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James Buckroyd (Contributor) Post Archive

Product Geek: PDW’s Daybot is a locally designed, consciously crafted tail light

Wednesday, December 27th, 2017

The new Daybot from Portland Design Works.
(Photos by James Buckroyd)

— JBucky (James Buckroyd) is an avid cyclist and “product geek,” — he blogs at buckyrides.com which he set up to document interesting routes, but also houses product tech reviews. Read his past BikePortland contributions here.

Jbucky in his element.

Portland Design Works designs, engineers, markets and ships a growing assortment of bicycle accessories from their headquarters in southeast Portland. You might remember a while back I reviewed their Full Metal Fenders. The fenders are still going strong and I’ved used them on an almost daily basis for 13 months now. It’s a bomber setup.

But could they repeat that success with a light? Is a locally designed, consciously crafted bike light a fallacy?

I picked up one of their latest tail light models, the Daybot. I was impressed by the Daybot as a product, but also because it’s a local company. With a peak behind the scenes, I saw they had some some good ethical practices in place as well. The Daybot is a $35 rear light specifically designed so it’s effective during daylight hours, this means a switchable light mode where the output is higher so you go noticed during the day. 100 Lumens is the benchmark nowadays for daylight flashers.
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Product Review: Cool weather, USA made kit from Ornot

Tuesday, October 24th, 2017

Socks, Bib shorts and jersey colourways sync up for a put together look.
(Photos: James Buckroyd)

Pretty psyched for a change of season, I ordered up some new gear.

I needed some new colder weather kit and wanted to try something different, so I grabbed a few things from Ornot, a smaller San Fransisco company that has been around for about four years. Ornot’s brand stuck in my mind from the play on words in their clever marketing campaign: “You can be a rolling billboard, Ornot.” The whole point being that their kit has no logos, no sponsors, no massive branding. In the cycling world we’ve all been subjected to logos everywhere on cycling kit — some tastefully done, some not. Browsing through the website you see an array of products all with minimal branding and really nice patterns and designs.

I ordered up some winter bib shorts, a winter jersey and socks for the full matchy-match look.

Here are my impressions…
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Interbike 2017 show report: Trends and new products

Friday, September 29th, 2017

The bicycle industry’s annual trade show sets up in Las Vegas each year.
(Photos: James Buckroyd, usually)

James Buckroyd is a professional product designer who happens to be addicted to cycling and is always seeking out the perfect route and the perfect piece of gear. He blogs at BuckyRides.com. His last review was Chrome’s Hondo backpack.

Last week I headed to Interbike Vegas 2017, where cycling industry veterans gathered to show off the latest trends and technology in cycling. The first two days of Interbike were the “Outdoor Demo,” where cycling industry pros get to view and ride new bicycles, followed by three days of trade show. With three exhibition halls full of gear, Interbike gives you a glimpse of the future.

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Product Review: Chrome Welterweight Hondo Backpack

Monday, August 7th, 2017

The Hondo by Chrome, which is now a Portland-based company.
(Review and photos by James Buckroyd)

James Buckroyd is a professional product designer who happens to be addicted to cycling and is always seeking out the perfect route and the perfect piece of gear. He blogs at BuckyRides.com. His last review was the OttoLock.
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Portland born and raised, the OttoLock hits a bike security sweet spot

Thursday, July 20th, 2017

Surprisingly convenient and useful.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Q: What do you get when a cyclist, an engineer and a businessman walk into a bar?

A: A stolen bike.

At least that’s how the joke used to go before the OttoLock came along.

Designed and engineered in Wilsonville by Otto Designworks, the company got started in 2015 after a successful Kickstarter campaign for their first product: an app and tool that helped people adjust derailleurs. With the OttoLock, the company seems to have found its stride.

Word-of-mouth for the product ignited early on in large part because one of the idea generators and spokesmen is professional cyclist Jacob Rathe (whom you might recall from our story on him when he made the U.S. National Team in 2008). We first covered the OttoLock nearly a year ago when it was still in the prototype and design phase. Now that it’s starting to show up in bike shops around the country, it’s time for a closer look.

Here are my impressions after using it for several months…
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Product review: The Saltzman jersey from Anthm Collective

Tuesday, June 27th, 2017

The Saltzman jersey from Portland-based Anthm Collective.
(Photos: James Buckroyd)

By our newest contributor, James Buckroyd.

In the world of product development, this is how it usually goes: You have a great idea, you make contact with an agent in Hong Kong or Mainland China and you start in a series of negotiations. After many long e-mail chains and late-night phone calls you begin to develop a product.

Unfortunately, what gets lost in the back-and-forths with the factory are the fine details that are essential to make the product shine in an ever-demanding consumer market. As you view sample after sample from your offshore agent, you realize things aren’t as perfect as you’d like them to be.

Rewind the tape. Enter Brian Anthony of Portland-based Anthm Collective.

“Basically we wanted gear to ride in that represented the values we believe in,” he shared with us recently. “So we went out and made it.”
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