Monday, April 30, 2012


Hello Domane
Goodbye Madone
Another huge gap in posts. But really just one day. I skip a day and it feels like forever. Lot going on in my world the last few days. First off, Trek's Domane showed up at the store so it was a race to build and ride. Just like a teenage schoolgirl trying to choose what top to wear ( stole that one from mean guy) I now have a plethora of bikes to ride.
Not really cuz the Madone was presold and is leaving today. Happy owner is pumped. I have no more than 10 rides on that bike.

I decided to go with less green on the Domane and I think I made the right decision. While, to me, green is still the new pink I kinda went overboard on it. I also went with a normal road crank instead of compact. This is the first non compact bike I have since about 2008. It seems fine to me. I have the power.

So whats up with the Domane. First off, its pronounced " Doh Mah Nee". Thats just weird. Im calling it " Doe Mane". That sounds better to me. Easier to say.
I have three rides on the bike and about 100 miles and I like it. If I were crit racing I would stay with the Madone but since I don't, and just group ride and stuff, will prefer the Domane on the long rides.
Not saying its slow. It is not. Same fast responce as a Madone. Close to same weight also. I have not weighed it yet but its very close. Does that iso-thingie work. Yes. Yes it does. As some thought, you can not see it move. Its not a suspension.
 You do not even know its there. What 
I can feel is the edge off all the cracks and potholes. Its noticeable. Its works. For real. You really do get a better ride with no sacrifice in performance. Head tube size is right between H2 and H3 so its perfect for me. Wheel base is just a bit longer than the Madone and I did not notice.

So as Fabian says, it keeps you fresher on the longer rides. So for the way I ride, its a Domane from now on. And yes, its Ultegra Di as the Madone was.
So out go's the Madone and in with the Domane.
Its a 56cm frame. And is available for pre sale. You can have it Oct 1st.

Ride on.


Thursday, April 26, 2012


Thursdays is my ride day. Its a bit cool out. And windy and that means MTB.  And thats not a bad thing as the first race is just over a week away and I might still do it.
I have a few hours of MTBing under my belt this spring but not as much as I thought I would have had before the first race. Last year just before the first race I grabbed the Superfly and rode around the block a few times just to peddle it as the trails were in such poor shape due to the crappy spring.

This year the trails have been game on since early March so one would think I would have been on that bike a bit more. No worries. It all comes back to fitness and weight(for me) and the technical stuff comes back pretty quick. And Im feeling OK on the bike. At least good enough to finish the damn thing. And have fun doing it.

Should be in the woods by 1pm today.

And as I type my Domane came in today. So there's a lot going on here today. So I better get to it if Im going to hit the woods....

More on the Domane tomorrow.


Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The saying go's that the older you get the higher your stem. That's been true for me. If you look here you will notice my bar and seat are just about even. True, I can actually can ride fine with the bar about 2cm's lower and that's most likley what my Domane will be.
But this frame is what Trek calls a H3.
Treks Projects come with 3 different head tube sizes about 20mm apart. This is the highest. And is perfect for the long century rides.
Plus to get the seat to bar ratio you dont need a stem that points to the sky. That just looks dorky on a road bike. So you get a relaxed ride and still look cool.
Thats important.

Put in a good 2 plus hour yesterday. Surprisingly felt good. That is, until I stepped on the scale this morn. This weekend did some damage. And with that I start over again.

But my legs feel good so I didn't completely reset to zero. 

I have been bouncing between the Easton EC90's and the Bonty D3 wheels. Both clinchers. Trying to get a feel of which one is better. It might be like splitting hairs but I will have an opinion on these wheels soon. I can say today they are both awesome.

Today is wheel gluing day. I have been appointed the tubular king of central Wisconsin. I do quite a lot of them. I seem to get most of the wheels from about a 100 square miles around the store. I dont mind. Someone has to do it.
I have a "craft shirt" that's covered in glue. I wised up after ruining too many good tshirts. 
So, its craft day here today. That usually means a little swearing.
I don't swear a lot by nature. But try stretching a fat rubber band around a rim that just seems too big will do that to a guy. Sometimes you just need to get angry to get the job done. Where is mean guy when I need him?

Time to get into the "tubular mindset".


Tuesday, April 24, 2012


Another quality visit to the HP this morn. Sun. Eagles. Cranes.
Soon this place will be bustling with people. And I will lose it for awhile. When the kids get out of school it will be hard pressed to find a place to quietly hang.
I do have new spot picked out tho. Nice view of the lake and the dunes. And only about a 30 yard walk from the car. I tested it out today. It fits fine.

Today I have help coming in the store so Im planning a ride. I really need to ride the Madone as I have not thrown a leg over it for almost 10 days now. And its going to be gone in a few weeks. Along with the new D3 wheels. Need to put some more time on those before they go. That, and its going to be warmer today so thats just a pleasant road ride. Cooler temps later this week will put me in the woods. And thats not a bad thing with the first WORS race coming up an two weeks.
No way will I be ready for that.
Two weeks ago I was on track to be but that fell by the wayside for some reason. Which is par for me. I get in two great weeks of riding, start to feel results and then spend the next two weeks sitting at home and wasting those efforts. I really need to stop that.

Most of the time I need a push. I need to get in the group rides. I cant blow those rides off thinking I'll ride alone the next day. That ride never comes. And I need to plan these rides early cuz I'll get to the store and get involved in some project and neglect the bike. I do that way too much. Soon it will be warmer in the morn and it will be easier to get in a couple hours before the store opens. Since Im old Im up early anyway.

So I'll prep the Madone soon and go.
Me, myself and iPod.


Monday, April 23, 2012

Mini Vacation

Peninsula State Park. Sunday.

As mentioned I took a needed weekend off. I had planned on leaving Friday but my wife had some stuff going on and we did not get to leave until Sat morn. So I ditched the idea of heading farther north and went to Door County instead. Peninsula State Park to be exact.
P-park is really my second HP. And would be my first if it was not a two hour drive away.

I love being there. It was a little chilly in the morn but tons of sunlite was in our favor.
Bike riding was great.  Hiking was cool. Did both this weekend. Im up here about 5 times in a 12 month span. And could do 5 more.

There are a ton of Pileated Woodpeckers in this park. We came upon this tree that they had been working on. They do quite a job. We did not see any but I have in the past.

It was nice to actually not be in the store when it was open and it seemed that I was gone a month when I walked in this morn. Even tho it was only two days.

I have started to take a fancy to hiking and plan on doing more of that this summer. Several hours walking quietly in the woods is very soothing. And its an exorcise that I sure could use more of.

Another gold star on the weekend is the Accent. I could have put the 2 bikes on the hitch rack but wanted to see what kind of mileage I got with two bikes on the roof. I was a little concerned with the engine in these high mileage cars about the size of my lawn mower. But I gatta say it was fine. I held 70mph on the hiway into the wind. It downshifted a bit but handled the extra wind resistance just fine. When all was said and done I got home with about 280 miles on the car and ran 38mpg.
I will still use the hitch rack with anything over a hour away, but I now know the car can handle a few bikes on the roof without imploding.

So I got a later start on this weekend but all in all had a great time.
The downside to this kind of weekend is that I ate a bit too much.
But thats what mini vacations are for.


Friday, April 20, 2012

Not About the Bike.

yesterday around noon
While at the HP today I was thinking about my ride yesterday. Being a store owner I get to ride some pretty expensive bikes. The best ones money can buy. But yesterday I ditched both the Madone (10k) and the Superfly (9k) to ride my 9 year old cross bike ($500.00). 
And loved it.

Boasting a 45 dollar crank, 1X10, miss matched wheels I dug out of the basement. The entire driveline is miss matched. The only carbon is the seatpost and I took that directly off the Pug. This bike has been taken apart, assembled, taken apart only to be assembled and taken apart and assembled again. I love this bike.

You see, Im still a bike rider first and a store owner second (or third). While the store owner in me may brag a little about all the fancy bikes Im riding, the bike rider in me has just as much fun on a old bike such as Pinky.
And when your a bike rider its not about the bike, its about the ride.

I'll take a good ride over a expensive bike any day.

If I'm solo, I'll take a ride on Pinky over any Madone, Superfly or whatever because its not about the money, it about the memories. I have had Pinky for many years. Its the bike I started touring on back in 2008. Having spent 18 days riding it around the State then. Its the first bike I raced cross on in 2007. Having a blast doing that. Its been my winter\comuter bike since when not doing brief stints as a single speed and a road bike.

In continuing the conversation on store owner perks, Im like a alcoholic who owns a bar and gets just as drunk on Milwaukee's Best than some expensive import. That may seem like a strange comparison but this is Wisconsin after all.
Im not here to get rich. Im not here to ride the most expensive bike in the world. Im here just to ride and if I can ride a nice bike now and then so be it. But if I didn't have my Madone or my Domane coming, I would still ride. Just another bike like Pinky.
Memories trump money every time in my book.

Some people ask my why I like riding so much. Is it the social aspect? The racing and going fast? The way you can cover ground so fast either in the woods, road or beach? Its it the fitness aspect? Doing it to stay in shape? Is it the feeling of accomplishment when you had a good race? Or the inner peace of taking a slow spin thru the countryside? I say yes to every one of those. And a few more.

Is it because I own a bike store?
Absolutely not.

I don't care how much you bike costs or where you bought it. Just get out and ride it this weekend.
Do it for real.


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Bad weather forecasts seem to only be half bad. Sometimes they get it wrong for the better. With me staffing the store in overload mode on Thursdays has me putting all my riding eggs in one basket during the week. At least my long ride basket. All day yesterday and into the nite they were all calling for rain and highs in the 40's. I was bummed.
Then, I wake up to sun and already 40 degrees at 7am.
Well then, its game on.
Soon I will take the pretty green bike for a 3 hour ride. Closer to noon.
Its going to be a solo ride.
Me, myself and iPod.
The weather looks to be OK for the weekend up north. But I wont hold my breath.


Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Nice HP visit this morn. I didn't leave until my coffee was completely gone.  I was also contemplating my weekend as its come to pass that Im getting just a slight case of burn out. I believe I have been at the store pretty much every day since the first week of January. Many days over 10 hours. Dont get me wrong, its all good but I just need a break and this weekend a break I will take. This Friday I will jump in my car and drive north. No agenda. No bikes.Just gonna bum around the northern part of the state. Maybe hit every coffee shop I find. Do a little sight seeing. Hit the pool and good restaurants at nite. I cant wait.....

 Yesterday we had the return of the mean guy. If you look at yesterdays post I had to delete his comment. So now my comments are now moderated cuz of this guy. I let it go the first time. Not anymore. There just is no room here for haters.
Secondly, he needs a reality check. I know this may come at a surprise to some, but sometimes I exaggerate a little with this blog.
He mentioned (among other things) that "just sometimes people need to be reminded when they sound like a spoiled teenage girl trying to figure out what top to wear".

 He also went on calling me names such as "douchbag" and others. How rude.
First off Mr Hater, I really dont spend an hour deciding what bike to ride. In fact, right now, there are only three. Madone, Superfly and the Pug. Im pretty sure most of the readers here have more. So as far as "teenage girl tops" I do not have a lot to choose from. And pretty much stick to the pretty green one (Madone) right now.

In the past I would be bothered by this guy but really its no big deal. Its a public blog and everyone is entitled to their opinion. But I dont give haters the time of day. Life is too short for that. Not even sure why he reads this. But the fact that he still does I will take as a compliment.
My long ride day has been changed from Wednesday to Thursdays due to changing employee schedules and I really want to get in at least 4 hours tomorrow. Maybe a combo of road and woods.
That would be nice.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012


Sometimes its hard to decide what bike to ride. 
Considerations are : 
Am I riding alone? How long can I ride? How am I feeling? Whats the temp going to be at the start? Finish?
When's the last time it rained?
Wind direction and speed?
Any special race or event coming up soon?

I take all into consideration and sometimes I can deliberate over an hour to decide what bike I want to ride.
Its sounds like a good problem to have but its kinda tough sometimes when the stable is so big. Its stressful.

Then sometimes, like yesterday, I look around and I take the closest bike to me and that was the Pug.


Monday, April 16, 2012

file foto

The weekend came and gone without any real issues to talk about. Got 4 hours on the bike with two separate rides on Saturday but Sunday was a washout.
I do have a little to write about as I attached the Bonty D3 wheels to my Madone having sold them and wanting to ride them before they go. First impressions were very good as the first 50 miles went well. Hope to get more this week.
I brought the Superfly home Saturday but it never left the garage. A ton of rain fell on and off all day yesterday and Im sure the trails are soaked. I'll stay off them for a few days. The stores sale is still going on even tho the official Trek sale is over. I'll keep it rolling this entire week yet.
I was going thru all my pics of the HP. Hundreds. I always wanted to organize and tag them but never put the time in. Now I need to as Im getting a new computer and will be transferring them over to the new one. Along with my iTunes.
What a pain. But needed as my current unit is acting up and as the commercial says, I dont want to "lose everything".

When I have a weekend day like yesterday, with nothing to do I just feel like crap. In the morning I drove out to the HP twice. Then went to a movie. Saw the "Hunger Games". I now want to read the book. Good movie. I see only about two movies a year so I gatta make them count.
Thats all I have.


Friday, April 13, 2012


Im a self proclaimed wheel freak. I pretty much could care less about the rest of the bike. With the exception of Di2. And over the years I have collected a plethora of fast wheels.

Mostly Eastons but I have had my share of Bontys Aeolus on my demo bikes. I was never a fan of them. In the past they were pretty much a carbon rim with a fairing attached. I thought that was just wrong.
Eastons were then and are still a one piece full carbon wheel. And its not just the road. I have a set of kick ass Eastons on my Superfy too.

My two year old EC90 tubbies are still about the fastest wheel I have ever spun. And the lightest. I also have a set of those on my track bike which has been dormant for over two years now. Shame.
I now have a set of new EC90 clinchers on the Madone and I love them. And they look cool too. But hold on....

Here are the new Bonty Aeolus 5's. Just got them. This changes everything.
I have not spun these wheels yet and they are here waiting for my Domane but in the meantime I put them on my wife's 7.5FX for fun.
They look good on the bike.
My Domane is due the first week of May. I know a ton of dealers have them already but mine is a Project One so it a few more weeks yet.

Bontys new wheel could very well be the fastest clincher yet. Wind tunnel tech has the rim as wide as the tire and it holds that with for the entire 50mm. That fatter rim takes more air out thru the spokes and is not any slower for it cuz your tire has already taken that wind away anyway. Its a 50mm dish that act like a 65mm in that respect. But still acts as only a 50mm when your in a crappy cross wind.
So I cant wait to give these wheels their turn on my bike. Soon.
Just looking around the store, in retail numbers, I have over 11 thousand dollars in wheel sets. My wheels sets, not for sale. All mine.

So yeah, I do like a good set of wheels.
Have a good weekend.


Thursday, April 12, 2012

lunch time.

Had a great ride(s) yesterday. The trails are in mid summer form in April and thats never happened before as long as I can remember. And since the temps are a bit cooler than March the woods is the place to be. Put an hour and a half in our local trail system. Then had planned to grab the Madone for bit of a road ride but plans change and there I was back on the Pug for another beach\woods ride.
Thats the second time on the Pug in 4 days after quite a long time since.
Another hour and three quarter put me a bit over 3 hours and thats the minimum I was looking for.

I am going to be looking for more time on the MTB in the next couple of weeks. Not long before the summer long WORS series starts. And theres always Chequamegon to think about.
Speaking of....
Steve D found a cabin to rent in Hayward. Just out of town, by a lake. Its kinda small but I dont mind. The owner asked why I was there and told him for the bike race and if he knew of it. Not only did he know, he's one of the guys who drives a lead out 4 wheeler so I am hooked up. Might even decide to ditch Interbike and just head up there for a week instead.
Looking forward to September for sure.

Setting up the store for the spring sale today. Thats always a busy day. And busy week to come.
Hope I can find some riding time.....


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Another wonderful morning. Kinda cold but sun negates that. Mornings are most favorite time of the day. Since Im old I go to bed early and wake early. As soon as Im awake I want to get out of the house. Usually within 30 minutes of crawling out of bed.
The morning is my time.
I'll ride or walk on the beach. Getting to the HP at some point obviously. Since the store is open till 7 I lose my nites. Most of them anyway. So all the stuff most people plan on doing after work I need to do in the morning. Kinda like a second shifter.
Soon it will get just a bit warmer and I'll ride early morn. I will love my mornings even more.

Today being Wednesday means its ride day for me. The last 2 Wednesdays have had me on the bike for 4 plus hours and today that might happen again. But today will be kinda cool cuz its going to be 2 hours on the MTB and 2 on the Madone.
Thats a good day.
Do it for real.


Monday, April 9, 2012


Ever have one of those weekends that seem to last a month. Sitting in my HP today had me thinking how almost everyday in my life just runs into each other. And I don't like that much. Its been a long time since I  "did anything".
Even a couple of races a month does wonders for me. A long day riding some farther away trails would do it too. Sure I do get out a lot with my morning routines and bike rides but I need some diversity. And fast.
Saturday had me roll out with the group but flipped to get back to the store sooner than later. But it was almost 50 miles so its all good.
Sunday, after watching the Tom Boonen show I actually jumped on the Pugsly and met Steve D for an hour and a half of beach riding along Mr Michigan.  Saw two eagles. The beach was windless and warm. Sun was out. It was nice to mix it up a little and its been over a month since I rode the fat tires. The four mile road ride home was a bit of a bummer with huge head wind. I always say if you want to train, road ride a Pug. You will get a work out. Watts up, mph down.
In fact Im now riding enuf to lose weight. That's promising. Hope to keep that rolling.
That would be in my best interest.


Friday, April 6, 2012

815am Coffee, sun and beach!

Today I'm one year older and like most people my age do not want to make a big deal of it. Just another day I guess. I scheduled myself in the store from open to close today. No bike ride.
I did spend some time in the HP this morn and since I'm now 52 years old I spent a little more time there in thought. Nothing specific. Just thinking.
I was thinking how weird it is that I have this morning routine of having my coffee almost every morn on the same spot of beach (give or take 100 yards) and if I'm not able to for a few days how it now affects me.

I think everyone needs their own little "thing" and this is mine. And I like it. Soon the kids will be out of school, temps will be up and summer will have me sharing this place and time with others.  I don't really like it but understand. Besides, I have a little spot nobody knows about and use it only when I have to.

A got the Accent racked yesterday. I think it will work out well. As I mentioned, it had four tabs on the roof. Pull off those plastic tabs and it has provisions to hard mount a roof rack that Thule has a fit kit for. Very nice. I'm not sure if I would have put a roof rack on this car if it did not have that.

The two bikes are customers. I offer a pickup and delivery and do that in the morning before the store opens. Just another service nobody else offers here in town.

As much as I will try to have a normal day I know it will not be. I think how strange it is to have people I don't know wish me well on Facebook. While I do participate in the Facebook games, I really am not a fan. Its nice for a few reasons but along with those few nice things carries what I think is a overload of crap. Crap I don't need or want to know about. But I guess I will take the good with the bad in that respect.

So tomorrow I plan on the Saturday group ride. I hope to get in at least 3 hours on the Madone. 
Then to the store for work.
Sunday looks cooler and windy so that's a perfect time to MTB in the woods.
No guarantees but I promise to do my best.
Have a good weekend.


Thursday, April 5, 2012

Going Up?

Easy come, easy go.
My rides have been a bit strange this spring. Those who know me understand my strong dislike for any road that go's up. Being a bigger guy it very painful for me. And its where I get dropped on the group rides. Not the short steep kind cuz I can put in a monster effort for a short time. Its the longer, less steep ones that kill me. One can only hold zone 5 for so long.

Anyway, I put in another 4 hour ride yesterday much like last Wednesday. I rode straight west and within an hour and a half was in western Sheboygan County and climbing the hills of the Kettle Moraine. In the past, I would plan my route around such things but for some reason I feel compelled to head straight to them. Kinda like the lemmings that jump off the cliff.
And climb I do. Hill after hill. HR in hovering in the 170's as I do so. Base miles? My weight does not let me ride base miles.

What a difference in overall ride effort. Ive done a million 4 hour rides but stayed mostly south on flatter roads and felt fine. When I roll in from one of these hill rides I am utterly demolished. Barely making it back to the store. Legs are cooked.
Struggling to get off the bike and walk kind of demolished.
And that's got to good for me. I realize with my weight I will never be good on any hill but maybe just a little bit better based on technique. Will see how long this fascination with hills will last.

And I have to say goodbye to a bike I just got to know. It was only a month ago I pulled my new Madone out of the window and was amazed with the Di2. As always, I got this bike thru Treks awesome demo program. I ride it and sell it at a huge value to some lucky rider. This bike was pre sold almost before I starting riding it. And had planned on a summer of good riding with it but Trek ended it with the new Domane. In less than a month I will receive my demo version of that bike, Di2 of course, and will let the Madone go way sooner that planned. The new owner was pretty pumped to get that phone call to say the least.

So its easy come, easy go for me. Its tough to get acquainted to any one bike in this business. I never have the feeling of ownership.  Its like riding borrowed bikes all the time. I miss the feeling of ownership. To put some small personal trinkets on the the bike. Something that makes others know that its your bike. I cant do much of that anymore.

Its very cool to ride all these high end bikes. I do have fun with that. But its just not the same when they are not yours. But wont complain too much. Somehow I don't think I will get much sympathy from you guys.

And thats fine.


Wednesday, April 4, 2012


Store just got a new team car. 40mpg. Its a bit smaller than the Escape but way more practical. I should save close to $100 bucks a month on gas during the race season. Its going to be racked to the hilt, both roof and hitch. I was pumped to see that the roof has tabs built in for a roof rack. Thats forward thinking. And yes, its going to be wrapped.

Its Wednesday and I have not gotten out yet this week but I have help here in the store today and I will head out around noon for 3 hours in the saddle.
I already have the kit laid out on the office floor so there's no backing out now.

Goona head west and ride the hills.


Tuesday, April 3, 2012



Its been awhile since I could spend some quality time in the HP. Rain came thru a few hours ago but its sunny now. Had my morning coffee with a warm(ish) breeze and some sun on my face. I take the time to appreciate this more when its been a spell since the last time.  As work increases it get harder to get away from the store. Sometimes. It can get easier too. Calling for backup in the store can give me some time away. And if I'm serious about my riding I need to take that time to ride.
So I'm either sleeping, working or riding. That's a tough schedule to keep.

Technically, when the store is too busy for me to handle alone I call for backup. Then, when its slow I hang onto the backup for a bit longer and that's when I get my riding in. But so much of this depends on predicting the weather and the amount of biz the store will do at any given day. I constantly study the weather forecasts to determine when to have someone in to help. I look ahead at the forecasts of three separate services and have them all streaming on my desktop constantly. I pick the best days to bring in help and use that help to allow me to leave for a couple hours for a ride.

I get this scheduling down only about 50% of the time. I was alone in the store yesterday and that was a good call. Today I have help coming in at 3 and I think that was a good call too. I will try to get out on the bike then. But sometimes it does not always work out. I plan this stuff and if its raining at 3, or the store gets crazy busy and have to ditch the bike ( I don't mind that as much as the rain scenario).

So I set up these little windows of ride time well in advance. And hope for the best.
Soon, when the mornings are not so cold and damp I will get in about two hours before the store opens and that I can plan on.
Until then its a shot in the dark when planning my ride time.


Monday, April 2, 2012

File foto taken at 715am om 1/1/2009

My computer is starting to act up. Several reboots per day. My thoughts turn to buying a new one and I just went and looked at all the stuff I have on this thing. A ton of pics. A boatload of music. If I lost them now it would be catastrophic so I'm backing all the pics up to Picasa. And I'm thinking of getting a external hard drive to load up also. Just want to mention that the pic above was not photo shopped in any way. The sun was that yellow.

The weekend did not have a lot of riding in it. I planned to ride before the store opened Saturday but I have lost most of my motivation to ride when the temps are in the 30's. So I bailed on that. I did get to salvage about two and a half hours yesterday on the Madone. I was cold.

One must now make a point to ride west, away from the lake. Its always about 10 degrees cooler along the shores and this is the only thing thats a bummer about living here. This cooler near the lake phenomenon should not be as bad as other springs as the lake is quite a bit warmer due to the warm temps this winter. But a cool wind off the lake is something we put up with here. It also flips the wind direction rule as we are forced to ride with the wind first, then fight the cold lake wind on the way home. We try to put in as much north\south as we can but sooner or later one must ride east, toward the lake to get home. No way around it.

I'll take this spring disadvantage the lake offers cuz its pretty awesome at least 10 out of 12 months. And those are not bad numbers.