Thursday, April 29, 2010

Cargo Bike Conversion

Take it to the next level! You can now convert your bike into a cargo bike and haul 100+ lbs of goodies! The Zaftig from Jacobs Green Solutions is an adjustable steertube length fork that uses a 20" wheel to convert your regular bike into a truck bike!

From the pic it looks like the best brake option is disc. It looks like V's would come up through the rack area and a canti cable would come down through, not to mention you would need a headset cable guide to run the cantis. I suppose all of that would be fine if you planned on leaving the fork on all the time, but what would be better than a quick conversion? All you need is a hinged clamp front brake lever and then you can rock down to cargo avenue!

The fork retails at $200 plus $25 for whichever brake mount you choose. I really do recommend running brakes. If you're hauling 100 lbs of stuff you don't want to have to rely on your rear brake or your legs!

You're probably asking yourself, "Where do I get a 20" front disc brake wheel?" Recumbents! Or you can just get a disc hub and build it on a BMX rim. You know those jams come in all kinds of colors. Colored spokes, too!

Imagine how much beer you can carry!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Magnolia Cycles

For those that don't know: Magnolia Cycles is Mike Crum, local Memphis frame builder and amazing-dude-in-general. Last week when we spoke he was about 5 people deep on a frame waiting list. Scope his beautiful bikes on his flickr:

Originally uploaded by Magnolia Cycles

Mike will be returning as a vendor to the Bicycle Film Festival this May where you'll be able to see his wonderful craftsmanship in person.

Art Bikes

Some friends (you might know them as Electrocity) and I are are working on an exhibition of Art Bikes. We haven't set a date yet but I wanted to give you the heads up so you can start working on something. To whet your appetite check this Mike Giant x Bahati Bike, as seen on Hypebeast:
Originally uploaded by RIDE_CANNONDALE

You know that's the Di2 jam, right?

Huntsville Lucky Cat - June 5th

Our friends in Huntsville are at it again! Looks like a great time with a lot of great sponsors!

More info here.

Beyond The Motor City

May 13, 2010
7:00 pm (Doors at 6:30 pm)
University Center Theatre
The University of Memphis
First Floor, University Center
Memphis, TN 38152
Director Aaron Woolf in attendance!
Get there on public transit!

The film's issues are an exploration of how America's historic decisions to invest in highways and automotive infrastructure has come, in many cities -- and particularly in Detroit -- at the expense of safe biking and walking, sustainable development, and urban vitality. While focusing on the hard lessons learned in Detroit, the film also offers the hope that America's cities are now uniquely poised to shine a spotlight on -- and to offer sustainable and cutting-edge solutions to -- our nation's transportation obstacles.

The screening is free, and director Aaron Woolf will be in attendance after the film to answer questions.

More information about Beyond the Motor City and the Blueprint America Screening Tour can also be found at:

Ban on Texting While Driving

From an email I received from the League of American Bicyclists:

The Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is proposing a ban on texting while driving by commercial drivers: any type of truck or bus used for interstate commerce including school bus drivers. This unfortunately does not apply to all vehicles. From the DOT:

SUMMARY: The Federal Motor Carrier
Safety Administration (FMCSA)
proposes to prohibit texting by
commercial motor vehicle (CMV)
drivers while operating in interstate
commerce and to impose sanctions,
including civil penalties and
disqualification from operating CMVs in
interstate commerce, for drivers who fail
to comply with this rule. Additionally,
motor carriers would be prohibited from
requiring or allowing their drivers to
engage in texting while driving. FMCSA
also proposes amendments to its
commercial driver’s license (CDL)
regulations to add to the list of
disqualifying offenses a conviction
under State or local laws, regulations, or
ordinances that prohibit texting by CDL
drivers while operating a CMV,
including school bus drivers. Recent
research commissioned by FMCSA
shows that the odds ratio of being
involved in a safety-critical event (e.g.,
crash, near-crash, lane departure) is 23.2
times greater for drivers who engage in
texting while driving than for those who
do not. This rulemaking would increase
safety on the Nation’s highways by
reducing the prevalence of or preventing
certain truck- and bus-related crashes,
fatalities, and injuries associated with
distracted driving.

Comments on this proposed ban are being taken until May 3rd. The LAB has drafted a comment here which you can copy and paste to the comments form.

Friday, April 23, 2010


Yeah, Thursday night ride was a FAIL as far as trying to preset a route.

Two of the pedestrian bridges I had planned were locked, and the one alternate we did had bums sleeping on it and there was a downed tree on the offramp.
TNR 011

I think people were kind of confused about the weird route we took to get everywhere.
TNR 014

At least Ted didn't lose a crank arm this ride!
TNR 007

Thursday, April 22, 2010

It's not called Thursday Night Destination

It's the Thursday Night Ride. 3 is the magic number. 3 Pedestrian Bridges, 3 Garages, 3 Kings.

I just spent the last ten minutes googling an image that should show up automatically, but still haven't found. Bring your cameras tonight.

Leaving from Revolutions at 9pm.

Sunday, April 18, 2010


Back in the day when I was a teenager, before I had status and before I had a track bike, I rode skateboards. I would sit in chemistry class and dream of lines, sequential tricks that I could hit at my favorite spots. Those were my favorite parts of videos as well. Sure, the big stairs and gaps were cool but a long line shows a riders imagination and skill.

After seeing Shred-Well from The Grime I was totally impressed with the way trick track riding is going. There are lots of lines and lots of big stuff, as in 15-stair big.

SHRED-WELL from Mike Schmitt on Vimeo.

I also really love when riders use their environment, pulling tricks where you never expect it. That's part of the reason I switched to singlespeed. Riding is about having fun as well as commuting. When I'm riding fixed I feel as though I'm just pedaling. If I were to try a trick I would have to slow down and make sure my feet are in the right position. With a singlespeed I don't slow down, and with 35mm cross tires I plow through whatever I want, allowing me to use even more of my environment, the non-paved part.

Really though, fixed, singlespeed, whatever. It's practical. I can commute, I can do tricks on the same bike.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Thursday Night Ride Recap

Last week wasn't my best week. Not as bad as this week for Ted:

Last week, I really sucked on account of my bike being more for the trails. This week, CP30 fixed up my trainer bike so i can change gears on those stupid, useless hills and not get wiped out so quickly (i'm not known for my endurance). The highlight of the ride was definitely the greenline. i'll be doing that again fo sho. I hadn't seen it yet and it was so much more awesome than i imagined. And i have a near-perfect imagination. I also have a strong attraction to dirt and mud. purrr.

Riding with my two buddy girls was fun, too (shout out to Lor and Erica). They make me feel better about being slow and the aformetnioned hated hills. I love how Erica and i always discuss the latest in clothing and dessert; the two most important topics. ever. I also enjoyed meeting some new faces and i hope i don't have to work EVERY freaking thursday night so i can enjoy more of these summa tours.

When we got home i chugged a dr.pepper cherry and passed out. i awoke Friday refreshed and thinner, which is a big plus, since i ate nothing but pizza covered in pizza covered in ice cream on thursday. So, thank you to everyone that came out on Thursday-you helped make this week one of my most enjoyable rides!

More pictures on Chopper's flickr

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Death march, v&e, then towards downtown to a secret spot. Leave from revolutions @ 9pm.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

So you think your bike is hot?

Prove it.


Click the pic to go to my flickr for a larger version. Tell your friends and anyone you know with a vintage or unique bike.

Really, we are fixing Memphis

Bicycling Magazine just released it's list of the Top 50 Bike-Friendly Cities. Memphis is no where on the list. But a simple search for 'worst bike cities' on the website reveals Memphis as #2. You have probably heard about this.

What you may not have heard about is the work that everyone is doing to change that:

MATA (Memphis Area Transit Authority) has installed bike racks on their buses. The website says 34% but in a recent meeting John Lancaster said that about 136 buses or 85% of the buses have bike racks.

The Memphis & Shelby County Health Department Pollution Control, Air Quality Improvement Branch has set up a rideshare program that can now pair you with a bike buddy. Once you register you can even see how much money you save and your environmental impact by choosing how you commuted that day. forinstance, the 8 trips I've commuted in April have had a 33.74 lb reduction in greenhouse gases.

The CCC (Center City Commission) is coordinating a grand scale Bike To Work Day for May 21st. The goal is to help people make that first step and show them how easy it is to commute by bicycle. City officials like Councilman Shea Flinn are expected to ride!

And then there are columns in the Commercial Appeal calling for a "Motorist-bicyclist Utopia."

Cooper-Young plans to have the first real "in-city" bike lanes.

Greater Memphis Greenline, Inc. has already broken ground on a 6.5 mile section of unused rail lines to be converted to a hike/bike path. In the future they plan to use that greenline as well as others to connect Overton Park, The Fairgounds, and other midtown destinations to Shelby Farms and beyond.

These are just SOME of the efforts to make Memphis more bike-friendly. So it's not like Memphis is trying to be in last place. Changing takes a lot of people with positive attitudes. Get in touch with one of the groups above to see how you can help fix Memphis.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Shopping Trips

Last week, due to my impressive powers of persuaion, I convinced Emily that we should ride our bikes to the grocery store. Really I think she only agreed because I agreed to go to Home Depot and get some paint so we could paint our apartment. 'No prob,' I said and thought that we could just make one outing: Home Depot then grocery store. After all, what is the use of a trailer if I can't haul a large amount? It turns out that a couple of gallons of paint weighs a little more that I had anticipated.

Shopping 003

So we dropped the paint at the apartment and headed out for trip #2: the grocery store.

Shopping 012

The Bob drysac would barely close over all of the groceries. There's no way I could have fit all of the paint and the groceries in one trip. Emily even took her cruiser bike with the front basket (which she just used for her purse and cardigan). Perhaps I should maybe get her a cute wicker basket for the rear rack?

Shopping 006

I felt bad for pushing Emily to do this with me, but because she was smiling once we got out riding and this past week she's been telling me that she is excited for the next time we go to the grocery store, I don't feel bad at all. I'm partly attributing her good experience to the beautiful weather and the Memphis drivers who are becoming more aware of cyclists, though.

Friday, April 2, 2010


I originally sent this via my phone so it looked kind of funk, what with no line breaks and poor puncuation, so I've edited it for your haiku enjoyment:

Pollen on the streets
riding through puddles, tires change
yellow black yellow