Sunday, December 24, 2006

Wii Need Bicycles

Well here we are on Christmas Eve. Just about all of our Christmas layaways have been picked up and a few last minute shoppers are purchasing their final presents. An interesting thing happened this year. Both Nintendo and Sony sold out of their hit new gaming systems. This is worth mentioning because frantic parents are coming into Ye Old Bike Shop in search of a “second choice” gift. Many of them were a little uncomfortable with spending more than $70 on a bicycle for their child. The value of a quality bicycle is something that I have explained on a daily basis for over a decade. It seems to me however in a nation of obesity, the bicycle may be exactly what “junior” needs. I will make it a goal for 2007 to make children want and ask for a shiny new bicycle in lieu of the latest game console this time next year. Until then, may you all have a very Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 22, 2006

Gambrill Graveyard Shift 12/20/06

This past episode of the Gambrill Graveyard Shift yielded lots of rocky fun. 17 riders joined in the off-road trek and 7 of us went to the brew pub following the ride for pizza and drinks. Ride leader Joe was home sick so his presence was missed. The group stayed together and we were fortunate enough to have no flat tires and only a few minor spills. The weather cooperated once again making a great ride even better. Thanks to all who joined in the fun. See you next time!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Bike Fun Run


There is something about riding a cheap bicycle in jeans and tennis shoes that I find extremely nostalgic. Last night Mike and I meet up with four other friends and pedaled a short distance to a local pub for a beer and chili tasting. We had a great little ride and pleasant conversation. Mike and I rode the "Shop Bike" and the "Shop Single Speed" (name not yet determined). In the future The Bicycle Escape will be hosting Fun Rides to local destinations. The rides will be Lycra-free and a lot of fun. Stay tuned for details!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

2007 XTR Crank Bash Guard

2007 XTR Crank Bash Guard

We received the much anticipated 2007 XTR crank set today. Many of my riding partners have been asking if it will accommodate a bash guard. From the pictures I have seen I said “yes” but I gave Shimano a call to be sure. All I could get out of Shimano was “well it’s not a freeride crank why don’t you spec a Saint…” So I decided to find out for myself. Well I am happy to report you can run the 2007 Shimano XTR crank with a bash guard. I should note that the first bash guard I attempted to install was by Dangerboy and that guard did not fit. However, with a few passes with a file (on the guard not the crank) the Dangerboy product could be encouraged to fit just fine. Now all you have to do is find a good home for the $180 chainring you just took off ;)

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Planning Commission Meetings...Everyone Should Attend at Least 1 in Their Life!

Last night (December 11, 2006) I (taking the picture) along with Tom (arrived after I took the picture), Mike (guy on the left in the picture) and his wife, Hayley (too hungry to be in the picture) joined a group of Frederick Pedalers in support of a proposed bicycle route connecting MD144 to the east with MD40 to the west. We all attended the planning commission meeting at City Hall at 6 p.m. to express our desire to see this route come to life..............................................

........................................3.5 hours later, after losing half of our cycling mob, the hardcorest of hardcore supporters got the chance to speak out in favor of this bike route proposed by SHA a few years ago.

Fortunately our hours of sitting patiently through discussions on how high people's hedges should be and how it is possible for residents to have 1.5 parking spaces each, the committee agreed to vote again (a few years ago they voted no) in January to possibly move forward with the bike route.

This is a great opportunity for experienced cyclists who ride through the city for commuting, enjoyment or both.

In January The Bicycle Escape will be back at City Hall to show our support again...No matter how long the meeting runs!

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Super Sexy Spanish Splendor

In my 10+ years in the bicycle biz I have been privileged enough to assemble and work on some incredibly high-end bicycles. Many of these bikes are as beautiful as they are functional. Recently we received the newly revised Spanish-brand Orbea Orca and never in my life have a seen a sexier bike frame. I mean it! Not cool, pretty, beautiful or neat but downright sexy! My heart raced as I removed the bubble wrap. Each piece of wrapping came off easier than the next to revile a curvaceous carbon fiber chassis of which I have seen no equal. She had the curves of Penelope Cruz and the class of Ines Sastre. Anyway, I had to share this beauty with you all. Note the headbadge/cable stops- very slick!

Friday, December 08, 2006

Gambrill Night Ride

After several months of coordination and planning, everything finally came together on December 6th for The Bicycle Escape and MORE to hold the first of many night time mountain bike rides at Gambrill State Park in Frederick Maryland.

Considering we are getting well into December the temps were surprisingly mild, hovering around the lower 40's for our 7pm departure. Waivers were signed, parking passes were handed out and Joe, who was kind enough to lead the first ride gave everyone a quick brief on the intended route and what to expect along the way. From the lower parking lot we headed up the yellow trail towards the overlook. Anyone who has ridden this trail before knows that this climb can be a pain due to the lack of any time to warm up the legs and lungs. My job on this ride was to bring up the rear and make sure no one got separated from the group. About halfway up the climb, I ran into a small log-jam of riders. As everyone sorted out I noticed Joe was left behind fiddling around with a jumped chain. That was the first of a few mechanicals.

After regrouping at the top of the climb, we headed for some of the nice singletrack that parallels Gambrill Park Road. Although I didn't witness it with my own eyes I heard reports of Joe doing a superman on one of the gnarlier rock downhills, followed up by Kevin going down as well. No casualties were suffered except for a fresh scratch on Kevin's new IF. Shortly after that, Mehdi grinds to a halt with his light pointing straight down towards the ground. He lost the rubber shim that keeps the light clamp tight on the bar so we jammed a few sticks in the mount, tightened it up and continued on. Meanwhile, the rest of the group got a pretty good flow going.

After a good bit of uninterrupted riding the group came to a halt once again when one of the riders flatted. The flat was fixed and no more than 500 yards down the trail, someones light went black.(sorry I don't remember every ones name) Fortunately, Tom just happened to bring along an extra Light & Motion Arc HID so he hooked it up and we were on our way once again. A way down the trail I came upon Joe, fiddling with his chain once again. After a quick inspection it was discovered that he had a bent chainring. With a small adjustable wrench Joe tweaked the chainring enough to finish up the ride.

After ride festivities were held at Brewers Alley in downtown Frederick. I myself gave the Oatmeal Stout and Cask IPA a try. For my taste the Oatmeal Stout was a little bland but the Cask IPA was excellent packing a nice aroma and flavor. I'm really glad we were able to get these rides going and I can't wait until the 20th to do it again.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Pedal Prohibition

Recently some of our new bicycles came with pedals flaunting an important message that reads: Warning: This pedal is prohibition to be used on the spinning and exerciser bike. Judging by their use of all capital letters as well as the ominous presence of the triangle-enclosed exclamation point it is obvious that the manufactures mean business! We felt obligated to bring this caution to the attention of our readers. I know some of you may be tempted to remove your stock flat pedals and install them on the spinning and/or exerciser bike but please do not. While I don't know exactly what will happen if you throw caution to the wind and try it but you can bet the results will be tragic!

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Sunday's Bicycle Commute

Well begrudgingly we are now open on Sunday’s through the month of December. Since I have sacrificed my only day off I decided to commute to work by bicycle. The ride dulled the pain of working all day for the "tyrant." As I pedaled I was reminded of two things: One- I am out of shape and Two- I love bicycle commuting. I find that riding clears my head and I am able to come up with great ideas... nothing of immense value but I did come up with a few good novelty T-shirt slogans.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Bikes and Cars in Harmony

Thanks to a friendly person on the MORE forum I learned of a cool invention in Europe. General Motors is incorporating an integrated bicycle rack into some of their vehicles. This idea is way over due and hopefully it will hop the pond sometime soon! Speaking of MORE if your are not yet a member sign up today! It only costs $20 to help support our beautiful trails!