The original Cycle Services Newsletters are all still online HERE – but this is going to be one huge blog post with the whole lot,  just because modern searching tends to favour having a truckload of stuff on one webpage, and we don’t give a toss about bandwidth anymore, so why not?



Starting with this one, we are planning to bring out a newsletter each month. We intend having information about upcoming races, good rides, technical and product reviews, and any other entertaining stuff. If you have anything that would be good for the next newsletter please drop it in. (Especially cycling cartoons and bizarre stories).


Cycle Services has now been open for two years (we opened 1 Feb 1991). This year we were thinking of moving into the vacant Smith City showroom and having 4000 new bikes on display, but our customers have convinced us to stay small, and also we didn’t want to put Midnight Espresso out of business by moving all their clientele away. To all our regular customers who keep coming back – Thanks heaps and keep on destroying those bikes.


Hot word action from Cycle Services:

Going off: good, works well, looks good

“That $8000 Marin Team Titanium FRS goes off !”

Hot action: an especially going off example of some kind of activity

“Hot downhill crash action !”

Tosser: Not going off dude who is not capable of any hot action

“Look, that tosser on the Raleigh 20 just fell off in the gutter”


The first in a series of rider profiles on customers who “Live to Ride” – what makes the hardcore rider tick ? Here is psychological insight to help budding “hell riders” go from tossing to thrashing:

Name : Craig Anderson

Nickname : Bugle

Suburb : Red Light Central (Marion St), Wellington

Occupation:Roadie (Musical) Age :23

Bike : Diamondback (Well, the frame is)

Components : Shimano, Mavic, Araya, Selle Italia, Richley, Panaracer, Mt Zefal, Gaffer Tape

Extras : J bars, pump, bottles, Custom “Wheels” Shoulder Strap

Most awesome ride/race : Belmont Reserve, Johnson’s Hill, The ELEVATOR

Other favourite rides :Mt Climie, Wrights Hill short track, Eastbourne hills

Favourite Food : Pasta, powerbars, espresso, tequila, chicken, spuds, fish

Favourite Music:Pixies, Tom Waits, Bad Brains, Suicidal Tendencies or anything else decidedly alternative, jazz hip hop x-over

Favourite Films:

Vampire’s Kiss, Akira, anything by Jim Jarmusch, Brazil, Ford Fairlane, The Cook The Thief

His Wife and Her Lover

Favourite Books/Mags: Sci Fi, anything with MTB or Naked Women, Gary Larsen

Ambitions/Aspirations : Pay my acc at Cycle Services, Ride to the top of Mt Climie without stopping more than once, Get rich, Die spectacularly

Hot Comment Action: Live to eat. Just cause you’re not paranoid, don’t mean we’re not after U. Don’t eat shellfish. Team Nihilist – one for one, one for one. No Hope, No Fear


Belmont Trig to Korokoro, via Baked Beans Bend

To make this ride more epic, we chose a day with torrential rain and a ripping southerly. Starting at Stratton St carpark (where we left a car and trailer) we rode at a grovelly but determined pace up to Belmont Trig, where the business could begin. The long wet grass meant there were some going off crashes right from the outset, as complete brake failure lead to out of control careering down the steep bits, and frequently the only way to slow down was to slam into some bushes.

The track was a bit overgrown, but all rideable, although a couple of bits, like the tight tree root technical section near the top, we didn’t manage to ride without hitting a few trees, and crashing a bit.

Once past the Baked Beans Bend the track is flatter but all gradual downhill. Some major drops down into the Korokoro stream beside the narrow track made for exciting near misses, until one of us clipped the bank and fell off a 30 foot vertical drop upside down. Fortunately he lived. Note: Extra wide handlebars are not really the go for this ride.

Coming out at the bottom in Cornish St, we picked up the no 2 car and went and got the first car and trailer from Stratton St. Stauncher riders who didn’t want to use two cars could either ride up through Belmont on the road, or ride up both Korokoro and Baked Beans, and then back down again. Just up from Baked Beans turnoff is the Korokoro dam, which is also worth a look for scenic action. Watch out for walkers !

MARCH 1993

Newsletter #2

A DISCLAIMER – Everything in this newsletter has been submitted to us by anonymous contributors. We at Cycle Services do not encourage wild or irresponsible riding, or the reckless destruction of equipment. We also recommend that correct use of vocabulary should be strictly adhered to, to drink carrot juice, and to abstain from alcohol (and any other stimulants). We suspect that our anonymous contributors are not really mountain bikers at all, but are actually undercover road posers attempting to infiltrate and undermine the serious sport of mountain biking.


There is a saying that talent makes up for a lack of money, better than money makes up for a lack of talent. This especially applies to bicycles. Putting suspension forks on a bike won’t make you a fast downhiller if your brakes are gutless. When it comes to going fast and still being in control, brakes are the # 1 hot item.

It’s not that important what kind of brakes you have – any Shimano ones will do. If you have ones that say “Dia Compe”, or something like “Hsin Wah Fong”, you should burn them and get some Shimano ones. What’s more important is the state of the brake pads and the way the brakes are set up.

Sadly, most brake pads wear out much faster off road than people expect. A four-hour ride in the mud can completely wear out a brand new pair of pads – e.g., riding once around the Karapoti in the rain can destroy your pads. What this means is that most mountain bikes have worn out pads. As a rough rule of thumb, they need to be replaces once half the brake pads have worn away. We have had a lot of bikes that have had the metal base of the pad rubbing on the rim causing the whole side of the rim to wear out and blow off. This is best avoided. Brake pads should be set up with around 2mm of toe in, to avoid squealing, and for maximum leverage, straddle wires at right angles to the brake arm – see diagram.

Recommended replacement brake pads include the Raleigh Shimano copies at around $6 a pair, and Aztec high performance pads at $17 a pair.



Hot Word Action From Cycle Services :



(pronunciation varies from “see you” to “sioo”)

Not going off, thrashed, wasted, useless, demoed, cheap, undesirable, not happening

“Ever since my bike got run over by a bus, it’s been totally C.U. “

“Those ‘Ferrano Mountain Pig’ mountain bikes from The Warehouse are just C.U. “

Can also be used for people: “Mr C.U. is a tosser” or as a replacement for “See you later” etc



Going out on the edge, riding to the limit, loose going off high speed action, going fast without crashing

“All the tossers crashed on the downhill, but Team Nihilist was shralving”


From hell

An extra good example of whatever is being discussed – makes going off stuff better, and C.U. stuff worse.

“There goes a C.U. bogan tosser from hell” – very derogatory

“John Tomac is a hot. Shralving, going off, hardcore action thrasher from hell” – very complimentary


The business

Getting on with the vital act – riding a 10 foot vert, blasting down The Elevator, doing what everybody else is standing around looking at and waiting for somebody else to do.

“Let’s do the business”


Geoff Marsland from Havana Coffee likes to do the business in our doorway


Leppin Squeezy. Long Chain Carbohydrate Polymer, known as wallpaper paste or elephant spoof. One of the little squeezy sachets contains roughly half the energy of a power bar, and takes only a fraction of the time to eat. They look gross, but they do the business and at $1.30 each they are cheaper than eating energy bars. Don’t be put off by the fact that they don’t resemble food – it’s more like eating flavoured elephant spoof. So don’t BONK – raise your intramuscular glycogen levels with enzymatic partial hydrolysate of maize starch! Available in lemon/lime, vanilla and peach flavours.




Name Adrian ‘N’
Nickname Virgil
Age 22
Suburb Khandallah
Occupation Jim Bolger MTB Team/Painter/Student
Bike Marin
Components XT Shimano, Mavic, Mt Zefal, Panaracer, Specialized, Giant
Extras Sony Walkman, Revo Sunglasses, pump, bottles, Hacky sac, lots of tools, a pipe
Most awesome ride/race Definitely The Elevator, Ngamu Forest, Hawkins Hill, Mt Kau Kau
Other favourite rides Tinakori Hill, Wrights Hill, Johnsons. Anywhere roadie can’t go, verts, high speed, Bot gardens heinous track
Favourite food Tons of pasta, potatoes, steak, steak, steak, Chinese (not seedy takeaways), Jack Daniels in any shape or form, cake, pizza, salad, mostly anything that’s not moving
Favourite music Cult, Soundgarden, Led Zeppelin, Hallelujah Picassos, Linton Kwesi Johnson, MC  900ft Jesus, Jane’s Addiction; whatever’s playing when you’re partying hard, it doesn’t matter
Favourite films Liquid Sky, Apocalypse Now, Withnail & I, Surfing vids, The Good The Bad and the Ugly, My Own Private Idaho
Favourite books/mags Joseph Conrad, L Ron Hubbard, Tolkien, Asimov, Surfer, MTB Mags, Dr Hunter S Thompson, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Raymond E Feist, July 1992 Penthouse
Ambitions/aspirations To remember an entire night when with Nihilists, Henry, Oli & Wheels ! Stop hitting moving cars, get out of overdraft, no bimbos !
Hot comment action Extreme, life’s too short not to be

If you can, you will; Team NihilistTerminal velocityThe body is evil, it shall be punished

Don’t forget your zigzags !


Picture this, a heavy night and an earlyish morning rise to go riding with nine other guys hell bent on being first up and down everything that resembled a hill. Well, it turns out that the evening before was a little heavier than everyone thought. Grovelling home from the hours of a measly 9pm for Wheels who was racing on Sunday, to grand effort of 3.30am for Steve F (the hardest man on earth). A few quiets out the back of C.S. led us to Magpie Lawn where we to liaise with Johnny, Oli (really a roadie, but generally a humourous kinda chap) and Wheels, an observer extremist almost voyeuristic who loves to kick back and chill.

2pm Saturday afternoon, an appalling game of Hacky with motivation at sub-zero level, riding great distances was not looking good. What, no gut bashing ride, what’s that I hear you say, “Softcocks !” Well, you see, attempting to play tag at high speed on a mountain bike is not easy, especially when endo’s, dabbing and full on over the handle bars is an every second possibility. There was one vicious single track come vert that was attempted several times by only five of the boys. Steve F put out the challenge, with Brendan going over the bars and almost off a ten-foot drop. Johnny put in a fine attempt face planting at everyone’s feet – classic stuff. Luckily no serious damage, apart from ego and a little blood.

Bike tag resumed, until Steve F snapped his handlebar stem, yeah his handlebar stem. He claimed Hellman status, while everyone decided on closer inspection that the only part of the hardest man on earth was what he was holding in his hand ! Oliver Twist, think laterally fine readers, bled the most, how typical of a roadie. The unfortunate thing was he gained the most sympathy on a typical roadie pose ride back through town to C.S. It would seem that Midnight was almost closed until ten cups and saucers mysteriously disappeared, it seems that their daily take had almost doubled. And that was that, nothing mind bogglingly heinous, just another typical ride in the day and the life of a mountain biker.




MAY 1993

Newsletter #3

What do you guys do with these newsletters ? Is this some kind of cult ? With groupies hanging out for the next newsletter and getting stressed out because April is late, we can only conclude that punters are hanging out to find out how to GO OFF … Sorry it’s late. Lateness is really seventies, man. CU lateness. April never existed. This is the May newsletter. And it’s early. Because here at Cycle Services we say “Why put off to today, what you can do yesterday”


SADDLES : There is such a proliferation of bizarre saddle angles that we feel compelled to draw attention to a basic principle of saddles…

*** FLAT ***

As in level, not sticking upwards or downwards. One of those things with a bubble floating in the middle may be useful to check this.Why ? 1. Greg Lemond says so2. Weight distributionA downwards sloping saddle puts extra weight on the wrists and arms, and forces weight onto the front wheel, making the bike heavy and sluggish.An upward saddle puts pressure on the groin (CU !) and leaves the front wheel too light, ready for front end washouts.

Yes, it’s true that some people can’t handle having their seats flat, and always need it sloping down at the front. This is because they are physically deformed… But otherwise, if you can handle a flat saddle, then Greg Lemond and other notable famous punters, ALL agree that you should LEVEL OUT.


Hot word action from Cycle Services:

TOASTED Toast is all about soft white fluffy stuff getting burntHow to learn about TOASTED
Method A
  1. Ride off knarly vertFreak out half way downApply front brake hard
  2. Wait
Method B
  1. Get right off the back of the saddle on a steep downhillTake feet out of pedals and straddle rear tyrePress crotch in space between tyre and frame
  2. Scream
STONERS How to spot a stoner. Telltale signs:

  1. The guy turning back 50 metres into a race because he forgot his lighter. (Why does he want a lighter in a race ?)Anyone with Team Green written in their sponsorship column. What does Team Green mean ? Sounds a bit dodgy, doesn’t it ? Kawasaki ? Not…
  2. Anyone in Cycle Services. Why is the shop painted green ? Looks a bit dodgy, doesn’t it ? Why is this newsletter green ? Is this paper made from recycled herbal foliage ?
BOGANS Key words:Holden. Hutt. Lion. Heavy Metal. Sheet metal. V8. Keg. Ford. DB. Black Sabbath. Headbang. Chevvy. AC/DC. Bullbars, leather, Jim Morrison. Black jersey. Flagon. Petrol. SCORE 1 for each item10 or more – REAL bogan5 to 10 – try hard boganLess than 5 – CU no go bogan

0 – may not be any type of bogan


RIDER PROFILE – This month’s SPECIAL: Two for the price of one, and they’re both zany wild men groovers….

Name Stevo the Devo
Nickname Gollum
Suburb Kelburn
Age 23
Occupation Stoodent
Bike Diamond
Components Shimano etc
Extras Mavic, Ambrosio rims, Bear Traps
Most awesome ride/race Hawkins, Karapoti
Other favourite rides Rollercoaster, Johnson’s short track
Favourite Food Pasta, animal, mud
Favourite Music Anything that’s very very fast, Metallica, Ministry, Soundgarden, Nurse, etc
Favourite Films To live and die in LA, The cook the thief, Bambi
Favourite Books/Mags Hitchhikers guide, Lord of the rings. Clockwork Orange, Slaine
Ambitions/Aspirations To escape the clutches of Lilith, To outwit all the bogans
Hot Comment Action Look out bogan, What red lightIf you can you will, Shit happens in threes


Name Ben Kepes
Nickname Beano, Keepsie, Doolally Alley
Suburb Tawa
Age 21
Occupation Electrician
Bike Raleigh
Components Shimano, Selle Italia, Mavic
Extras Pulse Rate Monitor
Most awesome ride/race A 1st and 2nd for Team Cycle Services in the Taranaki Pro/Am Road Race, Shitting Twinkies down the Elevator
Other favourite rides Paekakariki Hill (The steep side), From Cycle Services to McDonalds
Favourite Food McDonalds, Helga’s chips
Favourite Music Jesus Jones (Goes off ! for time trialling)
Favourite Films American Fliers (of course), Tour de France videos
Favourite Books/Mags Bicycle Guide, Greg Lemond’s complete book of cycling, Karma Sutra, Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance
Ambitions/Aspirations To ride the Elevator (ha ha !!), To get Wheels to dig road riding again
Hot Comment Not all roadies are CU tossers from hell (but quite a few are)



NZMBA National Cross Country Finals – PALMERSTON NORTH This race was HOT. Even driving up was exciting, as we pulled off the steep, narrow gravel road up to the start, to let crazed HELLMAN Darryn Henderson past in his big grunty ute. Next thing we saw was wild sideways powerslides, and a trail of the most impressive four wheel skid marks since the Wellington waterfront the day after the Nissan 500.Lining up at the start with all the awesome riders going off, and right from the outset Team Cycle Service was in the hunt for publicity as we etched the new purple riding jerseys into the collective psyche of the mountain bike fraternity.Firstly Steve Butland set the standard with a wild cartwheel and spectacular crash right in the middle of the bunch, Then Dave Newbury overtook twenty riders into the first corner doing a manic crossed up motorcross slide, only to crash his brains out and go straight back to the tail end place.The weather was perfect, and the track was a beautifully tortuous figure eight that took in steep hill climbs, rolling four wheel drive tracks and grass, rough downhills, mud, river crossings, wild fast downhills, technical single track and gravel roads. What else is there ? (Apart from carrying, and who needs that ?) In the space of just minutes it was possible to go from a wrist busting adrenaline frenzy mega descent overtaking riders like a fighter plane dropping out of the sky to blitz unsuspecting slow things, and then switch to being all alone, lost in a silent single forest track, a paranoid search for tyre tracks (the arrow did point up here, didn’t it ?)

So it went off, and I haven’t got a clue who came where, but everybody was racing hard, and after the Karapoti this may well be one of NZ’s most epic races. Sam McMurray and Yvette Southorn both rode strongly in the Expert classes, and the rest of us cruised around with all the other slow plebs in the Sports class. (As a new sideline to pass the time while cruising with the other Sport riders – if you’re sick of watching the grass grow – play count the over $5000 bikes. There’s enough titanium at the back end of the Sport grade to keep a NASA space shuttle going off..)

JUNE 1993

Newsletter #4

OK Punters, don’t freak, here it is, newsletter No 4. In this, our biggest issue ever, we have all the info from in the trade, and more going off dribble for all you ravers. So whether you’re a trihead weight freak poser looking to get munted on a death vert, or a hardcore hellman thrasher, coned up and out for air on a pigbike, hang in with this months word action and your form will be good.

Anyone who is attempting to become a hell-thrasher, would do well to study the form of Craig “My bike’s broken again” Nihilist Anderson. After a full $700 parts replacement programme (we threw money at the problem till it went away), he lined up at Waiterere Beach for the final KOF race, and managed an awesome three kilometres before a twig demolished his brand new derailleur (see next item). After yet another replacement derailleur was “heinously twisted beyond recognition” after only four days, by yet another twig, we are starting to wonder if his bike is cursed…. Anyone who can set a running average of $100 broken parts per week, and stick to it month after month, has got to wonder.

Anyone who is attempting to become the most hopelessly lost dude in a race, would do well to study the for of Craig “has anyone seen an angry ropehead” Nihilist Anderson. While walking back to the start of the Waiterere Beach race with a broken derailleur (see previous item), he met a helpful TOSSER who directed him on a “shortcut” back to the start. Four hours later, after a very, very long walk following a disoriented circular path taking in much of the forest’s fascinating flora and scenery, he arrived back at the start. As the prize giving was over, the people had left, and there was hardly anyone left to abuse, Craig had to vent his anger by flinging his bike into a fence until some more parts bent.


Local celebrity FAMOUS HENRY, seen here going off in CITY VOICE

Can you think of a better caption for the photo? Best caption wins a 2nd hand puncture repair kit.

Are you artistic? Best coloured photo wins a months supply of bent wheels, from our private collection.



If you ride off road in winter, your chain is going to get trashed. There is only one way to avoid this, and that’s not to ride. Personally, I’m no expert on getting a good run out of chains – my last chain and 36T chainring were worn out in six weeks. But people who do ride and still get over 6 months out of their chains and cluster have shared their secrets with me.

    1. Clean the chain after every off road ride. Kerosene is the best solvent to use because it leaves an oily film on the chain.
    2. Leave the chain on the bike. Disconnecting the chain and taking it off to soak is likely to lead to pin failure later – especially with Shimano chains. If you like taking the chain off, get a Taya chain, with the special connecting link.
    3. For convenience, get a chain cleaning tool, with whizzy little revolving brushes that scrub the chain clean while you backpedal the chain round by hand.
    4. Wipe the kero off with a rag, and then lube the chain. No lubricant is perfect. CRC is fast and convenient, OK for dry conditions, but washes off in water, and has to be reapplied every ride because it dries out. Thick oils like engine oil and chainsaw oil just suck because they attract dirt and wear out the chain faster. Thin oils like sewing machine oil are good value for money. But they tend to come off in wet conditions. Trendy synthetic oils like Pedro’s are best because they stay on longest.
    5. If you have problems with Shimano hyperglide chains breaking, try using a Taya, or a DID Supershift chain, as both of these chains are better able to handle hard crunching gear changes.
    6. If your chain slips under pressure, chances are your cluster and/or chainring(s) are C.U. For the first few rides after your expensive parts replacement programme, you will probably be motivated to maintain your chain. See step 1.


Types of Cyclists – A Questionnaire.

TRIHEAD : 1. You like to ride in wet undies

2. You prefer fluoro undies

3. You prefer fluoro everything

4. Aerobars

5. Training schedule

POSERS : 1. You sleep with your bike

2. Your mother polishes your bike every day

3. Matching team jersey and shorts

4. Road bike

5. Oriental Bay

HELLMEN : 1. You like to crash into trees

2. You never ride straight

3. Hangover and lots of drugs make you go faster

4. Thrashed mountain bike

5. Cycle Services regular

SCORE : 5 – Typical. Your life is a cliché.

4 – Not all there. Missing the important element.

3 – Mixed up. You don’t know what you are, do you ?

2 – Learner. Tosser. Get a life.

1 – Pathetic. Can’t you even buy some fluoro undies ?

0 – Nothing. You don’t amount to anything.


Name Al
Nickname Maco
Suburb Vount Mic
Age 19
Occupation Tech – Weld/Fitting, Turning
Bike Cadex, tie dyed Healing Clipper, unicycle with detached front wheel
Components Bar ends, XT (ish), pump
Extras Mud, blood and attitude
Most awesome ride/race Hawkins Hill – coke crunchies and hangover, final air before beach is good.
Other Favourites
  1. Johnson’s, Cuba Mall slide humps, nude motorcycling. James Smiths spiral
  2. Climies downhill, Magpie lawn, bus surfing, Frank Kitts slide, Mt Maria, Plimmers Steps
Favourite Food Pasta, pies, peanuts, power bars, chips and Go Cat
Favourite Music Nana Mouskouri’s greatest hits, Sesame St theme
Favourite Films Terminator, Smurfs, Reamed and Limpy
Favourite Reading Weetbix packet, Furry Freak brothers, Ramones record covers, Footrot Flats
  • To be Cycle Services “93 Unisanta
  • To have external clearance from top tube
  • To outsprint the Feds
  • To tame my pet python
  • To leave tyre marks on a plate glass window
Hot Comment Action
  • When pinching undies from Deka, run like hell
  • A crash is only serious if you’re laughing hard
  • Stitches aren’t as bad as they seem


Your Pal Al.


Here’s a dodgy little poem that turned up unexpectedly in our office the other day. Who knows what kind of a sick, twisted life this guy must lead ? We hope he gets better.


I live a life of booze and drugs

and somewhat in a mess

And if I did describe my life

the word would be excess.

Though ethanol and THC

can serve to get me higher

not water high or burning hell

can quench my heart’s desire.

Though women, drugs and alcohol

do serve to feed my psyche;

lies in my mountain bike.

On sunny days of windless clear

I wake up feeling spent

upon my bike I feebly climb

and begin my ascent.

My blood still full of alcohol

my throat feels like a whore

the wasted products of last night

will poison me no more.

Through forest track and river bed

my bike doth carry me

I know that it will never stop

unless by my decree.

Then purged of sweat and clear of mind conquer the great hill

so thinketh I with half a joint

I’ve got some time to kill.

Exertion has a strange effect

and in good pot I’ve tasted

the harder I ride to the top

the quicker I get wasted.

And so I find my body clean

with last night’s poison spent

I’m fully smashed and deadly keen

and so start my descent.



Rallywoods is out in the woods. It’s a patch of mostly uninhabitable jungle somewhere off the back on Moonshine Road. 4 Wheel Drive freaks to there to lose their Landcruisers in the toitois. They have a large and well appointed hut there, where they gather to sink piss and hang out with other petrol head and talk about modified 9″ limited slip off.

We say who needs 4 wheel drive ? The two wheel drive Team Triumph towed a trailer and eight bikes up a hill in the rain no problem, and we were ready to hit the trails with our one wheel hell bikes.

Our host, regular local and keen bush basher Rick, was hanging out to get some hell crash action going off as soon as possible. “The track goes down there, you fast guys can go first” he said looking at us. About half way down when I had just started thinking “Hey, this is easy, why is Steve sliding down the track on his back ?” and all of a sudden I’m sliding down the track on my back too. Avoid wet moss on smooth clay, unless you like eating it. But at least this track was a track.

The track that’s not a track was a new type of riding experience. “The track goes down there”, said Rick, “just follow the toitois.” This time I went last, but even with 13 bikes in front of me, I couldn’t see the ground or anything past what I was currently crashing into. There’s nothing like doing repeated cartwheels into the undergrowth to get a sense of oneness with nature. So much more natural than the excessively urban style of riding on formed tracked and clearings.

For a bit of light relief, we crawled down the edge of a track sort of like the steepest part of the Karapoti’s Rock Garden, but much steeper and more slippery, and waited in eager anticipation while Neil Nihilist made a do or die attempt at riding down. Unfortunately he didn’t crash until after he got round the corner and out of sight, but the scream and crunching sound was still gratifying and well worth standing around in the drizzle for.

The hard day’s bush bashing was wrapped up with some bike tag, jousting and javelin throwing. While the first two fairly self explanatory, bike javelin throwing is a little unusual. One player get a big heavy pointed bit of timber (or a tree), and throws it at anyone on a bike, aiming to kill them. Obviously the loser is anyone who gets wasted. This game did not prove popular, and is best left to tossers.

So Rallywoods is a great place to get away from it all and thrash about in the bush. It’s private land, and sometimes used by four wheels drivers, but the owners are happy to let mountain bikers go up there, and also to rent out the hut (which is huge and has everything). To get Permission call Vern or Sue, 232-8900 weekdays, 527-8995 weekends. They charge $1 per ride, and $5 per night for the hut.

P.S. Brent Hoy is planning to hold one of the King of the Forest winter series races up there this year – you have been warned !


SUSPENSE. Who knows just when another Cycle Services Newsletter will come out ? Punctuality is just another word for predictability, and we live on the edge of reason where time is lost and found, like ¼” ball bearings in our plush, deep shag-pile carpet.

Never fear, CS is not CU, we’re back with another going off, hot shralve action, green, poseur free episode of the psycho tosser from hell newsletter, so why be normal, when you can be subversive ?

The NUMBER 5 is a landmark for any publication, the point at which critics ask the important question “now that they’ve found fame and fortune with a wider commercial audience, will they sell out ?

NO WAY SELL OUT – we promise, not even when we open our new branches in Elsdon, Taita and Eketahuna, will we ever advertise our newsletter on Moron FM, nor will we have a 30% off sale and flood the market with cut price newsletters.


Five commonly asked questions about the Cycle Services newsletter:

1.Q: Why is it always on green paper ?

A.We have this huge stack on green paper we got cheap, and have to unload somehow. Wanna buy some ?

2.Q: How come all the rider profiles are of Nihilists ?

A: There are more Nihilists than you think and they are all after you.

3. Q: Does NZ Cyclist Magazine get their ideas from the “CS” Newsletter ?

A: Yes, they copy it blatantly

4. Q: Is the newsletter written by another source, such as SAM’S BIKE SHOP ?

A: Yes, all the deviant bits.

5. Q: What is your plan of newspaper expansion and dominance ?

A: To grow page by page into a 300 page glossy magazine, bigger and better than “Outlaw Biker Lifestyle” magazine, and sell copies for $18 each worldwide.

Hardcore HENRY TOMAC in action at Levin

HOT FIVE: Five brand new brands destined to break through bigtime this season and establish market dominance, now that Cycle Services Marketing Division has created new HARDCORE IMAGE mountain bike type brand names for them:

New CS Brand Names

1. Hwa Fong Long

2. Hsin Chum Muddy Sheep

3. Lifu Ling Slayer

4. Bor Yeuh Chong Bondage Thrash Beast

5. Quarity Dong

(+ 6. Magnum Stud)

TECH TIPS: Handgrips. Get a grip on yourself.

1. Removing them: To get handgrips off, insert a long thin screwdriver between the grip and the bar, and squirt CRC down the gap. Work the CRC round, and the handgrip will slide easily off. Clean the CRC out with a rag, and the grips can be reused.

2. Fitting bar ends: To make the holes needed in the end of your grips so that you can slide them on further and fit bar ends, bash the end of the grip with a hammer. The handlebar will neatly cut a plug out of your grip from the inside.

3. Glueing handgrips: This simple concept seems to bring out the MacGyver in every mountain biker. The thought process goes something like this: “The guy in the shop said to glue my handgrips, so he must have meant hairspray. But if hairspray works, then flyspray would probably be just as good. And if flyspray is just as good, then I could probably use Cuddles fabric softener. And if Cuddles fabric softener would work, then there’s no reason why I couldn’t use ETA peanut butter. Then if I get lost in the bush I could eat my handgrips…” NO NO NO

We mean glue with glue. It doesn’t have to be Loctite #407 Super strength Permabond new extra heavy duty aircraft grade glue, although that works well. Any non water soluble contact glue designed for rubber and metal will do the job. We use Selleys Quick Grip, Ados or Bowes puncture repair vulcanising solution. Leave the grips to dry overnight before using them and you will have hardcore grip bondage action. HAPPY GRIPPING, DUDES.


“What has the world’s most hellish thrasher, Craig “sell me another derailleur” Nihilist Anderson done this month ?”, many of you have been asking. Well, this time he tried to bust off his gear lever by slamming his kneecap into at 60kph and diving headfirst into a tree. Finally the bike stood up to the abuse and Craig “I have to walk backwards because of all the stitches in my knee” Nihilist Anderson is having a 3 week break from riding.


“What was happening next door on Friday when there were 10 fire engines outside and smoke pouring out all of the windows ?”, many of you have been asking. “Is it true that Geoff and Tim from Midnight Espresso tried to roast their coffee beans in spa pool and triggered off a freak coffee bean combustion situation, leading to an out of control fire situation ?” All we can say is next time you’re in Midnight, ask them about their new smoked coffee, it’s going cheap, they’re having a fire sale.


Weird Al is the kind of hellman dude who never freaks out at a vert, he just shralves off the top, and goes off all the way to the bottom, getting major air on the knarly bits, and hanging out on the curves. But a minor crash on Mt Vic and he has been reduced to being a roadie dribbler riding around on a slug bondage action pigbike. All because his feeble carbon fibre got munted, his warranty is void and he is SOAL. How’s your form ? But stay tuned and we in the trade will let you know if carbon fibre can be repaired using new gaffer tape technology. Cycle Services – going where others fear to tread.


Name Oliver Brookewhite
Nickname Snap
Suburb Kelburn
Age 30
Occupation Pro MTB/Road Racer Team CYCLE SERVICES NIHILIST
Bikes Bosomworth road YAK MTB
Components Campag road, Shimano MTB, Mavic, Look, Vetta, Cinelli
Extras Computer, lots of hats
Most awesome ride/race Round Lake Taupo, 160k’s of scenic suffering
Other favourite rides
  1. Rollercoaster/Hawkins
  2. Eastbourne & back
Favourite Food McDonalds (Big Mac, 2 x cheeseburger, 2 x sm. fries). Weetbix
Favourite Music Public Enemy, Pink Floyd, Metallica, Led Zep, Hip-hop, Thrash, Cruisy
Favourite Films Terminator 1 & 2, Poseidon Adventure, The Man with 2 Brains
Favourite Books/Mags Cycling Weekly, Benjamin Spock’s Baby Book, any Sci-Fi
Ambitions/Aspirations Be a good father & not crash too often Managing CS Eketahuna branch
Hot Comment Action Better heads than dead Mmm, sabotage

Are you holding ?

Call me an old traditionalist !


So it’s cold, wet and dark, but you’re hanging out for action. You need carpark thrashing. First find a big empty multifloor carpark, a worn out back tyre, and half a dozen other riders you want to slam into concrete slabs with.

Watch out for those dudes who sit in boxes counting cars going in and out. They don’t get much action, but asking mountain bikers to leave is a highlight for them, so it’s best to go in the backway if they’re still around. They generally go off to wherever dudes who sit in boxes go to in the evening, by about 7.30pm, so then on anything goes.

Indoor bike tag is the ideal car park game. One dude is in, and his objective is to make other dudes in by tagging them or making them out their feet down. This way is more tactical than belies this description, but if we tell you punters how to play properly you might be able to beat us, and that would never do. Let’s just say the more often your opponents crash, the better your tactics are.

Carpark Speedway racing is another wild, zany action sport. Line up at the top and race for the inside line on each carpark ramp. Rubber gets shredded, and tactics include the inside ram, the full on powerslide, the outside fast line, and the erratic crash and weave with a bit of random wheel booting if all else fails. The objective here is to pass whoever is in front using whatever tactics do the job. There are no rules, and no tossers survive past the first corner. If the dude you passed is now sliding down the ramp on his back, your tactics go off.



“Why don’t you guys learn how to use the photocopier ?” some dross head CU tossers from hell have asked after seeing newsletter $ 5. Well, sorry dudes, but we meant the photos to come out like they did. After extensive testing on wasted university students, we found that GRUNGE photos elicit greater retinal response and increased mind enhancement. To achieve the desired effect, we took our original photos, and did copies of the copies until the impressive black in sensory overload effect was attained. Remember – you saw it first right here – The Psycho Services newsletter.


Seeing as how the odd newsletter seems to get perused by “insiders”, we would like to take this opportunity to point out that most of the rumours that get spread around the cycle industry are way too boring. Here’s some new ones. Pick whichever you like….

Hot new rumours:

Cycle Services is an undercover base for Mormon missionaries from Wisconsin.

Our aim is to make as little profit as possible, because money is evil. We give away a free bike with every inner tube.

We give our customers drugs that make them want to take the free bikes that we give away.

We have a large crew of rhesus monkeys assembling bikes for department stores, in our assembly area under the toilet.

We hate working with bicycles, but we couldn’t get jobs as parking wardens because we failed the friendly personality section of the parking warden aptitude test.

The entire Cycle Services shop a) fell off the back of a truck.

OR b) floated down the Hutt on a barbed wire canoe

OR c) landed in a space shuttle from Uranus

Everything we say is true. We are gods. We can easily beat John Tomac. We are international road cyclists.

HEALTH TIP– Are you at risks from SIDS ?

It had to happen, even clean living mountain bikers are frequently being exposed to the risk of SIDS, a potentially fatal, but until recently unheard of new syndrome. A rider is “just riding along”, when all of a sudden they are SID. SIDS, or Sudden Instant Death Syndrome, is a result of massive equipment failure, at exactly the wrong time. Score yourself in this questionnaire:

Your bike:

Straight blade forks (5 points)

Sub 140g handlebars that cost less than $100 (10 points)

Std non-suspension forks (5 points)

Massively stiff frame that’s very light (5 points)

Massively stiff frame that’s heavy (2 points)

Radial spoke front wheel (2 points)

Any other bargain priced lightweight bits (1 point each)

High tyre pressure – over 35lbs off road (2 points)

Age of bike (5 points per year)

Ferretuno bike from the Ware Out House (400 points)


Big, heavy, strong, muscly (5 points)

Fat, obese, flabby, overweight (5 points)

Hardcore, nihilist, thrasher, “real rider” (10 points)

You mean actually ride off road ? (10 points)

Maintenance, what’s that ? (10 points)

Airtime – height x distance (1 point per sq. m)


Lots and lots of point (over 40) – Buy some really good handlebars, check everything for cracks, and unless you like road riding heaps, try to reduce some stress somewhere (suspension, diet, go softcore, etc).

Quite a lot of point (20-40) – Could be dodgy – are you expecting too much from your equipment ? All types of metal are subject to fatigue ! Check yours out.

So few points as to be able to count them on your toes and fingers (under 20) – Chances are, your bike won’t break. But what kind of rider are you anyway ? Live dangerously, take chances, ride off road and get air till your frame snaps, dude !


“Guano bars go off” says Clinton Parrot, one of Wellington’s top coffee drinkers. Clint, a member of the top ranked Cycle Services team, is one of the new breed of highly motivated coffee drinkers setting the pace in New Zealand.

“I don’t have much time for food, but guano bars fit into my life because of their totally whacked out colour, and the way they make me fart in bed later” says Clint, who enjoys the new radish and albatross flavoured guano bars, as well as his old favourites, the original chocolate and penguin Guano bars. “I eat at least a dozen every day – a Guano bar is great before, during and after a coffee, and I usually like to have one soaking in my coffee while I’m drinking it, to bring out that full guano flavour” says the Taranaki born 21 year old, who has lived most of his life in Cuba St. Training hard all winter, this unemployed ex-varsity student has set new standards in coffee consumption, and guano bars have helped give him the edge. You don’t have to be a champion like Clint to appreciate whacked out colours and a good fart – Guano Bar – going beyond food.


We’re sick of the hand-wringing do-gooders who push off so-called responsibility, and ask us to back off on our rides and obey some “rules” of the trail. Rules ? That’s what we ride to get away from. We’re out there to shred, not to cozy up with a bunch of bird watching hikers. Rules were made to be broken and here’s what we think of them. (reprinted from VELO NEWS USA 1993)


Ride on open trails only. Sure, if you want to get stuck with all the rest of the freds out on a Sunday ride with Mom, Pop and junior. Get real ! Nothing gets the blood pumping like a good, illegal ride on a closed trail. Giving rangers the slip is always a rush, and nothing beats pulling an evasive from a pissed-off landowner ! Suggested rides: Mount Tam, any national park.

Leave no trace. Hey, take away the right to do power slides through switchbacks ? Never ! If you can’t chew up the trail at will, what good is mountain biking anyway ?

Control your bike. Snore. Pushing the envelope is what it’s about. Fast is what it’s about. The only control we’re into is when it’s on a sticker on our bar-ends.

Always yield trail. This is the real pisser. Who wants to give up ground to a bunch of dorks on foot ? There’s only two types on people in the world, the quick and the dead. And if they can’t get out of the way fast enough, well, that’s natural selection. There’s nothing like hiker-slalom to sharpen up downhill skills !

Never spook animals. Hey, it’s not our fault horses are so damn skittish. We choose the stealth bomber approach: Come from behind quietly, then zoom past with a yell, turn around, and watch the bucking bronco show !

Plan ahead. Always decide who’s buying the beer before the ride, and make sure he doesn’t get his head kicked in by the horse from No. 5.


Name Neil Holdom
Nickname Bronson
Suburb Taranaki
Age 21
Occupation Senior pizza delivery consultantTeam Cycle Services

Nihilist exterminator

Bike Cadex CFM 3
Components Shimano LX
Extras SPDs, watermelon size testicles, carbon kevlar skull plate, various THC related paraphernalia
Most awesome ride/race Anywhere I beat Dave mate, North Egmont, Blue lakes
Other favourite rides Round the bays, NOT !!!
Favourite Food KFC popcorn chicken, chocolate, the occasional tube of elephant sperm
Favourite Music Platinum Plus, Ministry, L7, PIL
Favourite Films Romper Stomper, Hardware, Nomads
Favourite Books/Mags Normal, any stick mag will do
Ambitions/Aspirations Repeatedly cane Dave mate’s assWin a pound

Go on a date with Brent Hoy

Hot Comment Action Nihilists are pussiesEating my dustPlastic will flex

Metal will rust


It’s not often a legend like myself stoops to such a minor publication but as Wheels and Henry begged for a short burst of enlightening rhetoric, and due to two recent and most annoying occurrences, I decided to bless them with a reply.

Censored (Editor)

Road cycles – I was recently blessed with an opportunity to ride a toothpick not ! road bike. Compared to Mountain thrashing, it’s like ice skating on grease and if there’s any joy in the sport it must be in the cross dressing of roadies seem to go off on. Anyway, wanting to confirm the rumours of unlimited speed and unequalled efficiency I decided to shoot up the Ngaio Gorge, so what happens ? Whilst idling up the Gorge in easy gear yours truly managed to tear the primitive metal frame to pieces.

Lesson – roadies are soft, mountain bikers are hard. The two should be kept separate, as road riding is not conducive to having a good time. Anyway, got to run. Dave mate is hunting me.

Catch U later, B.


Johnson’s Short Track, via Long gully farm, by DFW.

After bugle snapped the key off in the van ignition, we had to ditch the wheels and visit Bugle’s couch for a hardcore lung enhancement programme. Then we went to the top of Hawkin’s Hill and found the track that goes to Long Gully farm, so that we could get to meet the farmer. He was cool but said to ring the 025 number first to ask for permission, or he might flatten Team Nihilist with his hell Nissan Patrol 4 wheel drive. From there we made our way to the Wright’s Hill short track, cremated Peter Pipe, and then travelled down the track in a typical hardcore Nihilist fashion, and then back over to Johnson’s Reserve, Karori.

There we ran into grief – it’s really technical and challenging. This lead to lots of crashing action, including severe tree eating, face plants down banks, and I wanted to congratulate Mr Shimano for inventing SPD pedals that caused me to ream, main and demolish my nads on the crossbar. All in all, this is the kind of sensation I’m looking for. This is what makes me get out of bed in the morning and go off. If you really want to go off, head up to Johnson’s Hill, in the rain, with SPDs and worn out tyres, and try to ride down the track fast without putting a foot down. Free powerbar from DFW to anyone who survives.


We have heard rumours that some of our hardcore, full bondage hell thrasher action, going off bigtime bogan free shralving is doing the business in literary circles. Best selling authors are ringing up to ask us if they can plagiarise our newsletters to spice up their manuscripts. No one wants to be left tossing with last year’s Californian freestyle talk. No way, Sphincter out and make some shapes punters, fruit loops go off.

That you to the most heinously cool and style-mo-de groover(s) who showed their awesome good taste by nominating us for the Top Shop award. We would like to give you a big sloppy kiss on the bottoms. Styling dudes !

Is it really true that one of Wellington’s biggest is unable to carry out free service checks on their bikes if they have any dirt on them, because dirt makes them nauseous and gets in their eyes ? Surely not, it’s too bizarre to be true, the story must be a complete fabrication.

SOUNDS– How to make shapes, part 1

It has been said that you are what you eat. Oli hasn’t turned into a Moro Energy bar yet, so it must take a long time. But sounds work much faster, within minutes you feel like what you are listening to. Imagine Cycle Services with Moron FM playing on a transistor radio in the office. It would be like zombies dawn of the dead.

“What are you guys playing ?” punters ask, wanting to get a sense of what’s going off. What do Nihilists listen to ? they wonder, hoping to become hardcore. OK, Nihilists listen to Ministry, L7, Metallica, Sound Garden and anything that’s really fast. That’s why they ride so fast. We never play anything like that in the shop because we might freak out and start using the hammer (and I would definitely freak out and use the hammer on whoever put it on – sub editor). We listen to gentle, loving world peace meditation tapes. Except when we have a Ferruno bike to work on. Then we get out the thrash metal and start thrashing some metal. But just to show we don’t really listen to the same Faith No More album over and over every day, here it is. The first ever Club CS CUBA hot list, compiled by our resident DJs and hidden elsewhere in the newsletter, so you have to work for our hot tips.


By Oli BFR McDs OS

Tuesday Night : Simpson O’clock : Pitch Black…

Wheels says, “Hell ride ?”

I say, “Check”

After fitting mandatory danger apparatus (i.e. Light, pump, tools, inflatable dinghy), we set out. Wheels set tempo up Thompson St, Brooklyn Hill, to Panorama Heights…. I follow cursing & complaining as usual. At the first Hawkin’s Hill gate, we are stopped by a stranger with a truck. “Careful lads, there’s a loony up the hill who keeps going up to big guys and saying “Kiss me, sweetie !” ” Wheels and I exchange brave and heroic, yet strangely terrified glances.

“Let’s go”, I say. We do. The thought of a mad pervert leaping out of the bushes and trying to rape us never enters our minds.. much.

Wheels again set tempo, but this time fear lends me wings, and I stay somewhat in touch with him. After the windmill, I take the lead as my legs start to fire. My smooth turn at the front is ruined by a kamikaze possum throwing itself under my wheels, at pace. It bullets into the undergrowth as quickly as it appeared. We continue.

The lights of the South Inland glitter as me near the summit of Hawkin’s Hill. It’s cold so Wheels stops to put on his jacket. An hour later, we set off down the tip road track. A hundred yards later, he’s just a faint glow in the distance as I slowly follow down this most excellent descent. Somehow I find that riding in the dark isn’t that bad, as I have to concentrate solely on the pool of light my BLT provides, rather than look ahead and be intimidated by the “Bike Swallowing Ruts of Satan”. Most of my lines even work out for me!

Wheels waits every now and then, but we just do our own thing. The bottom of the track comes up sooner than usual for me, but only just soon enough for my battery, as my light dies the minute I hit Owhiro Road. Just as well we didn’t go down to the beach, or it would have been bouncing down the hill on my head in the total dark action time. Bad oil.

We ride around Island bay buzzing.

“Strange night, dude !” says Wheels

“Check”, I say.

The future of suspension frames?

RIDE TIP: Just to get this straightened out once and for all, when passing on a track the call “On your right” means “Passing on the right, you move left”. A call of “RIGHT !” means the same – the person being overtaken moves left. If you don’t know your left from your right, get it embroidered on your gloves before you get tyre marks on your back !


Name Brent
Nickname Spooks

Poison Dwarf

Suburb Northland
Occupation Stud-ent
Age 24
Bike Alpine Stars Cro-mega (“Flick”)
Components Deore DX
Extras Manitou II, concord saddle, std paraphernalia (those in the know will know
Most awesome ride/race Ngaumu Forest, Tinakori (in summer), any hell uphills
Other favourite rides Mt Climie, Rollercoaster, St Pats
Favourite Food Pasta, curries (hot only), fish, porridge !
Favourite Music Reggae, hardcore black (hate) music (Ice Cube, NWA), Jazz
Favourite Films Baron Munchhausen (tripping only), Nikita, Planes Trains & Automobiles
Favourite Books/Mags Psychotic thriller, M biking mags
Ambitions/Aspirations To keep up the Team Nihilist lifestyle & still go off !

To make other bike shops realise they don’t go off !

Hot Comment Action Frottage action goes off !

If you don’t smoke, you’re not on fire ! (Weed is evil – Editor)

Team Nihilist hate stussy dickheads ! (CS believe in peace and universal harmony. These feelings are really heavy, man ! _ Editor)



Sound Garden : Ice Cube : Public Enemy : Bomb the Bass : King Missile


Welcome to the Terrordome – Public Enemy : I Have Loved Me a Man – Allison Durban : Connected – Stereo MCs : Please Release Me – Engelbert Humperdinck : Rusty Cage – Sound Garden : Me & Mrs Jones – Tom Jones : 21st Concerto – Mozart dude : Shoot That Poison Arrow – ABC : Gasranken Station – Headless Chickens : Legalise It – Peter Tosh

TERMINATOR BRONSON’S HIT PICS ; Sticky Filth – Weep Woman Weep : L7 – Bricks R Heavy : Rage Against the Machine ; Soundgarden – Badmotafinger : Pearl Jam – Ten : The Trip (Compilation Album) ; Metallica – Metallica : PIL – The Best So Far ; Temple of the Dog – Hungerstrike : Quicksand – Slip

DJ WHEELYMAN : Iggy Pop – Dog Food : King Missile – Detachable Penis : The Cult – Wildflower : Nirvana – Come As You Are : Jane’s Addiction – Been Caught Stealing : Beastie Boys – Fight For Your Right To Party : 808 State – In Your Face : Faith No More – Everything’s Ruined : Living Colour – Cult of Personality : Ministry – Jesus Built My Hotrod : Shaggy – Oh Carolina

MR CU : Ice T – Body Count : Jimi Hendrix – Purple Haze : Rolling Stones – Gimme shelter : Curve – Doppelganger (Album) : Red Hot Chilli Peppers – Under the Bridge : Primal Scream – Slip Inside This House : Faith No More – Kindergarten : Led Zep 2 : Husker Du – Lonely

DJ DEB (But they only let me play them upstairs !) Barefoot – kd lang : It’s Raining Men – Weather Girls : Everybody Hurts – REM : So Cruel – U2 : Throw Your Arms Around Me – Hunters & Collectors : Stand On Your Man – Tuffy Wynotte : She’s So Modern – Boomtown Rats : Bailero – Kiri Te Kanawa : When You Don’t See Me – Sisters of Mercy : Don’t Stop Me Now – Chained Daisies


There has been a great deal of debate on the topic of performance enhancing drugs. Two Questions: 1. How do we define performance enhancement ? 2. How do we define drugs ?

In my experience, performance enhancers must do one of two things – increase your physical capabilities (make you hard) or, alter your mental state (make you crazy). So what about the drugs question ? In this case the old “Does it get you really out of it ?” test does not apply.

Alcohol is not a performance enhancer as far as MTB substance abusers are concerned, The only performance that grog increases is the old horizontal thrusting action (and then only in the mind of the performer – Sub editor)

Is spirulina a drug ? Well, it doesn’t get you high, but it does create a mild form of euphoria leading to addiction. Ask Wheels what happens if he doesn’t get a daily fix of seaweed pills. The classic is Brent (Sphyncterboy) Nihilist who upon drying out from three months of hard out spirulina abuse suffered from withdrawal symptoms ranging from chronic back pain to high velocity dysentery (Oooh, smelly).

Is Gatorade a drug ? Try sniffing it.

Here it comes ! What about pot ? Is it a performance enhancer ? For purely scientific reasons, I decided to conduct a series of controlled experiments involving this most unusual of substances and discovered the following:

It does get you out of it

It does make you crazy

It does make you hard

It does make you forget

Helpful hints:

If you decide to try this enhancer, don’t forget to eat and don’t forget to hold onto the handlebars. Short-term memory loss is a major hassle e.g.

Where are the pedals ?

Where is the track ?

Where did that tree come from ?

Bronson the traditionalist is above all these trivial things and rides on instinct, but if you will insist on experimentation, go off !


Do you like to get up really early, go out in the cold and pay to push your bike through the mud for three hours ? Have you got “Masochist” tattooed on your forehead ? Do you eat nails for breakfast ? Then this could be the race.

Lining up at the start. Team Cycle Services were awesome, a sea of purple jerseys styling and going off. When Brent Hoy said “This is not a race, it’s a survival, 50% of you won’t even finish”, we knew he must mean Bicycles Unlimited riders !

We hoofed off down the track, starting with fast gravel, which soon turned to muddy track, blocked with fallen pine trees, and huge gaping holes where parts of the track had slipped away. Soon the notorious Ngamu orange arrows came thick and fast. One minute you’re riding fast along a track, the next thing you know a cursed orange arrow is diverting you up a vertical slippery clay bank that goes up for about 200 metres, and then gets even more slippery, but just ridable for a long, long time, before getting steeper again.

Mixed in amongst this torture are the downhill bits that just go off big time. My personal highlight was the road part where you can easily spin out a 46 x 13 gear, curving around big sweepers at hell pace, then turning hard off the track and swooping down a greasy death vert, picking up so much pace it’s like doing a water chute in a bicycle. The steep slippery bits on the narrow, overgrown tracks were fun too, running off the edge and crashing through the scrub to shave off a bit of pace in the looser sections.

But the race did have its low points. The 2nd lap was a bummer. It wasn’t any longer, but it was an awful lot deeper. Watching the clock I felt rabid and desperate to be running 18 minutes slower on my second lap than the first. But surprisingly enough, even after stopping to lie down and sob on the last big hill where my bike weighed 72.5lbs, and Brent Hoy had spread 4 litres of grease on the track, there was still hardly anyone overtaking me. Everybody else was grovelling on the 2nd lap too. Except for Lloyd, who overtook me right at the end, in front of all the fans, and gave me such a shock that I nearly fell off in front of all those video cameras.

After the race, Team CS won all the spot prizes, then we went to Hung Wah Kwok takeaways where Al shouted us to $75 worth of takeaways out of his winnings so that we could all feel fully marginal thrashing home over the Rimutakas in the snow. Check out these results:


Supersport 1st Alastair McIntyre (Weird Al)

Junior Sport 2nd Ken MacIver (The New Hellman)

7th Neil Holdom (Bronson)

8th Dave (Mate) Newbury (DFW)

9th Paul Waite (Crash)

Senior Sport 3rd Lloyd Connelly (Break)

4th Ian Gregson (Wheels)

6th The one & only Henry (Mr CU)

Masters 3rd Harry Gregson (Ian’s Dad)

Recreational 6th Brent Williams (Spooks)

7th Pete Tulloch (The Sausage Man)

15th Brendan Byrne (Luciano)

16th Adrian Armstrong (Virgil)

17th Oliver Brookewhite (Oli BFR)

19th Craig Anderson (Bugle)



Hi Punters, happy Xmas. Just when you thought it was safe to settle back and read “Road Bike Action” mag, we’re back with another installment to put fear into the hearts of poseurs everywhere. Why haven’t we done a newsletter for so long, you no doubt want to know.

Excuse List :

  1. Last month’s newsletter was too explicit to print and we didn’t want to get busted
  2. Green paper was scarce as Shimano spare parts and there was none in the country for 6 weeks
  3. We were busy sueing NZ Cycling Mag for plagiarism
  4. October and November were just way too surreal and we were too freaked out to shralve

As you may remember, last Xmas we had Weird Al dressed in a Santa outfit, riding a unicycle, with a detached front wheel, and wearing a sandwich board, riding around malls and performing stunts in the middle of crowded intersections. He was awesome, but sadly after falling into the Manners Mall fountain while trying to ride around the edge in front of several hundred punters, he got water in his ears and has never been the same since. If you are really good at unicycling, like dressing up, and are willing to work for one powerbar and hour, come and see us about a job.

Otherwise it’s just going to have to be Al again, isn’t it?


Following hot on the heels of the Kennett Brother latest book “Classic NZ Mountain Bike Rides” is another new mountain bike book, released just in time for Xmas. “The Nihilist hardcore fully marginal death vert guidebook” by Spooks, Bugle and Mr F (published by Bogus Press), is poised to become another best seller. All the rides are in Wellington, because, as the authors point out, all real mountain bikers are in Wellington, and all real tracks are in Wellington, too.

The book starts out with chapters on how to ensure that your bike and riding gears is suitably “hard”. Chapters 1 “Turning your bike into a thrasher” & 2 “Dressing like a hellman” are packed full of useful tips, like how to get rid of that new bike look in one afternoon, and what to do with fluoro riding gear.

Next the book moves into Nihilist philosophy, with chapters on thrash music, emergency walkman repairs, how to keep your stash dry, why you should never ride straight, how to abuse tossers, and asks the crucial question “What is FEAR?”

By this stage, the reader is well psyched up and ready to go off over the rides. All of them are downhill, and have been extensively tested. There are three categories: verts, death verts, and fully marginal death verts. The authors have left no stone unturned in the relentless search for verts, having spent the past year searching for them every day. The most lucrative areas are Mt Vic, and Tinakori Hill, but all areas are covered including the Hutt Valley (“The bogan lands”) and Mt Kau Kau (“Elevator country”)

Finally, the book has chapters on urban terrorism, including car parks, stairs, ramps, buildings, malls, one way street action, and man made jumps. The research for this book is extensive, and included in the appendix is a list of parts broken while testing rides (including 17 rear derailleurs, 15 rims, 4 Manitou fork crowns, 3 frames, 42 pairs of brake pads, etc, etc), and an invaluable glossary, which lists hundreds of useful Nihilist words and sayings. We have reprinted a few here to whet your appetite.

“Nihilist” – no hope, no fear

“Yelp hard, no grogan” – really awesome, no shit

“Frot Out” – a surplus of good frottage

“Tripper” – a few sausages short of a barbecue

“Fully jiz” – stylee and going off

“Freaked” – the onset of FEAR

“Trolleyed” – toasted on conage and skullage


Name Rod Bardsley
Nickname Mad Dog, plus many derogatory names incorporating “Rod”
Suburb The Terrace
Age 27
Occupation Firefighter, MTB mechanic, any Arthur Daley type enterprises
Bike Manitou FS
Components XTR, TNT, synchros, SRP, Onza, Ringla, Answer, Flite, Sedis, Odyssey, Yeti (i.e. anything obnoxiously expensive that does sweet F.A, but looks really cool)
Extras Lizard skins, Computer, Anti chain suck thing, Brake boosters, SPD’s, extra rubber jammed onto my Manitou 3’s ‘cause they’re too bloody soft (Yankee softies!)
Most awesome ride/race Rollercoaster, Climie downhill
Other favourite rides Wainui summit to Days Bay, Butterfly Creek, Belmont Trig, Tinakori Hill, Midland Park (when those pinhead stussy boarders aren’t dicking off)
Favourite Food Weetbix, pasta, rice, burritos, bananas, ultra strong coffee, milky bars, toast
Favourite Music My twisty spokes thwanging at 75kph down the Rollercoaster
Favourite Films Butterfly Creek MTB home video! Highlander 1, anything with Sharon Stone
Favourite Books/Mags MBA, any super covert spy story
Ambitions/Aspirations 80kph down the Rollercoaster See if Lloyd’s as good as I suspect he is

Achieve corresponding travel with rear susp, as with new M3’s

Ride till I die (hope someone invents a 3 wheeled MTB with arthritis compatible shifters)

Hot Comment Action Twisty spokes go off!! You just need strong wrists * I believe in Martians – but can they ride!?

* Read “Vaseline & Ambidextrousness – Beginners Guide by Rod Bardsley


(I was planning to spend a page going off over my awesome performance in the Round Taupo race, but something arrived in our letterbox only this morning which you might find rather interesting)

Dear Cycle Services,

A truly magnificent publication. The best on any street, in any city in the country – if not the world. Stylish, completely original, totally inspiring. After such a glowing critique, maybe you can use this modest offering. It may lack the snap of your crazy style, so feel free to inject it with whatever is suitable – make sure it’s with a clean needle – Pamela doesn’t want to be infested with something that’ll slow her down.

Yours in anticipation,

Pamela Wolfgang.


(This is complete, unabridged, and uninjected by us – Editor)

Another hellishly early morn. The state of it. Hooter for breakfast to cut the edge on Turo conviviality. Into the van, pick up the Euros and power up the Remarkables access road prattling the usual hype – no different from yesterdays and the morrow will bring the same. A few hysterics as the van fishtails. “No worries, mate! Never lost a punter yet!” A few dive for their translators, but most smile – they lap up that classic Kiwi lingo.

Power slide to a stop at the top – and the punters pour out amping. 40 minutes up at 50-100kph equals monumental downhill action. Relaxing while the Euros kit themselves out – custom moulded lids, Killer loops with Go Fast lenses, Go-Glow Fluoro lycra one pieces – and the bikes. Blow my year’s wages on one of these space-tech gravel grinders. My battle weary Stump Jumper – hardened by a years Cycle Couriering in Wellington waits patiently beside me.

Are we ready? Are we ready yet? Are we finally ready? Outta here like a skinned rabbit. Charging straight downhill. No need to pedal. Medium grade gravel – washboard but speed smoothes it out – at 50-60kph it’s pure liquid. I’ll hand it to some of these boys – they want to go fast. One in particular is gripped by Olympic dreams of glory – Hans in hostile competition mode. I hang on his tail – warn him of the more freaking corners coming up – buy hey, language barrier – my German’s a tad rusty – and over he goes – sideways and disappearing off the side. 100 metres if scree slide – stops on the road – zig-zagging round. Looks like someone’s attacked him with a belt sander – graft material – skin donor needed.

The zig-zagging road lends itself to some hellish air – off the road down the steep slopes in between. Complete freak scene having the ground falling away below – soaring skywards. Sweet fast landing on the steep sections. Punters bail out on this one. Sugar refill, halfway down – Euro speak fills the air. Sheesh! These boys are still stuck on surf speak “Awesome”, “Gnarly”, “Out there, man” – all with the fucking Euro (FE) accent. Consume the chocolate, time for a few essential visual adjustments to the costumes while I sneak some altitude adjustment with this Yankee Hellman who’s turning on the charm. Hmmmm – I don’t think so.

But now – tracks to fry. Stonking scream off through a narrow goatee track. Tad technical. Fruit loops all over the place. Jellybean jungle jumping round my brain. Can’t quite seem to kick the habit. Blaze back onto the access road for a bone bouncing blast down the final bits. Home straight – count them off – everyone made it – no missing Fritz. The van awaits with the skin job looking a bit more colourful than the pasty while thing I’d patched up earlier. Pack up, take off. Everyone’s tired but buzzing megawatts, like an electric fence – silent but very much alive, else recounting their favourite bit – that second where things were a tad out of control – skating the edge. Me? I think Wellington, and pine for a red light to blast through – haven’t they heard of traffic lights here? Moral of the story? Don’t do this sort of shit unless you’re paid to. And go out of your way for air – essential elements: Good fast takeoff and a steep landing for sweet touchdowns. Love ya, Pamela.


Have you ever noticed, whilst cruising through town on a post hardcore shralving Tinakori action warmdown, the multicoloured infestation of road lice we know as couriers. Well, I have and I must say I’m most intrigued with these diligent little creatures scuttling around on their archaic and more often pre-historic bicycles. I was so curious as to what these walking, riding bulletin boards were doing that I stopped one to ask it it’s purpose. “Halt, coloured creature” I said “Where goest thou and for what purpose?” It was then that I noticed the creature had two mouths (one located in the middle of the face, and another found in a black box hanging on the hip.) In reply to my query, the courier spoke from the lower mouth saying “5.3 Pick up Cuba St Sex Shop” I was so disgusted that I got on my bike and fled. The couriers obviously ride furiously around town in the futile hope that someone will pick them up and take them for sex on Cuba St. Woe betide any of these sex starved lycra clad weirdos that come into Cycle Services ranting “5.3 Pick up Cuba St sex”, they’ll be getting the old “Bronson drop off courier Pine Needle Bank”



Editors note: Bronson is just pissed off because Sub 60 wouldn’t give him a job. Bronson is a S.N.A.G.

MARCH 1994


Had a good break over Christmas?” people have been prone to asking us lately.

Well, NO we haven’t – we’ve been busy, too busy in fact to write newsletters, too busy to ride bicycles, too busy to frolic amongst the flowers, too busy to listen to the new Pearl Jam album. We have, however, been going off, doing all the usual cycle shop stuff, only more, much more, of it than usual.

This newsletter could be really dross – we could describe every bottom bracket job we did, how much water came out of every pair of Manitous, the look on the face of every punter who had to have a chain, cluster and chainrings replacement job and asked how much it would cost, and so on.

But, fortunately, we have imaginations – we can make up wild and exotic adventures, pretend that we are really loose, going off wildmen who spent Xmas and New Year cruising round the country in a V8 powered Fiat Bambina with half a dozen Titanium dual suspension bikes chucked in the back, blowing away the locals in Kamikaze downhill runs, then smoking a few bales of prime sticky bud hellweed and washing it down with a keg of Blotto Strong Ale. Who wants realism anyway.

We started the year in good form with a whole full page colour article in the Evening Post (1/1/94), with a totally stylee pic of Al & Sam in purple CS gear, getting air off the top of Mt Vic. (Yeah, there was another dude in the photo, wearing some other kind of jersey – “SID’S Bait Shop” or something, but his head was not really in the photo so nobody would have noticed him much.) Sadly, Sam has a broken leg at the moment, so another one of our pro riders is off the circuit for a while.

Rider Profile

Name : Ian Gregson

Nickname : Wheels

Suburb : Kilbirnie

Age : 26

Occupation : Playing with bikes & collecting bike bits

Bikes : Marin Pine Mountain with Manitous, Vetta Heart Rate computer, BLT lightset, SPDs, and everything else required to make a Marin weigh 35lbs. (pump, tools, bottles, bar ends, heavy duty rims, extra stickers).

Also a Marin Eldridge Grade, two road bikes I’m not supposed to tell anybody about, a unicycle that gets thrown into Manners Mall fountain at Christmas, and a Yamaha YZ250 that’s too scary to ride.

Most awesome ride/race : Karipoti Classic (I hate it awesomely)

Other favourite rides : Mt Vic (downhill) Hawkins Tip Track (downhill) Mt Climie (downhill) Colonial Knob (downhill)

Favourite food : Bananas, spirulina, vitamin pills, chocolate, fish & chips and pizza

Favourite Music : Beastie Boys, Cult, Jane’s Addiction, Faith No More, Headless Chickens, Doors, Led Zep, Pixies, Electronic, Cure, Zodiac Mindwarp, PIL, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, U2, INXS, Soundgarden, Who, Hoodoo Gurus, Cramps.

Favourite Films : Vampires Kiss, Terminator II, Blues Brothers, Wayne’s World, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, Taxi Driver, Supercross (on Sky)

Favourite Books & Mags : CS Newsletter, MBA Mag, Catch 22, Zen & the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, On the Road, Furry Freak Brothers, Far Side.

Ambitions/Aspirations :

Write something fully marginal in a CS newsletter

Blow past Bugle when he’s spun out his 54 x 11 downhill

Run the most styling, going off, hot action, shralve out, thrasher shop in the business

Hot Comment Action :

Why be normal?

Do it to them before they do it to you

Look where you want to go

You’re not going too fast unless you’re out of control. You’re not out of control unless you have crashed. You haven’t crashed if you can stand up.

The further Adventures of Pamela Wolfgang

Queenstown MTB Guide & All Round Hell Chick

The state of it! Early Saturday morn – first day off in decades – hell-bent hangover trying to keel me over – but no way. Mad Marvin hammers on the door, 40km MTB race – get up – get ready. Get outta here! But there’s no stopping progress.

Praise Jesus for Good Time Go Fast glasses. Sun cranks out MegaKilowatts of mind numbing brightness. Choice of uphill, downhill or the full on thing. Before I can tick the obvious, Marvin jumps in and registers me in for the 40ker – Sado Masochists need only apply. I start to rant, but it hurts my head – the winds of predestination blow shit in my face again.

Resigned I prepare : Lycras – check – Polypros – check – Gatorade infested water – check – Smack hat – check – Lenses – check – Gloves – check – Hooter – check – fully tuned and on the start line. Amping for the gun, thirty other Bike Betties (Betty Bike Heads) champing at the bit. The gun blasts – my head aches – thighs contract – rubber grinds for grip – charging towards the first bend and straight into a bottle necked uphill grade. Estrogen overland – bikes all over the show. Luckily I’m near the front and fully fucked off by the whole scenario. I charge my way through – ignoring the abuse I’m attracting. Reminds me of queue jumping at Turoa – I’m impervious. I get through, and there it is – a steep GRAND-DADDY sucker of sheer uphill – far as the eye can make out. Chonk it down and spin the crank – Is this going to take long? Quarter hour later – nothing’s changed – feel I haven’t moved anywhere – chest exploding – white haze in my eyes – arse aching – tunnel hearing – I’m copping abuse as my fellow bikers grind past : “All’s fair in love & war” is gasped breathless, but it sounds more like “Get fucked, you whore”. I grasp breast-less. I’m making friends by the minute. Tactical intimidation? It’s not helping. I’m sweating pure alcohol – it hurts on the way out. I should have stuck to the Gissy Golds and left the Hookers to the hookers and Penny.

Round the bend and whatdayaknow – more sickening steep slope. It’s all too much – I ditch the bike – lie down and die – lungs imploding – white blazing in my brain – a strong urge to chuck God amongst all this suffering and pain – the most poignant of all philosophical questions crawls out of the mud of my brain – Why am I here? White brightens – blocks everything – I lose consciousness. I’m awoken by the splash of Gatorade against my face. Are these women hell-bent on revenge? She asks if I’m alright. I tell her to stop pouring Gatorade on me. She apologises. Fruit loops, honey.

Saturated, I’m back on the bike – a wee tad more refreshed. Hare Krishna! The top is ahead. Summit. Graunch into a suitable gear – skillfully manipulate the seat into dragster position while still riding. I miscalculate my medulla’s sobriety – and end up looking like Pee Wee Herman pedalling Barbie’s bike. Get off – readjust – fucked off by a few people going past – jump on – go off. Hyped and amped, power pedalling up to speed. The track’s smooth and fast forest floor action. Freak scene speeds – up to first corner – foot down – tail sliding – cranking big time. Bike’s working beautifully beneath me – floating over the bumps – the speed smoothing everything out, the corners blast towards me surprisingly quickly. I’m not quite ready for the next one – a wee bit out of shape. A tad out of control. More like a passenger than a pilot. I’m careering toward a tree. it looms large and inevitable – I tense for the impact ….. … be continued?

Tech Tips – Wheels

We do get some hell out there questions, asked by some strictly looping shralvers, but of those pertaining to bicycles (as opposed to say, takeaways, concrete, tattoos, fishing wire or Hillman Minx carburetors) there are few things more commonly asked about than wheels. Here are answers to some of the more common questions :

Q : What’s the difference between different brands & prices of rims?

A : Better rims are heat treated, a process that makes the aluminium stronger for the same weight. Rims that are treated are usually black or grey. Expect to pay $100 – $140 each. Many cheaper black rims are just standard aluminium with a black paint job. A good heat treated rim will often withstand an impact that would dent or flat spot a standard rim.

Reinforcing eyelets are fully frot. These are where the spoke nipples go – a double brass one is totally jizz, a single eyelet will still do the business, while no eyelets are not the go if you are out there. Eyelets allow firmer spoke tension, and don’t crack round the nipple.

Good rims are made by Ambrosio (Italy), Mavic (France) and F.I.R. (Italy), but are all in hopelessly short supply in this country at present. The rims that come on new bikes are almost always untreated and without eyelets, because these are lighter and cheaper. That’s why they all get munted. Never mind.

Q : Why are the spokes on the cluster side tighter than the other side?

A : This is what’s known as dishing. In order to fit a monstrously wide 7 or 8 speed cluster in one side, the wheel has to be built offset, and this is done by using 2mm shorter spokes on the cluster side, and cranking them up. Yes, they are more likely to break on that side, but would you want a one speed cluster?

Q : My spokes keep breaking. Why?

A : Common reasons include :

A badly drilled hub, with sharp edged holes that cause the spokes to break right at the hub.

A bent rim that is held straight by overtightening a group of spokes to pull it into line. These overstressed spokes will tend to break, making the rim spring badly out.

Cheap Taiwanese spokes – low quality steel soon snaps – this is common on junk warehouse bikes.

Corrosion – old corroded spokes lose their strength.

Very light gauge spokes – in an effort to save weight, some bikes have thinner spokes than std. Hard/heavy riders will snap them.

Masses of grunt uphill – really strong riders will break spokes on the cluster side because of the torque they create, which twists the hub in relation to the rim, and snaps spokes.

Q : What tyre pressure should I run?

A : For off-road mountain biking, a good starting point would be 40lbs front & rear. Softer pressures will give more traction, but are more prone to snake bite punctures. 25lbs is the minimum – any softer and the tyres flex badly on corners. 55lbs would be the maximum for off-road, not much danger of a puncture, but the tyre is starting to “round out” in profile, and will feel skittery and harsh, sliding over the surface rather than digging in. A softer front tyre than rear will help the bike to turn in tight corners. I have found 30lbs front, 35lbs rear to be a going off combo (but no guarantees on puncture resistance!). Tyres lose some pressure every few days, so you have to keep checking them.

Q : Why are most new bikes fitted with 32H rims rather than the old 36H?

A : This is purely for weight saving – 4 less spokes, and 4 less nipples. It saves even less weight than you might think, because each of the 32 spokes has to be longer. If the wheel is built well, it causes no reliability problems, but a 36H wheel is theoretically a bit stronger. Americans (& therefore NZ) use 32H, while Europeans use 36H. The only problem is that Europeans make all the good rims, which is why there is such a shortage of good 32H rims at the moment.

Q : Why do some MTBs have Presta (French/High Pressure) valves?

A : Again weight saving – this a dumb idea, causing problems where none previously existed. Presta valves are better for pressures over 75lbs, but as MTBs run low pressure tyres, this is irrelevant. Disadvantages incl :

The valve core is prone to bending or snapping if abused

They don’t fit service station pumps without an adapter

Other peoples spare tubes won’t fit your rim unless you have drilled it out.

Other peoples pumps won’t fit your tubes (and vice versa)

As over 95% of mountain bikes in NZ have car valves, (not to mention cars!), it’s sort of like using a Beta video recorder – why bother?

Q : Can you straighten my wheel?

A: We can only really fix side to side buckles – not up & down (flat spots). A rim bent out to about 1 or 2 cm (still goes round in the frame but hits brakes) can usually be straightened by tightening & loosening spokes. Any more than this and we are into rim bending, followed by spoke tensioning. Really major bends – “figure 8” and fold over bends are not a good prospect, as the rim will be fatigued even if we could get it straight. If it’s bent but you don’t need it perfect, we are usually willing to give straightening it a go. For perfection, a new rim & spokes are usually recommended.

CS Creative Writing Competition

Write a 200 word story about mountain biking, incorporating all of the following 40 words, in correct context. Best story gets in next newsletter and wins a free trip for two to Midnight Espresso (refreshments not included)

1: Tosser 11: Nihilists 21: Dribbler 31: Bogus
2: Bogan 12: Hellmen 22: Munted 32: Joss
3: CU 13: Frot Out 23: Form 33: Kick back
4: Punter 14: Fully Marginal 24: Grogan 34: The Business
5: Going Off 15: Dross 25: Hardcore 35: Gopher
6: Thrasher 16: Ravers 26: Stylee 36: Onyer
7: Shralving 17: Death Vert 27: Freak 37: Penis
8: Toasted 18: Conage 28: Tripper 38: From Hell
9: Stoners 19: Sphincter 29: Trolleyed 39: Yelp Hard
10: Fully Jizz 20: Freaked 30: Softcore 40: Cheesies

Bugle Broadcasts (Strictly Downhill)

A dozen or so Km from Hamilton lies Ngaurawhahia, home of the Maori Queen, past site of some dodgy music festivals and venue for Round #1 of the NZ Downhill champs.

DFW and I arrived Fri, 4th Feb around 3pm and driving down the twisty gravel road to the race area I became anxious at not seeing a towering 2000m peak rearing into the horizon before me. The race was held on a mound about the size of Mt Vic and with very similar terrain.

The course measured 3.1km, 65% twisty rooty single track in 3 sections, dissected by slightly downhill gravel access road.

Let’s go down : 1st corner 90° right hander a bit off camber (several people were in full disaster mode here only 10m from the start) power down over sharp, fist shaped rocks (lots of deflation action) to the fast ‘S’ bend, power down again over the stones. Full hell death braking down into middle ring to get around the right hand hairpin.

Power out back into big ring for the fastest bit of the track – long sweeping corners and straights. Start to wind up to the 50 tooth to about 60kph. Brake most heartily then into the pylon corner (or through it, over it, under it or eat it, a very heinous corner) Power down to the first single track section (watch the drainage trench that spits you into the bank) middle ring grind & twist to the single track exit.

Brief stretch of fire break then into the next single track. Blast through the styley dirt slalom section, then catch some air on the exit. Back into 50 tooth and power down some more flat straight fire break. Into middle ring, up the small hump onto the last single track section.

Blast bump bounce over the root section into the tight steep “S” with the big rut in the middle (BMX heads just use it as another berm) out over the ever-present drainage trench (this one was the scene of some ballistic swandive endos) then the big sprint to the line. Collapse totally knackered, heart rate about 300bpm.

Unfortunately, a small excursion into the grass beside the pylon (!) lost me 10secs, 5 of which cost me a place in the top 25 for another run, Hendi won in about 3.45.

Overall, a good race but having to wait 4 hours for first run times and a start for the second was a major toss (the fat woman selling coke & pies was stoked)

Strictly rating 7.0 out of 10

Go down fast CU

MAY 1994

Big gaps between newsletters is a good sign, it means we’re too busy to write, and this summer has been pumping, shralving, and going off, which is why newsletters have been very sparse.

Cycling often dies down a lot in winter, but this year there’s heaps more mud and darkness freaks hanging out to do the business. Team Nihilist have just re-commenced car-park thrashing, and the skidding tyres are piled up and waiting to be shredded.

The Karipoti had 1000 entrants this year, and showed not only that mountain biking is huge, but also that Wellington is #1 for action. The Cycle Services repair tent was like a lemming convention, and we are still knocking the dents out of the Team Triumph from all the spectators sitting on it. (No, the CS Triumph is not going to be the trials demonstration car next year. The reason they use a Triumph every year is because Triumphs are strong and grunty, not because they are cheap and worthless!).

Jo Dale has been selected for the women’s downhill team to race at the worlds this year, and is the first Team CS rider to get selected for the NZ MTB team – stylee action.

A heap of our other riders have been doing well too, with top places in many of the KOF series races, and Henry won the first ever NZ wheelbuilding championship. Purple is out there.

Handy hints #1 – How to copy our newsletter

Ever since we started doing this newsletter, we have had budding newsletter writers coming in, and saying, “We’re going to do a newsletter sort of like yours”. This is choice, there are so many CU newsletters out there, it’s time there were some more fully frot, well pumped newsletters doing the business. Here we will dispell some myths about newsletter writing.

Myth #1: “Punters have to understand what you are saying”.

Fully not. Be out there. You may be just a bogus tosshead with a sphincter fetish, but if punters can’t understand anything you say, they will never know.

Myth #2: “You have to be on really good drugs to write a newsletter”.

Remember that time you were watching TV late at night after they stopped transmitting programmes? Remember how those black and white dots started to fascinate you, as they turned into tigers, elephants, fish, swarms of bees, bicycle races, faces with six eyes spinning around, etc?

How much newsletter did you write at the time?

Exactly…. Better to just pretend you took some drugs, and write the newsletter.

Myth #3: “Newsletters have to be accurate”

Who is going to check? – if your writing is out there enough no one will understand what you are saying anyway, and besides, 99.9% of newsletter readers are so out of it they can’t even remember if they ever read a newsletter.

Next Issue Handy hints #2. How to run a small purple bike shop

Poet’s Corner

I walk alone my voice unheard

As I slowly climb.

The echoes of the mountain high,

Do serve to swallow time.

But time is nothing to me now,

I walk a steady pace.

The metres collect beneath my feet

Before the hellish chase.

The coldness that envelopes me,

Atop the mighty hill

Is nothing held against the speed

The high, the buzz, the thrill.

I do not come here for my friends

The sponsors or the press,

I do not come here for the crowd,

The girlies to impress,

I come here solely for myself.

I come here just for me.

To fly, get high, go off or die

I come here to be free.

I have no fear of dying

Nor crashing in the race.

I have no fear of gnarly verts,

Nor blood, nor stones, nor pace.

I simply have to carve the hill

To slash, to skid, to fly

To rule the speed, to do the deed

To touch the purple sky.

– Bronson

Poet’s other corner

My Karipoti

Karipoti, Karipoti

You were so long, it hurt my scroatee.

So while ascending the “Steps of Satan”

What did I think?

If I beat Spooks and Ian

They’ll both scream “Sphinck!”


Tech Tips – Tyres

What do they all do? Here’s a quick guide to popular off road competion tyres.


Smoke 2.1 – Rear Tyre, grunty tread, best all round tyre for any conditions. Our most popular tyre. Lasts well.

Smoke 2.1 Black Lightening – Same as std Smoke 2.1, but all black

Smoke Lite 1.9 – Light & skinny, front or rear, best for very light riders, or in extreme clay build up conditions for extra clearance. Wears out fast in hard conditions.

Dart 2.1 HC – Front tyre, best all round tyre for hard to med conditions, best for hard cornering, may slide in extreme mud, lasts well.

Dart 2.2 SC – Front tyre – very wide, good for heavy riders or hard rock conditions. Not better than an HC in mud, wears OK.


Psycho I – best for front, good for med to hard conditions

Psycho Gum 1.95 – Front tyre, great traction, wears suprisingly well for a soft compound tyre, & looks cool.

Psycho II 1.95 – Front tyre, good all rounder, wears well, smaller tread pattern than Psycho I, lacks depth of tread of say a Dart 2.1, but predictable handling.


Piranhapro ‘F’ 2.0 – New front tyre for all round conditions, some similarity to a Dart 2.1, Brent says they’re going off!


Cannibal 2.2 – Hell tread, big grunty tread blocks, for traction in med to soft surfaces. Rear tyre, ideal for heavier riders.

More Extreme 1.95 – Wide blocks for digging into ground like paddles. Rear tyre specially designed for climbing.

Ground Control 1.95 – The oldest good MTB tyre – all round conditions, wears well, best on the rear.

Storm Control 1.8 – For mud conditions – self clearing, wide spaced round blocks, good frame clearance, best on the rear.


Z-Max 2.1 – Hard to med conditions. Front or rear, wears well, predictable handling.


Porcupine 1.95 – Rear tyre for extreme mud conditions. Heavy. Doesn’t clog up. Wears out very, very fast, but at least they’re cheap.


Marin lite 2.1 – Very light with kevlar beads, for hard dry conditions front or rear, wears out quite quickly, good for lighter riders. Low cost weight saving.


Transalp 2.0 – Used by Darrin Henderson. Bombproof construction but quite heavy. All round downhill tyre, as yet untested by team CS.


On The Rocks 1.9 – Like a Smoke 1.2 but softer compound rubber & Kevlar beads. Very good traction, best on rear, but wears quickly.

Note : All those widths don’t mean very much, because each manufacturer measures their tyres differently – we just put them in to confuse you.

The Karapoti Classic

How did I get here? What am I doing in this place? Should I have taken those drugs that the man in the Falcon ute offered me?

There’s this little green computer on my handlebars, and it tells me my heartrate. It says “197”. This is not what bicyle magazines recomend riding at – they say when you race your heart should not be going that fast. But then this is the Karapoti.

This race is strange. It starts off with running through a river, and people try to knock you under the water so they can stand on you for traction and gain a place. Then there’s a long gradual uphill section, that could be quite scenic, except that you’re really worked up because 400 people are trying to pass you from behind, so you get mad and and start trying to pass the 400 people in front.

Then you get to a hill and it’s so steep that your eyeballs start popping out of your head and a dude loses it and falls on your bike and starts thrashing about trying to get untangled. This is when you start to realise that you are caught up in something unhealthy. A helecopter is hovering overhead, and the wind from it is so strong that people are getting blown off their bikes. When people in helecopters start filming you, you know that you must be doing something really odd.

Imagine there’s this incredibly steep track that goes down for miles, some bogans who work in a quarry decide to stop mountain bikers going down it, so they dynamite the whole track and leave huge boulders the size of TV sets littered all over the place. You are at the Rock Garden. You are hallucinating that you are John Tomac, so you ride down full speed ahead until some punter who is hallucinating that he is a ballerina gets in your way right at the bit with the biggest dropoff and you get air without your bike and land like Mr Bean on top of an excellent example of a jagged outcrop of rock.

Then there is this thing they call “The Devil’s Staircase”, Freaks start to run past. You stop to cry. Crawling looks so lame. You try to stand up and grovel with dignity. Sometimes if you suffer enough the pain fades away and goes dull. You can’t seem to reach this level of suffering. Welcome to hell, as those heavy metal type dudes are fond of saying.

Finally it goes down. Unbelievable. If you had legs you would spin out top gear, but those jellied things hnging out of your shorts just won’t transmit the power. Still, the force of gravity is enough to pass a seemingly endless stream of punters who haven’t mastered the idea of going down hills faster than they go up them.

But it doesn’t last, of course – there is yet another filthy great monster of a hill towering in the way of that nice place where there is food and drink and dented Triumphs to sleep on. Like those trick birthday candles that won’t blow out, this is a trick hill that doesn’t have a top. You can never be sure you have reached the summit until you cross the stream at the bottom of the other side. Then you don’t have far to go.

It may not be far to go, but with an empty camelbak, no food, no legs, and double vision, all those tired slow looking punters seem to be riding past surprisingly fast. Don’t count how many go past, it doesn’t matter so long as it’s not that guy with the red cross kit and a pack full of track markers.

Back through the river to the finish, and there’s still all those voyeuristic camera and TV freaks getting footage. Never know, you might make the news: “Karipoti competitor, feared lost, emerges after ridiculously long time”. A friendly and supportive crowd call out an encouraging chorus of “What happened to you?” “Yeah, yeah, yeah” you think. Maybe you should have had those drugs after all.

Rider Profile

Name : Fraser Wright

Nickname : Dubhead

Age : 18

Suburb : Whynuiowhere

Occupation : Student

Bike : MARIN “WANABE” Team Issue

Components : LX/DX/XT

Extras : Manitou M-Sports, 50T chainring, stickers

Most awesome ride/race : Karapoti

Other favourite rides : Orongorongo single track, Mikimiki, Top of Wainui hill, Cuba St, James Smith carpark

Favourite food : Chocolate “sex” cake at the vault, char grilled steak, soya decaf double latte, turkey vindaloo

Favourite music : Future Sound Of London, Lenny Kravitz, The Smiths, The Cure, The The

Favourite films : Wayne’s World, Ford Fairlane, any Herbie movie

Favourite books/mags : The Vee Dub Manual For The Complete Idiot, Viz, I Am Right You Are Wrong

Ambitions/aspirations :

– To understand the language of a Nihilist

– To be friends with a Nihilist

– For an espresso machine in Cycle Services

Hot comment action :

1974 didn’t happen, ‘75 will be better – Jimmy Page

Creative Writing

This month we have the winning entries in the Creative Writing competition. As there were two winners they each received half a free trip for two ( a free trip for two halves) to Midnight Espresso (refreshments not included). We provided free transport. Marginal jizz!

Dave (D.O.) Marriott presented the following stylee piece of prose :


Hey you tossers, I’m a CU biker. Going off some piney hill, just shralving, I came across some stoners! T hey were Nihilists! It was just a case of Frot out.

Anyway, enough of this dross, over a death vert  we went. Sphincter country or what? I was a dribbler  with little or no form, but the hardcore freaks got trolleyed bused. Really bogus. The kickback was barbecued gopher penis. Made us yelp hard. So these bogan punter thrashers got toasted. It was fully jizz. Those hellmen, they were really fully marginal ravers, not like Conage the Barbarian. I freaked, got munted (I used to like Clare Grogan – you know “Altered Images”, they were stylee, but they never covered Lennon-McCartneys “Day Tripper“). Softcore really, hippies sniffed joss sticks. Anyway, that’s the business. Onyer bike, you cheesies from hell.


Oliver Brooke-White tells it like it is :


The Nihilists gathered for conage on a going off day… Once toasted they set out on a fully jizz thrasher ride. After the hill climb from hell, they were feeling most CU, so they stopped to kickback before shralving down the death vert. They were busy getting munted, when some cheesies on Alu-Rads stumbled across them and freaked! The boys sussed them out as fully marginal ravers and decided to do the business. Off they set, feeling trolleyed. Suddenly a bogan freak pulled a stylee overtaking manouver on them. “Bogus!” yelled Bugle… “Gopher it!” shouted Steve, “Don’t let this penis make us look softcore!” then took him on. His form was hardcore and he pulled a joss move, and took out the punter. “Yelp hard, tosser!” called Al, as he got air over the petrol head…. The bogan began to frot out… he was feeling like a dribbler as the boys sphinctered past him at pace. Then his front wheel hit a hell-grogan and he endoed majorly. The boys had stopped at the bottom and were watching his dross action. “Onyer, tripper” said Spooks, but Oli had the last word, “That’ll teach you for playing with Hellman stoners!”



JULY 1994

Yes, our June/July newsletter is going to be ready before August, heaps of time to spare. So don’t freak out. This month we are celebrating our 12th ever newsletter by having 9 lists of 10 things. (9 divided by 10, multiplied by 17.777778, minus 4, equals 12)

Punters have been stumbling across unexpected new cycle shops, in bizarre locations, and drawing them to our attention. “What is going on,” they ask, “Why so many bike shops?” Figures may well be totally bogus, (like the ones above) but it has been said that :

1. Wellington has the highest level of mountain bike sales per head of population, of anywhere in the world

2. Half of all high quality mountain bikes sold in NZ are sold in Wellington

That said, it looks suspiciously like there are too many bike shops in Wellington. In fact, we are so desperate to get a slice of the action that we are having a “midwinter midterm madness mirkin moron mutant monopoly sale” where everything in the shop will be disounted at least 100% less than 50% off half price, with half for one, so why pay more elsewhere when you can pay more here. (Sale to be advertised on Moron FM)

P.S. Some of you have got your hot little hands on our tapes. We know you have. Search through your walkmans and tape collections for the following :

Anthrax – Attack of the Killer B’s

Pixies – Trompe Le Monde/Doolittle

Guns ‘n Roses – Use Your Illusion II

Red Hot Chili Peppers – Mother’s Milk

King Missile – Detachable Penis album

Snap – The Madman’s Return

Nirvana – Nevermind/Pearl Jam – 10

The Cult – Love/Sonic Temple

Pixies – Bossanova

If you bring them back, we won’t even hassle you – think of it as an amnesty. We will even let you wear our shop mirkin. Come and see us. We can be reasonable

Tech Tips – Downhilling (some of the basics)

1. Look where you want to go. Your bike will follow where your eyes are looking, almost as if you are laying rails with your eyes. Look at the smoothest part of the track, the best line, the gaps between the ruts. Never look at what you don’t want to hit eg. “Hey, look at that big rock, that would really hurt if I rode into that..” is not what you want in your mind. Look around obstacles.

2. Relax, keep your arms and legs bent, and your hands relaxed. There is more travel in arms and legs than in any suspension bike you can buy, so stand with your legs bent and make full use of them. Dropping the saddle a couple of inches nearly always helps, and it also allows you to get down over the rear tyre on verts. Open and close your hands when you get the chance, so that you don’t get locked onto your handgrips. Breath deeply into your stomach and stay calm.

3. Play. Trying to go faster will make you tense. Relaxing and playing on your bike will make you faster. Experiment about, try different lines, different techniques. If you are tense, do some skids, bunnyhop, pull a wheelie, relax and stop trying so hard.

4. Pick the best lines. Lines are the first thing to master – the foundation of going fast. Here are the 5 main ones for a 90 degree RH corner. The apex of a corner is the point at which you can see the rest of the track, and on an unknown or blind corner, this is the point at which you decide how to exit.

– 1. The out/in/out line is the fastest, keeps momentum highest, and would usually be first choice in ideal conditions.

– 2. The in/in/out line is ideal for overtaking on the inside, stopping someone behind overtaking, or where there there is a centre berm coming into the corner. In practise, this is the most commonly used line.

– 3. The out/in/in line would be used if the next corner was a left hander, or if there is a centre berm coming out of the corner. It’s also good for off-camber corners.

– 4. In/in/in has the slowest momentum, but in some situations, especially when the going gets rough, the tightest line can be the fastest.

– 5. Out/out/out is a good one for blind corners where there might be oncoming traffic. In driving terms, this is the only line where you would not cross the centre line. In general, it is not the fastest.

The important thing is to keep lines in mind, and use the right one at the right time. Think ahead and set yourself up for the next corner or pass.

5. Steer with your brakes. When the front brake is used hard, it makes the bike go straight, so do your hard front braking before you go into the corner. The rear brake is your rear wheel steering. Don’t skid on every corner (sideways is not forwards, and forwards is fastest) Skid the rear when you need to tighten up, or change direction suddenly. A quick back end slide can change your line faster than anything you can do with the front end.

6. Weight the outside pedal. Make sure your inside pedal is up, and most of your weight is on the outside. This keeps the bike pushed hard into the corner, and stops the tyres washing out.

7. Set your bike up. Good brakes, good front tyre, every thing tight and reliable are the essentials. Good suspension forks and clipless pedals both help enormously. Strong components give increased confidence, especially handlebars and stem. An easy to use quick release on your seatpost makes it much easier to put your seat down fast (ie. use a heavy steel one that works!) Move hand controls inwards to give plenty of hand space. Wide handlebars give more leverage.

8. Read the terrain. Float over the rough stuff, brake on the smooth bits, use berms, straighten out your lines and ride smoothly if it’s wet, cross ruts at 90 degrees, look ahead.

9 lists of 10 things you never needed to know

10 alltime worst common MTB designs 10 useful things to have on your bike
1. U-brakes (under chain stay brakes) 1. Bar ends
2. Elevated chainstays 2. Suspension forks
3. Straight blade fork legs 3. SPDs and shoes
4. Dia Compe 986 brakes 4. Bottle and cage
5. Biopace chainrings 5. Pump and strap
6. Suntour Express gearshifters 6. 6V lighting set
7. Superlight Taiwanese handlebars 7. Tube and tyre lever
8. Suspension handlebar stems and seatposts 8. Real tyres
9. Presta valves on MTBs 9. Walkman and out there sounds
10. Shimano non-centring brake straddle wires 10. Paraphenalia
10 Marketing Haves 10 of the best improvements in the past 5 years
1. Lightweight quick release skewers 1. Indexed shifting – 7sp top shifters
2. Lightweight minimalist saddles 2. Shimano 7sp cassette rear hubs
3. Lightweight 3. SPDs & lace/velcro MTB shoes
4. A-head sets 4. Manitou suspension forks
5. Microdrive gearing systems 5. Bar ends
6. MTB Action Magazine 6. Panaracer Smoke & dart tyres
7. Underbar shifters 7. 1 1/8″ O/S headsets, & allen key headset locknuts
8. Cheap suspension forks 8. 150mm handlebar stems & 400mm seat posts
9. Disc brakes 9. Short wheelbases & sloping top tubes on frames
10. Titanium 10. Expensive American stuff to drool over
10 Cool Brand Names 10 Uncool MTB Brand Names
1. Ballistic (Suspension forks) 1. Hopper *   * These ones get extra points for brand lameness
2. Extreme (MTB) 2. Ferruno *
3. Manitou (Suspension forks) 3. LL Bean
4. Fox Racing (Clothing) 4. Supergo
5. Clark Kent (MTB) 5. Huffy
6. Nuke Proof (Hubs) 6. Alurad
7. Camelbak Humpty Pak (Bladders) 7. Yotoka
8. Killer Loop (Sunglasses) 8. Norco
9. Orange Clockwork (MTB) 9. Allsop
10. Wheels Manufacturing (Bolts) 10. Checkered Pig
10 Most Popular Brands of MTB in USA – 1993 (in order) 10 of the brands of MTB most common in Wellington
1. Specialized 1. Marin
2. Trek 2. Diamond Back
3. Cannondale 3. Avanti
4. Bridgestone 4. Yak
5. Diamond Back 5. Giant
6. Schwinn 6. Milazo
7. Giant 7. GT
8. Gary Fisher 8. KHS
9. GT 9. Specialized
10. Klein 10. Extreme
10 things we most frequently get asked for that we don’t sell
1. Skateboard parts
2. Guidebooks and maps
3. Electrical appliance repairs
4. Fishing equipment
5. Drugs
6. Nuts, bolts and other hardware
7. Car parts
8. Industrial Grade concrete
9. Mountain bikes for $200 or less
10. Blow up doll accessories
Next month :
10 Bizarre things you can do with a mirkin

CS Competition #407 – The Lamest Cycling Magazine in The World Competition

What will it be? “Australian Long Distance Performance Endurance Cyclist Psychophysiology Journal”, “UK M57 Motorway Time Trial Weekly”, “California New Age Environmentally Friendly Cycle Commuter Illustrated”.

Find the most dross passage from the most lame cycling magazine and bring it in for our perusal and critical dissection. We will put the saddest piece of journalistic cyclogarbage in our next newsletter (to be published no later than December 1998), and the winner will receive a genuine sheepskin mirkin. We will also send an award and a sheepskin mirkin to the winning publication.

Rider Profile

Name : Joanna Dale

Age : 23

Suburb : Breaker-happening-Bay

Occupation : Student, part time Courier, Fitness Assessor at Evolution Gym, Nanny and any other work except prostitution to get money to go to the Worlds

Bike : Reiker, and hopefully also an AMP full suspension real soon, yippee

Components : ’94 XT, computer, blah, blah, I don’t really know

Extras : Mud, ’cause I’m too lazy to clean it properly, vibrating ribbed seat post (oops, that’s rude)

Most awesome ride/race : Mt Fyffe downhill, 18 minutes of absolute adrenalin rush, and a helicopter ride as well. NB : Don’t eat the food provided at the Kaikoura pub afterwards, it’s really bad

Other favourite rides : Karl’s not bad (oops, more rude stuff), Mt Climie and the Tongariro Forest crossing is fun even when you get lost and have to bush bash.

Favourite Food : Lollies, had better say fresh fruit to sound a little healthy, hot chocolates, all that really good training food

Favourite Music : Have a really wide taste, ranging from Matt Bianco to Nine Inch Nails. Really depends on my mood. (With that wide range, makes it sound like I have real big mood swings.) Willie Nelson’s “On the Road Again” is an all time classic.

Favourite Films : The Leading Edge – fantastic NZ adventure movie, everything you could want in your life in one movie. Anything involving Indiana Jones & swashbuckling sword fights ie Princess Bride.

Ambitions/Aspirations :

– Not to wipe out in my run at the Worlds

– To keep on having heaps of awesome adventures & doing crazy things

– To get loose on my mounatin bike during downhills

– To actually use my degree, finish the new studies I’ve started and to one day have a career/job, shock horror.

– To get good at snowboarding

– Fly across Africa in a Tiger Moth

– And an endless list of other ambitions & aspirations. Outdoors adventure, hanging out with my mates and having fun is going off.

Hellride of the Month

Snow down to 200m we eagerly await. This being Wellington, the aforementioned snow doesn’t materialise. Desperate for snow frotage, we don our cold weather mirkins and head out to the Hutt. Only in the upper reaches of bogan country can snow be found. Mt Climie is engulfed in a full on snow storm and looks like a scene from a “Scott and his faithful husky dogs die of exposure in Antarctica” type docu/drama, so we go for the easier Karipoti – Three Skulls Rd – Totara Park circuit. “Stinking hot” is not a phrase generally associated with snow, but I definitely recommend polypropolene, polar fleece and gortex for that “hope we get back into the icy southerly again soon before I explode” feeling.

We hoof up the Karapoti gorge to the concrete bridge, then hang a left and grovel up to the top ridge. Here we meet real snow, chill out, make cell phone calls to rival shops, burn exotic vegetation and head for the first downhill. It’s a fast, freshly bulldozed, slightly muddy 4 lane highway, good for 60kph even into the southerly headwind. We stop by the shed at the top of Three Skulls Rd and ride up to the ridge overlooking the Hutt Valley. There’s a hangglider launch platform sticking out over the void, with a couple of hundred metres of sheer drop into the bush below. Hangglider freaks have got to be out there, but the view is awesome, with big black clouds hovering ominously about.

Next is what we’ve been waiting for, a big, long downhill, with heaps of slippery hairpins, seemingly endless as it winds all the way down to Totara Park. Bugle gets to test out his new suspension bike, and Steve blows everyone away. Then it’s back round to the cars for heater testing action. (Yes, that’s heater, not hooter!) Were we the only punters in Wellington stupid enough to be out playing in the snow? Are we the ultimate hell men? Do Ferrunos break?

Tosser of the month award goes to Rik, who after crashing, thought it would look cool to kick his bike in front of some onlookers, and whose SPD cleat happened to crumple in his top tube, necessitating tube replacement. Stylee move, Rik.

Nihlists Ride Hard Detail- copy.JPG (88663 bytes)


This months Cycle Services Mirkin Award for dross Tosshead non-frot journalism goes to More magazine of Auckland.

Despite being written for pseudo arty coffee shop worshipping Aucks who wouldn’t be able to pick a trend if it ran up the leg of their flared polyester jumpsuits, they still insist on having features like the one on Page 28 of the September issue “What’s In/What’s Out”. Included in the What’s Out list is : Mountain bikes – Who’s seen a dirty one lately? – even the $399 ones are overpriced. Included in the What’s In list : Aussie muscle cars – a stylish personal statement, and Vespa motor scooters – a charismatic retro-chic scooter.

With hit picks like this, we have to wonder if Auckland cafe society is starting to inbreed.

Anyway, here’s a couple of our own – What’s In : Mirkins – when Auckland trendies catch on to these, they are going to be huge. What’s Out : Auckland trendies – who’s seen a clean one lately? Even the $25 ones are overpriced.

A special offer to Auckland readers – own your own Mirkin. Send $14.95 to “Mirkins Unlimited”, 174 Cuba St, Wellington, and we will send you an exclusive hand made mirkin. Simply clip out the coupon and send today!

Mirkins Unlimited Limited Offer – Yes please rush me my very own mirkin today.

__ Large __ Male __ Black

__ XL __ Female __ Blonde

__ Fully Frot Size __ Unisex __ Purple

Name : Mr/Miss/Mrs/Ms/Dr ___________________________

Address : Street : ___________________________________

Suburb : __________________________________

City : Auckland

Extra styling filth points to Extreme Bicycles for their new 95 MTB brochure. While other bike companies are writing stuff that makes punters want to go to bed, these guys are writing stuff that makes punters want to go to bed with their bikes. These guys are more out there than we are, we thought, as our eyes alighted on this fully marginal prose – the bike as sex object :

“Extreme Frenzy” … A lethal mix, all killer, no filler! Sneak up behind it and take your mount – you’ll get a tingling sensation, that’s just your hair standing on end. But you hang on tight ‘coz this baby is going to buck your brains out.

This is frot we thought, where do these guys get their stuff from? But hey – what’s this we see? The “Extreme Reactor” is just waiting to GO OFF! Is this a clue? And then, reading on further, the “Extreme Chaos” gives it all away – NIHILIST FEATURES! It says in big block letters. “Sphink” say Team Nihilist, “Where are our royalties?” A new suspension frame will do nicely, and all will be forgiven!

Speaking of Extreme, we were most impressed to hear that their top sponsored rider – “Animal” – was arrested in America while over for the Worlds. He was picked up for making “whooping noises” in a shopping complex. He didn’t go quietly. Maybe he’s been riding an Extreme Frenzy

Tech Tips – Seat Height

Regular readers may recall back when we recommended FLAT SADDLES (ie. Not pointing up or down, but approaching that which could be considered parallel with the ground).

The next step is having your saddle at the right height. For efficiency, the best position is to have a slight bend in your leg. To measure this, sit on your bike in your usual riding shoes, drop one pedal down to the lowest point, and with the ball of your foot above the axle of the pedal, and your foot parallel with the ground, check that you have a slight bend in your leg. (Raise or lower your saddle till you do!)

There are a lot of myths surrounding this process. The most common is the old heel on the pedal/straight leg one. This is not accurate – if you do it in bare feet, you will end up the saddle too low. If you do it in shoes, it will vary depending on how thick your heels are.

Another common myth is that there is some accurate rule by which seat height can be measured (like, 1.075 times inner leg measurement). Variables include foot size, foot to leg length ratio, pedalling style (toe down, flat or heel down), pedal clip system, riding position, crank length, pedalling speed and individual preference.

In the end, the easiest method is to set the seat up with a slight bend in your leg, then fine tune it by trying a few mm up or down until you find what feels best. Mark the post with a marker pen while experimenting, and file or saw a mark in it when you have decided.

The next step is to get a downhill seat height. Threre are some people who say that you should ride with the seat at the same height all the time, but these people are almost invariably not the fastest downhillers. A lower seat makes it easier to move around on the bike, and lowers your centre of gravity. Too low, and it’s hard to pedal on the uphill sections. Try dropping 2cm for moderate tracks, 6cm for hardcore, 12cm for verts, Again experiment about, then put in some marks. A grunty, easy to use, steel quick releasing lever and clear marks makes the whole process a lot faster. (Don’t do this if you are a poseur with a titanium seat post, because marking it will probably make it crack.)

Finally, make sure you check your seat post height regularly – some of them slide down a little when ridden hard.

New Stuff for 95 – Hot Picks & CU Lemons

Not having a huge spare wedge to spend on zipping over to America, we have to admit, we have not been hanging out at any huge international bike shows, nor have we set up any massive new import deals to flood the market with thousands of the latest titanium coated gear cables.

But, we did check out the NZ bike expo in Auckland, and we have read all the latest mags, so here’s an outline of what seems to be happening. The NZ expo is way too early, so there was hardly any 95 stuff on display. This essentially makes the expo a complete waste of time, so if it’s not moved to a later time slot next year, the NZ expo’s days are numbered.

Although there were virtually no suspension bikes on display in Auckland, it’s fairly clear that the future advancement of MTB design and marketing lies in full suspension bikes. There are so many different designs out there, but so few that look like they have paid any attention to the past 20 years of motorcycle suspension development, or even to basic properties of physics, like leverage. We pick the Specialized FSR, and the AMP (and clones) as two intelligent designs that really work, and are available in NZ. Fox rear suspension units are most likely to become the industry favourites, and are likely to be the best backed up in NZ.

On the front, Manitou would again be the first choice, with an excellent new range, including a beautifully designed elastomer fork retailing at under $700, and an elastomer/oil fork for downhilling at $1150. Rockshox have got some cool new forks including the Judy DH, a monsterous bright red, downhill fork – not light, but very grunty. AMP are continuing to refine their ingenious fork, and are definitely worth considering as a long travel cross country fork.

Colours for 95 tend very much towards the blue, purple and shades of silver, with subtle touches of metallic. The big question is “Will green anodising be the in colour this year?” We say not – it will be available, but blue & purple anodising is here to stay.

The choice of bike brands this summer will be huge with Specialized, Marin, Yak, Reiker, Balance, GT, Bauer, Giant, Trek, Alpine Stars, Avanti, Diamond Back, Milazo, Cannondale, Scott, Klein, Raleigh and Extreme all offering full ranges of mountain bikes. The strong NZ dollar combined with a glut of competing brands means that prices will probably stay about the same as last summer. We predict a roadbike revival, as mountain bikers buy second bikes and take to the streets.

Components are still a bit of a nightmare with Shimano continuing to screw up all interchangability and sizing standards. By redesigning their components every season they can keep one step ahead of all of the other after market manufacturers, but there are now several European and American brands like Campagnolo, Sachs, Dia Compe, and Mavic who are gaining ground – we’re keeping our fingers crossed, because 90% market share is not healthy.

Ultimately, as the number of bicycles keeps on growing, the number of choices keep growing too, and the market becomes more segregated and specialised. Look out for “downhill” as the next big trend, with a whole new sub culture of thrashers, and “downhill poseurs” with full face helmets and big suspension.

This year we will have the most styling and going off selection of mountain bikes we have ever had, including some awesome buys in the $800 to $1800 price range, and a fully frot range of suspension forks, so hopefully there will now be absolutely no reason whatsoever why anyone would go anywhere else, unless they’re playing better music.

Sep 94 RRP + Boure ads copy.JPG (102768 bytes)

Mervin meets the Feds  – by Solly

Mervin slowly woke up. Stumbling out of bed, he rubbed the sleep out of his eyes. Then he tripped over his dresser, shouted “Damn!”, and rubbed the sleep out of his eyes properly. He got dressed, then examined himself in the mirror. “It’s a good day to ride,” he said to his steely-jawed reflection. Then he jumped on his fully suspendered RSJ2001 and rode through the kitchen, over a sofa, around the stereo and out the front door. Then disaster! His gel-damped, front rebounder axle retention unit bottomed out on the kerb, propelling him swiftly into a stream of oncoming traffic! He felt, rather than saw, the blur of a car below him, and using his extensive trials skills, honed by minutes of not much practice, Mervin managed to land violently on the bonnet of a police car. 3 or 4 kilometres later, Officer Blunt remembered where the brake pedal was at and pulled over. As he came to a stop, Mervin rolled off the car, grunting and rubbing his shoulder. Leaning out of the window of his battered car, the cop said “Here, where’s your ‘elmet, son?” ” I don’t need one, mate, I’ve got an afro!” exclaimed Mervin cleverly, pointing at his number one. “Er…is approved?” asked Blunt uncertainly. “Back off man….don’t get technical,” growled Mervin, as he untangled his bike from the windscreen and backed away. Somewhat confused, Officer Blunt was slow to react as Mervin leaped onto his bike, then fell off screaming and holding his nads, then vomited, then turned his bike the right way up and remounted it very slowly and pedalled off into the distance on the wrong side of the road. Turning to his partner, who was busy picking glass and Shimano grease out of his moustache, Blunt said thoughtfully, “Blimmin cyclists! Think they own the road!” Then without looking, he pulled into the traffic, turned on his lights & siren and drove up and down Aro St very fast for the hell of it.

Rider Profile

Name : Evan Freshwater
Nickname : Bongwater
Age : 23
Suburb : Newtown
Occupation : Professionally umemployed
Bike : Cadex CFM-3
Components : LX/XT
Extras : Marzocchi XC500’s, twisty wheels, computer,anything to weigh the bastard down.
Most awesome ride/race : Orongorongo classic, Karipoti
Other favourite rides : Mt Vic, Hawkins, Rotorua forestry, Belmont trig, Akatarawas
Favourite food : Curry & chillies, yum-char, thai, anything hot & spicy especially before a race – a good incentive to finish fast.
Favourite music : Pixies, Metallica, Pogues, Ministry, preferably fast and loud
Favourite films : A Clockwork Orange, Nikita, Highlander, Terminator II
Favourite books/mags : Mountain Bike, Adventure, Lord of the Rings, MBA
Ambitions/aspirations : To see how high I can get without a plane. To place in any race, anytime, anywhere, anyhow.
Hot comment action : It’s better to be pissed off than pissed on!

Letter of the month

Wheels, Henry, Oli, miscellaneous Cycle Services paparazzi, greetings, Pete here X Office Express grunt beaming in from hippie infested urban Nelson. Well, July 25 came and went, innocent families fell victim to senseless acts of excessive violence at the hands of deranged psychopathic murderers, movie stars with impossibly white teeth and beautiful children indulged themselves in sexually deviant team sports, the earth planet turned, and Peter’s CS account remained unpaid. For these happenings there are reasons. None of which concern you or I except perhaps the outstanding CS account I find myself responsible for. The reason the account remains unpaid is simple: have no idea how much money I owe you.lf you could send me a copy of my account will be only too happy to send a cheque covering the outstanding balance. Bob Marley had dreadlocks.

Peter Gilbert.

Bugle’s Crossword





























































1. 7sp equipment monopoly holder 2. Steering device

4. To rotate

3. Pseudo Italian NZ bike
8. Fabric not used for cyclists leggings 5. Manufacturer of aluminium
10. Leather seat cover 6. Titanium cycle manufacturer
11. Roadie team 7. Overtake
12. Quasi legendary cycle mechanic 9. Superior MTB team
13. Direction Bugle hates to go in

15. Expensive dubious after market components

14. Bodily pistons 17. Locate visually
16. Finest exponent of 25 Across 19. Type of bar end
18. Exuder of sweat 21. Primal emotion
20. Used to keep dirt out 22. Placing of foot
22. Rik’s top tube had one 23. Traditional Sunday meeting time
24. Style 17 Across rides
25. Make of rim
26. Receptacle for grease

Sep 94 Cartoon-1 copy.JPG (390972 bytes)


Time to do the Xmas shralve thing. Grab your mirkin and frot out with this free marginal newsletter. Go off today

So who was that guy in the CS gear on Moro Sports Extra? And why was he trying to bounce down Mt Fyffe on his head? Hot tips for thrill seekers – if you want a wild time, go downhill really fast, keep a loose grip on the bars and change gear while hitting a big rock. Giro helmets do break in two if you hit them hard enough. What a fully marginal frot out, lucky I was a bit out there to begin with, or I’d be worried now.

Hot off the press – new cycling publications apart from this newsletter. The Kennett brothers – Cycle Services “Wellington 1995 Mountain Bike Guide”. This small purple and green bumbag sized book contains over 40 local rides, with all the info you need to get lost in the wops. It’s only $9.95, or free if you buy a new mountain bike, so save money by buying a bike.

For those of you who are thinking of buying a bike, we have the new “Cycle Services Mountain Bike Buyers Guide”.

The aim is to give new bike buyers a good overview of MTB technology, and includes answers to the more basic stuff we get asked most frequently, and a Shimano groupset chart and bike pricelists. This one’s free even if you don’t buy a bike.

Tossers of the millenium award for being bogus beyond the call of usual standards of bogusness goes to a local bike shop currently advertising half price “Answer” bikes. Answer are about as likely to start selling cheap Asian department store bikes as Clodhopper brand bikes are likely to win the world downhill MTB champs. The current price of Answer frame sets is $5200 for the cross country, $6000 for the downhill and $3900 for the hard tail. We would be more than happy to sell you one, so queue up and place your orders now.

Bad news for hard drinking cycle couriers – we’re not having a BBQ and beer swill in the back yard this Xmas. Cleaning up the yard the next day with a hangover was too horrific to be repeated. All the unhappy cycle couriers who were hanging out for it will no doubt be staying fully sober this Xmas. Not…..

Tech Tips – 95 Shimano

After having just attended the Shimano product seminar for 95 stuff, here’s the lowdown. All the road groupsets like Dura Ace, 600 Ultegra, 105 and RX100 have stayed the same. There is a new line of cheap roadie gear called RSX, that’s like RX100 but cheaper. The mountain bike stuff, as usual, has changed. The good changes include beefy parallax hubs for XTR, alloy quick releases, cartridge brake pads, 24 speed for LX, and some cool looking SPD pedals and shoes promised early next year. There’s also more use of stainlees steel nuts and bolts, which should last longer.

In the “take it or leave it” department – “IG” or “Interactive Glide” drive chain parts, which makes downshifting slightly smoother – hardly a problem before, and of course a whole pile of new parts; “M” system brake cables which are thinner and smoother than standard, but of course, a non standard size. The stuff works well, but more incompatibility is not high on the list of desired attributes. In the step backward department, we have optical gear indicators on XTR! (They already went too far up the range before), and “Easy set” front derailleurs on cheaper groupsets – easy, but very ugly. They also seem to have stopped making top-shifters. Some years ago, Shimano stopped making round chainrings, and only made biopace. Never mind.

Overall, the 95 stuff is good, and the stuff they make best is excellent – their rear hubs, clusters, front & rear derailleurs, brakes, bottom brackets, SPD’s and MTB shoes all fully go off. The current obsession with smooth shifting really misses the whole point – gears are a tool to go fast, not an end in themselves. Which brings us to chainrings. The new microdrive chainrings are a smaller bolt circle, and there are no longer chainwheels available for them. If you want a big gear for downhill, or you are a big grunter with legs like tree trunks, the options are to buy an adapter and fit a road chainring on the outside, or to fit another brand of crankset, like a Sachs, with the std size chainrings. You will also need to change the bottom bracket and front derailleur. It is cheaper to learn to pedal faster and wait till 1996 when Shimano will apparently be making some bigger chainrings. At present, chainrings are not a happy subject. The bolt circle diameter (BCD) for std road cranksets is 130 BCD, for std triples it’s 110 BCD with a 74 BCD inner ring, and for 94 & 95 Shimano triples it’s 94 BCD with a 58 BCD inner ring. (Questions not to ask : #1. Why?)

So that we don’t have all our buyers guides snapped by punters wanting to techno-weenie over the Shimano chart, we have included it here too, for all you confused regulars. (Aren’t all our regulars confused yet?)
























Exage ES

STX Ltd Ed


Exage LT





Altus A10



Altus A20

Alivio Upgrd




Altus C10


Acera X



Altus C20

Altus C50

Altus C90

Bugle’s less arcane Crossword

After a lot of complaints that Bugle’s last crossword was too arcane – only one person successfully completed it – this month’s one is much easier. If you can’t do it you are a few sausages short of a piss-up. Just to make sure you get in the right frame of mind, we have included :

Bugle’s Hot Crossword Tips – How to do the crossword like a Maestro

1. Grow dreads

6. Listen to dub music

2. Smoke heads

7. Drink strong coffee

3. Wear smelly gloves

8. Be arcane

4. Buy a Specialised FSR

9. Find out what arcane means

5. Bleat loudly

10. Say “Cheese”


1 2 3 4 5
       7 8 9
      11 12 13 14
        15 16
17 18 19
20   21
23   24


1. US fashion/sports eyewear manufacturer
4. Assisted by pacemaker
6. Manufacturer of hubs and disc brakes
7. Manufacturer of hubs and rims
8. Type of tree seen often when riding
10. Manufacturer of rims
13. Substance that mountain bikers hate to eat
15. Type of absorber used in suspension systems
18. Manufacturer of shocks and shock pumps
20. Manufacturer of rims
22. Regularly experienced sensation of discomfort
23. Skin condition caused by excessive riding in the sun
24. To utterly cease forward motion
2. Rims are treated this way
3. US cycle manufacturer
4. Mover of air
5. American manufacturer of bogus aluminium & titanium frames
8. Popular artificial lubricant
9. Consume to fuel the body
11. Type of acid causing muscle fatigue
12. Expensive handlebar stem
14. Fork ____ determines front end handling
16. Manufacturer of Titanium bicyles
17. Time (anag)
19. Buttock support device
21. Crest of a hill

Downhill Lunacy            By Solly

The stars wheeled slowly in the cold sky above the moons highest mountain range – The Appenines. The last competitor in the lunar downhill championships was readying himself at the top of the start ramp. Bugle-Plus adjusted his cyberhelmet and had a last hit of narco-whiffTM. He checked his megadredz were styling for the holographers who would be lining the course. The galaxies media would be keenly anticipating his run down the tricky low-G descent, as it was his first time in action since his horrific endo on the red slopes of Mt Manganooee on Mars one year ago. That crash nearly finished him, but the tech-heads at “Psycleservitz” had virtually rebuilt him from the pedal-grapples up, theoretically making him 24% more efficient. The only problems remaining were mental.

What was left of his nervous system was still a touch jumpy as he considered the dusty lunar downhill. Then it was time. The start droid gave Bugle-Plus the 10 seconds to go signal. One last look out at the earth hanging low in the blackness over the Mare Ibrium, and the start gate flew open. His leg pistons flailed furiously as he accelerated down the ramp and onto the first straight. His heavily spiked tyres dug into the ground, kicking up a rooster trail of moon dust as he hit his optimum launch speed of 190km in just 11 seconds. The first left hander loomed rapidly and he took it sweetly, getting 45 metres of air before hitting down and grabbing big handfuls of his Shimagura poly-stoppers for the subsequent right-hand hairpin, also flawlessly executed. Through a pitch-black tunnel for 2 seconds, then over some 30 metre whoops and into the most technical part of the run, the Copernicus boulder fields. Threading his way through the massive jagged rocks with skill and body language, Bugle-Plus was pumped. The arti-adrenalin coursed through his carefully designed robo-musculature and he knew it was going to be a great run. Then, right on the good line, a huge chasm yawned. Reacting instantly, he lofted his 2195 model Specialized Susperbike into the black sky, crossing up brilliantly as the flashes of the hologs lit up the course below. Touching down at hell-pace, he flashed through the esses and just the finish remained. He crossed the line with his arms raised triumphantly and cruised to a halt. A huge crowd of fans, media and fellow competitors clustered around as Bugle-Plus waited patiently for his spacesuited tech-heads Ovular and Hendry to unplug his telemetry and separate him from his biowheels. The Old Plymouth boys, Darn Mikkelson and Darryn Henderson the VII had already conceded defeat as Bugle-Plus’ time flashed up on the results screen. He was the winner with a new moon-record time. His comeback was complete… The body parts he had left strewn throughout the solar system, from the ice fields of Neptune to Earth’s own Grand Canyon were forgotten. His machine body was peaking and his long lost humanity faded finally into history as the derricks winched him onto the victory podium to receive the accolades of an awestruck populace. His metallic fist raised the trophy over his head and his reinforced ceramic jaws parted in a steely smile as he considered the challenges of the limitless future – maybe it was time to try the forbidden “Red spot risk run” on Jupiter… After all, you have to be a machine to clean that one! Fin.

Bugle Plus.jpg (54488 bytes)


It was dark, cold and threatening to rain when TEAM CYCLE SERVICES DOWNHILL POSSE (ie. Bugle, Dan and I) left the capital, but by the time we landed in Wanganui’s Lismore Forest the sun god was smiling and all was well. Lismore Lookout, a scenic forest lookout in Wanganui’s largest private forest. The course, which Bugle and I managed to practise only twice, was a 3km slog of loose gravel, angry hairpins and heinously flat headwind ridden straights. The competitors, 70 in all, were allowed three qualifiers to make the final 10. Lots of blood, lots of fear and lots of sweat later the call went out. All 3 CS riders made the grade so up we went and down we went, speed, fatigue, hairpins, bruises and finally the finish line. The boys went off. Dan 1st equal, Bugle 4th, Neil 5th, woohoo. TEAM CS GOES OFF AND NOTHING ELSE. CU, Bronson.

Last Issue’s Crossword Solution




Desperately Seeking Loose Merkins to go.

“First I got stuck behind a slower rider who was wearing a hot pink merkin, and wouldn’t let me pass”.

“A designer merkin attached with a little smear of glue gave her the added confidence she needed to frolic on the beach until sunset. The folks at Mona Workman couldn’t guarantee that the hairpiece would stay in place during the woman’s dip in the water, so they warned her that if she saw a furry animal swimming past to grab it, as it could be a migrating merkin”.

“The sight of my bike cart-wheeling between my legs with my feet still firmly strapped to both pedals permanently engraved on my mind”.

” We can get them in 13 colours” says proprietor Abe Lourie, “and the different sizes allow the wearer to choose between foliage Tom Selleck would be proud of, or sedate smaller tufts”.

“Don’t bother wrapping them, I’ll eat them here” C.J. Mackay

Evening Post’s “About Town”

Wellington is fast becoming a Mecca for the mountain bike cult, in which practitioners wearing tight outfits tackle steep slopes and descend at rocket speeds. Some pay up to $12,500 for a top-line bike, which will go more places than a Lada four wheel drive, and cost not much less.

The Capital’s terrain and the people who cycle over it have spawned a new language; you can get a dose of it in a hilarious newsletter for cultists by partners Ian Gregson and Henry Chlebowicz at Cycle Services in Cuba St.

The newsletter, printed on bilious green paper, is acquiring something of a collectable status, with mirkins for sale adverts, and frequent references to “shralving”. You’ll find mirkin in your dictionary all right, but shralve requires a special definition in the newsletter. Shralve is from a surfing term, and means going to the edge, or pushing to the limit

APRIL 1995


OK, we know this is slack – even New Zealand Triathlete magazine wouldn’t go 4 months between issues, so just to make things up to all our fully gutted punters, here’s a special one off 8 page issue. Our next one is going to be a special trippers edition, so if you are a tripper or you just fall over bungles a lot, send in something that’s gone off so we can show everyone how out there you are. Why is this one so late? – We have been sifting….


Product News

* New from Cactus Climbing is a frotty new back pack, with chest and hip straps to fully secure it for running or mountain biking, external quick release pockets for bottles and food, tie down straps, a big top pocket, and best of all – a camelbak compartment. Costing $133, it’s the ultimate off road pack, available in black/red or black/yellow and called THE HENRY PACK. *

* Cactus Climbing have just moved their operation down to Christchurch, to be nearer all the mountains and stuff, but will continue to make all their stylee bumbags and packs. *

* Powerbar have brought out two new flavours, Banana and Mocha (coffee). The banana flavour is rapidly becoming our most popular flavour. (Clif bars are unavailable in NZ at present, rather sadly. If we can get them again, we will.) *

* For anyone with 94 or 95 Shimano microdrive cranksets wanting lower or higher gearing, we now have some chainrings available. Made by “T.A.” in France, they are very high quality (and expensive), and offer cool sizes like 20 Tooth ($52), 46T ($83), and for really hard core downhillers 50T ($93). *

* Vetta have just unleashed their new heart rate computer. The unit itself can sit on a handlebar mount like a standard computer, or click into a wristband and become a watch. It’s ideal for MTB, road riding, running and multi sport, and is waterproof for swimming. At $235 it’s one of the cheapest HR computers around, and saves the need of having a cycle computer too. *

* Top American brand Yodaka will soon be available in NZ, and we will be stocking them. See the hot review on page 3 *

* For those of you who haven’t already checked out the new range of CS T-shirts, they’re more out there than ever, and as they’re hand dyed, no two shirts are identical *

Things to say to helmet freaks – # 1 in a series :

Bogus question: Where’s your helmet? – Dog response : Where’s your leash?

Fascist directive : Get a helmet – Sheep response : Get a sheep

Next month

CS Exclusive : “Bungles – their secret life”

Is Bugle really a bungle? – Reader vote

“The thing from New Plymouth” – a photo essay by Bronson

Tech Tips – How many inches in a millimetre?

Another typical Friday lunchtime at CU Services, here we are sifting about, cleaning our own bikes and arguing about which Soundgarden album to listen to, when out of the blue some paisley purple polar fleece and Rovenstonk sandal clad cheesie cycle tourists with matching fluoro yellow bum bags start checking out the scene. After spotting a 19″ frame label on one of the bikes, one of the cheesies becomes agitated. “Vas ist dis inches thing you haf here?” he demands, “Ve haf metric now fur everythink, ja!?” he continues, horrified by our quaint colonial habits.

Later I imagined a world with bicycles without inches, and all of a sudden started to understand why cheesie bikes are so CU. A bike without inches is like a cycle courier without any hooter – something is seriously amiss.

Bikes are a strange mixture of metric and imperial measurements, and they took a long time to get that way. Originating in England, France, Italy and America over 100 years ago, each country came up with their own individual sizes for everything. Later when the Japanese got into bike manufacture, they tried to standardise everything by making up a whole lot of new sizes. All the loony French sizes got CUed along the way, and what we have left now is a mixture of all the sizes that have managed to stick around for a while. Taking a typical new mountain bike, it will have 26″ wheels (American), an 1 1/8″ headset (sometimes called 25.4mm), 23″ wide handlebars, a 17″ frame (45cm for cheesies), and 1/4″ bearings in the rear hub. It will also have 175mm cranks, 265mm spokes, a 31.4mm front derailleur, 5mm allen key bolts, a 28.6mm seat post, and a 135mm handlebar stem. But the pedals will have a 5/16″ thread, the bottom bracket will be English 24 Tpi (threads per inch), and the suspension will weigh 3lbs and boast a full 2″ of travel (or is that 5cm?).

As long as everyone uses the same measurements for the same bits, everything is cool. What gets confusing is stuff like weight. A simple question like how much does this bike weigh? becomes a major toss fest. So let’s sort this out – bikes are weighed in pounds, OK, POUNDS (LBS)! Handlebars are weighed in grams (130g will break….), but bikes are weighed in pounds (23lbs will float away). Kilos are for body builders and coke heads, and if anyone says “my bike weighs 5 kg” what they really mean is “my bike weighs 34 1/2 lbs, but if I say it in kgs nobody will know what I’m talking about.” Now, how long was that appendage again?…..

Off Road Test – Yodaka Grizzly SLC

Reprinted with kind permission from “Bicycling Action Magazine”, Jan 95

At last a manufacturer has seen fit to bring out a carbon/titanium/aluminium alloy bonded frame – all of us in the “BAM” tossing crew have been dreaming of a frame like this since we first read about it in Velo-news last month.

In the plush offices of our cheap Californian suburban shed, that we pretend is in a hip downtown location, over a big feed of McDonalds, that we pretend is authentic hot Mexican nachos from a hip downtown cafe, we drooled over the new “Griz”, along with the post dated cheque from Yodaka that will pay for our new Jeep 4-wheel drive that we need for posing at the McDonalds drive thru. The great guys at Yodaka really know their bikes, so they were sure we’d be able to say plenty of good things about the Griz.

Any bike with three materials that aren’t steel is a sure hit with the tossing crew, and before we even got the bike out of the box we knew it was a winner. As if anything else was needed, our eyes alighted with joy on the “SUN Minstral” eyeletless 180 gram rims laced up with triple butted NODTECH spokes and anodized alloy nipples. With a pair of hoops like this, this baby will float up hills by itself. Don’t let anyone tell you that light weight wheels can’t handle a thrashing – the tossing crew all swear by them, and we ride over the speed humps at the mall carpark 2 or 3 times a week without any problems at all.

Up front is a reliable set of SR Duotwit forks, which although only offering a 1/4″ of travel, seemed to take the edge off all the bumps we encountered – even the infamous McDonalds drivethrough speed bump #2, which they handled with ease, even with four Big Macs on board. While some riders would want more travel, we suspect they are just rough sloppy downhillers who lack the finesse that we, the tossing crew, have built up from years of driving around with motocross bikes on the back of our 4-wheel drives, pretending to be pro supercross riders.

There are few things more important on a mountain bike than an expensive new brand name pair of handgrips with big chunky letters that leave imprints on your hands, and the latest “FATI” grips were the coolest semi-transparent aqua green color. So we know that they would be really good for long rides, because we could just tell, even though we’ve never been on a long ride, except for the time we went for a drive with a cardboard cutout of John Tomac in the window of our 4-wheel drive, when we drove all day, just for the hell of it – now that was a long ride, almost 100 miles, round and round the shopping mall. And afterwards we hung out with “Tomes” or at least the cardboard cutout of him, and had burritos downtown at our favourite Mexican restaurant next door to our downtown offices. But that’s another story.

So what does the new CTAB frame ride like? That is the million dollar question. Well, despite the fact that the tossing crew couldn’t tell the difference between the ride qualities of straight guage wrought iron and boron-plutonium matrix, we will attempt to overwhelm you with in depth seat of the pants anecdotes about how well the titanium soaked up bumps almost as well as the duotwit forks, and how the fat aluminium bits were really stiff but complemented the bendy carbon fibre bits perfectly to give a firm yet harsh ride that both absorbed shock and flexed while still remaining rigid. We were confused too, but we know it’s a great bike, because Hal from Yokada is a good friend of John Tomac’s dad.

We did have a slight problem with the frame on our model coming apart at the joints, but Hal assured us that the production bikes will be bonded with 24 hour araldite, unlike the prototype we rode, which had 5 minute araldite on the joints, because it was a bit of a rush job. We met our landlord Randy out in the carpark, and he liked the bike so much he offered to take it in lieu of this months rent. Randy used to shop at the same mall as John Tomac, so he knows his bikes.

Overall, the Grizzly is 99% perfect, and weighing in at 22 1/2 lbs, we predict it will handle years of hard offroad riding. Not that we’ve ever done any hard offroad riding, but any bike that costs $4800 just for the frame must be good for hard offroad riding. John Tomac’s dog said so…

Karipoti 95

The Downhill

The Karipoti downhill is so popular that with two days to go, offers of $100 for an entry were being made – and some of them were at least 3/4 serious. Saturday’s downhill event had an unusual mix of weather conditions – the summit of Mt Climie was cold and wet, but at “the Shute” where a big crowd of spectators had gathered, it was hot and sunny. Many of the riders were pulling their goggles off half way down because they were too muddy to see through, and then squinting into the bright sun – but not for long, the infamous pitch black tunnel was waiting for them at the bottom.

There were two points of contention in this years downhill, the eliminator system and the tunnel. Mt Climie is essentially a steep, high speed downhill, the emphasis being on nailing the best line through corner after corner. If the race was run following the road right to the bottom, it would favour smooth, confident, technical hill descenders who know the course like the back of their hands. However, showmanship and spectator bloodlust demand that “the Shute” be included – there’s nothing like an 85kph ski jump to get the adrenalin flowing, and this leads to the problem of where to finish the race. Now that the track down to the tunnel has been widened, the bottom of the hill, just before the tunnel entrance would seem to be the obvious finish line. This year the race continued right through the tunnel, and back up a slight rise for about 40m to the finish caravan. A number of riders who lead down the whole of Mt Climie and would have won if the race had finished at the bottom of the hill, were beaten either through the tunnel or in the sprint up to the finish line, by riders who were not as fast downhill, but stronger on the flat. This lead to some upset eliminations, and brings us to the second point – the elimination system.

Last years race had the fairest possible system – best of two timed runs, with the top riders going into an elimination contest against their nearest rival for a possible one place advancement. Unfortunately, the computer timing went haywire, and it was dark before the contest was finished. The racing was however, faster, closer and more spectacular than this year, and the results were an accurate reflection of who was fastest. This year, to make things simpler, timing was ignored, and it was simply a series of win or die elimination runs. It made a refreshing change from the usual stopwatch obsession, but it also meant that where two slower riders were seeded together, one would advance, and where two fast riders were racing, one wouldn’t advance. (One way of avoiding this problem would be to let the fastest of the eliminated riders go through to the next round – a definite incentive to go flat out all the way). Some of the second round runs were decidedly uneven, and as things worked out, the two favourites, Darryn Henderson and Glen Sisarich were both eliminated (after a puncture and a crash) despite looking the fastest in earlier rounds. Still, it makes for interesting racing when the element of luck is given such a free reign, and there were no timing muckups. Team CS didn’t have a great day results wise – Bugle got pipped at the line in his first run after his legs blew up in the tunnel, Karl came up against Darryn Henderson much sooner than he would have liked (but did get in front at one stage, and was right up there to the end), Rod missed out on entering, but did a couple of awesome demonstration runs, and Jo broke her shoulder blade going all out against Jodie MacDonald in the semi-final.

Michael Ronning of Australia was the overall men’s winner in a time of 6:39. Highlights of the day included Johnny Waghorn winning the first ever Mt Climie downhill unicycle elimination race – fully out there; a four way demonstration race between Glen Sisarich, Darryn Henderson, Rod Bardsley and Dean Raven, the grunge shirt and beach short clad hellman from New Plymouth; and the dude who lost it round the corner of the Shute, high sided almost completely off the bike, then miraculously bounced back into his seat and kept going at full pace. The Kennett brothers didn’t quite manage to ride their Tridem blindfolded down hill – the valves kept tearing out of their inner tubes, but they did manage to run another awesome downhill race. Next year we’ll be selling entries on the day outside Te Marua dairy for $100 each. Just don’t tell the Kennetts.

The Classic

As NZ’s first true classic mountain bike race, The Karipoti is something of a leader In it’s field – the biggest, the best run, the frottiest, and now the first to have an entry restriction. As things worked out, a few extras slipped through, and the race started with 1035 entries – so much for being smaller than last year. There is no longer a dodgy looking swing bridge across the river – it’s been replaced with a huge yellow bridge – for a few moments we wondered if this years race would start by going across the bridge instead of through the river. But no, of course not – it wouldn’t be the same, and everybody got to splash through the river and start the hardest race of the year with wet feet.

In the expert men’s race, Jon Hume was notable by his absence – his coach is rumoured to have said that there was one race he wasn’t allowed to do this season – you guessed it. Craig Lawn shralved around the course to win in 2:28. The women’s favourite was back to defend her unbeaten streak – Kathy Lynch has won each of the last six races, but this year she was up against Caroline Alexander of England – ranked #2 in the world, so a full on hell race was on the cards. Our on the spot Team CS reporter, Richard Smith, who is pretty handy on a bike himself, said that although Caroline started behind the expert men, she was riding through them on the first hill like they were going backwards. Richard hung on her wheel for 1/2 an hour, until he couldn’t take the pace any more, and dropped off. Putting on some hell pace down the Rock Garden he caught and passed her, only to have her run past him up the Devil’s Staircase. Unfortunately for Caroline, she had a puncture, fixed it, then later had a high speed blow out on a downhill and went for a fully munting hell crash. Kathy Lynch won again, but Caroline Alexander showed why she’s a top pro, still managing to finish second, smile for the crowd and sign autographs, after having the kind of day that would make lesser riders want to burn their bike and kick spectators out of their way.

Originally, the Karipoti was a take it or leave it hard core 50k race for real mountain bikers, but over the past two years the intro and beginners races have become really popular, and the social atmosphere of the race has grown enormously. The start/finish area is like a carnival with food tents, a massage tent, bike shops and wholesalers, a barbecue, a “Big Boy” icecream van, and hundreds of people milling about. There is a continual stream of riders finishing for several hours. At the huge plush Cycle Services tent, we hung out and ate donuts and drank coffee while checking out the scene – “Hire Master”, Clinton and Duncan helped us out with a 48 sq m tent, we had an eyecatching string of CS T-shirts for decoration, and all we lacked was a circus. Spotting Gwilym of Cactus Climbing in a distant corner of the tent typing furiously into a laptop, I found he was writing a review of the Karipoti, so while he wasn’t looking I paged through it and stole all his ideas. (Next time get it all on disc to save me typing time – Sub editor)

After the race was the wheel building competition, and the limbo and bunny hopping competitions. As you will no doubt all know, Henry was the wheel building champion last year, and the pressure was on. Forgetting the essential wheel “crunch” stand was not a smart move, but luckily we managed to build one out of old timber and nails from the swing bridge. The competition turned out to be Bruce Stewart of Hope Gibbons, who was certainly not as out of practise as he would have lead us to believe – in fact he was flying. Henry was fresh from a scenic helicopter flight over the Karipoti circuit, and not in his best wheel building mindset, but managed to slap one together in 10 minutes and take the title again. The testing by Aussie Michael Ronning was very intense and both wheels held up well. So it’s Henry C.U. national wheel building champion again, we are pleased to report.

The limbo competition was won by a small but highly skilled kid on a very small mountain bike who managed to ride under the pole until his handgrips hit – he didn’t leave a millimetre to spare. The bunnyhop competition got really high and ended with a battle between a BMX dude and one of the Aussie riders on a std MTB. Amazingly the MTB won out – here’s one guy who doesn’t have to get off for logs.

Team CS race of the day was between Adrian and Brent for $20, with classic quote from Adrian, upon catching up with Brent who was fixing a puncture, “Ah, Little Nig, I’ve got you now!”, only to puncture himself round the next corner, get passed by Brent, then crash and tear his leg open trying to catch back up. Meanwhile Bugle got hard and proved that he’s not just strictly downhill by completing a real cross country race. The fastest CS rider was Richard Smith in a time of 2:55. The whole thing was going off and fully frot, congratulations to everybody who finished, everybody who helped out, and of course the Kennett brothers for being out there enough to run it.

Solution to Bugle’s less arcane Crossword

(Obviously not arcaneless enough – not a single one of you mentally inconspicuous sifters managed to get it right!)

  N E U E
H O P E   T M A
  D Z I P P   P I N E
  S   L   A D I R T
D C A E   O K
E   T C R I S S E
M A V I C   L E T
I C   P A I N   A O
T A N N   S T O P


* Have no fear, punters, it’s strictly newsletter time again. It was going to be a special out there edition, but lately things have been getting too straight around here – in fact, there’s been a Roadie revival. Big bunches, skinny bikes, vitamin pills and Tour de France videos are taking over. Our pick for this summer is a major road bike revival, but hopefully all the real mountain bikers will get shaken out of their apathy, get hard, get an angle on and make some shapes.

* Hot and frotty for the 96 season will be affordable dual suspension bikes. Diamond Back are planning five new suspension models, and Specialized will have FSRs at several price points. This summer is likely to be the start of a big suspension boom, and could lead to some exciting new stuff coming through, instead of the previous few years of sifting about with chainwheel size. Dual suspension is faster for downhill, but whether it’s better for cross country is still being disputed. Maybe downhill races should have a separate class for “hardtails”.

* It was CU BU time in Courtenay Place, where Bicycles Eliminated finally got toasted. Stocktaking always used to mean counting up your stock to see what you have, but showing some creativity, BU posted up “Closed for stocktaking” signs as wholesalers literally queued up to take the stock. There were several reasons why this happened, none of which were unpredictable, and there are many other shops presently headed the same way.

* Wellington, in recent years, has been crowded with bike shops desperately trying to make a quick buck and pay the bills, but ultimately a bike shop, like any other business, has to make a profit to stay around. Next time you go to the supermarket for groceries, try asking for a student discount, a subcard discount, a frequent shopper discount, a cash discount, a discount because it’s cheaper in another supermarket, a meat eaters discount, and a discount for not having B.O. They will say C.U., and so would bike shops if they weren’t all competing to put each other out of business. Despite the fact that neither knowledge of bikes, or good business sense seem to be currently considered essential for starting up a bike shop, we predict that in the long run, service will win out over half price sales.

Tech Tips – Brake Pad Replacement

If there’s one part that freaks people out just how fast it wears out, it has to be brake pads. In winter, courier riders fully munt a set of Tektros in two wet days, hardcore thrashers trash a new set of Shimano LX pads in one hard ride – why are pads so soft core? Are we selling marginal dribbler pads?

Leafing through a recent copy of Velo News mag (May 22, 1995), we came across an excellent article on brake pads, in which a bunch of the top brake pads available in the USA were tested for both dry and wet stopping times.

As well as wear and stopping times, another major factor is squeal – some pads are particularly prone to squealing, even with plenty of toe-in. Also, some pads are predictable and progressive, working with a similar feel in both wet and dry conditions, while others grab on suddenly with no progressiveness, or give up the ghost when they are wet. Occasionally, people also seem to care how much the pads cost. Not all the pads that Velo News tested are easily available in NZ, but we do sell the three top rated pads. This chart shows only the pads available in NZ.


Stop Time Dry

Stop Time Wet

CS Top Selling Rating

CS Price (One pair)

CS Wear Rating

CS Squeal Rating

CS Off Road Predictability Rating

Scott Superbrake





Very Good



Ritchey Black





Very Good

Very Good

Very Good

Koolstop Eagle II Black






Very Good


Dia Compe Grey Matter




Ritchey Red




Winwood Polybrake






Very Bad


Shimano XT




2 pr $79.00

(2pr cartridges $24.00)


Very Good

Very Good

Aztec – Madison Grey






Very Good


#1. Scott-Mathauser Superbrakes always win brake tests , and have done for the last ten years. They last forever, but unfortunately have this habit of squealing like a stuck pig on at least half the bikes we’ve tried to fit them on. They are also hard to control in the wet and induce wild and out of control skidding (or worse). Some riders swear by them, but we just swear at them, and consequently sell very few.

#2. Ritchey Black are really good pads, predictable in both wet and dry, no squeal and long wearing. Price is their only drawback – we have tended to push the cheaper Shimano XT pads instead, but after checking out the stopping distances, we have been more into the Ritcheys.

#3. Koolstop Eagle II Black – our number 1 selling pad, because they are cheap and good – everyone likes them, they wear well and don’t squeal. The grey ones are exactly the same, but black looks more frotty.

#3-WET. Shimano XT. If the pads had been ranked for wet weather stopping distances (essentially more important here in Wellington), then Shimano XT would have been third. The cartridge pad replacement system is the business, and although they do wear faster than the Ritcheys, they are totally predictable in the wet, and a good all round pad.

Other comments

* How come Aztecs are our second most popular pad when they don’t appear to work in the wet? 1) Roadies swear by them, so we sell heaps of the bolted ones (although the new Koolstop Eagle bolted pads will probably take over now). 2) They’ve been around for years and people still like them. 3) They get better when they are hot – on a long, dry, hot downhill they can be really good. 4) In the Velo News test, dirty water was sprayed continuously onto the rim, whereas in real riding conditions the pads dry the rim off when first applied, then start to work. Unless you were riding in deep water, the Aztecs would never really take 20 seconds to stop.

* Why do Ritchey make red pads? Maybe, like the Aztecs, the red Ritcheys work better in the real world than the stopping times would indicate, but we found them inferior to the black pads and have never bothered to stock them.

* What is the story with Winwood Polybrakes? They are made of urethene rather than rubber, and have absolutely scary dry weather stopping power (much more than the chart would indicate). Unfortunately, they squeal like a whole flock of stuck pigs, and grab violently, even when toed in outrageously. Seemed like a good idea at the time, but things just didn’t work out.

* How do the cheap Tektro, Raleigh and Giant pads that we sell heaps of compare with these performance pads? The cheap pads wear out at least twice as fast, and at a guess would probably show stopping times of about 3 secs dry and 18 secs wet.

What we recommend

Best pad – Ritchey Black Runner up – Shimano XT

Best value – Koolstop Eagle II Runner up – Shimano XT

Best advice – Brake hard and frot out… Runner up – Frot hard and brake out …

Cycle Services Personal Introductions Column

It’s not pervy or suss, just send us your personal message and let us know what heading you want it under, and you too could be meeting lots of jizz dudes or frotty babes.

Bloke seeking frotty babe

0428 : Hardcore angry nihilist, 25 years, into death verts, coneage and strictly downhill seeks shwing hell babe, prefer holding, no bison hooves, bondage action OK.

0429 : Dave, bogan animal lover, likes to kick back and chill, open minded, down with percy, in the trade, seeks bogan stoner chick, full figure and trippers OK, no freaks please.

0430 : Large guy with staying power looking for stylee freak doris with equipment to make shapes with. Marginal holding, social bongwater drinker, call Kumara if you are the business.

0431 : 29 year old professional poseur, fully anal, tired of the masti scene, in search of perfect goddess to get barred up over, prefer nips, no merkins, fully out there bogus cheesie Heidi types no problem.

Chick seeking hell studly man type dude

0624 : 22 year old blonde Heidi type goddess, trihead with shiny face personality seeks fit nihilist type guy for rude awakenings and freaked drillings. No tossed gopher penises or suss marginal merkin crunchers please, lots of stash for the right guy.

0625 : Ex raver, freaked and well toasted, likes to howl loud, no grogan eaters please, looking for easy going cycle courier type guy who knows how to get an angle on. Sense of humour a must, frottage strictly shralving, how’s your form?

Mixed up tripper seeking cycle apparel

0800 : Bungle loving cycle short fetish shuntmeister raver seeks used Castelli or Giordana for air time masti and frot. Out there and ready to dribble for the right chamois.

Penpals wanted

0911 : Coffee baron seeks female penpal for fax frot and fully suss phone sex. Hot, soft, dribbly, masti, shwing, joss, stylee, hooter and big O. Frequent flyer miles an advantage.

Bugles ET Crossword








































1. Make of lubricant
7. Apex
8. US helmet manufacturer
9. Large group of cyclists
10. French road racing team
11. People not known for their riding ability
12. German component manufacturer
13. Most of them probably haven’t even seen bikes
14. Type of handlebar stem
15. Final link in the braking chain
16. Manufacturer of hubs
1. In good physical condition
2. Device used to join a spoke to a rim
3. Used to move gears
4. Home of AMP bikes
5. US MTB official body
6. Popular cycling mag
9. Type of tube valve
10. Latest in cable technology
11. Newest headset type
15. Measurement used to calculate wheel circumference

Dave Dirty Oven’s Palindromes : And one from Ben :
* Satan oscillate my metallic sonatas * Madam, I’m Adam
* Sex at noon taxes
* A man, a plan, a canal, Panama
* Norma is as selfless as I am, Ron
* Stiff! O, Dairy man, a myriad of fits



After being inspired by the fully frot hell movie “Clerks”, which is about two dudes in a grocery store dealing with an array of bizarre punters and misfit hangers on, we are writing a movie script based on the exploits of the staff of a bike shop surrounded by deviant freaks, and all the dodgy and dubious conversation, adventures and mannerisms that they pull out over the course of a day. It’s going to be called “Punters” and will hopefully be directed by Peter Jackson.

And speaking of freaks, has anyone else noticed how serious everybody is getting about riding these days? – like training programmes, nationals schedules, sponsorship deals, heart rate monitors and race to kill attitudes. Road riding has been like this for years, and the scene has been fully bogus for years too. Only in the past year, since road riding has become more casual and social has it grown in Wellington. These days people are already working way too hard in their jobs, so who needs hard grinding recreation as well. Remember to ride for thrills and go off big time – winners say “NO” to training programmes.

Maybe we are just a bunch of slackers. “The Official Slacker Handbook” contains a section on suitable jobs for the slacker lifestyle, including :

Bicycle Courier : Must be able to weave through rush hour traffic on a stolen mountain bike while under the influence of hallucinogenic drugs.

Bike Store Guy : Learn how to do something with your hands, for once in your life. Expose yourself to the aesthetics of WD40. Get intimate with a wrench.

It’s really gratifying to be recognised officially like this – something that’s got to further enhance the image of bike shop guys everywhere. (Mechanics, take note – tool aprons uncool, grunge shirts cool.)

( Dunn, Sarah : The Official Slacker Handbook. Abacus. UK. 1994)

Hardcore Road Racing

Many of you will have heard of the Colonial Classic Cycle race, which is a real roadie race from Kaitaia to Wellington. (Real roadies as in guys who actually ride for a living, as opposed to guys who ride round a block of factories in Seaview abusing each other.)

It was covered on Sky TV and included some excellent CS footage of Ben climbing out of the window of a van doing 70ks to get a bike off the roof, and of Ben being savaged by a rottweiler, and of Ben being yelled at by Stephen Swart.

Henry was a tour mechanic, so he was too busy to play with dogs. He had to fix and prepare 50 racing bikes every night, including those ridden by Marcel Wurst, Stephen Swart and Graeme Miller. He had a great time hanging out with roadie gurus, and sussed out heaps of new pro mechanic tricks.

Ben – before he got savaged by the rottweiler!

Hot new things

Hot new things we are going off over include :

“Race Face” cranks – if you are looking to upgrade to some hot cranks, don’t buy CNC machined ones like KOOKA – they flex and creak horribly, get cranks that are Cold Forged first, then CNC machined, like Race Face ones. At $469 a pair, they are expensive, but they are lighter, stronger, stylier and cheaper than XTR ones, and not that much dearer than those bogus CNC machined ones.

Wheels Manufacturing (no relation) coloured cable end ferrules ($1.10 each) are a cool way to style out your gear cables and become a fully anal poseur for under $7.

Fox Skyline cycling jerseys in baggy cut plain rust red or navy blue are the hot item for styling casual cycle clothing ($85).

And the latest 96 suspension forks are just peaking. The Manitou SX microcellular oil dampened fork with bonded legs and 2.5″ travel ($895) has been described by “MTB” magazine as “the best fork on the market”. But not to be outdone, Rockshox have upgraded the Judy XC ($850) to 2.5″ travel also, and the rebound dumping is now adjustable as well, so either of these forks will be frotty for cross country.

For downhill, try Judy DH ($1195), now with two new redesigned oil cartridges, or the Quadra 21R, bargain long travel elastomer ($595).

We now sell “MTB” mag for $7.50 and it’s much cooler than “Mountain Bike Action”. Be Christmas, have a day, don’t go postal and we’ll CU round like an elliptical thing.

Tech Tips – Gear Ratios

Gear ratios are a relatively simple thing, all you need to know is one calculation :gear inches = (front chainwheel teeth x rear wheel size in inches) divided by rear cluster teeth. But even Shimano themselves now seem to avoid using this calculation, so it’s not surprising so many people have trouble with it.

When mountain bikes were 18sp (7 years ago), they mostly had 28/38/48 chainrings on the front, and 14-28T clusters on the back. If we just concentrate on the top and bottom gears, this means they had a low gear of (28 x 26″)/28 = 26″, and a high gear of (48 x 26″)/14 = 89″. A spread of 26″ to 89″ is utterly appalling and was improved with 21 speed set-ups like the 1991 Deore DX/XT, giving a spread of 20.8″ to 92″.

XTR 24 speed was a breakthrough, in that it offered a really good range of gears – 12-32T x 24/36/46, a spread of 19.5″ to 100″. This is the direction Shimano should have continued in, the only other improvement would have been a slight change to 11-30T, giving 20.8″ to 108.7″ – a real top gear.

Sadly, they went astray and managed to come up with microdrive – 11-28T with 22/32/42T, giving a spread of 20.5″ to 99″ – certainly not an invention worth changing the industry standards for. The one good thing to come out of this is 11 tooth cogs, which are excellent.

There are basically two easy ways to get a good grunty gear setup. If you have an older bike with full size chainrings, keep them and put on an 11-28T cluster (22.3″ to 108.7″). If you have a new bike with microdrive, get an aftermarket 46T chainring. You may not be able to get all gears in the front chainring because of the short front derailleur, but you will at least have a good spread of gears (20.5″ to 108.7″).

Roadies who were fully anal techno gopher heads used to work out all their gear ratios, then tape a little table of gears to their handlebar stem, so that they could frot out over them while they rode. Luckily for Shimano, mountain bikers are already preoccupied with optical gear displays and computers!

Bugles ET Crossword Solution


Hellride of the Year – Mt Fyffe

Like a magnet for the hardcore, the “Mt Fyffe Psychotic Downhill Race” looms up in November, an invitation to do a real downhill.

Having already been shown on TV several times, a lot of people have a reasonable idea what the track looks like, and they often ask things like “Is it like riding Mt Climie twice?” To put Mt Fyffe into Wellington terms is difficult, because at over 1600m it’s three times the height of any of the hills here. Although it’s rough and rocky beyond belief, and the concentration required to keep everything together is 100% from the top to the bottom with no margin for error, it’s also very fast, with the fastest run averaging over 50kph, and a max of over 75kph.

Imagine riding the tip track twice, end to end, without the uphill bits in the middle, but with deep shingle and rocks spread liberally all over the track. Add a dozen hairpin corners, some 800m vertical drops off the edge and take away all the ruts. Then stick the top two thirds of Mt Climie on the end, just to finish things off, and strap a kanga hammer onto your bike to finish you off.

Not many locals do the race because they think it’s mad to even ride down Mt Fyffe, let alone race it, so of course Team CS just had to be there. Rod, Bugle, Nadia and myself piled down on Thursday night, ready for some practice runs on Friday. Hoping to catch a helicopter up to the top, we were disappointed to find low level cloud made flying too difficult, so we got psyched for a big walk. After an hour and a half of hard pushing, we popped out of the clouds and were treated to a view very similar to looking out of an aeroplane – a sea of white cloud, with peaks sticking up like islands, and in the distance the coast disappearing into the horizon.

By now the sun was beating down on us hotter than a hot thing, so we put on some padding, turned and took the plunge, except for Bugle, who being a living legend, decided to keep going right to the top. It took him four hours to get to the top and back down again – by comparison, Mt Climie takes about an hour to go up and down at the same pace.

At 5pm, the helicopter guys decided it was OK to fly up, so with bikes on a couple of car racks attached to the landing skids, we flew up and did the full run. One part of the track was submerged under a snow drift, so “the chute”, a kind of vertical shortcut, had been put in for added thrills and spills. A complete clean run down gave us a lot more confidence for the race, as it no doubt did for the other 20 or so riders also practising that day.

Afterwards we cleaned the bikes and set up Jo’s new KeeWee Engineering full suspension bike. She arrived on Friday evening, so just for a bit of added pressure had to race with no practice, on a brand new bike she hadn’t yet ridden.

We got up on race day fully amped, and ripped back the curtains to find – a perfect day! Rod got us all psyched up leaping round the motel room like an excited person and in the blink of an eye we found ourselves standing in a paddock at the bottom of Mt Fyffe, surrounded by more suspension bikes than the inside of John Tomacs garage.

Out of the 65 riders there, around 40 had full suspension, and realistically, if you want to do well in the race, say, top 20, a suspension bike is essential. Judy DH forks, Michelin tyres, body armour and a complete absence of fear are also very helpful accessories. My prediction for next year is steering dampeners as well.

This year, things went well. As expected, Darrin Henderson won with a new course record of 11:40. He really is in a different league to everyone else on Mt Fyffe. Rod, hoping for a good run, managed an awesome second place, ahead of some really hard competition, in a time of 12:10. Jo sussed out her bike by the second run and took first place in the Women’s section, for the third year in a row. Bugle finished a fast 15th (all the top 20 times were fully smoking) while I made the stupid mistake of not using Michelin tyres, and tore the valve out of my rear tyre on both runs, but at least managed to do both runs entirely crash free (unlike last year).

Not crash free at all, hell woman of the trip award goes to Nadia, who had a rib crunching crash on the first run, but got back on and finished her run. Although feeling pretty sore, she still went up for a second run after deciding her first time wasn’t fast enough, and turned in a much faster time. Getting third was cool, but even more awesome after X-rays showed she had a broken collar bone, a fractured sternum, and a fractured shoulder, as well as grazing and bruised ribs. Hardcore or what?…..

At the after race do at a pub with a very styling garden bar, Bugle managed to win both a Fyffe Chaingear bike bag, and the much coveted $250 Fyffe Chaingear jacket, and everybody drank an excessive amount of beer. Everything they say about downhillers is true…

There is nothing else quite like the Mt Fyffe race, the organisation and effort that goes into running it is epic, and the ride itself is said to be the toughest downhill in the Southern Hemisphere.

Bugle and Rod go downhilling with the Michelin Man

MARCH 1996

You have probably all noticed the SALE by now – yes, we really have been sifting about in our little purple cave for 5 years now – we started selling stuff the day we got the shop – February 1st 91, and still haven’t gotten around to finishing off painting the shelves.

Over 5 years we’ve dealt with some of the coolest people around, and also run into some real bozos, but overall the one conclusion we’ve reached is that although all types of people ride bikes, our shop is a magnet for freaks, and that’s why we have so many customers.

The changes in the bike business have been pretty huge – for a while back in 91 we were one of only two shops in town, and we got nearly all our stuff from just three wholesalers. We are now in competition with 5 other shops and deal with 43 different wholesalers. These days we have to be totally organised just to avoid getting confused, and some days we even open on time – definitely not something we ever set out to do.

The “WELLINGTON ROCKSHOX FESTIVAL OF MOUNTAIN BIKING” will hopefully put Wellington on the map as the recognised #1 place for Mountain Biking – drop in your most bizarre drug enhanced observation of festival stuff for the next newsletter and we can no doubt make Wellington look really hard core yet again.

Loony hell tripper of the month award goes to Dan Meikelson, who really wanted the $1000 first prize in the mountain bike section at the Birdman contest. Figuring that doing a jump wouldn’t be marginal enough, he poured a bottle of paraffin over himself and set himself on fire. Like a speeding human fireball he got halfway to the takeoff ramp when his chain came off. Frantically scootering along, now completely engulfed in flames, he just made it to the ramp and toppled ungracefully into the harbour, disappearing below the waves in a stylee cloud of steam. Amazingly enough, he still has eyebrows, although we can’t vouch for the state of his arse!

Fin Clothes at 154 Cuba St are now selling hot furry fluoro mirkins – are we TREND SETTERS OR WHAT?

One thing we have always tried to do is teach punters to speak proper, and to make things easier for those of you who are not exactly linguistic trend-setters, we have included the CS 50 all time favourite words, to be sprinkled liberally into your conversations and literature. Get dribbley or be a hoser!

Yet another Bugle type crossword


1 2 3   4 5
6       7
8 9
10       11   12  
13 14
16 17  



Across Down
1. Coating to increase breaking power of rims 1. Popular type of rim brake
4. Make of road frame 2. Geographic features sometimes detrimental to riding
6. Mildly toxic plant found on some tracks 3. Measure of distance
7. Speaks eloquently to offending person 4. Preferred MTB direction
9. Equipment for visual interpretation 5. Inventor of silly looking but very fast track bikes
10. Chemical responsible for fatigue & muscle pain 8. Common treatment for muscle injuries
13. Italian motor scooter 12. Nickname of 4 time Tour de France winner
14. Topping for popular carbo food 14. 5 Down is one
16. To win 15. Name of GT downhill bike
18. Protective crusts over flesh wounds 17. Breathe rapidly
19. Skill essential for maximum cycling enjoyment 18. Process eliminating evidence of rim roints
20. Device used to hold a rim apart

CS Top 50 Marginal Hell Words









Death Vert


Strictly Downhill


Hell Vert











Sphincter out

Out there



Shiny face

Going off


Fully Jizz Get drilled


Kick back and chill


The business






In the trade








Get hard







Frot Out


Fully Marginal



* Now check your stash, get an angle on, make some shapes and be a bit suss, you too could do the business, cane hard, bend your stalk, and become a psycho hose beast.P.S. To anyone who says there’s not enough references to drugs in our newsletters : FREE THE MARIJUANA!!!…..

Tech Tips – How to be a roadie – 5 easy steps

(Or : How I stopped being a sphincter and learned to be anal)

Step 1. Decide on your idol : Remember, you are nobody, so being yourself is not anal. You must become someone else, a pro, preferably European, a name. An idol must do more than win, they must be stylee, and they must be fully now, e.g. Greg Lemond is not suitable – too old school, too many shot gun pellets, etc. Miguel Indurain is not suitable either, even though he wins a lot – he talks with a funny accent and reads tractor magazines – not hip enough. Claudio Ciapucci or Mario Chippalini are better idol material – Italian, well dressed, not too shunty, good poseurs. But remember, whatever your idol does, you do too, whether it’s listening to Uriah Heap records or abstaining from sex, so choose your idol carefully – that’s the key to being anal.

Step 2. Clean your bike : Now we are talking really clean here – inside your chainwheel bolts, the springs on the backs of your brake calipers, the underneath of your saddle, the inside of your pump. Use the white rag test – if you can leave a mark on anything other than the chain, you have failed at being anal. Obviously, you will not be riding your road bike on wet days – that’s what mountain bikes are for. Remember, cleanliness is next to analness.

Step 3. Co-ordinate your outfit : Undoubtedly your idol is signed with one of the top pro teams this season – he is wearing the latest team outfit, so you must do the same. OK, it’s a bummer that all the last seasons gear is now out of date, but that’s the cost of being anal. It’s better to be poor and anal than some tasteless sphincter with too much wedge and last seasons outfit. If you look right, you are right.

Step 4. The right bike : That bike you’ve been cleaning – is it what your idol would ride? Really? No detail is too small here – the right brand of titanium crank bolt plugs, the correct gear ratios, the $170 silk tubulars matured for 18 months in a darkened cupboard wrapped in pages from old Velo News magazines. It goes without saying that your bike is this years model and is worth over $10,000 – if it wasn’t, you just wouldn’t feel comfortable about sleeping with it, and that wouldn’t be anal. (Another reason for keeping it clean!)

Step 5. Pose and be seen : The rewarding time spent alone in the bedroom with your bike is only part of the picture – being successfully anal takes more. Actual riding is required, both to develop suitably shapely leg muscles, and also to be seen. The public in general lack anal appreciation and will never grasp your true stylishness, so the most important person to be seen by is yourself – head for those buildings with big mirror window frontages, for some reflective poseuring, and check out your form. How are your shades, your helmet, your socks?

Leave no stone unturned. Be unceasingly vigilant in your pursuit of analness.

Letterz to the Id

The North Island Cup Winter series has finally finished. The metallic prizes for the Series were limited to a cup for the Senior Mens Epic course winner. The other Series winners and place getters were given either a SUK riding shirt or a bucket of a carciogenic sugar substitute.I bleated and whined (so did someone else) about the dull and matt nature of the prizes (and some other people agreed). Surely I deserve an enormous hoard of glittering baubles. There must have been an oversight regarding the series rewards.

To quickly make amends, send me lots of shiny things or I will jump up and down and hold my breath till I turn blue.

– Mincio Banalli.

Sex shop robbed of blow-up sheep

Two men who broke into a sex aids shop escaped on bicycles with an inflatable sheep, a blow-up woman and a store dummy, New Plymouth District Court was told this week. Police said Nail Bronson, 23, and an associate smashed in the door of Bimborellas early on February 13 and fled on bicycles. Chased by members of the public, they dropped the booty. Bronson was fined $500 and ordered to pay $455 reparation. He also received instant fines for riding without a helmet, having no lights and riding on the footpath. His associate, Bruce Klingon, has not yet been charged.

JULY 1996

Bare news for frotters, it’s here at last, the mid winter newsletter. If you think the gaps between newsletters have been getting bigger, it’s all to do with your obsession with gaps. Gaps go off!

Despite the fact that a lot of team CS has gone soft lately and taken to getting baked and eating marshmallow and pizza while squeezing putty, there has still been a remarkable number of CS riders selected for the world MTB champs in Cairns this September. Congratulations to Nic Blair (XC), Rod Bardsley (DH), Sarah Dee (DH), Gwilym Griffith-Jones (XC), & Jo Dale (DH) on being selected, and Henry who will be NZ team mechanic.

If you are one of the 99% of mountain bikers who will never go to the Worlds, or the 99.999% who will never make it to the Olympics, you may still be a worthwhile person. Fill out the reader survey on page 2 and remember to release your sphincter muscles and ride like a psycho hose beast.

While the World champs are very cool, it’s debatable whether having mountain biking in the Olympics is a good thing. Here’s a quote from Steve Gurney from a recent issue of Adventure mag :

“Mountain bike racers are treated like juveniles with the introduction of petty rules and disobedience fines. Regulations and impractical race entry criteria are making mountain bike racing the domain of a select few. Olympic regulations is the defence. Administrators are allowing the bright but short lived flame of Olympic excitement to starve the heart of the sport of life giving oxygen. In short, mountain biking’s lush grass is dying – rapidly. The roots of fun are being killed.”

Very unfrotty vibe, but its true, MTB races should be loose and social, with hot-dogs, beer and bad spot prizes like pink lycra saddle covers and blue dinosaur horns, and there should be bogus course marking so that the fastest person doesn’t always win and chronically unridable bits to freak out roadies. That’s how it used to be, and yes it really was more fun.

Fortunately, Wellington does still have racing with no drug testing, and plenty of them – see upcoming races listing.Reading mags from other countries can be an eye-opener. Out there as it may seem, the Germans all want to be freaks – in fact Giant, with what has to be the marketing slogan of the decade, proudly proclaim “CADEX – BUILT BY FREAKS” (this is true).

Meanwhile, the Australians have given up the pretence of going off road at all, and started doing articles on how to ride your MTB in the city. At least they don’t seem to have ads for spray on mud. And in India, police are tracking a killer described as “a man like beast who drove a white van, looked like a pig and could fly” (this is something I read in the paper).

Remember, if you can’t find any freaks to avoid, just avoid Germans and don’t swallow live bacon .


Fill in this survey and go into the draw to win a genuinely used pair of gloves.

Reader Profile

1. Type? Freak ____ Tripper ____ Fripper ____ Stoner ____ Thrasher ____ Female ____

2. Income Source? Loan ____ Grant ____ Sport & recreation fund ____     Dealings ____ Other (include Jobs) ____

3. Is your house worth ripping off? Car ____ Stereo ____ TV ____ Big TV ____ Video ____ CD’s ____ Microwave ____  Video games ____ Loose cash ____ Drugs ____

4. If you ticked five or more boxes for Q3 please print your address here _________________________________________________________

5. Drug usage? Occasional ____ Frequent ____ Can’t remember ____     Holding ____ Holding surplus to requirement ____

6. Educational status? A bozo ____ Smarter than a bozo ____ A lot smarter than a bozo ____ What’s a bozo? ____

Reader Involvement

7. Which publications do you read regularly? Jogging adventure quarterly ____ Ribald ____ Soldier of Fortune ____ Sid’s Bait Shop Peloton News ____ Buff ____ Torana Fever ____ Weird shit (give details) : ______________________________________________________

8. Where do you keep your copies of CS Newsletter? The toolbox ____ The bed ____ Rectal suppository ____ The shower ____ The freezer ____ With your stash ____ (give exact location details) ___________________________

9. How paranoid are you? Question 8 seems….. Totally innocent ____ A little suspect ____ We want your stash ____ THEY want your stash ____ WE are THEM and everybody wants your stash ____

10. How many hours do you ride per week? Hundreds ____ Thousands ____ Really often ____ Never ____ A lot more than you admit to ____ If you can remember then you weren’t really riding ____

General lifestyle

11. What sports beside mountainbiking do you play ? Rugby ____ Ballet ____ Bus Surfing ____ Watersports ____ Beekeeping ____ Trainspotting ____ Hide the sausage ____ Carparking ____ Hallucinating ____ Posing ____

12. Which nutritional products do you use ? Powerbar ____ Clifbar ____ Mars bar ____ Mushrooms ____ Sushi ____ Absolut Vodka ____ Cafe “Latte” ____ Bananas ____ Dope cake ____ Bongwater ___ Big Mac ____ Guarana ____ Ginseng ____ Stim-o-stam ___ Iso-wind____

13. How many hours per week do you spend baked to the gills ? Less than 1 __ 1 – 3 ___ 3 – 6 ____ 6 – 10 ____ 10 – 15____ 15 plus ____

Blatant Consumerism

14. How many bikes have you got ? Not enough ____ A barely adequate amount ____ Enough to ride a different one every day of the week ____ More than you can count ____

15. How flash is your best bike? A courier bike ____ Suitable for wharf jumping ____ A Ferruno ____ A Proflex with Kooka cranks ____ A Raleigh Arena with “buff” stickers _____ A Softride Allsop with Matrix rims ____ A MR BIG _____ Really flash ____

16. Do you go roadriding? No, legs too hairy ____ No, a roadbike would break ____ Yes, but always wearing a bumbag ____ Yes, but only on a MTB ____ Yes, and looking to buy a Raleigh Arena with “buff” stickers ____

Thank you for your help – we will post out your prize if you win!


Bicycles don’t get pregnant.

You can ride bicycles any time of the month.

Bicycles don’t have parents.

Bicycles don’t whine unless there is something really wrong.

You can share a bicycle with friends.

Bicycles don’t care how many other bicycles you have ridden.

When riding you and your bike arrive at the same time.

Bicycles don’t mind how many other bicycles you have.

Bicycles don’t care if you look at other bicycles.

Bicycles don’t care if you buy bicycle magazines.

If your bicycle goes flat you can fix it.

If your bicycle is too loose you can tighten it.

If your bicycle is misaligned, you don’t have to discuss politics with it.

You can have a black bicycle and take it home to your parents.

You can ride other peoples bicycles and still stay friends.

If you say bad things to your bicycle, you don’t have to apologise before you ride it again.

You can ride your bicycle for as long as you want and it won’t get sore.

You can stop riding your bicycle as soon as you want and it won’t get frustrated.

Your mother won’t keep in touch with your bicycle after you dump it.

Bicycles don’t get headaches.

Your bicycle never wants a night out with other bicycles.

Bicycles don’t insult you if you are a bad rider.

Bicycles don’t care if you are late.

You don’t have to take a shower before riding your bike.

You can ride a bike the first time you meet it, without having to take it out to dinner, see a movie, or meet its mother.

Next issue : 25 reasons why handlebar grips are better than men

and : 101 uses for a dead man’s bike seat.


One of the most confused aspects of mountain biking at the moment, full suspension is something that no-one seems to agree on. Being new, unlike say derailleurs, or wheels, rear suspension has no set standard against which new designs can be judged.

In NZ, the very fact that a bike is available at all will make it popular and reliability hardly comes into the picture, because there are very few suspension bikes older than 2 years around.

Another area of confusion is that people have very little idea of what a suspension bike is used for. A good suspension bike is better for going downhill – not just rough downhills but pretty much all downhills can be ridden faster and safer. The bikes corner, steer and brake with far greater predictability and stay glued to the track.Suspension is also really nice for cruising smoothly around on the flat, and can be handy for getting better traction on technical uphills.

But suspension adds weight and absorbs power with every pedal stroke, and slows down the bikes responsiveness. It also hates mud and requires more maintenance. In other words, suspension is not well suited to hill climbing, cross country racing, bush bashing, commuting, roadriding, winter riding, touring, or for people on a limited budget, or with a dislike of doing or paying for maintenance.

If you ride off road all year round in Wellington and you buy a suspension bike, then you are best to keep your hardtail as well. Despite all that, when it comes down to it, although they are not the most practical bikes for anything other than downhilling, they are so much fun to ride and so frotty and stylee, a lot of people want them. So why haven’t we got a shop full of them?

It’s mainly due to a lack of available, well designed bikes. Here’s a checklist of what we think a well designed suspension bike should have.

Evenly matched suspension travel, 3″ – 5″ front & rear.

Big strong easily serviced pivots, with frame reinforcing at pivot areas.

An oil dampened adjustable coil spring rear shock.

A linkage design with a “Horst ” link.

Fully adjustable seat height.

Quality construction, a full warranty and dealer backup.

There are not many bikes in NZ that have all 6 of these features. But is NZ a backwater for suspension bikes? After going through a recent US buyer guide and counting 88 different brands making suspension frames, it is worth noting that NZ has only 27 brands that even have an importer, and most of those are pretty scarce. Check out the list of brand names – there’s a lot, but many of them look bogus, so we’re not necessarily missing out on all that much. There are still some good suspension bikes available in NZ, but there are also some real lemons, so think carefully about design features before rushing in.


(* Possibly available in NZ.)

3-d Racing, Alpinestars, American Flyer, AMP*, Answer*, Avitar, Azonic*, Balance*, Barracuda*, Battle, BeYond, Bianchi*, Brew, Caloi, Cannondale*, Catamount, Conejo, Crankin’ Cycles, Dagger, De Kerf, Diamondback*, Dogma, Ellsworth, Fat City, Foes Fabrications*, Gary Fisher, Giant*, Griffen, GT*, Haro, High Zoot, Ibis, Iron Horse, J.P. Morgan, Jamis, Karpiel Design, Kestral, KHS*, Klein, Kona*, Lightening Cycle, Litespeed*, Loco Motion, Mako, Marin*, McMahon, Mongoose*, Moots, Morales, Mountain Cycle*, Mountain Goat, Norco, Otis Guy, Outback, Performance, Pro-Flex*, Raleigh USA, Ralph Cycles!, Research Dynamics*, Ritchey*, Rocky Mountain*, Ross, Salsa, Santa Cruz*, Schwinn, Scott*, Slingshot, Softride, Specialized*, SyCip, Ted Wojcik, Ti Cycles, Ti-Cranium, Titan, Titus Titanium, Trek*, Trinku Design, Trophy*, Turner, Univega, Ventana, VooDoo, Yeti*, Zero.


When roadies are not training, they play on the internet, where they are attempting to come up with their own “dictionary of roadie slang”. So far they have 10 pages of it, and haven’t even got “anal” on there yet. But here are some of the better ones:

Ate straw – Lost the line in a tight corner

Bed stick – What happens the morning after a biff.

Bloater – A rider with more muscle than you. See : Fat boy.

Bowling for dollars – A rider who crashes and takes down most of the peloton.

Burger – Crash. ” He really burgered…”

Cannonwhale, Cannonsail, Cannonball, Crimp & fail – Cannondale.

Carpet sprint – What happens when you ride off the rollers.

Carrot choppers – Spinergy wheels.

DFL – Dead fuckin’ last.

EWD – Extreme wiener discomfort. (aka: penile numbness)

Fat boy – A rider with more muscle than you, especially above the waist.

Going like….a donkey / a bag of shit – riding badly.

Gut spray, gopher juice – What gets sprayed on your legs when a truck runs over fresh road pizza.

Laughing group – the guys just trying to finish the race.

Lloyd – A triathlete.

Lost the remote – When your Mavic Zap goes nuts.

Mission – Ride. ” I known where THAT is… that’s a long Fucking mission from here!!!

Pack fodder – What you are when you can’t crack the top 20 in a race.

Pump the big meat – push a big gear.

Road pizza – Road kill, furry frisbees, flattened fauna.

Roadie – Cyclists that like to put their rubber on something hard!!!!

Snot shot – To catch someone’s blow. ” I got snot shot.”

Taste lung – Go way anaerobic. Really hammer.

Trailer – A person in a break who can do little more than hang on the back for dear life.

Triathlete – Three times the athlete!!! (Ed – What’s this doing here, Sam? Wasn’t it supposed to say “geek”)

Ugly – Hurt. ” Its going to be ugly. I’m going to put a hurting on you guys.”

Vulture – To circle at the top of a hill waiting for slower “friends”.

Wheel suck – Someone who sticks to your arse like snot to a fingernail.


Have you ever been for one of those rides where you get home too weak to push your bike up the path, and you stagger into the shower, and sit down cross legged to chill out, while water pounds down on your head in a hypnotic rhythm, and time slows down as you pretend you are lost in a tropical rain forest with warm rain falling all around, and you start to have all these cool ideas, like things you will write in the next newsletter, and inventions like inflatable cycling companions, so that you can quickly find some people to go riding with who you can beat, and then you start to imagine that you are sinking into a warm pool of quicksand and wake up all of a sudden with the realisation that you were blocking the shower plug hole with your arse and the water is overflowing into the bathroom, so you get up and forget every idea you ever had and go back to being a clueless tosser? This is not something I’ve ever experienced myself, and if you have you’re probably a freak, or a tripper, but I imagine that’s the kind of excuse someone might come up with to explain a four month gap between newsletters.


World Champs – Henry took over a cardboard cut out of himself to Cairns and the New Zealand team took turns at standing it next to famous people like John Tomac and Julie Furtado for photographs. They turned out really well, and the only way you can tell they’re not the real Henry is because he looks exactly the same in all of them. The cardboard cut-out turned out to be amazingly versatile and got the 80 or so NZ team members out of a few scrapes by doubling as a second mechanic, enabling Henry to work a casual 16 hours a day, leaving him refreshed after his much needed tropical holiday.

Medals – Meanwhile Sarah Dee won the first ever team CS world champ medal, a bronze in the 30+ downhill event, which is ultra stylee. This month’s competition: “How many photos of Sarah appear in NZ MTBikes issue #2 ?” We will secure for the lucky winner a pair of Sam’s socks with a handy odour permeable carry bag. Hurry and get your entry in before the next CS newsletter comes out.

Gloves – The winner of our last reader survey, lucky Tama Easton of Mud St , Karori has yet to receive his fetid smelly festering used gloves. This is because Bugle is still using them, but as soon as they begin moving by themselves, we will send them up. Be patient Tama.

Survey – Here are the results from our reader survey. The four replies we got allowed us to build up a complex reader profile, enabling us to tailor our products and services to your exact needs. There is no truth to rumours that reader surveys attract glove sniffing, panty stealing certifiable fruitloops with nothing better to do than respond to inane reader surveys.

Our Findings – (margin of error +/- 1.62%) As a typical customer:

– You are a freak tripper who frequently can’t remember what a bozo is, let alone how much drugs you use, but estimate that you are “twisted” or “baked to the gills” for more than 15 hours per week.

– You are totally paranoid and refuse to reveal where you live or how often you ride, but do admit to bizarre sexual habits in the Karori toilets and unspecified “weird shit”. – You enjoy bananas, are too wasted to count your own bikes and describe yourself as “dirty and bad!”

Best Unsolicited Comment – “I am dirty and bad, give me gloves now, Now! NOW!!- None of you admit to reading Ribald magazine, playing rugby, using Isowind or remembering anything.

– You are a certifiable fruitloop with nothing better to do than spend your time filling out inane reader surveys!

Tama the nose picker. Who would have believed that this well known stalwart of Mud Cycles was a public exhibitionist. This would have been quite a nice photo if he wasn’t looking so liz and sifty. No wonder his gloves are smelly.


Roadie Riding – the Wellington road revival seems to be in full swing – we have never had such a high level of interest in road equipment, or so much road riding going down. As well as rides at 6.00pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays, Time trials on Wednesday nights and large bunch rides on Saturday mornings, there is Round-Taupo on Sat, November 30th, and the new Wellington Round-The-Bays 80km on Sun, December 15th.

Hot Selling Roadie Goods – we have been selling a lot of ‘96 Campagnolo Chorus Ergopower groupsets, ’97 Dura-ace 9 speed STI groupsets, Bianchi frames, Campag. Atlanta aero rims, ITM bars and stems, Look pedals, Michelin folding tyres, Campag. 12 spoke Shamal wheels, Cinelli Spinacci clip-ons and an endless stream of wheel rebuilds using DT spokes. We are able to get in a vast range of road bits, So let us know if you want something frotty.

Pro Team Equipment – what do the worlds best road riders use? Here’s what the top 10 road teams used this year:






































Campag. Record

Campag Record

Campag Record

Dura- Ace

Campag. Record

Dura- Ace

Dura- Ace












Stem & Bars






















Btle Cage
























San- Marco


Selle- Italia

San- Marco

San – Marco

Selle- Italia

Selle- Italia







STUD E : COMPUTES – ARE THE DOWNHILL OF MANNY modern magazenes – they destruct the hole character and feel and are best and avoided especially and programes “like” and desktop, publican “and” spillchuck wich and really bad.





Sometimes there is an advantage to being a silly old fart, like being selected to represent Kiwiland in the World championship downhill as a veteran (30 plus).Hooray! So, with my cane, arthritis pills & one mean attitude, me and Team Cycle Services set off to do our damnedest to kick some serious butt!

My new Keewee frame awaited me on arrival, 6 inches of pluuusssh travel, unfortunately my team mechanic, who shall remain nameless (Henry – whoops, slipped out) found my secret stash of Vodka & was in state of semi-delirium until the day he left, so I had to build up my Keewee myself.

Psyche out 1. The course – holy shit, we couldn’t even walk it without falling over. There were goats stuck on the switchbacks & even the snakes were having trouble negotiating the wooden ramps. Fortunately, my home town of Eastbourne gives birth to tracks like these, so I was at home straightaway!

Psyche out 2. Incredibly muscular, fit, strong looking women on some of the fastest looking machinery I’ve seen, this stuff wasn’t even in the magazines yet! Everyone had triple clamp suspension (except Australia & NZ) as most were team riders!

Psyche out 3. Watching all my heroes getting air that I can only fantasise about, luckily the Open Men and Juniors were practising at different times to us old Vets and Women, so I wasn’t getting yelled at too often to “Get out of the **Y Ö x ! ! ! ? way!”

Well, practice was going great, until 3 days before embarrassment day I noticed a big crowd at the jump, so spurred by visions of stardom I pulled some big mofo air. Only to land slightly horizontally disadvantaged – Result? Ouch!!! Both wheels taco’d & a very sore knee. The next three days saw me lying by the pool with a knee the size of Henry’s hangover, with needles being jabbed into it twice a day by the physio of Pain.

Race Day loomed, pouring with rain – major panic – it doesn’t rain here!!!! No mud tyres, no BMX pedals, no crudcatcher, no goggle tear offs. What the hell, let’s get up there & do the business, a quick local anaesthetic in my knee so I can’t feel the pain – “It’ll last one hour”, says Doctor Death, but alas it was so muddy the 4WD Toyotas couldn’t get up the hill, so the downhillers became human horsepower pushing & shoving until we got to the start 2 hours late!!!

My run – some bastard told me there was chicken wire on the ramps. Alas, he lied. CRASH, with a buckled rear wheel. I climbed back on and attacked, but alas (again) the mud was so gluggy that my rig couldn’t get up the minor hills & left me dismounting & clearing brake arches & chainstays of GUCK! Man, stress me out, this isn’t meant to happen, I couldn’t  even get my cleats to engage! I hammered, clawed, grovelled my way over tree roots the size of Jonah’s legs to the finishing stretch where I rode hard & pretended I was really fast for the crowd, pulling in a 21st place which sounds good until you saw my timed run displayed for the world to see, over 3 minutes off the pace – oh, well, blame my mechanic – I did!

Lesson learnt – be prepared – if you’re going to race in Iceland, take sand tyres! Wait till I get to race Masters! Hah. See ya! – Mad Dog

97 Pro Contracts-1 copy.JPG (253218 bytes)

APRIL 1997

Eating without food.

When we first started selling Power Bars eight years ago they were considered the most space age freak health food available. We ate them with our fish and chips instead of having a Moro bar.

Over the years we have gradually been exposed to more and more nutritional products, and all of a sudden found that we have this vast range of supplements, stimulants, pills, powders, sachets of goop, and chewy bars in spacesuits.

While we are still learning the basics, we have stuck with the familiar stuff like Clif Bars, Leppin, and Gatorade, as far as what’s out on display, but this is just the tip of the iceberg – we are now able to get in products from Twinlab, Nutra-Life, Kordel, Wagner, Balance, Nutra-Sport, Joe Weider, Herbs of Gold, Vitaplex, Leppin, Powerbar, Clif Bar, Exceed, Keywin, and more.

Some like Twinlab have ranges that include hundreds of different supplements. Most cyclists are reasonably used to the idea of taking concentrated and fast acting food, like Leppin squeezies or the new Power gels, because its a lot easier than stopping half way through the race to eat a loaf of bread or some creamed rice.

But the rest of the stuff gets confusing. Firstly, there’s a whole lot of people who say “all you need is a balanced diet”, and rubbish the idea of eating any kind of supplements, and there are a lot of others who swear that all you need is something along the lines of “bee-pollen and ginseng with creatine and Mexican yam extract.

As a quick summary, eat actual food and water, have adequate protein for your weight, (at least 1.4g for every kg of body weight, per day), keep sugar intake as low as possible, and eat some fruit and vegetables. But this is only the tip of the iceberg, and cycling canes the crap out of your body, so chances are you need a whole pile of things topping up.

If you want to learn about nutrition, we recommend reading “Optimum Sports Nutrition” by Dr Michael Colgan, a book that covers all the basics, as well as some more advanced stuff.

Here’s some things that we have been getting good feedback and results with over the past three months:

#1. Power Gel – energy booster, take in the later stages of a ride or race.

#2. Guarana – stimulant, similar to caffeine, but more effective.

#3. Twinlab Hydrafuel – best fluid replacement drink available.

#4. Clif Bars – food, easy to eat, tasty and spaceman friendly.

#5. Twinlab Dualtabs – Sustained release multi vitamin and minerals.

#6. Twinlab Chromic Fuel – helps to increase muscle and reduce fat.

#7. Leppin Recovery Formula – helps increase energy levels after ride.

#8. Twinlab Creatine Fuel – can enable harder workouts, leading to more muscle growth.

#9. Leppin squeezy, and new Blaster squeezy, (like Leppin, but more kick)-energy boost.

#10.Nutra-Life Egg White Albumen – high quality protein source.

TECH TIPS — Five all-time suspension fork classics.

It’s not like there’s hundreds to chose from, in fact with the benefit of hindsight, most of the forks that have been sold, were prototype lemons. Here’s a few of the rare exceptions:

Manitou 1. (1991, 92). When they first came out, they weren’t called #1’s, because they were it, the only alternative to original Rockshox, (ugly dogs that blew up if you looked at them), and they were cool, big grunty aluminium things that looked like they cost $900, which they did, and punters would GO OFF over them, lusting and frotting because there was hardly any cool stuff back then, and Manitous were the business. Technically they lived up to expectation, despite only having a pathetic 40mm of travel, because they were over engineered, and fantastically well made, able to cope with years of abuse, needing nothing other than elastomers and seals replacing. None of the other Manitous (2, 3, 4, Sport, Magnum, or EFC), ever lived up to the promise of the first ones, until the 96 Mach 5 SX finally truly superseded them.

Rockshox Mag 21. ( 1994, 95, 96, 97). While the originals were flexy, seal blowing, oil leaking, pink-decalled lemons, the later ones are low maintenance, water proof, light, reliable, and amazingly high performance. They don’t give a plush ride, but for sheer pace as a cross-country race fork, they are bollocks free and hard to beat. Also, they are the most tuneable fork available. Maybe that’s why Rockshox keep pumping them out year after year.

Rockshox Judy DH. (1996). Out of all the Judy’s these ones are the best. The key is the two dampeners, one rebound, and one compression, combined with 80mm travel. The original cartridges all needed to be replaced, but this is covered under warranty, and compared to the 97 ones, the 96 forks had three piece legs, a lighter crown, and better seals. Still, they only make 97 ones now, which are very similar, and yes, they do warranty the seals, and the one piece legs if you break the brake bridge. The best fork for full suspension rigs up to 3 1/2″ travel, and also one of the best all round hard-tail fun and cross-country fork for anyone over around 75kg. Eat SL Judy’s for breakfast.

Rockshox Indy XC. (1997). Why would these cheap ($450) forks be in a top five list? Surprisingly enough they work really well- and we haven’t had any problems with them yet. Performance for $ they are the best value ever made. Not really for heavy, DH, or hardcore riders, but they do cope OK, and three years ago they would have been the best fork at any price. Everyone who tries them is impressed, even if they wouldn’t be seen dead with something that cheap on their “rig”. They even do a long travel version, and that works well too.

Manitou FS. (1997). There’s a lot of confusion about Manitous this year. Basically, there are six models, and they are a bit too similar, but they are all relatively good. If we were choosing one, it would be the FS, (white, 76mm travel, two way oil damped, oversized bulge legs). The FS stands for full suspension, but 76mm is perfect for hard-tails, and why get 70mm when you can have more? There is a Ti version (red) if you have $ to burn, but the performance is the same. If you want the plushest, smoothest, and stiffest XC fork, this is the one. All the warranty problems that the original Mach 5s had last year have now been rectified, so if they keep these ones on the market for a while, the buying public may catch on to how good they are. A new colour (how about bright blue) and a new name, (FROT), and these forks could be huge!

New NZMBA rulings for the 1998 season.

#1 . All riders must purchase and wear while racing, the NZMBA official riding uniform. This must be ordered and paid for six months in advance.($485). In the event of a rider losing or misplacing his or her uniform, they will be required to hire one on the day, at a cost of $100 per item, per day.

#2. To be eligible to enter any race in the national series, a rider must enter, and pay for, all the races in the series, and this entry fee must be paid in full, a minimum of six months in advance. The total amount payable is $2000. ($100 per race for six race series, plus additional $1400 surcharge to cover prize money for officials – see subsequent ruling).

#3. All additional prize money will be allocated to officials, based on the new national officials ranking, decided by best four rulings by each official, with amount of paper work generated to be the deciding factor in the event of a tie.

#4. In order to be eligible to join the NZMBA, a rider must be a member of a NZMBA affiliated club, AND must also be sponsored by a NZMBA affiliated shop, AND must pay any and all affiliation fees to become affiliated to all NZMBA affiliates and their official sponsors and/or immediate families.

#5. All riders must race on the official sponsors product. (JEEP). As the sponsor is a car manufacturer, all riders must ride the official brand of car, (JEEP). As there are no models of Jeep which satisfy UCI requirements, all riders must tow their Jeep with a NZMBA and Jeep affiliated bicycle, and must display Jeep insignia on their forehead.

#6. In order to be eligible to vote at the AGM, members must be a fully paid up member for the past five years, pay a special voting fee, ($1000), and be related by blood to a standing official. The standing officials reserve the right to override any votes by non officials.

#7. From 1/1/ 98 there will be a total ban on non-NZMBA riders from riding anywhere. Funding to be allocated to a new sub-committee for studying the possibility of culling non-NZMBA riders found riding in forests.

#8. To reduce costs, all downhill competitors must supply their own uphill Jeep to tow their downhill Jeep to the top of the hill, and must also supply their own Red-Cross team, with a Jeep ambulance and a Jeep stretcher.

#9. All downhill competitors must pay a levy, ($1000), for a new computer system that will allocate times by random lottery.

#10. To reduce costs, all six races will be run in Auckland, on the same Tuesday morning, with the XC and DH events using the same track, at the same time, and the track will be a rugby field.

Cinelli Spinachi Instructions.

* Italians really know how to write instructions – check out these dodgy instructions for fitting Cinelli Spinachi clip on bars :

1. Pull grade by grade the three brugles until they meet the blocking couples

2. Choose the position most congenial for you before proceeding with the definitive screwing

3. Permit a phase of relaxation

Ever heard of sachet rash?

We hadn’t, and when we asked an American tourist about it recently, he said “You have to be well hung to get ‘sachet rash’, man”. Sounds marginal, dude…


*** The new techno era in Cycle Services newsletters. ***

Things were getting sort of slow and sifty in the newsletter production department, (we’ve only done two this year – a full sift record) but now we have become techno heads, (technologists, not ravers), and we have THE GOODS….

No longer restrained by the inadequacies of a gutless old computer, we can now do stuff like scanning, graphics, and printing. We also have an E-mail address:   After checking out the fully deviant Mud Cycles web site, we are also looking at getting out there in cybergeek land in the near future.

This means that we can now do newsletters at pace,  and incorporate almost any material you freaks can supply – photos, drawings, cartoons, text, and virtually anything else that’s A4 size and almost flat. So give us your ravings and naked tripper pictures, and we will probably butcher them up into some unrecognisable new configuration and credit it to your name to avoid any embarrassment.In keeping with our new, urban sifter about town approach to newsletter writing, this month we have included an article first published in NZ Adventure magazine on getting really baked and riding aimlessly about, as well as a bike shop bike spec from NZ MTB magazine, and a letter from some gormless anus who hates getting really baked and riding aimlessly about. The drawings are a best of from this week’s desk blotter pad.Team CS have been getting a bit unfit since the impressive display of dominance at the Mud DH series, but there have been notable exceptions – at the recent Cannon Point eliminator, (where all our other riders were eliminated in the first or second round), Mike McGovern went on to win the senior grade overall. But everyone else may have to start doing secret training – those young grommets are looking fast!The latest marketing concept is “FREERIDING“, which is pretty much what we’ve been doing for years, but now companies like Cannondale are selling freerider bikes, aimed at disillusioned paranoid speed freaks who dress in baggy black clothing, and ride downhill on drugs. Where do they come up with these ideas?

In the new bike stuff area, we are awaiting the imminent arrival of frotty new 98 things. Until we run out of leftovers we will continue having our sale, but we are rapidly running out of things that we will pay you to take away. The main area of development for 98 is longer and cheaper suspension – for example, 98 Diamondbacks will have 4.5″ of travel, from $1995. Triple clamp forks will also be more affordable and available – with new models from White Bros., Manitou, Rockshox, and many others, starting at around $1000. The coolest new DH rig we have seen is the Rotech – finally a bike with up to date motorcross technology, using the same bearings for both bottom bracket and swingarm

A drawing of a sales rep from the CS office deskpad:

A downhill life.(NZ Adventure Magazine)

While mountain biking has become a mainstream activity, with everyone and their grandmother at least owning a MTB, if not actually riding it, there is always a new competitive frontier, and for many experienced riders, it’s downhilling.

To a lot of cross country riders, who go straining up mega 30 min hill climbs checking their HR monitors and pushing their aerobic threshold to the limit, downhillers are a bunch of unfit slobs who push their bikes uphill, or worse, drive! to the top, and coast back down the hill doing skids. If only it was that easy!

On race day, when the spectators gather down the edges of an off-camber corner, waiting eagerly to see gladiator like competitors sliding sideways down the hill at 50 kph, and hopefully crashing at their feet, they too get a fairly one-sided view of downhilling, seeing only 5 seconds of a 5 minute run that took 50 hours to arrive at.

To be a top level downhiller is a serious business, but that’s not to say that most downhillers are top level. In fact, within downhilling, there’s several quite distinct approaches, each with their own philosophies about the sport. At the top level of skill, equipment and fitness are “nationals-heads”. These guys train really hard, and have the fitness of expert cross country riders, combined with a lot more strength from weight training. If they get the chance, they will do up to 30 practice runs down the course, in the weeks before the race. These guys are the committed elite, the epitome of pro downhilling, and I’m certainly not going to go on about them, because they make the rest of us look like slobs who coast downhill doing skids.

Lurking about at a more primal level than the glossy professional work ethic of the nationals-heads, is another more unique sub-culture, that of the “locals”, and although different areas have some markedly differing sub-cultures, they all seem to have certain things in common. While nationals-heads train, the locals just ride, and while nationals-heads want to travel about and gather to beat other nationals-heads in timed runs, locals want to outdo each other in terms of style moves, like pulling off a dangerous passing manoeuvre while simultaneously getting air sideways over a log, preferably on a new, and possibly illegal, track, while baked to the gills on prime hooter. Yes, like surfers, the locals do not say no to drugs, and maybe that’s one of the reasons why the downhill scene has a lot more flavour than the comparatively tame XC scene.

At a basic level, downhilling is not about times, it’s about sensations, namely that of being at the furthest edge of control, the point at which you still don’t know, half way round the corner, whether you are going to get round it or not. It involves thrashing, shralving and sometimes munting yourself into a bank. You are not going fast until you are out of control, you are not out of control until you crash, and you haven’t crashed unless someone saw you.

The equipment used for downhilling has come a long way since the early days. Eight years ago, we used to race each other down some of the same tracks we ride now, but we did it on fully rigid bikes, with no helmets and no protective gear, and although we were certainly out of control, by today’s standards we weren’t that fast. Five years ago, we had front suspension with 1 1/2″ travel, and we were wearing helmets, but it’s only over the past three years that we have started getting real DH rigs. Once you start using full suspension, everything gets into a new speed dimension, and what seemed wildly out of control before, seems hovercraft smooth and somehow slightly removed from reality. You build up confidence and start to go faster, only to be rudely awakened by a high speed crash. It really hurts, so you get more body armour, a full face helmet, pads for everywhere. And you need more traction, and more brakes, so you are always on the hunt for fatter tyres and gruntier brakes. You start to wonder if 3″ travel is enough, and that $5500 6″ travel frame and fork looks tempting. Ultimately, you have a bike worth more than the latest motorcross bike, and you’re wearing more protective gear than a motorcross racer. The locals start to look at you funny. Maybe you have turned into a nationals-head. It’s time to start riding in your T-shirt again.

The key attitude adjustment required for downhilling is to set up your bike, your gear and your mind, for the primary purpose of going downhill. This is known as being “strictly downhill”. You still have to get up the hill, but speed is unimportant, getting to the top is just a necessary evil, especially as 35lb suspension bikes climb like pigs.

A few downhill basics: for your bike, buy the best suspension and brakes you can afford, get wide downhill handlebars for extra control, run a 2.2″ DH front tyre and drop your seat around 4″ from it’s XC position. For gear, wear a minimum of helmet, full finger gloves, glasses, and a riding jersey and shorts, and for high speed stuff, add knee and elbow pads and preferably more, such as shoulder and hip protectors and a full face helmet. For your mind, remember to focus where you want to go, as if you are a laser guided missile, and if you have to try, try to be smooth, or stylish, or loose, or just about anything other than fast. Never try to be fast, it’s not zen and it will just make you get tense and crash.

So where are you going to ride? The best downhilling area for compactness, convenience and variety is Wellington, where there are hundreds of great downhills, all close together. The Wellington scene is big, probably the only place where there are bigger fields at minor local races than there are at nationals races, but even so, unless you have a contact, probably nobody is going to tell you how to find the really good single tracks. It’s not like going to Rotorua (NZ’s biggest BMX track, but definitely not DH!), where they have maps and signs. What you need is an inside contact, and in order to infiltrate the scene, you need to talk to the locals. Here’s how : cruise up to a bunch of riders, when they are sifting about in a secluded clearing in the forest indulging in suspicious and furtive drug abusing type of behaviour, and say something like “Wicked, liz, is that it with you, bro? Check it out, are you holding? I’ve got some wicked hooter, how about showing me down a fully marginal hell track and getting some air over a big shralving death vert into a frotty bit of new singletrack?” Who knows what may happen…

If this approach doesn’t work out, you could always try reading the Kennett Bros. MTB book, which although more oriented towards expeditions rather than DH’s, does point out a lot of areas that have a good downhill or two. Wherever there’s a 500m+ hill, there’s usually a downhill, but it certainly makes life easier if there’s a road up it. Unless, of course, you have the wedge to hire a helicopter. And what is the ultimate downhill? Mt Fyffe, behind Kaikoura is generally considered to be the mecca, a 1600m vertical height, 15-20 mins of really hardcore open track, an ear popping, genuinely dangerous rush. Only problem is the 3 1/2 hours it takes to push your bike up it. But often the best downhills are not standing out like dog’s bollocks, they require a lot of careful searching, and a bit of subtle refining. Be prepared to explore, sometimes even downhillers have to ride about a bit.

Remember; what goes down, must come up.


Dear Sir,

It was with great alarm that I read your article in the latest issue of Adventure magazine. In my mind there is no place in our great outdoors for such mechanized monsters as Mountain Bikes, let alone such deplorable things as illegal drugs!

I read the magazine to see what things our country has to offer, not to see what things the youth of this country are destroying their minds with. The whole idea of riding a push-bike down a hill covered in silly looking clothing and motor-cycling body armour is, I think, worthy of ridicule.

As for the speeds you say that you attain, I can hardly believe it. If you do attain such dangerous speeds, then shame on you for endangering the lives of some innocent young family! You can hardly be a family man!

The reference to “smoking hooter” is deplorable in the extreme as young adults whose minds are easily swayed will be influenced by such talk. No wonder youth suicide is rising at such an alarming rate!

The Labour Government is to blame for all of this silly liberal talk which is spreading around New Zealand. The youth of this country such as yourselves should be enlisted into the Army as they were in my day, this would help you onto the right path and straighten out your ideas and get real jobs. There was no such thing as the Unemployment Benefit or Solo Mothers in my youth – the guilty ones would be made to get married!

I shall be forwarding copies of my letter and your so-called article to both the Editor of Adventure and to the NZ Police. Let them do what is right.


Mr A Nally


Name – Wheels

Nick Name – Ian

Title – Co-Owner

Shop – Cycle Services, Wellington

Riding habits – Frotting About On Downhills

Height – 6′ 3″

Weight – 13 stone

Age – 29 yrs

What I Ride – Marin Team FRS

Frame – 19″ FRS Alloy with Noleen shock

Fork – ’97 Judy DH

Derailleurs – XT

Shifters – XT Rapid Fire Plus

Cranks – Race Face with 24/36/46 Race Face Rings

Bottom Bracket – XT

Cogs – XT 8 sp 11-28

Chain – Sedis M90

Pedals – 737 Shimano SPD

Brakes – XT V-Brakes

Brake Levers – XT

Hubs – White Industries Tracker/XT 8 speed

Rims – Ambrosio CC24 (Best rims in the World!)

Tyres – Panaracer Magic DH

Tubes – Ritchey S.V.

Bars – Club Roost Go Fast DH

Stem – Kore A-Head

Headset – F.S.A.

Barends – Are fully C.U.!!

Grips – Titus Leather

Saddle – SDG 7000 Titanium

Seatpost – Marin Lite (It hasn’t bent yet!)

Computer – Vetta C-500

Weight – 30lb-ish (including tools)

Other Bits – Bullet Bros Chaim retention device

Comments – Super Plush Commuter Rig, eats Healing 10-speeds for breakfast. Rocker Suspension Frames Go Off!


Suspension bike crash syndrom: This has happened so many times now that it’s becoming a recognisable development phase. It goes like this:

Stage 1. The punter starts frotting out over full suspension bikes, and comes to the conclusion that they not only must have one, but also that once they have one, it will make them unbelievably fast.

Stage 2. They buy their dream bike, and head to somewhere steep and treacherous, that they would previously have been intimidated by, and go down it really fast until they crash.

Stage 3 is slow and boring, as it involves watching bad daytime TV and not doing any riding for three to four weeks. This is when disillusionment and thoughts of becoming a cross-country rider set in.

Stage 4 is when they start riding the suspension bike like an actual bicycle rather than a futuristic laser guided hovercraft. Failure to reach stage 4 leads to the endless repetition of stages 2 and 3.

Best Exponent of Suspension Bike Crash Syndrome. With out a doubt, Fraser wins this award, mainly for the shear speed at which he progressed through all the stages. As soon as we had finished assembling his $8000 Intense Uzzi with White Bros. D110’s, he went straight out and tried to fly down a flight of over 100 stairs, leading to considerable damage.

Even more impressive, he got into a magazine for doing so. (See photos!). To ensure his status as legend, he waited for three weeks until the replacement parts arrived from America, then went straight out and tried to ride through a 1.5m deep ditch at 70kph. Now that the cast is finally off, we are awaiting further developments.

Are Cycle Couriers all MAD? Do cycle couriers need to start taking some different drugs? I like to hoon about a bit myself, and anyone who can ride a bike with any degree of speed and expertise in Wellington is obviously going to be breaking their share of bogus traffic rules. But there’s a big difference between cruising through a bunch of peds at walking pace, and nailing through them at 40k. After following a courier who was not only fully nailing every red light at 40k, but also simultaneously riding no hands while sorting the contents of his bag, I had to conclude that all those trippers who keep complaining about cycle couriers may have a point. As the feds already have little else better to do than harass cyclists about bullshit, the last thing we need are more crackdowns. Be more discrete, and remember – the whole point of being baked to the gills is to mellow out! I certainly hope you are all baked to the gills, because if you ride like that straight, you have some serious problems you need to work out with yourselves.

(and yes, this is coming from a convicted “reckless bicycle rider”!) Bunch of ARSE.


Here at long last is the first ever CYBERFROT newsletter. The website version has a full colour sifty and marginally deviant action hip to the scene eXtra beef style, while the paper based one contains everything that will copy OK, and is obtainable from the usual outlet.


DOWNHILL. Our new massively pro looking  CYCLE SERVICES DOWNHILL TEAM is now fully kitted out and racing the winter downhill races. The team consists of Rod Bardsley, Mike Williamson, Aaron Lucy, Jimmy Mitchell, and Jake Bradley. Co-sponsors so far are IRC Tyres, and Havana Coffee. (we are always looking for more good sponsors!) Apart from looking frotty in purple Fox outfits adorned with the new “Flaming” CS logo, the team has already been kicking arse; At the Moonshine DH Race 5/7/98, Rod placed 1st=, Aaron placed 2nd, Mike 3rd, Jimmy 4th, and Jake was 12th. At the Mud Cycles Rolliminator 19/7/98, Rod was 2nd, and Mike and Aaron were 3rd equal. (Rob Metz from Hamilton won, but it was close). The team will be racing at local and national races over the upcoming season so watch out for the fast purple dudes. We want to have a really strong DH Team by summer, so as the rest of the crew get up to speed, there will no doubt be some new additions to the team.

CROSS COUNTRY. Serious contenders for the 98/99 season include Rex Humpherson (who is also Wellington Centre Road Champion), and Myra Moller. Rex is racing in the Elite Men XC. Myra has been winning loads of races in the Junior Women’s grade. The rest of the crew had just better get training, because we’re not sponsoring any XC riders with beer guts – only downhillers are allowed those!

ROAD. We still have a big posse of Roadies, and a hot new jersey is in the pipeline. Brent Backhouse, Paul Waite, John Callaghan, Rex, Henry, and Oli are all working on winter leg definition, while Bill Ayres, Gill Grey, Jay Neill, and Aaron Stagg are over in France checking out the Tour and getting a real tan. We are also co-sponsors for the superfit new Wellington Xerox Team.


While doing the 98 Shimano Technicians Course we got a look at what’s new for 99. Nine speed clusters will bring LX, XT, and XTR up to 27 speed(!).The gear range is huge, but the narrower chain and teeth will probably wear faster in muddy conditions. The XT groupset looks very different, and has a new V-Brake design. XTR will continue to offer both the old std rear derailleur, and the new (and critically derided) “reverse pull deraileur”. One of the coolest things to come out is the carbon brake booster – if you see one you will want two. STX is gone, but there will still be 24 speed STX-RC. There is a new Dura Ace road SPD, and it looks like the best road pedal yet, but does require yet another shoe plate configuration. The lower end groupsets look a bit sleeker, but overall it’s not a ground breaking year. One exception is the new Nexus automatic 4-speed transmission. This trippy looking thing needs a pass code punching in, or the wheel won’t turn, and has an electronic gear changer. Could be good for urban riding.  The course was well done and we learned some handy new tricks, including a couple that used a hammer, so we were happy.

Stylee new CS clothing.

As well as the hideously expensive purple downhill outfits ($380), we have a new line of affordable and frotty new CS logo imprinted clothes, that we will be slowly and grudgingly releasing to the general public. First up are T-shirts, with the new hardcore flaming logo in yellow/red or green/white. These are $25 each, and the shirts themselves are in “Bogan Black” or “Old Fairlaine Blue”. In the pipeline are pro looking road/xc jerseys in purple with black and white, and new riding shorts. Long sleeve T-shirts are also planned.

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The New Team Jersey.

OK, here it is – the new road/xc jersey unveiled.

It will look something like this.

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The world’s sexiest cyclists

According to US Bikesite, these are the world’s sexiest cyclists.

Are these people mad? What about Rod???


23% Miguel Indurain
22% Lance Armstrong
11% John Tomac
10% Shawn Palmer
6% Graham Obree
6% Zapata Espinoza
6% Gary Fisher
5% Greg LeMond
5% Tinker Juarez
4% Hanz Rey
2% Greg Herbold


30% Paola Pezzo
17% Leigh Donovan
16% Missy Giove
11% Ms. “Crackwax”
7% Marla Streb
5% Susan DeMatti
5% Mercedes Gonzalez
4% Juliana Furtado
2% Sara Ballantyne
1% Jacquie Phelan
1% Ruthie Matthes

Makara Peak Gets Cranking ( From the NZ MTB Web)

Development of the proposed mountain bike park at Makara Peak, Wellington, is changing up a gear. Wellington City Council have approved a $120,000 budget for the park and appointed the Kennett Bros as project managers to facilitate it’s development.

While Wellington has many good mountain biking areas, none of the tracks are purpose built for riding. The nearest mountain bike park is a five hour drive away at Rotorua. The Makara Peak park will feature berms, jumps and whoopdy-doos (some of the features that have made the Rotorua area so popular) as well as awesome views and long descents.

At the moment Makara Peak has a few service roads but no single tracks. Hopefully, volunteer work parties will be able to make short work of clearing the first four or five tracks in time for an opening ceremony at the 1999 ‘RockShox Wellington MTB Festival’ next March. In the longer term (3-5 years) a 50 kilometre network of tracks is planned for Makara Peak.

The city council expect the new park will reduce the pressure of recreational use in areas such as Mt Victoria and the Roller Coaster, but have stated that they do not plan to close any of the currently popular dual-use areas.

The park will cover 125 hectares of regenerating farmland southwest of Karori. The council have upgraded the fences and almost 500 goats have been shot in the area. A possum control operation will begin shortly and a fire prevention plan is in the pipeline. It is expected that eventually most of the tracks will be sheltered by a canopy of native forest.

Makara Peak is a significant part of Wellington’s proposed ‘Outer Green Belt’ – a huge stretch of hills from the south coast all the way to Porirua and Belmont Regional Park (including Hawkins Hill, Wrights Hill, Johnsons Hill, and Mt Kaukau). Within a year you’ll be able to ride from Red Rocks to Karori Park on a mixture of 4WD tracks, purpose built mountain bike tracks and a few hundred metres of sealed road.

Several dozen mountain bike riders have already put their names forward to help with track building and tree planting; in July riders planted 750 native plants alongside one section of track.

Track building bees will start on Saturday 15th August – meeting 10am at the Allington Road play area in Karori. We’ll be clearing the ridge track down from the summit. If you can’t make it till the afternoon, no worries – just follow the orange race arrows up from the play area (a one kilometre walk or ride).

Regular working bees at Makara Peak will be held on the first and last Sunday of every month. They will typically last for three to four hours. All tools will be provided by the city council.

Contact the Kennett Bros for more information.

Also, Mud Cycles is holding working bees the second Sunday in each month; and J’ville Cycles is holding track work parties on the third Saturday of each month.

“The best way to predict the future, is to invent it.”

Mt Victoria Freak.

There’s a lot of trees down on Mt Vic at the moment, but that’s not the only reason for all of the logs on tracks – there’s a tosser who gets off on putting logs and rocks on the track just after blind corners. You may see him up there, he does it quite a bit. He is a middle age guy, about 5’10” tall, dark but receding and greying curly hair. He may hassle you about riding too fast. If you confront him about the booby traps he will deny it, but as soon as he gets out of sight, he takes off rapidly. If you catch this bozo sifting up there, be sure to let him know what you think!


The secret is uncovered at last – this is how Rico goes so fast downhill!  Yes it’s true, New Zealand’s #3 ranked downhiller has testicle implants.

These simultaneously lower his center of gravity, enabling him to corner faster, while also totally eliminating the “fear” factor that limits the speeds attainable by less well enhanced downhillers.

Is this an unfair advantage? Well it’s not illegal yet, so we predict testicle implants will be the hot performance modification for next season. You saw it here first! (and probably not for much longer if Rico finds out…..)

The Tour de Drugs.

This years Tour de France may end up being something of a landmark for exposing the true depth of drug taking in professional sport. It’s not like there haven’t been pro cyclists shooting up vast quantities of high performance drugs for the past 20 years. The big difference is that now a large number of them have been caught out, instead of the usual hypercritical “punish the drugtaker” response, now some cycling officials are saying “OK, we have had no success banning drug use, lets just make it all legal”.

Although the governing bodies of other sporting codes are freaking out about this rampant admission of widespread drugtaking, if somewhere between 80 and 100% of pro riders are pharmaceutically enhanced, what else can be done?There is more involved here than riders trying to get ahead by cheating, although that is how it started out. For the modern professional, there has probably never been a realistic option of a drug free career. The demands of a sport like cycling are so high that even the most talented amateur would be struggling to turn pro without some assistance from drugs, and to get to the top requires both a huge drugs budget, and the full time assistance of a team “doctor”.

There is a vicious circle, in that sponsors are only willing to front up with $10 million a year if the team wins races, and the races are so demanding that no one would stand a chance of winning unless they were well juiced up. But when a team gets done for drugs it’s a big scandal and the sponsor pulls the plug. The big myth about drug taking in sport is the belief that there are drug tests that detect the drugs being used, and that drug takers are sooner or later caught.

Most of the true high performance drugs being used are not detected by the current tests, so the only way anyone gets caught is if the happen to be snapped doing something like driving around with 400 vials of EPO and a case of syringes. Even Festina, essentially the French national team, were unable to get away with that. (“It was all for the masseurs personal use”!)

The way in which this years scandal grew so large, is because after the Festina team’s masseur was caught with a car load of drugs, the police raided their headquarters, and found books detailing the dosage programs for all the team riders. They also found that Festina was supplying drugs to other teams. After the Festina riders were arrested, and had admitted to widespread usage, the French police then took a heavy handed approach, searching and arresting more cyclists, which lead to the protests that halted the tour.

Public sympathy now lies with the cyclists, who are seen as victims of a system that has now turned on them, as soon as they are no longer seen as a viable commercial spectacle.Both the public and officials seem to be stuck in a mid-70’s Eastern Block steroid mindset when it comes to drugs. Once in a while someone gets done for steroids, and the misconceptions of detectability are kept alive. At top levels, when steroids are used, the well funded professional has biochemically altered ones that the computerised urine tests are unable to detect.

In the case of athletics sprinter Ben Johnson, he was probably caught not so much because he was the only one using steroids, but because he was the only one getting ripped off by his dealer – he was on cheap horse steroids. While steroids are still popular, especially amongst strength based athletes, they are not the modern drug of choice for endurance athletes.In cycling, drug number one is EPO (erythropoitin). This is a drug first developed for kidney patients, that increases the rate of red blood cells production, an effect similar to living at very high altitudes. It enables the user to carry a greater amount of oxygen in the blood, and its use cannot be reliably detected at present. It does have the unfortunate side effect of thickening up the blood and causing heart attacks, but other drugs can reduce the likelihood of this.

Other popular drugs include HGH (human growth hormone), GHB (Gamma Hydroxybutyric acid), and Clenbuterol, with some exciting new cutting edge stuff on it’s way.

What effect will this years scandal have? – a few predictions. It’s going to make sponsors for the big pro teams extremely hard to find for next season, and is likely to lead to a recession in European pro racing for a few years. There will be a big crack down on EPO, and reliable tests will probably be in place by next year. Other sports will disassociate themselves from any calls to legalise performance drugs, and deny that their sports have serious drug problems. Next year there will continue to be widespread use of new undetectable drugs, but EPO will go out of fashion.

Drug testing will remain years behind drug taking, and the Tour de France will go back to normal.


A furtive Zulle finds his “special” locker empty, and suspects one of his rivals may have ripped off his 400 vials of EPO.

We’ve been after this agency for a while, and are now pleased to announce an exclusive dealership for the whole Wellington region.

Remember, we service what we sell.


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The new Cactus brochure adds some extra style and cred to their range by incorporating a photo of Henry, who appears to be endorsing  a pair of the new  “Dreadnought” pants. Henry does own 6 different Cactus bags, but he has never had a pair of Dreadnoughts.

In fact he is still waiting on his new  pair of free “Hangdog” shorts. Where are they Ben?

You don’t want us to post that dodgy pic of you with the “new product” do you?


Send us pictures of what you get up to in your CS T-shirts, (preferably involving bicycles and/or substances) and you too could be featured on our “Sifters In T-Shirts page.

Wellington Top Shop Award 98.

We were frotting out to learn that we are nominees for Wellington’s Top Shop Award for 98. We were last nominated for this award in 93.

This is what our certificate looks like:

And this is the letter that got us nominated:

“During the school holidays I took my son shopping to look for a new mountain bike. At each shop we explained what he was looking for, how much he had to spend and that we were looking around to see where he could get the best value for his hard earned (!) money,

Some staff showed him the latest, smartest looking bikes without really listening to what he was saying. Some ignored us totally and continued talking on the phone or to each other. One person was helpful but didn’t have anything the right size in stock (in fact, he was the only person in any of those stores who even bothered to work out what the right size was!). And then we went to Cycle Services in Cuba St. Rod Bardsley listened carefully to what my son wanted, could afford, and where he would ride it. He showed us what he had in stock that would be suitable, but was honest to point out that he didn’t think that it would be suitable for very long as Ant is still growing. He suggested that for a little more he could custom build a bike of much better quality components which would last for a long time. While we went off to consider this he gave us a list of checkpoints to look for on other bikes and offered to check over any other bike that we might buy elsewhere. His prime concern (whether he made a sale or not) was that Ant would get a fair deal and a bike that he would be happy with for some years.We were amazed at his attitude compared to the other bike shops, and his willingness to spend the time making sure that Ant would get maximum value for his money.

Yes, we did return and order a bike from Rod – which was ready the next day, came with free servicing and an invitation to return for advice when required – and would very much like to nominate Cycle Services for the Top Shop’98 Award …. they certainly deserve to win it!

The Cyberfrot Website.

How is the website going, pseudo-cyber sifters have been asking. Well it has been progressing well, and now has 64 pages of dubious content. Word has been getting around, and the site is clocking around 15 hits per day. We had a small celebration involving 10 dozen beers and some other products when we clocked our first 1000 hits. There is now an updates link page, so you can sift in once a month and easily find the new stuff. From now on we are going to start posting the newsletter updates as they are written, rather than waiting for a full six page printable version to be ready before putting it on line. This will make the printed version even more out of date and backward, just how you like them. The last newsletter was printed on baby blue paper instead of insipid green because the guy who does our printing cocked up. We are not colour blind retards, although some sphincter faced knob-ends have called us worse.

Interestingly enough, reputable international research has shown that New Zealand has the highest per capita usage of the internet of anywhere in the world. And within NZ, the highest internet usage is in Wellington. NZ also has the highest number of mountainbikers per capita, and again Wellington has the highest number in NZ. (We also have the worlds highest number of movie theaters per capita). So it’s not really surprising that there’s several mountain biking web sites based in Wellington. One of these sites is called “(ride) magazine” and they do web site reviews. We were reasonably pleased with the their review of our site, so here it is:

“(ride) Magazine” –    October Site of the Month- Cycle Services Cyber Frot

…if your headspace is softcore, head back to the gimp compound right now…

So starts the front page of the new Cycle Services website. From profiles and advice, to crash photos and news, this site has it all. I must admit, that when I saw Cyber-Frot, I was not too impressed, but I found that the site grew on me as I visited a few more times. The bright green text, purple backgrounds, and loud headlines look awful at first, but the more you get into it, the more you realise that the site perfectly sums up the spirit of Cycle Services. The character of the site is alluded to in their domain-, a great touch. Cyber-Frot has grown remarkably in the last two months, and now boasts an impressive collection of newsletter archives, funny stories, and a great gallery of crash photos. In keeping with the sifty traditions of the shop, there’s also a section where you can check out lifestyle tips, quotes, graphic art, and even a few photos of the sifters in action.

It’s hard to fault such a funny and crazy site. Despite the limitations of the design, Cyber Frot has really great content, and that after all is the main reason most people go to a site. Its not very often you see such down to earth and amusing web sites these days. I highly recommend…

New Bikes for the 99 Season

This year we have sorted out the best line up of new bikes we have had in years. We are now stocking Gary Fisher, Diamondback, GT, Haro, Iron Horse, and Rocky Mountain mountainbikes,  We can supply and custom build Foes and Intense downhill framesets, and Alan, Ciocc, LeMond, Peugeot, Look, and Hillbrick road frames. Last year we had some hideous problems with models not arriving, containers falling off ships, late deliveries, suppliers going bust, and other total bollocks. This season we have the goods, and despite the weak $NZ, we still have some very competitively priced models.

Bike Prices and CU brands.

While car prices have dropped, bike prices have gone up for the first time in eight years. Some companies have gone up in price more than others – probably the worst increase was Cannondale whose prices were going to increase by around 45%, but are now not going to be distributed in NZ anyway. Here’s a few of the brands that have disappeared from CS over the years, and what has happened to them:


Alpinestars –

NZ importer dropped agency, and brand has disappeared anyway.

Bauer –

NZ parent company have gone bankrupt.

Bianchi –

Australasian Distributor has closed down.

Cannondale –

NZ Distributor has dropped agency.

Marin –

NZ importer have gone bankrupt.(Penny Farthings/Bike Barn import their own)

Milazo –

NZ importers went bust – name now slapped on dodgy Warehouse bikes.

Reiker –

NZ manufacturer no longer producing for retail.

Specialized –

Now imported by Avanti and available only through Avanti shops.

Yak –

NZ manufacturer went bust.


The Cult Of Rico.

To answer some recent enquiries; Yes, Rico is a real person, not a cartoon character we made up. He really is NZ#3 downhiller, and the reason no one has heard of him is that he is so small he just sort of blends in and goes unnoticed. Rico is not his real name, but he adopted it to enhance his self styled image as a Puerto Rican hit man. The reason we originally misspelled his name as “Ricco”is because Rico himself didn’t know how it should be spelt, not because the editor is a bozo, as some persons have insinuated. He rides for Sam’s Bike Shop, and Giant Bicycles. He dresses in loud suits, and when he gets drunk he falls over. We have photos to share with you. These are authentic pictures, snapped by our on the spot sifter watcher, Pip Thomson.

Rico at 7:28pm –  Styling Dude.

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Getting fully munted at 7:42pm.

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It’s all over – 8:05pm –
time for bed.

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MARCH 1999

SAM RAPHAEL 1971 – 1999

Sam was killed while out riding on Saturday 20th Febuary 99. He was training for the Ironman at Taupo and was in peak form and ready to kick some arse. We were all shocked and completely stunned by his sudden death. He had masses of friends, and we miss him a lot. There’s a lot of funny and seriously hardcore stories of Sam’s exploits, so as a tribute to Sam we will try to relate some of them. Maybe Sam would have prefered us to focus on his awesome fitness, and the triathlons that he raced in, but then again, he always loved a good laugh. Here’s a few for starters.

A Bit Late

“I’ll be a bit late tomorrow, I’m going training in the morning”, Sam said one evening. The next day he didn’t turn up until mid afternoon. When he finally did turn up he was looking pretty shagged, and sat in the office for a while staring at the ceiling. Then he staggered to his feet and said, “Mind if I have the afternoon off, I’ve got to do some more training”, and off he went. The next day we learned what he spent the day doing. He put his running gear into a backpack, got on his bike and rode out to the Rimutuka Forest Park. Telling the disbelieving woman at the visitor centre that he was going to run to the top of Mt Matthews and back, he asked her to watch his bike. Sure enough he completed the two day hard tramp in a few hours, and then rode back into town at full speed, timing the whole thing. Realising he hadn’t done any swimming that day, he finished up with 50 lengths of the pool. The next day he came to work and did nothing all day but stagger back and forth to the coffee shop and refuel.

The Smell

A few days after Sam had left to go to Hawaii for the Ironman, we started to notice a smell around the shop. We cleaned up and put the rubbish out, but it still remained. Next we hosed out the drains and checked the sewerage pipes, but the smell remained, and it was getting pretty bad. Finally it dawned on us – what a bunch of morons, the smell was coming from Sam’s box of clothes. As we tipped out some towels and shirts, we unearthed a smell so bad we were gagging. At the bottom of the box was a pair of leather sandals, and the smell coming off them was so bad that once we let them loose, it took days of spraying air-freshener to make the shop stop smelling. We sealed them in two plastic bags and threw them out into the backyard, but even the backyard was starting to smell by the time Sam got back.

The Firehose

When Oli was cleaning his bike with the firehose one day, Sam managed to catch him out with the classic bozo trick. Gradually he turned the water pressure down, first down to a trickle, then right down to nothing. Unbelievably, Oli finally picked up the hose and looked straight down the end of it. Of course Sam was waiting for just this eventuality, and turned the pressure back up to full bore. He nearly waterblasted Oli’s head clean off. We nearly wet ourselves laughing. Well, Oli didn’t, but he was already wet enough. Luckily, Sam had thought to lock the door from inside, and managed to prevent a nasty act of retribution.

Pete Griffin’s Breakfast

One of Sam’s strangest obsessions was his flatmate Pete Griffin’s breakfast. Whenever he had several Monteiths to drink, he would tell us about Pete’s eating habits, which he spent many hours observing. Firstly Pete had a special cupboard for his food, his food was limited to a very limited range of pre-packaged food stuffs, and he ate the same thing at the same time every day. But it was his fastidious preparation of breakfast toast that Sam was most fascinated with. We would await each detail; How many slices, how he waited until they were all toasted before eating them so that he could get them all spread evenly, what he spread on them and how thick, the margin of toast round the edge that he didn’t put spread on, the back up spreads in the cupboard in case he ran out, his eating posture and positioning in his favorite chair, and any occasional variations to standard routine – different garments worn, extra knives used, and so on. It was a good thing that Sam spent so much time training, otherwise he probably would have spent more time watching Pete eat his dinner.

Sam at Work! – A rare photo of Sam at work. At least probably about to do some work. Maybe reaching for a coffee.

A Frenzied Subliminal Summer

We have been very busy all summer, setting sales turnover records for October, November, December, February, and March, by doing thousands of repairs, and even selling a few bikes. Maybe it’s all because of Rod’s Radio Active Cycle Reports. Rod has been rabbiting on about what goes off and where, and to our amazement there are a huge group of followers who seem to believe everything he says. The subliminal message “give all your money to Cycle Services” has been working wonders, and we have also been trialling “I need everything Rod sells me” Six months of amazingly good weather may have had something to do with it as well.

Where’s JK?

John Kirkcaldie scored himself a factory ride for Schwinn in 99, so he’s now a big bucks DH professional. Obviously handling himself with style, we were impressed with his first write up in VeloNews. This appeared in the February 8 1999 Issue:

“New Zealander John Kirkcaldie showed up at the Schwinn-Toyota RAV4 downhill team’s January motorcycle skills camp with a couple of shiners and a wicked gash between the eyes. Seems there are two versions about what happened. The story given to team management had BMX bikes and dirt jumps involved. When cornered however, Kirkcaldie admitted he actually took some lumps in a New Years Eve brawl. While stepping to a night club with some friends, the former rugby player said he “cut in front of the biggest bastard there was. I happened to have talked some shit to him. Obviously I put up a bit of a fight because I have scabs all over my body.” Kirkcaldie said he was going to come clean to his team, sooner or later. Better make it sooner, John.”

Cycle Services MTB National DH Champions

Congratulations to Myra Moller, 99 National Expert Junior Womens XC Champion, and Kirstin Drabble, 99 Senior Womens DH Champion.

Pip Winning

Pip Thomson kicking arse in the Dunedin round of the Nationals. She went on to win this race, and finished 3rd overall in the Expert 30+ Women.

Guess the CS Sifter Competition

Alias :
a. Albert Kingi
b. Poison Dwarf
c. Little Nig
d. The Fluid Mechanic

Occupation :
a. Arbitor
b. Barista
c. Chemist
d. Toreador

Activity :
a. Tossing a bike
b. Having a heave
c. Frotting against a railing
d. Urinating off balcony

Drug Enhancement :
a. Designer latte
b. Monster bucket bong
c. Creatine
d. Hallucinagenic suppository

Inventor Of :
a. Frottage
b. Seat Post Tossing
c. Nihilism
d. Hallucinogenic suppositories

Rules of the competition: The Multi Choice selection are a range of clues…. The careful observation of these clues you may trigger within you a recollection of the real name of our featured sifter.

Any competitor with the correct answer goes into the draw to win Hallucinogenic Suppositories


Cross Country

Myra Moller

1st Expert Junior Women

Pip Thomson

3rd Expert 30+ Women

Adrian Elzinga

10th Pro Elite Men

Richard Smith

20th Pro Elite Men

Paul Odlin

13th Expert Under 23

Jimmy Mitchell

17th Expert Senior Men

Marcus Simons

2nd Sport Senior Men

Down Hill

Kirstin Drabble

1st Senior Women

Mike Williamson

11th Senior Men

Jimmy Mitchell

20th Senior Men

Aaron Lucy

23rd Senior Men

Stewart Doherty

24th Senior Men

Rod Bardsley

6th Master 30+ Men


Our friendly printer, who gives us the best service we have ever known, was broken, distraught, gutted, and reduced to tears by the recent insinuation that our newsletter once being printed on insipid pale blue paper was due to “printer error”. In fact Henry told him to just knock it off on whatever paper was lying about because we were in a hurry. Sorry “BILL”. To make it up to “Bill”, we have included this stylish picture of his mate “Gordy”


It’s easy to see from this photo why Gordy was chosen to ride as a professional for the English Harrods Team. With his photogenic professionalism he encompasses exactly the upmarket image that a team like Harrods is looking for to represent them in the international media. It’s hard for downhillers to compete with this, even pros like JK.

Gordon Thrusty-1.jpg (20504 bytes)

The CS entries to Tama’s Haiku contest

“Poetry with teeth” – The Collected works of CS – should win the T-shirt

Rod the lilac blur

Rides faster than you poseurs

Mud Boys are too slow

Sift and frot and munt

Are words that Tama borrowed

Give them back you punk

Wicked tongue it liz

Is that the gig with you bro?

Sifty bunch of arse

Liz bike you punter

Should have bought a new Fisher

Now your frame is fucked

Skunk is grunty weed

Just one pipe got me wasted

Have to have a feed

Now bring out the gimp

And put him on Tama’s bike

He will not come last

CS are the champs

Our website is more purple

Better photos too

Kirky Van Damme – The Street Fighting Man

Problems defending the peloton from unco tri geeks with serious road occupancy insecurity problems?

Kirky is the man – he takes no prisoners! Seen here putting the hurt on in the 98 Palmie to Wellington.

Kirky 1 B-2 copy.jpg (43993 bytes)

New NZ MTB video “Tranz Mission Ride”

Unlike the limp Auckland MTB video, this one goes off. It ranks up there with many of the well known English and American Vids, but it’s very different. NZ riding involves going hard and fast down rough tracks and keeping it together over nasty shit. There’s not a lot of big air, or masses of crashes, although there certainly are some. But it’s the real stuff, and some of the footage is really cool. Highlights include Rico going full speed down rutted firebreaks, Glen Sisarich and the New Plymouth crew doing some wild riding, and a guy called Boycey going apeshit down a 4-wheel drive track. It’s great to see the locals going off on video. The soundtrack is entirely Head Like A Hole, so it’s a good thing they rock out. Yes, Rod is on it, but only a little bit. There’s lots of Rico, we call it the “Tranz Mission Rico” video. The editing is slick, and the video is well worth $29.95. Highly recommended, excellent gift.

JULY 1999

Punters have still been asking the usual “what’s happened to the newsletter” from time to time. We tell them that it’s all on line now, wicked action, up to date every month, get wired you punks. They look broken and go off mouthing about “computer wankers”.

As all you computer wankers know, the newsletters on line are just as out of date as the printed ones ever were. One good thing though, is that on the website we can write newsletters retrospectively, then post them, and pretend they were there all along. Or just update ones that were originally posted with stuff all in them, which is what’s happened to the March 99 Newsletter.

Although our friendly printer “Bill”, is raring to go, and wants to spit out some hardcopy, we have just been too slack to get around to it, so that means you computer wankers are the only ones who know wha’s hap’n bro.

Cycle Services Downhill Race – Sunday 11 July

This was held at Baxter’s Knob, the hill behind Aeotea lagoon, near Porirua. The race was an all new format – 3 way elimination runs. The course started off wide, then became tight technical singletrack, before opening up into a more open motorcross style bottom half, with some great jumps. There was a best of three format, sort of a cross between Slalom, DH Eliminator racing, and Boardercross. Sponsors were Cycle Services and Hutchinson, and prizes included the hot new Hutchinson 2.4 DH tyres, and 20 half price Hutchinson Tyre Vouchers. After a fair bit of rain during the week, the weekend was fine, the track dried up, and it was an excellent day. This area is worth checking out, and most of the DH course still remains. The photo shoes the lower section, and the view out over Porirua Harbour and Titahi Bay. Yes, that’s Wheels BEATING Haldane in one of the runs. All Righty!!!

Baxters Knob.jpg (107164 bytes)

Rod Is Overseas

Rod will be overseas from June to November. He and Rhiannon visited Thailand, and then went on to London, where they are living. Rod is working in a bike shop in London, and will be doing some film work involving MTB videos. He will be flying over to Canada to race at the Master’s World Downhill Champs. We were thinking of replacing him with a life-size cardboard cutout, and a shrine, but decided against it because we didn’t want a bunch of schoolboys with peroxided hair kneeling all over the place.

New CS Clothing Label

To compliment our popular Flaming Logo T-shirts, we will also be printing a limited run of our new label “SIFT”. Unveiled for the first time, here it is:

Bugle tests prototype 12″ travel downhill NECK!!

Looking quite pleased with himself after a quick blast round the Karipoti, Bugle say’s it would be hard to go back to a rigid neck after using this long travel downhill system

Bugle's neck.jpg (89831 bytes)

The Brake Pad Guy

Believe it or not, there is a tosser who has pulled this stunt on most of the bike shops in Wellington and the Hutt Valley. First he steals a set of brake pads off the shelf. Then he returns them saying the shop sold him the wrong type. He gets really shitty about it, and demands a different type or a refund. Then he takes the money or new pads and leaves. Why he doesn’t just steal the right type in the first place is an obvious question. What he does with all those brake pads is another mystery. Anyway, after doing his second branch of “On Yer Bike”, who rang around the other shops, he pushed his luck too far, and got arrested for doing it in “Toyworld’ Lower Hutt.


Barnie’s Hardcore Fashion Statement

Barnie is a roadie, but he doesn’t dress like some Euro Pro, he models himself on hardman Clint Eastwood – in Dirty Harry’s Retro Threads. This is a great example for any roadie who needs a new image. There’s plenty of hardmen left to choose from – Dolf Lundgren, Arnie, Beavis and Butthead, Fred Flintstone, Jake the Muss, Don Johnson, the short guy from Fantasy Island – or maybe even a Downhiller like Missy Giove. Get a new image and look hard off the bike too.

Dirty Barnie Original.jpg (68896 bytes)


The CS Hardcore Grommit Development Squad

They can pull wheelies, jump curbs, fetch McDonalds, wear goggles, and harass Frumpy Moles and Liz Punks. Watch out for “The Kids”, they are fearless instigators….


Grommets x4.jpg (80585 bytes)


Inside Goss from the NZ cycle industry.

Watch out for a lot of cut price sales this winter as over stocked shops and suppliers struggle to unload stock. A lot of this stuff is very close to cost, and there are some good deals out there, so snaffle them up while the price is right.

What’s going on? – Firstly bicycle sales are declining world wide as the mountain bike boom comes to an end, Mountain bikes have been the main growth sector of the bicycle market over the past 10 years, and although new bike sales have been declining over the past three years, to some extent this was offset by increased spending on new technology – mainly expensive suspension and downhill bikes. This market has become increasingly specialised, and there is now a move back to simpler hardtail bikes for general riding.

When the number of people riding is remaining static, new products are the main thing that boost sales, but the only significant new development in the pipeline is mass market disc brakes. There are heaps of people out there riding bikes, and they are not giving up, but they are becoming less competitive, and keeping their bikes longer. Like the populations of developed nations as a whole, cyclists are aging. Unless a completely new bike design becomes popular, the cycle trade world wide is going to go into a major phase of retraction.

The new designs that are being developed by companies in the States and Taiwan are for electric powered transportation bikes – this is where they see new growth. These will not take off in NZ due to our vehicle licensing laws, which will classify electric bikes as motor vehicles, so disc brakes, and eventually internal gear hubs, are about it for NZ. In other words, there is probably no pressing desire for most cyclists to buy a new bike, other than it being so cheap that they would be a bozo to miss out. Hence 25% off sales.

New Zealand cycle businesses have also been adversely effected by internet sales, competition from other cheap consumer goods (cars, computers etc), and retailing as a whole has been static for the past two years. The NZ economy remains in an ongoing recession because of the huge portion of our earnings now being siphoned back out of the country due to overseas ownership of NZ assets. So support NZ owned companies, protest against asset sales and government corruption, vote Labour, and ride your bike more.

Myra Moller wins a world cup race in Australia.

Myra went over to Australia and won a round of the World Cup, in the Under 18 Division. Her ride was especially awesome considering she is only 15, and was riding a heavy old clunker. She has now picked up sponsorship from Iron Horse, and has a flash new bike.

Ahead Lite Light Systems

These light sets are the BOMB. 35W Helmet mount light, with velcro mount and built in tail light, and a big grunty battery that goes for 105 minutes. They are made in NZ and blow the arse off any imported lightset under $500. You can ride off road at nearly full speed with one of these, it’s like having a car headlight on your helmet. Handlebar mounted lights suck for offroad, but these helmet mount lights rock. Price is $249 with a cool electronic recharger that keeps the battery topped up, but never overcharged.

Technical Info for geeks:  Sealed Quartz Halogen 35W Light, Sealed Lead Acid 6.5Ah Battery, Dual Level electronically controlled charger with LED indicators, heavy duty wiring.

Aaron eats his own hand…

His burning ambition is to get on the SIF FACE page again. Yeah OK, his forehead didn’t used to be that big, but his brain grew. Aaron is a very brainy guy. If you are a bozo, try eating your own hand too, it may help.

Aaron eats hand-1b.jpg (43833 bytes)


Nothing gets me foamed up at the trough like some Hugo Boss suit wearing sifter waltzing into the shop and pulling out a call like, “well son, after going home to consume a substantial portion of roasted meat and listen to some hard uncompromising faceless techno music, I visited your website, and was most disappointed son, most disappointed, to find that it was entirely mainstream, not remotely bizarre, my accountant could have written it”.

It fully sucks when that happens, makes me feel like I’ve been pronged up the sphinky by a neutered filchhound, and that’s way too close to being a bunch of arse. So for September it’s just going to be more chops and less salad, more bush bashing and less keeping to the track. Get a mojo and use it.

Yes it’s true, Rod is back from overseas – here’s a pic to prove it….

Teletubies Rod.jpg (143801 bytes)

Rod’s Going Away Party

One of the advantages of being really behind, is posting stuff like this. Rod’s back now, and here’s some pics from his going away party. What a time saver!

He gave these enticing young ladies a tray of Red Bull each to pose with him for this photo for his “I am a chick magnet” collection.

Underage Sifters

Jon Calder, I hope that’s not beer you’re drinking there! – What would your mother say to that?

Just because Dinsey is a bad arse sifter, doesn’t mean you have to follow in his footsteps now does it?

Next you’ll be letting off fireworks in the street….

Dinsey, Jon, Beer!.jpg (83030 bytes)

Fan mail, hell yeah we dig fan mail, bring it on. Check out this action.



1st September 1999 

The Proprietor

Cycle Services

174 Cuba Street




Dear Sir,

It has come to the attention of Fuji Xerox New Zealand Limited (Fuji Xerox) that your Internet Web Site, namely that registered as world wide web site has recently published an article that infringes upon our Copy Right registered brand name and use of the Xerox digital X, which is a registered Trademark of Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific Pty and of Xerox Corporation.

Whilst we treat that as a serious matter in itself, your organisation has also brought the name of Xerox into bad repute through the unlawful and libellous allegations that have been levelled against one of our staff and his connection as an employee of Fuji Xerox New Zealand Limited, namely the individual Mr David Andrew Barnett of Lower Hutt New Zealand.

On behalf of Fuji Xerox we urge that you cease and desist with all references to Fuji Xerox, Xerox, or any images or material that contains references to such. We also recommend that you remove all images pertaining to David Andrew Barnett in total from the web site until further advice is taken by Fuji Xerox.

We are currently awaiting legal advice from our Lawyer as to what further action is to be taken, however we feel that legal action is inevitable.Yours faithfullyFuji Xerox New Zealand LimitedNorbert C. UnderhillLegal AdvisorCC: Mr Greg Brinck, Fuji Xerox Wellington      Davis Hearfield, Phillips Fox Auckland

Fuji Xerox New Zealand Limited, Xerox Centre, 17 Hargreaves St, P 0 Box 5948, Auckland


Yeah right, sure thing Norbert, we’ll just scoot right along then…..

Tech Tips – 9 Speed Sucks

(Or why bike manufacturers are con artists #257)

OK it has to be said…. 9 speed is totally inferior to 8 speed. When someone asks me about “upgrading their 8 speed bike to 9 speed” I nearly flip my wig… The only reason it has become so ubiquitous is because manufacturers love to push gimmicks, and punters just seem to lap up whatever hype they get dished out, seemingly having some kind of blind faith that if bike manufacturers are specing it, it must be OK. But it’s not.

What’s wrong with it? – the chain and all the tooth surfaces are too narrow, meaning that the load is concentrated into a tiny area, causing the the teeth to wear like never before. Under hard use 9sp wears at least 50% faster than 8sp, and it costs a lot more for replacement chains and cassettes. (there is no good reason for this cost difference either, it’s not like they are higher quality…)

A lot of people are unaware that 8 speed is still available, but it is, and the set up I recommend is XT 8sp rapid fire shifter pods, with a SRAM 11-28T or 11-32T 5.0 8sp cassette, a SRAM PC68 chain, an XT 9sp long cage rear derailleur and an XT high mount 9 sp Mega range front derailleur. This set up works better, and is more durable than anything else around. (An XT 11-30T cassette will give even better gear ratios, but costs more than the SRAM ones).

Some light riders get away with 9sp, but strong or heavy riders never do. 9sp is an expensive con job. Yes, we sell lots of 9sp chains and chainrings, but my advice to anyone who wants the best gear is: upgrade your 9 speed bike to 8 speed. Just as chromoly frames are better than aluminium, 8 is better than 9.

Two laps of Ngamu Forest in muddy conditions and this 8 speed drive train was messy – but 9 speed wouldn’t have lasted the race!

Gearing is an area in which reality has been swamped in a sea of marketing bullshit. All bikes were single speed once, and at the other end of the spectrum it would be quite possible now to make a 560 speed bike (14 speed internal hub with 10 speed cassette and 4 front chainrings). But despite what sales assistants and bike brochures may say, it’s no improvement to go from 24 to 27 “gears”. In fact., it’s a major downgrade.

So what is optimum? When MTBs were first mass produced in the mid 80s, road bikes were using 6 speed clusters, with two front chainrings. MTBs added a third chainring and were all 18 speed. What limited them was not the number of gears, but the fact that the screw on (mostly Suntour) clusters were fitted to screw on hubs that were inherently too weak for any serious off road use.  The axles would bend and break with monotonous regularity, because the bearings were too inboard to spread the load. The first big advancement in gearing was the use of Shimano cassette style hubs.

In the late 80s, the std gear ratios sold were 26/36/46 with a 13-28T 6sp cassette. Most manufactures were fitting a 26T smallest cog, which was bogus, but most people in the know soon swapped to a 24T small chainring. These 18sp setups provided a gear range of 22-108″ – a very useful spread of gears.

The gear calculation formula is chainring size x wheel size in inches divided by rear cog size. eg. (46T x 26″)/12T, or you can look it up on a gear chart. (for road bikes approximate 700C to 27″)

At this point, the marketing department took over – moving to 21 speed is an impressive sounding upgrade, and it was bound to happen. Even though it required going to wider hubs and frames, along with a narrower chain, I think this upgrade was worthwhile. For durability and cheapness those old 18 speeds couldn’t be beaten, but the jumps in gear sizes were slightly too large. Also the new freehub design allowed the use of a 12T cog, giving a decent sized downhill gear. At this point, the 24/36/46 chainrings and 12-30T cassettes were giving spread of 21-110″ – note that this range has never been bettered on any subsequent production groupsets – and we are talking 1990 here.

At the same time as gear numbers were increasing, there were some other developments happening. “Hyperglide”, a system of ramps and reduced tooth sizes to make shifting under power easier, was the best one. Unfortunately, it sacrificed some of the reliability and durability of the drivetrain in order to make it easier to change gear for people who didn’t shift smoothly. All modern drivetrains are hyperglide style, and this is one of the reasons they wear out so much quicker than the old 1980’s ones. Despite this, I still rate hyperglide as an improvement – it made riding easier and more fun, so that’s cool. And Biopace, Shimano’s dumbest ever creation, thankfully disappeared for ever more. So by 1991, drivetrains were pretty well sorted.

Was this the optimum point? I say not – there was one more thing – with a simple change to the freehub body, it was possible to go to 8 gears on the back, while sticking with the same chain and hub spacing. Nothing was sacrificed. this was the ultimate upgrade, and it could have been the optimum setup from then on – a 24/36/46 crankset with an 11-30T 8 speed cassette (21-115″). There it was – the best setup, back in 1991, and to tell the truth, I have used it on all my own bikes ever since. But did the public get offered it? Hell no!

Soon some bozo invented “microdrive” (after 9sp, one of my pet hates) and all of a sudden, those previously excellent 8sp drivetrains were coming with smaller 22/32/42 chainwheels on the front. The top gear dropped to a sorry arsed 100″.

Where did microdrive spring from? To be honest, I never thought at the time that it would stay, it always seemed like another stupid fad. And it is. But it still exists. I blame “weight weenies” who were a big influence in the early 90s. By the end of the decade weenies were history, but microdrive lives on.

My theory is that because very few of the people who were riding offroad in the early 90s are still riding offroad now, people now think microdrive is all there is and accept it as normal. As well as dropping off all the top end gearing, microdrive also wears out quicker, because there are fewer teeth contacting the chain.

There’s got to be some reason! Ok, here it is. The 32T middle cog supposedly means you can ride uphill without having to change into the “granny gear”. Microdrive simply makes the middle chainring an effective second granny gear, so people with a lack of power can delude themselves that they are middle chainring thrashers. Have to blame the bible thumping gimps at Mountain Bike Action Magazine for this … (although it has to be said that at least they never liked 9 speed)

So after settling down for a few years with the 8sp Microdrive setup things were getting boring, and MTB sales were dropping off rapidly. hence 9 speed. By making the cogs and chain narrower (and weaker) it is possible to jam 9 cogs in where there were previously only 8. Sometimes the extra cog is a 32T to give an even lower gear.

It’s not practical to ride in a 22x32t gear (18″) as our legs would whizz round so fast they would fly off. It’s actually there so you can stay in that 32t mid chainring and ride up almost every hill. This means that you could take off your 22T cog and dump it (to save weight). Except that then you would only have 18 gears (2×9) and you would be right back where it all started. Sometimes the extra cog is just stuck in the middle, giving closer gear ratios, like a road bike. But closer gear ratios on a MTB just mean more gear changing, because it means that you have to do two gear changes to get a meaningful change in gear ratio.

Even if a 9sp offers no real gains, what harm does it do? OK, we sell 9sp cassettes, and it suits us fine if we sell more of them. But I hate selling bogus stuff and I think that marketing scams like this hurt the whole bike industry.

I haven’t seen any test results, but my own guestimate is that in the best conditions (clean/dry/light or weak rider) 9sp wears out 25% faster than 8sp. But in the worst conditions (dirty/muddy/heavy and strong rider) it can actually wear out over twice as fast (100%+). In fact, I have seen 9sp drivetrains that were technically worn out (chain checker into the red and teeth visibly shark fin shaped) after one ride! And this is XT level componentry….

It’s rare to find anyone who thinks that wear rates of 9sp gear is acceptable. But the belief that it is an unavoidable evil is widespread. Not true. 8sp components are readily available so its easy and worthwhile to upgrade a 9sp bike to 8sp, while doing a drivetrain replacement. Here’s how:

If the bike’s drivetrain is worn, you are going to have to replace the chain, cassette and middle (32T) chainring for sure. Replace them with 8sp ones. Freehub bodies are all 8sp and 9sp compatible, so that won’t be a problem, as are front and rear derailleurs. The LH shifter is still OK, so only the RH shifter needs to be changed. No difficult choices here – an XT 8sp pod (NZ$125) is the only option. (Yes Shimano do still make them and they are available in NZ) It’s probably best to replace the small ring with a stainless steel 8sp one, to avoid chainsuck (and that probably would have been needing replacement anyway), but chances are the existing 42T ring will be OK. So really the only extra cost is the 8sp shifter, but as all the other parts are cheaper in 8sp than 9sp, the total cost is similar. And as the 8sp setup will last between 25% – 100%+ longer, it’s pretty economical after 6 months use.

Bail out options:

Single speed

The backlash against marketing driven technology is the single speed – a return to cycling roots. Riding a single speed will mean less repair costs, but that’s not the main reason people buy them. In fact, they generally cost a lot more initially than a multispeed bike and it would take a long time to recoup the cost. It’s more of an aesthetic choice – the purist response to the corruption of the bicycle by marketing cretins. They work Ok on the flat. but in NZ it’s not flat, we have mountains and one gear is far from optimum. I would say it’s 23 gears too few. Escaping from 27speed by going back to one speed is a head in the sand approach to technology.

Multispeed hubs

Some people, especially those with an interest in engineering, feel that the whole derailleur system is an outdated dinosaur, that should be replaced with an internal hub. And it’s true that a 14 speed Rollhof hub is a very nice alternative, but are you riding a custom built titanium frame, with the top of the line Marzocchi forks, Hope discs with XTR and Race face components? If not, then the NZ$1500 on a hub could arguably be spent on upgrades that will make more difference to your performance. especially the forks. If the Rollhof system was selling for around NZ$500, the derailleur system could well become outdated. especially if it was possible to change the hub’s gear ratios. But as with titanium frames, technology has to provide optimum value for money as well as performance, and no internal hubs do that at this point.

This top of the line Peugeot was 9 speed until it’s chain broke sending it flying off a balcony repeatedly...


“BJ” from Sportspro knows how to get some air – here he is pulling a no footer.

And we thought he just spent all his time modeling Shift gear..

BJ No Feet2.JPG (181275 bytes)



The Wellington Downhill Cup

The 1999 Downhill Cup Series will be held over 5 events – Orongaronga, Battle Hill, Makara, Mt Kau Kau, and Wainui Downhill Park.


Orongaronga (Sam’s Bike Shop)       7th November 1999
Makara (Mud Cycles)      21st November 1999
Battle Hill (Cycle Services)       5th December 1999
Mt Kau Kau (J’ville Cycles)       12th March 2000
  Wainui Downhill Park (Bluebird Cycles)      26th March 2000


Cycle Services is sponsoring the Battle Hill Round on 5th December 1999.

All races start at 10am, with briefing at 9:30am.


Last newsletter – more time for sifting

For all the fans and stalkers here’s one last CS Newsletter. I know this makes me sound like King Sifty of the Sift people, but it’s quite hard work writing newsletters, and I think this one will just have to call itself the last one… all good things must come to an end…

So, like a pile of fetid seaweed adrift in the Bermuda triangle, the last ever newsletter has been cast into the oblivious void of cyberspace, destined to float aimlessly about mutating and devolving.

As always the CS website has been pretty out of date lately, but it still seems to do the job anyway, and I don’t update it very often  because I’m a sifter. But once in a while I am overcome by these uncontrollable urges, and the site gets some new action. In fact only minutes ago I was lying comfortably in the sun thinking of having a relaxing sleep. But then with new resolve I decided to come inside to lurk in a dark room, put on my best nipple clamps, and knock off this last newsletter.

Sometimes, things conspire to remind me how important it is stop working so hard and spend more time cruising out! There is a real work ethic thing going around these days, but I for one, say work is unhealthy and best avoided…..

CU, Wheels.



Oli is still pumping out the bike repairs, from his workshop in Holloway Road. He was unable to live without regular use of his hammer, and after getting A’s for his Uni English courses he just had had to get back to a more full scale dose of the well greased bicycle. An ever increasing clientele are making there way to his sumptuously appointed workshop (yes it really does have a magazine collection, a poster collection, armchairs, music, coffee and toast!). So if you’ve been getting lizzed out by some spastic monkey boy tuning your bike like a chump, give Oli a try. Check out his website at

Creating CS Newsletters in a Freak void

Back in the heyday of the Cycle Services shop, writing the newsletter was relatively straightforward. Within the confines of a mecca for every drug-addled mountain man and extreme-sport frenzied urban philosopher, it was just a matter of letting material transmute by osmosis and then recreating it word for word on dodgy looking green paper.

Having conversations with sifters who believe they are about to make it big time with get-rich schemes such as putting pharmaceutical grade THC in the water supply and then selling chocolate chip muffins wrapped in tin foil from a chain of armoured serving hatches in 10ft high corrugated iron fences (called “The Muffin House”) is an unfailing way to get material.

Like one of those dodgy pseudo docos on TV2, I sometimes think it would be interesting to go back and do “ex-crazed sifters on MTBs – where are they now?” But sadly, the truth is less bizarre than the suit-clad, Toyota-driving, cross-dressing bank employees who worshipped those ex sifters must have hoped for. Most of them have become creatures of the computer – hence the multitude of email addresses such as – where they beaver away working for “the man” (or in this day and age “the woman”) previously known in a more cynical age as “the tossers who run the country”. (It now appears they were not so much running it as selling it to the Americans, who, finding it wanting, have since chewed it up and just left the gristly bits)

And a huge portion of the sifterhood has found it necessary to go overseas. After making full use of their student loan facilities to purchase state of the art downhill bikes, which they later sold for half a ticket to get-me-the-hell-out-of-here, they find themselves being paid sums such as $NZ100 an hour to remain places where high quality drugs cost $NZ15 for a whole night’s kinky loving*. Sometimes they are tempted to come home and pay off their student loans working for $NZ20 an hour, but then the drugs wear off and they decide to go to a party in the Swiss Alps instead.

*And for a prime example of this, see the new competition – “Name the Sifter” – below!

As one of the people who helped convince so many impressionable minds that they required 4” of travel (back when 4” was damn impressive) and who instigated the charging up of this excess travel onto the government loan scheme, I sometimes feel slightly responsible. But then I go to Courtenay Place and see all the Honda CRXs scraping their lowered body skirts along the tarmac, unable to enter drive-ins because they get stuck on the judder bars, their teenage drivers deaf from 1000 watts of the gayest “oonce” music ever programmed onto a CD by a talentless Euro Burger King janitor. And I feel OK, cos I did my bit to stop the youth of yesterday turning out like such a bunch of Nanas, and what more can you do?

To a lot of us, those great days of mountain biking were about more than just mountain biking. They were about drugs and mountain biking. And with drugs came great, world changing ideas, the meaning of the universe and an insatiable quest for … food. Clearly, we weren’t trying to win Olympic medals. But if there was one thing we stood for, it was to stop posing and do the business.

Cycle Services was often a lot of fun, and the people who hung out there were what made it. They were a pretty unique bunch. It’s a shame that so much talent and ability should end up scattered around the globe. Hopefully, one day they will come back, because it will be a real waste if this country ends up nothing more than an American golf course. But that’s not to say we have to sit around and let that happen. Even sifters can make shit happen sometimes.

Once I could write a newsletter, talk someone into running off 100 copies on the work photocopier and then leave it on the counter to sift off into the surrounding society like a virus or a dose of pharmaceutical grade THC in the water supply. Thankfully, we now have Mikey Havoc and Newsboy to go around instigating things like “arse” and “Gore is gay”, but where would we be without those shralving, sifting, totally frotting old days when we could say stuff like “hey tosser, your bike’s a liz bunch of arse and you’ve got a serious problem with your sphincter, so go tongue it.” And that was just the women. We were trendsetters all right, and it could all just be ancient history. But fortunately, there is still cyberspace….

Actual Road Riding

The purple jerseys are still out there – check out this team CS Roadie Chicks. They won the women’s section of the recent Hope Gibbons TT. The team was Pip Thomson, Caroline West, Jane Williams, and Margaret Raddich.

Rider Profile – Guido the Donkey Boy

He’s no chump, Wellington’s answer to Seth Enslow is Guido the Donkey Boy. This hard riding, big air groover is equally at home on the hardtail or the donkey.

Name: Guido
Nickname: The Dinsman
Age: Young Spinner
Suburb: South of the Border
Occupation: Donkey Herder
Bike: “BOY” (not as gay as it sounds….but still quite gay)
Components: Rockshox 2001 Psylo forks, and some wheels and stuff
Extras: Fat pedals and a stumpy arse seat
Most awesome ride/race: Te Papa shrubs
Other favourite rides: Tinakori
Favourite food: Burritos, Meat Pies
Favourite music: Ozzy and Black Sabbath
Favourite films: Deliverance, Deuce Bigalow
Ambitions/aspirations: Motorcycle Stuntman
Hot comment action: Where is Jennifer?

Guido’s Fan Mail

(a recent letter to Guido from one of his many admirers)

What have you done with yourself Senor Guido?

After our meeting, while traversing to a sqeeerel seeking mission, in the scrub on Mt Vic on my motorbike, I witnessed of a strange sight. Behold Senor Guido pedaling his velocipede down Taranaki street. After honking the vision still paid no attention, it was his pudding bowl helmet caused him no ears. He had no ears. His buddy Ben followed watching his AAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRSSSSEEEE and looking for a dealer to partake transaction. I was increasingly eager to commence looking for the sqeeerels.

Later, these images causing me to seek companionship on the internet I was troubled to find the same visions still haunting me. Under thinly veiled pseudonyms the one known only as Guido proclaimed unspeakable travesties and I was stunned into submission. Uttering to assist the K Bros on a track building mission without payment, I realised he had been kidnapped by aliens and after the anal probing he became someone else, someone softer, without malice, he helped kittens cross the road and played hopscotch with the retarded Chilean hitman’s inbred children.

Slipping into thoughts of the inevitable downward spiral, I lit up a pipe and inhaled deeply the quality northern cannabis that I had secured from my ex dealer now departed. Then with new clarity, I realised that the offer of track building was only to assist the seeking of sqeeerels, lurking deep within Makara Peak. The riding too was a product of the endless quest for sqeeerels. What have you done with my donkey you cattle rustler? Chops and gravy.

Yours in concrete, Mr Jennifer.

Name the Ex-CS Sifter Competition #2

The first person to correctly name the sifter, and his or her current location and occupation, from this excerpt from a recent email, will win a genuine purple CS drink bottle! (Names have been changed to make it less incriminating. Sure looks like some of ex clean living innocent sponsored riders have turned into toal devos. Hope no-one at CS started them on the slippery slope…)

… life is manic – “bruce” a friend of mine has got a cool apartment that has all this bullshit and a bose wank remote that works from 2km away when you want to turn up the chili peppers from the 7-11. i am also being hunted by a “algerian” chick called “doris” as i told her some cool “algerian” slang ‘I esh longen shnarbel!'(i have a big dick! and they love to get naked as the summers are so short….or she just likes to get in my pants regularly. i told you about my friend “bruce” in algeria who has been on the island of sin for 2 years all through the manumission years? “bruce” & “doris” fuc*ing on stage that sort of stuff??? “bruce” working as a santa over xmas and fisting one of his elves in his grotty grotto, its one of the burdens of being viewed as a ‘”bruce” figure’ , perk of the job i suppose…

Down with the kids

How to be cool in MTB discussion boards and get down with the kids. Ten easy ways to get some street cred.

1. Practise the elimination of all spelling, and punctuation. eg. “Wana by a 6 inh travle fork tha hannles big jupms like im da man”

2. Add “u suc” to all sentances – several times if posible eg. “Wana by a 6 inh travle fork tha hannles big u suc jupms like im da man and u suk”

3. Put in plenty of curse words but spell them in ways that get through the censor. These are the only words that you should spell correctly except for a change to one letter. eg. “h0mo, Fu(ker, @rse, Su(k Ma B@lls, G@y, Peni$, Boll0cks, H1ck, Dipsh1t, etc”

4. Be sure to abuse XC riders (what ever is being discussed). They are “g@y”, they have their “seats up their @rses”, and they dress in “tight lycra” (especially pink lycra) eg. “Wana by a 6 inh travle fork tha hannles big u suc jupms like im da man and u Su(k Ma B@lls like a xc pink lycra seat h0mo”

5. Make it clear that you are sick of XC punks dissing you for not being g@y enough. They will never stop harrasing you until you scare them off the bulletin board. eg “Get of dissing my track/ride/pants/ar$e you XC gimp, jus cus yore peni$ is to small to handel a real track/ride/pants/ar$e, an if i see you on the track im gonna smash u bigtime loser.”

6. Talk like an African American from a hood in South Central LA. eg. “Wha yu dis my ride 4 like a crackhows niga homes when i jus wana by a 6 inh travle fork tha hannles big u suc jupms like im da man and u Su(k Ma B@lls like a xc pink lycra seat h0mo”

7. Use the words “Pornst*r” (good), and “Blender” (bad) eg: “Wha yu dis my ride 4 like a crackhows niga homes when i jus wana by a 6 inh travle fork tha hannles big u suc jupms like im da pornst*r man and u Su(k Ma B@lls like a xc pink lycra seat h0mo blender”

8. Be sure to bring Peni$ size into the mix. Remember that all XC riders have very small peni$es, that is why they can’t ride downhill. eg (real example…): “think you beta rekognize fool that you cant ride DH cus ure peni$ is to small so @!#$ break yourself chump cos you is loosin the battle!!!!!!!”

9. Remember, you cannot say “u suc” to many times. Be inventive in creating ways to include it more frequently. Additional mispellings will enhance the impact. eg “Suk u su(k up yuo suc ar$e sukka!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

10. Put it all together and mix things up a little so XC riders, and blenders won’t be able to become part of the scene. eg “Suc u dis my ride niga homes up yuo suc up u suk xc h0mo jus wana 6 inh travle fork tha hannles big u suc jupms im da pornst*r man and u Su(k Ma B@lls like xc pink lycra seat no peni$ homo blender an i am da pornst*r man so jus get of my case fool or im gonna smash u bigtime loser.”

(TRANSLATION: “Does anyone have a set of six inch travel DH forks they would like to sell?)


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