Why I’m a Weight Weenie

weight weenie

Okay, I’ll admit it… I’m a weight weenie, and I’m proud of it. The reason is really pretty simple: I race mountain bikes and I like to win. I don’t like losing. And winning a bicycle race depends on having the best combination of technical skills, effective power, and luck on any given day. Here is the problem. Luck is largely uncontrollable, although it is amazing how much luckier those who are best prepared tend to be. Technical skills are acquired very slowly and over years of riding and consistent practice. That leaves only one element that can be readily manipulated: effective power. All power is not equal. Think about it. A semi truck engine might produce 700 horsepower and a new sports car might produce 350 horsepower. Which one...

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Schwinn Caliente Fun Bike

Riding my baby to my daily breakfast joint.

I always wanted to build an old-school, steel bike from scratch. I found a 1979 Schwinn Caliente and bought it for $35. It was a hoss, and weighed in at 39.5 lbs. I stripped her down to the frame and then began the two month long chore of hand sanding it down to bare steel. When I finished, I had it powder-coated clear. You will notice that the curing (baking) process on powder-coating turns the steel a bronze-like color. As pictured here she weighs in at 22 pounds with Brooks B27 saddle, mustache bars, dual sided (spd and platform) pedals, and Ksyrium SL wheels. This is one sweet bike build and continues to go through various iterations, including flat-bars, different wheels, fixed gear instead of single speed, and experiments with various gear...

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