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Home » Archives » September 2008 » Beth Hamon Reports from Interbike

Sunday, September 28th
Beth Hamon Reports from Interbike
Beth Hamon, lead buyer for the Citybike Cooperative in Portland and an all-around great gal and dedicated cyclist, reports on her first visit to both Interbike and Las Vegas on her blog, BikeLoveJones. Among other things, she reports with particular enthusiasm on presentations by V-O Imports (associated with Velo Orange), Xtracycle, and Rickshaw bags.

Visit her blog at It will be one of your most worthwhile clicks of the day!

Richard Risemberg on Sun, 28 Sep 2008 14:11:10 -0800 [link]  

Wednesday, September 24th
Safety in Numbers
We've just published a new article by Yer Editor on just what seems to be getting more riders on the road, and what that means for safe cycling...called Safety in Numbers. Take a look!

Richard Risemberg on Wed, 24 Sep 2008 08:03:06 -0800 [link]  

Sunday, September 21st
Oh, Knock It Off!
Bicycle Fixation is proud to announce our first few knock-offs: yes, others have begun copying our designs, cutting corners as is the way of the fashion industry, but still, it's an homage of sorts....

Our first inkling was in a niche market catalog, showing a knicker (not made by them) that looked an awful lot like our Hemp City Knickers, down to the same olive color, contrast stitching, and drawstring cuffs. It was cheaper, too, but only cotton, as I's not on their website now, and our copy of the catalog is long gone.

Next was a small local company touting a cycling hat that had a "short brim and extra loft in the crown"--a good description of our James Black hat!

And now we see a specialty retailer in Berkeley announcing a custom knicker that has a mighty close resemblance to our Classic Wool knickers, changing the button cuff for a buckle. And of course swapping out the 100% wool gabardine for an 80/20 a price considerably above ours!

We're not worried. Few will bother to provide the quality of workmanship and materials we give you, and, let's face it, even in carefully-controlled catalog shots, these knock-offs don't look nearly as good as the Real Thing...which you can get right here at Bicycle Fixation!

And now the poor sods have to try to copy our Four Season Jersey...but frankly I doubt they'll have the guts even to try!

Richard Risemberg on Sun, 21 Sep 2008 20:33:43 -0800 [link]  

Saturday, September 20th
The Gopher Gets 'Em
gopher_drops_small (78k image)The mighty Green Gopher was my ride on Thursday, as I had to fetch a lot of stuff and it was hot, so I didn't want to wear a messenger bag all day. Those beat-up old JANDD panniers, utilitarian though they may be, swallowed up a good load of goods: old Business Journals to drop off at my kid's house, a T-shirt Chuck Schmidt had printed up for me for a rush order, a couple of yards of folded-up foam for a (non-BF) project, rubber-block pedals so that Gina can ride the Milk Runner in fancy shoes, and probably some other stuff I've forgotten.

The Gopher may be slow, but he sure is handy sometimes...I think, though, that I'd like to gear him down by one cog tooth (he's a fixie), both to compensate for his weight--he's much heavier than the Bambina, my Bottecchia fixie--and in preparation for the cargo trailer I can never afford.

He does, with his big Vittoria Randonneur Pro tires, crash over asphalt heaves, potholes, and cracks with a casual aplomb, so as long as I'm not feeling frisky, he's a good ride.

And I had tweaked my back reaching for something earlier that day, so it was doubly nice to go at a relaxed pace.

No point in hurrying unless you really have to. And you don't often really have to. The Gopher's stateliness reminds me of that when the Bambina would just be saying, "Come on, let's go!"

Richard Risemberg on Sat, 20 Sep 2008 15:02:32 -0800 [link]  

Thursday, September 18th
Busy Week
We've had a busy week at BF, with orders for multiple items coming in every day, as well as the usual onesies... lots of interest from overseas and Canada as well, which means more paperwork to fill out. But that's a good kind of problem!

I've been keeping up my short blog over on, if you're interested in short velocipedal notes and observations, and I'm ready to get back to work on the city bikes book for OYB, now that I've had an email confab with editor Jeff Potter.

Fall is coming, and winter will follow, so check out our Four Season Jersey and our refreshed stock of Classic Wool Knickers; selling the clothes we design not only supports Bicycle Fixation's articles, features, and galleries, but helps people like you spend more time on the road on their bikes, and that's our real mission here.

Hope to get some new articles up soon too--keep an eye on us!

Richard Risemberg on Thu, 18 Sep 2008 22:25:43 -0800 [link]  

Thursday, September 11th
Are We on LSD? Brand-New Bargain Knickers!
As we like to do on every product run, we've made another limited-edition, this time of our Classic Wool Knickers. The last one was extra-fine and very expensive; this season's is still very fine, but not expensive at all: meet the LSD Limited Special Deal edition of the classic knickers!

These are NOT wool, but Italian rayon--still gabardine, still beautiful, but not suited for as wide a temperature range as the ones made of real sheep hair. Also, they look more like silk than wool. they're still great-looking knickers, should be very durable, and we can sell them for only $95.00!

Rayon, by the way, though a synthesized fabric, is made of wood, not oil.

Very limited quantities, and available only in sizes 32, 34, 36, and 38. When they're gone, they're gone.

See them at the LSD Knickers page!

Richard Risemberg on Thu, 11 Sep 2008 20:01:57 -0800 [link]  

Tuesday, September 9th
Classic Wool Knickers Back in Stock
We now have the Classic Wool Knickers back in stock in sizes 30, 32, 34, 36, 38, and 42. These are the dark charcoal gray cloth we have been using for over a year, and which is both elegant and tough. We have also redesigned the gusset at the cuff to prevent it from flying out--hence the slight ($4) price increase. Click here to buy.

We will be releasing a new Limited Edition of the Classic Knickers, this time at a lower price, because we got a good deal on a Italian wool blend gabardine. Please note that these are not 100% wool! Their page should be up in a few days.

Also, don't forget that the Four Season jersey in both 100% New Zealand merino wool or a blend of hemp and organic cotton is available now! Click here to buy

There's nothing else like this jersey available anywhere else at any price, and once these are gone, we won't be making more till late next summer.

Richard Risemberg on Tue, 09 Sep 2008 14:38:42 -0800 [link]  

Monday, September 8th
Sport Futility
So we got up a little after 4AM and rode through a soft, gray night to Venice Beach, to ride in the bike-only wave of the Los Angeles Triathlon.

The multidimensional bureaucratic chaos continued at the staging area, where we could not find a single person amongst wearers of official event shirts who could tell us where the particular staging area was for our bunch. We did note a particularly well-developed skill at shrugging shoulders, though, leading me to believe that all event assistants were former swimmers, no doubt triathletes themselves. We walked the entire expanse of the staging area before finding the corner designated for the bike-only riders. Oddly, it was the only section that included no bike stands....

After sticking, pinning, and scrawling various numbers on our persons, garments, and bikes, we made a run for the Porta-Potty stations, for time was short and lines were long. Fortunately we had but standing duty to fulfill, as toilet paper had long since run out. We were back at our bikes with four or five minutes to spare.

The metallic voice of the announcer rang out regularly over the P.A., and finally the bike-only wave was released--with the severe admonition not to mount our bikes till we had crossed the blue line--an admonition repeated so often and so vigorously by both the amplifier and the yellowshirts on the ground that it began to feel like the section in Pink Floyd's "The Wall" where the headmaster screams repeatedly, "How can y' have any pudding if y' don't eat yer meat?"

The blessed blue line crossed at last, we could fit toes to pedals and begin riding. Back, in fact, precisely the way we had come, since the course ran not only back to our neighborhood but passed within two hundred feet of our bedroom. I looked wistfully down our street as we whizzed by, passed at close quarters by the serious triathletes, who seem to take more pleasure in buzzing us than benighted SUV drivers do in cutting off bike commuters.... Of course, I was on my fendered fixie, and Gina was riding her nickel-plated randonneuse, and we were not trying to win anything.

Just west of downtown the course met some serious hills, where I could at last pass everyone in sight...after which I had to wait for Gina, since I was there to be by her side. Bless her, rather than cutting over to the shorter Sprint course, she elected to stay on the Olympic route, which she finished at an average speed of 15.2mph--not at all bad for someone whose training consisted of rides to the mall two miles off, and one 25-mile beach run last week.

The end of the course entered LA Live, a sort of mall crossbred out of "Blade Runner" and Times Square, replete with LED signs and kiosks everywhere. The promised free beer was not in sight, but cookies and fruit were, and I did my best to minimize waste of resources by eating as much of same as I could.

Then, as it was close to ten o' clock, and I didn't want to miss Chuck Schmidt's monthly Rose Bowl ride, I rode to Union Station to catch a Gold Line metro to Pasadena. Gina rode with me as far as the café next door to Pete's, a charming little place whose name neither of us can ever remember, and I went on to catch my train.

Safe until next year!

Richard Risemberg on Mon, 08 Sep 2008 14:18:03 -0800 [link]  

Saturday, September 6th
Basket Fixie
Fixie with front basketWith my usual apology for the Crappy Cellphone Picture, I present this shot of a cute little fixie with a basket, parked in the crappy bike rack in from the the Marina del Rey Marriott hotel.

I had to go there to register for the bike-only leg of the Los Angeles Triathlon, which Gina signed up for, and then with much batting of eyelashes asked me to go too, to keep her company.

She got in free as her employer is one of the sponsors, but we had to pay for my entry--for the chance to ride streets I ride every day, but this time in the company of notoriously bad bike handlers who actually worry me far more than LA traffic does.

The chaos of private, public, and NGO bureaucracy that accompanied the signing-up process didn't help my mood yesterday, but seeing that little basket fixie did, so I snapped the picture with what I had at hand, and there it is.

Richard Risemberg on Sat, 06 Sep 2008 19:49:02 -0800 [link]  

Friday, September 5th
Website Fixed!
Users of Internet Explorer saw a scrambled Bicycle Fixation website for the last two or three days, thanks to an errant quotation mark in the CSS file. We have fixed that now, so please, all you RSS readers, check us out and see what you've been missing.

Don't forget to view our new Four Season Jersey too!

Richard Risemberg on Fri, 05 Sep 2008 16:28:32 -0800 [link]  

Hemp Blend Jerseys Now Available!
Okay, we've sorted things out (literally, on the dining room table), and now the hemp/organic cotton blend Four Season Jerseys, aka the Ninja Road Warrior jerseys, are on the website as well. (With all the ninja references the integrated balaclava generates, I decided to go with that as an alternate moniker for the things!) Thirty-five bucks less expensive than the merino version, but with a narrower temperature range.

See 'em, love 'em, buy 'em here: Merino or Hemp Hooded Jerseys.

Richard Risemberg on Fri, 05 Sep 2008 08:48:28 -0800 [link]  

Thursday, September 4th
Liberating 4th Street
Just posted a little blurb on traffic, 4th St., and bicycle boulevards on my blog at a look at Liberating 4th Street if you like--and look at the rest of my blogs there too. New site, still working out the kinks, but it has definite possibilities.

Richard Risemberg on Thu, 04 Sep 2008 10:17:34 -0800 [link]  

Wednesday, September 3rd
Two Out of Three Ain't Bad!
Two of the three versions of our Four Season Jersey (AKA the Ninja Road Warrior Jersey) are now available for purchase through our shopping cart!

This brand-new design is available in 100% New Zealand merino wool in charcoal gray, with a limited supply in burnt orange as well; by next week we will also have, at a lesser price, a black version in a blend of hemp and organic cotton.

The jersey is cut for riding, with an extended tail and full-length zipper, and features a front breast pocket, a rear button pocket, and an integrated balaclava for the really cold days. The face covering of the balaclava can be left loose or buttoned back for gentler weather, or left to hang behind. Either way the jersey looks trim and dashing!

It's been a long time coming, so take a look now--we ordered only seventy pieces in total, and many of the orange have already sold.


Richard Risemberg on Wed, 03 Sep 2008 21:36:26 -0800 [link]  

Tuesday, September 2nd
We're on Twitter
Bicycle Fixation is on Twitter now, so if you want notification by web or phone of bloggings, rides, or tiny newsbriefs, or just need to know when we're hanging out at the coffeehouse, sign up for Twitter. We gained two "followers" even before we'd posted anything, so it looks like people really do use it. And there does appear to be a lot of journalistic as well as personal news flowing through it.

You can also follow our sister publication, The New Colonist, at its own Twitter site.

Richard Risemberg on Tue, 02 Sep 2008 18:25:01 -0800 [link]  

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