Headquarters for the Slender Fungus Cycling Association

Headquarters for the Slender Fungus Cycling Association
Brewers of Hardy Rides.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


These guy are way up in my list. 
Watch the video and let me know what you think.


Sunday, March 24, 2013

Sunday Riding 3/24/13

As per usual I worked my second job at the restaurant on Saturday and got home around 11:30 p.m. While the girls were wrapping up SNL I started to get all my stuff ready. I wanted to get up in the middle of the night and be out the door. I had watched the weather report and it called for a pretty ugly day. Freezing temps, snow, and a 20mph wind. 
I figured that it beats riding indoors any day. So I had the bibs, wind tights, lake boots, wool socks, Patagonia baselayer, Cars R Coffins jersey, patagonia balaclava, wool hat, helmet and two pairs of gloves. I figured to give the Chili a good go. 
The phone that B.K gave me served as my alarm and I jumped out of bed at 4 am. I had coffee and two slices of toast with Butter and jam. 
I dressed quickly, grabbed the bike and I was rolling by 4:40 am. There was nobody on the road. I noticed the wind already coming out of Northeast, East. I was heading west. I pedaled the 54" gear with my new Giant Cross tires. Soon I was on Warrenville. My toes started to get numb and that annoyed me. I complained about wearing only one pair of socks. 
At 7:02 am I arrived in St. Charles and the Bonk King was already there. His other name is Mr. Dependability. We rolled on the Great Western Trail and quickly reached Zone 3.2 while trying to keep balance on some funky ice spots. The bikes were all over the place and we opted to ride the road. 
At this point these old geezers did not need any broken bones. We hopped back on the trail once we saw that it was clear. We reached Sycamore and I noticed a 45 mile mark on my computer. I quickly realized I would ride back home with a headwind all the way. I rode back about 15 miles with Bonk King and then I was on my own. I severely envied his Ford Exploder as the engine warmed up the cabin. 
I rolled and rolled. I took side roads, trails and tried to avoid the open areas. The wind would gust and bring me to a standstill. I would continue pedaling only to get stopped again by another gust. I took some gels and I drank what I thought was enough. 
About 5 miles from home I hit the wall full on. I progressively got slower and just wanted to nap under some evergreens. I hated my bike and my whole body became sore. I remembered and oasis called Starbucks. My sister in law works there and I decided to get some calories. I inhaled a grande hot chocolate and a cheese danish. 
I guickly remounted and got home. I was fried and got all crampy. I drank tons of liquid and loaded up on some pretzels to stop the cramps. I think the wind just killed me. I think riding alone killed me. I think I did not drink enough, despite it being cold, and became dehydrated. I was glad to hit the 90 mile mark on my low geared singlespeed. I did a ton of spinning and my legs felt good. I really love the Thudbuster seatpost. It took all the sting out of the bumps on the gravel. When I took my boots off my big toes were purple. Can you get frostbite in March. I guess you can. 
Now if only it would get a bit warmer. 

That would be nice, 

The Bonk King and Snot Face

The trail was challenging to say the least. 

Some parts were impassable. 

Friday, March 22, 2013

Chili rebuild

Salsa Chili con Crosso, Reynolds 
Carbon fork

Square Taper cranks from Good Friend B.K Syracuse, NY

White Industries Eno with Velocity Rim

All City Gonzo SAddle, Thudbuster, Salsa Clamp. All stuff that really works.

Cane Cree 110 headset, Thomson, Nitto Noodle Bars

Mafac Brakes , Mavic front hub, Mavic Open 4cd. Road tires for now.

Dura Ace levers, Lizard Skins DSP tape.

CAteye Strada computer, Thomson and Princeton Tec Eos,. Three great products.

Dia Compe 987  brakes with Koostop Salmone pads
Now I will get two more bikes ready for TI and then according to the weather I will pick my beast. Old cateye computers interfere with some lights. Or better said the lights interfere with function of computer. The cateye micro wireless uses the same technology as the old one. The new strada digitals are the way to go. My front chainring is a surly 32 tooth with a 16 tooth in back This gives me about 54 inches of gearing. Low enough for hills and good enough to roll on flats. 
Next TI bike coming soon. 
Thanks to B.K. for the cranks and Dave for the seatpost. 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Wisconsin Winter Riding

You are no Match........................

Is this the image we were looking for?
A while back we at the SFCA were talking about road conditions in Iowa. I remember riding TIV4 out of Decorah. I was riding a Michilen file tread front tire in 30mm width with a 32mm Ritchey Speedmax. I remember a lot of the gravel was smooth, kinda like a rails to trails. Whenever we had a tailwind my tires would just rip. 
Nowadays the winters have been crazy. Some years no snow, others with mild temps. So, the counties have spread the love with massive truckloads of fresh chunky gravel. I guess if there is no snow, then there is no plowing. 
I assume counties lose budget money and that is why they decide to "fill in" certain roads. I believe the days of skinny tires for gravel are gone. Cookie and I sported 29ers in our last trips to Iowa last year. They came in handy and we still got pretty rattled up on some roads. Heck, on some roads I could not keep a straight line. 
I am just guessing that cross bikes that will have a double purpose as gravel bikes will have to think about clearances. The Surly Crosscheck comes to mind. Also the Black Moutain Cycles Cross bike. My new Gunnar Prototype also clears huge tires. 
These tires will help keep the rider in control. It will also give comfort in the long rides and prevent fatigue. 
Some people are also taking their 29ers and equipping them with narrower tires. This offers tons of clearance for mud and keeps the rolling resistance down. I think that manufacturers will continue to see the need for widers cross tires. The size I am looking for is 700x40, 700x42, 700x44. 
In the picture above I was riding a narrow WTB  tire on that chunky gravel around Gumby's house and it was nearly impossible to ride a mile. 
This is a situation that we encountered last year in Trans Iowa. It had nearly not snowed a lot so the crews spread chunky gravel to stay employed. Eventually the cars, trucks, and farming equipment presses this gravel down and it smooths out . While it is still fresh in the spring it will rattle your fake molars out. 
Just saying, 

Monday, March 18, 2013

Sunday Riding

Sunday was an early rise to take the 60 mile drive up to Woodstock. I was being a hypocrite since I was wearing my Cars R Coffins jersey. I awoke at 5 am and had everything organized and ready to go. I met Cookie, Bonk King and some of the riders of that area in the downtown Woodstock area. We headed north to where the wind and colder temps were. We ended up making it to Wisconsin and going all around Lake Geneva, which was frozen, complete with ice boats and ice fishing. Why did we go there? Anyway, I go in 65 miles, David, our new Trans Iowa buddy got 77 on his 29er and Cookie clocked the coveted Hundo on his Prototype Gunnar Single Speed. A great day was had amongst some great people. I just wish it would warm up just a bit. 

Keep on truckin' 

The early on Group. Some riders had to flip early

My pal Cookie riding really nice. Check out Lake Geneva, completely frozen. 

Cookie and David on the green Mariachi, Cookie on Green Gunnar and I on green Chili Salsa

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Spring Training in March

Last year I was riding my bike in upstate New York. We were experiencing another freak weather pattern with no snow. So there I was in winter riding my fix gear bike with skinnies. This year I am in the Chicagoland and I was riding my Road bike in January piling on the miles. I blew February into the trash compactor with an incredible sinus infection. 
So, back on the bike in March to find snow, ice,  more ice frigid temps and a nasty wind out of the North. It truly has not been easy but being a biker in the midwest is no piece of cake. I guess if you have money you go to Arizona or California and take up a training camp. In the case of the Fungus we stay here and we duke it out. 
My mileage for Trans Iowa is less than stellar so far. I think I have enough fitness to find a fighting chance. I will be changing some things with diet and bike setup. 
This weekend it will not rain and be in the balmy 40's , so there is a chance I will meet my dudes for a cruise. Hopefully we will be blessed with good weather for the TI and that will make a huge difference. More time on the fixed gear to wake up the legs. Currently pushing 42x15 on the steamroller with riser bars. Yesterday I lost the head for my cateye strada double wireless. I was really liking this computer since I can measure my cadence. I am also working out a knot in my left calf. 
Got to go, 

Monday, March 11, 2013

Sunday Riding

Showed up at meeting point around 6:40 and just watched the darkness and water pound the car. I was pretty sure nobody would show up. I was kinda hoping noboby would show up. It was in the 30's and raining kinda hard. So, of course the Bonk King showed up and was amped to go. Then T.J. (our new PaPa), showed up and I thought he was still sleeping. So, we saddled up and rode in complete misery weather. After a while I was warming up but started to feel the water infiltrate my covers and boots. Nothing really stops the water. I had decided to ride my steamroller and get some fixed gear miles to wake up my dormant legs. Bonk King was aboard his Salsa and T.J. on the All City spacewhore. So, it was a QBP type of morning. We rode 23 miles and I was happy with the effort. We did campton hills rd and it felt like a baseball bat hitting me. The rest of the day was spent going in and out of Zombie state. It did not help that it was daylight savings. Thanks to my comrades for coming out. Of course later on that morning it stop raining for a good while. Lucky those that did not ride early morning. 


Monday, March 4, 2013

On the road again.

This past Sunday I was finally back on the bike. Saturday was a double shift at my new job and I got really tired. I bounced out of bed at 530 am on Sunday and soon rolled out west to meet the Bonk King at our undisclosed location. It was bitterly cold for a March morning but nothing was going to deter me from getting in a ride. 
The antibiotics seemed to have done the job of keeping my lungs clear. We rolled slow to start and I noticed how much fitness had been vanished. Towards the end of our 25 mile ride I was feeling good. Now is time to recover miles and start getting ready. Thanks to the Bonk King for coming out and riding. I really liked the loop we did and hope to meet up soon for more. This week we are supposed to get another dumping of snow. Maybe we will have to bust out the snow shoes. At this point whatever happens, happens. I hope you are out there riding. There are many exciting things going to happen this year. 
It was a cold and chilly morning. Bonk King in full Ninja Regalia, including Vans. 

I tired of the digital music over and over again. I resucitated our old radio that was up in the attic in the shop.
Now we listen to stations and sometimes real people talk. Wow!!

Friday, March 1, 2013

Thanks Cookie

A long time ago I received this canvas print from my loyal training partner Cookie. I was finally able to get it frame properly. I can't wait to find the right spot for it. 
thanks again,