I recently started a part-time job as a sales associate at Chrome Industries, and on my first day I was having a conversation with one of my female coworkers about the lack of fashionable female cycling clothes. She was complaining about how Levi’s Commuter line completely skipped over the female cyclist demographic, only making jeans and jackets for men. As a male this is something that never crossed my mind; since I never look for female cycling clothes, I’ve never noticed the lack there of. Our conversation ended with me giving her a little hope. I told her about a small company out of Toronto that is looking to give women, for the first time, cycling jeans that are fashionable and durable.
RYB Denim has a simple goal: “to design a universal womens fit jean that provides comfort and durability, style and function, and is worth the value that the wearer can appreciate and then some.” Headed by NAH’s own Chandel Bodner and Modifide Bike Polo’s Steve Sal Debus, RYB Denim plans to revolutionize the cycling fashion world in the near future. Currently they’re testing denims to find the perfect mixture for their jeans, and once they do they will be embarking on an Indiegogo crowdsourcing project to help get the line started.
Head over and LIKE the RYB Denim facebook page to stay up to date with all of their latest announcements!
Another crowdsourcing project that should be on female cyclists radar are the Cycling Chamois Panties by Urbanist. Via Kickstarter, Urbanist has been raising money to get these fashionable and practical female cycling panties on the market. They were hoping to raise $25,000 for the project and with 15 days left, they have raised over $46,000. That is nearly double their goal! To find out more info or to donate to the cause, check out the Urbanist Kickstarter page HERE.
Here in the U. S. of A. we are celebrating Labor Day today. Historically it is a day that allows us to reflect on the social and economic achievements of workers in the U.S.A. In our modern era, Labor Day is looked at an a symbolic end of summer and an extra day off work. The retail industry has taken advantage of this extra day off that many workers receive and decided to have a huge day of sales to get all these people to shop on their day off.
Enough of a history lesson, let’s get to the goods! Ben’s Cycle is having a 20% sale today only. As you probably already read on the flier, the sale includes in everything in both Ben’s Cycle and Milwaukee Bicycle Co. stores, except Milwaukee frames and frame sets. Use this 20% to go pick up some Large Mouth heads for your tournament play and some Small Mouth heads for pick up! They are both fantastic heads. While you’re at it, you might as well use this as a chance to try one of their King’s Crown mallet connector system. To get the discount, all you have to do is type in BENSWORK20 into the coupon code section and you’re ready to have a line of new MKE mallets for all your Fall tournaments.
Thanks to Brad Quartuccio (founder of Urban Velo), you can now own an iconic image of bike polo history. He is selling 11 x 17 photos of this photo for only $10 shipped inside the US and $18 shipped internationally. According to Brad, this picture was taken in Philadelphia, PA at the first World Hardcourt Bike Polo Championship. As evident by the many skid marks, 2009 was a time before front brake only or dual-brakes were even in the scope of bike polo imagination.
Pick one up today HERE and maybe you can hunt down 2009 champions, Team Smile, to autograph it for you. Someday when this sport is as bike as Monday Night Football, that signed picture will be worth a bajillion dollars!
One of my favorite characteristics of Sean Ingram, the owner of Fixcraft, is the way he often puts the sport above himself. He puts himself and the company on the line, not to weigh down his pockets but purely to help advance the sport. He has donated loads of money this season to help make live streamed bike polo a standard at major tournaments. He has joined forces with other companies to help bring you the best products, instead of two competing inferior products. Instead of competing with D-Gel for the best bike polo ball, the two companies joined forces to bring us the best bike polo balls we have ever seen. When Fixcraft and Northern Standard were prototyping their polo specific gloves, there was a rumor going around of them joining forces instead of competing against each other; sadly, this never happened. When Sean and Fixcraft wanted to put out a polo specific bike, they joined forces with the most innovative company in the BMX world, Tree. Working together they have been designing the Mutt polo frame, as well as the fork that we saw featured in this month’s Fixcraft Friday deal.
With Sean’s eagerness to work with companies, it was no wonder he was so willing to collaborate Magic Bike Polo. John Hayes, one of the owners of Magic Bike Polo, said he hit up Sean only six weeks ago about a cost effective way to bring the Connect to Europe. For the Connect’s European distribution, they re-branded the Fixcraft Connect as the Magic Connect. The only difference in the European version is that it comes in the patented Magic purple.
John Hayes tells us that with the addition of the Magic Connect to their catalog, they plan to bring back heads similar to their version one Emerald. This means that they will lose the inner mounting lip as it is unnecessary with the Connect system. For those unwilling to pick up a Magic Connect, Hayes says they will keep an Emerald model with the mounting lip. The same can not be said for the Black Magic head; those models are made to be light so they will most likely not run any models with a mounting lip.
We love to see bike polo companies working together and we hope to see more collaborations in the future! We are also happy to see these hitting the European shelves; if you are as well, head over to the Magic Bike Polo store and pick some up.
This article was originally posted on The Assassins’ Bike Polo blog.
The crew at FBM put the hammer down to get us some new polo bike prototypes a few days before the Cascadia Qualifier. We wanted to get as much time in on them before the tournament so we got the frames built up as soon as they arrived. This is the best polo frame and fork that I’ve ridden. As soon as I jumped on the Ballista I was instantly comfortable and my game changed for the better. Mike at the FBM frame shop got in touch with us to ask what we would be interested in having on a polo specific frame set. We gave him some input and they really delivered. Mike and the rest of the guys at FBM have lot of years of experience in frame design and production, it shows in the quality and craftsmanship. FBM is an invested bike company with over a decade of success in BMX. All of their frames are hand made in Johnson City, NY by real people that ride bikes. They are awesome dudes and we are very excited to be representing them in bike polo. It was a great experience to work with Mike and everyone at FBM to develop one of the best frames in bike polo.
The frame and fork are 700c specific with mounting options for front and/or rear linear pull brakes, and a front disc tab.
There are full housing guides on the under side of the top tube for smooth routing from either side of the head tube and to keep the housing tucked out of the way.
The small gusset behind the bottom bracket helps to keep the rear end stiff.
The Ballista is tig welded with 4130 chromoly steel tubes. There will be a few sizes depending on general interest, available through a preorder. The production frames will have custom head badges, new decal designs, and will be available in 2-3 colors.
The Ballista feels really stable at speed, there is no shimmying or speed wobbles. Cornering is smooth and predictable, I’ve had no trouble with diving or jack knifing. The slightly longer wheelbase provides no toe overlap and a firm footing for going shoulder to shoulder. We’ve been giving feedback to FBM to make improvements that may be needed. But what you see here is pretty close to what the finished product will be, possibly a few modifications. The Ballista will go into production sometime this coming winter.
And finally, a few shots of the fork…