Shoveling the shiz.

That’s what I do here. I move stuff from one pile, to another and back again. Maybe it will be a pile that someone will find useful, or perhaps not, but as sisyphean an effort is it sometimes is, I will continually come here day in and day out to do it because that’s what I do.

Now then, firstly, and perhaps, most importantly, from Hiroshi Matsumoto of Shimano itself, I received this shebang regarding a new, polished, and supremely limited GRX group, to which I can only say Holy macaroni;

I posted this elsewhere, and of course there were the standard array of nay-sayers, which always confuses me.

Back in the olden times, when Shimano released something new, people were stoked, whether they had any plans to use it or not, because it was always rad.

Maybe you were a died-in-the-wool Campy fan, but you still could nod in approval at whatever Shimano released, because despite the fact that you weren’t gonna ever use it, you knew it was cool.

Now days, anytime Shimano releases anything, people have to pick it apart and show the world how much smarter they are than the engineers who designed it.

When people do this, it tells me two things. They don’t know what they’re talking about, and they haven’t been riding bikes long enough to just be quiet. And maybe as an additional half thing, they’ve been tricked into believing that anything SRAM releases is ever more than an almost fully realized idea.

Anyway, the depicted builds look rad, and though I don’t think the group’s any different than the gun metal/XTR grey, it’s a nod to the polished Ultegra/Dura Ace groups of yesteryear that always sent my short hairs ‘a standing.

And kinda speaking of the GRX group, and drop bar bike riding in general, after three years/two powder coat jobs, a billion tires and brake pads, my GRX/Gravel Alliance Blue Collar bicycle recently got an upgrade in the way of a brand new Whisky fork;

My old ENVE fork was super rad, but the clearance left a bit to be desired, so after scoring the underside of the crown with various bits of mud and debris these last few years, I finally went big and got more room than I could ever use;

In fact, I have a half a mind to stuff a bunch of hotdogs up in there.

Not because I want or need to, but because I can.

Needless to say, I’m more in love with this bike every day, and it’s one I will ride until my shriveled bones extract themselves from my retched form, and take their show on the road.

Moving on to other topics- Last week I was at the Kona Bicycles HQ swapping stories with a couple of friends there, and I began discussing the Shitbike;

Photo by Morgan Meredith.

One of the young bloods in the conversation hadn’t yet heard the legend, so being a fan of maintaining an oral history, I shared with him the bullet points.

I later forwarded him this piece which I originally wrote for The Cycling Independent, and was later published in Adventure Journal.

If you might have missed it, and have a passing interest in the bike that inspired a thousand double takes, well, then here you go;

Photo by Morgan Meredith.

Don’t ever say I never gave you anything that I didn’t already give you two years ago, but as paralyzingly homogenous as the bicycle world consistently (seemingly) strives to be, I feel like maintaining visibility to the stories like this is important. Sometimes occasionally repeating myself is a part of that process.

Moving on to other matters mostly consisting of me keeping my head above water financially for at least another few days- I may have mentioned it previously but this coming weekend I’m taking every single thing from The AHTBM store and will have them all displayed and available at a fun little pop up hosted by Bellingham’s world famous Cabin Tavern;

please swing by have a drink, and slap some hands.

If you are unable, I’m happy to ship you a drink though I can’t guarantee its condition upon arrival.

And kinda speaking of which, I just took a delivery of nearly every Sticker Robot-made sticker I’ve ever done;

If you want some, they’re all currently living in the store.

I also realize the site is totally dragging these days. It’s all a part of rebuilding the e-commerse end of things. It’ll get resolved eventually, but in the meantime, I appreciate your patience.

Finally, I would like to please direct your attention to the newest episode of Revolting;

Like always, I’m just now starting to listen to it, ands so far it’s not terrible.

We talk about bike clothes, and Robot’s dog having horrible breath, and farts, and the standard array of vitally important heavy lifting. I hope that it makes you happier than you were before you started listening to it.

Truly, we do the shiz shoveling so you don’t have to.

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6 Responses to “Shoveling the shiz.”

  1. Naptown Chris June 7, 2022 at 6:37 am #

    Listened to the latest Revolting last night and laughed to the point of tears more than once. It was, as they say, a good’un.

    • JP June 7, 2022 at 10:37 am #

      Yep appreciated it greatly, I can’t believe how well bike shops sell people on the cosplay of needing spandex salt n pepa and 100s of $ of other stuff just to ride.

  2. Dr Sweets June 7, 2022 at 7:00 am #

    I am in accord with you regarding the shiny GRX bits in that it looks and likely works (I have not ridden a bike with it yet) great. As to being a fan of either SRAM or Shimano wares I do not believe it matters. Ride whatever turns you on. However, I became a diehard SRAM fan after becoming annoyed with the vague (some call it smooth) feel of Shimano’s mountain bike shifting in the mid-to late 00’s versus SRAM’s notable hard and obvious “clunk” feel in their shifters which remains to this day. Furthermore, while I think both provide great drivetrain options, SRAM’s move to single ring drivetrains was brilliant, beating out Shimano hands down in that arena. Sure, not all of their executions’ thereof have been great (SX? …meh.), but most work damn well and the simplicity versus a 2X drivetrain is hard to mess with. Again, whatever turns one on. Lastly, as for inexpensive, not too heavy, bang on simple, effective and durable drivetrains no is touching Microshift. Hats off to Kona spec’ing this on their lower cost bikes.

    • Stevil June 7, 2022 at 7:58 am #

      I’m just mad because twice their mountain bike brakes have left me scrambling to figure out a replacement whilst on the ever-so-rare mountain bike vacation. Fool me once, shame on them. Fool me twice, etc… It turns out both times it was a flaw in the design so deuces to them. That said, I have a cross bike spec’d with their 1X stuff, and it’s worked flawlessly. Still though, to my mind, nothing ever will feel as good as Shimano.

      • Dr Sweets June 7, 2022 at 9:09 am #

        I was referring to the respective drivetrains from each company only. Their brake offerings are a different story. It’s common knowledge that SRAM blew it with Elixirs and the Guides were only okay at best. On that note, I never ran Elixirs so I missed all of that nonsense and instead jumped right to Codes. I’ve ran every generation of those since ’05 with no issues and still have them on bikes today. Most won’t run those b/c they weren’t OEM, they were too “heavy” or they were gun shy after the Elixir fiasco. SRAM brake feel/modulation beats Shimano’s stick-in-the-spoke on/off feel for me not to mention Shimano’s annoying and still present wandering bite point problems. However, I just put Hayes Dominions on my main sled and they seem to have the modulation of SRAM’s with the power and reliability of Saints.

  3. Dauber Jenkins June 7, 2022 at 1:41 pm #

    Stevil, I still ride D/A 7800 ’cause it’s gorgeous, I understand the heralding to days gone by. However, when the wait for GRX is getting daily even more absurd, who needs a rare colorway?