27 November, 2013

Biscuits and Treats

by Scott

In the run up to Thanksgiving here at VO HQ, we've gotten some new treats to try out this winter. Touring hubs with disc mounts arrived yesterday, along with some super wide 700C fenders for us to test out on the Camargue.  26" rims for the smaller Camargue test bike arrived as well in the last sample box to get here before the Thanksgiving holiday. With the holiday approaching quickly, I thought a little post about something close to my heart would be appropriate as we head into a time of cold weather and warm drinks.
 Ask anyone here, I'm partial to cookies- (Biscuits to our friends across the pond in the UK and down under in Australia and New Zealand) To me, having a cookie (or two) with a cup of tea (Yorkshire Gold if you're asking for a recommendation) after a ride in the cold is wonderful. I like something plain, nothing fancy. I'm partial to shortbread cookies with tea. I think that the butter, sugar and salt in the shortbread helps with recovery after the ride. When we lived in Australia we got taken in by Tim Tams. Those work well with a post ride tea here in the winter. The chocolate won't melt as it's cool here. We always kept the Tim Tam's in the fridge in the summer months down under.

We'll be closed here at VO this Thursday and Friday for Thanksgiving.  I'm thankful for some time off and lovely folks to ride with. The weather looks good for a ride for most of the holiday, although we'll be looking forward to tea and cookies afterwards.

What is your choice of beverage and treat after a cold winter's ride?

22 November, 2013

Those Crazy Bars are Here

During morning meeting a few months ago, Casey, our engineer, sheepishly passes around a drawing of some weird handlebars and asks if we'd consider making them. Someone (can't remember who) declares them to be "crazy bars." And the name stuck. After testing we found that we all loved them. In fact, the prototypes are still on both mine and Casey's bikes (and we're not giving them back).

These bars are intended for touring on paved and unpaved roads. They are also sweet for gravel grinding. The main section of the bar is pretty wide at 67cm, but it can be cut down easily. This provides good control on rough surfaces and around town. The bullhorn section offers a streamlined position for smoother roads and headwinds. The center portion replicates the top of a drop bar, and placing your hands at the junctions is not unlike riding on the hoods.
The main bar is 22.2mm so MTB grips, levers, and shifters fit. The "horns" are 23.8mm, so road levers - including inverse levers - fit, as do bar-end shifters. Clamp area is 25.4mm.

Crazy Bars are made from 6061 aluminum and are heat treated. Weight is pretty reasonable at around 450gm. Note that these are not intended for mountain bike use, but we will have a heavier version made from thicker-wall tubing for MTBs soon.
The logos on this first production run face the rider. We had intended that they face forward, but this doesn't really matter since most folks will wrap the entire center section. We only had a few cases air shipped, the rest will be here in January.

Thanksgiving Break and Deadlines for International Orders

Velo Orange will be closed Thursday (28 November) and Friday (29 November) for the Thanksgiving holiday. And our staff will dwindle during the early part of the week.

To assure that international orders are packed and processed before we close on Wednesday, we ask that these orders be placed no later than close of business Monday, 25 November. And please watch your email to respond quickly to the shipping notices.

15 November, 2013

Show and Tell

by Igor

We just got back from the Philly Bike Expo and it was a great time. The new convention center was perfect for the expo. It had indoor bike parking, seminar rooms, activities, and excellent location. Close proximity to Reading Terminal Market meant that great food and smells were only a short walk away. Onwards with the photos! Full set here.

Brian Chapman
Royal H
Johnny Coast
Rich Adams with Tall Stack Stem 
Bilenky with Grand Cru Brakes 
Speaking of shows, our good friends at Bike Cafe in Thailand set up a great booth at "A Day Bike Fest 2013". Lots of VO bikes and bits. All photos courtesy of Bike Cafe.

By the way, Chris wants to get a Sprinter style company van for traveling to venues. Here's my quick mockup. 

Original courtesy of wikipedia
We're putting a show schedule for next year. So the tell part: tell where you would like to see us in 2014. Do you have any favorite shows?

13 November, 2013

Frame Bargains

Pass Hunter paint blemish.
We're selling four VO frames that are either prototypes or have a small imperfection. They are "bargain priced". And you do still get the 10% discount on anything you order to build them up (in the same order). Here's what we have; they won't last long:

Also, Grand Cru single speed cranks are back in stock.

12 November, 2013

New Little Doodad

by Igor

We got these nifty 10-tooth alloy jockey wheels. They come with shims to fit many derailleurs. Modern derailleurs use 11-tooth wheels, so it's getting hard to find replacements for vintage derailleurs. The bearings are sealed for a long and smooth life. The through bolt must be smaller than 5.1mm in diameter.

By the way, we also have a Tumblr. Cool pictures of stuff we like.

07 November, 2013

Pass Hunter Frames Are Here

The long awaited Pass Hunter frames arrived yesterday. The Pass Hunter frame is designed for spirited riding on pavement, gravel, or smooth dirt roads. It's like a randonneuse, but with cantilever brakes. The canti brakes allow for wider tires with fenders and more powerful braking. The Pass Hunter is built using slightly lighter tubing than the Polyvalent or Campeur. It has mid-trail geometry and shorter chainstays than our other frames for stable, yet sporty, handling. In addition to randoneuring and pass hunting, the Pass Hunter would make a nice sportiff or a fast credit card tourer.

Pass Hunter build kits are also available.
We also have black Grand Cru sealed bearing headsets.
And we have retro-style wound stainless steel cable housing kits for brake and for shift cables.

06 November, 2013

Heading to the City of Brotherly Love

This coming weekend, November 9th and 10th, the Philly Bike Expo is on and it promises to be bigger and better than before. We'll be there (booths 1010/1009) with a selection of built up bikes- Pass hunter, Campeur, Polyvalent and a Camargue - along with a display of parts and accessories for folks to look at and ask questions.

 A shot of last year's show- courtesy Bina Belinky

The show is in a larger venue this year, The Philadelphia Convention center, so more room to walk about and see all the cool stuff on display, plus, it's right in the heart of Philly. Close to the Reading Public Market and all the other places that make Philly a great place to visit for a weekend.

The show is Saturday 10 to 6 and Sunday 10 to 5.

For more details, go to  www.phillybikeexpo.com

 Hope to see you there.

05 November, 2013

Rinko Headset in Action

Ryan sent over some photos of his new Rinko Headset in action at the "Matsumoto Station is Nagano prefecture after four wonderful days in the Japanese Alps."

01 November, 2013

Lunchtime Passhunting

by Igor

Casey and I took the Passhunters out for a afternoon jaunt around a local park.

Trails were empty except for a few fishermen. Stopped at the water for some Brie, Chianti sausage, baguette, and hydration. Enjoy!