Get Your Soapbox On!

Come out to Fremont on Saturday to witness the Redbull Soapbox Derby. Wright Bros is helping build one of the contestant carts this week, something cobbled together after Johnny’s Last Stand suffered some unforeseen test ride accident. A “Plan B” has been implemented, so I’m not sure how accurate this listing is any longer. It has been interesting working on something other than bikes, yet using bike technology and components. They’re really not that different.

No chain allowed!

This is a view of the modified machine we’re using now. It’ll have to return to it’s original intention of being a pedal car for a young kid. How cool would that have been to have a cart like that when you were young! It sort of breaks the mantra four wheels bad, two wheels good. I only hope this machine passes the “no prefabricated vehicles allowed” rule, it should as it is totally custom made.

In other parts of town, as most of you know in the Seattle area, coming up in a month’s time is the annual Messmann’s Messquerade. This is something not to be missed, come up from wherever you are and participate. Don’t be a dope like I was last year and miss it, I’m still remorseful as to the tragic mistake it was to skip out.

I’m sure more information will be forthcoming, stay tuned.

Self-important Drivel

The recent article in the Stranger regarding the death of a cyclist on Eastlake Ave is extremely aggravating to say the least. To intermittently interrupt the story of the accident by deriding a type of bicycle and a misguided opinion of it being unsafe gives the sense of “blaming the victim”, not to mention being highly insensitive and inaccurately pandering to the masses. It doesn’t even make sense; the author is completely out of her element and yet feels the need to expound on the completely irrelevant aspect of, not the cyclist who lost their life, but rather misguided aspects of a popular cycling trend. (Way to jump on the bandwagon!)

Does her riding a freewheel for 25 years have anything to do with why a kid from Colorado got taken out by a dump-truck on Eastlake? Is this investigative reporting, or some self-important drivel? How about some concrete evidence if there’s going to be an article about something that deals with life and death on Seattle’s streets? How fast was the truck going? How fast was the kid going? Were the bikers in the bike lane or not? What was the truck driver doing while he was turning? Was he paying attention? When were they weaving in and out of traffic? What’s the status of the surviving cyclist? What was his point of view? Were these questions asked or were we just curious on where we can get a Bianchi Pista—gosh they’re pretty and shiny!

I don’t know either of the bikers, but when I saw the memorial at the site my first impression wasn’t thinking it was political propaganda. But I don’t know, my eyewitness account might obviously differ with others. Is this all we know about the accident itself: Differing eyewitness accounts?

We do know the driver took a right turn directly into the cyclists’ path; that he hit both of them….

Maybe this would have been a more interesting aspect to focus on? Perhaps the fact that the driver wasn’t cited could have been investigated into? Fixed riding is not a crime. Is this article building up a case or something against shops selling fixed gear bikes? What was the point of this article? Get your fixie on Jerry Springer—you’re a freak!

I happened to read this article online when I got home last night because people’s rage at it spurred my curiosity. Now I’m aggravated by it. The email I got from Niki at Mobius asks the larger questions, What is the Real Issue? This is the more important question, why would the Stranger think any other way themselves?


The Seattle Post-Intelligencer ran an article on Wright Bros. this weekend. You Fix It… is a nice article in a series called “Retail Notebook” where he reports on small local companies in the business section of the P-I. The article fairly accurately describes how the shop operates and what you’ll find there in not only retail items, but also it’s old world aesthetic. On the day of the article’s release two first-time customers came into the shop, one of which bought a membership and got right down to working on a wheel-build. Nice.

Yours truly was mentioned in the article as well; I happened to be present during Dan’s interview with Charles. The conversation the three of us had was a bit too succinctly summed up with my having “no previous experience” and outright “rejection” in my opinion; but I understand the article wasn’t about me and that journalists have editors telling them to keep it to a minimum when it comes to word count.

Hadrann’s reaction: “I’m fine doing vocational training.”

Concise indeed—considering the portion of the interview with me delved into how being a bike mechanic is very much a skilled trade and learning to become one should be within the accepted vocational arts. With bicycles in growing popularity it’d be sweet to see this attitude further advanced by society at large. Or is the hopeful decline in automobiles giving rise to more bikes and therefore the need for more experienced bike mechanics just wishful thinking?

Hey, at least he mentioned Cranked Magazine.

Marinoni and Deux Secondes

Ostensibly the personality was taken from the man himself, but the Lorenzo in the movie Deux Secondes (2 Seconds) was just the type of mechanic we’ve all encountered one time or another. If this be the actual Guiseppe Marinoni himself portrayed in the movie, it offers quite a romantic biography and history as to how an Italian framemaker could end up in Quebec. At any rate, looking closely, you can see some nice bikes in the background of his shop in the film.


The movie itself was really entertaining, make sure to check it out—it’ll make ya feel good.

Speaking of bike shops, grumpy mechanics, and Marinonis, I know a shop that is going to have a new Marinoni with Spirit tubing. Next time you’re in Wright Bros ask Charles about it he’ll be sure to show off some of the components he’s putting on it. It’ll be a beauty, we all can’t wait to see it—any day now he’ll be riding it around!

Bikes! Real Steel Bikes! Those do make ya feel good!

At it again…

Tyson and Daniel are at it again. You’ll remember them from the two separate articles from issue three and two respectively. Well, they’re both in the process of departing—or are already on their way—on some ridiculously long bike rides. Tyson is traveling down in South America by bicycle and is leaving in a few days I believe. And Daniel has already left for his ride from Seattle to Albuquerque for some reason or another. Last I heard from him he was telling me he’s just gone through 350 miles of dirt roads somewhere in eastern Oregon.

To refresh your memory of these two, you can read about Daniel here in the article from issue two of Cranked: Daniel Featherhead, as well as Tyson’s Puerto Rico trip here: Three Days with No Rim Strip.

There’s also Tyson’s website to take a peek at, gotta say I’m envious of the opportunities he’s gotten through his school. Tyson, way to go! Daniel told me he’s taking even less gear for this trip down to New Mexico.

And another guy who’s traveling by bike: I just met the dude from Zero per Gallon up from California in the shop yesterday, I’ve seen these stickers around a bit and really dig them. I’ve always wondered about that nine-tenths of a cent… these stickers are a great way to say you’re not paying a dime for gas when you’re using your bike.

Who says you need to use gas to travel? Get some of these stickers for your bike.