Tuesday, January 30, 2007


there's v-brakes under there somewhere

    WOW, what a ride! I thought last weekend ride was muddy but this was insane!

    For the first time, I rode with Mike, Pat, Andy and Lee at 6 Mile. The weather was nice, a sunny 40 degree day with no wind. I was sportin' my fenders again and the same outfit as last weekend because that seemed to work for me.

a major mud dam begins

    As we hit the first section of trail, it became a preview of how the ride was going to be. The mud was as slick as ice and sticky like GU. I thought my fenders would give me an advantage but it only protected my eyes from the flying mud clumps as i rode down any hills.

I know everything seems to blend together, but you understand what's going on here

    I fell twice. I leaned into the slope and when I leaned to far, the front tire would just slide out and down i'd go. The tires got completely clogged to the point where my tire's mud extended a good inch past the tire and the big brown tire looked at least 4" wide.

here's the bike after the ride on the rack

    As you can see from the pictures, it clogged everywhere. I think my bike gained at least 5 pounds of mud. Would I do it again? Sure. Why? Because, I was out riding, first and foremost. Secondly, the mud made me somewhat a better rider, with all the braking and steering that I had to do. And third, I got to ride with new people and share one of favorite NJ riding spots.

happy muddy trails
~dirty bert

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Buying Bike Parts. Wouldja do it?

    eBay does it, so does Craig's List and also MTBR. BUT why not ME!?

    Well I'm interested into, start selling some bike stuff, I figured this would be a great forum to do so. I wouldn't have to pay any fees other than the cut PayPal gets. I just wonder if people would be interested in some of my new and 2nd hand stuff.

    For instance, I got a great Trek full suspension sitting in my garage begging to be ridden. Somewhere on this blog, I have posted pictures of this bike. It's about 4 years old, it hasn't been beaten, I'm far from a huckster, it's been professionally been taken care of, tune-ups regularly and was given lotsa love. What would one wanna pay for something like that? Is it like buying a car, where it depreciates once it leaves the car lot or in this case, once it's been ridden on a trail? Or how about this concept called Trade My Bicycle. Where you trade your bicycle for instant store credit, I like the concept but I just wonder if it will really work. In the condition section of that site, I'd rate the Trek to be in "excellent to excellent plus" condition and it will probably see a tune-up prior to it being sold.

    I may also got some parts for sale. I got a pair of Eggbeaters sitting out in the garage. I tried to use them on 1 ride but I didn't like them and went back to using my Time ATAC carbons. I bought them because they were light and we the latest cool pedal out. I think they are the CrankBrothers Egg Beaters SL. They weight in at 266 grams a pair and that's pretty sweet! I also have Easton 2006 MonkeyLite SL riser bar.

    I will have to look around the garage this weekend to see what else I got to sell, I think I might have tires in there, maybe the Kenda Nevegal 2.1 tire. While yer on that link, check out the size of the outer knobs on the "King of Traction" tire, jeeze i could have used that mud tire last weekend.

    Has anyone had any luck selling outside of those forums mentioned above?

happy trails
~dirty bert

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

My Mud Buddy & Me!

    Wow, what a muddy day. Well I met Jen for a nice, bitter, windy cold ride this past weekend at 6m (aka 6 Mile Run). I arrived late and not only do I do that but lost my disc brake pad in the gravel parking lot. Yea, it was like finding a needle in the haystack. The pad was black and gray and the gravel parking lot was black and gray and to add insult to injury, I think the dam pad floated away in the wind.

    Not to be discouraged from no front brake, I decided to ride anyways and not be denied of this ride wit Jen. Off we go, Me sportin' front and rear fenders, wool socks, over my thermal thighs and a long sleeve coml. shirt tucked into the tights and another warm jersey over that and my heavyweight jersey/jacket over that and under my helmet i was wearing balaclava.

    The trails were muddy, the logs looked wet but you never know if they were actually wet or just iced, either way, my rear tire slid along them. All the mud ruts were frozen, which is always interesting to try to ride in or over them. You always fall a victim of riding in them, hoping the other person before you, picked a good line.

    We got to ride over the new bridge, thank god it was much wider with a nice approach, I walked my bike over it because the snow/ice that formed on it made me second guess myself. On the way home, I did ride it but was so paranoid thinking that I would ride off of it.

    The mud we did find, was thick and heavy, nothing like the soupy kind you find in the summer. This crap stuck like crazy glue to the bike and loved to clog every hole on the bike, I think my bike gained 3 pounds of mud over the 2.5 hrs. we rode. I forgot to spray the underside of my fenders with Pam, you know that "non-stick" cooking spray, the crap wipes off so much easier, try it next time.

Very lil traction in da mud.

Look at the mud nest.

    Well the ride was a lot of fun and we got back to the parking lot in time to see the bow hunter head into the woods. I didn't wipe my bike down in the parking lot, I probably should have, so instead I placed the bike on the roof and the wind, froze the mud onto the bike but not before some mud splattered and froze to car. I got a frozen mud splatter on my roof, back window and on the trunk.

My brown & silver Turner.

    It took me 3 days to clean the bike, along with me doing the dumb thing of washing it outside. The sudsy bubbles on the frame, actually froze, good job, dummy! Anyway it's clean, well kinda of, but I'm dropping it off at the shop tonight for sum repairs. Real quick, one time i didn't clean my bike off, well not that labor intensive as I did this time and the bike shop charged me additionally for cleaning the bike so they could work on it. It sounds crazy but it's true. I don't care about the cold weather, nor the wind or the sno, all I care about is getting back to 6m for more mud madness.

happy trails
~dirty "muddy" bert

Monday, January 15, 2007

It's So Intense!

    I just found this and I wanted to share this with you. This bike looks PHAT! I don't know whether it has to do with the brand, Intense or the fact that the black and silver look HOT or it's a full suspension 29er. I'd be more excited (if that was possible) if this was a 96er.

    It looks like a custom selection for the parts. I see on it Thompson Elite X-4 stem, the red version of Magura Martha SL disc brakes, a Recon Rock Shox, red Salsa skewers, SRAM XO trigger and rear derailuer, a Thompson Masterpiece seatpost, a WTB saddle and a RaceFace crank. A real nice parts selection and if I was to guess how much this bike cost, I'd say $4,750!! I cheated and got it from the Hammerhead bikes website.

    I also found another cool bike product website for custom fenders. It's called, Woody's Custom Fenders. I can't even imagine what it would cost for these fenders. Then again paying 4,750 bucks for a custom bike is a drop in the bucket for sum custom wood fenders!

happy trails
~dirty bert

Friday, January 12, 2007

Riding with Dark Cycles

    I noticed this company, Dark Cycles about a year ago, when someone posted ther bash guard on MTBR.

Here's a close up of what my bash guard looks like.

    The bash guard i got is called Black Guard. Up close it looks SWEET and the CNC engraving is well done. I had never had a bash guard on a bike but it makes a world of a difference for me to get up and over a log pile. No more, chainring digging or scraping over a log. It's makes me into a better rider or less sloppy looking as I cross over the logs.

    As I roamed around thier website I noticed they have a DH bike called, Scarab DH. A cro-moly steel frameset with 8.5" of rear travel and a frame weight (incl. shock) of 11.8 lbs. I'm no DH guy but this bike looks pretty menacing and with 8.5" of travel, it sounds like it has more travel then my civic.

    They also have a hard tail bike called, Supernova. What stood out the most from the picture of the bike was the CNC engraving of the flame dropouts! I gotta say that's pretty phat and original on their part.

    If yer looking for a bash guard, I'd recommend Dark Cycles, Black Guard. You will have to give up yer large chainring but I didn't mind because I rarely used it, so it wasn't a big lose for me. I bought mine at Red Barn Bicycles. Chad was the guy I emailed and eventually call and ordered from. You can email Chad at sales@RedBarnBicycles.com. I'd say mention me when you order but I doubt he'd remember me, since it was so long ago.

happy bashing!
~dirty bert

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Winter Fun!

Here's a photo of what it look liked last winter.

And here's me, minus that sleeveless T but I'm wearing a short sleeve T instead.

Here is a pic of the flesh piercing, tire puncturing, tube poppin' Mercers' thorns.

A new bridge at Mercer, at a differrent angle.

happy trails and warm weather!
~dirty bert

Monday, January 08, 2007

Sun, Mud and Fun!

    Well it didn't take long, but i did it. I broke my 1 of my New Year's resolution by not posting everyday. Thursday was my last post but I did start to create a post for Friday about how nice global warming has been with it extending my riding season. I know it's bad but this season is actually livable on the east coast.

    Well I got to ride the whole weekend. Saturday was insane, we broke a record here, at 73 degrees and I got to wear shorts and a short sleeve jersey. I was planning to ride at 6 Mile but I was warned that it was swampy there and then thought about going to Hartshorne but I didn't want to do the drive and then I thought about Allaire but I hate to ride somewhere, where I'm still completely unfamiliar with the trails, so instead I rode at Mercer.

    The trails were slick, lotsa slippin' and slidin' in that goop. I think I rode for 2.5 hours on Saturday and 1.5 on Sunday. Both days I fell, Saturday I clipped a tree and I tried to correct the direction I was heading after the clip and the tire tire just washed out and down I went. No big deal, I just receive some minor scrapes. On Sunday, I cut the corner to slow and tight and the front tire again, washed out and I fell to the ground but this time my back found a way to smash and scrape down a tree nearby. I'm so thankful that lil tree didn't break like they normally do or otherwise I would have been jabbed in the side with the stump. I also unclipped at a bad moment, where I just got over a log and my left foot unclipped and whipped back around to smash and scraped the back of my leg. Remember the days, where we rode with metal cages and toe straps and yer shoe was wet or the pedal was and you'd slip on the pedal and it would reel around and slap you on the shin! Oh god, there was no other pain like tha in the world!

    I got re-invest in some fenders. I had a pair that snapped on but a lil accident broke them. I saw a pic at the Interbike show, of some company has made inflatible fenders. i really like that idea because you can always carry that in yer camelback. I also like THE fenders. The THE fenders are kinda more fancier and I guess prettier than the ordinary Topeak fenders that I currently run. The "THE" in these fenders stand for "Toby Henderson Enterprise". Here's a lil bit of a background in case yer wondering who the hell is Toby Henderson is.

    I took some pics of when I was riding this past weekend but I need to upload them on my computer. I hate not posting a lil pic along with these ramblings but I will try to get them up, sometime tomorrow.

happy muddy trails!
~dirty bert

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Spinning the Night Away!

    I slacked last month with riding. I think I missed the whole month and it wasn't because of being sick or having to do with the weather but trying and I hate to say it, trying to finish christmas shopping. Work was hectic and on top of that, I got a frantic call from my mother, that she fell and broke her shoulder. So with taking care of her and shopping and working, my bike was buried in the garage under all the boxes of outdoor lights and furniture AND still covered in the dried mud of the month before.

    Within the month of bike slacking, I also neglected going to the gym so I asked santa to bring me a bike trainer. I figured I could spin in my unheated garage amongst the mountains of cardboard boxes while staring at the garage door. I thought it would be fun. I ruled out asking santa for rollers because i thought it wouldn't be fun, careening off the roller and smashing into the garage door or better yet into the beer frig.

    I thought about getting the trainer that ran along the rim like, Minoura's Progressive Rim Drive. It's ideal for mtn bikes so it cuts back on the noise and tire wear. Tire wear!? Like I need something that eats away at my 40 dollar tire. I'd rather have a rock rip the sidewall than this to happen. But I ended up asking santa for Travel Trac Century Fluid Plus trainer (wow, that was a mouthful). My plans were to take my Trek Liquid and put a slick tire on it and spin the night away.

    This never happened. Instead santa got me a much needed Fox Racing Launch knee/shin guards. I now look like a baseball catcher riding a bike. Don't get me wrong, there real nice and will save my knee when i do go back to riding at Chimney Rock. And they look pretty sweet, in a heavy duty fashion.

    Well anyway, I know I got off topic here but I was wondering if anyone uses a trainer and or what brand are they using? Thanks!

Happy Trails!
~dirty bert

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Single Speed Anyone!?

    Have you noticed the sudden population by bicycle companies to make SS and 29er's? Nearly every bike company has a 29er or a single speed. I haven't jumped on the band wagon but I am certainly interested in the concept.

    Going SS would bring me back into my early childhood days, where I rode back and forth in from of my house on my Ross. My Ross was blue with a gigantic banana seat. I'm sure the monster weighted more than my 5" bike now. I remember having blocks on my pedals, to help me reach my pedals.

    This past summer I was trying to decide whether to jump on the bandwagon and build a SS or 29er up or just get a road bike. I figured I'd have more fun customizing a SS/29er than a road bike and still be able to take it off road as well. It would cost a lot less than what I would spend on a road bike. So over the past months I have been thinking about what are my favorite single speed or 29er would be. I also like the idea of having a 29er wheel in the front and a 26" wheel in the back with Avid BB7's. The jury is still out on whether or not, i'd go with a suspension fork. Ok, here are my few choices.

  1. Niner Bikes and i like this model, it's called ONE 9. I like the Godzilla Green, then Tang and then Hot Tamale. There's no price list on the website but I'm sure they don't come as cheap as some of my other choices.
  2. Monoco Flight 29er by Redline. Pea soup green, is the color with Avid BB5's and a rigid fork. That's gotta feel good, while truckin' down a rocky hill. It will be like riding on a jack hammer.
  3. Now I know, I have no chance in buying this bike but it is still sweet looking bike with all the custom details to it. Offroad by Independent Fabrication. I bet this is bike costs close to 2k.
  4. I bet you thought, they were no longer around, but GT is back with their Peace 9r. V-brakes are used and it looks like there's no disc tabs on this bike but I think I'd upgrade to Avid v-brakes and there line of cables as well.
  5. We can't forget about Gary Fisher and his bike called Rig. A lot of cash for a SS/29er, but for $1199 but you get a Reba SL fork and Avid BB7 brakes, it makes it a sweeter bike.
  6. I'd like this bike, the 1FG Ultra by Cannondale even more if it had a Lefty fork and BB7's. I wonder what a Lefty fork would look like with a big 29er wheel on it. Is it possible or was this a dumb question.
  7. Now Trek has a sweet looking SS called 69er. The price scares me but a custom double crown Maverick fork and Juicy 7's, it sounds pretty serious for that root beer color bike.

    I could go on and on and bore you even more but like i said everyday, there seems to be another bike company making a SS or 29er. I also can do what everyone else does and convert an old mtn bike into a SS. I got an old Giant Iguana laying around with Suntour thumb shifters and a crank. It might be even more fun to restore that old bike and maybe even get it repainted. I guess it would be fun to breath life into my old bike that gave me hours of fun, all over again.

Happy Trails
~Dirty Bert

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

New Year's Resolutions

    People tend to make new year's resolutions that there never gonna keep. They do it for a few weeks or even days and then give up. I'm going to try to make some new year's resolutions, that can be attainable. Here are some of my ideas...
  • Try to post everyday. Try is the key word.
  • Make this blog into a RSS feed.
  • I wanna re-ride Ringwood (i haven't been there in 2+ years)
  • I wanna re-ride Huber Woods (i haven't been there in 3+ years)
  • I wanna re-ride Mahalon Dickerson (i haven't been there in 2+ years)
  • I wanna ride Waywayanda (Mmm bear)
  • I wanna re-ride Allamuchy (i haven't been there in 6+ years)
  • I wanna ride Wissahickon, PA
  • I wanna ride Fairmount Park, PA
  • Sell my Trek Liquid.
  • Learn how to maintain my bike.
  • I want a road bike.
  • Clean my garage and make it stop growing cardboard.

  • AND most important, to ride more!

    I think my list is doable, we will see. I'm sure I'll break #1 very quickly.

    I'm thankful and happy that I had so many people visit this blog last year. I don't get a lot of people who comment so it's had to see if anyone is reading it other than my friends. So I started to keep track of how many people came to the blog but I had only tracked it from November to December and reached a total of 539 people.

    I was really interested to see where people viewed this blog. Here's the US breakdown. 24 from California, 20 from NJ, 10 from Wisconsin, 3 from Pennsylvania, 3 from Texas, 3 from Massachusetts and so on. Also here is other countries. 9 from UK, 1 from Australia, 1 from Czech Republic, 1 from Korea, 1 from Netherlands, 1 from Canada and 1 from Finland.

    Anyway, enough of that and let me get back to the important stuff. In the coming blogs, I'll be posting some of bike parts that I'm willing to sell and that trusty new/old Trek will be up for grabs. Some else should love it, like I once did. I'm sure I can find a loving home for it. So who what's it!?!?

happy trails
~dirty bert