16 October 2011

The obligatory new bike ride report

As the title alludes, this will be the ride report for my new bike. We will get there but first you need a history lesson to make any of my commentary valid. I casually rode BMX bikes EVERYWHERE as a kid. Like all the time, every day. We lived on top of a river valley so I rode lots of singletrack before the term was coined, most likely. My dad bought us dirt bikes when I was around 13, and every weekend we got out a dad's place, we rode our dirt bikes constantly. Mine was a 1985 XR100. Dramatically underpowered, air cooled, but pretty. As I got my skateboard, then a driver's license, my desires to ride greatly diminished, in fact I took an eight year hiatus from any biking whatsoever. I got a mountain bike when I was around 20 and rode it EVERYWHERE for about 4 months until I broke my elbow into a million pieces. I couldn't ride anymore, period.

Fifteen years later, I bought a brand new DR-Z400S because the riding position allowed me to actually ride again. I used it to commute and rode some trails on the way home. I found a local singletrack club and re-established my love with singletrack, albeit in a different sense. Well, after some changes in employment, and some other stuff, I realized that I was not riding the right bike for my purposes. I was riding a ultra-reliable, ultra-heavy bike in tight woods trying to keep up with KTM 300XC's and such. Now frankly, I did well amongst those other bikes, but ultimately the bike was 320lbs ready to ride and those KTM's were 230lbs. Not the right weapon.

After much deliberation over a 2 stroke or a 4 stroke, I narrowed down the field to two competitors. One was a proven technical design but nothing flashy, and the other was a technological marvel, that was crazy expensive. If I was going 4 stroke, I was going for gold. EFI was a must, as was a light feeling bike in the woods. If I was going 2 stroke, it had to be simple, and I mean as simple as possible. I am not a maintenance lover. I do what I need to, but I'd much rather ride.

Ultimately, I went into a few showrooms and sat on the Husky and the 'Berg and decided, the weight was going to be the deciding factor, both on the trails and on the wallet...





08 October 2011

A new day is dawning...






I figured it was a good time to get rid of the tank and learn how to float over obstacles instead of mowing them down. I'm so exited!

Anyone want to buy a DR-Z?

11 May 2011

A long winter... (with no end in sight)

Like the title states, it has been a long winter. It's the first full winter as a full time dad, and it has been particularly snowy for our region. These two things compounded to make my life miserable for the last month. I am bored stiff, and can't go out riding due to the mass amounts of snow in the Eastern Slopes of the Rockies. The weather this week has been great though. I've got a tan already, and so does my kid, but it doesn't help that all I want to do is ride.

I don't have much to report in the way of rides, but I guess I have been out once to burn some fuel. Our club had an evening at the local mx park ,and I've got video to prove it. I've been spending money like crazy and if all goes according to plan, I'll have new springs in the bike and an oil change done by Saturday morning and then I'll go out with some friends for a dual sport ride. I bought a HD helmet cam as well and should have some footage for you soon.

Thanks for being a loyal reader, and if you truly care, do a sun dance or something for me.

16 April 2011

3d test 1

Well, I'm excited to try out the 3D rig, but it didn't quite fly this first time. I used circuit board to hold the two cameras in exact alignment. This is key, and well, I ended up bending it slightly when I mounted it on my helmet. I'll have to keep trying things in order to get it working, but I do think I'm onto something and will post again aft my next tests.

22 March 2011

3D is coming

Just when you thought it was safe to be a low budget blog, someone had to introduce a fancy, easy way to make a 3D movie. YouTube announced that their online video editor can sync videos to make them 3D. Just think, helmetcam footage in 3D! Now I know what you're thinking, how can he possibly do this for under a million dollars per video, but there is an explanation: eBay!

There are cheap cameras available in Hong Kong that ship all over the world for nothing. I bought two 2MP video cameras the size of my thumb for $21 CAD shipped. They are called MD80 cameras, and they are perfect for quick footage capture. Sure the quality isn't HD, but for $20 it's worth the experiment. Just wait, it'll be spectacular!

If you need a pair of anaglyph glasses you can get them from the National Film Board for free!

08 March 2011

Getting ready for the season!

Well, I've been sufficiently scolded by the other riders to know my bike is way too heavy for real singletrack riding. I am pretty much told every ride that I need to get a new bike. That's not going to happen any time soon though, so I decided to try a different route. I'm actually happy with my weight, but I do have a little too much bulk in the midsection. I aim to remedy that. Yesterday I started a new fitness regime to get me in the best shape of my life. This is actually going to be a hard thing to do since at one point I rode my mountain bike back and forth to work daily, and rode every evening as well for fun.

Well, today I am 96kg am 2m tall. I'm not going to change those stats too much, but my waist is around 36" and that is something I want to remedy. On Saturday my wife spent some cash in a few clothing stores. She came out of one and said to me how do you want to spend $130, since that's what I just spent. I knew exactly what I wanted since I had been looking for a way to ask her for the cash anyways.

Over the last few months I have been looking for a workout plan that wasn't too difficult to implement. I have a nice universal machine in my basement, along with a spin bike and treadmill. The only problem was, every workout I tried to find had to be adapted to suit my equipment, and I really wanted to just find an immediate solution. I found one. This one requires no equipment besides a DVD player.



Now the name insanity implies that this is something you can do to get crazy results in 60 days. This may be true. Also there is the implication that you are going to be doing the most hardcore fitness of your life. I agree, it's hard, but really it's just a glorified aerobics program wrapped up in a "hardcore" package. I'm super motivated to get this Insanity over with, so I can toss my bike around like it's a 100kg two stroke. I am cardio man. I will be able to ride forever come this summer, I will keep up and pass those on their fancy Austrian machines.

If you know me personally, ask me how my workouts are going. If I don't answer that I am sore or tired, call me a sissy, or wimp or mama's boy. Whatever you want, I need the extra motivation. 

04 March 2011

RMDRA Guided Rides Video.

In case you didn't know, I'm the guided rides director for my local singletrack club. I made this today to promote out guided rides program. What do you think? Is it any good?

03 January 2011

A new direction

Well, I've come to realize that I'm not so eloquent with the whole words thing. I really want to do something creative, but can't seem to do it blogging. I'm going to make a drastic change to my blog. Are you ready for the big idea? I'm going completely video, but more like an infomercial. Perhaps that isn't the best descriptor, but kind of.

Ok, I'll lay it out for you. Videos of singletrack, sounds of engines, a voice overlay of product reviews, maybe some how to's or perhaps some commentary on something related to motorcycling in some way. What I'd love to see would be a "crowd-sourced" video blog, with me ultimately doing the production. I may not provide all the video, nor the commentary, but you'll be hearing my voice, and watching the video I put together.

What do you think faithful reader (I know there's at least one person who'll read this)? Please give me some input, does it even sound like a good idea?