We’ve got a few Daccordi frames hanging around the joint (literally), so we thought we’d do us both a favour and make your custom build that much cheaper.
For those of you who aren’t aware, Daccordi is one of the older Italian bicycle manufacturers, having a 20 year head start over the likes of Colnago, De Rosa, and Pinarello (Bianchi and Willier are older still). Unlike any of these brands, Daccordi are still keeping their bikes Italian in every way, sourcing materials from Italy, and building and painting them at their factory in Tuscany. It’s still family run and as they hand make everything, they can manage truly custom builds.
Below are some of what we have in stock that are going at very attractive prices, so give us a call if you would like to discuss a particular build, or come in to see more of the range.
In our part of the world the temperature is heading south for the winter, and whilst we are still lucky enough to be able to continue riding with relative ease – unlike those with a proper winter – it still presents its problems when it comes to deciding what to wear on the bike.
If you are commuting in plain clothes it may not be as difficult, providing you are not trying to set Strava records on the way there. You will still heat up more than if you were walking and it will still be somewhat more difficult to manage the trade-off between staying warm and keeping free of excess perspiration, but the situation is a little less complicated than when heading out for a more strenuous recreational ride.
There’s cold, there’s wet, and there’s dark.
If you are going to wear the clothes you will be in all day, the first and best thing you can do is to leave enough time for your journey to be undertaken without needing to rush. Seriously, if it is not raining, and you don’t have to rush, you need precisely zero articles of cycle-specific clothing. Sure, throwing some Lycra on under your normal pants will be more comfortable, but at the end of the day you can just grab the bike and go.
Not only is leaving yourself enough time to keep to a moderate pace the solution to being comfortable and not saturated with sweat, but riding at a comfortable pace also makes for a much more pleasant journey. Your stress levels drop considerably, your mood improves, you have more time to make decisions, and you get the opportunity to enjoy the sights and sounds of your surroundings, whatever they may be.
Alright, so let’s say that your journey is long enough or you ride just hard enough to make deciding what to wear a little less straight forward, but you’re still not going to change once you get to work.
First, in any rainy situation, whatever your thoughts on whether mudguards are cool or uncool, they are without a doubt one of the best things you can do to make winter riding more comfortable. They are available in all sizes, for all bikes, but full guards are the best (obviously). If the skies have cleared but the roads have not, you won’t have to worry about puddles or wet and filthy clothes upon arrival, and you can ride with one less care in the world.
Don’t over-dress. Sounds obvious, but I constantly make this mistake because I’m cold in the morning around the house and dress for how I feel there and then, and within minutes of starting out, I’m already too warm. I know this, yet I still do it time after time. I hate being cold…
Warm hands and feet make a big difference to your overall level of comfort. For weather that is beyond merely chilly, get some good gloves that are windproof (we have some really nice ones from German manufacturer Ziener), and possibly waterproof if you want to plan for rain (SealSkinz). Remember that anything waterproof won’t breathe as well as something that isn’t, regardless of its claims. As long as the gloves are warm and the temperatures aren’t too bad, wet hands aren’t a big deal if they are still warm.
Shoe-covers may not be the most fashionable, but toasty feet are wonderful things on a cold morning. There are 3 types of shoe-covers: thin over-socks that are useless if you have warmth in mind (good for protecting your pretty shoes from getting dirty, or if you think you need that little bit more aerodynamics…), insulated but non-waterproof shoe-covers (pretty obvious what they do), and full-on, waterproof, windproof, insulated overshoes. For the later there are varying levels of thicknesses for insulating properties. Again, while the waterproof shoe-covers aren’t usually any more bulky than the non-waterproof ones, they won’t breathe as well, making for some sweatier feet. For those of you that are particularly sensitive to the cold, like me, it’s worth it to have them as warm as possible. We stock one of the worlds best selling waterproof shoe covers, BBB’s Waterflex, which are a good all-around, do everything shoe-cover. For those after a slightly more “pro” look, we have Mavic’s Pro H2O Shoe Cover, which gives a closer fit and is slightly less bulky (less insulated).
If it’s not raining and the temperature won’t be too bad, then a good set of toe warmers will work, will be far less bulky, and your feet won’t overheat. Again, Mavic’s toe warmers are really, really good.
Hot tip: if you are using them over cycling shoes, go for the same size as your shoes. If you want to use them over regular shoes, often the size up is better, as trainers, etc. are a little bulkier. Also bear in mind that if you are not using road cycling shoes (with cleats), then with most of the shoe-covers you will be walking directly on the underside of the covers as they usually only have holes cut out for the cleat and the heel, and they will wear out in time if this is the case. The BBB Waterflex covers are more open on the underside, having only a Velcro strap in the middle (and the toe wraps around to the bottom), making it a little more suitable for regular shoes.
An alternative to shoe-covers would be a waterproof/windproof sock, like the SealSkinz, but obviously your shoes will still be wet if it rains, and they’re not going to be quite as warm.
A final note on shoe-covers is that if it is really raining, eventually water will get in from the top as it runs down your legs, especially if you are wearing socks that are at, or higher than, the tops of the covers. You’ll have somewhat wet feet in this case, but at least they’ll still be warm.
Hands and feet covered, what about the rest?
If you are wearing what you’ll be wearing for the duration of the day (as I do), there’s not much you can do aside from a suitable outer layer. Really, there is nothing special required here. A regular jacket or rain jacket will suffice, but there are advantages to jackets that are cycling-specific, such as a lower-cut back to help protect against spray from the back wheel, reflective elements for low-light situations, better ventilation, often they’ll have longer arms suitable for a riding position, and some will have a closer fit. Netti are a popular and less costly brand – their Elite rain jacket being totally waterproof, very packable, and well priced.
I have found a hood to be extremely useful for the commute in the rain, though it does compromise your shoulder-checking ability a bit. When it’s tipping it down, my hood is up, and my head is dry.
Cycling specific water-proof pants (that you put on over your regular pants) are a little harder to find, but if you combine a waterproof jacket (with hood), waterproof pants, shoe-covers, gloves, and mud-guards, then even the heaviest of downpours isn’t actually that bad! I’ve often arrived home after riding through a deluge and been none the worse for wear. There’s a weird kind of enjoyment I get from a successful commute in the rain, but it’s something I absolutely loath when underprepared…
Now, for harder, longer recreational rides where you are not needing to be presentable for work or pleasure (or if your commute is longer and you can change out of your riding clothes on arrival), it’s a different ballgame, as you have many more options with which to equip yourself against the elements.
The hands and feet situation is the same, so that’s easy.
As you will be working harder and for a longer period of time, you’ll want to manage your moisture build-up as that has a significant effect on staying warm. Start things off with a good base layer. I’ll wear one on all but the warmest days in summer as they are not only comfortable, but do the job of moving sweat away from your skin to evaporate quickly and also provides your initial thermal layer.
There are different weights of base layers, naturally, so you can select the appropriate weight for the temperature range. Wool is a fantastic material as it keeps you warm even when wet, but also doesn’t smell if you have to use it for extended periods between washing. For winter, BBB’s Thermolayer is a synthetic material that has the properties of wool (warm, dry, and fresh), and has a slightly higher neck to keep the breeze out a bit better.
If it’s not too cold, you might just wear a base layer, jersey and arm warmers (or long sleeve jersey), but if it is any cooler, the second most valuable item of clothing to have at your disposal is a good vest (or gilet).
A vest will keep your core warm without overheating you, as a significant factor in losing heat is the amount of air moving over your body at speed – particularly when sweaty. This is achieved by usually having a windproof/water-resistant front panel and a mesh backing, so the wind is kept at bay but excess heat is flung out the back. A gilet also has the advantage of taking up a minimal amount of space in your jersey pocket, making it the perfect companion on days that may start cool but warm up, or rides that include a few longer descents that could benefit from keeping the wind off of your chest. After all, a descent is usually preceded by a climb, and you don’t want to be speeding down a hill with a freshly sweat-soaked jersey pulling all of your heat away from you. Good way to catch a cold. You’ll use it in spring and autumn for sure, and likely throughout (an Australian) winter except for particularly cold days.
When the temperature drops a bit further, a long sleeve jersey lined with fleece is often the answer, though many people opt for a light jacket, of which there are many. There are plenty of lighter outer layers out there now, sitting somewhere in between a long-sleeve jersey and a full on jacket, so you’ll have to find the right balance for your comfortable temperature range (your environment and whether you heat up quickly or not, etc). Long sleeve jerseys will provide a minimal defense against the elements (cold, wind, or rain), fleece jerseys a little warmer, light jackets warmer yet and also usually wind-resistant/windproof, and many of those are showerproof with some sort of DWR treatment on the fabric. All of these will still breathe reasonably well. Our team long-sleeved, fleece lined jerseys have a windproof front that makes them excellent for cool to cold days.
With jackets, especially waterproof ones, there is a greater chance that you will be pulling it off at some point, only to put it back on when you cool off again, particularly if the ride is a hilly one. This is because no matter how breathable something that is waterproof is (or claims to be), whether it is Gore-Tex, eVENT, or any other breathable/waterproof fabric, it’s still not going to allow moisture build-up to evaporate at the rate if would when not wearing a jacket, and still not as close to a non-waterproof one than manufacturers would have you believe. Unless the temperature is cold enough to keep the jacket on for the entire ride, you will probably want to take it off at some point (like a long climb). You may not mind being sweaty – after all, you are exercising and that’s kind of the point – but you will get warm and sweaty if you are peddling at more than a moderate pace. Simply unzipping it will drastically improve things, but there’s still a good chance you’ll want to stow it away completely. Come to terms with this.
You can sometimes end up getting just as wet inside as not wearing one in the rain due to this build-up of perspiration. There is still an advantage though, and that is heat retention. Wet fabric draws heat from your body at something like 25 times more than just air (the faster the air is moving around it the faster that heat disappears), so wearing something that soaks up perspiration and doesn’t move it on very well can have a significant effect on your ability to keep warm. Your base and/or mid layer should be moving this moisture on and may continue to do an admirable job at shifting moisture away from your skin, but that will ultimately get held up by the waterproof jacket. Wet, but at least you’re still warm.
What a good breathable jacket will allow for is a greater ability to move this moisture on while still retaining heat. Technically. You might delay the onset of sweat building up on the inside of the garment a bit, but ultimately you will still get sweaty. Once sweaty, however, a breathable jacket will get rid of it more efficiently than a non-breathable one, so you will dry out faster by comparison.
This is assuming that the jacket has no vents to help with the job of removing moisture, but as we are talking about winter, and I’m assuming a cold temperature, the last thing you will be wanting is a current of cold air running through your clothes. Makes me cold just thinking about it… On the other hand, if you have a couple of very good layers underneath then vents would be useful without dropping your core temperature too much.
So, for cold weather, it’s all about the layers. If it’s cold and dry, then you want to layer very efficient fabrics that move moisture along while keeping you warm. Start with a good base layer (again, there are warmer ones for winter, but don’t be afraid of thin or even mesh ones too – as long as they are effective at moving moisture away from your skin, they’ll do), add a mid layer, and then add a warmer/windproof/waterproof top layer as the conditions demand. If you need to, add more layers, but usually a wisely chosen three will suffice.
If it’s both cold and wet, then you’ll be wanting a water-resistant top layer if it’s only light rain, or a waterproof top layer for anything more. As we don’t all have the space or the funds for limitless clothing options, the waterproof jacket will do, as long as you accept that you’ll get a bit of a sweat up with it on. Plus, it will also pay off if it’s really cold.
And if it’s really cold, then put something between your head and your helmet. The classic cycling cap will both keep a lot of heat from escaping, and keep the sun and a bit of rain out of your eyes. Cotton is the default material for caps, but my local shop caps are made from a jersey material (Lycra) and benefit from a much better fit for a range of sizes (not as tight – I have a cotton cap that gives me a headache from being a little too tight), but also doesn’t get saturated with sweat like cotton. Plus, I have to say that they are the most comfortable, by far…
The cap: cotton is traditional, Lycra is better.
If it’s a bit colder yet, you might want to go straight to a skullcap – basically a beanie, but it is lined with fleece and covers your ears. From there you can go to a balaclava, if you are riding in temperature well below zero.
So, hands, feet, and torso are covered, which only leaves the legs, and they’re pretty easy.
You have one of two options: use your regular bib-shorts with leg warmers (fleece lined, sometimes with wind-resistant front panels, but these don’t tend to have quite as good a fit), or go for a full-length bib for winter that are almost always fleece-lined, and/or made of a heavier Lycra. There’s always the 3/4 length option if you don’t get too cold, which are otherwise the same as the full length.
And there you have it. The elements of your winter cycling wardrobe. This will likely require some experimentation, as somethings will fit you better than others, some things will reveal their true nature only after a few rides or more, and some things will be more to your personal preferences in terms of the temperature range they keep you in.
We think our latest Daccordi build is pretty, pretty, ridiculously good looking. The Explosive! frameset keeps a racing geometry, as with all Daccordi frames, but with a little added comfort and a more sloping top-tube. These are ready for either mechanical or electronic groupsets, and are available in extra small sizes too. Wheels are the next most important element of a bike, after the frame, so in this one are Mavic’s Ksyrium SLS wheels, which are light, strong, and smooth. Shimano’s 105 groupset is usually considered by many to be rather pedestrian, but their new 11 speed version works exceptionally well, looks pretty much the same as Ultergra, and is, to put it plainly, cheap, making it probably the best value groupset on the market today. All our Daccordi bikes are custom builds, so this is just an example of what you could have. Come in and see some of the frames on offer to start putting together your perfect weapon. Just do us a favour and wait until you’re out of the shop to Explode with excitement…
It’s been a little while since updating the site here, so it might be a good idea to simply catch up a bit on what’s new and what’s exciting, whether it be product or events.
With cycling still growing at a rapid rate, there is no shortage of events to do to keep up your interest. One of the biggest (the biggest) events on the recreational cycling calender is 3 Peaks, now called the Peaks Challenge Series after it’s popularity opened the door for it to become a series this year. This is not a race, but it is definitely a challenge, and one that keeps people coming back year after year. It’s only 2 weeks away now and a good few of our customers are heading over to Falls Creek to give it a go, so good luck to everyone riding it, and don’t forget to take some time to look around once in a while as it’s quite a nice ride if you don’t mind a bit of pain! If you want to stay closer to home, the ever popular Coast to Coast is back on the calendar. Leaving from various locations to accommodate different length routes, the full ride leaves from Glenelg and ends up in Victor Harbour, 120km later. Make it a full day and ride back if that’s not enough for you.
Something that I’ll be taking with me, and something I always have one of tucked away in my saddle bag or pocket, is an h2o wipe, which have proven to be quite a popular item. The weather for 3 Peaks has usually included one or more extremes in the past, but even if it’s perfect all day, it’s really nice to pull one of these out and clean your self up a bit for the quick lunch stop, or after you’ve changed a tube or fiddled with a dropped chain.
Moving from clean hands to comfy hands, we have the new Extreme Graphic gloves from Northwave in store. Check out a review here, but the quick version is that these are a very comfortable, light road glove.
Road gloves usually mean road tyres, and there is no better clincher tyre out there than Vittoria’s Open Corsa. It comes in a few different versions, but the CX is far and away the most popular. We have them in both 23mm and the 25mm is also back in stock (for now!), so if you are riding 3 Peaks or staying local, pop some of these on your wheels and find out how much better your bike will feel rolling on 320tpi tyres.
Something that benefits from fewer threads per inch are Mavic’s Pro (taller) and Race (shorter) sock. It’s going to be a solid 40C all weekend, and these socks are the best when it comes to breathability. Super light, very comfy, we have them in black, white, and yellow, and in both Pro and Race lengths.
Our Orbea sale continues through tothe end of the Tour Down Under, and amongst our selection of great Orbea bikes, we have a handful of Avant’s. Bike Radar named this the disc-bike of the year for 2014, praising it for its “truly stunning frameset, beautiful, comfortable ride”, and “excellent braking”.
Grab one of ours in time for the Bupa Challenge Tour, or if you want something a bit different, you can custom order one from Spain.
Just in time for Christmas, we’re putting all of our existing stock of Orbea bikes on sale. We primarily have road bikes (from $765 to $5000!) with and without disc brakes and with mechanical or electronic groupsets, some urban commuters, a cyclocross bike, and a few mountain bikes to send to a good home.
We have a number of Orbea’s award winning Avant road bikes as well, with a more relaxed geometry, room for wider tyres, and disc brake options.
We also have a good selection of really nice Orbea kit (bibs & jerseys) going cheap.
Great bikes and great savings to be had. Come by and check it out!
Pain. We have all experienced it, but some more than others. What has been your most painful experience might just be nothing to someone else, and some have to live with pain every minute of every day.
Part of what attracts people to ride, and ride hard, is to push ourselves to our limit and then just a little bit beyond. That involves pain, and it makes us feel alive. I suppose if you are in the position to play with pain in that way, you should count yourself lucky.
“Pain is one of the most awful human experiences, which is what makes it one of the most effective – it makes us protect our body. Chronic pain occurs when biological processes keep telling the brain that the body is in danger. The huge challenge of pain is that it is not simply about your body, but about your brain’s evaluation of threat to your body. The factors that contribute to pain can be really complex and sometimes very difficult to spot. All pain, 100% of the time, is a perception constructed by our brain. Scientific studies clearly show that once we realise this complexity of pain and that pain is an intensely individual and personal thing, once we know it in the belly of our nervous system, we greatly increase our chances of recovery. By riding in the Ride for Pain, you will help us reduce the massive personal and societal cost of chronic pain. We really REALLY appreciate your support.”
Professor Lorimer Moseley PhD FACP
Professor of Clinical Neurosciences & Chair, PainAdelaide
Join the ride, get some pain, and help those who don’t have the choice.
Get the full story and details of the ride, which takes place November 16, here.
So we’ve been going through the attic lately and it’s been like Christmas morning, finding all kinds of special toys that have been hiding up there for years. Lately, it’s been all about rims. Custom built wheels used to be the norm, but as with most things today, the product straight out of the factory is usually cheaper and of a pretty goody standard, so custom items are usually relegated to those who specifically want something different, or who are after a slightly better level of quality.
These rims are from the era when good wheels were hand built, at your local shop, by someone who knows their trade. Many are from between the early 80’s and mid 90’s. Almost all are brand new and many are still in their original wrappers. Campagnolo, Ambrosio, Mavic. Tubulars and clinchers. 28, 32, and 36 hole. Silver, black, red, blue, even purple. We have newer ones too, of course (really nice Velocity rims that make good strong wheels for heavier riders). If you are after something custom, give us a call or come in to see our collection.
The temperatures are getting warmer and as the days get longer, so are our service bookings. We’ve got all the right tools and have a wealth of experience that spans over half a century, so there is little we can’t do. General service? No problem. Frames and/or forks re-aligned? Yep. Di2/EPS setup and updates? Sure. Frames reamed? We can do that. Wheel builds? We’ve done thousands – properly. Campagnolo shifter body rebuilds/conversions? Absolutely. We also have a large selection of small parts for repairs, from the most current back through to some extremely hard to find vintage parts – one of the benefits to having been around for so long!
There is almost nothing we can’t or won’t do, but some exceptions would include electric bikes and cheaper department store bikes (kids or adults), as they just tend to open a can of worms. Call us if you are unsure, but do give us a call to book in your bike as it might be a bit of a wait if you just turn up with it and we don’t always have the space to store your bike for extended periods of time.
Now that most of the rain is gone and before you start racking up the spring and summer km’s, let us see to it that your bike is in the best possible shape, so you can be too.
UPDATE: this bike is now in the possession of a very happy, very lucky owner, who is now afraid to ride it, such is its pristine nature…
Oh man… this is a bit of a treat! We could probably wait a few more years and let this thing reach full maturity and then offer it in exchange for your house or yacht, but basically, we’re nice guys, so we’ll let you at it now for slightly less. There’s no time like the present. What we have here is a classic mountain bike from Felt, but it’s got more bling stuck to it than this guy:
What Felt do we speak of? The EPO Team. That’s the effect this will have on your riding and also your social standing. Straight to the top, doped up to your eyeballs. This isn’t your standard old EPO Team with Deore, either. What you end up with is a bike that is lighter than 99% of the craziest carbon lightweights out today, with the best on offer from 2003. Such as:
Custom double butted scandium main frame with a carbon fiber rear-end.
Full Shimano M960 XTR groupset, featuring their Double Control Shift levers, new Hollowtech II crank arms, 3×9 drivetrain with 4 titanium cogs on the cassette, and the super cool reinforced parallel link V-brakes. They feel so very nice.
Rockshox SID forks. Dual Air, Pure DeLite low friction Dampening.
Mavic CrossMax SL UST wheelset with ceramic braking surface.
Felt Carbon saddle with titanium rails. Super light felt alu/carbon bars, stem, seatpost.
This adds up to an XC bike that weighs a pinch under 9.1kg! And here’s the best part – it’s still going to have it’s full manufacturers warranty! “It’s old”, you say. “New XTR is better”, you huff. “It doesn’t even have disc brakes!”, you lament.
This thing oozes coolness. It’s pretty retro, but in a few more years it will be even more so. Regardless of age, XTR is XTR, and this stuff feels amazing. Guaranteed, all your riding buddies will see this and giggle with glee.
You’ll need to be reasonably tall, as it’s a 21.5 frame. This kind of thing is a bit hard to price, given that it’s top spec, old, but getting old enough to be increasing in value, rare, and brand spanking new. It’s on our eBay page, so head over to see what you think. Let us know directly if you need this in your life.