Monday, May 05, 2014

First MTB ride of the year!

Tomorrow night (Tuesday) we'll be doing our first mountain bike ride this spring in Riverbend Nature Center. We are leaving the shop at 7:00, riding for about an hour. Anyone looking to get in some dirt time before any of the metro area trails open should come.

Hope everyone can make it.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Fat Tuesday ride

We will be riding snowmobile trails again tomorrow at 7:00pm leaving from Bridge Square in Northfield. Everyone is welcome, fat bikes are recommended. We will ride for 1-1.5 hours. Lights are needed as it will be dark.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Black Friday Ride

In keeping with tradition here at the shop we will be doing a Black Friday mountain bike ride in Riverbend Nature Center for anyone looking to escape the shopping madness.

Ride is leaving the shop at 11:00am, the fatter your tire the better.

Hope to see everyone here!

P.S. we'll make a Ham that you all know and love...

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Bike Sale

With the changing seasons here, we've got some great closeouts on our remaining inventory of 2013 bikes. Many of the bikes are on closeouts as large as 40% off!!!

Check out some of the great deals we've got going on!

2012 Surly Moonlander
Size: 20"
Sale price: $1470
Original Price: $2350
2013 Trek Domane 6 SeriesProject One
SRAM Rival
Bontrager Aura Wheelset
Size: 56cm
Sale price: $3217
Original Price: $4949
2013 Salsa El Mariachi 3
Size: SM & LG
Sale price: $1072
Original Price: $1650

2013 Salsa El Mariachi 2
Size: MD
Sale price: $1299
Original Price: $1999

2013 Salsa Fargo 3
Size: 18"
Sale price: $942
Original Price: $1450

2013 Salsa Fargo 2
Size: 20"
Sale price: $1267
Original Price: $1950

2013 Surly Cross Check
Size: 42cm
Sale price: $1062
Original Price: $1250

2013 Surly Cross Check
Size: 54cm
Sale price: $1067
Original Price: $1250

2013 All-City Macho Man
Size: 55cm & 52cm
Sale price: $1355
Original Price: $1595

2013 Trek Cross Rip Elite
Size: 56cm
Sale price: $747
Original Price: $1149

2013 Trek 1.2C
Size: 58cm
Sale price: $584
Original Price: $899

2013 Trek Lexa S C
Size: 47cm
Sale price: $584
Original Price: $899

2013 Trek Wahoo
Size: 17"
Sale price: $370
Original Price: $569

2013 Trek Marlin
Size: 19"
Sale price: $409
Original Price: $629

2013 Trek marlin
Size: 17"
Sale price: $409
Original Price: $629

2013 Trek 7.2 FX WSD
Size: 15"
Sale price: $325
Original Price: $499

2013 Trek Wahoo
Size: 19"
Sale price: $370
Original Price: $569

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Changes at the shop.

This coming fall with mark nine years that I've run Milltown Cycles.  In that time we've taken a rather dismal business and built something that I think is pretty special.  I've met countless friends over that time, and have had the opportunity to experience some amazing things. I have to say that it's been one of the best ways to grow up that I can imagine.  It has been a truly incredible experience, one that I'm immensely proud of.

I have recently started another journey of similar proportions.  Earlier this spring I accepted, and last week I started, a new job with Salsa Cycles.  I am representing Salsa as their Western Region Brand Ambassador.   I am incredibly excited about my new role, and I look forward to the future with Salsa and QBP.  

Some rumors have been out there that the shop is closing.  This is not true.  The shop will continue to be open and operate as it always has.  I will of course have a diminished role at the shop going forward.  We will continue to offer exceptional sales and service provided by Curtis our manager and our professional staff.  I will be in the shop from time to time, and I can still be reached with questions or issues.  

I can't thank you all enough for the support you have provided me.  It's been a hell of a ride. 

Be well, 


Friday, June 28, 2013

A bit of clarification.

Many personal, business and administrative reasons led to the canceling of this years 4th of July race. 

The road construction did lead to detouring the course.  A miscommunication between myself and the city about chip sealing 5th street occurred, making our detoured course not possible as well. The city was not aware that it would affect the race, and I did not inform them of the issue.  

We had the option of rerouting the course a third time, which would have still allowed the event to continue.  We chose not to do this as the available route would not be ideal for the race, would have further inconvenienced city residents ,and would have altered the event negatively. 

Throughout this whole process the city administration, police department, and street department have been wonderful to work with.  As always they have been accommodating and have helped us whenever we've had questions.

We are looking forward to the race next year, and plan on holding the race on it's original course as it has been then. 

Questions about this can be directed to my email

Thank you. 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Salsa Issues Vaya Fork Voluntary Recall

Salsa issued a voluntary recall affecting some 2012 Salsa Vaya and some La Cruz Disc forks.  Date codes are stamped onto the fork steer tube and indicate whether your fork is affected or not.  Please contact us or stop in if you have a fork/bike to be looked at.  Details here

From Salsa:

"This recall involves all Salsa Vaya bicycle forks stamped with the batch codes 2011 02 21, 2011 04 11, 2011 06 14 and 2011 09 09 and all Salsa La Cruz bicycle forks stamped with the batch codes 2011 03 01, 2011 04 08, 2011 05 30 and 2011 09 09."

Saturday, June 08, 2013

XX1 White Industries Fatbike Set up.

We added a XX1 driver to White Industries new SnoWhite hub this week. It's a set up that will call Maine home soon enough, an it's stunning.  I love the idea of 1x11 on a Fatbike, and this shows why perfectly. What a gorgeous combo!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Custom Bike Build: Matt's Salsa Ti

We wrapped up the build on Matt's El Mariachi Ti singlespeed yesterday.  This one turned out great.  It's understated and classy, with just the right amount of bling.  It's not a bike that shouts, "look at me!"  Rather, it's a bike that calmly says, "why yes, I am a kick ass bike."

 Starting with the already awesome Salsa Ti frame, we built this bike off of a full compliment of King bits.  Hubs, headset, and bottom bracket are finished in King's classic Navy color.  It's my favorite color they offer against brushed Ti.  There are two reasons Chris King parts are worth the asking price.  One is they last forever with proper service.  The other is that there are just pretty.  'Nuff said.

Bontrager's 2.35" 29-2 tires are mounted on their excellent Duster tubeless rims.  This combo is reasonably light while being durable and fast rolling.  The tread is largely open in the center with ramped knobs and features much larger side knobs for cornering.  The size of the tires fills both the frame and fork well.  They look very proportional with the larger tubing size of the frame.

Up front Fox's 15mm thru axle, tapered steertube, 100mm Kashima coated Float will take anything thrown at it.  This super adjustable fork looks great on the bike, and will work on CO rocks even better.  Chris King's Inset 7 tapered headset brings matches up great with the new hourglass shaped, machined head tube.

Matt wanted to use a set of silver XT cranks on this bike.  Using a silver Dimension, (formerly Salsa branded,) chainring carries the look through, while contrasting nicely with the titanium tubes behind.  Shimano cranks are favorites of ours for singlespeed builds.  They are lightweight, solid, and super durable.  Rolling along on a Chris King bottom bracket will have this working well for as long as I can imagine.

A Chris King's ISO disc hub with a 15mm thru axle is used up front.  The Shimano XT brake with their Ice Tech rotor is visible in the background.  These rotor surface of these is a stainless clad material similar to your frying pan at home.  Together with the large black aluminum rotor center it serves to dissipate heat from braking.  Even the brake pad have aluminum cooling fins on them to further reduce heat build up.

The result is a firm, powerful feel at the lever, almost devoid of brake fade.  These are the most impressive feeling brakes I've ever ridden. The levers are three way adjustable to dial in the feel you'd like them to have.  The XT brakes are very similar to Shimano's SLX line as well.  The SLX's are available at a lower price while retaining most of the XT's performance.  Bontrager Race X Lite carbon bars, stem, and seatpost are used in this build.

This is a super bike.  It's light, strong, durable, comfortable, and really good looking.  It should serve Matt well for years.  Now I just need to make it out to Colorado to ride with him!

Thursday, March 07, 2013

Registration for Chequamegon 100 Fills, Benefitting CAMBA and IMBA

We're thrilled to be a title sponsor or the Cheq 100 race again this year!  This year's race was set up for be a fundraiser for IMBA and CAMBA.  I love the idea of races directly benefiting the places they are held.  The set up worked phenomenally well.  Thanks to overwhelming rider support registration filled in three days.  With a capacity crowd of racers signed up, the race will generate well over $10,000 for these two organizations!

From IMBA:

For Immediate Release 3-7-2013
Contact Mark Eller
IMBA Communications Director
303-545-9011 ext. 115

The Chequamegon 100 mountain bike race recently announced that registration has filled for the 2013 edition of the event. Thanks to a partnership between the Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association (CAMBA) and the International Mountain Bike Association (IMBA), the entry fees will generate more than $10,000 for the development and improvement of local trails.

"This is a great partnership," said Ron Bergin, executive director of CAMBA. "We have very ambitious trail development program, including a yearly trail development and maintenance budget of almost $60,000. The funds generated through the Chequamegon 100 will help us meet our financial needs for the 2013 season."
Sponsorships generated enough funding to cover the event's operating costs, allowing entry fees to be directed toward advocacy and trail building programs. Salsa Cycles and Milltown Cycles led the charge, sharing title-level sponsorship.Twin Six also provided a significant boost with a supporting-level sponsorship.

“Great things happen when folks come together to focus on a common goal,” said Hansi Johnson, IMBA’s region director for the Upper Midwest. “The sponsors wanted to help out with trails in the Chequamegon area, and specifically with CAMBA. They realized that their race was a great mechanism for boosting that support. IMBA was ready to assist, including providing online registration technology — it all fell into place, which will result in better trails for everyone to enjoy.”

Other event partners event include Lakewoods Resort; The River’s Eatery; RJF Insurance; Chequamegon National Forest, Hayward Office; U.S. Forest Service Wisconsin Office; and the Cable Area Chamber of Commerce. A check ceremony is being planned for the June 23 race date to celebrate this fundraising success story.

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

2013 Salsa El Mariachi Ti

Salsa's 2013 Ti El Mariachis are as gorgeous as ever.  The medium frame is slated to be built as a gorgeous singlespeed bound for Colorado, the large is slated for shop stock.  I love the lines on these frames.

The complete bike from Salsa is equally pretty.  Blue accents have always looked good on ti, and this bike pulls it off great.  From the Fox fork decals, to the seatpost/stem/bar set up, to the XO rear derailleur and nipples.  It's just the right amount of color and really looks the part of a well put together bike.

This frame features Salsa Alternator dropouts like their steel bikes.  These are now cast dropouts, rather than the plate style found on last years bikes.  Sram's XO derailleur in blue matches the rest of the build nicely.

Salsa uses their own carbon handlebar and carbon seatpost on this bike.  Added to the blue stem, they round out the blue theme up front.  

Shimano XT brakes are some of the best I've ever used.  I'm glad to see them on this bike.

A smart mix of Sram X7, X9, and X0 parts keep the cost reasonable while keeping overall performance high.

Formed 44mm headtubes are a really nice feature of this bike.  The match up to the headsets very well, and make the front end of the bike really clean looking.  The welds all over the frames are quite good looking, these are no exception.

The whole package adds up to a great bike.  These look great, and for $3950 they stack up well to similar bikes on the market.  Frames sell for $2199, and can be built up however you'd like.

Come in and check these fine bikes out, or give us a call to look into options for builds!

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

White Industries Fatbike Hubs

White Industries unveiled their new fatbike hubs at the North American Handbuilt Bicycle Show a few weekend ago.  They are going to be offered in the matte black finish you see here, as well as in their classic high polished finish.  We love White Industries hubs, and are thrilled to see them enter the fatbike market.

These will sell for about $180 and $340 for the front and rear hub, the later with a titanium freehub body.  Delivery on these is expected in about a month, give us a call to reserve yours today!

Photo credit to White Industries.

Friday, February 22, 2013

2014 Salsa Carbon Beargrease Carbon Fatbike!

These photos were supplied to us by Salsa of their new 2014 carbon Beargrease fatbike. The top end bike will weigh in at 24lbs equipped with Sram XX1 with a new XX1 fatbike crank! The bike equipped as such will sell for $5500, with a X9 version of the bike available at just $3499.99. Both bikes will include an all new tapered steertube carbon fatbike fork. More details as we get them!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Homemade Studded Fatbike Tires.

We've had weeks of persistent icy conditions on our local mountain bike trails.  While most were ride able on the fringes of trails, or with extreme caution in a lot of spots, I'm pretty sick of it.  Tip toeing around on really sketchy ice is not generally my idea of a good time.  Spurred on by a recent friend's crash, and with a desire to once again ride quickly, I got the notion to make a pair of studded fatbike tires.

45North does make a set of off the shelf studded tires, the Dillinger.  These are super light, and have a ton of studs.  They represent the current high tech, super go fast option for studded fatty tires.  They also come with a price tag that rivals most nice truck tires, and that is frankly a lot of money for some pretty specific conditions.  I happened to have a set of the less expensive 27tpi Surly Nate tires laying around.  Due to their lower cost, and pronounced, fairly large knobs I thought these would be a prime candidate for some homebrew stud action.

Starting with the tires and a caliper I measure the knob height and casing thickness.  Based on these measurements I determined that a screw between 1/2" and 5/8" would be required to yield a preferred stud height.  Once at the hardware store to compare, it was obvious that the 1'2" screws would be too short.  These would only allow for the very pointed tip to stick out through the knob.  I figured this would be less than ideal, as it appeared it would be very easy to wear that point out.  Conversely, the 5/8" screws were obviously going to be too long.  These screws cost about $3.50 per 100 count box.  Compare that to Gripstuds!  As it's a lot easier to cut things shorter rather than longer I bought the 5/8" ones and headed back to the shop.  These were technically 8 x 5/8" size, with a Phillips flat head.

The stud pattern I chose was to alternate every other smaller center lug, and every other mid side lug.  I figured this would provide enough more straight line traction, while adding the most traction fairly far out for cornering or side hill stability.  The first step in making these is to drill the lugs from the outside in using a small drill bit.  You can see I centered the holes on the outer knobs while opting for a slightly front center hole on the inner knobs.  It's important to use a drill bit that is about half the size of the core diameter of the screw, not the thread diameter of the screw.  This will allow the screw to have something to bite into.

At this point I simply filled all the holes with screws driven from the inside out.  I did this with a hand held screwdriver.  It's the most monotonous part of this process, but it's also one of the easiest.

On the inside of the tire I made a boot comprised of strips of Gorilla tape laid across the length of the tire.  The tape does not stick to the tire itself, as it's oily and slippery.  By applying to layers of tape in an overlapping scale type arrangement I was able to create a fairly durable inner layer that held it's shape well.  It remains to be seen whether this will provide sufficient support to stop the screw heads from poking through to the tube.  Frankly I suspect it will fail at some point, and based on how it failed I'll rethink my strategy.   

After the tires were lined I had to address the issue of the now too long screws.  I took a small bolt cutter and trimmed the screw height over the knobs to about 3-4mm.  This was long enough I felt to be able to bite well, without being too long as to bend the knob over on hard ice or dirt.  The cut actually makes the screw more aggressive than just the point I think.  I had to remember not to snag clothing or appendages on them, they're sharp as hell.

So again to recap.  I used 8 x 5/8" sheet metal screws for studs.  I drilled each knob in the pattern that I wanted.  The screws were then simply threaded into the knobs from the inside of the tire.  I made boots for the inside of the tire by overlapping small sections of Gorilla tape two layers thick.  I then trimmed the screws tips with a handheld bolt cutter.

These worked very well no my first ride with them.  I rode the same trails the next day on my Mukluk with Big Fat Larry's.  The trails we all ride able on both set ups.  On the Big Fat Larry's I had to slow way down on many sections, and I could feel the tires slipping all the time.  The studded tires provided absolute confidence.  I was able to blaze through sections, even standing and sprinting across icy sections.  The studded tires simply out performed anything else I've ridden in these conditions.  I don't doubt that I worked harder with the studded tires.  For the few weeks of the year where conditions dictate their use, these are just the cat's meow.  I only wish I'd made them sooner.

I'll update on how these tires wear, and I'll report any issue that come up with them.  So far I'm impressed, and I plan on testing them further to their limit by attempting my St Olaf hill loop on them this weekend.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Studded Moonlander Afternoon

I finally got fed up with the ultra icy conditions.  Over the last two days I sunk 232 sheet metal screws into a set of Surly Nate fatbike tires and mounted them on my Moonlander.  The resulting performance was unreal on today's ride.

I'll have a write up tomorrow, but sufficed to say I'm thrilled.  They work exceedingly well paired with the Clownshoe 100mm rims on the Moonlander.