Holiday Sale at Western Bikeworks

Industry Ticker: Chrome’s knife roll, PDW’s smart taillight, Breadwinner Cafe, and waterproof gloves from Showers Pass

By on December 18th, 2017 at 10:53 am

Here’s our latest peek into the ever-changing landscape of people, places and products that make up Portland’s local bike industry…

Chef’s Knife Roll from Chrome Industries

(Photos: Chrome)

You probably know Chrome for their excellent bags and apparel, but did you know about their new knife roll? The Portland-based company that recently moved their headquarters to Portland (from San Francisco) teamed up with local celebrity chef Chris Cosentino (of Jackrabbit restaurant fame) to create this heavy-duty cooking implement carrier. This could take grilling-by-bike and summer BBQ’s during Pedalpalooza to the next level!

Here’s the official word from Chrome:

When we sat down to create a chef’s knife roll we called up Chris Cosentino first thing. A renowned chef with a passion for bikes and our neighbor in San Francisco with Cockscomb and now Portland with Jackrabbit, Chris worked with us to hone every detail, from pockets to pen-slots, of this knife roll. Built from the same 1050d nylon and heavy duty tarpaulin as our durable messenger bags, this is a chef’s knife roll designed for the everyday hard use of work in a kitchen.

— Made in Chico, California.
— $125
— Three utility pockets
— Fits 11 knives up to 17”
— Snap closure flaps for safety
— Cinch-down clip straps
— Pen slots
— Quick-access business card pocket
— Offset handle for blade/handle balance
— 9″ x 10″ (Rolled) / 19″ x 27.25″ (Open)

New “smart” Gravity tail light from Portland Design Works

It’s smart enough to know when you slow down.

Why hasn’t anyone done this sooner? The new Gravity tail light from PDW is an affordable and functional brake light for bikes. At just $40, this beauty, “has a built-in accelerometer that detects deceleration or swerving and automatically changes it to a super bright 100 lumen solid beam.” That’s pretty smart.

Watch this video to see it in action:

Here’s the official word:

The Gravity Tail Light has a built-in accelerometer that detects deceleration or swerving and automatically changes to a super bright, solid beam to warn following traffic. To allow the accelerometer to calibrate, always install the Gravity on your bike before powering it on. Hold your bike still for 1 second after pressing the power button to complete the calibration.


— Automatic accelerometer brake light function shines 100 lumens bright
— 2 Modes (runtime): Solid – 20 lumens (12 hours), Flash – 80 lumens (30 hours)
— USB rechargeable li-polymer battery
— Weatherproof exterior for all season riding
— Includes brackets for seatpost and seatstay mounting
— Mounts vertically or horizontally
— Includes Micro USB recharging cord

The soon-to-be Breadwinner Cafe

Plans of the new cafe seen on Breadwinner’s Instagram feed.

The dynamic bike-building duo of Tony Pereira and Ira Ryan are about to take their Breadwinner Cycles business to another level with the opening of a new cafe! Located on Portland’s busiest bike street, the new Breadwinner Cafe on N Williams at Page (across from Metropolis Cycles) will have a very soft opening for friends and partners tomorrow (Tuesday, December 19th). The official opening will follow shortly. To get the inside scoop on what will certainly become one of the most popular ride meet-up spots and hangouts, follow BreadwinnerCafePDX on Instagram.

Shower Pass’ latest waterproof item

A bold photo. And they come in black too.

First they kept your body dry with their ubiquitous jackets. Then they moved onto hats and socks. Now Showers Pass has a new model of gloves that borrow their popular “Crosspoint” waterproof sock technology and we think this could be their biggest hit yet. The Crosspoint Waterproof Knit gloves ($45) are guaranteed “fully waterproof”. And unlike their other gloves, the Crosspoints are lightweight. That means you won’t overheat.

Here’s the official word:

Don’t let cold wet hands ruin your outdoor fun! We developed our Lightweight Waterproof Knit Gloves to solve the soggy digits problem and keep your hands dry while cycling, running, hiking and any outdoor adventuring in the rain. Our gloves are fully waterproof with 3 bonded layers: a wear resistant knit exterior that feels like a regular knit glove, a waterproof-breathable Artex membrane, and a Coolmax moisture-wicking antibacterial knit lining. Silicone print on the palm offers a better grip in wet conditions.

These gloves are legit. I’ve used a pair for about a month now and they work great. Excellent grip and not bulky, with a nice balance of warmth/weather protection and breathability. Bring on the rain!

If your company has news or new products to share, please get in touch. We’d love to feature you in our next roundup.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and

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The Monday Roundup: Senator scofflaw, self-driving slowdown, women racer challenges, and more

By on December 18th, 2017 at 9:42 am

Happy Monday everyone. I was out of town visiting family for a few days last week (you might have noticed the lack of posts), so this week’s Roundup is a bit spare.

Here are the best stories I read and bumped into thanks to reader submissions…

Adding immunity to injury: An interesting legal case from Illinois found that municipalities don’t have blanket immunity to lawsuits for poorly maintained bike paths (but it’s still hard to find them liable).

Auto industry is not dumb: The post-millenial generation might not be gung-ho about owning a car right when they turn 16; but don’t let that fool you into thinking the auto industry will retract its claws from them. Not a chance.

Shop while you drive: GM’s suite of car brands now has a “Marketplace” option for their dashboard screens that allows drivers to shop and order items while they f’ing drive. What could possibly go wrong?

Drive better > dress better: Hell of a lede on this news story from British Columbia: “Moments after receiving a safety reflector designed to help increase pedestrian visibility, a Victoria-area man was struck by a car in downtown Sidney.”

Mom/racer balancing act: Women who dedicate their lives to racing bikes often don’t menstruate until they retire and that can weigh heavily on family-planning options.

Senator scofflaw: New York State Senator Marty Golden has landed in hot water for allegedly impersonating a cop after hitting a bicycle rider, then fleeing the scene through a red light. Add in his 10 school zone speeding violations and the fact that the person he hit was a transit activist and community board member and you’ve got a perfect storm of car culture karma.

Quick/easy/cheap bus-only lane: Boston’s transit authority wanted to speed up bus traffic so they simply placed some orange cones to create a dedicated lane. It worked great. So simple. So easy. PBOT and TriMet, are you listening?

Perspective matters: Another reason to encourage bicycle use is that the simple act of pedaling has been shown to make people safer drivers.

Self-driving vaporware: Oh look, a major automaker has delayed their rollout of self-driving features — which will only fan the flames of people who are skeptical of the zeal for our AV/self-driving future.

Thanks to everyone who shared links this week.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and

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It’s BikeCraft weekend: Here are a few fabulous finds from opening night

By on December 16th, 2017 at 9:10 am

Makeshifter bags, Sketchy Trails art, 1 by Liz clocks, panniers from Market Mule. Oh my!
(Photos: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

BikeCraft is back and we couldn’t be happier. This event — which is open all weekend — celebrates local, bike-inspired arts and crafts. It started in 2005 and has come roaring back this year thanks to an organizational boost from our friends Elly Blue and Joe Biel from Microcosm Publishing and Brian Echerer from Velo Gioielli.

Last night was a special preview party and benefit for event host The Bike Farm (1810 NE 1st, two blocks from Broadway/Williams). I swung through to chat with vendors and see the wonderful things they make and sell.

Below is just a sample…
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Meet the BikeCrafters: Liz Carlis, Tomas Quinones, and Chris Chapman

By on December 12th, 2017 at 11:38 am

Just three days until the big Friday preview party and BikeCraft weekend!

In case you haven’t heard, Portland’s bike-centric holiday gift fair is back. BikeCraft 2017 is December 15-17 at the Bike Farm (1810 NE 1st Ave.) and it’s powered by Microcosm Publishing.

To get you ready, our friend Elly Blue (Microcosm’s co-owner and marketing director) has been profiling the fantastic people behind the crafts (see the all of them here). Below are three more BikeCrafters you’ll get to meet at the big event. (Note: This is the final post in this series. See you at the event!)
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Guest post: Embracing fear (and tips to feel it less often)

By on December 12th, 2017 at 10:08 am

Happiness is a new bike. 1990.
(Photos courtesy Eva Frazier)

This post was written by Eva Frazier, co-owner of Clever Cycles.

“I’m tired of being told to be safe/ride safe/stay safe. I want to have fun.”

I grew up in a quaint little town called Rhinebeck, about 90 miles north of New York City in the Hudson Valley. I started riding a bike as a little girl, somewhere around 3 years old. As soon as my folks let me, I started riding my bike to school. Most days I could beat the school bus, though, in the winter, my freshly washed hair would freeze on the way in. The bicycle was my ticket to freedom. Because I was living in a small town, I was allowed a wide territory to roam by myself, no questions asked. As long as I made it home by dinner, I could ride my bike anywhere I pleased. Most summer days I would go to the pool. Some days my dad, brother and I would take an 8 mile loop out to Rhinecliff and back. Sometimes I would ride up the Knollwood hill and then come flying back down, seeing how far I could coast before pedaling. I didn’t wear a helmet and all I carried was a puny little chain lock wrapped around my seatpost. Perhaps I was naive, or maybe I lived in some sort of paradise, but I never felt unsafe or scared.
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Remembering Vera Katz, through her statue and her Esplanade

By on December 11th, 2017 at 5:18 pm

Hott Sock Ride-12

The Vera Katz statue (just right of center) is the centerpiece of this group photo from the 2012 Hott Sock Ride that took place during Pedalpalooza.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Former Portland Mayor Vera Katz has died at age 84. She was a three-term mayor who led our city from 1993 to 2005.

As reported by The Willamette Week, she was Portland’s “last successful mayor.”
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Oregon bike tax is coming: Here are a few quirks in the law and how shops feel about it

By on December 11th, 2017 at 1:14 pm

Final days at The Missing Link bike shop-3

(Photos: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Oregon’s infamous $15 bicycle excise tax goes into effect in just 20 days.

On January 1st, bicycle retailers across the state will have to be registered with the Department of Revenue (DOR) and have systems in place to collect and record the fee. To help make sure shops are ready, DOR has sent notices in the mail and has set up a website with more information.

We’ve been in touch with many Portland-based bike shops to hear how they’re feeling about it. So far we’ve heard a range of opinions. Some shop owners disagree with the tax in principle and/or have concerns about how it will impact their business, while others don’t think it’ll be that big of a deal.

As for the tax itself, the first order of business from the State’s perspective is to educate retailers. In a letter (PDF) sent to shops on December 4th, the DOR laid out the basics of the tax and offered answers to several frequently asked questions.
[Read more…]

The Monday Roundup: Bike highways in London and Cleveland, blaming bad driving, a bike racing lifer, and more

By on December 11th, 2017 at 9:07 am

Here are the best things we came across last week…

This week’s Monday Roundup is sponsored by Tigr Lock, a strong and lightweight solution to protect your bike from thieves.

A bike racing “lifer”: Bill Elliston’s lifelong dedication to racing bikes and helping other people get into the sport is worth every word of this longform piece from Peter Flax at

Meet Seattle’s top advocrat: Seattle’s chief traffic engineer Dongho Chang got a profile in the Seattle Times for his work to, “to make Seattle’s streets safer, more efficient.” (He’s also a fun follow on Twitter at @dongho_chang.)

Blame it on the rock: I’ll just leave this here: “Drivers can’t seem to stop hitting a giant rock in a suburban parking lot, despite it being an inanimate object surrounded by yellow-painted curbs.”
[Read more…]

New ownership for Worst Day of the Year and other popular Portland rides

By on December 8th, 2017 at 1:02 pm

Worst Day of the Year Ride 2011-1

Start of 2011 Worst Day of the Year Ride.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

Portland-based Axiom Event Productions has purchased four major local bike rides.

The company, which launched in 2013 when it earned the exclusive contract to manage the City of Portland’s Sunday Parkways events, is now in charge of putting on the Worst Day of the Year Ride, Petal Pedal, Tour de Lab, and the Portland Century. They’ll be operated by Events by Axiom, LLC.

Axiom purchased the events from their previous owner, Good Sport Promotion. Also in included in the sale is, a website that promotes cycling and events statewide. Good Sport’s owner Porter Childs has started a new business selling custom bike jerseys.
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Opinion: Willamette’s new bike lanes are already outdated

By on December 8th, 2017 at 11:08 am

Despite the fact that Portland has fallen way off the pace when it comes to building physically protected bike lanes, we continue to build “new” bikeways with nothing more than paint and hope.

That’s why I’m so ambivalent about the new striping on North Willamette Blvd.
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Meet the BikeCrafters: Straight Gauge Studios, Gigi’s Handy Work, and The People’s Clowns (Olive and Dingo!)

By on December 7th, 2017 at 4:48 pm

Just one week to go!

In case you haven’t heard, Portland’s bike-centric holiday gift fair is back! BikeCraft 2017 is December 15-17 at the Bike Farm (1810 NE 1st Ave.) and it’s powered by Microcosm Publishing.

To get you ready, our friend Elly Blue (Microcosm’s co-owner and marketing director) has been profiling the fantastic people behind the crafts (see the all of them here). Below are the latest three BikeCrafters you’ll get to meet at the big event…
[Read more…]

PBOT “still committed” to Lincoln-Harrison project despite aggressive opposition at open house

By on December 7th, 2017 at 12:31 pm

“We are still strongly committed to the project. But it is clear that some additional community engagement is necessary.”
— John Brady, PBOT director of communications

After what was described by readers as an “ugly scene” where some attendees acted with “strong hostility and aggression,” at an open house on Tuesday night, the Portland Bureau of Transportation said they now plan to extend the public process for their Lincoln-Harrison Neighborhood Greenway Enhancement Project.

The main sticking of the project are plans for semi-diverters that would prohibit people in cars from turning onto Lincoln from 50th. Dozens of readers who attended the open house said it was taken over by neighborhood residents who are vehemently opposed to the diverters. In comments (that are still coming in) they recount a “mob” scene where people where being shouted down, intimidated, and ultimately silenced by anti-diverter advocates who allegedly took over the meeting.

Asked today whether the project will continue as planned, PBOT Communications Director John Brady told us that, “We are still strongly committed to the project.” However, Brady added that opposition to the diverters means PBOT needs to make some course corrections. “But it is clear that some additional community engagement is necessary,” Brady added. “We believe we can do this engagement and still implement the project as planned by next summer.”
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Portland Art Museum returns to council today, seeking rights to build on Madison Plaza

By on December 7th, 2017 at 11:06 am

Portland Art Museum Rendering of new Rothko Pavillion that will enclose Madison Plaza.

With eight-months to respond to vehement opposition, the Portland Art Museum’s plans for their $50 million Rothko Pavillion didn’t change much, so the response from its many critics hasn’t changed either.

That’s where we find ourselves today as museum leaders head to City Council to try and pass an ordinance (PDF) that will ultimately allow them to enclose what is currently an open plaza on SW Madison between 10th Avenue and the Park Blocks. (Note: PAM already effectively owns the plaza, but only under conditions of an easement controlled by the City of Portland.)

As we reported last month, PAM’s Executive Director Brian Ferriso came to a joint meeting of the City’s Bicycle Advisory Committee (BAC) and Pedestrian Advisory Committee to ask for support for the plans. Committee members hoped to see a proposal with more details about how the museum’s plans would impact the free movement of walkers and rollers through the plaza. But Ferriso didn’t share any new design details. His new pitch was an expansion of museum access hours and a reversal of their previous ban on bikes and pets altogether.
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Woman killed in Beaverton bike lane last week lost her brother to Portland hit-and-run last year

By on December 7th, 2017 at 10:20 am

Stanley and Helen Grochowski.
(Photo Left: Portland Police Bureau/Photo right: Susan Putnam-Jensen)

When I first heard about the fatal collision in Beaverton near Southridge High School last week I was sad. But that was before I made a heartbreaking realization.
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Weekend Event Guide: Toy drive ride, bike-to-BBQ, Holiday Express, and more

By on December 7th, 2017 at 9:19 am

Bike the Lights night at Winter Wonderland-13.jpg

(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland

Hope you’re enjoying this dry and sunny weather of late. This weekend will still be cold, but with no rain in the forecast it’s time to seize the cycling opportunities.

And of course it’s that time of year for holiday merriment. Whether you’re a good-hearted Grinch like the guy above, or you just want to ride with friends, we’ve got some good options for you to consider…
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Bike shop news roundup: Portland Bicycle Studio, Holy Spokes, and Orenco Station Cyclery call it quits

By on December 6th, 2017 at 10:50 am

Holy Spokes on Division is no more.
(Photo: Holy Spokes/Instagram)

To sustain a small bike shop has never been easy. If you did it in the past few years during this downturn in the U.S. bike industry, it was even tougher. That’s just one lesson we can take away from three shop owners in our region that decided to close their doors last month: Holy Spokes on SE Division, Portland Bicycle Studio/3928 Bike Shop on N Williams, and Orenco Station Cyclery in Hillsboro.

All three of these shops opened in the past three years.

Tim Ennis opened Holy Spokes at SE Division and 31st in July of 2014. It was the brick-and-mortar version of his Rolling Wrench mobile bike shop business. The neighborhood shop focused on repair, daily riders, and carfree families. On November 10th he announced to customers on Facebook that, “The time has come to close our doors. It’s been fun but it’s time for new adventures.” We reached out to Ennis to learn more about his decision but have yet to hear back. Holy Spokes is now having a closing sale. Check the shop’s website for the latest deals and updates.

If you were a Holy Spokes customer, check out A Better Cycle (2324 SE Division St), Seven Corners (3218 SE 21st Ave) or Joe Bike (2039 SE Cesar E Chavez Blvd.).
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Reports: PBOT’s Lincoln-Harrison greenway meeting goes off the rails

By on December 5th, 2017 at 9:59 pm

PBOT’s proposal for diverter at 50th.

Remember earlier today when I told you tonight’s PBOT open house for the Lincoln-Harrison Neighborhood Greenway Enhancement project might get interesting? Well from what we’re hearing so far, interesting doesn’t even describe it.

I wasn’t there, but several sources are reporting that it was completely bonkers. The crowd that’s vehemently opposed to a diverter at 50th and Lincoln was apparently very aggressive and nearly took over the meeting.

Here’s what what we’ve gleaned so far about how it went from emails, comments and tweets:

Aaron I:

“It was a disaster. They never should have agreed to give a presentation and let the pitchforks form around them.”

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This podcast episode will change how you think about traffic collisions

By on December 5th, 2017 at 12:18 pm

From the other side-2

It’s not often we’ll do a post on BikePortland only to highlight someone else’s content. But several readers shared something with me recently that I feel is well worth everyone’s time.

Whether you fashion yourself a community leader, an activist, a politician, or simply a caring human being — we become better versions of those things when we broaden our perspectives and consider new ones. That was one of things I took away after listening to episode 12 of the Heavyweight podcast.

The episode is titled, “Jesse” and it was hosted and produced by Jonathan Goldstein. It follows the story of a Portland resident who was hit by a driver while biking across a street. The collision nearly killed him; but it also led to his rebirth. The story as told by Goldstein would be strong enough on its own; but what makes this episode so good is he interviews the people involved — on both sides of the windshield.
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Fate of traffic calming on Lincoln-Harrison hangs in balance at open house tonight

By on December 5th, 2017 at 11:03 am

This is what PBOT wants to install on both sides of SE Lincoln at 50th.

I’m sensing a disturbance in the Force. Various respected sources and a general feeling of uneasiness in my bones tells me that tonight’s open house for the City of Portland’s Lincoln-Harrison Neighborhood Greenway Enhancement project will be very consequential.

In other words, there’s auto traffic diversion on the table — specifically a duo of semi-diverters on Lincoln on both sides of 50th — and a lot of very loud and very angry people are opposed to them. Yes, there are lots of people who support the diverters at 50th, but from what I’ve heard the nos have it.

As we reported last month, the Mt Tabor Neighborhood Association voted 45-5 against the diverters at 50th. And that opposition has continued. Yesterday someone went door-to-door and passed out this flyer:
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Oregon now has an interscholastic mountain bike racing league

By on December 4th, 2017 at 4:59 pm

It’s official! Love that logo.

Ever wished your child could compete on a cycling team based at their school? Now they can.

Today the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) announced that Oregon is the latest state to join what is already a bustling league with 800 school-based teams, 14,500 student athletes and 6,000 licensed coaches nationwide. NICA is a nonprofit founded in 2009 with a mission to use cycling as a way to foster a healthy lifestyle for young people in 6th through 12th grades. States with existings programs include: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Idaho, Maryland, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Northern California, Pennsylvania, Southern California, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

Heather Wolfgang will be director of the new Interscholastic Oregon Cycling league. Wolfgang recently moved to Portland from the San Francisco Bay Area where she helped grow the Norcal High School Cycling League, which boasts over 1,200 student-athlete members and is one of the largest NICA leagues in the country.

“A lot of people say that they wish they had something like this when they were in high school because of how inclusive and fun it is,” Wolfgang said in a NICA statement. “What we’ll be able to do is bring teens of all abilities, experiences, and backgrounds into the same space to create a truly unique experience. My favorite part of this organization is that we’ll help show teens what they’re capable of through riding bikes. I’m honored to be involved with the Oregon League and look forward to building up our youth cycling community across the state!”
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