Saturday, October 12, 2013

Cycling in Northern Wisconsin

Hayward, Wisconsin is known as the home of the Chequamegon Fat Tire festival and the North American Birkebeiner ski races. We have 100's of miles of great single track mountain bike trails thanks to CAMBA. But it is also the best road cycling this side of Europe. The small country roads have excellent paving thanks to the Dairy Industry. The fall colors and fun festivals like the Stone Lake Cranberry Festival add to the enjoyment of a cycling vacation in the Northwoods.

It is great place to combine good food and good friends!

Here are a gallery of images to get you interested and I'll provide some routes for you to consider during your visit.

Road Cycling doesn't get any better than this...

Company Lake Road

Pederson Road

Williams Road

West's Dairy - Ice Cream

Murphy Road
Drummond-Delta Road

Delta Diner, Delta WI -

Friday, May 31, 2013

2013 Cirque Du Cyclisme Presentations

2013 Cirque du Cyclisme Featured Speakers

Wayne Bingham did a great job lining up featured speakers and demonstrations for the Cirque.I wanted to give you the complete videos of the presentations but they are too big so I have just given you some highlights. Our thanks to all of them for informative and entertaining stories.

Jim Merz : Life in the cycling fast lane.

Jon Williams : Modern Millium and Drillium to customize and personalize


Gallery of Work

Johnny Coast : Stories from the shop and the significance of chickens in framebuilding

The Frambuilders Dinner or why you don't mess with Jamie Swan when he is working.

Larry Black : Mounting a Sew-up tire

Earle Young : Wheelbuilding pointers

Harvey Sachs : Everything you wanted to know about freewheels.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

2013 “The Bicycle: Art meets Form” during the USAC National Pro Criterium Championships

July 25 - 28 2013, High Point, North Carolina

A four day celebration of  the bicycle, friends and all things cycling. Centered
around the 2013 USA Cycling Professional Criterium National Championships.

“The Bicycle: Art meets Form” is an inaugural celebration of the art of cycling that, in its various facets, presents a unique event for those passionate about the craft and history of fine lightweight bicycles… both vintage and modern. On this weekend, the most respected craftsmen and aficionados will join to display, discuss, analyze, ride and enjoy this special "tool" known as the bicycle.

As you will see from the schedule of events over 4 days, “The Bicycle” encompasses visual art, a galleried exhibition of 5 “leading lights”in modern handmade bicycles and a separate handbuilt bicycle show, conferences and discussions, movies, music, vintage rides and The USAC Men’s and Women’s National Professional Criterium Championships. We will celebrate the ability of this tool, “the bicycle”, to acquire an acclaimed level of art and form yet while maintaining its refined function as a mode of transport and as a “race pony”. 

Through great hard work and efforts of many, High Point NC was awarded the 2013-2014 USA Cycling Professional Criterium National Championships. The surrounding course and facilities offer great space and proximity to host this and other events. Within 200 yards of the start finish under a block long canopy, there is an art gallery, a theatre, show space, and a first class hotel. So rather than just have another 3 hours of racing, we wanted to create an overall 4 day cycling event that promotes all things cycling and blends the best of vintage bikes and the best in racing and new cycling technologies. This is all about: BIKES, PEOPLE & PASSION

 Our special guests are acknowledged stand out craftspersons of modern bicycle frame building. Theatre Arts Gallery(TAG) will mount a 60 day exhibition of the work of Nick Crumpton, Mark DiNucci, Dario Pegoretti, Dave Wages and Peter Weigle. Each will have a complete bicycle and a custom frame as part of this display. In combination with the with the TAG juried visual bike art presentation, this exhibit should provide a tremendous artistic bike aesthetic. The builders arrive from their distant workshops for this 4 day event and festivities and will lend their knowledge through The Bicycle: Art meets Form conferences and discussions Friday and Saturday.

2013 Michigan’s Vintage Velo Festival (formerly Americane' Vintage Track & Road Bike Festival)

Saturday, June 15, 2013

8:00am until 5:00pm in EDT
    The International Velodrome at Bloomer Park, Rochester, Michigan, is proud to announce the 5th year of this unique event, (formerly Americane' Vintage Track & Road Bike Festival). This is one of the only vintage track and road show and swaps in the USA that meets inside an active track where attendees can also get out and ride (on their own bikes or a loaner provided by the track).

 Michigan’s Americane' Velo Festival is a show and swap meet, bringing together vintage track and road cycling enthusiasts from around the country. Vintage bikes in multiple categories are invited, covering a full century of cycling. We invite anyone who appreciates vintage steel lugged bicycles or “Keeper of the Flame” steel lugged bikes that are built in the classic traditions. We’d particularly like to encourage former track and road racers to come and share their stories, photos, bikes, jerseys, etc.

 NEW this year, the swap meet will be in the main parking lot making it much easier to setup and break-down to free everyone up for more fun in and on the track. As with other years, the swap features a growing group of collectors and private vendors of vintage equipment, giving browsers and enthusiasts a chance to connect over cycling gear of every kind.

 Unlike past years this event shouldn't conflict with any other big event at the track, so there'll be more time allowed for riding the track than before.

 Tentative Schedule of Events:

 8:00 AM: Park opens
 8:00 AM: Swap setup begins
 8:30 AM: Swap meet officially begins
 10:00 AM: Velodrome opens & “Track 101” class starts. Mandatory for beginners, or as a refresher class for those who haven't recently ridden a steep-banked track. Depending on turnout, this class may be repeated. Loaner bikes are available at no cost.
 12:00 PM: Vintage bike show setup
 1:00 PM: Show bikes should be in place and tagged - judging begins
 Show categories:
 * Best Original Track
 * Best Original Road
 * Best Pre-War
 * Best Refinished
 * Best Keeper of the Flame
 * People's Choice
 3:00 PM: Americane' Awards presentation
 4:00PM: Vintage track riding & events (by availability and skill of participants)

 Swap meet and show are FREE for display, vendors and viewers. Donations (via jars on the main registration table) help make the event possible and shared with the IVBP for their nonprofit Velodrome Fund (responsible for track maintenance & operational expenses)

 Track riding is FREE (special for this annual event)
 Bike rental is $5 (½ the normal price)
 Entry fee to Bloomer Park is $5 per car
 Contact Mark Agree:
 Velodrome website for directions and other details:

Thursday, May 23, 2013

2013 Cirque du Cyclisme Swap

Lots of activity at the 2013 Cirque swap meet.
Mark Hoffman driving a hard bargain.

A beautiful Peter Weigle for sale

Mark DiNucci fielding questions from the public.

Tell you what I'm goin to do fer you.

Such a deal!

Earle Young with his great 650B conversion.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

2013 Cirque du Cyclisme interviews continued

Michael Shiffer :

Michael tells us about his passion for Olympia cycles.

 Olympia is celebrating its 120th year in the bike business. Founded in 1893 by Carlo Borghi, it is the second oldest bicycle manufacturer in Italy (behind Bianchi, founded 1885), and probably third in the world (behind Raleigh, 1887). It is unique in having been owned by just two families. The Fontana brothers bought the business from the Borghis in the mid 1950s, and passed it on to their sons who run the company today.

Unlike the better-known Italian marques, Olympia never showed much interest in developing an international reputation. Consequently, their name is barely known in the U.S. Their local reputation is excellent, and rests on their superb build quality, handsome graphics and beautiful paint schemes. Olympia had a vigorous road racing program between the wars and has recently fielded a successful mountain bike team.

They are a small factory, but they produce everything from city bikes to CF racers to hydroformed aluminum frames. They recently bought Scapin so as to keep their hand in the lugged steel high-end frame business.
In the early 1970s I worked as a bike mechanic in a shop near NYC. The owner grew up in Italy with the Fontanas and managed to convince them to sell him about 500 bicycles, to compliment our stock of Peugeot Raleigh and Ross bikes. As a result, I wound up assembling a significant percentage of the few Olympias that grace our shores. The low-end bikes were a tough sell. In spite of being better equipped and finished than the UO-8s and Records, they had no brand recognition. We had only a few of the higher-level perlescent white bikes, whose extraordinary beauty made them an easier sell. I wound up with a couple of them which I still have.

I keep my eye out for Olympias. The two I showed were eBay purchases. The white one was the second in line model called Special Piuma. It came as you saw it: Campy Record derailleurs, Sport crank and small-flange Nuovo Tipo hubs; Universal Super 68 brakes; Sheffield pedals; TTT bar and stem; tubulars and the most uncomfortable plastic saddles ever turned out by an Italian factory (mostly Frecchia d'oro). The frame is Falck double-butted tubing.

The track bike is from the Borghi era. It dates from 1948-52 and came to me incomplete. I built it up with cranks, pedals and wheels from a 50s Frejus track bike. The cosmetic damage is from storage in a humid environment rather than wear. I cleaned off a lot of grime, but did no other cosmetic work. The decals are incredibly detailed, the paint still shows some pearlescence and the lug work is intricate and masterful. The delicate arched seat stay bridge and the unusual seat lug/binder bolt treatment show great design sense and attention to detail. It rides wonderfully, as do my other Olympias. 

Jon Williams :

Jon's black anodized Milled and Drilled 1973 Masi in Samontana Colors painted by Keith Anderson.

Johnny Coast :
Johnny Coast brings two new bikes for the Cirque and a frame in progress designed to use the new wireless S.O.N. generator hub.

Jack Lautsbaugh :
Jack brought three bikes to the Cirque, one of which, his 2010 Bilenky, won "Best Road Bike" in the Craftsman Showcase "Keeper of the Flame" category. Here, he talks about his beautiful red and black Tom Palermo two-speed which he finished building up about a month before the Cirque. Palermo Bicycles is out of Baltimore, MD.

Elton Pope-Lance :
 Elton decided to give the 650B experience an evaluation and is now a convert on his new Peter Weigle.


Chris Bishop : Bishop Bikes  
Chris always makes his own act hard to follow each year. After Dan Artley's beautiful rando last year, I was interested to see what he would bring. I was not disappointed.

Michael Fern :

This was Michael's first Cirque. He brought his NAHBS 2012 Best Road winning bike made by Chris Bishop.

Mike Triton :
Mike came to the Cirque for the first time from Milwaukee, WI with his brand new Weigle 650B rando.