Monday, December 29, 2008

Mid winter blues.

It happens to us all. Just when the world is literally at its darkest, and warmth seems all to far away, it turns around. We had our longest night of the year back on the 21st. And already things are brightening up. On the looooong drive home last night from Minnesota, Lisa and I noticed that the sunset was later, prettier, and warmer 'feeling' than any we had seen in a while. Seemed like it lasted for ever too. I know we certainly enjoyed watching as we drove along Hwy 52.

Now we have to get through New Years, and this Holiday madness will be behind us, and life can get back to 'normal'. I'm simply looking forward to getting back on the bike! I've got this new Pugsley in the store to play with. The most riding its seen has been to ferry the kids around town so far. Soon, VERY soon, it will see trails. I can't wait.

From Pugsley

From Pugsley

I promise to come back with some shots from the trail too.

Here's to every ones happy new years events. Take care out there, and we'll see you in the store soon, eh?

listening to: The Flaming Lips//In The Morning of the Magicians

Saturday, December 13, 2008

New bike in the stable.

A few years back, I had what has amounted to the best bike I've owned. It did everything 'right'. It climbed easy and stable. It carved singletrack like there was no tomorrow. Descending on it was an absolute pleasure. It went exactly where you pointed it, and stayed on track.

From Vassago y Haro

Taken at the trail head of the Dyke Trail near Crested Butte CO.

I loved that bike. And now it has a new happy home near its birth in NorCal. Mike is always sure to let me know how much he likes the bike. And that is a good thing.

I've got something to replace that loved old bike now. It comes from the same mind that the first one did. Its heart is from the same trails. I can't really refer to it by its given name, so it'll juyst be called the Mountain Cruiser. Its all built up now, but I have yet to get a chance to really ride it. Oh sure, its been up and down the block a few times. You can't tell a thing about a bike with just a few hundred feet under its tires though.

From The Bikes

There is this: It looks pretty cool. See, I've never been a fan of cruiser styled mountain bikes. Stuff I've seen from companies like Black Sheep, Merlin and Spicer. I DO like the RetroTec's, but then they started the whole cruiser thing back in the 90's. This one is different. It try to mimic as much as it tries to emulate. Anyways. The lines are clean, cable routing is very smooth. The look is just right.

From The Bikes

From The Bikes

Listening to: Clutch // Burning Beard

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Holiday Deals!

Holiday Greetings to everyone out there! We do hope that this winter has been treating everyone well this far. Hasn't been too bad quite yet! We may not be riding as much any more, but we still get outside and stay active, whether it be hiking, running, snowshoeing, skiing, or even snow biking (nutters!). Here at The Prairie Peddler, we have some great cool weather jersey's for both Men and Women. We have some wind proof/water gloves. There's even some wool liner/hand warmers here that would make great stocking stuffers!

Its hard to think about biking in conditions like this for normal people. But warmth is just around the corner, and biking season will be upon us again! Don't get caught out with out some new wheels! ALL of the 2008 model bikes by Jamis and Redline are on sale. Prices have been slashed from 15% to 20%! Can't make a whole payment yet? We'll be happy to set up a payment plan that works for you. We're also working on setting up a store credit card program that will make big purchases easy to deal with, with terms better than 'same as cash' set ups.

Lastly, we'd like to remind every one that we DO have gift certificates and gift cards here to get to your loved ones for the holidays. If you are the giftee, let your gifter know what you want!

Thank you SO much for a great first season! We can't wait to get out riding with you all again next year!

oh, and a teaser.
From Vassago y Haro

To be revealed soon. So very soon!

Listening to: Last FM; Loose Fur station

Monday, December 8, 2008

Surly Pugsley in the shop.

From Pugsley

So what's a Surly Pugsley? Well, for the uninitiated, its a bike designed to be ridden nearly anywhere. Soft conditions are its natural habitat with its 4" wide tires. Normally, a bike tire will be half that width and run pressures anywhere from 25 to 45 psi. Because of the sheer volume in these tires, one can easily run down into the single digits for tire pressure, making the effective footprint HUGE, creating a bike that flaots rather than sinks in sand and snow. These are very capable bikes, and very versitle.

And this guy is here for ALL to use. I've purchased this bike for you, the customer to come in and check out. See what the weirdness is all about. Of course there are limitations. You should be fairly tall. At least 5'10" to ride it. See, I got it so it'd fit me too. Kind of. Its a bit small for me, but will suffice.

In fact, its already been reserved by Colin on January 10 so he can attempt the Triple D down in Dubuque. Good luck Colin! I see him riding by the shop almost daily, even in the cold we've been having, so I think he'll do just fine.

From Pugsley

For those familiar with the Pugsley, you'll notice that it doesn't have the Endomorph tires[yet]. They're still out of stock at QBP, but should be in this week. The tires on there now are 2.7" Maxxis Minion DH tires. Big Heavy Beasts of tires. Gripped pretty dang well this morning though. I think I let pressure down to near 10psi. They do tend to climb up the sides of ruts though. These will make good ice tires in the end I think. Nice flat profile [talk about edgy!], and a thick casing should make getting screws in easy. I'll have to try to make it up to Mpls for the ice races....

So when I get the tires in, it'll be ready to go. I've got it set up with a smart package of parts. The SLX shifters and derailleurs are working quite well right now. I like the double action on the 'trigger' shifters now. Makes shifting with gloved hands pretty easy to do. The action of the shifters is no where near as sensitive as the SRAM version either. This is very good news.

From Pugsley

From Pugsley

The thing that's going to be the oddest to get used to is the 100mm wide BB. The pedals are waaaaaayyyy far apart. After riding it, I feel kinda bow legged.

Again, if you're curious about these monster bikes, please do come in and schedule a time to take this creature out. Yes, even in this cruddy winter weather. I'm sure you'll like it!

Listening to: SOMA fm; groove Salad.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

New forkitude.

I picked up a new fork for the Jamis Exile on Monday. Darrel up at Bluedog Customs built it for me. Why did I get a new fork? Well, the reason's are pretty simple. Looking at it, the stock fork on the Jamis is not very confidence inspiring. The legs are skinny. Very skinny. The dropouts are even skinnier. Its veerrryy long. The disc tab is thin, especailly for the 7" rotor I use. All this sveltness under a 220lb agressive rider just isn't very confidence inspiring. Not to mention the fact that this one(the others in the store are fine) has its legs welded on of kilter. It ain't straight.

From The Prairie Peddler - creatin the Shop

So what we have here is the Jamis fork on the left. The Bluedog fork in the middle, and for comparisons sake, a Salsa Cromoto(a fork I like a lot.) on the right. The differences between the Jamis and the BDC fork are stunning, no?

From The Prairie Peddler - creatin the Shop

From The Prairie Peddler - creatin the Shop

Details on the BDC fork: Columbus legs, Paragon drop outs/disc mount. Fillet Brazed construction. 480mm tall, with a 40mm rake. Haven't mounted/ridden it yet. Bikes too dirty, and I'm busy cleaning the shop. Once cut, I bet we're looking at a fork near the 2lb mark.

From The Prairie Peddler - creatin the Shop

From The Prairie Peddler - creatin the Shop

If you're in the market for a new fork, be it road, cyclocross or mountain, give me a shout and I'll be able to hook you up with one of these. Price will be right about $280 for one like mine, bit less for road/cross. So far, I'm impressed, I can't wiat to ride it!

Listening to: Dan Bern/Soul Coughing/Arcade Fire = iTunes mix-a-lot