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Platypus aftermath

Holy moly the 50 and 55cm frames went quickly; we sold over 50 framesets in 5 minutes. It certainly seems like we're on the cusp of a new level of popularity and that's exciting, but if this continues (and I hope it will) 2021 will be the first year our supply doesn't meet the demand. I love that our bikes are selling, but I absolutely can't stand it when someone who was waiting for one misses out.

I used to feel like I knew everybody in San Francisco with a Rivendell, but lately I've been spying people I've never seen before on Clems, Sams, and the rest. It's a real treat every time. Just yesterday I got on Bart and there was someone on the train with a "Riv'd Out" Surly and when they got up to get off, I realized they were wearing a Nothing's Greater hoody. Shout out to you, whoever you are, you made my morning.

We've re-worked our purchase orders for 2022 for more frames than we've ever had before and that'll help fix the concert ticket, sold-out-in-seconds frame sales we've had and will probably continue to have for the rest of 2021.

We're down to just 60cm Platy frames in Mermaid.

Appaloosas are next up, and we'll likely have them on the site in early May. A lot of folks asked if the Suez canal situation will delay the bikes further - No reports about that so far, but I do think all those boats that were blocked up behind the Evergiven will arrive back in Taiwan at around the same time so some berth congestion wouldn't surprise me, not that I'm an expert.

Old news now, but I love this pic:
What a perfect visual to sum up the world since the pandemic started. The size of container ships is mind boggling and, for some reason I can't put my finger on, a little scary.

In other pandemic news, the Riv staff is approaching full inoculation. Grant, Mary, Rich, Mark and James are all vaccinated and everbody else at least as their first shot scheduled. I'm getting mine this weekend at Waterworld in Concord which used to be the place to go to get diseases. Vince says they put everybody in the lazy river, give you a shot and a little spin as you float by.

This means we'll be reverting to our old 8am to 4pm schedule sometime in May and in early June we'll bring back Saturday shifts too. More news on that later.

BRF Mugs

We got some mugs made in St. Paul, Minnesota in four colors. The BRF has, sadly, become an acronym for "Bikes R Fun", but $24 of each mug sale will still go to a charity that'll do some good. Get one here.

Panda Monarchs

We hired a temp, Antonio, to disassemble and reassemble 50 pairs Monarch pedals into the variation shown above. We're calling them Panda Monarchs and I don't know if we'll do them again, so get 'em while they're hot.

They cost $15 more because it's kind of a PITA to do.

Mailbox heavy Blahg

Grant has a new one up with tons of mailbox submissions. The one above is from my friend James in Santa Barbara. This gem is on a mellow road ride we do when I'm down there and we always stop to check it out. Here's the view from the front:
Check out the rest of the boxes here. Other features:
  • Some cross-eyed hawk pix
  • A nutritious but gross looking lunch
  • Some hazy lens bike-pics on Tam
  • This quote "I am tempted by late-night infomercials, especially for that can  opener that takes the top off cans and creates a smooth-edged top to it that comes on and off with the satisfying sound of a suction plop. But then I'd miss the extreme satisfaction of the circular blade turned by gears that move with a lever, just like a bicycle. It is GENIUS and I know it, and yet I'm still drawn to the thing that would turn me into a can hoarder, because why throw away a scrubbed-clean, non-smelly tin-coated steel can with a smooth, tight-fitting lid? I know this is inconsistent with my tastes in bicycles."

Let's all take a moment to write down our serial numbers

Bikes are getting stolen like crazy around here, especially out of garages in San Francisco. Friend Bram's Appaloosa was stolen earlier this week and was recovered the same day when other friend Eric confronted a guy riding it around on Market street. Eric paid the guy $20 and got back the bike along with Bram's jacket and gloves, which the guy was wearing. I don't know if the guy that accepted the $20 was the one that stole it out of Bram's garage (seems kinda low for the risk involved), but at least it ended OK.

Story #2, which happened on the same day is even better:
Roman found friend Andre's Sam locked up on the street and, after figuring out that it had been stolen a couple months back, waited around to confront the guy who was riding it. It turns out the guy who was riding it was totally innocent, in Roman's words "really sweet", and had bought the bike from the flea market to get to and from his grocery store job after his own bike had been stolen. Roman generously volunteered his Bosco'd, basket'd Trek as a trade for Andre's Sam and all parties left happy. What a guy! Andre had his serial number handy and that sealed the deal.

So please write down your serial numbers. We don't keep them on file at Rivendell, but they're etched into your bottom bracket shell. Take a phone photo of it and file it away somewhere.

Soap re-stock

Pine tar soap-on-ropes are back in stock, along with Lord Olivier's Liquorice soap and the gritty, get-the-bike-grease-off peppermint bars.

We also still
have a good stock of Grandpas, if you prefer your pine tar a little more tame.
Oh my lord, I love Blue Lug. This looks too fun, I wish I could have been there.

Back in stock 4/9/21

dynamo stuff
wald baskets
- medium silver

I've been slowly learning how to build wheels under Rich's tutelage. It's tough to learn because I don't personally need a lot of wheels and I don't trust myself yet to build for other people. I might start undoing existing wheels and re-building them just to get more practice.

There's a lot of variables to look out for (tension, lateral true, vertical true, and dish) and adjusting one maddeningly throws off another. I end up going around and around in circles trying to get every variable right, but I don't yet have Rich's magic touch for it. The worst is dish, when everything is perfect and just the dish is slightly off...argh! Despite all the frustration, it's still fun to learn something new, especially something that requires time and effort and neat tools. I look forward to the day when I can build up nice wheels for my friends and trust that they'll stay true.

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