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Thread: introduction

  1. #1
    Go, CroMo, go! mtmann's Avatar
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    introduction

    I'm new to the forum. my name is Mike and I'm a Portland native. 46 and riding, seems like, all my life. i commute daily 20 miles rt, mostly flat, all weather. My commuter bike has been a Specialized Allez Epic - screwed-and-glued old school carbon fiber with aluminum (i think) lugs and steel dropouts (I know cause i bent the crap out of my rear hanger a couple years ago overshifting and sticking the chain! Bent back good as new.). it's been a fine bike for the $220 I paid on Craigslist, but we've never really bonded like the Bianchi limited I wore out before (frame is in the basement waiting for a fixie conversion). I'm a steel guy, for sure. I also have a pre-Trek Bontrager Race that doesn't get nearly enough trail time but makes me grin every time I saddle up. I have been thinking about cyclocross off and on for years, ever since the first races in Portland out at Delta Park, but never committed myself and now it's exploding. Still, this fall I'm in as a complete newbie, and I HAVE to now that I bought a new POPRAD! This is my new commuter, fun tour, do everything bike. Still dialing in the fit, but I'm enjoying the heck out of it. First time with disc brakes and I'm thrilled to no longer be grinding my rims.

    Funny/scary story: last week, third day on the bike I hit the lightrail track in light rain and lost it; crashed the new bike! riding right by me was a guy on the most gorgeous bike I have ever seen (the burnt orange Vanilla tourer you can see on Sacha's Vanilla website.) Anyway, embarassed (and sore) as hell, but not a scratch onthe bike. Whew! I think I threw my body under it. Feels lie it. ground down a brake cover and skewer, but that's it. Crossed there hundreds and hundreds of times on the Specialized and never fell. I think maybe the combo of new bike-ness and the intimidating presence of the Vanilla just prostrated me.

    The day i purchased my Poprad, the first NEW bike I've bought in probably 20 years, i bought a second bike, a Nishiki Riviera on ebay for $106 including shipping. Hasn't shown up yet, but I'm psyched to get it. Looks in good condition, classic Japanese lugged tourer, full braze-ons and rack/fender mounts and canti brakes. This is gonna be the family pickup truck, I think; the bike I won't be afraid to grocery shop with and lock up outside the store.

    Future plans/dreams: ride cyclocross this fall, learn to build my own frame someday.

    That's me.

  2. #2
    tired donnamb's Avatar
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    Hi, Mike. Ouch about the tracks. Was that downtown? There are a lot of forums you might enjoy. Of course there's Commuting, but something tells me you'd appreciate Classic and Vintage. Currently Portlanders are needed in Advocacy & Safety to defend our Blue Bike Lanes, but it's not for the faint of heart...

    Anyway, welcome!
    "Real wars of words are harder to win. They require thought, insight, precision, articulation, knowledge, and experience. They require the humility to admit when you are wrong. They recognize that the dialectic is not about making us look at you, but about us all looking together for the truth."

  3. #3
    Lanky Lass East Hill's Avatar
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    Hello Mike, you need to make some plans to stop by and visit us in the Classic & Vintage forum. Our only demand is that you bring photos .

    I have five Nishikis...Prestige, two Sports mixtes, Olympic 12, and the newly acquired International...

    Welcome to BF!

    East Hill
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    TRY EMPATHY & HAVE LOVE IN YOUR HEART, PERHAPS I'LL SEE YOU ON THE ROAD...

  4. #4
    Go, CroMo, go! mtmann's Avatar
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    commute

    Thanks for the advocacy info - it's a pretty hot topic for me. I commute from the Montavilla neighborhood east to east Gresham, and bike lanes out there are pretty crappy. My main route is also, it seems, the main east-west semi truck route past 181st. Springwater Trail is nice but too far out of my way to be practical. My fall was at the 205/Burnside crossing. Kind of tricky because the tracks curve there and you actually have to cut out into traffic if you want to hit them at 90 degrees. Ironically, there was a posting on bikeportland.org that very day about the hazard here, and I had responded to the posting saying it was tricky, have to hit it right, blah, blah, blah...a nd then that evening I fell there. Sheesh.

  5. #5
    Go, CroMo, go! mtmann's Avatar
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    Nishiki

    I'll be making visits to the classic/vintage forum soon enough, and I'll be sure to include pics, as well as geometry info, etc. Actually, I discovered Bike Forums by trying to find info on the Nishiki Riviera GT - there isn't much out there. I had been looking for a little while for an 80's lugged tourer - mostly Trek 520/620/720, but name and quality recognition makes finding them at a deal harder, especially here in P-town. Maybe getting lucky at a thrift store or garage sale... So I started looking into the Japanese bikes and found the Nishiki. Seller on ebay obviously not a bike person, but some pics and size was right. Watched it all week (no bids) and swooped in at last minute - $36, plus a big shipping charge. Funny, I was as excited about this as about the new Poprad. Here's what I do know. It's blue (ones I've seen on net are all maroon), it has the cool Suntour LePree triple rear deraileur, lots of mounts, canti brakes. Didn't see the Kawamura signature, and I think the headtube has the big ugly "N", not the cool crest, but not sure. Any info you can provide on this model - year made, original price, reviews (personal or published) would be very much appreciated. I'm assuming tires will be 27's? This is going to be (I hope) my all around hauler/kid puller/pub crawler, but I can peer into the future and if it's got the tire clearance, maybe a single-speed cyclocross conversion? I'm getting ahead of myself - I haven't actually met the bike yet. Thanks for the response.

    Mike

  6. #6
    Lanky Lass East Hill's Avatar
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    Your Nishiki sounds as if it's an '85 or '86 model. Yes, it probably takes 27 inch tyres. T-Mar is back with us in the Classic & Vintage forum, and he will be able to give you a lot more information than I can.

    Here's a photo of my mixtes, with some of the Nishikis ( the front and last bikes):



    I still don't have a photo of the International, I just got it on Saturday for the Bike Around the Buttes Ride.

    East Hill
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    TRY EMPATHY & HAVE LOVE IN YOUR HEART, PERHAPS I'LL SEE YOU ON THE ROAD...

  7. #7
    bac
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtmann
    I have been thinking about cyclocross off and on for years, ever since the first races in Portland out at Delta Park, but never committed myself and now it's exploding. Still, this fall I'm in as a complete newbie, and I HAVE to now that I bought a new POPRAD! This is my new commuter, fun tour, do everything bike. Still dialing in the fit, but I'm enjoying the heck out of it. First time with disc brakes and I'm thrilled to no longer be grinding my rims.
    Hey Mike. I bought a Salsa Las Cruces cyclocross bike for commuting, and as an all-around do-everything bike. It's not let me down yet! Also, the disc brakes are fantastic. I mounted in-line brake levers on the tops. It's a super-sweet setup for just about any kind of riding.

    Welcome to the fourms, Mike!

    ... Brad

  8. #8
    tired donnamb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtmann
    My fall was at the 205/Burnside crossing. Kind of tricky because the tracks curve there and you actually have to cut out into traffic if you want to hit them at 90 degrees. Ironically, there was a posting on bikeportland.org that very day about the hazard here, and I had responded to the posting saying it was tricky, have to hit it right, blah, blah, blah...a nd then that evening I fell there. Sheesh.
    Oooh, one of the victims of those tracks. Not that this helps you in any way, but I've never heard of anyone taking a fall on those tracks who were running 26" wheels. That said, it's a pretty crappy set-up when you can't run any other wheel size without risking a fall. Personally, I believe no one at Tri-Met ever imagined such a bike boom on the outer east side, and so the crossings are substandard. But, that's just my theory.

    Anyway, A&S could always use some new energy, if you're brave...
    "Real wars of words are harder to win. They require thought, insight, precision, articulation, knowledge, and experience. They require the humility to admit when you are wrong. They recognize that the dialectic is not about making us look at you, but about us all looking together for the truth."

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