Tuesday, June 25, 2024
HomeCyclingFlying Off The Handle (Or The Hook) – Bike Snob NYC

Flying Off The Handle (Or The Hook) – Bike Snob NYC

It’s been a few years now since I’ve paid close attention to the professional bicycle racing, mostly because I don’t have the time. However, I was vaguely aware that the Strade Bianche race was coming up this weekend, and so at one point during some couch time I punched up the results on my mobile telephone and saw that Tadej Pogačar just rode away from everybody with like 80 Euro-Miles to go:

Moreover, he finished with a smile on his face and enough time to hoist is bicycle heavenward in celebration:

Plus, before the race, he basically told everyone this was exactly what he was going to do, and they still couldn’t stop him.

And to think I rode behind him for like three minutes:

I really am amazing.

Speaking of pro racing, component companies are still pretending hookless rims aren’t completely stupid:

Prior to last Thursday’s post I knew little to nothing about hookless rims; since then I’ve learned enough to conclude that this may be the dumbest trend in bike tech so far this century. Just consider the follow-up to that video I posted at the end of last Friday’s post:

If you don’t have time to watch, basically this guy’s tire was blowing off the rim in a burst of white jizz like a porn star with premature ejaculation, and the upshot is that the rims are out of spec by some tiny amount that is nevertheless sufficient to allow this to happen. As the video notes, the bicycle industry pushing hookless rims is the same bicycle industry that cannot make an integrated bottom bracket work since they can’t hit the precise tolerances necessary for it not to creak–but sure, go ahead and trust them to leave off the thing that holds the fucking tire on, because theoretically it works just as long as everything is absolutely perfect. And it’s doubly ironic when you consider that, at least before thru-axles took over, you couldn’t even buy a bicycle without fork safety tabs–and yet nobody’s stopping Zipp and whatever brobag company sold this guy his wheels and all the rest of them from selling people hookless rims, go figure.

All that notwithstanding, I saw some speculation in the comments last week as to this guy’s marital status, and I’m pretty sure it’s safe to conclude that anyone using a crabon crank as a door handle is definitely not married:

So yes, hookless rims are ridiculous, but at least the pro cycling pundits are focused on what matters:

Yeah, sorry, the time to speak up was like three decades ago:

Nearly a century of insouciantly-worn caps ruined by Big Helmet. You reap what you sow.

Well, they say it takes a big man to admit when he’s been wrong, and in addition to being a great cyclist capable of holding Tadej Pogačar’s wheel for almost the entire duration of a group ride rollout, I am also fully capable of owning up to my own mistakes. For example, I was reading a transcript of this podcast:

In it, they’re discussing the heavy days of the ‘Rona freakout when everybody was hoarding bikes and toilet paper, and it made me remember how at the time I wrote this:

Well, here we are four years later and the bike industry is apparently a mess. Clearly we should have told just told the transient Pando Cyclists to fuck off, that there are only enough bikes and parts left for us real riders, and that they should go take up jogging or something. Sure, it sounds harsh, but perhaps had we done that the bike industry would be in a better place today, and companies wouldn’t be trying to save money by producing hookless rims.

I also wonder if I was wrong about e-bikes. In 2018 I said the city should stop cracking down on them. Well, I’m not saying the cackdown wasn’t misguided necessarily, but I am saying it’s 2024, e-bikes are now burning down the city, and somehow the solution to that is publicly-funded charging hubs:

I’m not sure how this addresses of substandard e-bike batteries immolating people in the night, but I do wonder if it’s prolonging a problem that might otherwise just sort itself out:

I hate motor scooters when they’re in the bike lane and on the sidewalk, but I think they’re fantastic when ridden in the street where they belong. So if delivery people are shifting to them then maybe that fixes everything. Think about it:

  • They buy gas-powered scooters, which are practical for deliveries as well as for personal use
  • They register them with the DMV*
  • They ride them in the street where they belong**
  • The increased number of motor scooters has an overall safety-in-numbers effect since New York City motor vehicle traffic will no longer be dominated by cars
  • The end

*[Yes, that requires effective enforcement.]

**[Yes, that also requires effective enforcement.]

Problem solved.***

***[Assuming there’s effective enforcement, so…okay, fine problem not solved.]

Sadly, in the meantime, they’ll keep propping up e-bikes for commercial use on the basis that they’re going to save the planet and we’ll all have to sidestep battery storage lockers:

I know, I know, “What about gas stations?”

Well, at least I can wash my bike at a gas station:



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