Archive for November, 2011

A Racer’s Perspective

Rob English and the 14-pound road prototype.

[EDITOR'S NOTE: Recently a customer asked for a racer's point of view on Bike Fridays, so we looked no farther than our head designer, Rob English. He put Bike Friday into perspective.]

By Rob English

I am a Cat. 1 road racer, current Oregon Time Trial champion and long time bike geek….

I’ve also been a Bike Friday owner for 11 years — I bought a Pocket Rocket several years before I came to work here.

I have used my Bike Fridays for touring and riding all over the world, including hitting the local hammerfest rides in various countries. And I have done a few races on them, too.

First, the USAC rules question of whether or not Bike Fridays are legal — it is going to depend on the level of the race and how strictly the rules are applied.

Generally USAC follows UCI rules and a Bike Friday is not UCI legal as the wheels are too small (too much of an advantage?!!?), and it doesn’t have a double diamond frame. In most of our customers’ experience, for local races, organizers don’t have a problem with Bike Fridays racing. But at National level they will!

I have always greatly enjoyed showing up at the local fast rides wherever I might be, getting the usual derision of the bike as not being a ‘proper’ bike, then making people change their minds after I drop them on the hills! Very entertaining to educate people about performance small wheeled bikes! I have never felt at a disadvantage in being on the BF on any group ride.

When racing the Bike Friday, I have found that it is very competitive on hillclimbs (I won an open hillclimb in Japan on my Pocket Rocket), and does well in road races, except at the very highest level — doing Elite races in New Zealand I found I had to work a little harder at the very high speeds (32 mph+). To be fair this was on my Pocket Rocket mainly set up for touring — with the Rolf wheels and faster tires on the Super Pro this small difference may be mitigated.

I have traveled with full size bikes in soft and hard cases, a full size folding bike in a hard case, and the Bike Friday in the suitcase. For ease of use the Bike Friday system is unbeatable. I can pack and unpack the bike in under 5 minutes, compared to a minimum of 30 minutes for any other system. And the packed bike is so secure that I never have to worry about the bike getting damaged in transit. Add in the ability to ride to the airport towing the suitcase/trailer and there is no question of the best travel bike in my mind.

Gearing: 53x9x20″ is 118″, 53x12x27″ is 119″ and 53x11x27″ is 130″.  So the Capreo gearing gives you the equivalent of a 12T; if you think you will need bigger then going up to a 55 or 56T big ring will take care of it. I have generally run non Capreo, using either 58x11x20″ = 105″ or 62x11x20 = 113″ and have never had a problem with running out of gears. The Capreo option does avoid the dinner plate size rings though! The Capreo cassette is available from other places, but most bike shops haven’t heard of it, so it can often be easiest to get spares from us. Everything else on the bike is standard though.

A couple of other points: The Pocket Rocket Pro has an incredibly stiff drivetrain — the very small rear triangle in steel gives very direct power transfer. But with the long titanium seatmast, there is a nice amount of passive suspension built in so that it is very comfortable too — that much quoted combination of laterally stiff and vertically compliant…..

In a paceline situation the small wheels enable you to get a little closer to the rider in front, and thus get more draft and less effort. This is great when in a paceline of several Bike Fridays (i.e., our lunchtime ride), as everyone is much closer!

I hope this helps give you some information. I don’t know if you have heard the story of how the Super Pro came to be — we have a customer who had a Pocket Rocket Pro and loved the ride, but wanted something lighter to compare to his custom Seven. He inspired us to create the Super Pro and got the first one, which he then took on the PacTour TransAm — 3000 miles in (I think) two weeks! Bob is in his 60s and takes great pleasure in crushing younger riders — doing it on small wheels adds to the satisfaction!

Let me know if you have other questions I can help with,
best regards,
Rob.

3 comments November 28, 2011

Sonoma County on a Friday

Geoffrey Smith (left) of Bike Partners delivering a Bike Friday rental.

Looking to enjoy the sights, sounds and sweet tastes of Sonoma County on a Bike Friday?

BikePartners.net offers Bike Friday rentals through an innovative rental program featuring Bike Fridays. BikePartners.net offers concierge-quality service.  Bicycles are booked on-line using a national web service, then delivered to the customer’s location personally (in the Sonoma County region), or via UPS door-to-door shipment. 

Orders can be placed for delivery to corporate offices, hotels and convention centers.

Company founders Geoffrey Smith and Camille Armstrong, who have traveled extensively on a Bike Friday tandem, put it this way:

”We wanted to share the love we have for Bike Fridays, so we’ve made access to the bikes easy and fun.” 

Bike Friday gives tourists the ability to travel the countryside with their folding rides packed neatly in the trunk of their rental vehicle – ready to unfold and ride at a moment’s notice. 

“We offer bicycle rentals with a twist,” says Smith.  “Call it a fold or a twist – it works for us!”

Add comment November 25, 2011

Desert Camp deadline nears!

Chris Nelson enjoying lunch.

Come early March, when the winds are howling and the rain pouring here in Eugene, Bike Friday Co-Founder Alan Scholz  plans to head south to join cycling legends Lon Haldeman and Susan Notorangelo for Desert Camp 2012.

Desert Camp is part of the great line of PacTours run by Ultra Cycling legends Lon Haldeman and Susan Notorangelo. Each spring they hop on their Bike Fridays and join other BF owners for a week that you’ll never forget.

If you are interested and would like to receive the 2012 jersey you need to register by December 1.

The Tour of Historic Towns and Hotels will begin on Saturday, March 3, in Tucson, AZ with travel home on Saturday, March 10.

PacTours has designated this camp for Bike Friday owners, inviting everyone in the Community to join other Bike Friday owners in a memorable week cycling.

This will mark Alan’s fourth trip to Desert Camp.

If you’d like to join Alan, register today at PacTour.com. The Camp Jersey this year will feature a new classic team jersey from Voler.

If riders register before December 1st, they will receive this jersey and have a choice of sleeve length and zipper style. (Sleeveless, short sleeve or long sleeve.) You have the option to order a jacket instead of a jersey.

If you’d like to get a taste of what Desert Camp is all about, check out Chris Nelson’s Memories of 2011.

Add comment November 22, 2011

Autumn colors

Bike Friday owner Linda Cook overlooking the Potomac River.

1 comment November 21, 2011

See ya later …

Sid Freund in Naples, Florida

Note from an owner:

Taken recently in Naples Florida.
I love my Bike Friday.

Sid Freund

Add comment November 19, 2011

Winning photo

Beau Owens' award-winning photo of the Bike Friday Tandemonium Band, left to right, Alan Scholz, Damond Vold, Jim Haskell.

Local photographer Beau Owens took this stellar shot of the Bike Friday Tandemonium Band at the Eugene Celebration, and won first place in the “Arts & Culture” category as well as first place in the “Best of Eugene” category in Travel Lane County’s recent “Eugene, Cascades & Coast” photography contest.

Great shot. Sure looks like they are zipping along, doesn’t it?

 

Add comment November 17, 2011

Traveling with a tikit

Just got this note in from Josh Hartman,

a Bike Friday owner (the guy riding away from

his wedding on a Family Tandem):

Hey Bike Friday,

Thanks for making such a great bike! A friend and I toured 60+ miles a day on the
tikits this weekend. We were able to travel so much farther on our tour simply
because we could easily transport the bikes by train and car. Let me just say that
it is the best touring bike I have ever owned and I have owned a lot of bikes!

I thought I would share my video and pictures of our tour on the tikits.

Here are the original quality photos

Here is the video link

Thanks again Bike Friday! Feel free to use these any way you wish.

Josh Hartman

1 comment November 16, 2011

Thanks San Francisco

We had a great time at the SF Bike Expo over the weekend at the Cow Palace.

It was neat to meet many of the Bay Area Bike Friday owners, and tell a lot of potential new comers about our bikes. Just give us a call if you are interested. Love to keep talking.

In the meantime, enjoy a couple of photos from the Fashion Show:


 

 

Add comment November 15, 2011


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