Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Flwrider Skyline Jersey (from Hong Kong)

So I went to Hong Kong last March.  I was there for a month.  I had all of these great cycling experiences, and met many great people there advancing the cause of cycling.  A couple of those people are Brian and Eric, who are part of the Hong Kong fixed gear scene.  Brian started it a few years ago after having spent some time in San Francisco.  He brought the fixie scene to Hong Kong, and has created a world-wide venue for anything and everything cycling (and more) through his website  Their logo is beautiful, and ever since I saw him wearing a jersey with the logo printed on it, I've wanted one of my own.  There weren't any available before I left, but I've contacted Brian recently, and they have a new one available as of last June.  Check it out... flwrider skyline jersey

What do you think?!  I've already ordered one, and I can't wait to get it.  

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Extensive Hong Kong Bicycling Report

This week, my cycling friend, Martin, who I met when I was in Hong Kong, was featured in a 23 minute report on bicycling there.  There is some excellent footage of him riding his daily commute on one of the busiest roads on Hong Kong Island from North Point to Wan Chai.  He is an excellent example of how to do it right and be safe, and his comments about the issues of taking a bike on the trains and ferries are to the point and very convincing.  In Hong Kong, to really get where you need to go on a bike, you're going to have to be able to utilize the trains and ferries with it.  Please check out the report at the link below...

Friday, August 26, 2011

1976 Fuji Sports 10 Single-Speed

UPDATE: I have since built this one back into a 12 speed and gave it to a friend who's children told their parents that they need to get bikes!  I had come across a fuji mixtie frame from the 70's and gave that one along with this sports 10 to them to use.  I think the only single speed I'll use is my fuji track bike, at the velodrome.

Do you remember the 'extra' frame I received when I picked up my 80's Fuji Track Frame up in New York?  After seeing my blog, Zachary (the craigslist seller of the track frame) gave me this orange Sports 10 frame as well.  Thankfully my friend Jeff was there to help carry it home on the train.  

I took it not knowing what I was going to do with it.  I attended a swap meet in Trexlertown last spring (there is another one this October 1st), and bought an 1/8" 18 tooth suntour single-speed freewheel.  I was going to put it on the other side of the sunshine professional track wheel that is on the track bike, but realized there are not brake holes in the frame.  I don't want to mess that up by drilling any, and am keeping that bike for the sole purpose of riding the track (its intended purpose anyway).  After putting together the track bike, I ended up with a couple of extra 1/8" chainrings.  I had been avoiding the learning curve of realigning a rear axle on a multi-speed hub and re-dishing the rim that is necessary when converting from multiple gears to one gear on bikes like this.  So, I decided that it was time to do that with the orange Sports 10.   It actually wasn't that difficult, just a bit time consuming really.  I went ahead and rebuilt the wheels with new spokes to help it look nicer, and thanks again to Alan at Alan's Bicycles in Phoenixville, Pa.  He had the warm and comfy looking brown saddle that completes the bike and fits its style.  Maybe someday I'll rebuild the wheels again to swap out the gold rims from the Fuji Royale II.  

I've set up the gearing with a 47 tooth chainring in the front, and an 18 tooth cog in the rear.  This gives about a 70 inch gear, which is a good mid-range gearing for moderate hills like the ones around here.  I don't think I'll be taking this on really long road rides, but I will be taking it on the Perkiomen Trail for sure.  

I'm happy to add another type of ride to my Fuji stable.  There is the track racer, the road racer (opus III), the tourer (touring series iv), the everyday use workhorse (royale II), and the jovial 3-speed (bedford).  I'm going to have alot of fun on this single-speed.  Maybe I'll get out in the snow with it this winter.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Around and Around in T-Town

Standing on the apron.
Up at the boards.
Sprinting to the finish on the left.

I finally made it to the track here in Trexlertown.  It is called the Valley Preferred Cycling Center, and it is a wonderful place.  I can't wait to start bringing my daughters here.  Tonight was the last class of 8 sessions for the adult basic course that they offer to the community.  There were about 18 or so of us, and we learned about gears, some of the events, and some of the tactics of the sport.  We honed our pace-lining skills, but most importantly we enjoyed being out here going round and round as fast as we can.  The class was not what I expected.  It was basically a training session, which is good, but I thought it was going to be slower paced.  The competitiveness really came out of me during these classes when we were doing the mock races.  

I need better technology so my videos come out clearer, but the one above at least gives you some sense of the track itself.  Toward the end it pans around full circle.  

The Fuji track bike did splendidly.  We got laminated gear charts tonight, and on it says that Fuji is the official bike of the center.  I wonder how that came to be.   

One thing I haven't gotten to do yet is attend some of the major racing that happens here on Friday nights through the summer.  The last one is this Friday, but I won't be able to make it either.  I'll have to wait for next summer.  In the meantime, I will try to get up here as much as I can to ride.  I'm enjoying it as much as I thought I would.

A Hidden Fuji

Eugene A. Sloane passed away a few years ago.  His book, The Complete Book of Bicycling published in 1970, is one of  if not the most comprehensive on the subject.  He also wrote the Bicycle Maintenance Manual, published in 1981.  I have read through both of these books numerous times, but I don't always look closely at sections I feel I grasp fully.  However, I was looking closer at his mechanic book this morning, and noticed that a classic fuji is featured in a few of the pictures.  I recognized it because my eye happened to catch the headbadge, only half of which is in view.  It appears in pages 113-116, and it looks like it might be the Finest model.  It is used to demonstrate how to install bar end shifters.  

I suppose he didn't mention Fujis in his first book because they weren't imported into the US until 1971.  I wonder what he thought of the Fuji bicycles.