Bike repair

Best pizza cutter in the world!

Pizza in Ohiopyle wilderness voyageursWho doesn’t like pizza and biking in Ohiopyle?! Well maybe not at the same time…but can you believe there is actually a pizza cutter in the shape of a bike? And it actually works.  The gang over at Park Tool are serious about their tools, so you know this is world class, dependable pizza cutter.  And it also is a great smurf bike.  Imagine the laughs and smiles you will get when slicing into your favorite pizza with this fun kitchen accessory.  If you are into miniatures, you can park it in the diorama on your shelf, so you can keep an eye on it.  The pizza cutter has a large diameter, rolls smoothly, and is stainless steel.  It can slice through the toughest terrain and it’s dishwasher safe!  What a great gift for that special biker in your life!
park bike tools wilderness voyageurs  You can grab one of these fun bike pizza cutters at our  Ohiopyle outfitter store or order from our cool online gear store .  Don’t feel like cutting your own pizza?  No worries…we have delicious gourmet pizzas at the Fall’s City Pub!  Spend the day biking on the GAP Trail or Ohiopyle State Park mountain biking trails and then hit the pub for some gourmet pizza!  I tried the veggie pizza with pesto sauce and it is delicious!  Hope to see you on the GAP trail or the pub!

We carry this fun accessory at our Wilderness Voyageurs store!

We are very easy to find in the metropolis of Ohiopyle, located at the north entrance to town:

Wilderness Voyageurs

103 Garrett Street, Ohiopyle PA 15470

800-272-4141

#ohiopyle

#bestpizzacutter

Categories: Bike repair, Gear review, Ohiopyle | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Setting up a mountain bike for the winter

Some people, like Amanda here, set their bikes up for winter by covering them with junk in the corner of the garage. But she also bundles up with a puffy sweater and ski hat before she steps inside to use the computer.

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So the following winter riding tips are for those of us that are hardy enough to type in nothing more than a Zoic Tradesman Riding Flannel ($85, all sizes in stock):

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with elastic cuffs to cut keyboard drafts:

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I’ve had some of my best mountain bike rides in the winter. Knobs dig into the frozen crust through corners, and the trails in Ohiopyle can be as fast as they are in late July. Riding through the last six winters, I’ve picked up a few things to keep myself rolling in relative comfort.

So here are the top-secret secrets.

1. Whiskey in the bottle

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An ounce or two of liquor will keep a bottle from freezing in cold weather. Five or six ounces will make it feel like summer again (activate simulated summer at your own risk.)

2. Catching the crud

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The Crud Catcher ($15) is the best mountain fender I’ve used, and I’ve used many. It attaches to the downtube with a few rubber o-rings, so it’s easy to pull on and off. Never bounces around or gets in the way, and keeps freezing spray out of the face and off the water bottle. Perfect.

I also shelve my suspension fork for the snowy months, and put on rigid one. The suspension fork doesn’t work super well and cold weather, so it isn’t worth it to get the delicate fork seals covered in frozen mud.

3. The light

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The days in winter are too short to risk going out without a light. Priceton Tech’s Push ($49) puts out 100 lumens with three AAA batteries. That’s plenty of light to get home on the road, and enough to carefully negotiate single track. The thumbscrew handle bar mount is secure and easy to remove.

Those are the only changes I make to my bike for the winter season. If you ride gears, it is a good time to try single speeding, but that’s a topic for another post. Otherwise, the mountain bike you ride all summer will work like a peach.

Next post, I’ll share my thoughts on winter riding clothes.

posted by Montana

Categories: Bike repair, Mountain Biking, Ohiopyle, Outdoor Gear | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

Gear Swap and E-cycling in Ohiopyle April 14 at Wilderness Voyageurs

Spring cleaning for your gear

That snow board sitting in the corner you have not used in 2 years,  how about that old MAC SE 30 that is now a paper weight.  This weekend you can get rid of all those dust collectors by showing up at Wilderness Voyageurs in Ohiopyle.  What is a Gearswap you ask?

Bring any and all of the old gear you want, bikes, boats, skis, jackets etc…  Sales are between you and the buyer.  Wilderness Voyageurs just provides the space.

To help make sure that people who need your stuff will show up,  list the items you are bringing.

E-Cycling–  We partner with xxxxxx of Rockwood, Pa to receive all of your computers, tvs,  veg-o-matics. If it’s electronic and you are tired of walking around it throw it in the car and bring it to Ohiopyle.  There are small fees for certain items like TVs and monitors.

Bike Fitting  Matt Thomas, a professional bike fitter will be doing free custom fittings.  Have a nagging pain in your back after riding?  A few adjustments to your bike could make that pain disappear.

The swap is from 10 to 4 at Wilderness Voyageurs, 103 Garrett St, Ohiopyle PA 15470

Driving directions to Wilderness Voyageurs

If you have questions, feel free to call us at 800-272-4141.

Categories: Bike repair, Ohiopyle, Outdoor Gear | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Building a better guide bike

A good town bike for the guides needs to do three things:

1: Be mechanically sound enough to make trips from the store to town all day.

2: Keep employees off of our nice Cannondale Comfort rental bikes.

3: Survive drunken crashes.

With those things in mind, I grabbed a can of truck-bed liner:

And used it to hose down an old cruiser frame. The bedliner should keep the frame from rusting, and be durable enough to be dropped on the concrete porch at the store..

Since the bike is going to be left outside in rainy Ohiopyle all summer, I used a KMC Rustbuster chain. I’m not sure how much rust it’s going to bust, but it sure looks classy:

After I put the chain on and trued the wheels, it was testing time. Just to make sure everything worked, I locked the coaster brake and threw down some sweet skidz.

Then the coaster brake broke, and the wheel fell off. The skid testing was postponed.

A chain link and a few turns of the wrench later, the bike was ready to shred again. I did some more destructive skids, and nothing exploded. Success.

The dangerously bent fork just makes the handling livelier. It’s a feature, not a problem (until somebody hits the rail road tracks too fast, breaks the fork, and shatters their face.)

posted by Montana

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Pulp Traction

Last Friday I was hanging out in the White House with Zane’s German Shepard (trying to keep her from eating my face), and scanning the rows of old video tapes. Easy Rider, Die Hard 1 through 8, Captain Ron. Then, on the top row, I spotted a Specialized logo.

I jumped out of the cracked vinyl office chair and ran to pick up the box:

Pulp Traction. From 1994. (*not my thumb)

Featuring sexy gripshifting, shameless wide-ons and “boss sounds” by Seal. I started giggling with excitement. I popped the tape in the VCR, propped the little flap open with a q-tip and rewound the tape.

Then the movie began. With a public service announcement, and a man pooping rocks.

The public service message ended and the boss sounds started. Guys with mullets, fanny packs, and white t-shirts started crashing:

And crashing:

Then this chubby guy appeared. He claimed to be riding around the world from Austrailia. He had just ridden down from “Canadoo,” and already pedaled 200,000 miles.

Then an F-16 pilot with a hairy stomach threw a Shark Cruiser:

And a woman with an un-hairy stomach made love to a Shark Cruiser:

After that, the Alien Sprocket Sniffers rode down some bumpy hills:

Canti brakes squealed, back tires were locked, and ruts were carved into the dust.

Then some panties flew:

And a baby was born:

The movie suddenly ended with a phone number. I’m really temped to call it:

It was over too soon. So I watched it two more times. And it was just as awesome the third time.

posted by Montana

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Adjusting V-Brakes

V-brakes are used on almost all hybrid bikes and most older mountain bikes. They’re simple, powerfull and easy to adjust. Here’s how to work on them.

For this job, you’ll need a small philips or flathead screwdriver and a 5mm hex wrench:

The brakes are adjustable at the lever and by the wheel. Start by winding in the barrel adjuster, which is the little threaded thing where the cable enters the lever.

The barrel adjuster is used for quick adjustments while riding. Winding the barrel out pulls the cable tight, which tightens the brakes.

But since we’re going to tightening up the cable by the wheel, screw the barrel back into the lever. This is the starting point.

Now take the hex wrench and loosen the 5mm bolt on top of the brake arm that holds the cable. The cable should slide freely.

Loosen the 5mm bolt that holds the brake pad onto the arm on both sides. Squeeze the arms together, and line the brake pad up with the rim. Re-tighten the bolt. Make sure the pads won’t touch the tire. The pads should be centered and even:

Squeeze both arms of the brake against the rim again. Then pull the cable tight. Let it out just a tiny bit, so that the brake pads no longer touch the rim. Then re-tighten the 5mm bolt.

Grab the screw driver, and look for the little screws at the bottom of the brake arm. These adjust the tension on the springs  that pull the arms left or right. Tightening the screw will pull the pad away from the rim. Loosening it lets the pad be pulled towards the rim.

Use the screws on each side to center the brakes. There should be an even amount of space between the rim and the pad on both sides.

Spin the wheel. The brakes shouldn’t rub at any point. If the wheel is rubbing in one or two spots when you spin it, it might need to be straightened out, or trued. In that case, just drop it off at the shop.

When you squeeze the lever, it should stop when it’s about parallel with the handlebar:

posted by Montana

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9 Hours of Cranky Monkey Mountain Bike Race Report

After disappointingly small spinach bowl at Bob Evan’s in Lavale, Maryland my friend Don Powers and I drove the Hatchback Miatta into the Rocky Gap State Park. We registered our duo-team, “XXC Mag Presents the Crusty Seamen” (it’s only funny because we’re not sailors,) and set up camp.

I was too lazy to pack my tent, but since we were going to a mountain bike race I assumed there would be trees by the camping area. I brought my hammock and a tarp and left my tent in Ohiopyle.

Then we walked over to the camping area. There were no trees. I watched in dismay as the rest of the Pittsburgh/Morgantown crew set up their sponsor emblazoned homes for the weekend.

The TOP tent:

The double wide Dynamic PT tent:

The Pro bikes tent:

And finally, the Wilderness Voyageurs tent:

I accessed all my other options, but in the end it looked like my only choice was to sleep under a bench all weekend. That homeless guy that used to ride around my hometown with shopping bags would be proud.

We went out for a warm up lap. The course was rad, it flowed well with some tight turns and tricky roots. The whole 8.5 mile loop only took 39 minutes. After the lap Don, Brad and I drove the fer piece to Cumberland to find some food. Don was willing to settle on some Taco Bell ground-beef- spleen tacos. But Brad and I insisted we push through a crowd of shirtless-teenage-carnival-goers to get real food. Eventually we found a little bar with some decent food where Heffner and Aaron already had a table.

The next morning I wake up with some moisture on my sleeping bag. I crawl out from under my bench. At least I stayed mostly dry. I head over to JR’s tent and beg for some food. He gives me a bagel and some peanut butter. I am pleased.

I make some coffee in my French press and groan. It’s foggy and cold, with light rain. It’s so hard to get excited for a race when it’s raining.

It’s close to the 11:00 start so I take my bike over to the transition area. I carefully back it into the rack so I can yank it out quickly. We’re going to run for about half a mile to split everybody up before the trails. I’m going first, and I’ll do two laps before trading off with Don.

We line up, and Aaron and I do some short sprints to warm up. It feels like I’m back in High School Cross Country.

The promoter raises his hand, “5 seconds… Go!” We run. Some little fire plug dude next to me trips on a blade of grass and falls on his face. I don’t look back, but I’m certain he’s being trampled by 175 pairs of carbon soled shoes. I pull away from the rest of the pack and make it to the bikes ahead of everybody else. I grab my bike.

It dons’t move. Shit. Somebody hooked the nose of my saddle onto the rack. I frantically throw five other bike onto the ground. Other guys make it to the transition area and start riding away. When I finally get my bike untangled, I’m back in 15th.

I sprint and pass as many people as I can before we hit the trails. The first few miles of the course are really tight and twisty, and it gets congested. I pass when I can, but the leaders are way gone. Dammit. I wanted to be out front on this first lap. I could kill who ever hooked my bike in the rack like that.

We turn away from the lake and get some room to pass. I rip by everyone I can and start the only longish climb on the course. I see JPok and one of the DCMtb guys ahead in the distance. I crush it up the hill, pass them and keep going. I made up a lot of time and took the lead, and now I’m going to hold it. I go all out on the rocky descent and start the swoopy lake trails again.
Mountain bike racing wilderness voyageurs
I cross the start/finish area and head out for my second lap. JPok trades off with Nate Anon. I stay ahead of him and keep pinning it. I finish the lap in 35:41 with a little bit of a gap on Nate. That lap stands the rest of the day as the fastest lap of the race.

I give the punch card to Don Powers, and he promptly drops his chain. There goes our lead. Doh. I walk over to the tents, put my feet up, and eat some ho hos. A little over an hour later, Don finishes his second lap and I head back out.

I feel good the first lap, but slow down to 39 minutes on the second. I’m feeling a little beat. We’re holding onto third, but can’t catch up to JPok and Nate or the DC guys. Their lap times are too consistent.

When Don finishes his 6th lap, I go out to finish the race with my 6th and 7th. We’re a few minutes behind the other teams, so I just cruise the laps. I roll into the finish a little after 7:00 pm.

We ended up third in Open Duo, which is pretty damn good for a couple of guys on single speeds. Don did 6 laps, and I did 7 which ended up being about 60 miles. Very solid and fun day.

I wore my finest Canadian Tuxedo on the podium:
Mountain bike racing wilderness voyageurs
After the awards, there was much merrymaking around the campfire. Sadly, Brad was forced to delete all the pictures. I finally crawled back under my bench at 4:00 am. We woke up at 7:00 and went back to Bob Evan’s where Darnell, Sandy, or Beatrice served us breakfast, then drove back to Ohiopyle. I made it to work 15 minutes early. Perfect weekend.

-Montana

Wilderness Voyageurs, 103 Garrett St, Ohiopyle pa 15470

800-272-4141

#mountainbiking

#ohiopyle

Categories: Bike repair, Mountain Biking | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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