; both searches failed to yield any hits. If what Mr. McLeod told me was true, I would think this document would have appeared somewhere on one of your sites since it's obviously something that cycling customers patronizing your store would need to know. Further, although on the front door is a sign requiring footwear and shoes and forbidding pets, there is nothing on the door about bicycles whatsoever.

I would like to know if there is, in fact, a written policy against bringing bicycles into your stores. If so, I would like a copy of that policy along with an explanation of the rationale behind it. If there is no such policy, however, then I would like to file a formal grievance against Mr. Terry McLeod for falsely claiming that there was.

If you have any questions, please feel free to call me at either of the numbers below or E-mail me at this address. I've also provided my mailing address if you'd like to send me anything by postal mail as well.

I am a regular Sobeys customer and have been for almost nine years; I'd like to clear up this matter as soon as possible. Please respond at your earliest convenience.

Thank you for your time.

**-** ********* **
SYDNEY NS *** ***

(902) ***-****
(902) ***-****

Interview with Tim Parr, Brad Quartuccio, Tim Jackson

Tim Grahl posted a video of Tim Parr (owner of Swobo), Brad Quartuccio (Urban Velo) and Tim Jackson (Masi Bikes) in which they talk about how the bike industry is encouraging people to use bikes for transportation. Watch it here.

The Bicycle Leadership Conference started this weekend in San Diego. Trek chief John Burke will talk about increased industry involvement in advocacy in his keynote tomorrow morning.

Rich Kelly of Interbike is there, as well as somebody from SOAR Communications (which does marketing for Interbike). Tim Jackson of Masi is also there and says he'll try to post news from the conference if he can get Wi Fi access there. He already posted his thoughts on Rob McSkimming's talk. McSkimming is VP of Business Development for Whistler Blackthorne, and he talked about what the bike business can learn from the ski industry to improve business.

One of the things that came out at the Conference was a new Bicycle Owners Manual that meets new European standards for bike sales. The new manual focuses on actual product usage, riding and includes a lot of how-to. It also takes owners through topics such as “What happens if” and includes instruction on suspension, disc brakes, materials, torque, and maintenance.

Anything would be a big improvement over most of the owners manuals I've seen that come with bikes. The best I've seen comes from Breezer Bikes -- besides going into detail on basic bike maintenance, Breezer Bikes owners' manual covers fit, general riding tips, braking technique, flat fixing and so forth. Instead of the usual CYA lawyer speak, Breezer manuals include specific and useful information on how riders can ride safely. Most manuals, for example, caution that riding at night is dangerous and should not be done; Breezer's manuals advise riders to use their lights and give instruction on how to adjust the lights. The manuals also give tips on wet weather riding.

Besides the general riding tips in the Breezer owners' manual, each Breezer Bike also comes with John Allen's Street Skills pamphlet on riding legally and safely. You can download PDFs of the owners manuals at Breezer's resources page.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Portland's bike programs pay off

According to Bicycling Magazine, Portland, Ore., has the highest number of bike commuters in the country. Ethan Lindsey of Oregon Public Broadcasting reports on this Marketplace story about the industry that's grown up around all those riders, with text, audio, and video. The story is about the industry that has grown up as a result of Portland's "bike friendly" status.

NY judge strikes pedicab registration rule

State Supreme Court Justice Edward Lehner ruled for the New York City Pedicab Owners Association by killing a New York City rule allowing anybody to apply for a limited number of pedicab registration plates. The pedicab owners group sought to limit registration only to pedicab owners. More at Newsday.

More Bicycle News

Sweet story: Boy with missing arm gets specially designed bicycle designed and built by prisoners.

Gil the Bay Area bike commuter
I've seen this happen once: a cyclist forgets his bike on the bus! In Seattle, this happened to 863 bikes in 2007.

Texas bicycle bandit captured!

Tourist tackles bike thief in Australia.

Essay contest: Win and get a bike and helmet.

Some goofiness for today -- Calgary Ironman triathlete Greg Kolodziejz plans to set a record by traveling across the Atlantic ocean in a pedal powered boat. Read more about his plans in the Toronto Star.

Tasmanian Bicycle Council back in action.

Remember, Monday is Martin Luther King Jr Day in the United States. Caltrain will run the 23rd Annual Freedom Train from San Jose to San Francisco on Monday. Tickets for the Freedom Train must be obtained through the Martin Luther King Jr Association of Santa Clara Valley.

I really like the idea of honoring a national hero through a day of service, such as mountain bike trail work as reported at Singletracks.

I hope you all have a great weekend!

Photo by me. That's Gil the bike commuter in San Jose, California. He usually catches the train from Mountain View up to San Mateo, participates in San Francisco Critical Mass, and hauls his stuff around on a seatpost mounted rack. Go Gil!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Amtrak strike would impact Caltrain, other commuter rail services

Update: Strike Averted -- "Amtrak and nine of its unions have reached a tentative contract agreement, according to industry experts, and plan to announce the settlement on Friday."

A possible strike by Amtrak workers on January 30 would stop commuter rail service in the San Francisco Bay Area as well commuter rail service in the areas around Chicago, New York City, Boston, Virginia, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Philadelphia. Thank you to Jennifer for the heads up.

SF Examiner: Amtrak strike would derail Caltrain service.

Associated Press: Rail Strike Would Be Commuter Nightmare.

Associated Press lists commuter rail services that would be impacted by an Amtrak strike. Chicago Metra, Long Island Rail Road, Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority, Maryland MARC, Virginia Railway Express, Connecticut Shore Line East, and San Francisco Bay Area Caltrain are either operated by Amtrak employees or use facilities controlled by Amtrak and would be impacted by the strike.

Chicago Tribune: Specter of Amtrak strike has commuters bracing for shutdowns.

Chicago Business News: Amtrak strike could close Union Station to Metra riders.

Newsday: Amtrak strike would derail LIRR riders at 5 stops.

NJ Transit issues strike warning. Amtrak strike could shut 6 SEPTA lines.

Boston: Amtrak strike could cripple commuter rail service.

Stylish men on bikes

Scott Schuman aka The Sartorialist has a monthly column in GQ magazine in which he features men's fashion in the streets. For the March issue, Scott will feature "cool, chic guys I know that ride their bikes to work almost every day."

To see Scott's street fashion photos of men and women on bikes, visit the Bicycle category on his Sartorialist blog.

Men's fashion and cycling

2008 Amgen Tour of California teams

17 professional cycling teams will compete in the 2008 Amgen Tour of California, including Pro Tour teams and several top USA domestic teams to make this a world class bicycle race for an American audience.

Split between teams who compete on the UCI Pro Tour and those who race predominately in the United States, the field of 136 athletes will be one of the most diverse, accomplished groups of cyclists ever assembled for a stage race in the U.S.

"Even though the new Astana Cycling Team is making its U.S. racing debut, we are bringing numerous riders who have found success on U.S. soil in the past," said Philippe Maertens, spokesman for the Astana Cycling Team. "The riders are excited to begin the season in California and are motivated to help Levi Leipheimer defend his Amgen Tour of California title."

Along with Pro Tour teams, the growing class of top domestic teams will be represented by return competitors Health Net Pro Cycling Team Presented by Maxxis, Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team, Jelly Belly Cycling Team and Bissell Pro Cycling Team, and new competitors Rock Racing and Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medifast.

"The Jelly Belly Cycling Team is very excited about being selected by the Amgen Tour of California to participate in this year's event," said Danny Van Haute, manager of the Jelly Belly Cycling Team. "This will be Jelly Belly's ninth season in the cycling community. The team is looking forward to the competition."

Several of the 17 professional cycling teams will hold their pre-season training camps in California, which will give residents throughout the state an opportunity to watch these elite athletes prepare for the top professional cycling race in the United States.

The teams are:

· Astana (LUX)

· Bissell Pro Cycling Team (USA)

· BMC Racing Team (USA)

· Bouygues Telecom (FRA)

· Crédit Agricole (FRA)

· Gerolsteiner (GER)

· Health Net Presented by Maxxis (USA)

· High Road Sports (GER)

· Jelly Belly Cycling Team (USA)

· Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medifast (USA)

· Quick Step (BEL)

· Rabobank Cycling Team (Netherlands)

· Rock Racing (USA)

· Saunier Duval-Scott (ESP)

· Team CSC (DEN)

· Team Slipstream Powered by Chipotle (USA)

· Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team (USA)

Bicycle news

Bicycle Leadership Conference

The 2008 Bicycle Leadership Conference begins tomorrow in San Diego, California. The first item on the agenda is the BLC Golf Tournament at the Steel Canyon Golf Club. The non-golfers can go for a bike ride.

Saturday morning, Interbike consultant Lance Camisasca will have a breakfast presentation to discuss the possibility of moving Interbike out of Las Vegas after the 2009 show. "We want to be prepared to provide the best shows possible." Camisasca said. "At last year's conference, we gained valuable insight from the manufacturers and retailers who attended and I think that everyone left with a better understanding of the multiple factors we consider when entertaining the idea of possibly moving a major show. We hope this year will be equally beneficial as we discuss our recommendations for the show in the coming years."

Sunday morning, Trek Bicycle Company President John Burke will deliver the industry keynote address, where he will talk about "The Bicycle Industry's Greatest Opportunity" expanding on his campaign for increased cycling advocacy in the bicycle industry. See Bicycle Leadership Conference website for details.

Celebrity Time Trials

The Local Organizing Committee for the 2008 Tour of California Prologue in Palo Alto will give local cyclists an opportunity to give it their all on the official individual time trial route before the race begins on Sunday, February 17. The highest bidders in an auction will be able to test their speeds against some of the best cyclists in the world on the closed time trial course from Palo Alto City Hall to Stanford University. A press conference to present the details starts about a half from from now at Palo Alto Bicycles on University Avenue in downtown Palo Alto.

"Car culture if fading."

Those are the words of Nissan Motors General Manager for Product Strategy Tom Lane in this interview from the Detroit auto show. Via Bike Portland.

Innovate Or Die contest winner

From the Google Blog:
The contest said to "Innovate or Die" – and Team Aquaduct lives! In fact, the San Bruno, California team – consisting of John Lai, Adam Mack, Brian Mason, Eleanor Morgan, Paul Silberschatz – is living in grand (prize) style today after winning the first Innovate or Die Pedal-Powered Machine contest.

Team Aquaduct was declared the winner out of 102 entries by building a unique and functional solution to provide rural communities with access to clean water. The quintet will share the $5,000 grand prize, and each will receive a Specialized Globe bicycle – as will all five of the finalist runners-up (read more about all the winners).

The contest encouraged people to evaluate environmental issues and develop ingenious solutions surrounding climate change. Many original and inspiring ideas emerged; make sure to visit the YouTube Innovate or Die page to view all of the entries.
Visit the Google Blog for details and video.

More bicycle news and blog commentary

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Merging into a bike lane is not the same as turning across it

[ Publishers note: If you feel like this or any other article on Cyclelicious is worth passing along, please remember to click the social networking vote buttons below (i.e., digg, and CycleCluster). Thanks! ]
In a recent column in Oregon Cycling, Bikes & The Law: The Right Hook, attorney Ray Thomas states, "the law clearly requires motor vehicles to first yield the right-of-way to bicyclists occupying the bike lane, just as vehicles changing lanes on a multi-lane roadway must first yield the right-of-way to other vehicles occupying the lane the driver would like to enter."

Not quite. Merging into a lane (changing lanes) is not the same as turning across a bike lane. A driver merges into a lane with other drivers going the same direction. A driver turning across a bike lane is crossing the bike lane, not merging into it. As the driver turns across the bike lane, in fact, he is going in a different direction from through bicyclists in the bike lane.

There is no name in traffic engineering for the act of crossing a through lane to make a turn, because such an act violates the principle of positioning your vehicle before you make a turn. Yet that is exactly what proponents of the Portland bike lanes are saying they want to happen. They want through bicyclists to keep to the right of right turning vehicles. I was taught never to pass a right turning car on the right during a group ride when I first started to ride seriously over 30 years ago. A little while later I was involved in the development of the bike lane law in California that was passed in 1976. We specifically designed that law to try to prevent right hook accidents.

On a freeway, slower traffic is supposed to keep to the right. But exits are located on the right side. Does that mean that a fast driver is supposed to take an exit directly from the left lane? No, you can get a ticket for that. Instead, a fast driver is required to merge into the right lane first, then exit, even if he has to slow down to match the speed of traffic in the right lane. That is exactly what the California bike lane law requires of drivers turning right from a street with a bike lane.

From what I can tell, both bicyclists who were killed recently in right hook accidents in Portland had pulled up to a red light next to a stopped truck. They were following what I have been told is the bike lane law in Oregon, which invites such right hook accidents. The Oregon law would be like expecting fast drivers on a freeway to exit directly from the left lane, being careful to yield to drivers in the right lane. Such an expectation is clearly unrealistic, so it is not allowed. Why should we expect a similar maneuver on a street with bike lanes to be reasonable or safe?

Mr Thomas also states, "if bicycles in bike lanes weighed the same as locomotives on railroad tracks (where the legal right-of-way principles are quite similar) there would be fewer motorists cutting us off because the result would be catastrophic for the motorist." When railroad tracks run parallel to a highway, the resulting highway/railroad grade crossings and highway/highway intersections are handled in a special way, usually with traffic signals. See the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices.

Light rail lines that run in highway medians have a similar problem. Light rail trains are heavier than cars, and drivers turn left into the paths of such trains way too frequently. So it is not the weight of the train that makes the difference, it is the driver's expectation that they are not turning across the path of through traffic. The same principle applies to bike lanes to the right of right turning cars. It is the fact that bike lanes to the right of right turning vehicles violate a basic principle of traffic and thus violate a driver's expectation that is the problem, not the failure of such drivers to yield to bicyclists in the bike lane.

Bike To Work Day website

Summer the FAST cyclist
James created a Bike To Work Week clickable world map showing the locations of Bike To Work Day and Bike to Work Week events around the world.

2008 Bike To Work Day events 2008

National Bike To Work Day is scheduled for Friday, May 16 in the United States. Here's the official site at the League of American Bicyclists.

San Francisco Bay Area does Bike To Work Day on Thursday, May 15, 2008.

Santa Cruz County Bike To Work Day is also scheduled for May 15, with another Bike To Work event scheduled in the Autumn, also. Ditto for San Benito and Monterey Counties.

Colorado Bike To Work Day is Wednesday, June 25, 2008.

Go ahead and leave your comments: "Every day is Bike To Work Day for .... "
Photo: Summer rides her bike in San Jose, California during Bike To Work Day 2007. Photo by me.

Webcor King of the Mountain Ride

Registration is now open for the second annual Webcor King-of-the-Mountain Ride taking place Saturday, February 16, in San Jose.

The Webcor San Jose King Of The Mountain Ride will feature a 26 mile ascent up San Jose’s Sierra Road. The best and the hardiest cyclists will compete for honor of being King of the Mountain. Hundreds of avid riders are expected to participate in the 26-mile ride. The Ride, which will begin at San Jose City Hall, features police motorcycles leading a rolling closure north and east of Downtown San Jose to the base of the Sierra Road climb. Cyclists then will cross a timing pad to activate timing chips and begin their ascent up Sierra Road—a stunning 3.7-mile, 1,830-foot climb, with an average gradient of 10 percent that was the most difficult stretch of last year's Amgen Tour of California race. After summiting Sierra Road, riders may complete the Sierra / Calaveras / Piedmont loop and ride west to City Hall.

"After last year’s successful Webcor King-of-the-Mountain Ride, we were extremely eager to take part in the 2008 event. We work hard everyday to make a positive difference in our community by donating our time and talents to non-profit organizations, especially those that benefit children and families. Plus, through the Webcor Cycling Team, we hope to demonstrate to youth the importance of teamwork and a way to become true champions. The combination of these two strategic endeavors has again made the Webcor San Jose King of the Mountain Ride a perfect event for Webcor to sponsor," says Webcor Builders President Andy Ball.

For more information and to register for the ride, visit the 2008 King of the Mountain Ride web page.

Games during the bike commute

Dorky Doug commutes to work on mountain bike sensibly equipped with fenders (clip-on, alas), lights, and street slicks. He wears a helmet, high vis yellow jacket and reflective pant straps.

At one particular intersection, there are often three or four cyclists stopping at the red light. I queue up behind whoever stops ahead of me, and following cyclists queue up behind me. Except Dorky Doug -- he always zooms to the front of the line. He does this even though he knows I always pass him, and I have to wait for a break in the heavy traffic before I can pass him.

I'm not in a race and I'm not in a particular hurry, but even when I'm taking it easy I am a faster cyclist than Dorky Doug. When I pass Dorky Doug I'm pedaling what is to me a relaxed, even cadence. Dorky Doug, in the meantime, is red faced with effort, hunched over the handlebars, huffing and puffing like the big bad wolf and mashing his pedals like an angry Godzilla smashing his way through Tokyo.

I realized earlier this week that perhaps Dorky Doug is playing with me. So I decided to play with him. On Monday, he was fiddling with his clip on rear fender. I tapped his rear tire. Paceline riders are accustomed to this, but I don't think Dorky Doug ever felt that before. He pulled over into the gutter and said "Hello" as I passed. Or at least it sounded something like "Hello."

This morning I played with Dorky Doug some more. I started passing him at a wide spot in the bike lane, slowed down to his speed and merged over into Dorky Doug. Doug, unfortunately, had to stop before he hit the parked car in front of him.

I hope Dorky Doug passes me again tomorrow. His games are kind of fun.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Bicycle links

A busy day for me so I'll post a handful of links for you all:

That's Agyness Deyn on a bicycle. I think she was featured in Teen Vogue magazine in their green issue, or something like that. Does anybody know the details?

Velorution in London has some nifty stylish leather ankle straps.

European cities planning to go green.

Cycling to work is an addiction.

Should you buy your bike on the Internet?

An errand bike in every home.

Arlington, Virgina Car Free Diet Expo January 29.

Car Free Char. Via.


The experience of riding low trail bikes.

Cycling at the 2008 Olympics.

Techshop review

I mentioned TechShop last week. TechShop is the open access workshop where they provide the tools like welders, laser cutters, CNC lathe, powder coating oven, sign making machines, industrial sewing machines, and other industrial tools for the kinds of projects you see at MAKE.

Jim G was kind enough to point me to his review of the TechShop experience, where he learned to make his own metal bicycle fenders.

TechShop in Menlo Park, California plans to expand throughout the USA this year, with workshops in Marin, Sacramento, Los Angeles, and San Diego, CA; Seattle; Portland, OR; Austin, TX; Orlando, FL; and Durham, NC.

Steve Jobs keynote @ MacWorld

Everybody is ooohing and ahhhing over the news mapping functionality for the iPhone. If I understand correctly, the iPhone can triangulate from the location of 23 million mapped WiFi hotspots as well as off of the cell phone network to determine the location of your iPhone. That's cool.

The other big news was the expected announcement of iTunes movie rentals. Tied into this, though, is another try with the Apple TV -- you can now rent movies directly from your Internet connected HDTV set, no computer required. That's cool.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Presidential candidates forum on transportation

Presidential candidates from the Republican and Democratic parties have been invited to a Presidential Candidates' Forum on Transportation and Infrastructure. This forum, scheduled for Thursday, January 31 2008 at the Kimmel Center in New York City, is hosted by the NYU Wagner Rudin Center for Transportation Policy and Management. Sponsors include the League of American Bicyclists and Transportation Alternatives. Confirmation has been received that Senator Gravel will attend, as well as representatives from the campaigns of Sen. Barack Obama, Sen. Hillary Clinton, and Mayor Rudolph Giuliani. Conference organizers are still working to obtain confirmation from the campaigns of Governors Huckabee and Romney, Representatives Hunter and Paul, and Senator Fred Thompson.

For more information and to RSVP, visit the NYU Wagner Rudin website. League of American Bicyclists members may also submit question ideas to the League; please feel free to post your questions here and I'll forward them on if you don't have the LAB email address.

Dick's Sporting Goods ads

I enjoyed these humorous ads for Dick's Sporting Goods featuring Lance Armstrong as a store manager. Don't watch these while drinking a soda or coffee.

Via Sara. And for more humor, see this comic about Frankie Andreu's departure from Rock Racing (also via Sara).

Cycle Dog

Megan is a cyclist in Texas. She likes guns, Panda bears, polar bears, fixed gear bikes, and short fenders. This is her dog, Pie.

he loves to trot

Here are a couple more adorable dog with bike photos.

Some might accuse me of pandering to those who hanker for cute pet photos, but really I'm just following industry trends. Sickenly cute pet photos is almost the definition of a succcessful blog, and besides I'm just following CycleDog's lead, here. That's the ticket.

(Click on photos for captions and photographer info)

Sunday, January 13, 2008

VTA: Big route and schedule changes on Monday

Remember, Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority has big changes in routes and scheduling that begin Monday morning, January 14, 2008. While VTA will provide more frequent service on a number of bus lines and convert a number of routes to "Community Bus Service" using smaller buses, several routes have also been eliminated, shortened and combined with other routes. Route 60, for example, will not continue south beyond the Winchester Transit Center, and Route 22 will no longer serve the Menlo Park Caltrain Station. Visit the VTA website (which has been significantly redesigned) for details.

Public transportation to MacWorld

Apple fans heading to the annual Macworld Conference and Expo at the Moscone Center Jan. 14 – 18 can focus on technology rather than traffic and parking by taking Caltrain to The City.

Attendees of the week-long conference will find Caltrain’s 96 weekday trains a convenient way to avoid the city’s traffic and parking hassles. All northbound trains end at the San Francisco Caltrain Station at Fourth and King streets. From there, passengers can either walk to Moscone Center, approximately six blocks away, or they can catch either of Muni’s 30 or 45 lines, which stop right across from the train station on Fourth Street. They can get off at Third and Folsom, and the Moscone Center is just a block away at 747 Howard St.

The last southbound train leaves San Francisco at 12:01 a.m., which leaves plenty of time for the most ardent Mac user to spend a full day at the expo and spend some time sight-seeing or dining in The City as well.

Secure bicycle parking is available at the new bike station at the 4th & King Caltrain Station in San Francisco. Caltrain schedule and fare information is available at Caltrain website. Leave a comment here at Cyclelicious if you have a specific question about riding Caltrain.

BART considers increased bike lockers fees

The Bay Area Rapid Transit system considered increasing the annual locker fees charged at BART stations and introducing an hourly charge for lockers with electronic locks. For details, read the Examiner.

Infrequent BART users should also be warned that BART recently changed its service to SFO Airport. You can no longer head straight to SFO from Millbrae Caltrain, but now must go to San Bruno then backtrack to the airport. Regular travelers to SFO have discovered it's faster to get off Caltrain in Hillsdale then take a bus to the airport.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Inverse recumbent

Oof. From Modern Mechanix via Empathy Test.

The text of the article from 1936 about this bike says:
Natural streamlining is accomplished in a new type of bicycle designed in England for use on speedways. Aware of the discomfort suffered by racers who must remain humped up over their machines for long periods due to air resistance, the designer has placed the drive pedals behind the rear wheels. The handlebars are lowered almost to the level of the front axle.

In this posture the rider is almost horizontal to the ground and in a naturally streamlined position. It is believed the new machine will produce speeds far in excess of anything yet accomplished.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Japanese interest in American bike commuters

While we go all ga ga over Danish bike commuters, the Japanese are fascinated with all things American, even American bicycle commuters.

The Asahi Shinbun newspaper in Japan printed this article today about bike commuters in Silicon Valley and about the increased acceptance in the Valley of the Clean and Green Action Plan. The article also mentions the bike commuting incentive at Juniper Networks, which has one of the top bike incentive programs in the Bay Area. Juniper provides bike racks at every building, bike lockers at the main building, private (!!) showers, and an emergency ride home program. In addition, Juniper offers a $20 spending card for every 10 bike commutes that can be used in the campus cafeteria.

Props to my Japanese cycling friend at Hole in the Wall.

Interbike Outdoor Demo East scheduled October 21-22, 2008

Interbike Outdoor Demo East - October 21-22, 2008. Roger Williams Park, Providence, RI

Interbike announced today that they will host the first annual Interbike Outdoor Demo East Tuesday, October 21 to Wednesday, October 22, 2008, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Roger Williams Park in Providence, R.I.

The Interbike Outdoor Demo East event is based on the Interbike Outdoor Demo held in conjunction with the Interbike International Bicycle Expo in Las Vegas and will include product testing, National Bicycle Dealers Association (NBDA) seminars and networking events. The new event is aimed at servicing retailers who do not attend and/or additional staff members who are not able to participate in the Interbike International Expo and Outdoor Demo.

"We recognize there are members of the industry that have difficulties attending the Interbike Expo in Las Vegas," said Lance Camisasca, Interbike's industry consultant. "Interbike Outdoor Demo East is a hands-on, no-hassle, inexpensive regional style event that allows retailers to not only test new products but also educate staff members on the latest trends and network with industry members in a historic and event friendly location."

Manufacturers who have already committed to exhibit at the event include Advanced Sports (Fuji, SE Racing, Kestrel), Fox Racing Shox, Giant Bicycles, Kenda USA, Pacific Cycle (GT, Schwinn, Mongoose), Pedro's Total Bicycle Care and Santa Cruz Bicycles, with more expected to follow in the coming weeks.

"Interbike always produces a great trade event," said Pat Cunnane, president of Advanced Sports "We're confident OutDoor Demo East will be a great event as well and we are looking forward to giving our East Coast retailers another opportunity to learn about and test ride our products."

"The genesis of an opportunity to reach out to the other half of cycling is perfect," said Chris Zigmont, general manager of Pedro's Total Bicycle Care. "We will now be able to meet with the guys and gals who work the shop floor and who can't attend Interbike's Las Vegas trade show because of time and money constraints."

"We've had great feedback on our Super Seminars around the country and attendance has exceeded expectations," said Fred Clements, executive director of the National Bicycle Dealers Association. "By partnering with Interbike at Outdoor Demo East, we feel we'll be able to offer high quality sessions in a convenient setting that will allow us to reach an even larger audience in a region that deserves the support."

The 450 acre Roger Williams Park is located just south of downtown Providence and has been the host city for the 2006 and 2007 National Cyclocross Championships. In addition to being a great place for cycling, Providence is a central location for Northeast and Mid Atlantic retails and is easily accessible by most forms of transportation.

SF Bay Area: Learn to make metal fenders by hand

Ooh, you can learn to create your own Honjo-style fenders! From TechShop:
Learn the principles and practice of cutting and forming simple and compound curves and shapes from aluminum and light-gage sheet-metal material without molten metal, flames and expensive molds etc. Use an English wheel, shrinker/stretcher, air-planishing hammer, delrin shaping hammers and beater bags provided. Through tool demonstrations, you'll shape, form, harden and fabricate a custom bike fender in class. Other tools and techniques as well as your project and future classes will be discussed.
See TechShop for class schedule and more info.

TechShop is a fully-equipped open-access workshop and creative environment that lets you drop in any time and work on your own projects at your own pace. It is like a health club with tools and equipment instead of exercise equipment...or a Kinko's for geeks.

TechShop was founded in 2006 by Jim Newton, a lifetime maker, veteran BattleBots builder and former MythBuster. TechShop is located in Menlo Park, California, on the San Francisco peninsula 25 miles south of San Francisco.

Anyone can come in and build and make all kinds of things themselves using the TechShop tools, machines and equipment, and draw on the TechShop instructors and experts to help them with their projects.

TechShop is designed for everyone, regardless of their skill level. TechShop is perfect for inventors, "makers", hackers, tinkerers, artists, roboteers, families, entrepreneurs, youth groups, FIRST robotic teams, arts and crafts enthusiasts, and anyone else who wants to be able to make things that they dream up but don't have the tools, space or skills.

The TechShop workshop provides a wide variety of machinery and tools for the open and unlimited use of its members, including milling machines and lathes, welding stations and plasma cutters, sheet metal working equipment, drill presses and band saws, industrial sewing machines, hand tools, plastic working equipment, electronics design and fabrication facilities, tubing and metal bending machines, electrical supplies and tools, and pretty much everything you'd ever need to make just about anything all by yourself.

Props to Alison for this information.

Dan Yergin fan club

People who know about Peak Oil know the name Daniel Yergin. Yergin founded the Cambridge Energy Research Energy Associates (CERA) to provide analysis and research on energy issues. Every major oil company, most minor ones, and almost any government and private agency with energy planning needs purchases research from CERA.

Apparently, CERA and Yergin are apparently an inside joke among oil experts who seemingly take his numbers and predictions with a grain of salt. Yergin consistently forecasts lower oil prices and consistently gets it wrong. Last June, for example, CERA predicted $60 oil by the beginning of 2008 because that's what the "fundamentals" support. As everybody knows, we're at $100 with no hurricanes or other large disasters affecting our supply. Yergin and CERA consistently promote the fantastic idea that oil companies can producers 110 million barrels per day within the next decade.

In spite of CERA's dismal track record, the media consistently turns to CERA as a "highly respected" expert on oil prices and oil futures, with Yergin cited as "one of the world's foremost experts on energy." There doesn't seem to be a sense of history or accountability for journalists who accept Yergin's credentials (a PhD and a Pulitzer) without checking his history. He's undoubtedly a brilliant guy, but the facts are clear that the numbers from CERA just don't add up.

Inspiring Green Leadership

Speaking of Peak Oil, I met Andre Angelantoni yesterday at the Eco Summit yesterday in Santa Clara. Andre is the founder of Inspiring Green Leadership, which seeks to encourage individuals and businesses to make the changes that will be required in a world that is increasingly resource constrained. Andre introduced the idea of Peak Oil to the program participants.

Angelantoni encourages everybody with an interest in sustainability to become leaders during this time of coming change. He encourages these leaders to help create communities that are self sustaining, with roles in transportation, food production, power use reduction, and health care. Besides his own website, he pointed conference participants to The Oil Drum, Relocalize and Oil Depletion Protocol.

Pedal powered spud launcher

Thanks to Fat Boy Biking for this: a human powered spud gun. Littleton, Colorado rocket scientist Bill Llewellin is a founding member of the Denver Mad Scientist club and likes to build all kinds of human powered contraptions from garage sale parts.

See the video of the spud gun in action.

While we're talking geeky gadgets, Bike Hugger has posted a handful of reports from the Consumer Electronics Show, where Vegas traffic is so gridlocked and parking so unavailable that bicycling is the only way to travel.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Team BMC dinner

While I was getting stuck in the mud on the newly opened section of the Guadulupe River Trail in San Jose, my buddy Ken made it to the Team BMC dinner at Hobees in Palo Alto tonight. He took some photos and got their top secret training plans for the Tour of California.

According to Ken, you can find them cycling up Mount Hamilton on Friday afternoon, and scoping out the first stage route from Sausalito to Santa Rosa on Monday. Read Ken's blog for details.

Those are BMC Team cyclists Jackson Stewart (by the window), Mike Sayers and Taylor Tolleson in the photo above. Photo courtesy Ken Conley.

Innovation with bicycles

What a really really cool idea: Ride your bike to the store, grab a shopping cart and fill it with groceries, pay for the groceries, then roll the cart out to the parking lot, where you hook it to your bicycle.
Shoppers at a Cambridge supermarket are being asked to saddle up for a new green initiative.

Waitrose in Hauxton Road, Trumpington, has teamed up with the city council to provide special trailers to allow cyclists to transport their shopping home using pedal power.

Shoppers will be able to fill up a trailer as they walk around the store and simply hitch it onto the back of their bikes when they have paid.

The free-of-charge trailer will then have to be returned within three days.
Read the full story here. Via Grist.

A fun bicycle powered tennis ball launcher. Via.

Here's something cool I saw today: A backpack with a built in solar panel.

Solar powered backpack

I can potentially use this to recharge batteries for my lights or camera while I'm cycling to work. It will be available at the company store in a few weeks, I'm told. Seen at the 2008 Eco Summit.

Urban Velo describes Bilinky's S & S couplings, while James @ Bicycle Design contemplates breakaway frames for biking during his travels.