Finding that Commonground

14 04 2016

Back in December, we had a look at Commonground Bikesuncommon approach to the 24.

As you might recall, rather than taking the well-trodden path of many other companies…that is, scaling up a bigger version of 20″ geometry…Commonground took a different approach.

Commonground borrowed elements of 26″ dirtjumpers (slack headtubes, low bottom brackets) and scaled it down to a 24″ version (while still retaining many familiar “BMX-y” elements).

Have a look at that previous post if you want to see how the Commonground setup compares, side-by-side, to a typical BMX cruiser.

Commonground still

Of course, words and images are great but it’s always nice to see how a bike works “in the field”…or in this case, at the trails.

As luck would have it, Commonground dropped a video edit today that explains a bit more about the Commonground concept along with some good riding action.

Check it out.

Bonus section: the filmer seemed to really, really like the Commonground frame.

Shot some stuff for @commongroundbikes but I could only stay serious for so long… #traillife #actorlife #comedy

A video posted by Taylor Calmus (@dudedadvlog) on

 





Ain’t it Grand(s)?

26 11 2015

You might think, based on my previous post 2 things you must do before the Grands; that this weekend’s big race in Oklahoma isn’t something that I’m that big on.

In one way, that’s kinda true…I think your “biking dollar” could go a lot further with just about any other kind of biking trip.

But on the other hand?

The Grands has been such an important part of BMX…for so long…that’s it’s hard not to be at least kinda into it.

Beyond the obvious attention-grabbing classes…the Pros and the older am classes…what I’m really interested in in seeing (via video) is the “older” Cruiser classes.

cruiser grands aerial

As most of you know, if you’re racking up in something like 41-45 Cruiseryou’re in the jungle baby…and there’s a real chance you’re gonna die*…if you’re not at the top of your game and laying down some serious horsepower.

(And speaking of “in the jungle”…apparently there’s a water jump this year!)

Water jump

So a tip of the visor to all those riders competing this weekend.

Good luck and good gates!

 

*not really dying, obviously.





Pro tip: use an umbrella in staging

22 08 2014

BMX racers are always looking for that extra edge.

A couple years back, we learned that drinking a slurpee could make the difference on a hot race day.

Well, I think I have stumbled on to the next game changer in BMX, the umbrella.

If you look at other racing disciplines, it’s not uncommon to see a racer being shielded from the elements by an umbrella held by a helpful assistant.

Just look at motorcycle racing.

superbike umbrella w

Or auto racing

(Heck, the sun’s not even out here!)

auto umbrella

 

Not sure why BMX racing hasn’t latched onto this ground-breaking idea.

ODI even manufactures a pit umbrella, complete with a lock-on grip at the end! It’s practically crying out for BMX racers to use it in staging.

Odi golf umbrellaActually, maybe I’m being a little hasty.

I did spot a racer in staging this summer that was trying out this umbrella idea.

umbrella in staging

That’s me in the blue TLD jersey, hating life because I don’t have any shade…while over beside me, that kid is just chilling…waiting to take on his class; all cool, calm and collected.

Must be an early adopter.

I gotta jump on this bandwagon…I think I’m going to order an umbrella today.





Liquid releases Feedback V2 frame

9 12 2013

After a bit of a hiatus, Liquid Bikes has returned to the 24″ BMX scene with an updated version of its super popular Feedback frame.

Dubbed the Feedback V2, this frame is now being made in the USA by Solid BMX. It maintains the same proven geometry, but is lighter, stiffer and perhaps even cooler than the previous incarnation, in that it now features custom laser-cut bridges between the stays.

According to Liquid, the Feedback V2,

features newly designed chain stays that improve tire/sprocket clearance and stiffen the rear end compared to the previous version – all while keeping one of the shortest chain stay lengths in the 24″ market.

That’s in addition to some of the longest top-tube size options available: take your pick of a 22″ or 22.3″ top tube. Perfect for the taller rider…which, let’s face it, makes up a lion share of the 24″ BMX demographic.

Liquid Feedback V2 frame

Color choices for the Feedback V2 are Root Beer (trans-brown), Raw with clear coat and Satin Black.

Specs:                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Top Tube: 22″ or 22.3″
Bottom Bracket height: 12.7″
Chain Stay: 14.25″
Head Angle: 74 degrees
Seat Angle: 72 degrees

Other notables:
30 tooth max sprocket clearance
2.3″ rear tire clearance
Double butted top and down tubes
Externally butted seat tube
Custom laser cut seat stay and chain stay bridges
Non-removable u-brake mounts
Weight: 5 lbs

Check out liquid-bikes.com, which has also undergone a bit of a refresh, for the rest of the particulars.

Liquid Bikes website

Stoked to see Liquid back on the scene with some fresh gear.





BMX vs. MX: an epic battle

22 10 2013

Back in 2012, Gundars Osis dropped one of the better race videos in recent memory. (See Gundars Osis takes a hot lap.)

Tightly edited and filmed at a fairly technical track by Kaspars Garda, it just made you want to grab the bike and take a few hot laps yourself.

Well, the two guys have teamed up again to put out another great video.

This time, Gundars Osis (riding his BMX cruiser) pits himself against Matiss Karro (riding a motocross bike) on a BMX track.

Will Gundars be able to hold his own vs. the MX rider?

Check out the video to find out.





Austin Texas picture show

16 05 2013

After hearing so many good things about Austin, Texas I finally made a trip out there to check it out for myself.

I was a little worried that my expectations were too high but it turns out that Austin really is a great place if you’re into BMX…and cruisers in particular.

Austin teeActually, Austin is a great place if you’re into bikes of any kind.

Unlike a lot of cities, Austin seems to go out of its way to promote bicycling. People bike everywhere and bike racks are plentiful….I don’t think I have ever seen bike racks set up in front of a bar before but in Austin that’s commonplace.

Bicycle friendlyBut as a BMXer, I was kinda blown away by how much BMX is part of the everyday fabric there.

Walking by a women’s clothing store downtown there was an immaculate old school Skyway T/A just sitting in the window as part of the display.

Skyway in windowGo down to the 6th st., a bar and restaurant area,  and you’ll see tricked-out 24s, like this Liquid, just locked up outside the restaurants.

Liquid on 6th street

Heck, you’ll even see cruisers hanging from the ceiling in some bars. Check this out:

Cruisers in the barHop on one of the city buses and you’re likely to see a cruiser sitting on the bike rack.

SE on busAnd you would you believe that a local brewer has come out with a cruiser-themed beer? Yes, it’s true. In Austin you can  pick up a Firemans 4.

Firemans 4 can

A beer that was made to honor Austin’s own, Firemans Texas Cruiser bikes.

Firemans Texas CruzerAdd in great places to ride, like the 9th street trails

9th street…and Walnut Creek

Buddy Walnut Creekand pair that with friendly, laid-back locals, it’s hard to go wrong.

Buddy (pictured above), not only shredded everything in sight at Walnut Creek but was also kind enough to let me borrow a bike and drive me out to the trails. Thanks man!

(I wish I could’ve captured a better shot of his riding but rest assured Buddy was taking care of business at Walnut Creek.)

If that weren’t enough, Austin’s live music scene is off the charts, not only is Austin home to multiple music festivals, but it’s also home to a record number of live music venues. Just walking around town you’re bound to find a musician or band that blows you away….it happened to me more than once on this trip.

FairdaleAnd the food!

Austin is well-known for its food trucks, BBQ, tacos (which you can eat for every meal of the day)…you name it…you will find something that strikes your fancy here.

Salt Lick and Firemans 4

Do I need to say more?

Frankly, I’m just trying to figure out when I can go back.





Traveling Florida by cruiser

9 04 2013

Steve, a guy in the PlanetBMX shipping department, and Von (a good friend and fellow Floridian) left today for a couple hundred mile ride across the state of Florida on their cruisers.

Steve’s rolling on a Floval Flyer complete with Skyways and Von’s piloting a tricked-out S&M.

Steve Ride Across Florida

The plan is to make the epic ride, have some fun along the way and arrive at the 5th Annual Spring Fling in St Petersburg, Florida next Saturday.

Von Ride Across Florida

You can follow their progress over on the PlanetBMX Facebook page.

Pretty cool stuff.

Good luck guys!








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