Two Wheels - Six Strings

Random news and thoughts about various two-wheeled projects and music, especially my band, Skull Full Of Blues.

Monday, June 24, 2013

All My Gloving...

How do you go from this...

to this...?

Ten thousand miles of motorcycling and bicycling will do the trick.

The goatskin Petzl Cordex Belay Gloves have been my favorites, ever since I got my first pair, 4 years ago. I biked in them, a lot, for a while (and still do, quite a bit), plus they are my go-to glove for summer and spring/fall motorcycling. I wear a glove liner under them, if the temps are in the 40s or 50s.

I actually like the "lived in" look of the old pair, but the leather is wearing thin (there is a hole in the middle finger of the left glove, from working the clutch), so I don't think that they would afford much protection in a crash.

So, I got some fresh new ones at REI, the other day.  Soon, they will show the wear and tear of well-used, well-loved equipment (what Grant Petersen call "beausage" - beauty from usage), just like the others.


Sunday, June 23, 2013

Friday Fun

On Friday, Steve, Carol and I tooled around town on our bikes for about 6 hours. We were dropping off tickets to the show, and hanging posters, and just generally having fun on bikes.

Eric Chavez, at work, Photoshopped Steve and me into the Easy Rider picture, and emailed it to me, the other day. So, I redid the poster for the fourth (and final) time. I think it's great. I love the obviousness of the 'shop, and I think it might be good to have our faces on the poster so that people might realize that SFOB is us (especially at the coffee shop, and other places where people know us by sight).

Right in the middle of the ride, the derailleur on Carol's road bike suddenly pulled up into the chain and locked up the cranks. I took a look at it, and saw that the tab through which the B-tension screw runs had snapped off.

Carol's broken derailleur...

An unbroken derailleur, for comparison...

The B-tension screw adjusts the distance that the top pulley of the derailleur maintains from the cog. This allows you to set the derailleur as close to the cogs as possible (for crisp shifting), without having the pulley touch the cog. Luckily, the bike was still rideable, even though the pulley was, indeed, touching the cogs, and we finished out the day with no real problems.

But, since Carol is riding that bike in the MS-150, next Saturday, I needed to get the derailleur replaced. It is a late-90s Campagnolo, and, while I should be able to get the part to fix it, I knew that I would not be able to do so before next weekend. So, I took the rear derailleur off of Carol's old commuter, and replaced the broken unit on her road bike. 

She has my XO-2 on "permanent loan", and uses it as her commuter, now. So the old commuter is destined to give up its parts to another project, anyway.

We ended up with 25 miles of stop-n-go riding for the day, met some new friends and, hopefully, gained some audience members for our upcoming show, all at the same time.

Too bad that Carol is going to miss the show, though...


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Where Did All the Bloggers Go?

Facebook, apparently.

One of the things I love about blogging is that there is a community, of sorts, which builds  up between people who are interested in similar things. If you search for things that interest you, and start checking out the blogs on the subject, you can occasionally find like-minded people with whom you make a connection.

In fact, I have a few people (some of whom I have met personally ... some not) whom I consider as friends on the basis of our bloggy interactions. Unfortunately, a few of those people have ceased blogging, altogether. I keep up with what they are up to, kinda, through Facebook. But, that is a pretty bare-bones version of their lives, if you know what I mean.

I miss the details, to be quite honest.

The thing is, I would never have met these people if they weren't bloggers. Google searches on "bicycle commuting" don't connect you to Facebook pages.

I miss you guys. And I wonder who else I am never even coming across because of the whole "social media" craze.

Anyway ... I know that it's no longer cool, but I will continue blogging (and posting links to the blog on FB, by the way). Hope to see you, soon.


Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Mukluk Is No More

Riding into the proverbial sunset...

I sent the Mukluk home with a new owner, this evening. Only the second person to respond to my ad, the fellow who bought it plans to use it as a back-country hunting rig, this winter

 He didn't want the Surly Open Bar, so I swapped out a flat bar and let him keep the pedals. The bar cost me more than the pedals, so I actually came out ahead on that. I have plans for that bar, now, anyway...

I hated to get rid of the rig. It is an awfully cool bike, but I recently bought a second Gibson guitar to use in the band, and I really didn't have the money. So, I figure this was, essentially, a trade of the bike for the guitar.

I will replace the bike, eventually, with something similar but different, if all goes according to plan. But, when does that ever happen?


Sunday, June 02, 2013

Not A Lot Of Bicycling Going On, Lately

I am woefuly behind on my bike goals for the year, in no small part due to the fact that we have had winter-like weather freakishly late, this year. A lot of the mountain bike trails I want to hit are still unrideable, and i just havent't had a lot of opportunities to get to the local trails because of stuff like this:

 I finally got around to mowing the back yard, today, for the first time, this year.

It was a bit of a chore. Add household duties like this to doing bike repairs and practicing with the band, and a lot of my former bike-riding time has disappeared.

Oh, well. I hope to make up for some of the lost time, soon. Summer seems to finally be arriving, so I hope to get up in the mountains, soon. In the meantime, I am preparing for our next show at Herman's Hideaway, on Saturday the 29th of June.

Six PM, if you can make it...