Walnut Creek Wednesday

30 03 2016

One of my absolute favorite places to hit when visiting Austin, Texas is the Walnut Creek Pumptrack.

I still remember my first time there…riding a bike I had borrowed from Buddy (who was kind enough to drive me out there) and just having a great time riding this great spot with Buddy and a bunch of cool ATX locals.

Buddy Walnut Creek

The pumptrack has something for everyone…whatever your skill level, you’re going to find something there you can ride.

But that’s only half of it.

The vibe out at Walnut Creek is just plain awesome.

Jokes, high fives, talking about bikes, people trying new things…beers…it all contributes to the good times.

It’s a place you really have to check out if you get the chance.

With that being said, I came across this video (from Hippie Josh) the other day that seems to really capture what Walnut Creek is all about.

It’s a few years old but no less relevant today.

Check it out.





Sutty’s custom Invictus Bikes cruiser

29 03 2016

UK rider, Roy “Sutty” Sutton spotted our recent post on Curtis Bikes’ unconventional cruiser and decided to drop us a line about another custom frame builder in the UK that will “build anything you want”…Invictus Bikes.

Invictus just finished his custom 24″ dirt/park/race cruiser (it’s just going to paint) and he sent along some early photos to share the stoke.

invctus front(1)

It features the following specs:
  • 69 degree head tube
  • 72 degree seat tube
  • 23″ top tube
  • 14″ rear stay
  • 11.2″ bottom bracket height
  • 135mm dropouts to run a disc brake

invictus rear

Sutty’s going to provide an update when it’s painted and ready to go. The frame comes in at a tidy 4 pounds (if that sort of thing matters to you).

invictus sideLooking forward to seeing this rig all built up!

Sutty says his M.O. these days is “pump tracks/dirt/park and the occasional race”…so maybe some action shots too?





Experience Europe’s great indoors

12 01 2016

It seems fitting that on the day my city gets its first major snowfall of the season…I learn of a new indoor bike park!

Following in the footsteps of other parks (Rays MTB, Joyride 150, Cranx and others) this particular park takes the concept outside of North America.

Wood15 is the first indoor bike park of this type in Europe.

Wood15c

Located in Sittard-Geleen, Netherlands (in an old Phillips television factory), it offers terrain and features suited for beginners and experts alike. Of course, it’s also a welcome escape if Mother Nature turns nasty.

The park also has a nice-looking coffee bar called “Drinkplaats” inside to keep you caffeinated/hydrated during your session.

Drinkplaats

It definitely looks like a pretty cool place…and kinda makes me want to visit the Netherlands!

Check it out.





A primer on how to build a pumptrack

8 01 2016

We’ve had a soft spot for pumptracks for some time now.

And we’ve checked out some nice ones over the years.

Whether pumptracks can save your marriage…or provide therapy when its on the rocks…I’ll let you decide.

But it’s hard to deny their appeal.

Providing a fun session, regardless of your skill level, is what keeps riders coming back again and again.

Not to mention, their versatility…from city-council supported facilities to rider-built pump tracks in the woods, all the way to tight setups in the backyard…you can pretty much get a pump track going anywhere.

What we haven’t talked about is how to build one…

While there are pumptrack tips scattered throughout the web, this video by Phil Kmetz does a great job explaining the thinking behind it and some good guidelines to follow when building your own pumptrack.

Granted, you may not have access to some of the tools that Phil uses but you can still get a lot out of it.

Heck, he even explains how to make “wife-friendly”…so maybe it can save your marriage after all!





An uncommon approach to the 24

30 12 2015

Commonground Bikes has taken a decidedly uncommon approach to spec’ing their flagship 24″ bike.

While many companies have followed the path (made famous by Sunday with the Model C) of building scaled up versions of their popular 20″ bikes.

Commonground opted to take the dimensions of a 26″ dirtjumper frame and scale it down to a 24″ package.

commonground

Along with that thinking comes a quite different handling bike.

Instead of a steep head angle and a high bottom bracket, you’ll find a slack head angle and a low bottom bracket.

24 cruiser vs commonground comparison

We’re talking a 69 degree head angle here…which is very slack by cruiser standards. Even race cruisers stay above the 72 degree threshold (Mike Wong’s Dialled cruiser excepted).

commonground 26-24

With spec’s like this, it seems like this would be right at home in the dirt (which is what PlusSizeBMX seems to have found when they took it for a spin).

Heck, I can see how these might gain some traction (pardon the pun) in some of the older cruiser classes…given its more predictable steering and lower, more stable stance.

Not sure how it would fare for more technical street/park type riding though.

An interesting concept for sure…and with FBM manufacturing the frames and S&M helping out with the bars and forks you know these babies are built to last.

What do you think?

(All pics/images: Commonground)





The swan song for 24″ Chase Hawk tires?

18 12 2015

After so much teasing, buildup and finally, the introduction of a 24″ Chase Hawk tire…it seems like its days might be numbered.

In a dramatic sponsorship change, almost on par with Primo dropping the Blue Falcon years ago, Odyssey has dropped Chase Hawk from their team.

Understandably, the internets have been going crazy over the last 48 hours with the news.

With Chase off the team, it probably means his signature products are probably on their way out too.

So, if you’ve been on the fence about picking up a pair, you might want to jump on it sooner rather than later.

Sad news all around…although I think Chase is probably going to have no problem finding himself a new co-sponsor (He’s still reppin’ Cult, naturally.)

Maybe Odyssey will consider a 24″ Duggan tire to replace the Hawk tire?

It’s the least they could do in this situation.





Letting the freak flag fly on the Fat Ripper

26 10 2015

The SE Fat Ripper is a bit of an anomaly in the BMX world.

It has the look of a classic PK Ripper with floval tubing, looptail rear end, and Landing Gear forks…but then mixes it with 26 x 3.5” tires, 65mm wide rims, and disc brakes.

It was a headturner (and probably a headscratcher for some) from the time the first time a sneak peek was released.

But how does it ride?

Todd Lyons seems to have anticipated that question and has been pretty tireless with dropping pictures and clips of him riding this beast.

TL tail tap on FAT Ripper

Now, apparently to silence all critics, Todd and SE have dropped an edit of TL shredding all manner of obstacles and terrain aboard the FAT Ripper. ( And, as a sidenote…can I mention how awesome it is to see a company rep shredding one of their big-wheeled bikes? This doesn’t happen enough.)

Sure looks like this thing can handle just about anything in its path.





Tejano Tabletop Tuesday

29 09 2015

After all of last week’s Interbike coverage, it’s about time we got back to some actual riding.

So, for your viewing pleasure…Buddy Sardenga with a sweet tabletop (aboard his custom Beelzebike 20 666’er) at the Tejano Trails near Austin, TX.

Buddy Tejano Table

(Pic by Octavio Arturo)





WTP Atlas: new look, same great ride

22 09 2015

As mentioned in the previous post, I had made a beeline to the We The People (WTP) booth at Interbike because of earlier rumors that had said WTP was going to offer two cruisers in their lineup for 2016.

I was intrigued…and half-concerned…that they would change up the 24″ Atlas.

It turns out that the WTP folks decided to stick with a good thing and left the spec/geometry pretty much the same as last years…essentially a long, “trails-y”-feeling 24.

What has changed is the look of the WTP Atlas.

The black and red ano colorway of the 2015 has been dispensed with.

In its place?

Atlas sideA “bottle-green” (trans) green frame & fork, complimented with generous helpings of chrome  and black, and rounded out with tanwall Kenda Small Block 8 tires.

This combo looks really nice.

Not much more to say about this bike, other than this is a real looker and ready to shred right out of the box.

Atlas angleIf you’re someone that doesn’t like the higher BBs on other modern 24s…but want something more responsive than “traditional cruiser geometry”…this might be the bike you want to take another look at.

Atlas frontThe specs/particulars:

Frame/fork and bars are full cro-mo.

  • Head tube: 74 degrees
  • Seat tube angle: 72 degrees
  • Top tube length: 22″
  • BB height: 12.7″
  • Stand over height: 9.7″




Sneak Peek: 2016 Subrosa Malum 26″

20 07 2015

Subrosa has updated the 26″ Malum for 2016 with a cool new look.

Originally introduced last year for their 2015 lineup, this year’s version has a unique look with a “salvaged rat rod rust paint” finish (that’s smooth to the touch) and colorful Baja seat.

In terms of the bike itself, it features a full Cromoly frame, fork and handlebar. (Which is always welcome to hear!)

2016 Subrosa Malum 26inch

It’s not to shabby in the parts department either.   The 26″ Malum comes complete with sealed female hubs, double-wall rims and a Shadow Interlock V2 chain.

Subrosa also recently dropped a video that highlights the specs of the new 26″ Malum.

Peep the list below for the rest of the specs:

  • Frame – 100% Seamless Chromoly w/ Ovalized DT – 72° HT / 73° ST / 22″ TT / 16.5″ CS / 14.75″ standover,  removable brake mounts
  • Fork – 100% Chromoly, Tapered Legs
  • Handlebars – 100% Cromoly 7″ rise / 12° backsweep / 1° upsweep / 29″ wide
  • Headset – Rant Sealed Integrated
  • Stem – Shadow Ravager Top Load
  • Front & Rear Rim – Rant 36H Double Wall Alloy
  • Front Hub – Rant 3/8″ Alloy Sealed Female Axle
  • Rear Hub – Rant 14mm Alloy Sealed female Cassette
  • Tires – Rant 2.20″
  • Cranks – Rant Chromoly 8 Spline 3-piece.
  • Bottom Bracket – Sealed Mid
  • Sprocket – Subrosa Shred alloy
  • Gearing – 25-11 Micro Gearing
  • Chain – Shadow Interlock v2
  • Pedals – Shadow Ravager Plastic
  • Brakes – Rant Alloy U-brakes
  • Seat/Post – Subrosa Baja mid pivotal

The complete bike weighs in at 30.5 lbs…not a featherweight for sure but definitely a ride that will stand up to any abuse you might throw at it.

Go bug your Subrosa dealer for availability and pricing.