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Monday, April 20, 2009

happy holiday

Computer-chair potato-ing much today? Crank the volume, set fullscreen, and enjoy these two shorts about riding bikes in Eugene.

Now get off your butt and go ride around in the sun.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Kyle's paintjob

The spare-parts bike I built for my good friend Kyle awhile back has been treating him well mechanically, but, as always, there's just one problem: inadequate rust protection. So I picked it up from him yesterday.

Here it is in his driveway, resting against his deceased Pontiac. I also nabbed a wheel I had left at his place using the bike's newest feature: a handy basket!

Most parts came off with small metric wrenches and hex keys; no fancy tools, no cable-cutting. Here, all that remains is the bottom bracket, crankset, pedals and headset. With some careful taping, the bike could be painted at this point. It wouldn't be the prettiest coat, but it would protect the steel from water.

Here it is totally bare, after using some bike-specific tools. I laid out all the parts in a rough formation of how they mount on the bike with respect to one another, creating an invisible bike, of sorts.

As you can see, the euphemism for this frame would be "paint-ready."

After sanding, I hit it with some stripper-in-a-can (no, not that kind) and laid down some primer. By this time, I had to head off to my new favorite waffle-and-coffee place for a hot date, and left it to dry. Final paint will have to wait until the weather clears up, as Eugene is back to its gray, moist self after yesterday's gloriously UV-saturated day. Wait 'till you see the colors he picked.

split decision

I rode out to the end of the Fern Ridge Path at dawn yesterday. Whenever some friends want to go for a casual ride and we have about an hour, that's the usual route. This time, I went it alone. I enjoyed riding at my own pace, but what's more, I needed the meditative headspace a solo ride affords.

I thought about how, for the past few weeks, many posts had gone unwritten because I was worried the content was too personal or too newsy. How, for a long time, this blog straddled the divide between being a creative outlet and a clearinghouse for all things bike in Eugene.

At the end of the path, I stopped, thought some more, took pictures of my bike, and realized that what I really need in my life is another blog.

Henceforth, anything that requires the use of first-person narrative will appear here. Information with broader appeal that would benefit from a more distant, professional style will go there. There may potentially be some crossover, but that's the idea.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Mike sent this to me via the facebook. It's a concise, even-handed argument for the Oregon bill proposing cyclists need only yield at stop signs. Fun animations, and a cute little guitar soundtrack, too. Oh, and check out the cyclist's sweet chainless drive system.

By the way, the City of Eugene's official stance on this bill is "neutral." How does that make you feel? And does your legislator know how you feel about all this?

Sunday, April 12, 2009

A trip to the mall.

I rode to Valley River Center yesterday. My friend was shocked that, coming from Midtown/College Hill, it's actually faster than driving.

The bike racks were encouragingly full, but parking was fast and easy.