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San Diego Pedicabs

Bike Hugger - Mon, 07/11/2016 - 16:04

A couple weeks ago, I attended a Sony launch in San Diego, and took these frames of a LED, lit up pedicab. It’s a remarkable gif because it was shot in such low light with a 50mm f/1.4, and the mirrorless camera continued to track the subject in focus. Read more about the event and the lenses Sony released in an article I wrote for Shutterbug.

MTB Nationals return to Mammoth; LIVE STREAM on Saturday

USA Cycling News - Mon, 07/11/2016 - 15:11
Nearly 100 national titles will be on the line in Mammoth this week, and there will be a live stream of the menand#39;s and womenand#39;s pro short track races!

After 83 cars park in Mississippi Ave bike lanes, city issues 83 tickets

Bike Portland - Mon, 07/11/2016 - 14:21
Somebody started it and many others decided to follow suit. Bad idea.
(Photo: Portland Bureau of Transportation parking enforcement)

When an urban neighborhood holds a beloved street festival, space becomes scarce — and less space-efficient transportation options become a much worse way to get there.

A single city parking enforcement officer almost certainly paid for his or her time at the Mississippi Street Fair Saturday, issuing 83 parking tickets for $80 each to cars parked in Mississippi’s bike lanes during the annual north Portland festival.

City code prohibits parking any vehicle “on or within a bicycle lane, path, or trail,” among other places.

The Mississippi Street Fair’s website warned that “parking enforcement will be out” and highlighted the paid parking lots at two nearby schools, with proceeds to benefit the schools. It also noted three temporary bike parking locations and transit access via the Yellow Line and TriMet’s frequent No. 4 bus line.

City spokeswoman Hannah Schafer said Monday, in response to our email query based on some Twitter chatter, that the city’s parking hotline (503-823-5195) had “received a service request at 12:22 p.m. on Saturday.”

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Schafer sent over some photos taken by the enforcement officer who responded to the call:

This definitely isn’t the first time a Portland bike lane has been illegally converted to parking, and it won’t be the last. The city’s complaint-driven parking hotline can often be frustratingly inconsistent or slow to respond.

But we’re willing to bet this’ll be the last time for at least 83 attendees of the Mississippi Street Fair.

— Michael Andersen, (503) 333-7824 –

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City has authority to impound privately-owned bikes parked at Biketown racks

Bike Portland - Mon, 07/11/2016 - 13:42

This is how a Biketown station should look when it’s empty.
(Photo: Peter Koonce)

In case you haven’t heard: Don’t lock your bike to one of the orange Biketown racks. If you do the City might cut your lock and impound your bike. Why? Because those racks are only for Biketown bikes.

After docking stations were installed last week they were almost immediately used by people looking for a place to park their own bikes. The issue forced the City to post a relatively aggressive tweet that was picked up by the local media. After that dust-up we asked the city if there was any city code that specifically covered this issue. There is.

PBOT spokesman Dylan Rivera said they will continue to use social media and signage at the stations to educate people about the parking rules. “We don’t want to have to remove anyone’s bicycle!” he said. “Our hope is that with education and warnings we can reduce the incidents of people locking private bikes to Biketown racks.”

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But if the education doesn’t work, Rivera says the city will lean on ordinance number 16.70.330 of the Portland City Code. That ordinance — the same one that allows them to confiscate bicycles left in the same spot for over 72 hours — gives the city the right to immediately impound a bicycle if it, “obstructs or impedes… vehicular traffic.”

“In this case,” Rivera tells us, “the vehicle is a bicycle.”

The ordinance also gives the city the right to charge a fee for retrieval of impounded bicycles but Rivera says, “We do not plan to charge fines at this time.”

Even if your bike gets removed and confiscated by the city, you’ll very likely get it back. The ordinance requires the city to make “reasonable efforts” to find the owner and Rivera says they’d hold it for several weeks to give the owner time to claim it.

Biketown is set to launch with 100 stations and 1000 bikes on July 19th.

— Jonathan Maus, (503) 706-8804 –

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Bottom bracket... Strange style I haven't seen before?

Bicycle Tutor - Sun, 07/10/2016 - 09:42
Good afternoon internet hive mind. A friend has inherited a bike that has a wobbly bit somewhere inside the bottom bracket. I'm taking bits from old bikes to cannibalise into a new one to make it...


Courtney second at World Cup #4

USA Cycling News - Sun, 07/10/2016 - 08:11
Kate Courtney(Kentfield, Calif./Specialized Factory Racing) notched another World Cup podium finish on Sunday, this time taking silver at World Cup #4 in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, in the womenandrsquo;s U23 race.

Gwin edged at WC #5, remains first in standings

USA Cycling News - Sat, 07/09/2016 - 07:15
Aaron Gwin(Wildomar, Calif./The YT Mob) managed to hold on to his overall UCI World Cup lead Saturday in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, despite taking second on the afternoon by the narrowest of margins.

Just a Kiss

Bike Hugger - Sat, 07/09/2016 - 03:17

To be punched by Froome, is it like a butterfly’s kiss?

Froome In Love

Bike Hugger - Sat, 07/09/2016 - 02:58

First Froome gazed wistfully at his stem, then lustily heaved himself upon the delicate extension, and made passionate love to it all the way down the mountain.

2016 Mercier Kilo TT Pro

Velospace - Fri, 07/08/2016 - 20:27
Frame / Size / Year:
Mercier Kilo TT Pro / 60cm / 2016

Bike Racers Invented the Airplane

Bike Hugger - Fri, 07/08/2016 - 09:17

Wilbur Wright working in the bicycle shopLibrary of Congress

Huh, I thought that the bicycle leading to the invention of the airplane was well known, but as Margaret Guroff shares in a lengthy article for Fast Company, excerpted from her book, there’s much more to the story. Like, many early barnstormers were bicycle racers first.

That’s right! Bike racers brought America the airplane. Later, they fixated on aero bicycles, but that’s a topic for another post.

The Wrights, by contrast, had an insight that came straight from cycling. They understood that a plane didn’t need to be stable. Like a bicycle, it could be inherently unstable and could be flown in the same way a bicycle is “flown”: by a rider making constant, tiny, unconscious adjustments. “It has been a common aim of experimenters with the aëroplane to solve the problem of equilibrium by some automatic system of balancing,” stated the brothers in a 1908 “as told to” story in McClure’s. “Our idea was to secure a machine which, with a little practice, could be balanced and steered semi-automatically, by reflex action, just as a bicycle is.” The Wrights studied the movements of soaring birds and designed a steering system that copied the way birds torque the tips of their wings when they turn. In the Wright Flyer, the pilot steered by pushing on levers that warped the plane’s wings. (Wilbur first got the idea for the wing-warping system while idly twisting an empty inner-tube box.)

Buy The Mechanical Horse: How the Bicycle Reshaped American Life from Amazon for 18.40 hardcover of 14.72 on Kindle. It includes more stories, and is a lively cultural history, explaining how the bicycle transformed all avenues of American life.

Riders earn spots on Junior Track Worlds roster

USA Cycling News - Fri, 07/08/2016 - 05:37
Thirteen junior American athletes are headed to the 2016 UCI Junior Track World Championships July 20-24 in Aigle, Switzerland, at the World Cycling Centre.

First look: New path north of Sellwood Bridge is open

Bike Portland - Thu, 07/07/2016 - 13:12

A very nice new path segment along the west bank of the Willamette River is finally ready to ride.

Created as part of Multnomah County’s Sellwood Bridge project, it connects the bridge to Willamette Park, a bit to the north. The path was supposed to open a few weeks ago, but construction work was delayed. (This is the same delay that led to an unprecedented last-minute route change for this year’s World Naked Bike Ride.)

Thanks to volunteer correspondent and longtime Multnomah County Bicycle Advisory Committee member Andrew Holtz, above is a thorough and nicely annotated video of the new path and its various spurs.

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For folks heading north from the Sellwood Bridge, the connection to Willamette Park leads to the rest of the Willamette Greenway Trail, the South Portland neighborhood, the South Waterfront and eventually downtown. So this path (assuming it remains open) will eliminate a long-lived and unpleasant detour onto SW Macadam.

One note to keep in mind: there’s a short segment that runs on SW Miles Place, a residential street that hasn’t been a major bikeway before, so people there may not be expecting to see bikes. Use it with caution.

You can read about other features of the new route on this two-page PDF created by the county.

Now if only they’d finish up work on that new bridge itself. Bike traffic will continue to use its north sidewalk only until late October. We hear the final bike signalization is going to be sweet.

— Michael Andersen, (503) 333-7824 –

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Bike Hugger - Thu, 07/07/2016 - 12:10

In case you missed it, the buzz of the camera industry this week is FUJIFILM’s X-T2. That’s their second flagship, next to the X-Pro2, and styled more like a traditional DSLR, instead of a rangefinder. How does it compare to the Sonys we shoot with? We could walk through feature by feature, but it’s mostly the weather-sealing, tough magnesium body, and APS-C v. full frame sensor.

Expect the X-T2 to produce remarkable images, like this one, as a FUJIFILM camera does. And, have features that reviewers find fiddly.

Read more about the X-T2 in a review on Medium Bicycles and get it on Apple News.

Also see this edit….

Crankset repair.

Bicycle Tutor - Thu, 07/07/2016 - 07:29
Hi guys! My bike has been damaged. The crankset is curved now. From the information I have found it is Suntour XCC 48/38/28...


Portland is finally closing the Naito Gap by converting a passing lane

Bike Portland - Thu, 07/07/2016 - 06:53
This 1,500-foot stretch of NW Naito has been a barrier to biking between downtown and northwest Portland, but it’s about to change.
(Image: Google Street View)

After nine years of sometimes elaborate plans to connect NW Naito Parkway’s bike lanes north and south of the Steel Bridge, the city’s transportation bureau has found a way.

The secret: it’s removing an unnecessary passing lane in each direction between NW Davis and NW Ironside Terrace to create continuous bike lanes that will be, at their widest, 10 feet with a four-foot buffer.

In the northbound direction, this will mean converting the rightmost auto lane of Naito into a right-turn-only lane leading to the Steel Bridge:

“In the northbound direction, half the traffic is exiting Naito onto the Steel Bridge,” the city wrote in a memo circulated to northwest Portlanders Wednesday. “The provision of a right turn only lane will facilitate this. In the southbound direction, Naito is already one lane north of Ironside Terrace; with adjustments to the traffic signal timing at Everett, Davis and Couch the traffic should flow well.”

This is basically the same trick that the Oregon Department of Transportation realized it could use to close a different notorious bike lane gap on Southwest Barbur Boulevard. (By the way, stay tuned: we’ve been in correspondence with ODOT for weeks to get an update on that project.)

It’s happening now because the city just repaved the pockmarked pavement between NW Davis and 9th, which in its words “provided a ‘clean slate’ to restripe the roadway.”

The city says the redesign will have the added benefit of reducing excessive speeding here, presumably because the single lane will remove the temptation for anxious people to weave around other cars freeway-style in order to get to wait one or two spaces ahead at the next red light.

Though this stretch of Naito has a 30 mph speed limit, the “85th percentile speed” here is 38 mph southbound and 36 mph northbound. This is a standard way of measuring typical traffic speeds that means 15 percent of autos are moving faster than 38/36 mph.

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Closing the so-called “Naito Gap” was identified as a priority in the city’s 2010 bike plan and last year’s West Quadrant Plan. Northwest of this area, Naito and 9th sees an estimated 1,600 bike trips daily, a number that seems likely to increase with this new direct connection to the central city.

Here are some more details from the new cross-section, proceeding north:

And over the crucial railroad crossing, where the roadway narrows beneath the Steel Bridge. This is the site that has given the city so much grief as it has tried to get bike lanes to cross the tracks at safely obtuse angles, a difficult trick when there was minimal road space to play with:

and finally north of the Steel Bridge overpasses:

Converting the unnecessary passing lanes to wide bike lanes (which the city also did last year on NE 15th/16th in the Lloyd District, with no apparent ill effects) will also greatly improve the safety and comfort of walking across this part of Naito, because there’ll be no more “double threat” when a stopped car in one lane creates a blind spot for the second lane in the same direction. This is one of the major sources of death and injury for people walking.

It’s a major step toward reducing car dependence in northwest Portland.

There’s one possible tradeoff here: when a train is going through, Naito will have less room to store cars, which could cause a queue running south on Naito. But there’s only one significant crossing of Naito that might be blocked — the Steel Bridge onramp at Davis — and it shouldn’t be hard for people to keep their waiting cars far enough apart to keep that clear for people heading over the bridge. It’s notable that Union Pacific Railroad and the ODOT’s rail division have apparently signed off on this plan.

The queue will also actually have an upside for people driving: people planning to use Naito will get advance warning when the train is blocking their path in time to take a detour.

All in all, this looks like fantastic news for closing a gap we’ve been reporting on since Naito first got bike lanes in 2007. In the years since, the riverside north of the Steel Bridge and the north Pearl District further northwest have added thousands of new homes, all of which will now get a dramatically more comfortable biking option into downtown, the central east side and beyond.

This also sets up a greatly improved connection to Naito for the future Flanders Neighborhood Greenway, which will be made possible by the new Flanders Crossing Bridge that seems likely to be funded by the Oregon Department of Transportation’s Connect Oregon program. That bridge would be due to open in 2019, creating the first modern, low-traffic bikeway between the Northwest District and the city’s riverside network of bike paths.

In other words, it’s a major step toward reducing car dependence in northwest Portland. And it’s supposed to happen in a matter of days — in time for northwest Portland to become one of North America’s best places to get around by bike sharing.

“A work order has been issued but we don’t have an exact date yet for when this will be done,” city spokeswoman Hannah Schafer said in an email Wednesday. “Rainy weather the next few days will likely slow down any striping projects.”

— Michael Andersen, (503) 333-7824 –

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Council pulls parking mandate after affordability advocates pile into hearing

Bike Portland - Wed, 07/06/2016 - 16:20
Portland City Council: Steve Novick, Amanda Fritz, Charlie Hales, Dan Saltzman and Nick Fish.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Five days after the city council seemed headed for a vote to mandate garages in larger transit-oriented apartment buildings in the Northwest District, it’s put the proposal on hold.

The decision came after opponents of mandatory parking organized a letter-writing campaign and then outnumbered supporters nearly three to one at the council’s Wednesday hearing.

“We’re going to keep coming up against these choices: do we want a city for people or a city for cars?” said one opponent of the mandate, Rachel Shadoan. “I want a city for people.”

She contrasted Portland with her childhood home of Oklahoma.

“My memories of Oklahoma are of endless driving and miles and miles of parking lots,” she said.

Council says permit changes might better block parking spillover

There were also dissenting voices Wednesday, as well as a general agreement that northwest Portland parking policy needs changes. Among the options discussed were higher street parking permit prices, a cap on the number of total permits issued, some sort of restriction on which buildings could be issued permits or a mandate that applied only to market-rate units.

“As long as parking is cheaper on the street than parking off street, people are going to park on the street.”
— Chris Rall

“As long as parking is cheaper on the street than parking off street, people are going to park on the street,” said Chris Rall, one of many who said parking minimums should be used only as a last resort after other measures are taken.

Four of the five council members seemed responsive to that combination of ideas. Only Commissioner Amanda Fritz said she supported parking minimums for new buildings in the district. But she withdrew that proposal without a vote after it became clear that no other commissioners were eager to endorse it.

“I’ve learned today that there’s a lot of tools at the disposal of NW that we haven’t really explored,” said Commissioner Dan Saltzman. “I don’t want to see this disappear into the ether. I think there’s a sense of urgency, at least in my mind, anyway. I think we owe people in NW one way or the other a decision very soon.”

“This hearing has caused each of us to think about this problem in new and different ways,” said Commissioner Nick Fish. “I love the suggestion that there may be a new and hybrid idea out there that’s worth exploring. I love the idea of looking for a different way of rationing and pricing.”

“Parking minimums are extremely problematic,” Commissioner Steve Novick said. “If you increase the cost of something, you increase the cost of something. There is no way that requiring parking to be built does not drive up the cost.”

Novick said it might be possible to use Northwest to “pilot” new parking permit policies.

Today, the city’s parking permit policy doesn’t cap the number of permits in a given zone. In Northwest Portland, that means a $60-per-year parking permit is sometimes referred to as a “hunting license.” Once it completes a planned expansion, Northwest District’s will have 4,700 spaces available to Zone M permit holders. The city has issued more than 9,000 Zone M parking permits.

As part of Wednesday’s action, the council agreed to make it legal to let institutions like Legacy Good Samaritan Hospital rent out their unused spaces during off-peak hours. That could free up “hundreds” of new parking stalls, a Legacy executive said.

Developer: each parking stall adds $50,000 to building cost Each bar represents one building; the vertical axis shows the number of units in each. Buildings marked in orange would have been illegal under the proposed new rule.
(Data: Bureau of Planning and Sustainability. Chart: BikePortland.)

As we reported Tuesday, city data show that most new buildings in the Northwest District over the last eight years that have at least 10 units are being built with more than they would have be required to under the proposed rules.

But a few projects, accounting for 23 percent of the area’s new housing supply over that period, have less. One large project, the Tess O’Brien Apartments that start pre-leasing 124 studios of about 330 square feet next week, has no on-site parking at all.

Some people, such as Northwest District resident Iain MacKenzie, said mandatory parking rules would block such niche projects that cater to lower and medium-income people, most of them without cars. MacKenzie, who covers the development industry on his site, predicted that on-site parking would force developers to build projects with smaller numbers of higher-end units.

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The one developer who showed up to testify Wednesday said that if the rules were passed, his firm would simply stop building anything with more than 30 units in order to avoid building any new parking.

“The cost of the parking stalls — they’re around $50,000,” said Frank Stock, vice president at MDC Construction. “If you just do the simple math, that’s decades to recover that cost.”

Others testifying in opposition to the minimums included Sarah Iannarone, who finished third in May’s mayoral primary; Margot Black, an organizer of Portland Tenants United who was speaking for herself; and Tony Jordan of Portlanders for Parking Reform, who had worked for weeks to organize opposition to the proposal.

“Northwest Portland has a toolbox full of parking management strategies at its disposal,” Jordan said. “Expanded permit zones, new meters, the recommended shared parking that we’re asking for — and pretty soon we should have better permit programs available as well. So I think there’s much less risk right now in waiting to see how these more flexible and equitable policies play out and then adjust them to work better, rather than applying a policy that might not work very much and certainly would exacerbate the housing crisis.”

Resident: Garages are needed so children can live in Northwest 117 NW Trinity Place, built in 1912, is one of many Northwest District buildings with no on-site parking.

Most of the handful of people who testified Wednesday in support of mandatory parking said they share the civic goals of those on the other side.

“Of course we need more housing,” said Wendy Chung. “Of course we need less cars.”

But Chung predicted that 330-square-foot studios with no on-site parking would become filled with “single professionals.” If all new buildings were required to have on-site parking, she said, then more people with children or disabilities would be able to live in the area because those people, she said, need to own cars.

Chung noted that apartments in MacKenzie’s 89-year-old building, which has no on-site parking, are renting for several hundred dollars less than smaller apartments in the new Tess O’Brien building. She said she wished that new market-rate units like Tess O’Brien weren’t allowed in her neighborhood at all — only buildings that would offer below-market rents.

Many of those backing the mandate, including three members of the Northwest Parking Stakeholder Committee, emphasized that they were asking only to be treated like the rest of the city. In 2013, the city began requiring most buildings with 30 or more units to have parking, even if they’re next to a frequent transit line.

“I see the parking minimums as a little bit of a tourniquet to stop the intense bleeding,” said Karen Karllson, a member of the committee which had voted unanimously to back the plan with new minimums included.

“I don’t remember that kind of unanimity in our past discussions,” Commissioner Fritz noted.

Novick: Citywide permit option might come to council within months Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick.

Commissioner Fish, for his part, reminded the room Wednesday that the 2013 citywide mandate was “never meant to be the final product” and tweaks might be appropriate.

“We called it an interim solution,” he said. “We’re long overdue, actually, to take a look at it. … It appears to be creating incentives to smaller-scale development, which is quite contrary to our development plan.”

One possible solution before the city is to move on a proposal that a team at the Portland Bureau of Transportation spent most of last year developing: a new residential parking permit system that would enforce parking overnight, cap the total number of permits, and could charge more than $60 per year.

Commissioner Novick said Wednesday that he had been holding back the permit policy in order to do public outreach on its thorniest question: how to decide who gets to be first in line for the limited supply of street permits. He said he expected it to come to council “within the next few months.”

— Michael Andersen, (503) 333-7824 –

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Replacing crankset - chainline and bottom bracket question

Bicycle Tutor - Wed, 07/06/2016 - 14:59
Hi all, I have a bike that I'm doing up as a project and I need to replace the bottom bracket (square taper). Since the front chainring (single, 46 teeth) is pretty badly worn I was going to take...


Campaign seeks funds for an indoor park for skating, BMX & other bikes

Bike Portland - Wed, 07/06/2016 - 12:33

Allison Waters, a Portland-based skateboarding lover, has unveiled a concept for a “family-friendly indoor skate park” within Portland city limits.

The current plan is for two days a week to be open to BMX and other bikes.

“We had all through the summer to skate and then it started to rain,” Melissa Clark says in the video for Waters’ Kickstarter campaign, which continues until next week, describing her three daughters’ falling in love with skateboarding. “We are shut down from November until — May? June?”

For $80, early Kickstarter backers can get a full year of standard membership, which includes a discount to the park sessions and shop and early access to events. For $600, they can get a full year of all-you-can-skate “unlimited” membership.

If it’s funded, Waters aims to open the park this fall, ideally in northeast Portland.

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Katie Proctor, a Portland mom who co-founded Kidical Mass PDX and who is supportive of Waters’ park plan, said in an email that the working plan is for bikes to be welcome in the future Stronger Skatepark on Wednesdays and Sundays.

The campaign has set an ambitious target of $25,000. But because this is a Kicksterter, none of the pledges will be claimed unless they actually succeed in raising the money. So if you’d spend $80 or $100 for a year of membership if this park did exist, there’s no reason not to pledge now and help make it happen.

Based on the video, it sounds as if Waters may have a backup business plan if this campaign doesn’t get all the way. But if they can get the $25,000 up front, that’d ensure high quality for the ramps they aim to build.

— Michael Andersen, (503) 333-7824 –

Our work is supported by subscribers. Please become one today.


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Lea Davison Ride at the 2016 UCI MTB World Championships

Bike Hugger - Wed, 07/06/2016 - 11:25

While the Tour has been boring this year, so far…Mountain Biking has not. Instead, Worlds was thrilling to watch. And, the UCI just published this edit from Lea Davison’s ride. Also see our coverage of Scott’s double win.

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