When the team at Budnitz Bicycles emailed me, asking if I wanted to try out one of their single speed, belt-drive bikes, I respectfully declined, prompting them to offer up their titanium bars and seatpost instead. I’ll be honest, I was pretty amped on how my Icarus looked with those Ritchey drops and there was absolutely nothing wrong with my Thomson post but I decided to give them a try anyway. It’s been a few weeks of riding them, so what’s my consensus?
Honestly, the feel of the bars is distinguishable from an aluminum bar’s stiffness but it’s not blatantly obvious. It takes a few rides to feel it. What makes these most appealing is the shape, perfect for a bike like this: not too racy but not upright like many cruiser or porteur bars. The finish is nice and the bend is elegant. I never was a fan of straight, flat bars. As for the post? I can’t really feel any difference. The clamp is a bit cumbersome but once you set it up, makes a lot of sense. And I really like the simplicity of the design.
Overall, a $170 Ti bar and $150 seat post is out of most of our price ranges but when compared to high-end carbon bars and posts, it’s not that bad, especially if you prefer the feel over carbon. Or in my case, the low-lustre finish. The Budnitz Bicycles Ti Bars and Seatpost definitely changed the look and feel of my Icarus. Only time will tell for how long. Check out some photos in the Gallery.
For the past few months, I’ve been wearing Vans because my DVS x CA DNC Rico’s had finally worn out. And it wasn’t until I put on the new models that I forgot how much I missed these sneakers. They’re comfortable, simple and man, those soles make a world of difference on a track pedal. The overall construction of this year’s release has improved a lot and I’m glad to have them back in my normal rotation. Swoop some here, at Cadence.
This will probably be the simplest review I’ll ever do because this is one of the most straight-forward products I’ve reviewed. When DPow from PDW sent over a Takeout Basket Adventure Edition, I was going to wait on my tourer to be built before putting it on a bike. Then the summer months kept creeping along and I hated having a sweaty camera bag or backpack on for really simple runs. That’s when the comfortable size of this thing just took over. Off went the drops, on went the flat bar and the Takeout Basket. The brackets can be a pain in the ass to assemble if you’re not patient but the whole thing installed in under 5 minutes.
As the name implies, this is not a rack for heavy cargo. It’s a basket meant for small runs *like* takeout. I found it a perfect fit for a six pack of beer, or some simple grocery items. Because the Blaq-built Adventure bag doesn’t have padding, I swapped my ILE Photo Bag in its place for my Hasselblad and 5D. But the tall nature of a roll-top fit a giant bottle of bourbon just fine.
Overall, I’ve been very keen on this basket, mostly because I never know when I’ll have to pick something up without a backpack. It’s come in handy multiple times and I would even consider it on a longer ride to hold my camera. Now, let me just say, sure, there are other options for larger loads. Cetma comes to mind but this isn’t a rack, it’s a basket…
Pick one up in the Adventure Edition here or the standard Takeout Basket here and flip through more shots in the Gallery.
So here’s a factoid you might not have been aware of: Vittoria shoes, the brand, are in fact older than Vittoria tires. Don’t ask me why Vittoria tires decided to take their name but the main point to take away from this is that Vittoria shoes have been around a very long time.
When they re-issued their classic cycling shoes a few years back, people applauded them. The 1976 line was before any other company went for that “vintage look” and Vittoria is one of the few manufacturers that have said experience under their laces. Naturally, when they reached out to me to try out a pair of the 1976 Classic Carbon Road Shoes with a carbon sole, I did and have been riding them for a little longer than a month.
Right out of the box, they’ve proven to be just as comfortable and durable as any modern road shoe and I have yet to critique anything in their design. People complain about the laces but if you’ve been riding long enough, you know how tight or loose you need to have your shoes. I have yet to adjust them on a ride. The leather is incredibly durable and the vented perforations keep your feet cool, even in the Texas summer heat. To boot, they’re made by hand in Italy. In one word: perfetto!
Click on the above photo to launch the gallery, or here to open in a new tab.
So you’ll have to excuse the enthusiastic photos and copy here but since I got my new fork on my Icarus ViKing Track, I’ve been looking for a polished silver, non-grooved 31.8, 44cm wide road bar, but to no avail. Track drops on the street aren’t for me. They never come wide enough and I like having multiple hand positions on the bike while riding.
I couldn’t figure out why it was so hard to find that exact bar. Surely someone else wanted it? It wasn’t until a friend showed me the Ritchey Classic Logic Curve that I thought there even existed such a bar. Minimally branded and all of the above, these bars fit the bike perfectly.
Click on the above photo to launch the gallery, or here to open in a new tab.
It’s been about a month since Eric from ILE sent me one of his new Photo Bag Mini models to test out. Usually, when I’m shooting photos on the go while riding, I’ll just throw the camera around my shoulder and pedal around with it fully exposed. There are plenty of occasions where that might not be a great idea, or maybe you want to carry a flash, some CF cards and other small accessories with you. In those cases, the Photo Bag Mini is perfect.
Or, as I’ve found in recent weeks, it’s great for toting my Hasselblad and a few film backs. Check out more of my thoughts on the ILE Photo Bag Mini below. Click on the above photo to launch the gallery, or here to open in a new tab.
Since PiNP is a one-man show 99.99% of the time, I like to make the quest appearances extra special. I’ve known Kevin Sparrow for some time now. I wouldn’t say we go way back, but in internet time, we’ve been around, doing relatively the same kind of work for a few years. Kevin’s someone I look up to, not only as a photographer, but as a person and a passionate artist. When he and I spoke a few months back about photography, he mentioned he was thinking of ditching his Canon 7D for the Fuji X-Pro1.
I didn’t know what to think but after reading his words and seeing these photos, I can’t blame him! Read on below for one of the most in-depth reviews I’ve ever had on this blog.
Rather than insert his wonderful photos into the body, I’m putting them in a Guest Gallery, so read up below and click here to open up the Photoset in a new tab.
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I can say, without a doubt that I’ve seen every fixed freestyle DVD out there and every time, they just get better. When Zane from Chop Em Down Films first emailed me, expressing an interest to come to Texas with a handful of riders to film for a new video magazine, I was stoked! Over the past few months, I’ve been hearing about him traveling to film with other talent. From Tokyo, to SF, Phoenix, Temecula, Long Beach and Los Angeles, Zane has been there, catching clips for Can’t Fool the Youth Volume 01.
With the premieres still unfolding around the globe, I don’t want to give too much away but I will say this: Can’t Fool the Youth is the most comprehensive fixed freestyle project I’ve seen. It captures all of the talent and even brings some new faces some much-needed exposure. It captures the daily lives of riders and maintains that “feel good” vibe that I enjoy so much. What Zane has pulled together in the first volume only has me more stoked for the second and the third and…
Pick up a copy of Can’t Fool the Youth Volume 01 here at Chop Em Down Films for $25.
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After a catastrophic blowout on my last tire where a beer and pride was lost, I headed out to my shed, La Maison de Fixie to see what tires I had in stock. Resist sent me a box of sample tires some time ago and I had completely forgotten about the 28c Nomads that were in the package. After some finagling, I managed to squeeze one on the Icarus. The tread is rather nice. You can attest to that if you’ve ridden them on your fixed freestyle rig. Skidding is consistent and aside from the blue label (drive side only), the tires are devoid of any flashy branding.
I’ve had these on for about two weeks with no issues but like all tires, the more you skid on them, the more prone you are to punctures. If you get the opportunity to, give them a whirl. Check out more details here, at Resist.
This is the first in a few posts on tires I’ll be making over the next few days, so stay tuned.
Every time I post a photo of these on Instagram, people always ask what they are, thinking they’re some expensive luxury cycling item. The truth is, the Specialized 74 gloves are some of the best gloves I’ve owned and they don’t even scratch the bank account. They’ve held up to daily use, haven’t stretched or loosened up at all and look damn classy. Check out more below.