hoff’s bikesmith’s: grand opening party!

living in jackson gives me the privilege of helping out bike savvy organizations like fitzgerald’s bicycles, the no idle tour and most recently: hoff’s bikesmith – the newest bikeshop in town.  and if you are in the area and want to throw down – don’t miss the grand opening!

monday, april 11th noon to late

FREE BEER thanks to PBR!

FREE FOOD thanks to SHADES!

FREE MUSIC thanks to VERT-ONE!

FREE SCHWAG thanks to GIRO & HAMMER!

that’s right, it’s going to be a totally fun and free event! and if you are looking for a TOTALLY RAD TOWN BIKE to cruise on this summer, we’re going to be raffling one off!

be sure to come thirsty, hungry and ready to win some sweet prizes! and of course – don’t forget your dancing shoes.

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winter bike commuting

if you want to lower your winter costs and increase your steeze (style with ease), turn your car in for a bike this winter.  just imagine it, your riding through town square in a snow storm, with howling winds, low temps, a smile on your face and fresh thai take out in one hand.  no big deal right?  that’s because you did your homework and now you kick ass!  if you aren’t winter commuting yet, here’s how you get it done:

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things you’ll need: a bicycle, studded tires, fenders & lights

optional extras: leg band, low light shades, full length cable housing.

frame: the most reasonable bike to set up would be an old, steel, suspension-less mountain bike, but most bikes will work, 26″ or 700c, without a problem – just stay away from proper road bikes.

tires: you’re going to have to set up your rig to handle several types of surface conditions: ice, slush, snow, pavement and any mixture of those.  you need studded tires.   the advantage to a mountain bike studded tire is that it’s more effective with the added surface area.  the road (700c) studded tire is going to be faster which will make it better for the shoulder seasons (when most of the snow and ice is gone).

fenders are a must.   all of the sand, gravel, salt and whatever else makes it onto the roads can be completely blocked from reaching your ass by some good fenders.

lights: since the road conditions are less than spectacular (not that you care) and variable, you need to see the road at night.  this is different than a lot of our summer commuting methods, where you really just want cars to see you.  invest in a light that can help you see the variable conditions, and you will ride safer and faster.

extras: the leg band keeps your pants from getting caught in your drive train – this can be as simple as a rubber band.  low light shades help riding at night and the day – keeping the crisp air from tearing up your eyes before you walk into the bar will help you avoid unneeded conversations.  and if you want your braking and shifting to work great all winter long, take ‘yer steed to your local bike shop to have some full length cable housing installed, this will keep any moisture from sneaking in there and locking your cables up.

and the best part about your fresh new ride is that you don’t have to wait for it to warm up in the morning.

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surly trailers are the cat’s meow

if you’re looking for a bike trailer that can haul some serious weight and stand up to abuse look no further than surly’s bill & ted.

wheel placement – the wheels are centered enough to reduce tongue weight.  this means that you can put a keg on it and your bike won’t take the same abuse your liver is getting ready to.

wedges – placed on either side so that when your friend rides it into a corner of a building the trailer will bounce out rather than throwing you buddy (he deserved it) flying into the cement.

sturdy fenders – this helps keep your cargo from interfering with your wheels.

bomber bicycle mount – could it look any better than that?  fits 20″ to 29″ tires.

conclusion – 100% steel, this thing looks like it was made in the 70’s when things were built to last.  it’s offered in two sizes.  the bill – 63″ x 24″ & the ted – 32″ x 24″.  worth every penny.

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bikewire defined

WHAT THE HELL IS A BIKEWIRE?
watching the evolution of bikewire.org has been fairly fascinating.  so far it has had over 1000 visits since the beta version went live in february, covering 28 states and 27 countries.  here’s the low down:  bikewire.org is a place for bikers, tourers, racers & dirtbags like you and me to create a system of trade routes across the globe (and maybe the galaxy) – on, of course, bicycles.  bikewire is a bicycle deliver network, and it has two sides to it.

POSTS VS. REQUESTS
at first, i simply twisted the arms of my friends to hop on and make a wire.  “you want me to do what?”  “just go to bikewire.org and make a wire.”  it was cool because most people get it once they jump on the site.  then, people i didn’t know started using it, which was great.  however, most people are simply making “wire posts” which means that you want to be a courier.  you can say “i live in the DC area, and would be stoked to move something for you, i have a messenger bag, and i drink beer.”  so the object of attention for bikewire right now is requests.  most people aren’t making requests yet, so here’s some beta for that…

MAKE BIKEWIRE REQUESTS!
start small.  start big.  it doesn’t matter.  think to yourself, “self, what do i need right now?”  if you’re a business owner, this is right up your ally.  make a bikewire request for riders to deliver your pies, “i need a bunch of riders that have pizza carrying abilities to deliver pies in the x region.”


another idea is to set up a bike move.  if your in college you probably move every 12 months.  keep your inner pack rat to a minimum and move your stuff via a bikes with all of your friends: “need help with a bike move next saturday, bring a bike, trailer if you got one and a drinking receptacle for beer.  i’ll provide food and beer – it’s gonna be a party!”


or hell, maybe you live in california and want a letter ridden to your mother who lives in new york.  sounds far fetched?  thousands of people follow the adventure cycling routes everywhere, so if you can piece it together, you could probably find a rider (or riders) to carry something these great lengths.


THE FUTURE
the future of this concept is as extensive as your imagination, and the ideas for the website development are endless.  obviously they take time, and money to create.  these are not hardships that we cannot overcome, but the most important part is YOU.  bikewire needs you, and everyone you know to start making wires.  so get to work!


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Bike-In Movies hit Jackson Hole!

one of the more fun things in life is sipping suds under stars with your neighbors.  bike-in movies rock, which is why fitzgerald’s bicycles is hosting their second annual series this year.  i’m still sure that RAD was the best movie that we’ve seen so far!

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xtracycles

if you haven’t experienced an xtracycle, i highly recommend trying one out.  they ride great, and are uber functional.  it’s always fun after you’re barbecuing with a bunch of folks, and you realize you have run out of beer.  you look around, and no one is really into jumping into their car to get some more booz.  then you realize you have the xtracycle, sweet!  6 cases of PBR – no problem.  or if your friend needs a ride, they can jump on the back.  and lastly, you are not restricted by what you buy at the grocery store like you would be with just a messenger bag.  economy pack of toilet paper?  sure.  tomato and basil starter plants?  let’s go for a ride!

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Costa Rican Bike Culture

costa rica is, for a lot of reasons, awesome.  the fruits are divine.  the people are friendly.  and if you spend most of your time in a land locked state – you are finally able to tear your clothes off and sprint into the ocean.   but one thing that caught my eye was their bike culture.  they would ride on long unpaved roads on clunkers, because, well, that’s apart of their life.  i also saw a lot of vendors that utilized bicycles to move their product – usually coconuts, ice cream or something  cold.   i might need to have my neighbor, tim, weld me one of these cargo contraptions.

and if you didn’t know, bike touring in costa rica can fit the vacation you went there for.

“how far is it to selvin’s?”

“oh, it’s at least 2 or 3 towns over”

however, 30 minutes of riding on a single speed beach cruise will get you there.  oh, and the steeds cost a whopping 5 dollars per day.  perfect.

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