June 2 pix and caps, bound to be typos. Not proofread, and that's OK this time.

Posted on June 01 2017

June 2 pix and caps, bound to be typos. Not proofread, and that's OK this time.


Here are more pix. They're grainy for any number of reasons--high speed film, close crops among them—but they're views of what happens here, and that's the point.

Rich truing a wheel. It's a Czechoslovakian (pre-Czech Rep, I think) spoke wrench, the only one he uses. He's built more than 10,000 wheels with this wrench.

Roman is making sure the rack sets up even.



When you shellac tape or grips, your head and hands move all around, or you'll miss spots.

Cutting the stickyback tape on a head badge.

Mark looking at the HHH rear wheel, checking something. These photos -- it's rare that the mechanics wait or pose. Once in a while a "can you do that again?" but mostly it's on-the-go.

Roman in a technically blown photo that looks way better in b/w than it would in Technicolor, but is nevertheless a bad photograph that I like, anyway. I especially like this supergrainypic:

 This is my favorite, and...good and grainy. It is 3200 film.

And here's Will in our showroom:


The ROADINI samples, one of each size, will be here by June 20 and maybe June 12, and then, if you're on the ROADINI update list, you'll be given advance warning (is it "'advanced" warning"?) a few days ahead of the general news release. We're going to have about 85 of them, not many smalls (48), and heaviest in the 55-58. If you're interested, know/measure your current PBH and saddle height (center of crank to top of saddle), so--if you DO want one—you'll be ready for action.

I don't expect a mad two-day flurry, but we'll probably sell out of them in a few weeks, and it'll be months and months before we get more. The ROADINI is a road bike with Jack Brown 700 x 33.333+ capacity.  Excellent design, fit, comfort, all that--kind of like a ROADEO, but cheaper cause it has more tig-welding on it, but it's not entirely bereft of lugs. Anyway, it's looming, and thanks to those of you who are on the list and letting this happen. Your role is huge in this. It's not just a business and jobs that you're helping, you're also causing these neat bikes to be out there. Our volume is so small, but the bikes will last and will always be good-riding bikes.


John (formerly here, now at RIVELO, is getting some of these NON-DIVISVE patches:



These patches make you happy if you DO shoot film and DO ride bikes. Get them from John, in about a month.

John took this pic on his way to work, with one of those OM-1's.

There are, both tragically and fantastically, some great deals to be had on film cameras these days, mainly because nobody (almost) makes them anymore, and the surviving spouses and family of the dead photographers are cleaning house. Or living shooter have given up. Probably the best deal alive is a used Olympus OM-1 or the slightly newer OM-1n, which should cost $1,000, but you can get them for as little as $45. Any camera repair place can fix them or bring them up to snuff, and there are places that specialize in the OM-1, too. In Vermont, in New York...they're out there.

Lenses are out there, too--and lenses that ought to cost $450 cost $60. OF COURSE places still develop and scan and print. Photolab in Berkeley...Citizen Photo and Blue Moon Photo in Portland..Foresthill Film Lab in Forest Hill, CA. This isn't a link--you have to cut and paste it.


He's an interesting guy in the best ways, not in any weird way...I totally dig him and all he says and his enthusiasm. He's 27 and shoots BMX with a medium format camera. Man, it's not bad.


Last book read: Red River, by Lalita Tademy. It's about reconstruction. Book reading now: bird by bird, a writing book by anne lamott. Also co-reading -- I forget the name of it. Dang. But that's good, too. 





  • J. Joseph: June 23, 2017

    Yup, the stuff called film.

    Even more, it’s hard to separate BMX photography from film. Hey, Digi is easy, but man, never underestimate the “power” of a high (fast) flash sync, where few digital setups can compete with medium format rigs.

  • Joe Young: June 10, 2017

    I have been using my Leica M4P more lately. Do you do your own B&W processing?

  • Lee DeCovnick: June 08, 2017

    Shootin’ film can be just as rewarding as digital. Let me suggest two pro tricks for shooting B&W film.

    1. Use filters for stunning and artistic results. Ansel Adams always traveled with yellow, blue, and orange colored filters plus a selection of neutral density filters.

    2. The not-so-secret secret of color photography is frolicking with the light, immersing the subject and background in layers of liquid light, unfolding the composition (the story) in gradations of light… …well .you get the idea.

    For great B&W film photography, the ideal (not in the staid Aristotelian sense of perfection, but rather as a personal soul-filling expression) is to play with contrast.

    Contrast in the composition. That photo of the closeup hand truing the wheel is an instant classic. The diagonal spokes contrast with rim, the hard metal contrasts with soft fleshy hand.

    Contrast from light and dark. Mark’s face, while holding the brush, is both lit and in shadows.
    Light and dark are universal archetypes: good and evil, yin and yang, hope and despair, beauty and chaos. We instinctively (sub consciously) know the meta -meassages being conveyed in the photo.

    Shoot B&W film in refracted and reflected light for some wonderful effects. ( Rainbows, rushing and still waters, moonbows ….you get the idea)


  • George Carnahan: June 08, 2017

    Jhhn Titterington , I think in Salina Kansas, works on Minolta cameras and bodies. He has done several Minolta SRT’s for me, the ones with mechanical shutters. Also, United Camera Repair in Rock Island Illinois was a Minolta warranty station, and has brought up some lenses to Nikon standards of tightness for me. Dwayne’s Photo Service in Parsons, Kansas develops slide and negative film in-house. They were the last to process Kodachrome II.

  • Joe Bernard: June 06, 2017

    Mark is working on a Hubbuhhubbuh (HHH) tandem, which has v-brakes plus a disc drag brake. I don’t know diddly about tandems, but I assume the drag is for gradually scrubbing off speed when that weighty combination of bike and people is screaming down Mt. Diablo, the v-pads are smoking, and you realize HOLY CRAP WE’RE STILL GOING PRETTY FAST.

    Speaking of bikes at Riv, I saw a pic of a raw-finish CLEM without a seat lug. I’d love to know what this is about.

  • TT: June 05, 2017

    In pic no. 5 I think Mark is wondering why this bike has a disc brake AND a rim brake. I’m wondering about it too. Is this the new Riv BAH (Belt And Suspenders)?

  • David Bivins: June 04, 2017

    I shoot a Leica almost every day of my life, but I do think the best deal for someone looking for a bargain on excellent film cameras is the Minolta pre-autofocus line. The Rokkor lenses are excellent. Try an XD-11 body with any of their 50mm lenses (even the “newer” Celtics) and you’ve got a great setup. I have a 58mm f/1.2 that’s insane. Probably harder to find now. Or the 24mm Rokkor for amazing closeup work.
    Leica worked with Minolta on Leica’s first SLR, and the Leica CL was a collaboration with Minolta, which resulted in Minolta coming out with the CLE shortly after. Anyway, my point is that you can get a remarkable number of high quality lenses for the Minolta system without breaking the bank. I think the brand was always overshadowed by Leitz, Nikon, and Canon.

  • grant petersen: June 02, 2017

    Good film stuff is so cheap now. If you’re looking for Olympus stuff, OM-1 gear in particular, it is hard to beat ebay@olympusquest.com. The guy, Alexander, is a Russian dude who lives in the UAE…an unlikely source for Olympus gear, maybe—and there are lots of other in this country…but THIS guy, gosh-gosh-gosh, has more than the rest of the universe, much NEW, much Nearly New, and seems to have an ongoing supply of it, so if you’re looking for something he doesn’t have, next month maybe he will. He’s honest. It takes about a month to get stuff, and maybe the by 22nd day you’ll be thinking some buy in the UAE is having a laugh, but—everything I’ve ordered has arrived.
    Between him and normal eBay and Blue Moon Photo in Portland and Citizen Photo in Portland and KEH photo and junk shops and BH photo—-the used superdeal finery is out there, developable, scannable, whatever you like. The Canon AE-1, SpotMatic—all those are killer cameras, great lenses, and easy to use. You have to enjoy the waiting game, break free of the instant technicolor gratification, and put a little odd effort into forcing yourself to ignore the miracles of phonetography, but it’s all fun. Next time I’ll post a dozen or so of my worst photos. So far I just put up the ones I like, but there are so many more that I don’t. I like taking them, though!

  • DDD: June 02, 2017


  • Tony: June 02, 2017

    Took over my dad’s Spotmatic about 12 years ago and have been shooting B&W ever since. Picked up two more Spotmatic cameras at $30.00 each on ebay along with some beautiful super takumar lenses (35mm and 105 mm). Bought a scanner to scan my Ilford Super XP2 negatives that the local drugstore can develop in color chemical C41 process. The quality is outstanding and the enjoyment never ending.

  • Chris Lampe: June 01, 2017

    I just discovered that Grant’s Peaking posts are generating a fair amount of dialogue in the comments section. I enjoy the discussion on the Google group and look forward to even more here, but is there a way to reverse the comments’ order so that the first one appears at the top and I can cycle thru the pages chronologically, instead of backwards?

  • Chris Lampe: June 01, 2017

    My 16 year old niece, who is quite artistically talented, is getting into photography and I’ve been showing her some of Grant’s B&W’s, which she has enjoyed. Hopefully it will spark an interest in bikes as well…. ;)

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