Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Groovy race part deux...

It was a grand slam weekend for the second race in the Groovy Series; perfect weather (the only day in May thus far), good friends, and a full race card including the kid's race, xc race, and the 3rd annual Wootown Single speed challenge...whew!

The race was sandwiched between two work days at the Fire Department, so it was a full weekend for me.  Big props go out to Kevin, Dusty, Mike, and Jay for getting the Knob ready for the race, all I had to do was show up with a smile.

The kid's race continues to grow, with 18 participants from ages 4 to 13 enjoying the family oriented event.  This is the third year we've had the kid's races, I'm so glad to see the little ones out enjoying nature and a healthy lifestyle that mountain biking promotes.  With the push for the High School league taking place here in NE Ohio, I hope that what is fun today will become ingrained for years to come.

Bob Grimm, an excellent advocate for cycling in our area, was out with both his camera and video and selflessly put together some great media.  Check out the video he shot and edited for the kids...

The cross country race was an ironic blend only the knob could offer up...85 degrees and a mix of dusty conditions with 20' long muddy sections, who'd a thunk it was possible?  We had 93 hardy folks show up to test their skills and have a ball.  Young Veda, a 12 year old who is a shining star for the future of our sport drove over from Western Pa to race as well...hope to see more of her and her family, they were good people.

Steve rode away with the young guy expert class, even having the gall to smile at the top of the furnace for the camera :)

while Ross moved up to the old guy experts and showed em what the young side of 36 looks like.  All I know is that Carey just groaned when he saw Ross had made the move up a class...gonna be a fun season to watch.

Bob's talents once again...

The Wootown single speed challenge was a hoot, as always.  Three laps on the kids course interspersed with edible (just barely) challenges made for a lot of entertainment.  In the end, it was a narrow win, but Michael Gottfried rode and masticated his way to the podium to take home the Bad Ass Mofo trophy.

The next race is June 19th at Reagan park for the first NEO time trial.  Y'all gotta come out, it's a super good time.



Thursday, May 19, 2011

Phat Jay...don't peek!

A couple days working sick and a good day today.  Temps were perfect for painting, no bugs yet to shoo away, and a very cool deep east forest motif for Jay's Bigwheel.  A loooong day in the booth, but a lot of fun.

Here's a sneak peek...
Multiple layers of candy Emerald over a deep British Racing Green, with airbrushed ferns and shadows.
Got the first two coats of clear on, gonna hit the sack for a handful of hours and shoot it again before leaving for the FD.

Booty shot...
This is going to be built up with a Ti Unicrown fork, Ti Luv, and a compliment of White Industry hubs and crank in lovely polished silver...should be a killer look.  Hope this makes up for the bike that was stolen from ya, Jay. 

I've been trying desperately to wipe these side projects out of the way so I can get moving forward again on scheduled frames.  I've got about a 2 week window that I must utilize efficiently before I have to make cranks...gotta hustle, hustle.



Monday, May 16, 2011

Down came the rain and washed the spider out...

Yep, still raining, only saving grace is that I'm sick and couldn't do anything fun anyway.  I've been doing what I can, but after I threw up in my respirator today and made too many stupid mistakes, I'm throwing in the towel for the night...

So, heres a few of the things that happened the last week.

I get requests from local riders for all kinds of stuff and it usually is with the same misconception..."you should be able to do it in no time".  Folks just do not realize just how long even little things take.  Take for instance the lowly replaceable derailleur hanger.  Folks forget it's even there until it gets broken, ripped off, or bent beyond repair.  Of course, no one wants to look through pages of hangers and wait for one to arrive, so I end up just making one to get them back on the trail.  The dog gone things take forever though, as there is SO much going on.
Another project that's been taking up floor space for too long was this weight bench.  Wont fit through the door to get it into their basement..."can you just cut it apart and make it so that it bolts back together, shouldn't take more than 20-30 minutes, right?"

Five hours later; bench cut apart, surface prepped, ends milled square, new tabs machined, holes drilled, welded, painted, bolted together and delivered.

Fabbed up more ti bars...

and put together this frame... a dirt road cruiser with box crown fork and a wicked multi layered candy orange finish.  This one is a birthday surprise for a close friend, so I can't reveal much more, but should be a killer build with SRAM Rival components, Stan's wheels, and a few custom touches.  Here's a few shots from the paint booth...

Sunday was Katen's 16th birthday and he requested a HO HO cake, so I threw together this beauty...four layers of chocolate fudge cake with white cream filling, topped off with rich milk chocolate icing.  Yummy.

Two very cool items came in the mail this week...the first is the padded belt runner for my beloved Dotco detail sander.  Going on 17 years old, she still runs as perfect as the first day I plugged it into the airline.  A perfect example of spending a little bit more for a quality item that will last.  A big thanks goes out to you know who for hooking me up with the replacement parts (name withheld by request).

The other item was one that I've been patiently waiting for, this one piece steerer clamp in Ti.  We were hoping to have this available before Nahbs, and although the prototype was there, the stocked product was still weeks away.  Got it now though, can't wait to finish Chad's stem with this beauty.

With the final piece of the puzzel, I hope to wrap up Chad's build and start Martins build this week.  Gonna get some sleep and hope to wake up feeling better.



Monday, May 9, 2011

Week long update

Not much to report folks.  Unfortunately, I gave my life to "the man" this week, never as much fun as working for yourself.  So if you are not interested in non shop related posts, you may want to save yourself the five minutes and move on to something more interesting :)

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday I worked 62 hours at the Fire Department, only getting in a measly 4 hours at the shop in the late evening hours of Tuesday.  I got caught up on a few more lingering Ti bars and powdercoated gloss black steels that should ship out today...
Friday morning I got off duty at 0700, came home for 2 hours, and was then off for our Senate Bill 5 petition Drive Thru, hosted by Wooster Firefighters 764.  Just one of the many efforts to move a politically skewed law to referendum and protect firefighter, police, and teachers jobs here in Ohio.  We were very successful, as 11 hours later we had collected almost 80% of the 1140 signatures we need for our county to get the referendum on the ballot.  Thanks to all the guys and gals who came out to man the petitions.

Saturday morning Em and I were up at 0500 and traveling for a volleyball tourney.  After a looong day of games, the girls were victorious, taking first in gold in Avon...good job ladies!

We were home by 1900 hours, showered, and back off again for Kaltens Big Band Dance; a community fund raiser for the Wooster High band featuring a live band, dancing, and yummy food all 1940's style.  It was a fantastic event, with folks from elementary age to the 70's enjoying the live music, stepping to the beats, and smiling the whole time.  What a great community event.  Big props to Jeff and Daphne Dexter for all the hard work to make it happen.  We were back by midnight, insuring that we did not suffer the same fate as Cinderella...no pumpkins for us.  I was so happy to fall into bed :)

Sunday morning was Mother's day.  I got up early and made Christi and the kids breakfast in bed and with a dry window in the weather, I jumped on the opportunity to mow my 14" high grass...ughh, when will the rain stop? Once I finished up with the hay bailing...I mean mowing (6 hours later, blech) we were  able to get around to the family activities, going for a family ride at the Knob.  This marked Em's first time around the full course, despite a few crashes on the more technical spots, she did awesome. 

So, that was my week...hardly a lick of work done.  Hard to believe how fast it goes by.  Gonna make up for it this week though, as we've got a lot to accomplish.



Sunday, May 1, 2011

Post race thanks...

Saturdays race day was a bunch of fun, with dry weather (the only day in April?), good friends and lots of smiles.

We had a great showing for the first race of the season, with two kids classes, 97 racers for the xc event, and 8 teams for the Muddy Paws race which was sponsored by CycleDog Products this year.  I was really excited for our growing 18 and under class, as the numbers continue to expand, even drawing a real nice youngster, Gavin, up from Kentucky to participate...they are the future of our sport, so glad to see so many new faces enjoying the dirt :)

The day brought demos from Scott Bicycles, Jamis, Raliegh, Intense, Yeti and Mavic wheels and shoes.  The guys loved the venue and would like to return if the event is supported by y'all in the future.  If you liked having them, drop an email letting them know how much their attendance was appreciated.

A big thanks has to go out to Chipotle for providing the grub, Monster for the caffine fix, and DJ Madnote and the Blue Ribbon Bluegrass band for creating  some awesome tunes to socialize by in the firelight. 

The dawn was wet for the downhill race...I apologize for not making it out guys, but got bogged down in the shop and in a moment of inattention sliced my hand open.  Add that to the burn on my arm from welding in a sleepy state (Note: be careful where you rest your arm when you have a table full of hot parts...ughh) and was feeling too miserable to bring an enthusiastic/happy face to the hill, sorry guys.

Overall, it was just like a big family reunion with a few new cousins coming out of the woodwork...good fun. 

Please feel free to give us some feedback on what we can do to create a better event, grow our numbers, and fulfill your needs as a mountain biker here in Ohio.