Surly 1×1 Frame for sale…

13 07 2011

Black and white...

I’m selling my Surly 1×1 frame/fork with headset installed for $300.00. I’ve come to the conclusion I need the next size up in frames. The frame is in excellent condition. It’s been stored inside and seen only short distance rides around town. I’m open to selling the whole bike as it’s a pretty slick unit. I get tons of compliments and always end up stopping to chat with folks on every ride. If you are interested in the complete rig drop me a line and we’ll talk price.

Back end...

My review of this bike is here.

My MK2 upgrades are discussed here.

My Flickr photos are here.

Front end...

If you are not familiar with the Surly 1×1 here are some quick facts:

  • steel frame
  • disc and rim brake posts
  • horizontal dropouts for fixed gear/sing speed or IGH use
  • no derailleur hanger
  • makes a great rigid MTB, commuter or expedition touring bike
  • room for fat 26″ x 2.5″+ rubber
  • can run 700C wheels with narrower rubber [28-35mm] and disc brakes
  • very versatile

3 Speed One Way Tikit…

22 02 2011

Want a Bike Friday Tikit that's fixed gear, but have some hills to contend with?

Wished you didn't have to choose?

With the new Sturmey Archer 3 speed fixed IGH you don't have to...

I've tried it and it works like a charm...

With these dropouts you can run a regular IGH or add a derailleur later...

Bike Friday being

These H-bars could be a future upgrade for my Tikit...

I like all the hand positions...

My new favourite Bike Friday Tikit colour…

18 02 2011

Yellow Bike Friday Season Tikit seen during my recent visit...

Of all the Bike Fridays in the showroom this colour jumped out by a mile...

It looks much nicer in person - the day was dreary when I took these photos...

Shimano Nexus 8 IGH - nice fit for the Tikit...

Fenders, v-brakes and an kind of bike...=-)

Ring guard and metal folding pedals...

The view from the rubber side of the beast...

Up high at the control end of things...lovely...=-)


29 11 2010

I must have been thinking ahead to 2011!

Every year I have at least one project bike and try out some new gear that’s been on my mind.  My main focus for 2011 will be to upgrade and improve my existing rides.  Here is what I am thinking of for 2011:

  • I’m going to put some energy into learning to unicycle.  Paul lent me a couple unis to try out.  I haven’t got to the point where I’m for sure going to take this up, but I should know by the end of 2010.  If I do I’ll score a uni for myself.
  • Sharon has realized that although her cruiser/city bike is nice to look at she needs a more efficient ride if she is to cover a lot of kms riding to work and for errands.  So I’m going to build her a Surly Cross Check [in Robin’s Egg Blue] using the main parts from her cruiser.  The more aggressive riding position and option to go with drops should be useful while still ending up with a nice looking ride.  Assuming she loves it I’m thinking of adding a dynohub wheel and headlight in the fall of 2011 for her birthday as her commutes to work start getting darker.
  • We’ll save Sharon’s city bike frame and any parts we don’t swap over to build up a SS Burning Man bike for 2012 when we head to the playa again.
  • My trusty Surly LHT is going to get a dynohub and dyno headlight for 24/7 light action.  I’ve really enjoyed the dyno setup on my Bike Friday NWT and it’s time to give my LHT the same treatment.  I’ll use a Shimano dynohub, but haven’t settled on a headlight yet.  My LHT will also get some smooth fast rolling Grand Bois Cypres tires.  I’ve been waiting until the existing Marathon  XRs wear out, but that is taking forever so I’ll pull them and save them for when I need a heavier tire on a tour.  If I get really into it I’d like a bigger/longer mudflap on my LHT, but that would be a luxury…the existing one is adequate.
  • My Surly Big Dummy will get a dynohub [a 26″ Shimano dynohub wheel I used on my Thorn Nomad] as well as a dyno headlight. Not sure about the headlight yet.  I’m thinking I’ll probably get an uber nice one for the LHT and a nice, but reasonably priced one for the Dummy. I can always swap them if I need a killer light on the Dummy.  I’ll probably swap the Jones Loop H-bar into the Dummy to test it out.
  • My CETMA cargo bike will get a hydraulic disc brake on the front wheel to address the spongy brake action caused the long convoluted cable run. I still haven’t mounted fenders so that has to happen and I think, given the short rides I do with it, I’ll mount a less expensive SDG saddle and save the Selle Anatomica for a rig that sees bigger distances.  I’m considering pulling the Rohloff hub from the CETMA and replacing it with a cheaper Nuvinci IGH.  I feel like the Rohloff is kind of wasted in that bike and I’ve been interested in the Nuvinci so this would be a good opporttunity to try one out in an application where the smaller gear range and higher weight isn’t an issue.
  • My Bike Friday NWT will get some full coverage Planet Bike Fenders and some fresh white bar tape. If Solidlights is still doing the XB2 light upgrade I may send my Solidlights dyno light back to the UK to get the upgrade from brighter LEDs and a focused optic.
  • My Pugsley needs a saddle [I stole the Selle Anatomica for the CETMA from my Pug].  Rather than put the SA back on I’ll replace it with SDG plastic saddle unless I take it on tour where the SA would be appreciated.  I’d also like to swap in some MTB riser bars from my spare parts bin for the Titec H-bars to get a better relationship between the brake levers and the shifter/grips.  Right now I can’t have my hand on the grips fully while braking which is a problem in technical terrain.  I have a set of Surly Larry knobby 4″ tires I will be installing on the Pugsely in 2011 to improve traction in the wet.
  • My Bike Friday 8spd Tikit has a new stem riser waiting on installation.  The new one piece unit replaces the previous separate stem and steering riser combo.  I’ve got to replace the whole drivetrain on this bike since it hasn’t seen any love since new.  It also needs a new set of Greenspeed Scorcher TRs.
  • I’d like to get a tour of Vancouver Island in this spring…from Port Hardy back down to Victoria.
  • I’d like to fit in more mountain biking.  Kiteboarding dominates my summer weekends, but I can fit more mountain bike rides in during the week.

There is also some stuff that I’m less certain about that is bouncing around my brain.  These items may not happen, but who knows?

  • Getting a tandem.  I’m continuing to do research and will hopefully get some test rides in over the next few months to confirm our interest in riding on the same bike. I’ve got a few possibilities on paper right now, but nothing that is so compelling I’d rule out other options.
  • Alfine 11 – I’d like to try one out, but I haven’t got a solid idea of where I might use one.
  • Carbon belt – I’d like to try out a carbon belt drive at some point.  I’m not 100% sold on them, but without trying one it’s hard to speak about the benefits vs. a chain.
  • Trying out a BQ approved 650B rando style bike.  I’m curious if I’ll come to the same conclusions as Jan Heine and the only way to know is to try one. I’m not ready to spend top of the line custom $$ on one so I’d be looking at something that’s in production like the Boulder Cycles Randonneur.
  • I’m contemplating riding some more brevets this year…if I do it will be just the shorter ones [100K, 200K and 300K].  I’ve got to find my love of long solo training road rides.   I’ve also done all my previous brevets on a recumbent.  I don’t own a bent and I don’t see one in my immediate future so I’d probably press my Surly LHT or BBC 24 into service.
  • I’m considering building a bike storage area in my yard to free up garage space.  It would be a concrete pad with eye bolts sunken into the pad for locking points.  It would have a roof, but not be fully enclosed.  I’d lock up my more sturdy bikes there [like my Surly Big Dummy] giving me more room in the garage and also making getting rolling on these bikes faster.
  • I may get rid of one of my two fixed gear bikes to free up some space.  I love the fixed gear experience, but one bike would meet all my needs.

Herman loves the Tikit…

30 09 2010

One Way Tikit...

I flew into Victoria last night and wanted to meet up with Sharon and some friends at Herman’s Jazz Club. I rode my fixed gear Bike Friday Tikit downtown so I could throw it into Sharon’s Mini for the drive home.  The ride into town was fun. I sometimes forget how fast this bike can go when I’m in the mood to crank hard.  I blew past everyone on the MUP and I’m sure I left a few wondering what in the heck I was riding.  When I got to Herman’s I folded up the Tikit and rolled it inside.  The place was nicely decorated and the crowd was busy listening to Amy Thiesen sing.  I wasn’t sure where to leave the Tikit.  As I hunted around for a good spot an older fellow [Herman??] came rushing over. I assumed he was going to give me grief for bringing a bike inside so I prepared my best I-don’t-have-a-lock-and-my-bike-is-clean-and-tiny-and-I-plan-on-spending-$$$-here story.  But, before I could even start he shows me a handy little nook that was perfect for the Tikit and comments on my “cool bike”.

Herman’s Jazz Club is really nice and because they let me bring my folder inside I could enjoy a beer and the show without worrying about my bike locked outside.

Score another great Tikit moment!

Liberating my Tikit from Sharon's Mini...

My little orange buddy!

1 09 2010

Would you make your friend ride in the back?

I went to pick up my truck from the garage recently and rode the One Way Tikit to get there.  As I was folding it and about to throw it in the back of my pick up I realized that was no way to treat a good friend!  So I made room for my trusty Bike Friday in the passenger seat next to me.

I figure take care of your friends and they’ll take care of you…=-)

Kite – Tikit

29 08 2010

Kites at Cook St. beach, Victoria BC...

Sharon and I were biking downtown on Thursday and she commented on how windy it was.  It occurred to me folks might be kiteboarding down at the Cook St. beach so I checked the wind speed on and then the webcam at Big Wave Dave.  Sure enough the wind was wipping in the right direction and kites were in the water.

One Way Tikit on the beach...

At the top of the long & steep set of stairs own to the beach Sharon started to lock up her bike when she asked me if I thought  it was a safe location to leave it.  I said – probably, while folding my Tikit and carrying it down to the water were it would really be safe!  One of the benefits of being a Bike Friday owner…=-)

Ian with his Flysurfer kite...

We had a great, but chilly time watching 10 kiters and 1 windsurfer ripping it up.  The launch at Cook St. [aka Kook Street] is quite challenging with a short rocky beach butted up against a steep vertical 50′ cliff.  So I was happy just to watch for today and see how everyone launched and landed their kites.  If you are going to get  hurt kiteboarding it’s most likely during the launching/landing phase when there are all sorts of hard objects to hit!

2011 Ocean Rodeo Razor in action...

We got to see the new 2011 Ocean Rodeo Razor kite on the water.  It looks great and I’m keen to demo one when they hit the stores.  After about 2hrs we were frozen [didn’t bring warm clothes!] so we packed it in.  I must admit it makes me really happy to live in a town where I can bike, SUP, kiteboard, sea kayak within a 5km radius from my house…=-)

Narrow beach at Cook St...


27 08 2010

No lock? problem just bring 'er in...=-)

MKS Half Clip Deep

18 08 2010

MKS half toe clips...

I went down to Fairfield Bicycles last weekend and found they had the VO half clips I was looking for as well as the MKS units shown above.

MKS half clips on MKS QR pedals...

Although the MKS clips were double the cost of VO clips they were deeper which seemed preferable and at $29cdn they were within my budget.  Given the cost of shipping anything comparable I ordered online would have been as much if not more.

front view...

The clips went on in under 5 mins. Each attaches to the pedal with 2 bolts.  All the hardware and a hex key were provided.  Since the pedals are MKS as well everything went together easily.

The MKS clips add a bit of bling to the One Way Tikit...

The clips look nice and are quite stiff.  Their weight makes them hang from the pedals so there will be some scratching on the “nose” of each clip.

Using the MKS clips with my trail runners...

I tried the clips with my trail runners.  These shoes have a hard plastic insole and are quite slippery on anything less than BMX platforms with traction pins.  I have ridden the Bike Friday One Way Tikit with these shoes without clips and it wasn’t fun.  Using the half clips was much better.  Fairly easy to flip the pedal up and slide my foot into the clip without looking down.  While riding they keep the shoe positioned properly and don’t let it slip forward onto the plastic insole.

Front view of shoe in clip...

Naturally these half clips can only offer a limited amount of foot retention.  However, as I expected they provide enough security to make shoes I wasn’t comfortable riding in before work fine.  Most importantly to me they only add the slightest extra hassle getting in and almost no hassle pulling my foot out.

Clipped and ready to rip...

So far the only thing I would change if I could is make them about 1″ deeper horizontally so I could position my foot slightly further forward on the pedal.  Thanks to everyone to provided suggestions for my quest to add some toe clips to this bike…=-)

Velo Orange Deep Half Clips

11 08 2010

Velo Orange Deep Half Toe Clips...

I’ve been looking for a foot retention system for my Bike Friday One Way Tikit that lets me use any shoes, platform pedals and doesn’t add much hassle to my ride.  Dynocoaster – a member of the Bike folding bike sub-forum pointed me to these partial toe clips sold by Velo Orange.

They look ideal:

  • nice looking
  • enough foot retention to make a difference without locking down my feet
  • easy in and out
  • low cost

Unfortunately they are out of stock, but I’ll keep checking back and I’ll post a review when I get a set.

One Way Tikit Upgrades Part 1…

4 08 2010

My Bike Friday One Way Tikit's current spec...


  • Brooks B17 w/ rain cover
  • Planet Bike Superflash
  • rear brake removed

My "new" black steerer tube...

The steerer is now black with the help of some electrical tape!

More comfy cockpit...

The cockpit:

Greenspeed Scorcher Rough Surface Test

3 08 2010

The most challenging road surface I ride regularly is a long wooden decked bridge on the Galloping Goose MUP here in Victoria BC.  It gives me issues with even my 700c wheeled bikes.  My Bike Friday Tikits with Greenspeed Scorchers do really well on this bridge.  I’m often overtaking folks on big wheel bikes who are vibrating so hard their teeth are about to come loose.  I can definitely feel the gaps between the wooden decking on my Tikits, but most of the impact is absorbed by my tires.  Having too much time on my hands I shot a video riding with one hand at a decent speed over this bridge.

Restraining myself…

20 07 2010

MKS pedals on One Way Tikit...

I’d like to add some foot restraints to my One Way Tikit.  Riding fixed gear means you can’t stop pedaling.  It also means that if your feet fly off a pedal on a bump they don’t stop turning which can be dangerous and is definitely makes it hard to get your feet back on.

Power Grips...

I tried a set of Power Grips I had in my parts bin on the MKS pedals.  They mounted fine, but getting in and out with the shoes I typically wear [trail runners] was a hassle.  Although I’d like some foot restraints I’m not prepared to sacrifice ease of use or have to change the foot wear I use.  If I did I might as well wear SPD shoes and clip in.  Since I love the flexibility and ease of use of the Tikit the last thing I want to do is complicate things by my pedal and/or foot restraint choice.

Mini-Toe Clip...

My next move is to try out some mini-toe clips like the ones shown above that just grab the front of your shoe.  They obviously don’t provide as much holding power as Power Grips or a full cage toe clip with straps, but they may be the ideal mix of ease of use and hold.  Given their low cost they seem worth a shot.

5.10 Impact Low bike shoes...

For the time being I’ve found a pretty effective solution.  My 5.10 Impact Low mountain bike shoes feature a very very grippy climbing rubber sole. I tried them with the MKS pedals on my Bike Friday and they work really well for keeping my feet on the pedals.  Most trail runners have a hard plastic section under the arch to protect/support your feet from rocks.  That’s great for trail running, but not so good for cycling since that’s often the area that my pedals  touch when I’d riding and it’s quite slippery for a metal pedal.  These 5.10’s have a flat uber sticky sole so there is no problem.  Since I like them, they suit my minimal style needs and they are very comfortable I don’t mind riding in them a lot of the time. So for now I’m happy!

Bike Friday One Way Tikit

11 07 2010

Love getting a box from Bike Friday...

I love it when the UPS Store calls me and lets me know that I have a box to pick up.  Usually if it’s a big box they want it picked up right away as they don’t have a lot of room.  You don’t have to twist my arm!  I rode right over and grabbed a box from Bike Friday.  As per usual the box was expertly packed and the bike in perfect condition.  Unpacking a Bike Friday takes a lot more time than a typical bike, but the benefit is you have some time to appreciate all the fine details of your new bike as you remove each individual piece of packing material.  Funny thing is I keep all this stuff and when I sent my Tikit back to Bike Friday a couple years ago I tried to repack it like they do and totally failed!  I bet you when the shipping dept folks opened that box they were horrified!

She's a looker in orange...

One Way Tikit Specification:

  • large Tikit frame [~58cm TT]
  • steel frame hand made in Eugene, OR
  • heavy rider option [stiffer frame]
  • hyperfold quick fold mechanism
  • Dutch World Cup Orange powder coat
  • Gearing 54T x 14T [fixed] = ~ 65″
  • 349 wheels [unbranded]
  • Greenspeed Scorcher tires
  • Tektro V-brakes & levers [front and back]
  • 165mm cranks
  • chain ring guard
  • 3/32″ 8 spd chain KMC
  • MKS EZ Promenade QR pedals
  • Carrying Handle
  • 80mm stem
  • flat MTB bar
  • saddle currently Selle Anatomica…eventually Brooks B-17
  • fenders
  • front rack [not yet installed]
  • rear rack [from my old Tikit]

One cog, no derailluer, no coasting...

Why fixed gear?

First off I gotta blame Kent Peterson for planting the seed many years ago.  As I read about his fixed gear rando adventures I had to admit that clearly a bike with one gear and no coasting was capable of some great things.  That didn’t make me run out and get a fixed gear, but it did take away some of the disbelief that riders actually gave up their gears willingly.  The next nail in my gear coffin was Tarik’s blog…I remember reading a post of his about a fixed gear folding bike and why that was a good idea. The final fixed gear role model I had was Walter from Bike Friday…he showed me his One Way Tikit when I visited Bike Friday HQ.  Walter is a guy who knows his bikes…so I pay attention to what he rides!

This spring I built up my first fixed gear bike, a Surly 1×1, and confirmed that I really enjoyed the simplicity of a fixed gear.  I also confirmed there was little to no performance difference for my general city riding. I climb as well as my geared bikes…actually faster since I can’t shift down. I am fast riding in stop and go traffic.  My knees don’t mind the fact I’m often riding a higher gear than I might on my geared bikes.

Modular Tikit drop chain tensioner needed here...

For a folder in particular there are a lot of good reasons to go fixed:

  • no shifter req’d
  • no rear brake req’d
  • no rear derailleur
  • no cables running to rear
  • no delicate parts to damage in transit or while shipping
  • lighter bike

I don’t ride my Tikit as much for pleasure as I do for errands, commuting and work.  These are all uses that favour simplicity and reliability…..which makes fixed gear a logical choice.

I should also note that there is something really fun about riding fixed.  There is not much to think about as far as your bike goes so you spend more mental energy experiencing the ride itself.

Love that orange chain ring guard...

The Ride

Keep in mind my old Tikit is a 2007 model so I wasn’t sure what tweaks Bike Friday may have made over the years to their 16″ wheeled commuter bike.  They’ve got a culture of continuous improvement and upgrading so even bikes made  in the same year may be slightly different.  Climbing aboard the One Way Tikit I felt right at home.  One of the major reasons I ride Bike Friday folding bikes is I can get a bike built to fit me [~58cm TT] rather than try and fit myself on a one size fits some product. Let’s face it if that worked we’d all be wearing the same size shoes, pants, etc…   The handling of this new bike feels very similar to my older Tikit – which is to say nimble, but stable.  If you have never ridden a small wheel bike and are test riding a Tikit give yourself 5 mins to adapt. I find that if I am away from my Tikit for a few months and climb back on it takes me to the end of the block until I feel at home…after that I can ride with one hand or no hands and bomb around town with total confidence.  In particular I think the Tikit’s handling shines in busy city riding conditions.  When you are dodging obstacles and continually stopping/starting the nimbleness of the Tikit puts a smile on your face.

Greenspeed Scorchers...

The gearing at ~65″ is right around what Sheldon Brown recommends for general purpose fixed gear riding and that’s about what I have on my Surly 1×1.  So far it’s working well for me on both bikes.  I would describe the feeling as never wishing I had a bigger gear or a smaller gear…I sort of forget about my drivetrain and just spin the pedals.  I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that Sheldon nailed it once again.

I ordered this bike with the heavy rider upgrade [good to 260lbs] simply because I like the feel of a stiff folder and weight is not my primary concern.  To be honest the bike feels really light when I pick it up which surprised me, but I haven’t added the racks yet…I’ll try and track down a scale and weigh it, but it definitely feels lighter than my old Tikit.  As expected the frame feels stiff and solid when I get out of the saddle to hammer – as one must do with a fixie since there is no low gear.  The bike feels tighter than my old Tikit…that may be the heavy rider upgrade or just the fact it’s brand new.

Made in the USA...

All my folding bikes are running on Greenspeed Scorcher tires.  They rock.  Seriously…I was happy to see Bike Friday started carrying them…that saves me immediately taking off the stock tires and putting Scorchers on my new bike.  Without a doubt good rubber is the fastest, easiest and cheapest way to improve the performance and comfort of your bike.  The best thing is with a larger volume supple tire like the Scorcher you get both – the supple casing acts like suspension, which your body appreciates, and it makes your bike roll faster which everyone likes.

Folded and ready to roll...


The hyperfold works a lot like my old Tikit which is to say super fast and easy….effortless.  This is another reason why I ride a Tikit vs. another model of folding bike.  Nobody makes a folder that comes close to the lack of hassle of the Tikit.  See the video below…that video got me well and truly hooked on owning a Tikit.  The One Way Tikit features a new version of the rolling handle that is easier to use and provides stronger support for the long seatmast above it.  My only quibble with this handle is that the bare metal is slippery and not as comfortable as I’d like. I’ll be tracking down some black bar tape and wrapping this handle shortly.

The folded bike stands on its wheels and a small rubber “foot” when you put it down.  It can be knocked over though.  Once a rear rack is installed the folded bike becomes uber stable.

Miscellaneous Observations

  • the One Way Tikit ships with front and rear Tektro brakes which are totally functional, but won’t make anyone swoon with component envy.
  • welds are clean and look excellent to the naked eye.
  • powdercoat is bright and well done.
  • the MTB bars are really wide and I’ll have to cut them down a bit.
  • the rubber grips are better than the old style foam grips, but they won’t last more than a few days on this bike.
  • MKS pedals are nice and grippy, but if you don’t install the safety clips they have a tendency to eject at an inopportune moment – on a fixed gear that spells OUCH!
  • GS Scorchers just barely fit the front fork with no extra room.

Grip, brake lever and bar...


One really cool thing about getting a Tikit with modular dropouts is that you can buy it one configuration and then swap it over to another fairly easily.  For example this One Way Tikit can be changed into a Season Tikit by swapping in an IGH or into a derailleur Tikit with the addition of a cassette rear wheel.    That gives you a lot of flexibility.  You might enjoy riding a fixed gear for your around town commute, but want gears to tour.  It’s to know you have choices and a great reason to get a Tikit with modular dropouts.

Love that headbadge...


I’ve got some upgrades in mind for this bike to dial it in for my needs:

  • remove rear brake [no cables running to back end and it’s not needed on a fixed gear]
  • cover naked rear brake studs
  • shorten front brake cable
  • install racks front and rear
  • cut bars by 2cm each side
  • install Ergon grips
  • install bar ends
  • install Power Grips on pedals
  • swap in a Brooks B-17 saddle
  • install Planet Bike Superflash to rear
  • install bell
  • add Dinotte 200L-AA headlight when night riding
  • install seatbag with tools and spare tube

Other side of folded Tikit...

I’ll be posting all my One Way Tikit photos on Flickr here.

Thank God It’s Friday!

9 07 2010

A Dutch World Cup Edition Tikit...

I’m off for a couple days of kiteboarding so no time to post a lot of details yet, but since it was Friday I thought it was an appropriate time to share these photos of a new Bike Friday in my garage.  Fixed gear, Dutch World Cup Edition One Way Tikit.

Simple, effective and fun = fixed gear...

Surly 1×1 Moment…

11 06 2010

...loving the fixed gear.

How many bikes do I have?

7 06 2010

Surly 1x1

Santa Cruz Nomad

Surly Pugsley

Bike Friday New World Tourist

Surly Big Dummy...

Bike Friday Tikit...

Surly Long Haul Trucker...

Click on any photo to see more images of that bike…

SA 3spd Fixed Gear IGH

19 05 2010


SA 3spd fixed gear IGH...


I was at Campione Cycles yesterday and spotted this Sturmey-Archer 3spd fixed gear IGH built up in a Surly Cross Check frame.  I had heard of this hub last year, but since I wasn’t riding fixed gear I didn’t pay much attention to it.


Shift cable entering hub...


The hub is small and the shifter cable and shifter are low profile.  The shifting action is smooth and it changes gears easily via a down tube mounted shifter.  The whole setup is clean and doesn’t mess with the aesthetics of the fixed Cross Check.  The only negative comment I can make [which was shared by other folks in the shop] was that there was a noticeable bit of slackness in the drivetrain when applying pressure to the pedals in the opposite direction.  That felt really weird when you are used to the totally solid fixed gear feeling.  It feels broken!


Downtube mounted shifter...


Typically I’m a fan of IGHs.  I was offered one of these hubs recently to test and declined.  Maybe I’m too “young” a fixed gear rider to get the point of adding this hub to my bike?  Perhaps in a year or two I’ll be stoked to give it a try? For now it seems to be counter productive to throw an IGH, shifter and shift cable on my nice clean/simple/bombproof fixed gear.

Especially since I’ve now tackled the two worst climbs in the centre of Calgary on my fixed gear and been pleasantly surprised I not only got up them okay, but I was quite a bit faster than normal and no more tired at the top.  If I was going to add an IGH to my Surly 1×1 I’d probably just throw a Alfine or Rohloff in the back and get 8-14 speeds.  That seems to make more sense and justifies the additional complexity more than 2 additional gears.

If you are a fixed gear fanatic and “get” the 3 speed SA IGH please explain it to me.  I’m not very knowledgeable/experienced with fixies and maybe I’m just overlooking something obvious.

Karate Monkey Big Apple Monster

7 05 2010

Surly Karate Monkey in lovely Chum Bucket red...

I stopped in at Fairfield Cycles [Victoria, BC] this week…very cool shop….Ortlieb, IGH bikes, folders, bents, cargo bikes…sweet!  Anyways not being in the market for a bike I was just browsing when I saw this nice 20″ Surly Karate Monkey with monster 2.35″ Schwalbe Big Apple 29er tires and fenders…the bike looked perfect and ridiculously huge all at the same time so I had to take a test ride.

Fat rubber and fat fenders do fit fine...

I was amazed that there was so much clearance in the fork for huge rubber and fenders to match.  I was also surprised that I liked the Chum Bucket red colour of the frame…I hadn’t been too stoked based on pictures I’d seen, but it looks quite nice in person. The 20″ frame fit me great and the bike was built up as a useful about town ride.

Single speed simplicity...

The KM was light and nimble despite the big wheels.  I would have lowered the pressure in the Big Apples quite a bit to take advantage of their suspension potential if it was my bike.  As it was the BAs rolled great and I was able to slalom around the neighbourhood with a big grin on my face.

I’m used to riding a fixed gear now so it felt strange to be on a single speed bike that let me coast…it almost felt wrong…=-)

Fenders...disc brakes...bring on the wet...

I gotta say this was a fun bike to bomb around on and setup like this would make a great all weather commuter.  As it turns out this bike is slightly used and priced at $1100.00cdn…somebody is going to have a big smile on their face.  Thanks to Max at Fairfield Cycles for the test ride…=-)

Beer there done that…

16 04 2010

Surly 1x1 street art ride...

I always thought the bike component beer openers were useless poser gimmicks – until today!

Surly Tug Nut to the rescue...

My friend James’ art.

My friend Dela’s mix.

I’m glad it’s spring…=-)

Surly 1×1 Fixed Gear Mk2

15 04 2010

My Surly 1x1 fixed gear Mk2...

I’ve been posting about a Surly 1×1 build over on my Bow Cycle blog.  You can see the Mk1 version below and the new Mk2 version above.

Mk1 version of the build...

My initial goal was to use mostly parts that I had in my spares bin.  Once I had tested out the fixed gear concept for several weeks and liked it a lot.  I was willing to invest some $$$ as there were a few things I wanted to change.  I should note that I sold a frame and carried the money over to my LBS to pay for these upgrades.  The total was exactly the cash I had in my pocket from the frame sale, to the penny, so clearly the Universe is stoked about this bike!….=-)

Velocity B43 rims...deep and delicious!

The biggest change was getting the wheels [kept the previous hubs] relaced to Velocity B43 deep V rims.  This is partially functional in that the BB is a lot higher so I can corner much more aggressively.  And partially aesthetics – the bigger wheels with skinny rubber fills up the frame a lot nicer than the 26″ wheels did leaving enough room for some fenders.

Triple PB Superflash for mega visibility in all weather conditions...

I also added:

  • All City pedals
  • 2 more Planet Bike Superflash red blinkies [total of 3!]
  • ground off a tab on the Surly Tug Nut chain tensioner so I can access the drive side rear fender mount.
  • Planet Bike fenders

Ground down Tug Nut so I could mount fenders...

I do have a few Mk2.1 upgrades still planned:

  • toe clips and straps
  • higher quality 32mm tires

Front end...

I’m finding that the bigger wheels and resulting bigger gear take a bit more effort to spin up to speed, but once I’m there the bike wants to cruise like a steamroller.  With a higher BB and heavier wheels the bike isn’t quite as nimble as the previous version, but having a ton of cornering clearance is well worth the trade off when you cannot stop pedaling and need to lean the bike over.

Mec grips...

I must admit the white MEC grips are pretty, but not as comfortable as the Ergon Grips they replaced.  It’s only a matter of time before I swap the Ergons back in.  I’m running 28mm Continental Ultra Sport tires which are a good value at $24 each, but I would like something a bit more supple and a bit wider.  I’m in no rush, but when I come across some nice 32mm tires I’ll swap ’em in.

Back end...