Wednesday, March 27, 2024

Peugeot saddlebag support UPDATE

After trying the first saddlebag support rack on the Peugeot and finding it wanting, I swapped it over to the Rivvy, where it still needs adjustment but is working better there.

I went looking for another one and found it at the Bike Recyclery, a Portland shop dealing in vintage bikes and parts. The maker was unknown, suspected to be Japanese, and seemed like a far better shape and a better attachment design that might work, so I gulped and sprang for it to the tune of thirty bucks. (Though when I consider what I spent on buying, shipping and powder coating the English rack that’s now on the Rivvy, this may have been a bargain. Don’t tell my partner.)

Today I installed it on the Peugeot. And I learned two things: first, these cool, old saddlebag support racks are designed to work on road frames, where these less space between the seat stays and the rear wheel and between the rear wheel and the installed rack. Secondly, those design characteristics mean that any vintage support may work, but will look a little odd on a mountain bike, even an older one.

Still, I forged ahead. And along the way, I had to do some cutting and filing in order to accommodate the frame’s rack eyelets because I didn’t want to cut them off. It took some doing, but in the end I made it work. Again, it’s not a perfect fit, and it won’t be on a mountain bike, but it makes me happier than the previous rack did.


Getting the clamps to fit inside the space between the sear stays and above the brake cable hanger was a tight fit. Squeezing the ends together hurt my hands and I had to try several times before I was successful.

Then I had to remove the rack and cut and file space to fit around the frame’s rack eyelets, which I didn’t want to remove in case I wanted to use a full-sized rack later on.

The aluminum alloy rack came slightly bent out of alignment, and I had to be very careful about how much pressure I used to realign it so I didn’t break it. In the end, with several adjustments in a well-padded bench vise, I got the lower half of the clamps to properly align. If I want to bring the upper half of the clamps into better alignment I might have to use a hammer and punch, after zip-tying the lower halves into place and letting the outer-pushing spring of the rack do its job, I find that it’s holding solidly enough for now. I’ll add thicker zip ties to the top halves if I think it’s needed.

If I tie the rear of the bag to the seatpost and close the bag, it sits well enough on the support that the support actually makes sense. If you look closely at the first photo, you’ll see that the end of the rack flares up just slightly, a nice touch that helps keep the bottom of the bag from rolling off the back of the rack. A coroplast stiffener inside the bottom panel of the bag may help reinforce that aspect. I’ll cut and install that tomorrow and see if it does.

Friday, March 22, 2024

Let’s do something stupid: Ladd’s 500


Ladd’s 500 returns for another day of bicycle mayhem.

Saturday, April 13 at Ladd’s Circle.

“Let’s do something stupid!”

Here’s the deal. Every year this event has grown in popularity, and every year the cost of putting it on has risen. David Robinson has been throwing this party out of his own pocket since 2016, but with permit costs rising upwards of $1200 (!!) it’s not feasible to keep expecting one guy to do all the heavy lifting.

So I’m going to suggest that, if you plan to show up to ride or watch, bring a few dollar bills with you, ask around for David (he’ll be in the middle of the circle with several hundred other people), and press the cash into his hand as a thank-you for all his hard work, and to help defray his out-of-pocket costs. 

See you on the 13th.

Wednesday, March 20, 2024

Bike Happy Hour and getting my bearings again

#bikehappyhourpdx tonight was awesome. 

Hung out with a mix of new and old friends, excellent fries and fabulous #bikeogling — plus a sweet invitation to put my bicycle knowledge to work as a volunteer at @bikefarmpdx ! James from Bike Farm assures me I wouldn’t have to turn wrenches, and that I can talk someone through a repair and help them learn how to do it

I think I’m gonna take them up on the idea.

As long as no meetings are involved. 🤣

If you live in Portland and haven’t yet been to Bike Happy Hour, make it a Wednesday evening destination soon! You’ll find all kinds of bicycles to ogle, delicious food and drink, and some of the nicest folks around. Sometimes it’s just casual conversation, other times Jonathan (Maus, your host and founder of will invite local bike geeks on government and advocacy to come and field questions about bicycle transportation policy. It’s often interesting, and always fun.

And next week, I hope to gather some donations of stainless steel water bottles, to wash and regift to Blanchet House to hand out to people in need who are living outside. I’ll post on Facebook to remind people early next week, but feel free to spread the word yourself.

Happy riding, and see you next week at Happy Hour.

Wednesday evening - Bike Happy Hour?

Who wants to meet up tonight at Bike Happy Hour?

I’ll be there from 3 til around 5-5:30.

Also, I’ve lowered the price on my singlespeed city bike, from $300 down to $225.

Here’s a photo dump of bike content.

Happy hump day!

Saturday, March 9, 2024

FOR SALE in PDX: Deeluxe Singlespeed city bike! LOWER PRICE

As much as I have enjoyed this bike, the time has come where I can no longer pedal a singlespeed bike.

My knees simply cannot handle it anymore.

So as of today, it’s for sale.

Steel frame, 21” c-t, top tube 22” c-c. Ideal for someone between 5’ 6” and 5’ 8” tall.

Singlespeed with freewheel and hand brakes.

Converted to 26”/559 wheels with long reach calipers.

Special additions include Brooks B-17 saddle, PDW Bodega Basket, Karrimore saddlebag, Misfit Psycles handlebar. I could take these off and sell separately, but together they really complete the bike.

Upright, comfortable ride, perfect for around town riding.

Conversion and overhaul was done by a professional shop mechanic.

As it sits, I’d like $225 cash. NEW LOWER PRICE

If you want, I can swap in cheaper saddle and remove basket and saddlebag for less money.

PM me for a meetup.

Friday, March 8, 2024

Rack swap

Rack swap on the All-Rounder, after a nice slow ride in the sunshine.I’ve shored up the washer situation to spread the torque over a larger surface area and preserve the original bolt recesses in case I decide to put everything back later. 

The rack isn’t perfect for so large a bag but I think it’ll work well enough.

The previous rack will go with my Burley Travoy cargo trailer, which I plan to sell this spring. I don’t plan to haul anything that heavy anymore.

Happy riding.