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If you like the way your bike rides, it’s an awesome bike.
March 28, 2012 7:38 AM   Subscribe

Got questions about your bike or bicycling in general? Surly bikes' Skip Bernet has answers to just about any bike forum post ever written.
posted by barnacles (91 comments total) 47 users marked this as a favorite

 
No bike does everything perfectly. In fact, no bike does anything until someone gets on it to ride.

Truth of the day.
posted by Celsius1414 at 7:49 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


Your bikeshop is not trying to screw you. They’re trying to stay open.

This list made me happy, until I got here and remembered that the only Kona shop within at least 500km of me closed down the other day.

I like his style. If it was serious I guess it would call for more specific answers, but that's what we have the late great Sheldon Brown for.

Bike season bike season bike season bike season.
posted by Stagger Lee at 7:49 AM on March 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


I was sort of expecting exactly the opposite of what that was. I now have a big smile on my face.
posted by bjrubble at 7:55 AM on March 28, 2012 [4 favorites]


The best advice I ever got from rec.bicycles.tech was: Ride Bike!
posted by bonehead at 7:57 AM on March 28, 2012 [4 favorites]


Excellent. Absolutely excellent.
posted by Wolfdog at 8:02 AM on March 28, 2012


I would omit one 'probably' from that, but otherwise - perfection.
posted by Wolfdog at 8:03 AM on March 28, 2012


I know exactly the probably Wolfdog is referencing. Don't even have to ask. And I absolutely agree.
posted by RolandOfEld at 8:08 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


The Surly blog and Rivendell bike corps blogs are my favorite for stripping the pomp and gearheads away and getting to what bicycling is about at its core: bicycling.
posted by Think_Long at 8:10 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


Almost all of those are my favorite. My favoritist, I think, is: "Maybe the person you waved at while you were out riding didn’t see you wave at them." Just because it's probably the most universal proverb.
posted by General Malaise at 8:12 AM on March 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


Geez. Even in an otherwise pretty relentlessly positive post like this, there's still time to insult recumbents.
posted by the dief at 8:13 AM on March 28, 2012 [4 favorites]


Shut up and ride.
posted by 2N2222 at 8:19 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


This reminds me of a blog idea I had a couple years ago: "Hey, Nice Bike!"

It would be a Sartorialist-style blog with a well-sized well-shot photo of a bike rider proudly showing their bike. Little kids, Cat III racers, hipsters, elderly people on cruisers... anybody who's got a bike and is clearly using it and is willing to stop and answer a couple questions about why they like it.

I didn't do it because I realized I'd never be traveling enough, or live in a large enough city, to make a blog like that viable, so I'm throwing it out here: If you like the idea, run with it.
posted by ardgedee at 8:20 AM on March 28, 2012 [6 favorites]


my addition: "you own too many bikes? you mean your garage is too small, right?"
posted by gorestainedrunes at 8:20 AM on March 28, 2012


Yes, you can ________ on your bike - whatever it is.

Amen! Let's ride, Sadie (that's what I call my cheap, trusty, beloved Giant hybrid. I even have a song for her.)!
posted by Isingthebodyelectric at 8:20 AM on March 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


Your handlebars can be lower than your saddle, even with your saddle, or higher than your saddle. Whichever way you like it is right.

I like the spirit of this post in general, but I don't want to be told I'm right about how my bike fits and then get a giant infection inside of my ass muscles because my bike is too small and the saddle is at a ridiculous height (this isn't from personal experience, but it did happen to someone I know).
posted by invitapriore at 8:21 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


"The moral of RAGBRAI is that families and drunken boobs can have fun on the same route, just maybe at different times of day."

Speaking as someone who has been on both sides of that fence, I agree with this statement.

On Surly: It's highly likely that if I replace my 10-year old Marin, I will replace it with a Surly bike. There is loads of no-nonsense splendor in their aluminum frames. That said, there is no end to pretentious bike snobby gearheads riding them here in the Twin Cities. It's the brand of choice amongst that set. I'm guessing, however, that these boobs don't read the blog, or if they do, don't quite grok that it's directed unfavorably at them.
posted by mcstayinskool at 8:21 AM on March 28, 2012


Next month does start a new round of 30 days of biking. :)
posted by jillithd at 8:22 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


32 spokes, 48 spokes, 24 spokes, three spokes? Sure.

Note that he did not say "5 spokes". There's a reason for that.

Speaking of answers to bike-forum questions, this is pretty cool. Mostly a compendium of curmudgeonly answers by Jobst Brandt.
posted by adamrice at 8:23 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


Hey everybody, guess what.

Bikes!
posted by The Bridge on the River Kai Ryssdal at 8:28 AM on March 28, 2012


That said, there is no end to pretentious bike snobby gearheads riding them here in the Twin Cities

I'm getting a Crosscheck this month, so I will soon be one of those boobs! (I'm pretty shallow though. When I was talking with a friend about his opinion on Surly, the first thing I asked him was: "but don't only douche bags ride surly?" "Of course. But they're awesome bikes too.")
posted by Think_Long at 8:29 AM on March 28, 2012


(RAGBRAI for people like me who had to Google it.)
posted by Ian A.T. at 8:31 AM on March 28, 2012


...then get a giant infection inside of my ass muscles because my bike is too small and the saddle is at a ridiculous height (this isn't from personal experience, but it did happen to someone I know).

WTF? As much as I really don't want to read about it, do you have a source for this?
posted by Big_B at 8:31 AM on March 28, 2012


Here's a related post on the Rivendell bikes blog.

My favorites:

If you're a guy, don't try to be a mentor to every female cyclist you meet.

Don't ride in shoes you can't walk through an antique shop in.

At least one ride in 10, go without your sunglasses and gloves. Sometime next month, put some double-sided cheap-style pedals on a good bike and ride in non-cycling garb. It works shockingly well, and sends a good message to would-be bicycle riders.


posted by Think_Long at 8:32 AM on March 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


I know exactly the probably Wolfdog is referencing. Don't even have to ask. And I absolutely agree.


I was reading this thing, frantically thinking to myself ok, which "probably" are they talking about?! Which! One!

And then I saw it. What a no-brainer.

Now I gotta go fix the rear brake pads on my ancient yellow Schwinn Continental
(with yellow tires and yellow bartape -and charming rust spots!- I call it The Yellow Submarine).
posted by Doleful Creature at 8:35 AM on March 28, 2012


That said, there is no end to pretentious bike snobby gearheads riding them here in the Twin Cities. It's the brand of choice amongst that set. I'm guessing, however, that these boobs don't read the blog, or if they do, don't quite grok that it's directed unfavorably at them.

Yeah, that dichotomy kind of freaks me out.
posted by COBRA! at 8:38 AM on March 28, 2012



Don't ride in shoes you can't walk through an antique shop in.


Clipless pedals made biking 100000x better, so I have to disagree. They're hell to walk in, but why are you walking when you could be riding?


...my bike and I get thrown out a lot of antique shops.
posted by Stagger Lee at 8:39 AM on March 28, 2012


SPD clipless pedals allow for recessed cleats on shoes and for the most part you can walk normally in them. I really like them and I don't think there's any realy downside to them on a road bike (nominally, they're "for" mountain biking)
posted by RustyBrooks at 8:42 AM on March 28, 2012 [5 favorites]


(nominally, they're "for" mountain biking)

I can't be the only person that uses the same pedal style for their cross country mountain bike and roadbike. I'm not buying a second pair of biking shoes!


At least one ride in 10, go without your sunglasses and gloves. Sometime next month, put some double-sided cheap-style pedals on a good bike and ride in non-cycling garb. It works shockingly well, and sends a good message to would-be bicycle riders.

This is okay, but wear shorts or clip your pantlegs down, I've shredded too many jeans and that's a terrible way to come to a stop. Angry people scraping rocks out of their abrasions and trying to get denim out of their cogs does nothing to encourage onlookers to cycle.
posted by Stagger Lee at 8:47 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


I can't be the only person that uses the same pedal style for their cross country mountain bike and roadbike. I'm not buying a second pair of biking shoes!

Yeah, exactly. SPDs have some advantages for mountain biking, mostly I guess that they have an "open" design that works well even when caked with mud. I use them on all my bikes - even my casual bike has a set of pedals with SPD on one side and platforms on the other.
posted by RustyBrooks at 8:48 AM on March 28, 2012


You wanna roll SPD, Look-style, flats, toe clips, BMX platforms... it's all good if you're rolling.
posted by introp at 8:50 AM on March 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


I can't be the only person that uses the same pedal style for their cross country mountain bike and roadbike. I'm not buying a second pair of biking shoes!

You're doing all your biking in a single pair of shoes? Gross.
posted by The World Famous at 8:50 AM on March 28, 2012


Most bike companies put the decals under the clear coat, forcing you to be a moving advertisement.

Surly uses easy to remove decals, they even tell you the best way to remove them.

I really like their corporate culture, an in my experience their frames are pretty good bang for the buck.

What they did with the Karate Monkey and then with the Pugsley gives them many points in my book.

But then they refuse to put kickstand plates on their frames, even on the LHT. Wtf Surly?
posted by Ayn Rand and God at 8:51 AM on March 28, 2012


Don't ride in shoes you can't walk through an antique shop in.

That's a Rivendell thing. They have their own sort of Luddite snobbery about bike gear.
posted by liketitanic at 8:53 AM on March 28, 2012 [3 favorites]


From Think_Long's link:
Compliment other people's bikes, especially if they're new.

Yes, please do! I just bought my very first brand-new bike ever this month and AGONIZED ENDLESSLY looking at all the different local bike shops and the brands they carried and the websites of the brands they carried and all the bikes that were available and the features and all that business. I think I knew some of the bike lines better than the salespeople at times.

So when I got to finally pick my special order bike up and the bike shop owner said to me "That bike is pretty sweet!"

"Thanks! I think so, too!" Oh man. My grin could not be bigger.
posted by jillithd at 8:53 AM on March 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


Reading this makes me miss cycling to work :(
posted by EndsOfInvention at 8:57 AM on March 28, 2012


Shut down the forums, the man has figured it out. Seriously though, this is why I rarely read bike forums, not that they’re all bad, it’s just a lot of the same thing over and over, and then it devolves into who’s doing it right and who’s wrong.
posted by bongo_x at 8:59 AM on March 28, 2012


ardgedee: This reminds me of a blog idea I had a couple years ago: "Hey, Nice Bike!"

Something like this, maybe?
posted by fitnr at 9:00 AM on March 28, 2012


Honestly, seeing someone write "yes, you can put a rack on it" relieves a lot of anxiety for me, because I've had a pretty strong feeling that I was breaking some rule by sticking a rack and panniers on my bike.
posted by COBRA! at 9:01 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


Somehow reminded me of this wonderful Tumblr by a friend of mine: Fuck Yeah Weird Bikes! which never fails to make me smile.
posted by epersonae at 9:01 AM on March 28, 2012


I can't be the only person that uses the same pedal style for their cross country mountain bike and roadbike. I'm not buying a second pair of biking shoes!

I recently bought the exact same pedals for my road bike. I had two pairs of shoes and gave one away to the Goodwill. Of course my road bike is my old off-road bike with skinnier tires and worn out treads.
posted by bongo_x at 9:03 AM on March 28, 2012


Steel is a great material for making bike frames - so is aluminum, carbon fiber, and titanium.

I have my own version of this:


Steel bends, titanium snaps
Aluminum crumples, magnesium's crap
Bamboo shatters when it's too dry
Carbon splinters, you'll probably die

posted by TheWhiteSkull at 9:06 AM on March 28, 2012 [11 favorites]


Fixed fitnr's link: here

I mostly am checking out the bike LOCKS in that link. Those things are massive.
posted by jillithd at 9:08 AM on March 28, 2012


TheWhiteSkull, am I right in assuming that is a Dorothy Parker-inspired poem? :)
posted by Celsius1414 at 9:15 AM on March 28, 2012


There is loads of no-nonsense splendor in their aluminum frames.

Neither I nor my Kona Jake the Snake disagree, but I'm pretty sure nearly all if not all of Surly's offerings are steel.
posted by pts at 9:25 AM on March 28, 2012


The moral of RAGBRAI is that families and drunken boobs can have fun on the same route, just maybe at different times of day.

This is true, and not even necessarily at different times of day. I was with a family group and we camped out one night next to a bus belonging to a group called the Alcohawks, and we ended up going to bed at about the same time.

Overall, this is completely excellent advice.
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:36 AM on March 28, 2012


I'm glad I didn't see any fixed-gear love in that list because that shit is stupid.
posted by hellslinger at 9:36 AM on March 28, 2012


This reminds me of a blog idea I had a couple years ago: "Hey, Nice Bike!"

It would be a Sartorialist-style blog with a well-sized well-shot photo of a bike rider proudly showing their bike.
Bike Fancy does this for women in Chicago. On a slightly more pretentious, bike-porny angle, there's also The Rapha Survey
posted by bl1nk at 9:42 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


WTF? As much as I really don't want to read about it, do you have a source for this?

Not a textual, verifiable source, but a guy I know had his glute separate from his tailbone because of friction from his saddle, according to the doctor. An infection developed in the resulting cavity. I wouldn't have guessed beforehand that his saddle setup would cause such a thing, but it was a visibly bad setup.
posted by invitapriore at 9:45 AM on March 28, 2012


Pure awesomesauce. I can't favorite this hard enough.

I need this printed on a card to hand to people when they ask me to help them decide on bike issues.
posted by Argyle at 9:46 AM on March 28, 2012


Slightly recumbentist, alas.
posted by scruss at 9:47 AM on March 28, 2012


I can't be the only person that uses the same pedal style for their cross country mountain bike and roadbike. I'm not buying a second pair of biking shoes!

I use Time MTB pedals and shoes on both for the same reason. Another reason: MTB shoes' treads provide clearance for the cleat not to touch the ground. Road shoes do not. Saves on floors and the cleats themselves.
posted by hellslinger at 9:47 AM on March 28, 2012


Man, I cleaned the bearings and clicky thingy that the cassette freewheels on, replaced some brake pads, cleaned and lubricated the chain and rest of the drive parts and got some new rubber.

My 20-year old so-called "hybrid" is like a new bike. I'd almost made up my mind to get a new bike, but now I can't remember why. I'd rather spend the money on a garage door opener so I can drive my bike in and out easier!

My 2-yr old daughter likes to go out in her "bike-ride! bike-ride!", otherwise known as a Chariot. So we do that, taking the rails-to-trails path to the local bakery, where she can stuff herself on a croissant.

I don't mind a little weather, but I am sure glad that warmer, dryer riding is here again.
posted by clvrmnky at 9:52 AM on March 28, 2012


Stagger Lee: "If it was serious I guess it would call for more specific answers, but that's what we have the late great Sheldon Brown for."

Somebody needs to take up the lede, and keep his site up to date. It's getting a bit dated.

His seat post size database (no, really) was completely invaluable to me the other day. The amount of information out there about older frames is close to zero, and Sheldon Brown's site kept me from having to take out the calipers to determine that my bike has a weird-ass 36.4mm seatpost collar. Fortunately, a company makes a 36.4mm collar with braze-ons for mounting a rack, so I don't need to deal with the ugliness and inflexibility of attaching the thing with P-clamps!
posted by schmod at 9:53 AM on March 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


I am the proud owner of two Surly bikes & happen to know a few of the Surly folks here in MPLS.
They make good bikes and promote an open and fun vision of what biking is/can be for all of us.
posted by djseafood at 10:03 AM on March 28, 2012


You can smell spring around the corner here in Seattle. I've got a couple of really nice Cannondales -- a mountain bike I haven't had a chance to ride since I got old, and fast road bike I haven't had a chance to ride since I got fat.

My son's super into fixing things with his dad and super into riding with me, so two weeks ago we set out to build, on our own, the ideal bike that would carry the two of us doing our favorite things -- going to swim lessons, ice cream at Molly Moon's after work, and the Sunday Ballard market. Recycled Cycles here in Seattle has been an invaluable resource, both for parts and advice. So far we've sunk about $60 into the project, most of that because I really wanted a leather saddle and I found a gently used one. Tonight we are putting on the decals my son and I picked out: a heart, a panda bear, and his daddy's band logo then the lacquer coat. Hopefully we'll get it all put together this weekend and I get to spend the rest of the year not paying $4.50 a gallon and racing around with my son in the child seat, on a dorky ass bike that is gonna be super comfortable and fun to ride all over the city.

Every time I drive past the Performance Bike Shop in the University District I think about how it's killing bIke culture and how I wasted so much time and money on ever lighter, sexier components that never really added to my enjoyment of cycling.

This post was perfect inspiration.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 10:07 AM on March 28, 2012


Wait, there is a world where all the pretentious bike-snobby gearheads ride around on $400 4130 Taiwanese frames with rack mounts and fender clearance? Honestly, that world sounds better than the status quo.
posted by lantius at 10:09 AM on March 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


thanks barnacles, this post is full of win. I just re-posted it on roadbikereview in fact, as their General board could use a heaping dose of this sort of thing.

and speaking as a fixie-commuting, clacky-shoe-wearing, neon lycra clad, powertap downloading Cat 3 racer, I would like to gently remind y'all that we do, in fact, have our place in the world as well, as Skip points out :)
posted by lonefrontranger at 10:12 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


Bike Fancy does this for women in Chicago.

Classy header image there.
posted by kenko at 10:15 AM on March 28, 2012


I am soooooooo glad i dusted off my languor and decided to ride to work today.
posted by OHenryPacey at 10:19 AM on March 28, 2012


Classy header image there.

What are you talking about? That's an awesome looking bike, what we can see of it.
posted by Halloween Jack at 10:25 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


I like this guy, and wish everyone on earth had the same views on computers (Apple vs. MS vs. Linux), motorcycles (Harley vs. Triumph vs. everything else), working out (free weights vs. machines vs. kettle bells vs. cardio), and pretty much every other type of forum I frequent.

Tools are tools. What you do with them -- and the level of satisfaction that brings you -- is all that matters.
posted by coolguymichael at 10:27 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


What are you talking about? That's an awesome looking bike, what we can see of it.

"Lorena rides a Specialized Globe Live Mixte..."
posted by Celsius1414 at 10:27 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


A pristine bike free of dirt, scratches, and wear marks makes me sort of sad.

This is a more eloquent way of expressing something I've always believed - "An unscratched bike, is an unloved bike"
posted by Calloused_Foot at 10:35 AM on March 28, 2012


Oh, and no love for toeclips.
posted by Calloused_Foot at 10:35 AM on March 28, 2012


Hey, y'all, the header image on Bike Fancy is MeFi's own JulietBanana, so hush yer mouth, she's badass.
posted by fiercecupcake at 11:24 AM on March 28, 2012 [5 favorites]


Think_Long: "At least one ride in 10, go without your sunglasses and gloves."

In tens of thousands of miles of riding, I had one fall where I hit my head. I am glad I was wearing a helmet.

Guess how many times I have landed on the palms of my hands? I would rather go helmetless than gloveless.
posted by idiopath at 11:30 AM on March 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


This is a more eloquent way of expressing something I've always believed - "An unscratched bike, is an unloved bike"

Tell that to my anal retentive friend who freaked out when her bike got scratched and she special ordered a tube of paint direct from the manufacturer so that she could "fix" it. Of course, I suspect that her bike was always more of a fashion statement than a method of transportation/fun.
posted by asnider at 11:35 AM on March 28, 2012


The Surly blog and Rivendell bike corps blogs are my favorite for stripping the pomp and gearheads away and getting to what bicycling is about at its core: bicycling.

That's a Rivendell thing. They have their own sort of Luddite snobbery about bike gear.

Yeah. Surly is far more all-bikes-positive than Rivendell. There's too much of "if you're not doing it the heritage way, you're doing it the wrong way" attitude with Rivendell, and it really grates me. You know what? I wear road shoes that would be out of place in an antique shop, and I wear a synthetic jersey, not a wool one, and I don't care.
posted by The Michael The at 11:47 AM on March 28, 2012


I would rather go helmetless than gloveless.

Agreed. I go without sunglasses all the time (although I’m not sure what his point is there) but I would think long and hard before riding without gloves.
posted by bongo_x at 11:48 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


To be fair, the LOTR aspect of riv's schtick appeals to me as much as their grumpiness.
posted by Think_Long at 11:50 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


Tell that to my anal retentive friend who freaked out when her bike got scratched and she special ordered a tube of paint direct from the manufacturer so that she could "fix" it. Of course, I suspect that her bike was always more of a fashion statement than a method of transportation/fun.

That bike is probably more fetishized than loved...
posted by Calloused_Foot at 11:53 AM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm glad I didn't see any fixed-gear love in that list because that shit is stupid.

Sadface. I love my fixed gear bicycle. It is named Pikachu. It is teeny-tiny (650c wheels, holla!) and nimble and simple and light and so, so fun to ride.

P.S. It has front brakes (though no longer the rear as seen in that picture), which seems to be the thing people most freak out about w/r/t fixed gear bikes. But there is no law that you can't put a brake on a fixed gear... although people that ride true track frames may find that their fork isn't drilled for a brake.

Hey, y'all, the header image on Bike Fancy is MeFi's own JulietBanana, so hush yer mouth, she's badass.

Word. And she loves bikes more than anyone I know and she and I started a bike gang and it is awesome and inclusive and anyone who wants to dis her will have me to contend with.
posted by misskaz at 12:27 PM on March 28, 2012 [4 favorites]




Tell that to my anal retentive friend who freaked out when her bike got scratched and she special ordered a tube of paint direct from the manufacturer so that she could "fix" it. Of course, I suspect that her bike was always more of a fashion statement than a method of transportation/fun.


After taking my hard tail down a mountain rather clumsily and getting to the bottom with a splatter of blood across the white frame, I seriously considered lacquering it on there for posterity.

So I guess I'm in the keep the dings and scratches camp.
posted by Stagger Lee at 12:28 PM on March 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


I like to fix scratches on my bikes, for rust prevention. At first I figured out the RAL color code of my bike, and got a tiny little bottle of enamel at a hobby shop for $12. It almost matched, but the enamel did not last.

Now I fix scratches with nail polish. The cool thing is that nail polish comes in thousands of colors, you will most likely find something that matches your bike.

Me, I love to patch my brown Cross Check with a nail polish that has the exact color of clotted blood. Sprinkling a little bit of sand on the second to last coat makes it look like scabs. I fix my fancy blue/green Atlantis with yellow and pink nail polish, and my olive green Ogre with a metallic orange nail polish that goes really well with my anodized headset and seat post clamp. My other bikes don't have deep scratches that need fixing yet.

These are the cheapest I could find at a store in the shopping mall that is patronized by pre-teen girls. I was sure I would get my bearded sweaty ass arrested for asking a bunch of eleven year old girls for nail polish color advice.
posted by Ayn Rand and God at 1:14 PM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


WHY I DRESS LIKE AN IDIOT

spandex stays comfortable when wet with rain or sweat, and dries quickly

bright colors save money: emergency room trips are expensive, so I dress like a psychotic fruit salad. Also "I didn't see him" can turn a crime into a misdemeanor, and if someone runs me down I want them to suffer for it.

85 percent of my energy is spent moving the air in front of me, so I hope you don't mind if I avoid wearing loose things that flap in the wind

I need to change clothes once I get to work, and nothing packs smaller and dries faster than synthetics

natural fibers in my price range are rougher and hold moisture, which adds up to chafing and rashes in uncomfortable places

sorry to offend you with my appaling clothing choices, and I hope this is the right place for this explanation
posted by idiopath at 2:16 PM on March 28, 2012 [12 favorites]


Man, I dress like an idiot and I don't even have any good reasons for it. Curses.
posted by The World Famous at 2:32 PM on March 28, 2012 [3 favorites]


Now I fix scratches with nail polish. The cool thing is that nail polish comes in thousands of colors, you will most likely find something that matches your bike.

You just went back to the 80’s. There was that, and then the paint jobs with all the splattered colors that sort of emulated covering up a bunch of scratches with different color nail polish and supposedly hid scratches. At least that’s how I heard it back then. That was part of the thinking that acid washed and pre ripped jeans looked like your favorite old worn out jeans (which is also amazingly happening again).
posted by bongo_x at 2:55 PM on March 28, 2012


That was part of the thinking that acid washed and pre ripped jeans looked like your favorite old worn out jeans (which is also amazingly happening again).

That was much bigger a few year ago.
posted by flaterik at 4:08 PM on March 28, 2012


That was much bigger a few year ago.

Yeah, I can’t keep up. I saw some bike forum post with people trying to bring back the paint splatter, but they were from 09, I guess that idea died a quick death.
posted by bongo_x at 4:12 PM on March 28, 2012


SurlyBlue? They've certainly got a cultish following with the cycle-touring crowd, at least in the USA it seems. Nevermind dozens of brands offer similar frames/builds with different paint... people often ask me what to look for in a new bike and all I can tell them is to pick the brand they like the look of the best 'cos there really isn't much difference between all the big brands anymore. Look at trek, they offer bazillions of different models...

Like many things it seems more marketing hype than anything else and I guess with something as simple as a bicycle there isn't much more innovating to do anymore. LOL, surly's big thing is that they sell bikes made of steel... *shrug* Nothing wrong with their bikes per se, but they aren't really anything all that special... my mid 90s hybrid was basically an LHT with flat bars.
posted by glip at 4:41 PM on March 28, 2012


I don't fool myself into thinking I'm not dressed as an idiot, but I prefer to be an idiot dressed in thrift store woolens I have altered for my own bike riding purposes and brightly patterned knee socks. Vive la difference!
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 4:53 PM on March 28, 2012


Everyone knows red bikes are faster.
posted by WASP-12b at 5:01 PM on March 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


Mandymanwasregistered:

if only clothing weren't so gendered. Being on a bike is marginalizing enough without the extra concerns of being seen as queer or mentally ill. Otherwise my options would be much more varied. Also wool takes too long to dry and the weather here is very rainy.
posted by idiopath at 5:14 PM on March 28, 2012


Actually, the only people who comment on the spandex seem to be out-of-shape men, and I could care less. Women seem to like it on me, and for some reason, that's all that matters...
posted by hellslinger at 9:20 PM on March 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'll take "stuff Vince Neil said in the 80s" for $500.
posted by The World Famous at 12:09 AM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Honestly, seeing someone write "yes, you can put a rack on it" relieves a lot of anxiety for me, because I've had a pretty strong feeling that I was breaking some rule by sticking a rack and panniers on my bike.

I'm glad I'm not the only one who was worried about those P-clips.
posted by hnnrs at 12:49 AM on March 29, 2012


We got our 7 year old daughter a brand new bike the day before yesterday, and I belive she still hasn't been able to take the grin off her face. Kid + bike is more of a love story than a "I got something new and shiny" kind of story.
posted by Harald74 at 3:45 AM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


We got our 7 year old daughter a brand new bike the day before yesterday, and I belive she still hasn't been able to take the grin off her face. Kid + bike is more of a love story than a "I got something new and shiny" kind of story.

When my son was 2 or 3 we got him one of those "walking" bikes, basically a bike with no pedals, you just propel it with your feet. He loved it and would zoom around the sidewalk and backyard and stuff. When he was 4 we got him a little razor scooter and when he saw it, he cried, because he thought we would make him give up his little bike. When he found out we wouldn't, he took the scooter for a ride and liked it so much he came back inside, wrote his name on a piece of paper and taped it to the scooter, branding it as His.
posted by RustyBrooks at 7:00 AM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Kid + bike is more of a love story than a "I got something new and shiny" kind of story.

My (now ex-) wife gave me a bike as a birthday present one year. It was the first bike that was mine since childhood.

One day not long after, I found myself riding in a field along a narrow dirt track, not that far from suburbia, and -- thanks to the combination of sight, smell, sound, and feel -- traveled in spacetime back to a similar field thousands of miles away and 20 years before.

Now, thousands of (biking) miles and 10 years after *that*, the love story of kid + bike is still going strong, even when other love stories fade away.
posted by Celsius1414 at 10:40 AM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Harald74: "Kid + bike is more of a love story than a "I got something new and shiny" kind of story."

Looks like a sweet ride for a kid, but shame about the brand name (the site I link here was the top google hit for me, and my only association with that name).
posted by idiopath at 11:38 AM on March 29, 2012


Now, thousands of (biking) miles and 10 years after *that*, the love story of kid + bike is still going strong, even when other love stories fade away.

I wish I said this myself. I have few possessions and even fewer passions. But the ones I have are still almost as unsullied as they were when I was young.

Of course I have very little bike credibility these days - I downsized my bike collection to a single folding bike. And I often take it on the train these days, rather than riding all the way.
posted by Calloused_Foot at 1:10 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


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