Seaotter 2016 recap part 1

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Well the seaotter has come and gone, this has become one of my favorite weekends of the year. I was camping out at Laguna Seca with my buddy Noah and a few other dudes that have been coming up year after year also. This being my fourth year i knew exactly what to expect, this year was a little different i had a bit more spending money in my pocket due to the chain reaction/ bicycle times contest that i won and received a weekend festival pass and entry fee which i used for the 20 mile MTB tour ride.

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I had a blast riding with my buddy Noah even though i held him back on most of the climbs. W ended up splitting up after a long technical climb which he zipped right up. The ride was pretty fun it was a little bottlenecked at a few points in the beginning then the riders spread out. Their was a total of 3000′ of climbing over 20 miles and most of it single track technical climbs. Their was a nice rest stop/refueling station at about mile 11. I tend to cram up quite a bit but i was taking s-caps electrolyte pills every 30-40 min which actually worked great.

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I finished the ride in just over 3 hours which was about middle of the pack, i did have to get off and walk a few times but i want alone. All in all it was a fun ride and id probably do it again. this was the first time i rode with a buddy the 2 times I did the grand fondo i rode solo, it was a great ride can’t wait till next year

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Now to the good stuff! There was so much cool stuff this year i didn’t know where to start. So heres a chris king 40th anniversary santa cruz 5010, limited to only 40 bikes this had a custom chris king headset bottom bracket and hub set in a limited color, if you got an extra  $9k this bike can have a spot in your garage.

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Keeping with the Santa Cruz theme this 1×11 Stigmata, shown here with color matching Slica frame and floor pump was a bargain at $6500. I was drooling over it the entire weekend…

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One of the most versatile bikes Santa Cruz introduced a new model this year the High tower, capable of running either 29″ or 27.5+” wheels you can pretty much have two bike all you have to do is buy another set of rims, At $7700 you can justify it by making the argument that its technically 2 bikes, (cyclist logic)

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Adventure/ gravel bikes were all the rage this year hers one that really caught my eye. The raleigh Stuntman is a tribute to the The 80’s tv show the Fall Guy. Starring Lee Majors as Colt Severs. This bike is the same color as his his 82′ GMC. With huge 29×2.1 meats this bike is built to shred, add a dropper post disc brakes and all the rack mount points you can think of and this bike is ready out of the box to do some damage.

Kona always come to party and this year was no different, i stopped by their tent to see what they had brought with them and low and behold kona had a couple carbon bikes with them. Known for aluminum and titanium and steel this is a big deal for them. Not only were they speced nice they also had a nice price tag a well. Per usually i had to take a shot of tequila and have a beer with them and talk bikes, they really now how to threaten me with a good time. The one bike that kinda stole the show was their steel road/cross like with exposed fillet brasing it looked rather nice.

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I was pretty excited to see this bike in person , this is the open cycles UP (unbeaten path) with the option of running a 700×40 cx tire a 700×28 road tire or a 650×2.1 mtb tire this bike can go pretty much anywhere. They say the amount of bikes a cyclist wants is N+1, N being the amount you have and always wanting another, well i think open cycles may have just solved that equation or at least shortened it. If you have a chance to demo this bike In person don’t bring you wallet because you won’t leave with out it.

Ill be posting a few more of these seaotter recaps in the next couple weeks, for a 4 day event they pack a bunch of stuff in to it, f you have never been or never heard of it you should defiantly put it on your to do list

 

Cav’s Cervelo S5…

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Looks like Cav is adjusting well to his new ride taking the over all win at the Tour of Qatar and only missing out on the final sprint victory by millimeters. He’s riding all new gear down to the saddle and it looks like it agrees with him. Those gigantic enve wheels are doing just that making me envy them. Doesn’t look like its slowing him down any. Cav also switched from shimano to speedplay  which it a huge change in its self, when i made the switch to speedpaly their was defiantly a learning curve, shimano is a toe first then heel down engagement while speedplay are a straight down motion if you try and go toe first the cleat won’t engage.

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12 February 2016 15th Tour of Qatar Stage 05 : Sealine Beach Resort – Doha Corniche 1st : KRISTOFF Alexander (NOR) Katusha, Leader of the Points Classification 2nd : CAVENDISH Mark (GBR) Dimension Data Photo : Yuzuru SUNADA

But the question is which bike looks better? specialized venge or cervelo s5? Sound off in the comment section which you prefer!

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Mark Cavendish's Specialized S-Works Venge

100 followers!

wow thank you all so much, i have some cool stuff in store for the upcoming weeks, a lot of product reviews and some interviews as well. I’m stoked to be back and firing n all cylinders!

Thank you all again~FBTC

heres a few pics from seaotter to hold you over till my next post

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Seaotter 25th anniversary recap part 1


It’s that time of year again, the seaotter took place last weekend up in Monterey for the 25th time. This year was the biggest yet with over 400 venders and over 1500 athletes and 6500 people camping this is the biggest cycling event on the west coast. The seaotter is one of my favorite events I go to each year and this year was no different, having upgraded from campsite H, pretty much a dirt lot with porta-potties to the deluxe campsite C which had full hookups for an rv along with nice showers and bathrooms which was greatly appreciated.
The venders pit area is where I usually start. A lot of my favorite bike company’s are displaying their new products, SRAM alone was debuting 2 new drivetrains, the affordable Gx 1×11 and the GR 1×11 road gravel adventure group, along with the new zipp aluminum disc wheel set that is marketed as a do it all wheel set they describe it as Tubeless-ready. Wide rim. The 30 Course Disc-brake is ready for everything.

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  • The absense of a left shifter is pretty apparente but it will surly grow on you.


SRAM also debuted their new affordable 1×11 and 2×11 mtb group the GX, said to be available for sale next month and shipping on 2016 bikes, this will be a game changer for SRAM at a price point of around $550 this will surly be a big hit

  

  

I’m not quite sold on the reverse rs-1 but if weight saving is what you’re into this one piece carbon steer tube and race crown might be worth looking in to, for me I’ll be sticking with a traditional fork


Shimano couldn’t let SRAM have all the fun, they also debuted at seaotter their new 1×11 deore xt which was turning heads, this could give SRAM’s Gx a run for their money

    

To keep all those new parts and wheels safe kryptonite had a cool new version of their classic messenger u lock with and integrated shackle for the front wheel along with locking rear axle, this is definitely on my wish list this year


Stopping by one of my favorite booths chris king had some of their r-45 hubs with cutaways to see the internal workings, i built a set of wheels with these hubs and can’t wait to put some miles on them. Chris king offers custom in house wheel building along with their hand made cielo road cross and race frames you can now build a whole bike using mostly chris king parts


        

I have a lot to share with you guys so keep your eyes peeled for part 2 of my seaotter recap along with reviews for esi’a new race grip and a cool new product designed to help climbing for mtb, and I’ll be putting some photochrmatic glasses to the test, so look for those reviews in the upcoming weeks

Back from the dead! 

So I’ve been a little quiet lately, I took most of the fall and up until a few weeks ago I was in school doing my pre-reqs for nursing school, I already have a vocational nursing license so becoming an RN would be about another year or so of schooling.

So what have a been up to you ask?!? Well I’ve still been on my bike and got to participate in a few cool events this past few months. In November I got to ride side by side with Tour de France 4th place finisher Christian Vande Velde and team BMC rider Peter Stetina who finished 6th in the tour of California whic had a finishing stage 10min from my house!!!

Ian very fortunate to live in such a great area for cycling! Last weekend in Paso Robles ca, about 20 min from me, was the first l’eroica held in the United States there were about 100 pre 1987 bikes one of the oldest ones being from 1898 it had a giant 62 tooth front ring and wood rims, along with all the amazing bikes on display they also had a vintage ride of 30, 60 and 120 miles, the 120 miles course had almost 10k feet of climbing!!! That is way to much and with vintage 5/6 speed cassettes.

        

Along with all the fun I’ve been having on the road I also was fortunate enough to get a 2014 giant trance sx at a great price just in time for the seaotter that starts this tursday! I’ll be there checking out all the booths along with some sweet races! This is defiantly one of the highlights of my year! if any one plans on going I’ll be camping all weekend and your more than welcome to come by the camp site for a beer! Unfortunately I won’t be riding in the fondo this year due to a knee injury I got snowboarding back in early feb. the knee is doing better but I have only put about 25 miles on it at a time and I’m in sure how it would fare the full 55 of the coastal fondo at the seaotter.

So keep an eye out for more frequent updates to come along with more product reviews on their way!

cinelli hobo

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So I’ve been kicking around the idea of building a touring bike for sometime now, i was pretty much all sold on the surly long haul trucker until i saw the cinelli hobo when i was down in santa barbra at crankys bikes on state street, they are the only cinelli retailer between LA and SF, and living in san luis obispo half way between the 2 taking a day trip to check out this bike was well worth it.

 

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Cinelli came out guns a balzin’ on this one, you really get a lot of bike for the buck! The hobo come stock with tubes front and rear cargo racks as well as front and rear fender and wellgo platform/spd pedalsWhich means that this thing is ready to go out of the box! Just slap on which ever panniers (chrome industries make some cool ones) and some lights and your ready to hit the road and at a price of around $1549 its basically a steal!!

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For that price you not only get the legendary cinelli name you also get a Columbus steel frame, the surly LHT uses 4130 chromoly which is a great material but nothing beats Columbus steel tubes in my opinion.

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Cinelli really hit the nail on the head with this bike, they paid great attention to details with the spoke chainstay protector to the moleskin hobo journal with embossed logo and hobo symbols on it. With a mix of shimano deore and tiagra parts this is a stout build. weighing in at just under 30lbs its a bit of a beast but if your concerned that much about weight touring is not really for you.

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There isn’t much i would do to this bike if i was setting it up for a touring excursion with the exception of adding a brooks B17 or cambium saddle to grind out those miles on. cinelli in my opinion really out did their selves one this one, i have been on a mission for a while to own a cinelli frame and touring bike for some time and this meets both requirements, this will be my next bike purchase for sure, i was hoping to build a bike from the frame up but why mess with perfection this bike is awesome! good news for 2015 the hobo remains unchanged, so go out and pick one up today!!!  click the link to check out the new hobo (cinellibikes)

New product, Nutlock!!!!!

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It been a while since i posted, its been hectic with work and life in general. But not hectic enough to post this fantastic piece of bike equipment. I stumbled on to Nutlock via intsagram and i was immediately intrigued. While i have seen other wheel security devices these looked and from what I’ve seen functioned the best. Sleek and durable this product is rad!

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Nutlock was crowed funded by kickstarted and received over $60,000 in funding and is class project for 4 USC students. Nutlock claimes to be theft proof against pliers, pipe wrenches, bolt cutters, screw drivers, “gator grip”, bionic wrenches and grenade launchers. This is in my opinion a simple cheap and effective way to secure you wheels in a urban environment. for 25$ you get one set of nut locks and in key and for $39 you get 2 sets for 2 wheels. installation is easy just screw on to you existing quick release axle and tighten down and you good to go! The key is small enough to keep on your key ring and even comes with a bottle opener! So if you live in a high crime area or just want to protect you investment i highly recommend you check out nutlock

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Seaotter Classic 2014 recap part 2

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I packed up my VW golf and made the trek all 135 miles from san luis obispo to Laguna seca race way in monterey, one quick stop at target in paso robles to get a sleeping bag, because i forgot mine, i was on the road. The Seaotter classic is a 4 day mountain and road event at the laguna seca race track, along with the cat 1-5 racing they also have 2 grand fondo road rides a 50 and 100 mile and a 30 mile mtb fondo. The event also features a vender area with over 350 venders featuring new and prototype products, and a ton of great deals to be had as well!

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With the event being primarily MTB focused most of the venders are showing off the newest and coolest mountain shredders

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Like this santa cruz bronson full carbon 6in travel bike with sram xx1 and enve carbon rims and a price tag of over $10,000 this is a beast of a bike with a price tag to match

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One of the coolest bikes at the show was from Razik with there super innovative “isotruss” technology it literally made me do a double take a build with high quality parts and a nice wheel set came in at around sub 13lbs. they had some guys racing there that weekend showing them off as well

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The rep for Razik had a sample tube to look at and said “throw it on the ground step on it” it was extremely strong and stiff very cool technology from razik

 

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Razik also has plans to release had tail MTB frames and full suspension frames in the next  few months

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I stopped by the Felt tent to see what they had out to look at, Felt had a couple 2015 already on display as well as a cool cruiser in collaboration with the guys from the tv show american pickers. Felt also had a shimano hydraulic disc build to check out along with new ar and F models. And  really cool new cx bike too, i really like felt and miss my old f75

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Stopping by the Kona bikes tent some one forgot to tell them that 2014 is the year of carbon, but they brought titanium instead and thats ok with me! Kona only brought TI bikes to seaotter with them this year and tequila!!! The first time i passed by the kona tent i was “forced” to have a shot of el jimador and i was totally cool with that in fact pretty much every time i passed the kona booth i received a shot of tequila. Those guys love bikes and love tequila straight out of bellingham wa, Kona bikes is the real deal!!!

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Stopping by the seasucker booth i spotted a new member in their line up, still a prototype seasucker calls it the scorpion and rightly so! it looks just like one! Not only will it function as a trunk style rack for convertibles it is also went for use as a work stand on the the car! Very cool idea from them, I’ve been using the mini bomber for over a year and a half and i love it, dp your self a favor and check out seasucker and their awesome products!

I have much more seaotter coverage plus some product review from seaotter so look for those on the not to distant future!

 

 

Till next year seaotter… 2014 recap part 1

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Well the years Seaotter classic is in the bag, but boy was it a hoot! Tons of good riding mtb and road! Ill be doing multiple posts bout the cool stuff i checked out this year but this one is about about me. On Sat i took part for the second year in a row in the half fondo a 50 mile out and back mostly coastal ride along the picturesque monterey peninsula, while having not have a lot of time in the saddle the past 6 months i faired pretty well due to the fact that there was a 2000ft climb at the last 2.5 miles of the ride. the ride was a fully supported with fulling stations and mechanics if you needed a quick tune, the weather was a little chilly in the morning being overcast and in the mid 50’s but as soon as i hit a couple climbs i got my blood flowing and a sweat going. This was the longest ride on my scott addict it rode well and climbed like a goat, me on the other hand….

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On your marks get set go!!! The century riders were up first to the starting line, 96.4 miles through the carmel valley

 

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Strava kept my ride time perfect and even running pandora i still had 30% battery left

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25 miles down and 25 miles to go the aid station was great fully stocked with cliff barf and gels and osmos electrolyte drinks along with bananas and other carb rich delights.

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wish i could of snapped more pics but the was a one i managed to get on a quick break whiled checking my drive train, great weather and awesome riding conditions

company spotlight fairdale bikes part 2

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Part 2 in my Fairdale bikes spotlight will focus on their current line up. Fairdale has a current roster of 10 models,some of which are women’s versions, of complete bikes and 4 frame sets.

 

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Their flagship model pictured above it the flyer a single speed split top tube cruzer, the definition of simplicity, fair dale describes the flyer as “It’s a simple bike so there’s nothing to complicate the joy of a nice bike ride. Quality Continental tires, comfy Fairdale seat and Odyssey brakes are some of this bike’s great parts. Just hop on and go… no need to over think this.” and at $459 its a steal, the flyer also come in a  internal 3 speed version for an extra $100 bucks.

 

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The next model fairdale makes is the weekender the being the drop/disc model a 2×9 shimano sora avid bb7 disc brake set up, comes with 37 mm wide continental tires and full chromolly frame, fender and rack mounts makes this a perfect platform for a pretty in expensive touring bike, the weekender retails for $1199. this frame also comes in a version with archer bars and canti brakes for $850 a greal bike for commuting to work or “weekend” getaways

 

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The next bike on their roster is the fairdale coster, the coster is as no nonsense as you can get, they describe it as “You’ll smile if you ride this bike. With the Shimano coaster brake it is a joy to ride. The Fairdale seat and Archer bars somehow add up to make this bike magic. Classic and uncluttered cycling on this bike is a delight!” it has a freaking coaster brake!!! you can do some sweet skid stops like when you were a kid!!!!

 

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Next model up in fairdales line is the parser, billed as there single speed cyclocross style bike its come fixed or with a free hub and with an integrated head set and a chromoly frame make this a great bike for cyclocross. Heres what the guys from fair dale say about itAll butted chromoly frame, integrated headset, Continental tires, Fairdale cranks with a sealed outboard bottom bracket, and TWO cogs on the sealed rear cassette hub. That way you can easily set the bike up for whatever terrain you might come across. Cyclocross style canti-brakes and rack / fender mounts make this a great all around bike” and retailing at $749 its an affordable option for a starter cycloscross bike

 

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next up is the signature series “Taj”, the Taj the a throwback to the 80’s BMX cruiser days, the taj is a 26″ full chromoly beast of a bike. heres what the fairdale guys said about it “It’s all chromoly frame, fork and handlebar were built to last. The Taj’s curb-hopping and wheelie-popping geometry was great for cruising and having fun. The Odyssey parts, Maxxis 26” tires and the sealed chromoly crankset made this one quality package.” with a retail of $599  makes it a perfect sunday funday bike for hit tree root jumps

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Last on the list is the weekender og a combo of the wekender canti/drop disc, its pretty much different bars and levers but same mechanical disc brakes and a single crank set heres what fairdale says about it “The Weekender could be a legitimate replacement for a car, a weekend getaway machine or just a fun bike to ride around. Reliable SRAM powered 1×9 shifting is simple to use, just one thumb shifter takes you through a full range of 9 gears. Front and rear Avid mechanical disc brakes will take care of stopping in any conditions and are easy to maintain. Fender and rack mounts let you customize this bike to be a daily commuter or a light tourer. A high end hubset matched with quality rims and Kevlar belted Continental tires will keep you rolling smoother longer. The Weekender’s frame and fork is built around our double butted chromoly tube set complete with bullet proof integrated headset and a one piece machined steer tube fork. This bike is topped off with Odyssey grips, pedals and comfortable FAIRDALE ARCHER handlebars.” at $849 the weekender is a screaming deal!!! So if you want a really cool steel frame bike from a cool company with a BMX background check out fairdale, they are the real deal when it comes to townies and commuters, steel is real!!!

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