Category Archives: Our Bikes

Spring Bicycle Inspection

The beginning of the season is a good time to check our bikes carefully. The last thing we need the evening before a ride is to find out that our chainrings are too worn to work with a new chain, … Continue reading

Posted in Components, Our Bikes | Tagged , , , , | 34 Comments

No Mudflap: What a Mess!

Just one week of riding without a mudflap, and look at my bike! It’s a mess! I ride my Urban Bike year-round in rainy Seattle, but thanks to its generous fenders, it rarely gets dirty. I clean it only once … Continue reading

Posted in Our Bikes, Testing and Tech | 38 Comments

Winter Projects

At this time of year, we plan our rides for the summer. There are so many places we want to explore! We pore over roads and look at event calendars. And we think about changes to our bikes. Some of … Continue reading

Posted in Components, Our Bikes, PBP Preparation | 16 Comments

Am I Retro?

Many people see my bike and think “Retro!” In some cases, this is seen as cool. Others are dismissive, like the famous builder who once compared riders like me to civil war re-enactors, who dress up and play civil war … Continue reading

Posted in Our Bikes | 48 Comments

Too Precious to Ride?

Some people wonder whether special bikes can be too precious to ride. They ask me about my bikes: “Aren’t you afraid that it will get scratched?” or “What if you crash it?” or “What if it gets stolen while you … Continue reading

Posted in Our Bikes | 33 Comments

Why We Don’t Need Rain Bikes Any Longer

I moved from Texas to Seattle 20 years ago and continued to ride and train year-round. At first, I refused to use fenders. I did not want to spoil the beautiful lines of my racing bike. After one miserably wet … Continue reading

Posted in Fenders, Our Bikes, Testing and Tech | 77 Comments

Ride the Bike You Have

“You ride the bike you have, not the bike you might want or wish to have at a later time,” said a famous secretary of defense. (More or less. He was talking about armies, not bikes, but both are tools … Continue reading

Posted in Our Bikes, Testing and Tech | 18 Comments

How Many Bikes Do I Need?

I ride my bike for enjoyment, fitness, travel and transportation. Bicycles fill more than 90% of my transportation needs (with trains, airplanes, rental trucks and cars making up the other 10%).* For all these needs, I only require two or … Continue reading

Posted in A Journey of Discovery, Our Bikes | 55 Comments

Catalogue Specifications and Apparent Bargains

When I started riding seriously while I was in college in Germany, it became apparent that my Peugeot 10-speed no longer was sufficient. Not only did it lack performance, but it required repairs almost daily. So I soon started shopping … Continue reading

Posted in A Journey of Discovery, Our Bikes | 19 Comments

Half a Century Old and Still Going Strong

I am the fortunate custodian of a lovely 1962 Alex Singer that is in almost-new condition. It has all the features that make an Alex Singer special, and really represents Alex Singer’s ideal of the perfect bike: lightweight, elegant and … Continue reading

Posted in Our Bikes | 43 Comments

Fully Integrated Design

Car drivers are lucky: They can buy sports cars that are fully equipped to be driven in the rain and even at night. And their fenders rarely rattle loose, their lights don’t fall off, and most car owners think little … Continue reading

Posted in Our Bikes, Testing and Tech | 25 Comments

A Performance Bike

In recent years, the bike industry has realized that most riders don’t race, and so the racing bike has been renamed: It’s now called a “road bike” or a “performance bike.” In the minds of most cyclists, a performance bike … Continue reading

Posted in Our Bikes | 48 Comments

Keeping an Eye on Cranks

I spend so much time assembling test bikes, testing components, etc., that I have little time to work on my own bikes. Fortunately, my Alex Singer (above) has been very reliable, even though it is 38 years old and has … Continue reading

Posted in Our Bikes | 20 Comments

How Durable are Grand Bois Tires?

Tires are the most important component of your bike. Supple high-end tires roll faster and are more comfortable. A set of great tires transforms your bike’s feel. The down side is that high-end tires can be more fragile than sturdy … Continue reading

Posted in Our Bikes, Product News, Testing and Tech, Tires | 23 Comments

A Journey of Discovery, Part 7: The Future

In this series, we have explored how our preferences changed from mid-trail geometries, 700C x 28 mm tires and saddlebags to low-trail 650B bikes with much wider tires and handlebar bags. What will come next? Will we soon ride fully-faired carbon … Continue reading

Posted in A Journey of Discovery, Our Bikes, Testing and Tech | 21 Comments

Which Bike to Ride?

Most of the time, I ride two bicycles: My 1973 Alex Singer Randonneur for spirited rides with friends, and my Grand Bois Urban Bike for rides that involve carrying loads that do not fit in a handlebar bag. (Due to … Continue reading

Posted in Our Bikes, Testing and Tech | 38 Comments

A Journey of Discovery, Part 6: The Way We Ride

In the previous parts of this series, we have looked at how our preferences in bicycles changed over time. More important is how the changes in our bikes have expanded the way we ride. Indeed, we replaced saddlebags with handlebar … Continue reading

Posted in A Journey of Discovery, Our Bikes, Rides | 11 Comments

A Journey of Discovery, Part 5: Frame Stiffness

In the previous parts of this series, we have looked at how our preferences in bicycles changed over time. We started out on “state-of-the-art” bikes with mid-trail geometries, 700C x 28 mm tires and saddlebags. How did we come to … Continue reading

Posted in A Journey of Discovery, Our Bikes, Testing and Tech, Uncategorized | 27 Comments

A Journey of Discovery, Part 4: Front-End Geometry

How did our preferences change from our familiar bikes with mid-trail geometries, 700C x 28 mm tires and saddlebags to low-trail 650B bikes with much wider tires and handlebar bags? In the previous parts of this series, we related how we … Continue reading

Posted in A Journey of Discovery, Our Bikes, Testing and Tech | 23 Comments

A Journey of Discovery, Part 3: Wide 650B Tires

How did our preferences change from our familiar bikes with mid-trail geometries, 700C x 28 mm tires and saddlebags to low-trail 650B bikes with much wider tires and handlebar bags? In the first two parts of this series, we talked about … Continue reading

Posted in A Journey of Discovery, Our Bikes, Testing and Tech | 17 Comments