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Bike Zoo

We love bikes! What's better than riding in fresh air, stretching our muscles and being in nature? And, if you're looking for the Bike of the Day {BotD}, stay tuned and take a peek around the Bike Zoo while BotD shores up!


(logo by John Bachman)

Members: 30
Latest Activity: Oct 13, 2018

About the Bike Zoo

The Bike Zoo is the place to talk about bicycling topics you love. We'll talk about fixed gears and their simplicity and how not to die on one. We'll discuss bicycle touring. Bill Hannahs is in the picture above, riding his full-tilt Basso in Belgium.

(image from London Cycle Chic)


Are you into artisan bicycles? Who doesn't love crafted bikes? We'll visit Alex of Villin Cycle Works in Gainesville. And, you'll hear about legendary Vanilla Bicycles of Portland, run by Sasha and his faithful poodle. Share your bicycling passions.

Zoobird Brant Haflich (above with his Surly Long Haul Trucker) organizes the SLOBike Kitchen in San Luis Obispo. You'll meet Zach Holford (eventually) who rode his Surly from S. Carolina to Portland, OR in less than three months! That's Zach and Joanna below. Enjoy!

Here's a parting thought:


Discussion Forum

Bike Touring and Bikepacking

Started by Michael Levin Oct 13, 2018. 0 Replies

Boy oh boy, I found the best online group about bike touring and bikepacking. It's on Facebook and it's called...you guessed it...Bike touring and Bikepacking!These guys are serious bike tourers. They aren't into a bunch of malicious talk or much sarcasm, except funny stuff. There are great, inspiring stories about places they go, how they pack, what they ride, all sorts of things from all sorts of places. You'll love it.Have any of you been on some epic rides lately? Gone anywhere via bike and camped? Pickathon was just little while ago outside Portland. It's a popular music fest to cycle to. The Sewanee…Continue

Tags: rivendell, touring, bikezoo, travel, bleriot

Handmade Bikes

Started by Michael Levin. Last reply by Michael Levin Feb 25, 2016. 2 Replies

Like handmade bikes? Who doesn't? This weekend is the Handmade Bike Show in Sacramento, CA (NAHBS)You can go to the NAHBS and see the main bike makers that will be there. Moots, for one, would be of interest to me, because I met a traveller at the Portland Hawthorne Hostel who was riding one and we did a great Swampcast interview. What a cool bike!I've visited with a few handmade bike makers. Lex of Villin Cycles was one. There's a good interview here in the Bike Zoo. Vanilla Cycles is another, in Portland. No interview because his huge poodle wouldn't behave long enough for us to even come in and take a look around! And, Ryan Aulton of 8ABC, now known as Pleasant Cycles is gearing up to make frames. Handmade bikes. What's the attraction?…Continue

Tags: sacramento, ciocc, trek, bicycles, show

Bike of the Day {BotD} ::: frame up build and paint

Started by Michael Levin Jun 18, 2015. 0 Replies

Bike of the Day {BotD} ::: frame up build and paint with flip flop hub and those drop bars. Stylin with speed and function! I hope he calls in "6-8 weeks when it'll be for sale"Continue

Tags: fixed, diy, sick, 6wag, Fixie

Offroad biking in Gainesville, FL - Maps and Photos!

Started by Michael Levin. Last reply by Michael Levin Mar 14, 2015. 1 Reply

If you're looking for places to ride in G'Ville, there's a new website with passion. It's called Eco Agro Trails and G'Ville is featured center stage.New apps like MapMyRide and (favorite) EveryTrail make is easy to map and share your favorite rides. EveryTrail lets you add photos and both are social sites that work on your smart phone.Eco Agro Trails has a collection of offroad rides especially in G'Ville but open to all. Thanks to Bicycle Bob for the link!You can find Eco Agro Trails on the web at https://www.EcoAgroTrails.com and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/EcoAgroTrailsHere's a sample:Gainesville Trail Network 1:…Continue

Tags: off, day, road, eco, trails

Bike of the Day {BotD} ::: Schwinn hybrid

Started by Michael Levin Mar 14, 2015. 0 Replies

Bike of the Day {BotD} ::: Schwinn hybrid. Mr. Ed is 6'4". This large MTB has evolved into a mega comfy commuter. Dave (Bikes n More) re-riveted the Brooks saddle. The brakes are massive cantis. It's a rider! Mr Ed's blog is http://whatssomeoneyourage.blogspot.com/Continue

Tags: hybrid, bicycle, schwinn, zoo, zoobird

Bicycle Commuting in Portland

Started by Michael Levin Jul 22, 2014. 0 Replies

I am here in Portland where commuting by any means is a treat. Bicycle commuting is everywhere. People ride the nicest, most interesting bikes, from old to new. Traffic has a different disposition here in Stumptown. Cars recognize bicyclists and they even stop for pedestrians. Thats confusing unless you're aware of it and ready to take advantage of the politeness.Last time I was here, I bought a bike in advance on cl and rode it while I was here. This time, I'll either rent one or borrow one from a friend. Have any bike stories to share? I'll have a bunch before you know it!Continue

Tags: commuting, bicycles, bikes

A Very Nice Gary Fisher Touring Bike

Started by Michael Levin. Last reply by Chandra Jul 20, 2014. 1 Reply

Win put this Gary Fisher together. Its an American Gary Fisher frame. I think Win said it's an 90's frame.Win built the wheels. His first wheel building project turned out well. He said factory wheels so often don't hold up under heavy loads, so he wanted to remove all doubt and build 'em himself. The handlebars give lots of positions that help you avoid that numbness from keeping your hands in one place for a long time. He has a compass, which he says is incredibly useful, especially in medieval towns where it's easy to get disoriented. He's also got a nice trip computer.Win says he got a good deal on the fenders and they stay in place well.His panniers are Ortlieb brand. Win described how they sometimes don't seat well on the racks. So, he got some rubber automotive fuel line and split it so that it would sit over the racks and provide a less slippery place to hang the…Continue

Tags: portland, hostel, travel, randonneuring, win

Bike of the Day {BotD} ::: Trek 728

Started by Michael Levin Dec 17, 2013. 0 Replies

This beauty is the handywork of Ryan Aulton, one of the proprietors of the fabulous 8th Ave Bikes and Coffee shop in Gainesville, FL.Trek makes some amazing bikes and the 728 is no exception. Ryan spruced it up with wooden fenders, nice racks and saddle, bar end shifters and a powerful headlight.It's a sweetie!Continue

Tags: zoo, bike, touring, zoobird, botd

Bike Grease and Coffee ::: Kurt Sandiforth's Bicycle Tour Round the World

Started by Michael Levin Dec 10, 2013. 0 Replies

Kurt Sandiforth dropped by the Bike Preserve on his way to South America. At first, I was amazed and intrigued by his plans. He had already been in several countries on his fat tired bike.He dropped by several times for coffee and conversation while he was in Gainesville, FL. Kurt made all the bags on his bike, a Surley. He trimmed down his belongings to the bare essentials. He even has a spoon that doubles as a tool.I find myself reading his blog daily. Kurt is an excellent writer and photographer. He loves culture and coffee. He also has a good sense of humor. That's one of his photos above.There are a cadre of bicycle travelers he gets his route info from. Right now, he's in Peru riding down some ancient trails between villages along the Andes.While on a longer than anticipated hiatus from his world bicycle tour, Kurt Sandiforth ended up at Peoples Bicycle in Beacon, NY. In…Continue

Tags: surley, diy, Peru, coffee, preserve

Bicycle Travel with Kurt in Peru (right now!)

Started by Michael Levin Nov 12, 2013. 0 Replies

Kurt's blog is especially good today with photos of biking through Peru. Remind yourself it's a big, fun world out there waiting to be explored:http://www.bikegreaseandcoffee.com/2013/11/this-that-and-andy.html. Photo credit to Kurt's blog for photo above. I took the photo below at www.bikepreserve.comContinue

Tags: surley, dirt, dot, zoobird, peru

Reading list

Comment Wall


You need to be a member of Bike Zoo to add comments!

Comment by Michael Levin on April 10, 2012 at 11:45am

That's a beaut, Tim. Thanks for posting the Centurian photo. I commented here

Comment by Tim Kinney on April 10, 2012 at 11:03am

A buddy of mine recently rebuilt a nice 1987 Centurian Iron Man.  Well, it's spring, and this weekend he took this pic.  I thought I'd share.

Comment by Tim Kinney on February 23, 2012 at 3:32pm

Some of the finest commercial frames being made are from Soma IMHO


They are one of several companies who are bringing back the Mixte frame, which was popular with European bicycle campers back in the 70's and 80's.

Their mixte frame is the Buena Vista and I've wanted one ever since I saw it in a magazine ad.  The price was a little bit above my threashold of pain until Niles got one in Recycled Bikes.  It was for a customer project which fell thru, and Niles gave me a good deal on it. I built it up as a City Bike:

Comment by Tim Kinney on February 23, 2012 at 3:22pm

If any of you bicycle fanatics haven't discovered the Yehuda Moon comic strip by Rick Smith, then, Oh, you must!


Yehuda Moon and Joe run a bike shop in the Shaker Heights area of Cleveland, Ohio.  Yehuda is a commuter style traditionalist and Joe rides racing bikes with lots of lycra and a $200 helmet. Yin and Yang.  Yehuda rides a fictional brand of bicycle they build on frames made by local Shakers, called a Van Sweringen.  If you Google "Van Sweringen Owners Bunch, you'll see pics of reader's "Van Sweringens."  I submitted pics of mine:

Comment by Tim Kinney on February 23, 2012 at 3:10pm

You can make a nice City bike or touring bike out of an old mountain bike from the era when they had a rigid fork (a cheap suspension fork is the spawn of Satan).

I recently repainted and rebuilt and old Trek MTB for my nephew. I painted it in Camaro Gold, which has a dull retro look to it.  Brown decals were clear coated.

Comment by Tim Kinney on February 23, 2012 at 3:04pm

I recently built a fixie on a cheap Chinese frame for commuting.  The idea was to hold down the cost of the initial project, and then when my credit card cooled down, upgrade to a classy track frame. I haven't done the frame upgrade yet.

The grips were meant for a Honda motorcycle, so I had to modify them a bit.

The project started when I got  a great deal on the rims (ebay).  They were 28 hole, so I was the only bidder.  I had some Formula track hubs in 28 h, and once I built the wheels, I had to decide what to put them on.  Like most bike projects, it ended up costing more than I planned.

If you want a nice bike, you can get one at a bike shop and it will cost you at least $600.  But, if you shop carefully for parts and do all the work yourself, you can build the same thing for $3000.  I'm only exaggerating a little bit.

Comment by Tim Kinney on October 14, 2011 at 2:07pm

Hey Pete

I wasn't familiar with the Pelago bicycles, but I like! The headtube lugs on the Antwerp are fantastic.  Do they make them in house, or are those lugs available over there?

BTW, I was riding by another cyclist on the way to work a couple of weeks ago, and when I looked down at his bike, it was a Bob Jackson frame.  The paint was rough, but it was still a beautiful thing.  I guess there must be a few of them around.

Comment by Tim Kinney on July 1, 2011 at 9:34am

That's an interesting take on the story.  Thanks for the link, Chandra!

I'm happy to say, Gainesville is a pretty great place to cycle.  Sure, I've had brats throw soda cans at me, and yell stupid things, occasionally, someone tries to run over me, but we have a lot of nice bike paths and there is usually a road less traveled, to get across town and stay out of traffic.  We also have some local activists who lobby City Council.  One of them is a Council Member.

Hendrix Lives!  ;p)

Comment by Chandra on July 1, 2011 at 1:28am

Nice NY Times article I came across ...

Across Europe, Irking Drivers Is Urban Policy

Comment by Tim Kinney on June 30, 2011 at 11:58am

My memory did not serve well.  The bottom brackets are 100mm not 110mm.

Yeah, Lisa, from Bikes and More rides a casserole and parks it at a bike rack I must walk by.  She does it just to torment me.  She must know I want one!  Beauty paint job and sensible build. I love practical commuter bikes with style!


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