Saturday, June 27, 2009

Track Races Tonight, Polo tomorrow, Taco's Leaving

After a hiatus of weddings and ice cream rides, Flat Track Races resume tonight at East High School at 7pm. I'm changing my gearing after work. Hopefully I'll have some competition.

Bicycle Polo also resumes Sunday at 5pm behind The Peddler on Highland. Travis from Baton Rouge will probably be out to play. The other part of my polo brain (Chase) is out touring right now so you'll have a chance to score. Just some pickup games, everyone is welcome and we have extra mallets.

After that we'll hop across the street to RP Tracks at about 9 for Anthony's going away party. Hope to see you all out.

Friday, June 26, 2009

4th of July Full Details

I made mention of Kyle's 4th of July party in a previous post so he hooked me up with all of the pertinent info:

Kyle and Carrie's 4th of July Extravaganza and Night of Mayhem

Start Time:
Saturday, July 4, 2009 at 4:00pm

End Time:
Sunday, July 5, 2009 at 2:00am

Wagenschutz Manor
1962 Walker Avenue
Memphis, TN

It is once again time for the Wagenschutz Annual Mid-Summer Blowout! Come hang out, bring some food, bring some drinks, bring some bikes, bring some friends!

We will have some food available, but please bring some to share. The grill will be available for cooking on as well.

Plan on playing some games in the backyard as well as some water activities.

As always - the fireworks battle will probably ensue. Bring your weapon of choice. No rules death match, except no fireworks in the house this year. While the fusia-colored stain in the carpet from last year's smoke bomb attack is a great conversation starter, it does nothing for the aesthetic of the carpet.

Around 8:00-8:30 we will ride our bikes downtown to watch the fireworks on the river bluff.

Call me with any questions (901) 258-3130.

After that tomfoolery there is a party at Odessa. It's Taylor and Shelby's birthday party so be aware that it will be rowdy with much stinkfisting.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Rip: A Remix Manifesto

If you're not heading to the co-op tonight to work on your bike or help someone else work on theirs I would like to invite you to see this film:


It's a documentary about copyright laws and infringement in this modern age. From the Brooks website:

Join the Brooks and Indie Memphis for a thought provoking film and
discussion on about copyright and remix culture. In this award-winning
documentary, web activist and filmmaker Brett Gaylor explores issues of
copyright in the information age, which are shattering the wall between
users and producers. Also featured are mash-up musician Girl Talk; Creative
Commons founder Lawrence Lessig; Brazil’s Minister of Culture Gilberto Gil;
and pop culture critic Cory Doctorow. Are the issues about people power or
piracy? With RiP: A Remix Manifesto, Gaylor draws the lines of battle.
Which side of the ideas war are you on?

Free for members, $5 for non-members. Film starts at 7:30pm.

After the film Cameron Mann from Lord T. et Eloise will be leading a discussion.

After that we'll go ride bicycles.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Last chance to ride

with Chase and Jevans happens tomorrow. We're probably going to take it pretty easy then go for a swim. Dudes leave THURSDAY!!!

Your summer is filling up

I got a call from AB "Chomps" last night. He's coming in town for the 4th of July. For those who haven't heard, there will be a cookout at Kyle's house again this year. And just like last year, I'm sure there will be a firecraker/waterballoon battle just like there was last year. No firecrackers in the house this time. Seriously f'realz. So after that we'll ride downtown to watch the fireworks. Then probably find a pool to crash after that. I'm sure AB will want to throw down on some polo on Sunday if he's still in town.

So anyways, he also told me about a 'cat in Pensacola:

Hopefully Memphis can send a group down to have some fun.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Bicycle Weekend in Huntsville, AL

This weekend Huntsville will host their first annual Bicycle Weekend complete with an art show, alleycat, bike polo and vintage ride.

Check the website for details on the other events.

Colnago Museum Tour with Ernesto!

BikeRadar has posted a few videos about Colnago bicycles and a particularly interesting one in which Ernesto Colnago himself takes you around his museum pointing out and talking about some of his favorites. Check it out here.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Worst of Craigslist #1

Welcome to a new feature on fixmemphis: Worst of Craigslist. From time to time we will bring you the best of the worst ads from the Memphis Craigslist bike page. Let's get started shall we? Today we have this bike:

It's the worst for one reason and one reason only. Do you see it? No, it's not the extremely nose down seat. Look again. Look closer. You guessed it:

The handlebars are wrapped half with foam, half with electrical tape. Would you pay $540 for that? Didn't think so.

Let's talk about fixed gear chainlines.

A trusted customer came into the shop the other day with a fixed gear conversion. He purchased said bike from a "bargain" bike seller who shall remain nameless. I don't recall how much he paid for the bike but it included the frame/fork, BB, crankset, handlebars (flopped and chopped), and a wheelset with a flip-flop hub.

Several things struck me as out of the ordinary: the axle on the rear wheel had some extra nuts that didn't match in width to each other. Most of us know that a flip-flop hub has a 120mm spacing. Older model road bikes have a 126mm rear spacing. Simple math tells us this is a difference of 6mm, which is 3mm on each side. It is perfectly fine to tighten the axle nuts that 3mm. You won't mess up the frame. If you add extra nuts you are in effect pushing the cog further away which will result in a off chainline. Of course that chainline also depends on the BB length and crankset you are using. Every crankset sold now will have a recommended BB length for its intended application. Most fixed gear cranksets run anywhere from a 102mm to a 110mm, while road bikes can run from 110mm to 122mm. I don't know what the BB length was on this bike because I didn't measure it, but let's guess it was a 117mm. Obviously you need to run your chainring on the inside of the spider to get your chainline as straight as possible, which brings up the other item about this bike that I found odd: the chainring was run on the inside of the spider but the chainring bolts were intened for a double chainring. Obviously that means they are longer. Instead of using chainring bolt spacers this "bargain" bike seller used washers. Honestly, that will work fine provided the washers are small enough so they don't hit the spider.

These things combined (mis-spaced rear hub, longer BB) will result in a chainline that is way off. What happens when your chainline is off? Unnecessary wear on the chain, chainring and cog and your chain could pop off or break resulting in serious injury or even death.

If your bike looks like this you should take it to a qualified mechanic at one of your local bicycle shops and have them fix the problem or take it back to the seller and get your money back. I wouldn't ride it and no shop would sell it.

Going Away Party Tonight

Tonight for the Thursday night ride we will start at Isaiah's house at the normal time: 10ish; ride to UofM area over to Chase's house where there will be some sort of shindig to wish Dennis, Jevans, and Chase a safe journey. Next week they leave on their ride across the states to San Francisco.

See you tonight!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Flat Track... ATTACK!!!

Several people have come into the shop and asked when we were going to restart the flat track races. The answer is: Tomorrow, Saturday, June 13th (provided the weather is suitable).

You remember the pace lines:

The heat:

The bib shorts:

It's time to do it all again. With even more bib shorts.

Meet-up is at East High School at around 7pm. We'll do a couple of races, drink a couple of pints of water, and see how fast Chase is on his new Pake.

This one's for the Ladies

So, you know when you're about to go out with your fine boyfriend and you wanna look super cute but you also wanna ride your bike? Well, i purchased an amazing versatile purse from Urban Outfitters about a month ago that can easily be changed from a backpack to a purse(any length)to a messenger bag-and it's pink (and i just found out it comes in four colors now!-i think i'll get the maroon, too)! I've received so many comments on it that i wanted to share the wealth. So ditch your day bag and head out with these great finds! Enjoi!

My bag is here.

Or find a similar style here.

Bicycle Valet Only the Beginning

Ever wonder what it would be like to have a bicycle parking lot packed with attendants, showers, classes and all? Well, some Californians now don't have to wonder. For a small monthly or yearly fee, riders enjoy the luxury of knowing their bike is safe and secure. One customer commented that the attendants are so nice they even fill up her tires while she's at work-for free of course.

Read the entire article here.

A Template for Tennessee

A survey in Washington, D.C. is asking their Federal employees to gauge their employers to see just how health-conscious and bike-friendly they are. I'm assuming they are planning on facilitating some great new incentives to excite their employees to get on commuting by bicycle! The survey includes questions like shower availabilty to what the streets look like on their routes.

Check out the full survey here.

Steven Marmo - One in eight million

Steven Marmo: Bar Fighter is part of a photo essay series at the New York Times documenting the lives of New Yorkers, one at a time. Steven is an iron worker who used to stir things up, until he started riding bikes and got his mind right. This is a fantastic essay, check it out, yo.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

This Thursday Night!

This Thursday will be several people's last Thursday Night Ride for a while. Chase, Dennis and Jevans will be leaving for their tour soon, Anthony is taking off to travel the world, and Josh Gorman is moving to Washington, DC! This will just be a fun ride, moderately paced, all are welcome. Come wish your friends happy trails!

bicycle,memphis,fixed gear

Monday, June 8, 2009

Bicycle Film Festival, Memphis

Life Cycles: Bike Film Festival celebrates role of cycling culture in city

By Anthony Siracusa

Monday, June 8, 2009

In nearly 40 cities across four continents over the next three months, bicycle lovers will watch a slew of independent films featuring bikes used in familiar and unfamiliar ways.

The movies are a part of the Bicycle Film Festival, an international celebration of bicycle culture now in its ninth year. The last weekend in May, Memphis became the first city to host the 2009 Bicycle Film Fest, and the only Southern city scheduled to host the three days of films and festivities.

"I had a dream that people would really feel a presence over the weekend of cyclists," said local organizer Alona Lerman. "One of the most important parts of the festival was the bike valet, because you had 100 bicycles locked up. The statement that all those bikes made was a big part of our message."

Lerman brought the film festival to Memphis as a fun way of promoting the "bicycle as a recognized and accepted form of transportation."

The Brooks Museum of Art acted as the hub for the events, which featured two evenings packed with more than two dozen film screenings, a bicycle block party in Overton Park and a rock show at Murphy's featuring local acts The Warble and the River City Tanlines.

"The Bicycle Film Festival was a celebration of the bicycle culture around the world," said Kyle Wagenschutz, director of Revolutions Community Bicycle Shop. "It was a celebration of what the bicycle can do as far as creating community and changing people's lives. It showed us how other cities are using bicycles, which for Memphis -- a city on the precipice of many (bike-friendly) changes -- was encouragement. It was sort of a fire-starter."

For many, the Bicycle Film Fest made concrete the potential of the bicycle. Used for laughs, for competition, for art's sake and for transportation, the bicycle was employed in film after film, country after country, in ways that pointed to the diversity within bicycle culture. As a result, the film festival struck a chord within a variety of people. The event's Web site boasts, "we are into all styles of bikes and biking. . . . What better way to celebrate these lifestyles than through art, film, music and performance?"

Because Memphis' bicycle culture continues to expand its boundaries, growing in popularity especially among young people, the city appeared attractive for festival organizers.

Memphis was also an apt setting for the festival according to co-organizer Corey Kennedy. "We do have a very diverse bicycling culture here. Cycling, in general, crosses many lines. It doesn't matter (what your occupation), if you ride a bicycle, there is a common bond. We had so many people from different walks of life and different states (at the festival). The bicycle is kind of a barrier breaker."

By all accounts, the film festival was a grand slam, and one organizers plan to duplicate and grow next year. Amidst the flowers showing off their beautiful colors in Overton Park, Memphis' bicycle culture appeared also to be in full bloom.

Memphian Anthony Siracusa is a graduate of Rhodes College and founder of Revolutions Community Bicycle Shop. He has been awarded a fellowship from the Thomas J. Watson Foundation to travel for a year to study bicycle communities on four continents. Contact him through

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Friday, June 5, 2009

Chicken before the egg - safer riding with numbers

For years cycling advocates have said that cycling becomes safer when more people ride. Well, now we have data to back that statement up.

From 1998-2008, daily ridership in NYC slightly more than doubled (rising to 180k from 80k). In that same period the number of annual cycling casualties fell by nearly half from 5000 to 2700. The more people ride, the safer riding becomes for everyone. The average cyclist in NYC is now four times less likely to be injured while riding than they were ten years ago.

Think about this. Every person you convince to ride their bike as often as you, makes you four times as safe.

Put the word out, save some lives.

Streetsblog via kottke

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Driven Magazine Story Re-Post

Thanks to everyone who came out last Thursday for the Driven Magazine photo shoot. Terie didn't get to interview everyone so she would still like you to fill out the questions below and send them to her. Not me.


1) Who are you? Name (or alias), age, day job?
2) How’d you get into fixed gear cycling?
3) How often do you ride your fixed gear now?
a. I ride it in alleycats and other events
b. I ride it every weekend.
c. I commute to work and some other places when the weather’s nice.
d. I don’t own a car. My bike is fused to my feet.
e. Other: please explain
4) Tell me your favorite thing about fixed gear biking.
5) Tell me your least favorite thing about it.
6) In a sentence or two or four, describe the culture that surrounds fixed gear cycling…for example, if someone rides a fixed gear bike, they also probably:
7) What else do you have to say about it? Let loose!

I've ALMOST fully recovered.

I've still got a nasty cough that produces lots of green mucus, but at least my voice is back!

Here's the link to the Flickr Pool for everyone's Memphis BFF photos. Go add your own pictures and comment on everyone elses.

I know I had a great time and I've recieved lots of positive feedback from everyone who attended. Next year in Memphis will be even better. Until then I'm sure a lot of us will be heading down to New Orleans for their festival.

Oh yeah, one more thing...

I'm on a OAK!

Edit: Michael Green from BikeBlogNYC interviewed me before the festival and he just posted my recap of the weekend.

Check the interview here:
And the recap here:

Monday, June 1, 2009

Beer for recovery, not energy

It's better to drink beer after exercise than water say Spanish scientists.

Garzon said that the rehydration effection in those who were given beer was "slightly better" than those who were given only water. He also believes that the carbon dioxide in beer helps quench thirst more quickly, and that beer's carbohydrates replace calories lost during physical exertion.
Based on the results of the study, researchers recommend moderate consumption of beer as a part of athletes' diets. "Moderate consumption" for men is 500ml per day, and for women is 250ml per day.

I'm glad we've been doing it right all this time.

(Some) BFF Pictures

Check out some photos taken this weekend on the Brooks Museum of Memphis' Flickr here!