Taipei Bike Show Sneak Preview

Our team have just made their way back from the Taipei Cycle Show and they’ve shared some cool product news.  Here is a sneak peek at what Fuji has in store for us in the future.

How can you take the uber-fast Fuji SST and make it even faster?  Paint it gold of course!  We plan to bring this limited edition SST paint scheme to your local Performance Store this summer in honor of Footon-Servetto’s participation in the 2010 Tour De France.

Sorry for the photo quality, we’re working with cell phone shots here.  Hi-res photos will be on the way as soon as these bikes are produced and make their way across the ocean to us.

Meet the Manager – Indianapolis, IN & Santa Rosa, CA

For today’s Employee Profiles, we wanted to highlight the store managers at what will be our 2 newest retail stores.  Both of these stores will be celebrating their Grand Openings starting on Friday, April 9, 2010, so if you’re around Indianapolis or Santa Rosa that weekend, please stop by and say hello to Karen or Tommy!

Indianapolis, Indiana

Karen Glowacki

Store Manager Name:
Karen Glowacki

Store Location:
8366 Castleton Corner Drive
Castleton Commons Shopping Center
Indianapolis, IN 46250

(317) 578-1062 Read more of this post

Spin Doctor Tech Tip – Breaking In Disc Brakes

Spin Doctor

You just got new disc brakes or new pads for your old disc brakes.  But now that you’ve started riding, the brakes don’t stop like they used to. What do you do?

Well, you need to start by breaking in your new disc brakes, or, as the process is sometimes called, burnishing, burning in or bedding in. Whatever you call it, it will make your disc brakes work better by doing 3 things:

1) It will rid the pads and rotor of superficial oil, grime and contaminants that inhibit friction.

2) It will reshape the pads so that they conform more accurately to the rotors. After breaking in more of the pads will contact more of the rotor.

3) It will increase stickiness (coefficient of friction) of the system by transferring a thin, even layer of brake pad compound to the rotor. Read more of this post

Flashback Friday – Spring/Summer 1983

Moving right along with our Flashback Fridays we find ourselves at our second ever catalog – Spring/Summer 1983.  Here are some fun page details:

True made-in-Italy framesets (which came with a front derailleur, of course) and custom build kits.  Obviously we were a much smaller company then (though we’ve been considering heading in this direction again sometime in the future – comments?).  How about a frame with a full Campy Super Record group for $765.00?  It goes without saying that bicycle technology has come a long way and there’s also inflation to consider, but you can’t even get just a Record Crankset for $765 these days! Read more of this post

Product Profile – Performance Ultra Jersey

The new Performance Ultra Short Sleeve Jersey is our version of that jersey that you reach for on warm days when you just want to ride.  When you don’t want to be a rolling billboard, but still want the features and style of a competitive jersey.

Of course, it’s got the technical fabric you’re looking for: 100% channeled micro-polyester fabric to wick moisture away from your skin and into the outer layer of the fabric, for quick evaporation, plus a UPF 24+ rating to give you plenty of sun protection (so you can work on that classic cyclist’s tan).

But it’s also got a form-fitted design that features mesh inserts (outlined in natty contrasting piping) running all the way from the collar to the back of the jersey, to allow for cooling airflow without having to unzip the full-length zipper.  This is a serious jersey with understated style and the features to match: Read more of this post

Stephen Roche’s 1987 Triple Crown

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, and because we’ve been feeling a throwback vibe lately, we’re going to dedicate this post to retired Irish pro cyclist Stephen Roche and his magnificent 1987 season.  In this magical year, Roche won the Giro d’Italia, the Tour de France and finally the World Championships to become only the second ever cyclist to complete this remarkable trifecta (sorry, no points for guessing that Eddy Merckx was the only other Triple Crown winner)!

Roche’s run started with the Giro d’Italia, where he won 3 stages but had to out ride his own teammate, Roberto Visentini, to win back the maglia rosa and take the title:

1987 Giro d'Italia champion Stephen Roche with the winner's trophy. (Sirotti)

1987 Giro d’Italia champion Stephen Roche with the winner’s trophy. (Sirotti)

Exhausted but elated to be the first Giro winner from outside mainland Europe, Roche was the narrow favorite to win the Tour de France.  Roche won the individual time trial (one of his specialties) on stage 10, but later in the race almost committed an epic blunder on a mountainous stage 20, which crossed the famous peaks of the Galibier and the Madeleine before finishing at La Plagne.  Roche attacked early and was in a breakaway for hours, but on the final climb he was caught and gapped by his biggest rival, Pedro Delgado.  At one point in the climb, Delgado established a 1 minute 30 second lead over Roche, but the tenacious Irishman clawed his way back to only lose 4 seconds on the day.  Roche then went on to win the final 35km time trial, making up a 30 second deficit to Delgado, to take the final maillot jaune by 40 seconds and become the first Irish Tour de France champion.

But why just read when YouTube can provide this video of the final week of the 1987 Tour (set to a rockin’ Top Gun soundtrack, no less!):

To cap off his memorable year, Roche won the World Road Race Championship in Austria, even though he was really only marking a breakaway for his countryman Sean Kelly.  But when no one was able to bring back the break, Roche was in the right place at the right time, and attacked with 500m to go to win the rainbow jersey:

Stephen Roche winning the 1987 World Championship road race

Stephen Roche winning the 1987 World Championship road race

So on this day of all things Irish, we tip our cap to Stephen Roche and his amazing 1987 Triple Crown.  These days Roche is still active in the cycling world as a commentator, charity fundraiser, cycling camp operator and proud father of current pro cyclist Nicholas Roche!  In fact, it was in the capacity of proud papa that the parents of this blog’s author bumped into Roche at the 2010 World Road Race Championship in Mendrisio, Switzerland, where he happily stopped to pose for a snapshot:

Roche 2010 Worlds

Stephen Roche at the 2010 World Championships

Flashback Fridays – From Our Archives

1982.  Ronald Reagan was in the White House, Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney released “Ebony and Ivory”, “Cheers” debuted on TV and the personal computer was Time magazine’s “Person of the Year”.  But there was another momentous occasion that year as well (at least for us), as we published our very first catalog!

Performance Bicycle Shop first catalog

Consider this the launch of our new “Flashback Fridays” where (most) Fridays we’ll scan and post some pages from an old catalog.  This isn’t to make fun of the models (as much as we’d love to take a few jabs at those rainbow suspenders) but to illustrate the winding road that cycling has traversed over the last 30 years.  Hopefully you’ll enjoy it as much as we do.  Feel free to leave us your opinions in the comments below (or give us some ideas of what you’d like to see)!

North American Handmade Bicycle Show

Welcome to our coverage of the North American Handmade Bicycle Show: the story of the Lugs. Hopefully by now you’ve checked out our facial hair coverage but don’t worry, facial hair wasn’t the only thing we snapped pictures of.  The above iconic lugs were from a bike by Independent Fabrications:

It’s refreshing to see racy high end bikes with clearance for fenders.  This trend toward practical, utilitarian bikes was prevalant throughout the entire show whether you were looking for a stylish commuter (here from Cielo Cycles):

. . . or were looking for a bike to carry all of your gear over snow (from Banjo Cycles):

Read more of this post

Google Maps Bicycling Directions

As you may have heard, Google just announced the exciting news that bicycling is now an option on Google Maps!  Just select “Bicycling” when getting directions in Google Maps, or  just choose the “Bicycling” layer under the “More” tab when you are viewing a map (if you simply want to peruse the biking options in an area).

Basically Google has worked with many different sources to include as much data as possible about bike-friendly routes across the country.  When you select biking directions, a route is calculated based on an algorithm that attempts to factor in the specific needs of a cyclist, from utilizing bike trails and lanes to avoiding big hills.  They even give you an estimate of the time the route will take, with a fatigue factor built in!  When you are looking at a map with the biking layer turned on, use this key to decipher the bike-specific features:

  • Dark green indicates a dedicated bike-only trail;
  • Light green indicates a dedicated bike lane along a road;
  • Dashed green indicates roads that are designated as preferred for bicycling, but without dedicated lanes

Of course this feature is only in beta testing right now, so take any information with a grain of salt.  But we’ve been playing around with this feature this morning, and so far we’re pretty impressed.  Below is a map of the area around our headquarters here in Chapel Hill; the bicycling layer does a very good job of capturing bike-only trails and also includes many roads that have bike lanes or are more “bike-friendly” (at least in larger towns):

But there’s still a long way to go with this project, and Google is looking for your support.  Go online and play with the Google biking feature; try out some directions or just browse the map.

Cyclists that you are, you have the information that Google is looking for to refine this service and make it even better and more accurate (when you get biking directions, you’ll also get a prompt to report any problems or suggestions with the route). Let your voice be heard and we can make this feature better for everyone.

As the service improves, we’ll look for ways to incorporate this feature into our website, but let us know what you find while checking out your area.  Who knows, maybe you’ll find a new route to ride this afternoon!

Diamondback Knuckle Box

Performance Bicycles is proud to present 8 brand new models of 2010 Diamondback full suspension all-mountain bikes.

With industry-leading technology and on-trend graphics, Diamondback has delivered two lines of bikes that are both high performance and great values. Diamondback Sortie bikes have 5″ of travel to tackle any trail while Mission bikes step up to 6″ of travel for all-mountain fun.  Both feature a new, revised Knuckle Box suspension design.

Knuckle Box is “Perfect Suspension Made Simple”:

Even More Efficient than Before: Diamondback designed Knuckle Box to pedal efficiently with long-travel suspension. For 2010, Diamondback dialed in a bit more efficiency by reducing the bike’s overall leverage ratio. The bikes are buttery-smooth on small bumps, but accelerate and climb even better than before.

Stiffer In all the Right Places: It’s easy to build a bike that’s stiff and heavy. Same goes for light and flexy. Building a frame that’s stiff and light? That’s the challenge. The Knuckle Box design has always boasted one of the best stiffness-to-weight ratios on the market. For 2010, Diamondback engineered even more stiffness into each frame without adding an extra ounce.

Excellent Maneuverability: Rail a tight switchback on one of these bikes and it’ll hit you—this bike tracks like it’s on rails. There’s a good reason for that. The Knuckle Box design has an exceptionally low center of gravity, which boosts stability. It’s basic physics and the same reason Indy 500 race cars look like more like go-karts and less like monster trucks.

Wickedly Smooth: Diamondback wanted this suspension to have that perfect “endless travel” feeling, yet didn’t want to blow through all that travel when they rode off something stupid-big. That’s why they spent two years collaborating with the engineers at Fox to build the perfect rear shocks for their Knuckle Box bikes. Read more of this post


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