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Posts Tagged ‘custom bicycles’

Paris-Brest-Paris 2019

August 14th, 2019

I will be offline for a few weeks while I’m away participating in Paris-Brest-Paris for the second time. And randomly, NPR included a sound bite of me during a random report onthe sport of randonneuring.

Evidence of a getaway….

If you are curious about randonnering, a form of ultra distance cycling w/roots in France, here’s an NPR report on the history of the sport (w/a soundbite at the end by me). I’ll post a gallery when I get back, emphasizing custom bikes, canvas bike bags, roadside eats and wool jerseys.

On the bridge in Brest in 2011
On the bridge in Brest in 2011 with Willy Nevin. We both rode custom Vanillas.
Taking delivery of my PBP rig from builder Corey Thompson. I’ll be riding this bike in 2019.
Spoiler alert: I completed PBP 2019 in 88 hours and 50 minutes!
Lesli Larson riding Paris-Brest-Paris
A few notes on my ride over on the Bicycle Quarterly blog

Alert – Archival Kerchiefs

December 5th, 2013

Over the years we’ve been posting on our favorite kerchief projects. We originally declared our admiration for discharge printed kerchiefs sourced via ebay, thrifts and Japanese web shops. Two years ago, I discovered Cornell University’s collection of political american kerchiefs. Our current kerchief favorite is the wave kerchief made by our Archival friends and stockist, General Quarters.  Stay tuned for a new Archival kerchief launch coming soon. Here is an evidential visual of Tom transporting the new Archival Kerchiefs by way of packboard and his custom Coho city bike.

Archival Field Trip – PDX

February 12th, 2013

Over the weekend, I made a quick trip up to Portland to shop for eyewear, catch a film and check in on a few of my favorite shops.  Here are some visual notes from the trip:
New S/S Engineered Garments at Blake
Brand obsession – Masunaga eyewear from Japan (via Blink)
Original Archival Flap Musette on tour 
Bike rack Ira Ryan custom porteur
Sugar Cane Brown Beach Jacket

Shopping for yet another Hario brewing device
Now Playing – Blue Velvet at Cinema 21

From the Archives – Bruce Gordon Factory Tour

December 12th, 2012

Thanks to local bike mechanic, Louis (aka Luigi), for providing me with a print edition of the Bruce Gordon Cycles factory tour.  Conducted in Eugene, Oregon, the tour features Gordon’s revolutionary, all robot workforce.

Per the copy, take the factory tour by clicking the navigation button at the bottom of each page.

From the Archives – Winter Bicycles 1918 Military Cycle

November 12th, 2012

Last week, I took a few snaps of custom frame builder Eric Estlund’s latest project –  a modern interpretation of a WWI military bike.  Dubbed the 1918 after Armistice day,  Estlund’s bike is an homage to the Columbia Military Bicycle models that were issued by the US Government during the war.  While Eric worked from drawings of the original Columbia Military Model, he updated the design and fit of the 1918 to make it more practical for use by a modern rider (in this case, a female Marine and WWI historian).  For studio snaps and a full report on the 1918, check out Eric’s site.

Double top tube for strength and durability

 Modern update – stem mounted shifter 
Internal cable routing to preserve the historical profile
5 speed drum brake –  another modern touch

Client supplied pennies that bracket the war – one from 1914, and one from 1918.
Custom rear carrier
Wool blanket sample for paint matching – Dixie Tan

Shopping from the Future: Vanilla Custom Bicycle

January 20th, 2011

In April, I’ll be pre-registering for Paris-Brest-Paris. Although the Pencil was an early front runner, I’ll be riding my custom Vanilla lugged randonnee on the August 2011 ride. Acquiring the Vanilla was a bit like mail ordering from the future. I submitted a deposit in 2006 and took delivery in September 2010. The bike is a bit of a Rivendell remake (more Herzog’s Nosferatu, less Van Sant’s Psycho). I switched over from 650b to 700c tires, requested lighter weight tubing and integrated lights, rack and fenders. Sacha White, the bike’s builder, was kind enough to borrow a mandrel to give my front fork a nice, low radius bend (à la française).

Here’s an out-of-the-past preview courtesy of the Vanilla Workshop’s flickr photostream:

Photographed outside the Vanilla Workshop in Portland, Oregon.

Austere decaling. Only one panel on the seat tube.

Trusty Acorn Rando Boxy bag transplanted to the Vanilla.

Generator driven, Schmidt Edelux Headlight.

Son 20 front 32 hub. Lightweight for year round use.

Leather chain slap guard.

Updated views from an unusually balmy MLK Day ride:

January edition. Bar wrap and saddle have been updated.

Detail shot of simple lugs and Pacenti Paris-Brest crown.

Sacha special: custom handlebar bag rack with decaleur (not pictured).
For interested parties, here’s a short instructional film on PBP.

Archival Review: Randonneuring Season (2008)

December 28th, 2008

Passing views

Bike stalking

Evidence of my participation (first two photos courtesy CecilAnn)

Some central characters

The Pencil

Subject to further experimentation in ’09

Cue sheet in turmoil
Cue sheet on a napkin (courtesy CecilAnn)
Sample nutrition (jojos)

The Pencil and I did not quite make the RUSA 5000k distance award this year. We did complete our first Cascade 1200, survived a few Seattle International Randonneurs death brevets and pedaled through a very drowsy, 24 hour fleche Ouragan (on the same day Eight Belles broke down in the Derby).

Plans for 2009 remain hazy. Most likely, I’ll be heading down to California for the Davis Gold Rush 1200k or staying in the Northwest for the SIR iteration of the Seattle-to-Glacier 1000k (a ride I did two years, on the Oregon side, from Portland to Glacier).

On a localized level, I’ll be focusing on improving my navigational skills (actually monitoring the line-by-line elapse of my cue sheet) and conducting more micro saddle adjustment experiments (I’m in brand limbo between Brooks and Selle An-Atomica w/a Brooks Imperial in consideration).

The Pencil and I remain on good terms despite the fact that its retro, Bicycle Quarterly inspired drivetrain still terrifies me during slow shifts on super steep grades. At some point, in the next year or so, the Pencil may be readied for rando-retirement in a muddy pasture with cyclocross tracks.

Archival confession: I must admit that randonneuring requires the use of some synthetic clothing layers. I try to make use of as much wool as possible–namely jerseys and extremity warmers. But alas, I’m sadly sold on the superior, wind blocking, moisture repelling properties of tech treated plastic fabrics (in the form of jackets, vests and shoes). There is one gent in our club, Drew, who builds his own bicycles, makes his own sports drink, designs his own bike luggage and wears brown leather lace-up dress shoes, full wool outerwear and a cycling helmet that was ANSI certified in the 1970s. He remains a randonneuring hero to me though I know I can no longer follow his dress code on rides longer than 40 miles.