Saturday, 25 October 2014

I heard it on the Radio...



I did a short phone interview with Swen and Gomez for the USA Fatbike website FAT-BIKE.COM
The guys hope to come over here to the next FORTH FAT 2015 weekend, be great to see them!,
5 mis 30 sec in...

Weekly Dose of Fat Radio - 10-24-14 Show #27

More soon...

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Minions!


Everyone needs a Minion!

I just got myself two! :)

Got some Maxxis 29 x 2.5 DHF skins for the Monkey for winter trails.  The tyres are nice and bloated on the Rabbit Hole rims and plenty tyre/chain clearance (3x9 with Monkey Nuts fitted). rims are heli taped so will do them tubeless when i can find my valve conversion end thingy in the man-cave :)





Gimme some Skin!;
I always used to ride with Minion tyres at Trail centres and Downhill Uplift days at Innerliethen,  good strong dependable tyres then have been. I hoped they would eventually bring out a wide 29er version. When i saw them i grabbed a pair, got a cheap price for them here; next day tyres.co.uk
I also have a new pair of 2.1 Maxxis High Rollers on the drop bar Monkey, they too are ideal for that bikes riding. Both bikes are now done at last!..



3" Surly Knard Tyre - Maxxis 2.5  on Rabbit Hole Rims size Comparison;
The 3" Surly Knard tyre on the left does not look that much bigger in this pic for comparison...


Though it it 5-8mm wider, and rides with more `cushioning` than the 2.5 Maxxis tyre...


But that was just bopping around the garden!, after sliding all over the place last week on that steep off camber descent i filmed on the bike with the old worn GEAX Gato tyres these new Minions will be a big improvement...


Not been out to try them yet this week so here is some other Minion film :)



More soon...

Monday, 20 October 2014

Coastal sandstorm cycling!, and re released Boards of Canada EP out!


A re  released Boards of Canada EP `Hi Scores` arrived through the post last week, pre ordered, i was looking forward to this. You can read a review here on Pitchfork, and here is a link to the fan site bocfanpages.org

5 years ago...
It was 5 years ago i discovered Boards of Canada`s unique music when i came across Dayvan Cowboy on Youtube, a fantastic tune...


It was watching the film i discovered about `Project Excelsior` and would then do a short blog post, this is the sort of stuff i love to blog when not cycling, you can read the blog post Here...
I then realised over the next year or so i was listening to BOC as backing music quite often on TV programmes.

Music to Cycle to...
Since discovering BOC 5 years ago i have spent many hours in the saddle on the coast with their tunes in my head. I find their rhythmic beats great to cycle to. The tempo went well with the weird halo effects of the early films i made with the old 90 degree lens Tachyon SD cameras. And then later through the fish eye lens of the Go Pro Hero 2 sports camera...

This song is a favourite; Buckie High



I don`t think anyone else had made cycling films to their music before, mind you no one else had made coastal cycling films either...





BOC music still fits the changing moods of the weather and light on the coast for filming, There is a song for every visit to the coast...

With the EP playing in my headphones on my old i pod mini, i was down at John Muir Park Sunday affy for a quick fat-fix ride in wild windy sand blowing conditions..









I shot some Go Pro chest cam on a sand blown loop around Spike Island on a near deserted beach. Edited down from one continuous clip of 25 minutes to the 1st track of the re released EP,
click on the cog icon thingy to view in HD
Song is `Hi Scores-2014`



Or watch on Vimeo straight to HD with no pop up adverts



More soon...

FORTH FAT 2015! Date set; 9th & 10th May 2015



Date now set for Forth Fat 2015!, same format as last two years, nice and simples :)
Differant food venue for Saturday late afffy- be going to the Seabird Centre, or your choice to eat at the nearby Lobster Shack or Rocketeer.

Friday 8th May; The Quickening!
The Tantallon Caravan & Camping Park is delighted to see us all again next year and the on line booking for 2015 will be available early 2015, i will post up when they start taking bookings. To book accommodation if you are camping, camper van, or the wooden wigwam`s click here; Tantallon Caravan & Camping Park;

http://www.meadowhead.co.uk/TantallonHome.aspx

Friday late afternoon and into the evening will be the usual Friday evening like previous Fatbike Gatherings of meeting new arrivals, talking fatbikes, tyre pinching and meeting friends new and old who can make it...
Usually anyone staying in the local B&Bs and some local riders come round to the Gathering campsite too.

Saturday 9th May;
We will ride from the campsite at 10am on the dot. And ride down to the Celtic cross at the Victorian Bathing pond. Everyone else riding on the Saturday can meet us at the Celtic Cross if they have no ridden up to the campsite before 10am.
10.30am we head off!. We will ride via the West beach at North Berwick then on the sandy loam trails of the John Muir Way as last year to Yellowcraig and then on to Gullane-the plan is to get everyone along Gullane and up Gullane Hill from where everyone will be together, some riders will join the group along the way and hopefully we can do a shuttle to Gullane for those that want to save their legs a bit.
From Gullane Hill we descend along to the cliffs then across the Reserve and out to the WW2 sub wrecks at Aberlady Bay. We then will ride the 7 or 8 miles east along the coast back to North Berwick.
Again there will be options along the route to ride the easy flat sand or tackle some of the rocky sections exposed by the low tide.
Once we roll into North Berwick we will go for Fish and chips or foof of your choice at North Berwick`s Seabird centre, . We can sit outside or inside. There is suitable space outside for the bikes to be parked, so bring a lock!.  Other good food choice is the nearby Rocketeer and Lobster Shack.  After food a quick pint or two along at the Ship Inn- optional ride up North Berwick Law to for those that want to see the views of East Lothians coast :)

Saturday evening;
For those that want a beer or two or just socialise we will return to the campsite/B&Bs etc to lock up and secure the bikes around 6-7pm, then head down to meet at the `Ship Inn`. Remember your driving at 10am the next morning ;)

Bike Security;
Due to the publicity of last years FORTH FAT Bike security is a priority for Saturday evening, so we will return to campsite/B&B`s etc to lock them up secure.

Sunday 10th May;
Sunday morning we will pack up and leave the campsite 10am and drive to Whitekirk Golf and Country Club. Parking up in the car park we will meet up with everyone else who is coming on the Sunday half day cycle, then ride from the car park at 11am. For directions google Whitekirk Golf and Country Club EH39 5PR

We will ride to Seacliff harbour, then ride east along the coast to Peffersands where you can have a go surfing down the dunes-or spectate!, then we will ride on and ride the single track above the coast including the `Secret Trail`, before returning through to Whitekirk Golf and Country Club for lunch-Sunday afternoons is the Carvery. The plan is to wrap things up around 3pm for everyone who has a long journey home.

Stickers!
Hopefully we will have stickers again by Gil to hand out to everyone who makes the weekend or one of the two days riding. Maybe some goodies to hand out too!

North Berwick Town;
Everyone be aware of and please adhere to the one way traffic system around North Berwick Town please!.
If approaching the Celtic Cross on Saturday morning from the east of the town (Marine Parade) drop onto the east beach. pavements are narrow in the town-except out side the Ship Inn/Fish and chip shop so be aware of not blocking pedestrians-esp the elderly!. Thanks!.

See you there whether you ride one of , or both days of the weekend. Look forward to new faces who are turning up along with old friends!... :)


Saturday, 18 October 2014

(Surly Karate) Monkey Magic!




As previously featured my black Surly Karate Monkey has finally become a rigid drop bar geared 29er-also known as a Monster-cross, though i have no intention of racing the thing!...


So with the monster cross 29er whole thing wrapped up in my N+1 bike collection i needed to put together a front suspension forked regular moutainbike-in my case this is a 29er steel framed wide rim 29er,,,
I gave up trying to find a secondhand Surly Karate Monkey, folks just don`t sell them often, prob as you can set them up in so many ways as i have done. So i bought a cheap On One Inbred 29er frame to build,
It was a nice and cheap build with this frame, but for not a lot more a secondhand KM would ride so much better, weeks after i bought the Inbred frame mate Sanny said our friend Gary still has a grey un built Monkey frame set still in the box that i previously i thought had been sold,
A deal was struck, i have since sold the On One frame and loads of other stuff on eBay to cover the costs and i bought the frame set...



Time to swap the frames over and use the 50mm wide Surly Rabbit Hole wheels for a bit more float  and grip to the 29er tyres...time for a cider or two during the build as Friday evening...





1mm offset `Works Components` headset to slow the steering slightly...


Other than that and the secondhand Rabbit Hole rims the build is basic budget parts, £100 Rock Shok fork,
Shimano LX Deore 3x9 drive chain and cranks...





:)


Loads of frame clearance  on the KM with the wide rims puffing up the 2.2" tyres...

And good Tyre/chain clearance...


and chain line...


This is something Surly are real good at doing...

Nearly finished!

The KM frame also suits the JanDD frame pack better than the OO Inbred did, ideal for keeping pump, tools, spare tube and light battery clean and dry winter riding...

After the pics above i swapped out the flat bars for 720mm wide 50mm risers as i prefer them, alloy pedals cause the plastic flat pedals are slippy in the wet, and added a rear Crud Catcher, and borrowed the Surly Monkey Nuts  from the KramPug to space the rear wheel for the front mech to clear, another pair is ordered and waiting on delivery from Charlie Bikemonger,...

Quick shakedown ride around the local Garleton Hills and through some of the woods and all was well...







Here is some film of the swap over build and test ride, no nailing it this time, but instead down a really steep off camber descent of loose stones and wet roots after the previous evenings rain. This bike deft needs mud tyres after riding the fatbikes on grippy Nates!,

When did you last here Hendrix on Radio 1?... :)
Second song is `Twice` by Little Dragon
As usual with Youtube click on the cog icon to view in HD...




Or watch on Vimeo with no annoying no pop up adds and the film goes straight to HD quality...


More soon...

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Into Autumn...New winter Boots, Work Jeans, and Surly Karate Monkey Drop bar 29er musings...



Mid October and there is an Autumn chill in the air now!,
Some lovely Autumn days this week, cooler this week on the ride into work...



This week at work has been typical Autumn weather of blue sky, broken and fluffy clouds and lovely light...











Been cycling to work this week on the Black Surly Karate Monkey,
This frame set has had quite a few builds:
Rigid forks, then suspension forks, then back to rigid,
Regular 29er wheels and lately 50mm wide Surly Rabbit hole wheels, then back to the Halo 29er rims!,
MTB rider bars,  Cyclo-cross drop bars and now Salsa Woodchipper semi drop bars,
Bar end shifter 3x9, single speed, and back to 3x9 gears with STI shifters!

Well finally it has been built and will stay like this in a Monster-Cross build,







Post ride detours home from work...


Surly Work Jeans;
Been needing a thick winter work trouser i can cycle in, and hey presto these have turned up by Surly!

With the seam cut for cycling these are real comfy...






They have popper studs to pull in the crank side leg which is neat...

I will do a review of the jeans after a few months use, but i can so far say these jeans are real comfy and ace!
And check out the new shoes! :)

Shimano MT91 Winter Boots;
After 9 years faithful service my old Shimano MT90 boots have had their day with the soles now warped after miles and miles of cycling. So i bought the replacement MT91 boot last week...




SPD compatible these are a sweet combo with Time pedals...

A good addition to the cycling shoe rack, these will get a review after a few months use...


Autumn, a time of leave strewn trails...

And loads of berries around and mushrooms in the woods, but watch what you eat that you find while out cycling, film by Surly lol...


Autumn is of course also the Apple Harvest,,,  Cider! :)


And sleeping through the long dark evenings... lol

Back onto the subject of Monkeys, there is another in the cave... better get busy with the spanners...
More soon...