Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Stolen bike

This bike was stolen from a garage in San Francisco last night, contact me if it is seen. thanks

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Touring of different varieties

Two touring bikes of late, one fairly traditional 700c, rim braked drop bar bike shown sideways below. Blogger is a pain that way when phone posting and I'm not super savvy here. Cool bike that will be ridden across the country this summer. Traditional panniers and racks make for easy loading and lots of capacity.
This bike made me think more about racks and bags when making the next bike for myself. Most of the touring I do has a fair ammount of dirt in it and I prefer minimal baggage for better ride quality and moto ability. This one is a propper 29" mountain bike with big tire clearance. Main things of interest here are the racks and the bag setup. Although the custom bikepacking bags are top notch, I dislike some things about them, particularly how high the weight is and how hard it can be to load them. My racks and bags rely on plastic surrounds which are screwed to the racks to both protect the thin silnylon dry bags and to ease the frustration of loading. The small size of the racks keeps things light and the mass is fairly well centralized. Please forgive the sideways photos, will try to edit after this is posted.
In other news, two of my shopmates moved out, rack master Matt Feeney to the wilds of Oakland and Wayne to the burbs. I miss these folks dearly but the space is amazing particularly with the production run of Black Mountain Cycles cross bikes which is coming soon from my enterprise. Super excited to be working with Mike Varley, top notch guy and a neat project. Check for more info. Thanks

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Cross Season, Cargo and Miscellaneous Things

Been a long time since I touched this here blog thing, somehow the actual making of things, paying bills, riding and racing pushes computer time to the back burner. As Steve Garro said, "The haunted fish tank tells lies" and it does.
Since May lots has happened, biggest news in my world was the formation of a new cross team, Fresh Air-Hunter Cycles, Fresh Air ( being the excellent shop owned by long time supporter of the scene Travis T and Hunter Cycles ( needs no introduction.  Great team, good season for me and I am ready for a break and some winter mileage, check out the team Tumblr:

Lots of random things to be covered in this post, here goes...

Latest project out of my shop is the cargo bike below.  Lots of questions from folks on this one, so here is a sort of FAQ on this monster.
Q What is it?
A Essentially it is a Longjohn with the addition of a top tube, an overarm is how I keep thinking of it, and overarm being the thing that supports the end of an arbor on a horizontal milling machine (nerd alert).

Q Why?
A Stronger, potentially lighter and hauls 95% of what a Longjohn does, allows for new and unique carrying techniques by slinging things from the overarm, also and this is big, steers much more "normal" with the two straight steering rods.

Q How much can it carry?
A You will get tired of pedaling it before you overload the structure.

This is the first prototype, next iteration forthcoming. This fine machine is for sale, contact falconer cycles@gmail for info.
 The picture below is of the best thing to happen to my cross bike in ages, Paul Components sweet new Mini Moto brake, shown here on the back of my ancient-by-race-bike standards Hunter, seven seasons and still kicking, steel being real and all.  With disks still in beta for cross and the weather here in the Bay Area rather un-cross like these things are the deal, power, power, power.  Late braking greatness with none of the weight penalty of disks, or the need for a new bike.  Disks are coming for sure but I think brakes like these will always have a place in cross due to the simplicity, low cost and on the fly dial ability. Case in point: at the last Santa Rosa race on Saturday, riders with Avid mechanicals were running out of pad and I was able to dial out the barrels on my Paul's while riding, neat.

The red bike below is something I recently made for a customer of Fresh Air.  Interesting bike in these modern times, a 26" rigid mountain bike with super 80's style geometry.  Primarily it will be a commuter, long and slack and mellow, should slide nice in the dirt as well.  Interesting as it is the first 26" bike other than cargo that I have made, times have changed for sure.

Lots going on in the background of this photo, you can see the cargo bike fixtured on the table through the rear triangle, our shops lathe, shipping boxes for my shop mate Matt Feeney's rack empire ( and our lovely fluorescent lighting. Would be nice to have some trees to photograph bikes in but all the ones in the neighborhood are confined to little holes in the sidewalk.

With the world ending tomorrow (or not....) I want to thank some folks who have been helpful in myriad ways in the development of my tiny little empire. In no particular order:
Rick Hunter for 15 years of cross support, inspiration, fabrication and design advice and sweet bikes
Wade Beauchamp, ( badass welder, built my first complete bike in his shop
Matt Feeney, aforementioned  mastermind of Pass and Stow racks, shop mate, smart guy.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Little orange bike

As it says, a little orange bike, in this case a cross bike for an old friend, the great Bridget May. Bridget has always had bikes with small wheels, this is the first 700c bike for her. Nice parts all around, DT240s hubs on Velocity a23 rims, Force drivetrain and the super cool and curvy new Paul Minimoto cross brake. I was fortunate enough to get one during cross season and it is the finest cross stopper I have used. Assembling this bike was neat, I have been out of the bike shop for some years now and haven't put together a bike of all new parts recently. I was struck by the general ease of use. No loose bearings, no fiddly cantilevers. Pretty much ran the cables and that was it. I know this isn't exactly news, nice new stuff is, well, nice, but it is worth reflecting on how little this stuff asks of us as mechanics. Adjust the bb, the hubs. Huh? No need, all done and for that matter, you couldn't if you wanted to. Compare this to say a Super Record bike and the pie chart of what your time goes to looks very different.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Sorting it out

OK, I'm not the most tech savvy person so this blog thing is a bit of a challenge. The photo in the previous post is Scott's rootbeer sparkle 29" touring bike, complete with an excellent display of cows in the background.  Supertherm downtube, big beefy PMW low mount drops and Fat City style 3/4" round chainstays. Touring tough

One more

Friday, May 11, 2012

One Picture

My alignment table, with various tools and bike