the wheels on the bike go round and round....

It's been a bikey 24 hours. Last night I took the crapbag yellow bike to Freewheel because its headset was totally shot, and in fact was SO loose -- how loose was it? -- it was SO loose that when I did the loose-headset test, the one where you squeeze your front brake and rock the bike back and forth, the fork actually moved. Visibly. Now, I wasn't actually sure if it was physically possible for a headset to be THAT loose, even this one that works itself loose once every three rides, so when I walked in I said: "Okay, so I hope I'm only going to have you tighten my headset, but before you do that I want you to look at this and tell me if my fork is broken." I did the brake-squeezy headset test. Patrick (can I use his name without permission? It's free publicity, right?) snatched the bike out of my hands, hollering "DO NOT RIDE THIS!" It was all very dramatic.

But I was dead set on being at the ride this morning, so Patrick dug up a cheap replacement fork and took out the old one. Apparently in 12 years of wrenching, my fork is only the second one that he's seen fail in this particular way. He's also one of the ones that dealt with the GT when it cracked, and so he pointed out that I was probably eligible for some sort of award for the sheer number of broken bikes I've dragged in there this year.

My new fork is CHROME. Yeah, a yellow bike with a chrome fork. It's hilarious.

After I got home, Andy came over to take a look at the Pepsi bike, since he was crazy enough to volunteer to help me with it. He spent most of the time laughing. As I may have pointed out before, PepsiCo was actually giving these bikes away to their employees, and that was right around when I was born, so this is not exactly a top-of-the-line piece of equipment we're talking about here. Never was. So not only does it have the aforementioned evil BMX bottom bracket, it also has 26" wheels and (no shit) 90mm front hub spacing. Is there even such thing as a 90mm front hub? So now my options are either to keep the front wheel I have, meaning that if I want a flip-flop hub in back I'll have to get a custom 26" flip-flop wheel built for me, OR, I can (and this is all Andy's idea, just for the record) take it to Freewheel and tell them to spread the front fork to accommodate a normal 100mm hub. Andy's advice is to "ignore whatever they tell you about 'safety' and just tell 'em to do it." And you should have heard the contempt dripping from his voice when he said the word safety. Given Patrick's remark earlier the same evening about how narrowly I avoided "giving [my] dentist a lot of money," I may concern myself a little more with this "safety" business than Andy suggests. I haven't decided yet. The custom wheel might be more than I want to pay. Then again, as Gilby pointed out, nobody on earth is going to steal my rear wheel because mine would be the only bike in the city that it could be used on.

And then this morning the yellow bike, with its shiny chrome fork, got to go for a cool 55 miles around Lake Minnetonka and back. Sascha wrote about it in detail already, so I'll skip that, but it was a good ride. And I discovered that one other girl I know and two of her friends are also heading down to Hell Week, so while YOU all may be sticks in the proverbial mud, SOME people around here know how to have fun. Minnesota will be well represented.

p.s. if I write really, really long posts, does it make up for them only appearing once a week?

p.p.s. there, Sascha, now the boobies are not at the top of the screen. You're safe.


Blogger Tim Jackson- Masi Guy said...

Is the Pepsi bike done yet?

How 'bout now?

How 'bout now?

How 'bout now?

I can do this for a very long time...

How 'bout now?

1/08/2006 12:05 AM  
Anonymous Stan said...

I broke a fork once. It was a steel bike with a steel fork (hey, it was 1976) and one of the blades cracked about 3/4 of the way across before I noticed it. I was riding it when I noticed a strange creak and that the bike was pulling to the left. Fortunately, I was close to home, so I just walked it home.

1/09/2006 4:05 PM  
Blogger Caloi-Rider said...

Holy flipping cow! A fellow caloi-rider. Do you ever get sick of people calling it a "no-name" bike?
No, I actually ride a Caloi mtb. Green. From 1998. Sturdy bike, though.

1/11/2006 2:24 PM  
Blogger annie said...

Excellent. Welcome to the blog, caloi-rider. And actually nobody has ever called it a no-name bike, although it has been called a "what the heck is that?" and once when I was dropping it at a shop for service the guy was so confused that he just wrote "yellow" in the blank for what brand it was.

Then there are those who have heard of them, from back in the Motorola days when Caloi was sponsoring them but didn't actually make pro-level road bikes (kind of like Huffy sponsoring 7-11, that was a laugh). Those Calois were rebadged Eddy Merckxes, and so I have also heard "oh yeah, Calois, those are actually Merckxes," and I had to laugh because that is SO optimistic. If it were an actual Merckx, I probably wouldn't constantly refer to it as the "crapbag yellow bike."

But, y'know, for all the abuse I heap on it, I am sort of fond of it.

1/11/2006 3:13 PM  
Blogger Caloi-Rider said...

My mtb is solid. That's part of the problem, though. I'd be nuts to try riding more than 30 miles. I'm sure my body would up and fall apart.
Have you been to www.caloi.com lately? They have some cool stuff on there now. I think they're still sponsoring a local Brasil team. I'd love to replace my bike with that Elite 2.7, though. That things looks sweet.
Hey, by the way, no shame on the Caloi. It's one of the oldest bike companies in the world (which explains how you got stuck with one of the oldest bikes in the world). The logo on my bike claims it was started in 1898. Pretty cool.

1/11/2006 5:05 PM  
Blogger Bobster said...


Hi I found you linked to velochimp a blog and noticed you ride a Caloi. Which, from your pet name, sounds like you don't like it.

For me riding a caloi has been a dream come true. I lived in Brazil as a kid and all my friends rode Calois or Monarks and I rode an old clunker cruiser type bike a definitely no name.

The crapbags I have been riding the last couple of years has been really funny. It was a bike from the 80s a Scott Tinley ironman model cromoly job. On one ride we wouldn't let anyone with a bike less than 15 years old ride with us. Anyway the first frame I cracked and the second one the derailleur gave out and chewed up my new alexrim and it was going to cost too much to fix.

My wife says, "oh that won't do we'll need to get you something new" I was in heaven and of course my dream bike was still in the shop. I got a 2004 Pro Road model aluminium Caloi. I've had it for a couple of months now an early Christmas gift and have over 700 miles on it. A bunch of the guys on the Cycle-Logic team ride Calois so it's all good.

I couldn't be happier, and was just wondering how you felt about the road bike? My MTB is a trek and a friend of mine like caloi-rider rides a Caloi MTB.

BTW cyclelogic.com has your exact bike the gt with ksyriums and king headset on it selling for close to a grand.

Anyway it was nice to see another caloi out there.

1/16/2006 8:00 PM  
Blogger annie said...

Hi Bobster. Didn't mean to insult your bike! The yellow bike I have is the same one, the aluminum Pro Road, except (obviously) older. It served me well during the years that it was my primary bike, so no complaints. Heck, it's still serving me well as my winter beater, broken fork notwithstanding. I only bitch about it because it's a very entry-level bike and isn't really good enough for racing, and compared to my Salsa it's, well.... not so hot. But if you're just riding recreationally and don't mind that it weighs 26 pounds and shifts sluggishly, I'm sure it's fine. Just be sure and maintain it well, that no-name headset it's got tends to loosen up pretty frequently!

Funny how all the Caloi riders are coming out of the woodworks now! Where did you buy yours? I never see them in shops and actually got mine on eBay from some shop in Pennsylvania that had them on closeout.

1/16/2006 8:21 PM  
Blogger Bobster said...

I didn't realize it was an entry level bike. Mine feels lite as a feather, but then I'm coming from an 80's cromoly dinosaur.

I was hoping to get into racing and not have to buy another fancy bike. Well maybe I'll get so ridiculously fast that a sponsor will pick me up and buy my next one and then of course just let me have it.

San Antonio, Tx actually has a Caloi dealer (cycle-logic.net) Alan used to race Calois in MTB racing.

He didn't go with the 2005 lot because of some snafu between Caloi and Campy. They were going to go all campy but it didn't happen. I have no clue what's going on with 2006.

Alan at C-L used to carry Salsas and they were hot, but now is going litespeed and their fancy tri-machines trying to work with the tri crowd.

You gonna come down for hell week? I may not participate this year because our church is supposed to have a mission trip around that time to rebuild a house for a Rita victim that fell through the governmental cracks. We'll see what happens.

Be careful riding in that slush up there. Did I mention that it was in the 60's last week and I went out in my summer togs?!

1/17/2006 5:34 AM  
Blogger Caloi-Rider said...

I've got to say that having checked out the newer Caloi line, I think they've got a pretty good lookin' set of bikes. Their site boasts that some rider got 2nd place on the Pan-Am championship (I believe Jeremiah Bishop won it) on a Caloi Elite 2.7. Smooth-lookin' bike.
Good on y'all for riding Calois.

1/18/2006 5:04 PM  

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