Nov 26, 2014

New Brand Announcement - Raleigh Bicycles

From their website -

"With more than a century of cycling heritage under its wheels, Raleigh Bicycles is one of the most well-respected bicycle brands in the world. Raleigh offers a broad spectrum of bicycles including road, urban, cyclocross, and commuter for all ages and abilities."

We are very excited to now have Raleigh Bicycles in our stable of great bicycle brands.  There have been quite a few big changes with this historic company over the last few years resulting in a great range of bikes that are value-packed.

Below are a couple of models we will be offering this season.  We'll have more then just these models, we just think these are some of the standouts in the line -

Alysa i8 - Women looking for the perfect commuter, charity ride, or errands bike but with a little bit more zip? The Alysa range of bikes may be the perfect bike for you. 4 models to choose from.

If there was a bike category called "the ultimate commuter" the Cadent i8 would most definitely be a contender. 8-speed IGH, hydraulic disc brakes, belt drive, chainguard, room for fenders and racks. See what I mean?

Commuting? Check. Weekend bike touring? Check. Charity ride ripper? Check. If you partake in any of these bike activities, the Clubman Disc deserves your attention.

Urban work horse. Well suited on city streets and local shale trails. When looking for a bike that yearns for some trail time as much as it does being abused by potholes, you’ve found the Misceo and Mesika.

Perhaps our favorite bike in the line. Heritage steel frameset, upright riding position, 12-pack rack out front, custom painted fenders to match, and full Shimano drivetrain creates a signature style with plenty of speed. This bike oozes versatility.

Our first batch of bikes has landed.  If you are looking for a new commuter, city, touring, or fixie, do yourself a favour and come test ride a Raleigh - you will be impressed!

Nov 4, 2014

Italians Seem To Like It Low, Low, Low.

We had the incredible opportunity to enjoy the 2014 edition of L'Eroica and afterwards hung around Italy for a couple weeks of sightseeing and holidaying.

We visted Florence, Venice (Mira), La Spezia/Portovenere/Cinque Terre, and of course, Tuscany, including Siena and Gaiole.

Straight way we noticed what people were riding and quite often, maybe most often, we watched people cycling slowly on low quality bikes, with obviously low tire pressure, and saddles that were far too low for efficient cycling.


It's just a bicycle being used the way bikes are meant to be used.

So many "beater" bikes in Florence. Really, everyone had a rough looking bike.

Low tire pressure, seat way to low for such a tall gal. None of that mattered as she cruised through the square.

His blue blazer caught my eye, then noticed his low rear tire pressure. Double bags of goods on the handlebars gets +2.

I heard his spokes vibrate as his rim hit the edges of the paving stones. And he should raise his seat up a foot or so too, or stop riding his younger siblings bike.

Classic. My rear tire is flat and I don't give a shit.

I mean, really bud, how low do you need to go? On the flipside, those are some sweet sneaks.

Double flat tires, rattling fender, handlebars laden with bags...normal sight in Florence.

Missing fender parts, low quality lock, creaking everything, low air pressure, and far to small for the rider.
Watching people riding bikes for utility in Italy was really interesting. Most often, the bikes were rough looking, cheap even, often comparable to mass-market bikes you'd see at Canadian Tire or Sport Chek. Often equipped with a very inexpensive chain or cable lock, singlespeed, rattling fenders and racks - they just rolled about their cities, getting things done.

Many people had kids seats mounted to their rides as well. What was interesting was (again) the low quality nature of these kids seats. They were very simple designs but did the trick - transporting the little ones to school or daycare.

Remembering back to our visits of Paris and Amsterdam in the summer of 2013 I recall seeing many rough looking, aka low quality bikes everywhere - which begs the question: can we determine whether a city has an established bicycle culture by the quality, and numbers, of bikes we see?