The Bikes

by / / 11974 posts

The Bike. It is the central tool in pursuit of our craft. A Velominatus meticulously maintains their bicycles and adorns them with the essential, yet minimal, accoutrement. The Rules specify the principles of good taste in configuration and setup of our machines, but within those principles lies almost infinite room for personal taste.

It seems in some ways like a kind of Stockholm Syndrom, the way we honor our machines. We love them to a point that lies well beyond obsession. Upon these machines upon we endure endless suffering, but also find an unending pleasure. The rhythm, the harmony between rider and machine, the outdoors, the wind in our faces and air in our lungs.

The Bikes is devoted entirely to our machines. Ours, The Keepers, and yours, the Community. It features articles devoted to our bikes, and proves a forum for uploading photos of your own machines for discussion. We will be harsh, but fair; this is a place to enforce and enhance our observation of The Rules.

If you’d like to submit an article about your own beloved bike, please feel free to send it to us and we’ll do our best to work with you to include it.

  • Guest Article: The Emonda and the Montello The Red EmondaIt is important to have a steel bike and a carbon bike and maybe a titanium bike. It just is. The steel bike might not be ridden too often but it is worthy bike to ride. A steel frame will be heavier and less stiff but it will feel great. For many of us, we ...
  • How Soon Is Now? Eddy waits for his JaegherWaiting has never been my strong point. I’m anxious, but don’t really suffer from anxiety. Good things come to those who wait isn’t at the top of my list of proverbs to live by. Do What Thou Wilt always has been, though; kind of a Just Do It for early 20th century Satanists, and me. It ...
  • Where Have You Been All My Life? Yes, indeedLife is full of surprises. Some you don’t want, like a funnel web in a shoe, while others are completely unexpected but more than welcome, even if you are then left with figuring out the hows, whys and HOW?s of the serendipitous conundrum now presented to you. This is how I now feel, after fate knocked ...
  • Joe Kid on a Moto-Bike My Yamaha Moto-Bike, circa 74?Never forget your roots, they say… OK, I’m a child of the 70’s, and back then bicycles were as big a part of my life as they are today. We’d always be out riding, building tracks and jumps, and tinkering with our Dragsters, stripping them down to emulate our motocross heroes, with varying results. All these memories came flooding ...
  • The Reflective Bike of Authority Black reflective tape on the Rain BikeEveryone knows you need at least three road bikes – two if you’re absolutely determined to make a point about minimalism. Bike Number One is reserved for good weather and events, and the Rain Bike for inclement weather. Just like our guns need to be pampered and rubbed down whenever we’re off the bike, any ...
  1. @Roger

    is that a Nashbar Carbon?

  2. @osbk67

    That is a gorgeous ride.  I’m digging the subtle Merckx tribute colors.

  3. @VeloVita

    @EricW

    What type of beans did you use?

    I was thinking the same thing!

    Eric, nice bike, congratulations on the promotion and marriage, a promotion Up the Ladder and Up the Foodchain, no longer a dirtbag bachelor just datin’ and ridin’ bikes.

    Pretty sure VV was wondering about the canned goods you used to prop the bike up in the photo…

  4. My 3 year old Velomini (lexicon addition?) is on the point of growing out of his first balance bike, so I was looking at alternatives for his next bike. He’s well into riding (and has embodied Rule #5 and Rule #10 in his process of learning to ride) so I don’t mind spending a bit to get him something decent. So I was very interested when I saw these:

    https://www.littlebigbikes.com/

    They are balance bikes that adjust to get a bit bigger, and can also fit a crank, chain and pedals. So they are really 3 bikes in one. Seems a really good idea, but I’d thought I’d put it to the class to see if anyone had any thoughts. Here’s a picture for those who can’t be bothered to click links;

  5. @EricW

    Cheers thanks. Merckx’s Molteni-era frames were in my mind when I chose the colour. Not sure the bar tape will last though… Have some old Record hubs waiting for silver rims and a rainy day to free the Protons for a newer bike… Then I’ll start thinking about some Record Pista or Pista Superleggera pedals. It goes on…

  6. @RobSandy

    Very cool. Those balance bikes are certainly the way forward and I like the way you can fit a drive train. Even better if you can get them involved in the process; what better way to learn to maintain your bike properly.

    Velomini is should be in the Lexicon. I’ve always referred to mine as Velominippers (but I suppose that’s possibly more of a brit/aussie/kiwi thing). Eitherway, a pre-pedalwan designation should be in.

  7. @RobSandy

    Interesting concept.

    I’m a big fan of the balance bikes but I wonder how a bike with a seat low enough to be used as a push-along would work when you attached cranks.

    I’d have thought that the next step was to go to a proper little bike with cranks, once they’ve got the balance right.

  8. It’s very clever how the chainstays and seat mast upturn – that looks like it would be very versatile!

  9. @RobSandy

    ORBEA do something similar with their Grow range

  10. @RobSandy

    I put my kids on little “mtn” bikes with gears asap. I wanted them to understand gearing and how to use it. Plus, the local park has trails. I’m not sure I’d do it again. The short chain stays just don’t mesh well with changing gears and bikes are heavy w/cheap spring forks. What I’d do today is go straight to the BMX bike. Simple, light and go anywhere. My daughter has some pretty sweet full on race bikes and her go to to run around the neighborhood? Her little BMX bike. Kids like BMX bikes for good reason: Simple, light and go anywhere. The bike your looking at looks like it fits that description though the BMX bike might be even more simple. Having 2(n+1) in the house is much fun isn’t it! Cheers

  11. @wilburrox

    Thanks for the advice, all. I’m in no hurry to get my lad pedaling. He can do anything he wants to do without at the moment (which includes some tricks he’s made up).

    The Little Big Bike should do him until he’s 6/7, and then I’d go for a mtn bike/bmx. I always had bmx’s as a kid, probably good to get the hang of riding and bike control without the faff of having gears.

    I just really like the idea of a balance bike that you can add pedals to as and when needed. I’ve found out our local outdoor velodrome runs balance bike sessions for the under 5s. Awesome!

  12. Eagerly awaiting the new #1.

    Aluminium frame 6069, lighter than (some) carbonframes. 8kg, and could be less if I wanted to throw more money at the Group-san (now Ultegra) or rims, which I am not.

  13. Oops, I pasted a picture but it did not pop up after I’d posted the comment. Must be security settings or me being not accredited. Anyway, it’s a blue Koga Signature, handmade, Shimano Ultegra.

    Pictures of similar bike can be found under http://roadcyclinguk.com/gear/eurobike-2013-koga-unveil-lightweight-a-limited-aluminium-race-frame.html#ihKmdk8vqo7ic1Wk.97

  14. @RobSandy

    My children used a balance bike and that got them into pedaling before they turned three. None of them ever used side-wheels. However, once they rode a normal bike, they still very often went back to the balance bike probably because they were simply more adept on it. Once they got a little older we got them a bigger bike, since doing a few kilometers on those single speed, 12-inch, tiny bikes is horrible. Did you ever notice the cadence you have to have? A bike for a 3 year old is different from a bike for a 6-year old, even if it fits their size.

    I have no experience with those Little Big bikes, although we looked into something alike when the middle one started riding a bike, but then decided against it since he could simply use his older brother’s bikes.

    The youngest (4,5y) is now outgrowing his first (3th handed) bike, but he still uses the balance bike if he just wants to have fun. And it’s impressive to see him on it (although I often hold my heart).
    The middle one (6y) loves his BMX but I probably should mention that it has three gears since he uses it also to go to school and on ‘family-rides’ (to the playground, into town) (but give him some muddy puddles or tiny ‘jumps’ and you hear him ecstatic from a km away).

  15. @GogglesPizano

    Wow!!!  Just F$%king wow!

    http://pelotonmagazine.com/goods/eddy-merckx-custom-bike-eddy-70/

    I take it the first Wow is the bike and the second the price?

  16. @RobSandy

    My Velominipper started on a wooden balance bike and rode it into the ground (I’ve got some decent video of her riding over logs with it somewhere). She’s now on a Giant Animator 16 but as she’s coming up on 6 years the cockpit is getting a bit tight.

    I like the suggestion by @wilburrox of a BMX being the next step and I agree with staying away from gears. Take the usual “dense core of a dead star” metal and dart board geometry they build kid’s bikes with and now picture building a multi-gear drivetrain with it… not good.

    Personally I wouldn’t worry about pedals too much. I saw a 5 year old doing park tricks and drops on his balance bike in Whistler a few years back. No pedals didn’t seem to slow him down.

  17. @Ron

    @VeloVita

    @EricW

    What type of beans did you use?

    I was thinking the same thing!

    Eric, nice bike, congratulations on the promotion and marriage, a promotion Up the Ladder and Up the Foodchain, no longer a dirtbag bachelor just datin’ and ridin’ bikes.

    Pretty sure VV was wondering about the canned goods you used to prop the bike up in the photo…

    OOOOHHHHHH…Trader Joe’s refried…or as one of my riding buddies calls it: afterburner fuel.

  18. @osbk67

    You know, now you’ve got me thinking “I’ve always wanted an orange bike”.

  19. @Teocalli

    @GogglesPizano

    Wow!!!  Just F$%king wow!

    http://pelotonmagazine.com/goods/eddy-merckx-custom-bike-eddy-70/

    I take it the first Wow is the bike and the second the price?

    Within 24 hours they’ve almost sold out

    EVERYONE should see this http://eddy70.com/

  20. Quick question – are latex tubes any less happy with periodic riding than butyl tubes?

    I store my Tommasini in a bike buddies shed (until I can build my own, house is at max n+5 capacity) and only ride it every few weeks. It hangs in his four car garage, along with his ten bikes. I’d like to switch over from butyl to latex, ride latex tubes on most of my bikes. Wondering if it will be less happy with intermittent riding and being stored in a garage, as in will it be more prone to dry rotting, the conditions, etc. He often leaves the garage doors open. I’m in a pretty moderate climate in central NC.

  21. @ped

    @Teocalli

    @GogglesPizano

    Wow!!!  Just F$%king wow!

    http://pelotonmagazine.com/goods/eddy-merckx-custom-bike-eddy-70/

    I take it the first Wow is the bike and the second the price?

    Within 24 hours they’ve almost sold out

    EVERYONE should see this http://eddy70.com/

    Yeah it is an amazing bike…  I will defintiely be looking hard at the production models in September…

  22. @Teocalli

    @GogglesPizano

    Wow!!!  Just F$%king wow!

    http://pelotonmagazine.com/goods/eddy-merckx-custom-bike-eddy-70/

    I take it the first Wow is the bike and the second the price?

    No kidding… that’d be the F$%king wow indeed. I’d think one could get a pretty hot smokin’ gorgeous bike hand made WITH custom geo for a little less and still have some coin left over for Sidi wires and a Silca pump. And then maybe even some change for Silca’s “Ultra Premium CO2 Cartridges”. Uhh, yea. CO2 cartridges. Ultra-premium. CO2. Cartridges… WTF.

  23. One would have to celebrate each ride on the Eddy70 with a dram of Macallan 1926 while sitting in a robe on a leather chair watching your personal mechanical hand clean the bike with a badger hair brush and a carpathian chamois.

    Please Merckx let a good portion of these 69 bikes be ridden.

  24. 2015 project is to build up an 8-speed starting with this gem. Tube shifters!

Leave a Reply