MtnBikeRiders.com

Underneath the robe you find a man. Underneath the man you find his nucleus.

Here’s a couple of stinky helmets that haven’t been washed in a long time. I’m sure you’ve got one or two of them that smell like feet.

All you need to do to get rid of the funk is get a bucket, some dish soap and a bit of vinegar.

Mix the soap and about 1/4 cup of white vinegar in a bucket and fill it up with water. Then take your helmet and slosh it around. On my skater helmet I removed the padding and made sure I scrubbed those well. I also would scrub the straps with hands/fingers making sure I get rid of that muck and mire made out of sweat and dirt.

Once you’re done scrubbing it, rinse it thoroughly. You’d be surprised on how well the vinegar and soap removes that funky smell. Let it air dry and voila! You’ve got a great smelling helmet!

Double Banger Tandem Build Progress Report

Posted by RL Policar On July - 16 - 20131 COMMENT

Nick D. welding the tubes to the rear triangle of the tandem.

The first order of business was to tack weld the eccentric bottom bracket (EBB), then build the jig.

To make the new tubes used to extend the tandem, Nick D. made fish mouth cuts to the ends so they can fit just right onto the bottom brackets.

After Nick D. built the jig, he mounted the two frames then tack welded the bottom tube. Notice the front, we had installed the EBB. Both bottom and the top extension tubes were measured to 29″. This will give the Stoker ample room in the rear without making the bike too long.

Here’s a shot where the top has been welded on. It’s starting to look like a real tandem!

After the frame cooled down, we wanted to mock it up and see how the frame will look. So we installed the rear suspension linkages, bottom brackets and cranks. The frame still has more work to do, mainly a cross bar that will go from the rear bottom bracket to the captain’s seat tube right underneath the top tube…make sense? We also still need to make shock mounts. Nick D. wants to run a design where we have multiple shock mount positions. That means depending on the type of travel we want, we can adjust it.

Double Banger Tandem Project, 80% done.

Here’s a different angle. Did you notice that the timing chain and drive train is on the same side? Most tandems have the timing chain on the left side. But I didn’t feel like spending a ton of money on tandem specific cranks. So I ended up using 34t chain rings on the front and rear timing, then I’ll have the drive train run on 32t/22t. With this set up, I am able to get enough clearance from both chains and still be able to shift. One thing I’ve learned with tandem riding and racing, you don’t need a big ring. So eliminating the 42t chain ring made sense and using that spot for the timing made even more sense.

Front timing chain with a 34t ring. Yes I know that it’s missing ring bolts, I have those in a box.

Rear drive train with timing gear.

A closer look of the timing and drive train system.

Nick D. was able to take some video footage of the build work. You can see them below:

High Speed GoPro footage of the build

Another angle of the high speed GoPro footage of the tandem build

The Double Banger Tandem Project has been sponsored by the following companies:

Serfas. Bringing Cycling to Life.

 

Ghetto Tubeless follow up…3 years later!

Posted by RL Policar On July - 15 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

A few years ago we did a video showing how we converted standard tires and rims to tubeless, or some might call it “Ghetto Tubeless.” Since then I’ve converted a number of my bicycles to this tire system. One of them was my downhill bike, the Airborne Taka.  I had raced 2011 and part of 2012 with the ghetto tubeless and never had I flatted during those events. In fact, I had never flatted with the Ghetto Tubeless with the Airborne Taka.

Fast forward 3 years later, I’ve maintained the ghetto tubeless on the Taka and found myself at Snow Summit Adventure Park in Big Bear, Ca. This was actually my 2nd trip up there with the Taka with this tire system.

During our second run through the trails I distinctly remember my rear tire hitting hard against a sharp rock. I recall hearing the “DING” on the rim. Sure enough, I had a flat…or so I thought.

Here I am trying to pump the tire back up. I was planning on changing to a tube, but the Taka has bolts on the rear wheel and I didn’t bring a wrench. So I sat there pumping and pumping in hopes the Stan’s Sealant would start to work its magic. I kept hearing air hissing out of the tire, but I kept at it.

Eventually the sealant found its way to the leak and did it’s job by patching the hole from the inside out. You can see where this occurred on this photo. From the looks of it, I had “burped” the tubeless. This is means the tire broke apart from the bead and the seal came apart, causing air to come out. Lucky for me the tire resealed it self and within 10-15 minutes I was back on the trail!

This was taken 4 complete runs after I had initially flatted.

If I may add, Lady P was riding the KHS Lucky 7 with the same Ghetto Tubeless system on the tires. No flats that day!

So why do I keep my DH bikes (Taka and Lucky 7) with Ghetto Tubeless? Couple of reasons, for one you saw that its self sealing in most situations. Secondly, I like to run my tires at low pressure when riding downhill. Low means 27-32psi on the tires. This allows me better control and grip on some of the terrain that SoCal dirt has to offer. Not all my bikes have tubeless, but for my DH bikes, it’s something I make sure they have installed for situations like the one above

Mobile Bicycle Repair does it again.

Posted by RL Policar On July - 8 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

We assembled another team of volunteers to help fix bicycles for the homeless. If you are interested in volunteering or donating goods, simply reach out to us: info@mtnbikeriders.com. The next outing will be on August 4th, 2013 at 3:30pm.

Read more about the Mobile Bicycle Repair Unit.

On Saturday a few of us set out for a ride through Aliso Woods. Normally it’s pretty cool there because it’s within walking distance from the ocean. Walking distance would mean like a few miles. I’m sure you could walk it, but I wouldn’t want to. Anyhow here’s a view from Lady P’s perspective as we’re trying to figure out where we were headed.

mtnbikeriders.com at aliso woods

At a certain point the heat just made things worse for all of us. Personally I had already bonked after the first climb, while Doc Thunda and our friend Josh had mentioned they were out late drinking and partying as it was 1999. Here we are at another junction on the trail, not really sure where to go, the heat had clouded out judgement.
aliso woods mtnbikeriders.com

Eventually we figured out what we were going to do. Here’s my vantage point after the ride…I was beat!

Heat is one thing that I consider such a buzz kill. I can handle the cold, but the heat is something else. It’s not like I can dress down any further when it’s hot. Besides I really doubt that anyone would want to see me riding in my birthday suit and if I fell, can you imagine how much road rash I’d get! Yikes!

Where do you buy your bicycle stuff from?

Posted by RL Policar On June - 27 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

For the last 10 years I’ve purchased my bicycles, parts and accessories from a few different sources. Some have been through brick and mortar bicycle shops, some times it’s been online and a few other times it was through a swap meet or Craigslist. I do have to admit that I’ve only personally purchased a bicycle online. That was for Lady P’s Valentine’s present.

But through the years we’ve performed reviews from various brands that offered a range of mountain bikes from bicycles online such as Woodstock Bikes, Ibex Bikes, Airborne Bicycles and Motobecane. So that means that I wouldn’t have any issues with ordering complete bikes online.

Sometimes when I am sourcing parts for various projects like Burt Reynolds or any other bike I’m working on, I tend to go to Ebay first to check prices. Then I’ll visit other sites that I think would have good prices. If I don’t order it online, that’s when I’ll pay a visit to some of the local bike shops in my area. For the most part the shops will have the part I need and if they don’t,they can get it there in a day or two.

However, one of the best things I’ve done is to send an email out to some of my favorite bicycling friends to see of any of them have the part I’m looking for. If they do, half of the time I end up getting that part for free or at a big discount. I actually pay that forward if I know of anyone that needs parts, I extend the bro deal to them.

So back to the question above, where do you buy your bicycle stuff from?

We’re having an open casting call: Audition now!

Posted by RL Policar On June - 24 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

Yes you’ve read it correctly, we’re doing an open casting call for new writers on MtnBikeRiders.com. As you may have noticed our content has been stagnant lately. That’s partly due to the fact I’ve been learning how to do Karate stuff. Check out my class.

Anyhow, let me digress to the subject at hand. So we’re looking for people to write for MtnBikeRiders.com. I’m sure you’re asking what’s in it for you. Well, all sorts of stuff. For starters, you get to use MtnBikeRiders.com as a platform to express your creative self. Plus you may be tapped on the shoulder to help with product reviews. MtnBikeRiders.com often gets asked by companies to test out things for them. Do you get paid? Um ya actually we do offer pay in the form of compliments, high fives and pats on the butt.

compliments
We know that you’re a busy guy or gal and so all we’re asking is that you contribute as much as you can, but realistically 1-2 times per month. But don’t be lazy. I once had a writer who committed to writing for me once a month on one of my other sites and the bum wrote 3 articles in 9 months! Anyway, 1-2 times per month, or as many as you want in a month is what I need. Heck once a week would be a dream.

What should I write about?
Uh duh…about riding of course! For the most part you handsome guys out there are pretty handy with your hands and so you can give our readers a hand by showing them how to work with their hands. You could also do ride reports, jokes, recipes for mountain biking food/drinks, reviews of your own that include tools, products and beer.

Do I have to be a racer? Um, no, where did you even get that idea from? Oh, I know! It’s probably because you’ve seen us post race pics and reports and so you felt intimidated by our prowess. But fear not, all we want to know is that you can dance! That’s right, DANCE!

No no no…not like this.
dance!

But like this!!! Angry Dancing!

So now that you know what we’re looking for and you can angry dance, give us a shout out in the form of an email:info@mtnbikeriders.com or leave a comment. We want to pick 2-3 new writers as soon as possible. Thanks and good luck!

This is how we do it…

Posted by RL Policar On June - 16 - 20131 COMMENT

We’re taking a page out of Montell Jordan’s song for this article, hit play as you read the rest of the stuff.

Now that the song is playing, we’ll use it as a sound track. On Father’s Day, Art Aguilar and I met up for some product testing and photos. You see, Art is testing a water bottle and we decided to go all out on this simple product. Yep, this is how we do it on MtnBikeRiders.com…all out. I was hoping you’d catch that on the previous sentence, but wasn’t sure so I added it again.
mtnbikeriders.com

Art was showing off his new helmet and glasses. I think they look sharp on him.
art aguilar mtnbikeriders.com

When we got to our testing spot, we wanted to show you how serious we take our jobs at MtnBikeRiders.com. Notice our serious face? Ya, that’s real serious. Just look at Art, I don’t think I’ve EVER seen him this serious, so that means it’s legit and when it’s legit, it gets REAL serious, like a heart attack, but heart attacks aren’t funny because those are pretty serious. In fact, Art only gets serious for a few things. 1. Product Reviews 2. Business Time     3. Downhill Racing 4. Drinking Beer and last but not least 5. Bowel Movements, this should have actually been #2…get it…#2. If you’re not sure what a bowel movement is, Google it.  By the way, see that right there, where I’m pointing to, that right there is where we left our bikes. Serious.
mtnbikeriders.com free product reviews

As the test was going, this product fell off Art’s bike. He had to hike back up to grab it.

The camera doesn’t do this hill much justice. This was some SERIOUS steeps we were dealing with. Just look how Art had to climb back up…for reals, yo, STEEP!
art aguilar mtnbikeriders.com
Then next thing you know, this chump gets in my shot. Karma got him back because the climb was sooooooo steep, that he fell over because he couldn’t get his foot out of his pedal in time and plopped right over. He was succumbed to fits of rage that had included several profanities and vulgarities that only people who drive a Ford or a Dodge would do.

But I digress. Check out how Art shows how he does product photos for his reviews. Full on SLR camera. None of this smart phone crap that take INSTA-SUCK pics, he goes ALL OUT because he’s SERIOUS YO!

So now you see that this is how we do it. We take our job seriously and we’ll go all out just to test a water bottle. I’m actually looking forward to seeing this review that Art is cooking up, should be a good one!

Do you ever feel burnt out from riding?

Posted by RL Policar On June - 10 - 20131 COMMENT

I know I know, some of you are thinking that this isn’t possible. But you know what, it’s happened to me more than a few times. In fact just last year I felt it from May until September. It’s this overwhelming feeling of just not wanting to ride, or lack of motivation to get on the bike. What’s trippy about this whole experience is that you feel weird because you shouldn’t be having these funky feelings of not wanting to ride because riding is something you just love with…or at least you used to.

In years past, I’ve tried mixing up where I ride, who I ride with or what time I ride. But you know what, all that did was make me not want to ride. But here’s some stuff that did work for me, perhaps it will help you.

1. Change things up with your bike. One thing I found that keeps me excited about riding is changing things up on my bikes. Take for example Burt Reynolds. This started off as a Redline D600. Very basic, entry-level 29er. I first gave the bike the moniker of Burt Reynolds due to the color scheme of the bike, black, gold and grey. It reminded me of the Bandit in the movie Smokey and the Bandit. I started this on-going project with Burt Reynolds back in December and now it’s May and I’m still changing things up on him. He’s gone from the 24speed that weighed over 32lbs to a 26lbs rigid, single speed, then to a 27 speed rigid, then new carbon bars, then wider aluminum bars, then M-Bars, then a suspension fork, then a 2×10, then most recently, new-to-Burt wheelset, tires, handle bar and stem. Oh and I can’t forget his newest bling, a gold Chris King headset, to match the small gold pin striping on the frame. During all these changes, I had even considered powder coating him pink, but decided against it because I like the idea that Burt Reynolds is a boy bike and felt weird changing him to a girl bike.

2. Timing. Try riding as fast as you can on the trail you most frequent. Set up a route that you could see what your best time would be. Use mobile apps like MapyMyRide, Strava and others to see how you rank against other people who ride the same trail. I know that 2 of my friends compete with each other on Strava, but neither of them know this. I figured it out when I visited each of them at different occasions. Friend 1 said that he noticed Friend 2 was making some progress on Strava. But wanted to make sure that Friend 2 wasn’t going to beat his mileage and times on the trails. When I visited Friend 2, he mentioned that Friend 1 was gaining up on his Strava results and assured me that the long 25 mile ride he had planned would put him over Friend 1.

3. Ride with newbies. Recently I started riding with one of my buddies from church who just got into the sport. He’s pretty fired up and because of it, he was able to influence some of his coworkers into joining him. Sure enough every Tuesday and Thursday for the last few weeks I’ve been joining their group of 6+ riders on a fun pace with tons of jokes and laughter. It really us fun to ride with guys who are just getting into it because if you recall how it was for you, anything new is like a adventure.

4. Use riding as a form of exercise. Believe it or not, riding your mountain bike does burn calories! Ya, so that means rather than going to the boring gym, go out for a ride. Use mountain biking as a cross trainer for other sports like hop-scotch, kick ball, and noodling.

5. Last but not least, hit up a different trail. Nothing says new than a new trail. One of the rides I recently went on was with Cuz’n Joe. He took me part of a trail that I’ve never been before and I LOVED IT! I want to go back again but I don’t know my way around the area yet. So until I do, I’ll need a guide.

Hopefully these simple tips can help you not feel burnt out and get you back in the saddle. If not, you could always get into collecting cats.

I’ve got a bike project with half of a frame

Posted by RL Policar On June - 6 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

If you recall this was the front triangle of the frame we used for our rear triangle on the Double Banger Tandem Project. Not wanting to have it go to waste, I decided to use it for a project that I’ll later reveal. But for now, here’s some pics of it. I used some Mother’s Mag Polish on it to bring out the mirror finish I had laid down a while back.

I’ll probably touch it up with some 2000 grit sand paper and do another round of mag polish. So this project of mine, you might be able to see what I’m up to in the photo below. There are some obvious hints.

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