Freaky Pretty

My mail carrier rings the doorbell when he has a package for me. It would be within the realm of reasonable behavior to leave the package on top of my mailbox, but he takes the time to ring the bell and wait for me to bound to the door like an oversized puppy. I try very hard not to order things that suck, so every time the bell rings at this time of day I feel ten years younger and I get to the door faster than I do most anything else.

Today was no exception. I had been tipped off by the internets that today should see the arrival of my White Industries pedals from the Milwaukee Cycle Co. None of White Industries, the Milwaukee Cycle Co., the internets nor my friendly mail carrier let me down.

It is easy for me to get worked up about super fine made in America bicycle parts. I don’t get to see that many let alone get my hands on them. These are jewels. I am very happy to have remembered to photograph them for sharing and remembering before I slip the first wrench or touch them down in a corner.

The axles are visible. Turn the threaded end and the portion visible between the bearings turns as does the brass colored adjusting nut on the end. Magic.

I saw these on the internets before NAHBS last year and then saw them at NAHBS in person. I didn’t dare ask to hold them, but others did. I politely looked over their shoulders as they got their oils all over the art.

I have a pair of Lyotard Berthet pedals which these resemble (number 23 in the image below). I have always loved the Lyotards, but they possess none of the CNCed goodness that I associate with made in America bicycle parts. Ever since I held in my hand the blue Tuff Neck stem that was to go on my Redline Proline, I have loved well machined aluminum bicycle parts.

Sad that there aren’t more makers in America. Paul Component Engineering and White Industries do such good work. Phil Wood is legendary. I am so happy that Cook Brothers is back at it (they were closed recently but I searched for them as I wrote this entry and see that they up and running once again). Am I forgetting anyone?

Buy what you can while you can from any of these artisans. Their bits are pricey, but you will never regret any purchase. Each component is stunning to hold, install and use, and they are all very durable and serviceable.

We’ve left the deep freeze. I need to sneak downstairs and carefully install these new pedals on my ANT Light Roadster and make a few laps around the block.

Work off a few extra ounces gained yesterday sampling my friend Perry’s wonderful beer. Is there anything he can’t do exceptionally well?

Later!

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6 responses to “Freaky Pretty

  1. I don’t understand many words of this post, but I just had to say, re: tracking packages: I hate it! J does it obsessively, but for me part of the fun is not knowing when my leggings or cookbook or gadgets are going to arrive. (Why am I even telling you this? Oh, internet + day off…)

    • Ah! The joy of the surprise! I like your style. For me, with ordering stuff anyway, the surprise is already half way ruined because I ordered it and sorta know how long it will take. Not sure why I check (and sort of often like J). Because I can? Because I have run out of things to look at? Too much time!

      Thanks for writing! I hope you have many nice surprises in the near future.

      R

  2. These pedals are ridiculous, Randy! I am thinking of buying new pedals myself, MKS Sylvan Track, but for less than one-tenth the price!

    • These pedals are a perfect example of the law of diminishing returns. I am a perfect example of a person with more money than sense. C’est la vie! I really love them. The Sylvan Track pedals are wonderful. Standard issue on Bridgestone XO-1s, don’t you know! I have those and other MKS pedals on most of my bicycles. Go for it.

  3. I found your blog about a month ago and I am obsessed, except ever since Febr. 1, I keep saying “Let’s see what my friend Randall did today?” And I have to be disappointed by seeing nothing new. Can you stop riding and start writing? 🙂 (By the way, check out my husband’s new bike at http://www.flickr.com/photos/antbikemike/4368518134/in/photostream/)

    • Very kind words. Thank you.

      I love your husband’s new bicycle! Mike is turning out some real stunners for the upcoming shows.

      I haven’t been riding much. Pedaled to the grocery yesterday, but every turn of the pedals was depressing as I had failed to completely clean the chain after a ride in the salt. Rust colored every now stiff link. Foul sounds and clicks transmitted through the cranks reminded me of my mistake every time I weighted a pedal. Turns my stomach when I fail to care properly for anything.

      On Saturday I assembled a really fine compost barrel and filled it with kitchen scraps that I was unable to bury in the frozen earth, but it didn’t occur to me to share that. Finally snowed enough to enjoy one session on cross country skis. Brought my camera, but forgot to insert a memory card before leaving home. No pictures, so no post! Two visits to the disk golf course were very enjoyable, too. Otherwise, just cooking and watching movies. Wings of Desire has been the most memorable movie of late.

      Thanks again for writing. You’ve encouraged me to get back at it. Now I just need to do something, anything, interesting!

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