Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Ready, set, Wednesday!

Admittedly I haven't been following the Touring of France very closely, but I got very excited when I saw there had been a slapping incident--until I saw footage of said slapping:
Oh please.  That's a slap like Michelob Ultra is a beer.  In fact, between this and the outrage over Fabio Aru not waiting for Chris Froome, it's tempting to say cycling's getting too soft.

Wait!  Are we critiquing Tour de France riders for being too soft?!?

Cue an outraged old guy in five...four...three...

(Greg LeMond demonstrating the purported size of his testicles.)

"If the race is on, it does not matter what happens to the yellow jersey, he's got a team and that's what a team is for," added the American, who won the Tour in 1986, 1989 and 1990.

...

"The riders have lost their ability to race," said LeMond.

And with that, LeMond took a bong rip the size of a team bus:


Of course, if you really want context for the Tour de France, you've got to dig deep into the race's history.  Here's a New York Times article on the race from 1926:


[PDF]

28 Days!  And check out who was racing:

Many internationally known cyclists will compete in this event, the twentieth of its kind—last year’s champion, Bottesvia from Itall, Belgian’s Buysse brothers, Huysse, Beniot, Frantz, the Frenchmen Bellenger, Aymot, Huot, Sellier and many others, including Swiss, Hollanders, &c.

In those days they left off the first name for weight savings.

Of course, the basic idea was the same, but the wardrobe was a slightly different:

The man with the least number of accumulated hours will wear the coveted yellow sweater which often changes hands during the circuit.  

I couldn't help plugging the delightful phrase "coveted yellow sweater" into a popular search engine, and here's what I came up with:


(Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's sweater.)

But perhaps the best thing about the old-timey Tour was that amateur Freds could jump in too:

The professional cyclists operate in squads representing various bicycle manufacturing firms and lend each other a hand in case of punctures.  The amateurs operate alone, and while they cannot expect to win, they have a lively competition with each other for amateur prizes.  All along the route towns and villages offer prizes for spurts, &c., and the native sons always get a wild reception, whatever their standings in the race may be.

It's true, the native son always did get a wild reception, but once he arrived in the next town and was no longer the native son he was beaten mercilessly about the head and torso with a stale baguette.

In other news, I received a press release by email yesterday, and imagine my surprise when it was 50% about me:


As the NYC Bike Snob, the snarky and elusive Weiss became a guide for cyclists all over the world, with posts ranging from bike part information to bike lane etiquette -- never afraid of criticizing the big names in the competitive sport. 

The above paragraph continues thusly:

"Interest in the Bike Snob eventually faded until Outside found him behind a taqueria scrounging for discarded burrito stubs.  Taking mercy on him, they engaged him as a columnist ."

Anyway, being a "top influencer, " you can imagine I get lots of great marketing emails, such as this one:

Breaking the wind with Wood...Aerowood

Never one to resist a fart pun, I read on:

In today's carbon rich bicycle environment, it’s difficult to stand out from the crowd and introduce something truly unique and different. The new Renovo Aerowood is a genuine head turner and a great conversation piece.  Please share this with your followers and if interested, please ask about Review Bikes that are readily available.

Wait a second:



Did they say review bikes are available?!?

I may have to try one of these things:


The new Aerowood combines wood with carbon to produce Renovo’s FFSVD© (full frame shock and vibration damping) engineering technology which creates an incredibly fast and smooth ride. In addition, the hollow wood frame is a unique departure from mainstream bicycles that Renovo has found to absorb vibration better than other frame materials and has been expertly engineering since 2007.  Completing the package the Aerowood sports a shrouded rear wheel, aero downtube and seat mast fairing to reduce wind resistance.

Not only will that give me at least two weeks' worth of wood puns, but I'll finally have an appropriate bike for my $45 wooden bidon:


Not to mention my wooden combination bottle opener/tire lever:


Not only is the shape highly ergonomic, but if you're using a tubeless system it can also be used as a sealant injector.

Best of all, I understand Best Made Co. has a travel bike conversion kit available specifically for wooden frames.  It consists of one of their axes:


And a set of hose clamps:


They're like S&S couplers, only more artisanal.

Still, being a top influencer comes with a lot of pressure.  For example, I'm woefully behind on all the different road bike categories, and I need to get caught up.  To that end, I recently browsed the VeloNews Buyers' Guide, where I was stunned to find that ther eare now "All-Around Road" bikes:


And "Aero Road" bikes:




And "Endurance Road" bikes:



And of course "Gravel" bikes;


Even more confusingly, the top Aero road bike was a track bike:


And in case you're wondering, the last place Gravel bike was a Cannondale Slate:


Cannondale’s Tim Johnson calls the Slate “the Swiss Army Knife of road bikes.” Do you really want to dress a deer with a folding knife? Isn’t that can-opener a nuisance? That’s not to say the Slate isn’t a fun, versatile bike. It just seems like a complicated design that tries to do too much for a very specific person. But maybe you’re that person.

Oh snap.

Anyway, I don't know much, but it seems to me that maybe one day they can come up with a bike that's just kind of a regular road bike you can use to do pretty much anything:


Nah, it'll never catch on.

53 comments:

wishiwasmerckx said...

First!

Old Timer said...

Huh? What?

Victor Kaminski said...

vsk said ...

Podio !!


vsk

sTONEdEADLAND said...

Spurt!

Rosy Ruiz said...

I took the bus.

cdinvb said...

My wife has a tire lever very much like that.

ken e. said...

don't know where this is going... but i have suspicions.

Getting It Off said...

That tire lever would be easy on the rim.

Unknown said...

Top 10! And read it!

Grump said...

Gravel bikes may be the new "Hip" thing to own, but I'm waiting for someone to come out with a Gravel TT bike, or a Gravel Pursuit Track bike.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Grump,

We're almost there.

--Wildcat Rock Machine

BamaPhred said...

The best thing about the Aerowood is that you could use it for fuel for a warming fire after a cold winter day ride. I don't know how well crabon fibre burns, anyone try?

N/A said...

I want to fire up some Wednesday Weeds with Lemond and ride around on old Schwinns making fun of these candy-asses that they got riding around the Turdy Fronce. That would totally kick ass.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Scranus.

Anonymous said...

As long as your bike can fit 28 mm paselas, you're good to go.

Chazu said...

Today's entry reminded me of Richard Virenque (ree-SHARD ver-UNK). I'm not sure if it was the reference to the lady-like slapping, or the reference to male genitalia. In any case, he was a doper, too.

Dooth said...

They didn't call him Greg LeBong for nothing...

Very Slim Pickens said...

"Not to mention my wooden combination bottle opener/tire lever:"

Looks like it's been gnawed on by a beaver for quite a while.

Bikeboy said...

As a subscriber to Outside, I can hardly wait to see if the influential Snob contributions lean more snarky, or more elusive.

wishiwasmerckx said...

I thought that orgasms were the "prizes for spurts."

leroy said...

Dear Mr. BSNYC --

I don't mean to brag, but my dog is currently representing me in high level negotiations to voluntarily pre-ride a certain NYC century bike event to check part of its course for hazards.

If you're interested, he says he can probably get you invited to see how an Aerowood handles outer-borough potholes.

Hee Haw the barista said...

WOOD SPRT

Richard Hell said...

Love comes in spurts

Drock said...

Cock opener

Spokey said...


maybe i've been riding in too much heat, but i'm enjoying watching this TdF.

prey to the almighty lob for me sole.

Bike Humble said...

The peloton riding at 60 kph. That's 37mph. Think about that for a minute. I don't care if they're doped. Watching them fly is thrilling. The Tour de France is a fantastic display of cycling. And those climbs! Mountains, ok, mountains!

Anonymous said...

As a leading influencer in the bicycle space going forward, perhaps you could share with us your learnings about why that rather alluring looking Milwaukee is the "kind of a regular road bike you can use to do pretty much anything"?

At the risk of getting a little too esoteric here, the bar tape doesn't seem spongy enough for riding through that goblin infested region in which you've photographed it — you'd be gripping the bars harder for longer than normal causing fatigue compromising one's later onanistic activities.

And it's hard to tell how wide those bars are, but they've got what looks like a pretty deep drop — wouldn't something more compact make for a better All-Arounder?

Spoke count looks a bit low for the most rigorous applications...?

That discreetly radical chainring arrangement looks like a clever "workaround" the limitations of road bikes' gear ratios, but perhaps a triple chainring would be a happy enhancement?

I'm not a pedal-bigot, but a "kind of a regular road bike you can use to do pretty much anything" should have pedals with a flat on at least one side.

I think I can see eyelets for mudguards — that's good — but it'd be an even better All-Arounder if it had provision for a rack, front and back.

Finally, what's happening with your chain in that photo? It looks like it's slipped of the lower jockey wheel and/or has a frightful kink in it!

Anonymous said...

What about morning wood?

And speaking of wood, isn't that just nature's carbon fiber?

Joe Average said...

Anon @ 8:01.
Looks like a pretty good all around bike to me. I guess if it were yours you could tweak a few things, but it's not so learn to live with it.

N/A said...

Spongy bar tape sucks. Causes you to grip too hard.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Anonymous 8:01pm,

You are a terminal weenie and you need help but I'm going to indulge you anyway:

At the risk of getting a little too esoteric here, the bar tape doesn't seem spongy enough for riding through that goblin infested region in which you've photographed it — you'd be gripping the bars harder for longer than normal causing fatigue compromising one's later onanistic activities.

Are you really saying the bar tape you can barely make out in the photo isn't right for the terrain you've never ridden on?

And it's hard to tell how wide those bars are, but they've got what looks like a pretty deep drop — wouldn't something more compact make for a better All-Arounder?

No.

Spoke count looks a bit low for the most rigorous applications...?

I'm one of those Rockefellers who owns more than one pair of wheels, and quick-release technology makes it possible to change them quickly. (Though those wheels hold up fine.)

That discreetly radical chainring arrangement looks like a clever "workaround" the limitations of road bikes' gear ratios, but perhaps a triple chainring would be a happy enhancement?

No.

I'm not a pedal-bigot, but a "kind of a regular road bike you can use to do pretty much anything" should have pedals with a flat on at least one side.

Like wheels, pedals can be changed very easily thanks to pedal wrench technology.

I think I can see eyelets for mudguards — that's good — but it'd be an even better All-Arounder if it had provision for a rack, front and back.

When you order your very own Milwaukee go ahead and add rack mounts, they are available.

Finally, what's happening with your chain in that photo? It looks like it's slipped of the lower jockey wheel and/or has a frightful kink in it!

Yeah, that's part of the derailleur there, Einstein.


--Wildcat Rock Machine

tubasti said...

Gravel, schmavel. The bike I did my best gravel riding on was a steel Gios with 26mm Clement Paris-Roubaix tubulars, a Cinelli 63 handlebar (medium drop), and a 13-21 freewheel.

tubasti said...

Wildcat, I like your Milwaukee, too. The Pro 7S round bend is the best handlebar made since the Cinelli 63 and 66.

8carlisle said...

wood. nature's natural carbon. i like that, and helps to remove co2 from the atmosphere. should be getting carbon credits for that.

Steve Barner said...

The bars are fine, with extra points for roundness, but that amount of drop from the saddle is a sign of untreated fredness that should earn a derisive sneer from Grant, and he's a sponsor! As a SEBB, you should have had plenty of time to have replaced the brand name on those rims with something more interesting, like "Leroy's dog," the names of your many brats, or some decades-dead racer. The biggest issue, though, is the lack of bottles in those cages. From previous writings it is obvious that you are over a mile from home. Let us hope that this does not signify a disturbing disregard for adequate hydration, but rather that you had removed your S'well bidons before setting up the shot and were enjoying some fartisinal beverage, after stirring it with your tire lever.
Like Tubasti, I rode 10 miles of gravel yesterday on 23 mm sewups and it was sweet. With the long, 17% climb, I ran a 42x23 for a bottom gear and from the looks of things, it's put me in better shape than that young punk LeMond, No joke.

dop said...

Influencer is an interesting term. Have we been influenced? Well, my bikes now have a tendency to sport fenders, and I'm rocking 28s on my fredsled. An idle comment on this blog about those non-cyclists who can go out and run bugged the hell out of me, so I now run 2x a week. (it sucks ass)

Who knows what spongy bartape we'd run if it showed up in the righthand margin.

tim joe comstock said...

Dear Wild Crack Rock Machine,

Do you ever wake up in the middle of the night and wonder how it would be if you ever had to get a real job? Trust me, it is dreadful. But fear not...I just laughed out loud 2.5 times reading this post.

N/A said...

Best Made Extra Spongy Bartape is now available in their NY retail space. They will be offering a collection of colorways that are evocative of the greatest races and styles of bicycling's storied history. Vibrant Blue, Punchy Red, and Grueling Black. Wooly Yellow can be special ordered. Sorry, Winsome White sold out in the crowdfunding stage.
Pricing is $96 per 24" roll. They are sold individually, should you choose to curate a multi-hued presence on your handlebars. Every Tuesday evening at 7 PM, a cooperative workshop will be held to inform those who may wish to wrap their own bars rather than avail themselves of Best Made's art-is-anal wrapping services. Bring your own craft beers and axes.

boys on the hoods said...

Steve Barner @ 6:24. Sure but #whatpressureyourunning?

BamaPhred said...

What's wrong with padded spongy bar tape?

William Jefferson Clinton said...

It depends on how you define, "spongy".

JLRB said...

The price tags on those bikecycles are shocking - $5k for a cheap one. I know the price of bikes, but seeing them all together like just makes me laugh - now that I gave a few away to charity I currently have 8 bikes (yes I have a problem) - I think the total cost of the 8 is less than the higher priced bikes listed in that shit show. And I have some really nice, extremely functional bikes, some of the titanium dentist variety with some higher end of the range components.

N/A said...

I have recently become the caretaker of 2 Bruce Gordon frames in the "old" ageway. The gentleman I bought them from gave me a pretty great deal, and even if I go totally nuts I will still be able to more-than-adequately build both of them up for much less than $5k. One's a roadie frame and one is a touring. Either one will handle "mixed terrain" and I can get a 28mm tire in that road frame I think.


If I thought that I couldn't get a nice bike for less than $5k, I'd just say "fuck it" and buy a(nother) Hyundai.

Époisses de Bourgogne said...

"Slap"

More like Pepe le Pew waved his tail at him.

Via la France - home of the Freedom Fry!

Joe said...

The wooden bike has a fairing, so it's not UCI legal, correct? Pass.

Anonymous said...

My all arounder has disc brakes. get some dog. Also, steel is heavy and slow, at least spring for some titanium bro.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Anonymous 1:47pm,

I'll get the disc brakes, but I refuse to get some dog.

--Wildcat Etc.

BamaPhred said...

This talk of $5k plus for a cheap bike. Pffffft! You can vibe hella on a fine bike from any of Snob's purveyors for a lot less than $5k.

Dooth said...

Steel is heavy and slow? Of course, it's heavier than carbon. My lugged Reynolds 531 steel bike weighs about 25 pounds with saddle bag, air pump, water bottle and I weigh 145 pounds at 6 ft tall. That's 170 pounds for my 54 years old heart and lungs to push. Checking my data from my last ride: 31.53 miles done in 3:04:29. And I stop at red lights and crawl to stop signs. And average speed of 10:26 mph for 31 and a half miles with hills. Would a 15 pound carbon bike would add an extra mile per hour? Probably. But not worth the $9,000.00. Now, if I were 30 years younger...

Anonymous said...

50

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Anonymous said...

The Renovos are dangerous--at least the mountain bikes and gravel bikes are (hilariously named "FatAsh" and less-funny "John Day").

I know of at least two people who tried them at Interbike Outdoor Demo and catastrophically broke them down to razor sharp splinters--carbon inner or not. Avoid.