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September Sale Bikes at CDC

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September is the best time to ride. Cool nights, warm afternoons, and just enough daylight to get out there, get a good ride in, and get home just as the sun goes down. The only thing that can really make this month any sweeter is a new bike!

We’ve already built-up plenty of 2019s, and that means our remaining 2017s and 2018s are taking up a bit of our floor space. We gotta move ‘em, and you gotta check ‘em out.

We have plenty more in stock, but we’ve picked a few you’re really gonna like. Looking to get out on something new but don’t want to put a semester at a state school’s worth into a new rig? Kona has two solid options for under $1,500, and both models have some new touches added for 2018 from years past. The Kona Mahuna and Kona Blast are both rock solid options that we’ve steered plenty of parents toward for kids that might be growing out of their bikes in the next few years, but still need something that’s going to hold up to some serious shredding.

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Already got a hardtail? Get some travel. The NKOTB (that’s ‘new kid on the block’) at CDC, Norco, has a couple of options ready to roll. We’re excited to get Norco’s 2019s in, but that doesn’t mean last year’s bikes are something to scoff at. The Fluid 3 and Fluid FS2+ have limited sizes available, but if these glass slippers fit, you’re going to be pretty happy. The Fluid 3 offers NX 1x11 drivetain with 29” wheels, and is designed for techy trails and big days in the saddle. The plus means more; the FS2+ offers wider tires on a 27.5” wheel for a lower center of gravity and a sturdy footprint on the loose stuff.

There’s also one of our favorite bikes of the year. The Rocky Mountain Element is an ideal trail bike for West Michigan. It’s a cross-country bike for a new era; 120mm travel up front, well-adjust RIDE 9 suspension in the back, and a feathery-light frame to make it up the steepest climbs we’ve got around GR.

You can check out our fall pricing here on the site, see what’s in stock, and ask us anything with a phone call. What bike are YOU getting this September?

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Celebrate 30 Years Of Kona (Or Get A Head Start on 2019)

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Kona is ahead of the game in so many ways, but their knack for getting new bikes into boxes and then into our hands probably what we appreciate the most! Ignore the calendar, 2019 is here. 

We're expecting a nice big truck load of fun this week, including some of the most anticipated bikes of the season. While we'll still have 2017s and 2018s on sale through the end of the month, you may want to rub your dimes together for some of the newest and coolest bikes on offer here, there, or anywhere. 

Over the next few days, you're going to see the 2019 Kona Libre (which we waxed heavily on here), the Rove ST, the freshened-up Big Honzo, and the Hei Hei AL. But there's one bike you're really going to want to scramble to see, and that is one that's been 30 years in the making. 

Earlier this month, Kona unveiled (or, more accurately, UNLEASHED!) the 30th Birthday Bike! In order of three decades of sweet rides, they crafted a special edition of the Honzo ST with a snazzy mirror finish, 30th birthday saddle, and a special decal denoting which of the 201 frames made you ended up with. 

The bike is spec'd with SRAM NX1 bits, but you can go crazy thanks to the modular dropouts. There's something about the look of that thing that makes us want to go singlespeed. 

You can check out the Birthday Bike online, but man, you're going to want to see it in person. 

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CDC's Savor Summer Sale!

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Recently, we made a huge mistake. We looked at a calendar. 

Less than two months, it said. On September 22, the sun will pass the celestial equator, the earth will tilt on its axis, and things will get dark, chilly, and rainy. The Autumnal Equinox is now less than two months away, and with school a month off, summer is feeling like a rather fleeting thing. 

Look, we love fall, and honestly, winter isn't so bad, either. But right now, we really appreciate having a really long evening to ride after work, riding with bare arms and not even having to think about arm warmers or jackets, and with a dry summer, rain hasn't stopped or altered many of our ride plans. Sure, as we get closer to apple cider, Halloween, and night rides we'll be pumped about those things to, but they can take their timing getting here. 

We're trying to savor every ice cream cone, beach day, and hot, sunny bike ride we can this August, and we want to make sure you can, too. Starting right....NOW...you'll find up to 40% off select 2017 and 2018 bikes from Kona and Rocky Mountain. We want you to get the bike you've always dreamed of, then immediately ride the snot out of it while we have the warm temperatures and the daylight to do so. 

Of course, we're going to give you plenty of chances to ride it with us, too. Our weekly Wednesday night Funduro ride is on for August, so make sure you join us from City Built Brewing at 6:30. We're also cooking up another Dirt Church or two, as well as working out some final details for a Labor Day Sabbatical to a destination as yet undetermined. 

There are some sweet rigs on the floor right now, and you can see most of what's in stock right here. Make sure you stop by to everything built-up, as well as for the official sale price for each bike. 

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ShockWiz: Dial It In, Everywhere

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When Quarq first announced the ShockWiz, we got pretty darn excited. When we got it, we knew we'd finally been handed a tool that's been holding back a lot of riders in the area. 

Michigan has been, for three decades, the land of the hardtail. From racing to the knee-jerk reaction of, "You just don't need full suspension here", suspension bikes weren't considered a realistic bike for the region and the terrain. To be fair, a big part of that was simply the technology; bikes in the 90s and early 2000s were finicky, ambitious, poorly design, and inventive. We give designers a TON of credit for trying to solve age-old problems like pedal bob and fine-tuned adjustments with the very limited tech and materials at their disposal. The mother of all invention is necessity, but sometimes, that results in the Y-bike. 

But things have change an awful lot, especially in the past five or six years. The quality of the shocks and forks themselves have seen huge advancements in seals, designs, fluids, and weight, and how they've been integrated into modern frames designs is really impressive. Kona, for example, offers a full-suspension set-up that accounts for everything from water bottles to sag in the frame, not just the shock itself!

With that level of precision in place, adjusting your suspension means more than ever. These days, we don't see bad full suspension bike from really any manufacturer; instead, we see bikes that were built from a box, put on the floor, and pushed out the door with the new owner without every being set-up. For a new rider or even an experienced rider that may be new to full suspension, taking the time to ask questions and begin the process of setting up the suspension, even if it's just the fork, can make all the difference in the ride quality. 

Quarq's ShockWhiz takes things from basic set-up to a professional level of accuracy. We know where to get you started out at, and then it's up to YOU to ride your favorite trails and gather information that helps us set sag, rebound, and every aspect of your suspension for any trail. Yep, any trail; the ShockWiz can recommend settings for different trails! Because Luton ain't Yankee, you know what I mean?

You can schedule your Suspension Tuning right here. We recommend scheduling your rides at a time you know you will be able to put in some miles in order to get the most out of your time with the ShockWiz. Plan to hit your two favorite trails, and if there are weekly rides or a race you're planning on trying, consider riding that trail at race pace to get the best information possible. 

Once we have the information, you'll have a great starting point for your go-to rides, and can make small adjustments as necessary at different trail systems. We know a number of riders that log their fork and shock settings after each ride, including notes on what they would have changed and what they'd run next time. We've even seen riders with a small notebook in the garage to track their settings every ride! 

You don't have to go that crazy to keep track; use the ShockWiz and then let us get you dialed in from there! 

Introducing Quarq ShockWiz it is a suspension tuning system for air-sprung mountain bikes that combines high-tech hardware with an intuitive smartphone app. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Visit the provided link below for more information.

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WE WANT YOU! (Well, We Want Your Trade-Ins)

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It's a HOT time of year, and not just for Popsicle enthusiasts. We're all looking to get out and ride, and there are very few things quite as motivating as a fresh, shiny new bicycle, even if that bicycle has been previously loved. 

We really dig our trade-in program here at CDC, because unlike nearly everything else in the world it makes everybody happy. You've got a bike that's in good shape, with lots of life in, but a burning desire for something more; hey, that's good. We have plenty of that something more, and it even comes in different sizes. 

It's really simple. You can use BicycleBlueBook.com (which is available right here on our site) to get a good idea of what your bike is worth. Bring your bike into the store for a final, official valuation, and you'll have that value as a credit toward a brand new 2018 bike from Central District. 

And this June, we're making it even easier. We always offer a 3% cash discount on all bike purchases, but starting right now (which isn't even technically June!) you can take an additional 2% off when you go full Randy Moss and pay #straightcashhomie. That's right 5% off when you get a new bike with real money! 

There are some rules here. Your bike has to be cleaned up and tuned up; if we have to do loads of work on it, that value will be taken off your trade-in credit. We also ask that the bike is 2005 or newer, and sorry, we don't accept department store bikes or tandems. Tandems are great, but they take up twice as much room in a small shop as a normal bicycle. More DEETS here

As always, check out our list of in-stock bicycles and start drooling. Something you're interesting that's not on the list? Stop by, or give us a call and we'll track it down for you! 

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Dew You Know Bryan?

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  1. What was your first bike? 

    2017 Specialized Rockhopper Sport

  2. What is your perfect bike ride?

    Technical Singletrack, all day, 55°, light breeze, no gap jumps!

  3. If you could tell a customer one maintenance tip, what would it be?

    Wash your bike after every ride🤘

  4. What is your proudest accomplishment on the bike?

    Currently: finishing Marji Gesick 100 in ‘17

  5. If you could have any 2018 bike from the CDC line-up, what rig would you take home?

    Rocky Element 999

  6. What is your favorite trail to ride in West Michigan?

    Does Owasippe count? If not, Cannonsburg Ski Hill/ State Game Area. (Ed. Note: We'll count Owasippe.)

  7. What is your favorite place to ride in the WORLD?

    South Marquette, so far...

  8. What makes CDC different from other bike shops?

    Two things: Cranky Nate and Happy Nate.

  9. What’s the one tool/snack/item you won’t leave home without?

    Tailwind!

  10. What would you tell a new rider about getting into cycling?

    Ride, travel, ride, travel. What do you want to do? Gravel, road, singletrack? Buy a bike you gel with and ride the living hell out of it.

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Meet Bob, CDC's Service Slayer

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Have you met Bob? If you've been in the shop, you almost certainly have met our hardworking manager with an eye for detail and a passion for shredding. He's a BMX rider who never grew all the way up, and a suspension expert that can dial in your full suspension rig like no one else in town. 

1. What was your first bike?

Schwinn Predator

2. What is your perfect bike ride?

Either a stroll with my wife and son. Carving some turns in a bowl at the skate park or hitting some big delicious dirt jumps hidden in the woods

3. If you could tell a customer one maintenance tip, what would it be?

Check your tire pressure regularly.

4. What is your proudest accomplishment on the bike?

Still being able to ride after all the stupid things I’ve done on a bike so far. Still being able to ride a BMX bike as an old guy.

5. If you could have any 2018 bike from the CDC line-up, what rig would you take home?

Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt. GX spec with RockShox suspension.

6. What is your favorite trail to ride in West Michigan?

Maple Hill. Or Charlotte skate park. Undisclosed Dirt Jumps.

7. What is your favorite place to ride in the WORLD?

Haven’t been yet, but will be Whistler in July 2018. Ray's is amazing.

8. What makes CDC different from other bike shops?

We cater to the mountain bike/gravel crowd. We’re different than a lot of shops. We live and breathe dirt.

9. What’s the one tool/snack/item you won’t leave home without?

Shock pump.

10. What would you tell a new rider about getting into cycling?

Have fun and don’t take it too seriously.

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Book Your Tune-Up Online! The Best Thing To Hit The Internet Since Cat Videos

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People really like the Internet, and since we're thinking it might be sticking around, we're making it useful. Now, you can book your next tune-up with CDC on the world wide web. 

You're busy. And you like riding bikes. It's only natural that you'd like to know that when you drop off your bike, you're going to be at the top of the list to actually get said bike into a repair stand, tuned up, and back into your loving arms as soon as possible. We're making that easier by taking something that's famous for cats and viral videos and making it a tool in your bike repair experience. 

That's right, now you can book your service online, right here. The new system from Bike Bookings lets us be more efficient and more organized because we know what's coming in the door and when, getting us a head start on orders and giving us a better idea of what we can finish. 

Everything you need to tell us, you already know! The make and model of the bike, your contact info, and any notes about the repairs needed all make the process quick and simple. And with rainy, wet, and grimy riding on the way this spring, being quick and efficient with help make sure we get more of our customers in, out, and back on the trail. 

Don't forget, this is the last Thursday night Shifting Clinic before we take a pause over Spring Break. Learn more about shifters, cables, derailleurs, and all things drive train from Bob from 6-7pm. You can even bring your own bike and we'll show you what to pull, poke or pride for silent, smooth and buttery shifting. We'll also take a look at how to identify worn parts and how to judge when they might need to be replaced. 

Get your bike in before Melting Mann and Dirty Thirty, and you'll be riding a fresh bike for any event this spring! 

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My Kona: Wes' Kona Big Unit

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We're looking forward to spring, and some of us slightly more than others. Folks with new bikes, or bikes that have been built up as something new, are especially antsy. Wes' Kona Big Unit has him jonesing to shred, with a utilitarian build that's tough enough for a big season. 

The 2016 Kona Big Unit began as a frame and built up as a singlespeed. Heading into 2018, the bike is going to be the everyday shredder, race winner, and trail crusher for Wes. Because he travels a lot for work, the bike needs to be very easy to maintain, tough as nails, and be suited for any number of trail systems. 

The frame itself is a rarity these days, and hasn't been in production since 2016. It's made of 6069 scandium, which offers a springy steel ride but at a much lighter weight than even aluminum. The frame also spearheaded the now nearly universal sliding rear drop out that has swept the industry, making it easier to adjust your wheelbase to how you ride, as well as switch between singlespeed and gears. That choice is an easy one to make now, because it takes about 30 minutes to switch back and forth once you get the hang of doing it. 

Another big choice was to stick with the fully rigid Whisky fork. It takes off a bit of weight, sure, but with little maintenance or adjustment, it's also a bit of a time saver for a rider who admittedly puts his bikes away wet, mud, and quickly. 

That utilitarian theme extends to the drivetrain, where he's opted for 1x10 components with a tight 11-36 cassette. Putting in big miles means he'll through anywhere from four to six chains this summer, and 10 speed components add up to a lot of savings. He's gone with a SRAM GX groupset, paired with a 34t Wolf Tooth Oval chainring up front. There appears to be just a bit more room for a bigger ring, which may prove useful later in the season and in any potential gravel races. 

After a few years on ESI grips, he's back on ODI grips, a Prologo Novo saddle, Shimano SPD pedals, and RaceFace seatpost and bar. He's switching to an Easton 90mm -17 degree stem to lower the front end. 

The wheels are Stan's Crest with Schwalbe Racing Ralphs in a 2.25 front and rear. 

This bike weighs in at 23.1 pounds, not the lightest the world, but there's some weight to be shed from the crank when the need arises. 

What's your Kona story? Let us know about your bike, it's history, and why you love it and we can feature it on the site! Contact ilikefatbikes@gmail.com with your Kona photos and tall tales. 

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Bike Stuff We Love This Valentine's Day

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Valentine's Day is almost here. If you're lucky enough to love someone who loves bikes, you know that getting flowers and chocolates isn't really going to cut it. Flowers die, chocolate disappears, and disappears quickly. Instead, we've picked out a few things that'll spice up your Valentine's Day and make your bike riding better, too. 

3 Toes Threadworks Top Tube Bag. Okay, here's how you give your sweetheart some chocolote. Fill up these hand-made top tube bags with something sweet, and once you're headed out for a ride, you can fill it with snacks, your phone, or whatever you want to have close at hang. 

Level 3 Tune-Up. February is the prime-time for service specials, and we've got the Bike Love offer going strong. Take 20% off a Level 3 service, and remember, nothing says "I care" like tightening someone's hubs for them. Faster turnaround time is just an added bonus! This time of the year is a great time to get your well-ridden fat bike back in shape, or get your gravel, road, or mountain ready for spring in just a few weeks. 

A Fat Bike. Yeah, this is how you really show you love someone, or how you get out of the doghouse for getting them a crockpot for Christmas. With in-stock fat bikes up to 35% off right now and plenty of winter left to make the most of one, it's the perfect chance to go fat. Rocky Mountain and Kona make some incredible bikes, and once you throw a leg over one, you'll get it. You can see our current stock list here. 

Have a great week, a Happy Valentine's Day, and we'll see you on the trails! 

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Bike Love: 20% Off Service Special Through Valentine's Day!

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We're rolling into Februry, the month of love, passion, and Fat Bike Nationals. 

It's also a great time to get your bike tuned up. Whether you're trying to dial your winter rig back into shape after snow miles or salty commutes or getting your fair-weather bike ready for spring, February is perfect. It's a quicker turnaround, and now, we're making it even better with 20% off our Level 3 Tune Up! 

-Washing crankset, chain, cassette, front and rear derailleur in an industrial parts cleaner

-Also includes installation of new chain and cassette
-Bike wash
-True and tension wheels
-Adjust front and rear hubs
-Check and adjust Bottom bracket
-Check and adjust headset bearings
-Adjust brakes and gears
-Wipe down the frame and lube chain.
-Check and tighten all bolts
-Check and inflate tires

There's plenty to get ready for this month, too. Of course, we're really excited about USA Cycling's Fat Bike Nationals on February 10, followed by Winter Rush at Cannonsburg the following day. It's a full weekend of fat bikes, and such a cool opportunity to bring our cycling community together in the dead of winter. 

And it looks as though winter is coming back, too. After two weeks of unseasonably warm weather, there is snow in the forecast and consistently cold temperatures that should make our weekend of racing a big success, as well as our daily riding much more fun. If you're still looking to get out on a fat bike this winter, you're in luck. We have all 2017 fat bikes up to 35% off, with even a select few 2018 models on discount as well. In the snow and all summer long, you'll love your Rocky Mountain or Kona fat bike, and we've got some sweet rigs to get you out there. 

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Support The Trails with Central District Cyclery and WMMBA

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It's a new year, and we're really looking forward to so many rides, races, and unforgettable days on the bike. We're extremely fortunate to have some many different and diverse trail systems in West Michigan, and one organization to thank for it. West Michigan Mountain Biking Alliance helps build, maintain, and protect trails all over our region, and in doing so, they give us places to go out and ride year-round. 

WMMBA is our local International Mountain Bike Association chapter and works to advocate in the interest of mountain bikers at the local, state, and federal level. They also play a huge role in growing our mountain bike community through events and clinics. WMMBA's efforts are maintained primarily through membership dues and donations from people who just really love riding. 

In 2018, we've pledged to donate $15 for every mountain bike sold straight to WMMBA. We proud to join a number of local business that work to keep our trail builders building, and help to protect the unity of our mountain bike community by coming together to support the folks who support our trails. 

Any mountain, any time this season, and your new bike day will do everyone just a bit of good. 

You can help today by buying a bike, but if that's not happening soon enough, you can become a member of WMMBA and add your voice to the community. 

To learn more about WMMBA head here. Be sure to join us at Cannonsburg on Friday, February 9 to meet IMBA Executive Director and mountain bike legend Dave Wiens. 

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No Tubes, No Problems: Tubeless Tires and YOU!

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Tubeless is everywhere; from fat bikes, mountain bikes, and road bikes, fewer and fewer riders rely on tubes when they ride. Believe it or not, just how tubeless rims and tires work is a bit mystifying. Don't worry! Bob breaks it down here, and he'll show you how it works in real life at this week's tubless clinic! 

What makes a rim tubeless ready?

A tubeless ready rim will have a sidewall with a hooked design, which helps catch and hold the bead. Older rims will appear rounded without a hook shape. The shape of the rim will force the bead up snug against the outer hook, and will have a deep section in the middle to make it easier to remove.

The most reliable tubeless systems are those marked UST (Uniform System Tubeless standard). Rims and tires must meet a certified standard to use the UST label. A UST tire will have a square shaped bead to match the UST rim. Inside the tire carcass will be a butyl liner, basically inner tube material formed into the inside carcass of the tire body. This extra material does make the tire heavier compared to non-UST tires.

UST rims will have either no nipple holes in the rim tire bed, or these holes will be completely sealed. The UST rim bead seat is designed to accept and hold the beads of the UST tires. UST tires can be used on a UST rim without tire sealants. The most common brand to use UST rims/tires is Mavic.

You must use a tubeless ready/UST tire and rim for the appropriate seal.

Best tubeless rim tape?

The best rim tapes will vary from person to person. In the end, I think that any company that produces specific tubeless rim tape will work just fine. I prefer a more pliable tape when setting up a new wheel. My preferred tape isn’t actually tape at all. I love using the Effetto Mariposa Caffelatex rim strip. Made using a proprietary polymer blend, Caffélatex Strip has very high mechanical strength and resistance to punctures. It’s also very stable from a chemical standpoint and cannot be damaged by water or sealant. They are also reuseable. Because they have don’t have a memory, changing the strips from different wheels have very little effect on the sealing properties. This method is by far my choice when setting up fat bike wheels. Because of the exposed spoke nipples, using tubeless tape can be very tricky to get a proper seal. With the Caffelatex strips, they set flush to the rim with very few imperfections. If I had to use tape, I’d either use the Velocity tape or Stans. The Stan’s tape is slightly more pliable than the Velocity, to help reduce creasing in the tape. However, I don’t feel as the Stan’s tape holds up as well as the Velocity tape.

Tubeless tire choices?

Pretty much every company in the bicycle tire industry offers some sort of tubeless tire. In my experiences, if a company makes a tubeless specific rim and tire, using the same brand for both applications is ideal. Obviously, you can mix and match but the easiest tubeless setups are when I use the same company for rim and tire choices. Mavic’s UST system, in my opinion, is the least problematic, and the easiest to set up.

A very useful tip when setting up and new tire to a rim is to unpackage the tire and lay it flat on the floor for a few hours to let the tire take shape. New folding tires can be a pain to set up, because of the way they’re packaged.

Tubeless sealant?

There are a ton of sealant options. I really like the Orange Seal, but they do have a tendency to clog the valve stems far more often than other sealants. Orange Seal Sealant consists of multiple sizes and shapes of solid particles or what they call "nanites". When a puncture occurs, the nanites quickly seal the hole keeping the air in the tire and you rolling down the trail or road. They mix the nanites with their proprietary latex sealant to co-exist with the nanites and prevent added clotting.

The Stan’s sealant (preferrably the Extreme sealant) works well for most conditions. Instead of the “nanites” Stan’s uses something more similar to fine grit sand. I think that it dries up more quickly than other companies. I also feel that I have to add a decent amount more during the initial set up than other brands.

Our preferred sealant here is the Serfas Tire Medic sealant. It works very similarly to Orange Seal and Stan’s, the one exception is that the clotting particle is more similar to tiny fibers.

Tubeless valve stem?

There are a billion different companies making tubeless valve stems. I’ve not found any that really work better than others. The only exception that I’ve found is the Mavic UST valves when used with the Mavic rims. Velocity valve stems work very well as long as the inner channel of the rim allows for proper fitment. DON’T FORGET TO TIGHTEN THE LOCKNUT!

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Riding into the New Year! with Courtney Joesel

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We're way into 2018, and it's time to look up and look ahead to what we want to do this year. Courtney took a look at what has her motivated to ride, improve, and be happier this season, and her thoughts might jump start your ambitions! 

Now that the holiday season has passed and I am able to take a breath from the stress, it is time to start getting into my new routine.  I made a decision this past November/December, I was going to focus on getting my body healthy and honing in on some of my mountain biking skills.  I took time to look back at my riding season last year.  What did I like about it? What did I not like about it? What do I want to accomplish with my riding this coming year?   So let's explore….

What did I like about my riding season last year? I loved that amazing places I was able to travel to and the amazing people I was able to meet.  My goal last year was to just ride and figure out what the definition of fun would be for each ride because that changes constantly. Sometimes I just wanted to be outdoors and try to figure out the different trees in the trail, just laugh and talk with another rider cruising around, or maybe it was just to feel like bike moving below me as I tried to corner in different ways, or maybe it was pushing my self up some climbs to see if I could beat my previous time.  Fun was different for every ride.

What did I not like about my season last year? I let fear take over.  The thing I say over and over again about what mountain biking does for me is that it pushes me out of my comfort zone.  Well, I seemed to lose sight of that a bit this past year.  Maybe it was because I was stressed in lots of other places in my life and I needed that comfort zone….who knows.  I found myself avoiding things that I had done before that had been no big deal, but I just felt scared. I let excuses be my MO. 

What do I want to accomplish with my riding this coming year? Finding that confidence and work on my bike handling skills.  That is a pretty loaded goal.  But so what do I think that will look like for me? I want to be able to go on a ride and be comfortable with the idea that I am capable and that I do belong there.  I want to be able to feel like the bike is also an extension of my body and I can understand more of what I am feeling and manipulate it.  I feel like for me this year, those to concepts go hand in hand.  To understand my body and bike handling will hopefully increase my confidence that I can push myself.  

Now it’s time to ask yourself those same questions:  What did I like about it? What did I not like about it? What do I want to accomplish with my riding this coming year?  

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Santa Forgot The Good Stuff? We've Got A Sale To Make It Okay

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Look, Santa is a busy guy. He can't be perfect all the time, and he may have lost your new fat bike, new helmet, or other gear on his mad dash around the globe. Don't begrudge the lucky kid who ended up with your dream present; go get it yourself. 

We're making that a little easier. This week, we're picking up where Santa left with 20% off all fat bike accessories. From hats to pogies, boots to gloves, get what you didn't get on Christmas so you're ready for a full winter of outdoor fun. 

But, there's more. We have just a few 2017 Rocky Mountain Suzi Qs that need to get out the door. The A30 is a SRAM NX set-up with Maxxis tires with a climb-anything 11-42 cassette. It's the perfect drivetrain for creeping and crawling up steep and snowy trails, exploring new places like Big M or the Winter Sports Singletrack, and riding all year long! 

Need something a bit more spicy? There's a Shimano flavor Suzi Q as well, the A50! All sorts of XT bits, plus an 11-46t cassette with a 28t crankset that's ideal for backwoods exploring. It also boasts a SMOOTHWALL carbon fork that takes off just a bit of weight to keep your rig nimble and snappy. 

The Suzi Q offers big floatation without the wide stance of other fat bikes. The narrower Q factor makes it feel more like your normal mountain bike; it's more traditional, comfortable, and efficient. It's an especially good option if you plan to ride it year-round, or for big rides where comfort becomes more and more of a factor as the miles add up. 

That's 30% off two killer fat bikes that will get you outside and off Watopia a bit this winter. We've got the full spec sheet of both Suzis below to drool over. 

Give Santa a break. Grab what you need this winter and kick off 2018 with a memorable ride. Questions? Give us a call, or stop by and swing a leg over any of our fat bikes, including great options from Fatback and Kona. 

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Merry Christmas from CDC!

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We're really thankful for another great year in Grand Rapids, slinging bikes and being a part of an incredible community of cyclists and human beings. 

This is the time of the season where we look back and reflect on another great spring, summer, and fall. We've enjoyed killer riding this year, and with winter in full swing, it's going to be an exciting winter to get us rolling into 2018. 

First, we want to wish anyone and everyone taking on the Festive 500. Rapha and Strava have partnered again to promote this annual challenge, with riders attempting to put in 500km between Christmas Eve and New Year's Day. In July, it's not too tough. Between work, the holidays, and frigid temperatures, it's a monumental task in Michigan. On Instagram and Twitter, watch the #Festive500  to see riders from all over the world stacking up the miles any way they can...including by fat bike here in West Michigan! 

Make sure you take a look at our freshly updated list of events, too! Plan to join us for some fat bike racing, dirt jumping in Louisville, and some memorable trips north between January and July. Which event are you looking forward to the most this winter and spring? Is there anything we need to add to our busy calendar?

Heading into Christmas and New Year's Eve, we'll be closed Sunday and Monday for Christmas Eve and Christmas, as well as for NYE and New Year's Day. Our winter hours are:

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday 10-6
Thursday 10-7
Friday 10-6
Saturday 10-3
Sunday Closed

Stop by, say hello, and let us make sure your Christmas shopping is all set before Sunday! 

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Don't Be A Randy: Dress Right For Winter Riding

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It's winter. For those looking to get outside, cold weather riding is not nearly as masochistic as it's often portrayed by cycling publications or your buddies who'd rather stay on the couch. This season, mix in outdoor rides the right way with just a few easy tips that the more experienced cyclist already knows. 

Of course, the gear is half the battle. Winter riding apparel can get expensive, but there are a few pieces that are truly worth investing in, but that might change from person to person. Stop and think about how and what gets cold on you. For example, I've got no trouble with my feet; wearing winter riding boots with normal socks is almost too much, and I've ridden with normal MTB shoes and covers in temperatures well below freezing. My hands, however, are cold all the time. They go purple in late September and don't look return to a normal skin tone until May. For me, investing in good heavy gloves, especially lobster-style, was the best money I've spent for riding in the cold. 

Before you get dressed, think of where you're riding. If you're hitting frozen gravel roads, you may want to focus on wind-proof gear for higher-speeds and a great wind chill factor. A thinner rain jacket might actually be a great idea, just remember that it isn't going to breathe like normal material. It's always a good idea to avoid hills in cold weather. Climbing might be too hot, but you're going to freeze on the downhill. Flat gravel roads are ideal because you can control your effort and, in effect, your heat. 

More folks fat bike this time of year, and that's a very different thing to dress for. Slower speeds (except for Nate, he's so fast all the time) mean wind chill is rarely a factor, and you'll need jackets that breathe to stay comfortable. Try different clothes to see what works best for you at different temperatures and different efforts. If your fast friends are going, you can probably wear less as you'll be riding harder. If your buddy is making his first fat bike attempt ever, maybe dress a bit warmer so you stay comfortable while cruising or stopping. A fleece-lined jacket or long-sleeve jersey, a thermal vest, a neck gaitor, or a mix of all three should cover you down until the most frigid days. 

No matter what outer jacket you pick, having the right base layer can make a big difference. Your base layer helps trap heat while also getting sweat off your skin. Having a breathable jacket is useless if you're wearing your Allendale High School Footbal cotton t-shirt underneath; cotton will soak up your sweat, and we promise that at some point you will go slow enough to get cold and then you'll be absolutely frozen. 

When in doubt, bring more. For big rides, I bring a second long sleeve jersey and a second pair of gloves in my frame bag. It's overkill nine times out of ten, but for that one time you or a friend really needs something dry or warm, it's like having a team car following you deep in the woods at just the right time. It's always great to keep a few snacks, plenty of CO2, a multi-tool, even a spare battery for your light in there, just in case. 

Maybe the biggest thing to remember when you head out is not to over do it. You're going to be exercising; you don't need to look like a 'tick about to pop'. Wear what you'd wear to run, ski, or hike, then wear a helmet. Vests, thin jackets, and other light pieces that are easy to peel off and pack away can be great to have, especially if you're starting early and the temperature is expected to rise while you're out there. 

When you've got the right stuff and you know how to wear it, riding all winter long isn't a huge deal. You'll find out what works for you in what temperatures and be able to adjust to any weather. In truth, the hardest part of winter riding is just getting yourself to step out the door; after ten minutes, you won't even be thinking about it! 

SAMPLE Clothing List. Perfect for a steady two-hour ride at 21 degrees in the woods. 

Socks: Normal
Boots: Lake MXZ303
Bibs: Normal
Pants: Louis Garneau Baggies
Base Layer: Pearl Izumi Thermal
Jersey: Pearl izumi Long Sleeve Fleece
Jacket: None
Vest: Castelli Thermal
Neck Gaitor: Castelli or Buff
Head: Same
Gloves: Pearl Izumi Lobster
 

 

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All I Want For Christmas Are These Half Dozen Things: A CDC Christmas List

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It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas, and that means our list of cycling needs and wants gets a little longer...and a little bit more visible to ensure they all get checked off the list. Here's our in-house blogger/cyclist/bike nerd, Cody Sovis, wish list for December. 

1. Kona Rove NRB DL. It may not be completely realistic to stick a new bike right at the top of the list, but I'm going to do it anyway. The Kona Rove NRB DL makes this list for a couple of reasons. First, I really do think this bike is the best value out there right now; for $2k, you've got an all-day road bike that, with another wheelset, can hop in a crit or do 100 miles. The stock wheels are 650b do-anythings that cover your bases for gravel, pavement, and a splash of trail. The WTB Horizons might be perfect for the new 100 mile gravel races in West Michigan next spring, namely Lowell's 100 mile option and the Psycho Killer and Barry-Roubaix. 

Secondly, this whole line up of bikes just makes more sense for how we ride today. There aren't many road or crit races left, and odds are that you already have a bike for those. I really can't imagine buying a drop bar bike that doesn't fit at least 40c tires on 700c wheels, or 2.1" tires on 650b MTB wheels. For the gravel, adventure, commute and majority of riding, having the flexibility to swap between two sets of wheels and invest more in a single bike with a nicer drive train simply makes sense. That's why I'd secretly love to nab the steel 'bling ship' version of the Rove, the LTD

2. WTB Byway 47c. Right along with the Kona Rove, the Byway is a tire that blurs a lot of lines. Mounted to 650b wheels, it's a slick tire with just enough bite to be a capable and trusty rubber for tying in more trails to your normal gravel route. Especially for folks who love to ride to the ride, it's fast on the pavement and still a blast to toss around at Cannonsburg or other singletrack systems that aren't too rocky. 

3. Serfas TSL-1200. Alright, full disclosure, I already have one of these. It's on here because it's been one of the best investments I've made for night riding, especially during cold and snowy fat bike rides. The external battery packs last longer than a single unit light/battery combo not just because they have more juice; being able to keep that battery warm in a frame bag or jersey pocket makes a huge difference. I leave my light on the bars and the pack in the frame bag almost all season, just grabbing the pack to charge up. Even on the coldest days, I can get 1.5-2 hours or two rides on a single charge at the second highest setting. 

That external pack also has some other good uses. It has a USB port, so you can charge your bike computer, phone, even your camera. I use it for traveling a lot, especially to bike races where I may not be in my car before, during or after the race and want to keep my phone with me. For big rides, such as my five hour epics during the #Festive500 during the holidays, I'll usually plug my phone in to make sure I can listen to my tune and make an emergency call for a ride home, should worst come to worst. 

3. Winter Rush Registration. This would be a great thing to unwrap! Get your fat bike friend all signed up for a fat bike race this winter and keep them motivated to put some miles in even in some colder weather. There are dozens of fat bike races and rides all over the state, and even across the Midwest with the Great Lakes Fat Bike Series. Of course, we're a bit partial to Winter Rush, which will include a race at Big M on January 13, plus the USA Cycling Fat Bike National Championship at Cannonsburg in February. 

4. Velocity Aileron US Build. You can never, ever, ever have too many wheels. I've had a ton of luck with the Velocity Ailerons, but I've never gotten my mitts on a USA build. It's about as American as you can get, with Aileron rims laced up to Industry 9 hubs. Tough, light, and they set-up tubeless exceptionally well. 

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5. Snacks. Seriously. I go through a ton of Hammer Fizz in a week, and nothing would jingle my bells like getting a pack of grape Fizz that would have be set for a few months. Having a few gels, bars, or bloks on hand are always nice, and if you've got a cyclist with a special favorite, grab 'em a box. You'll totally make their day. 

6. A Get Out Of Jail Free Card. This one doesn't cost you a dime. Give your cycling spouse or pal one coupon to let them skip something in favor of a ride. It could be dinner with the in-laws, watching a romantic comedy, or a visit to your Aunt Mertyle's. Here's the thing about this card, though; you don't get to hang it over their heads after they use it! 

7. A Tune-Up. Especially once the snow flies, it's a great time to get your road, gravel or mountain bike in the shop for a well-deserved overhaul. CDC is offering 20% off all parts and labor, so if you book your big tune now with a gift card in that amount, it'll still be a surprise under the tree that will make them happy all spring long. 

What are you hoping for this Christmas? Let us know in the comments and we'll make sure we get it in stock! 

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Welcome Back, Bob!

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Greetings!

I’m Bob.

I started out riding bikes like most kids.  At first just around my neighborhood as a mode of transportation. I grew up in the small town of Allendale where there isn’t much to do. To entertain myself I started making jumps in my parents’ driveway and yard. It wasn’t until I was fifteen when I started getting hooked on BMX bikes. A friend from school raced at the old BMX track in Wyoming and around that time started making bigger jumps. Every day after school, we’d get together and ride our bikes until it was too dark to see. 

My first bike shop job was in 1998 where I started at Village Bike Shop. I was fresh meat and would do the jobs that included tasks no one else wanted to, but I also did new bike assembly and sales. 

I eventually moved to Cycle Therapy in the Standale area.   It was there that I started to really get involved with more of the service side of bicycles.  I learned a ton from Scott, and many of the things I learned there are still necessary for the repairs I do today.

In late 2011, I heard that Nate was going to open a shop in the downtown area, and I knew that I wanted to be a part of it. We got together and figured out a plan. The shop opened in February of 2012 and provided service to the downtown Grand Rapids area.  In February 2013 we parted ways on good terms.

I started at Alger Bikes in March of 2013 where I became the service manager. Since bikes were getting more and more technologically advanced, I decided I wanted to learn to do everything myself. To me, bikes should not have to be sent out to have work done when services can be done locally.

In January 2015, I attended a week long, intense schooling at SRAM Technical University in Colorado Springs, CO. It was there that I earned certification in the service of all SRAM, AVID, and RockShox parts. I now have the knowledge to diagnose, overhaul, and tune all of their components. Repairs can now be completed in-house which not only saves time on service work, but also makes it so I am able to bond with customers and make sure their bikes are working perfectly.

I also developed a great understanding of the Lefty fork. I pushed for several years to become a Lefty service center. Although the service center never came to fruition, we were able to service all our customer’s forks in-house.

After nearly 5 years, I’m back at Central District Cyclery, which is where I met my wonderful wife Emily in 2012. We got married in 2014 and reside in the Midtown neighborhood of Grand Rapids with our son, Miles, and our two insane dogs, Frank and Ramona. We all love riding bikes as a family, especially at our favorite vacation spot — the Leelanau Peninsula. 

I love riding bikes and want others to enjoy it as well.  I primarily ride BMX and commute to work, with some single track thrown in there for fun. I started riding DJ bikes a little over a year ago and having been having a lot of fun doing that, when I’m not crashing super hard.

It is because of this love and knowledge for bicycles that I treat every repair as if it were my own.  I assure you that the quality of work that comes out Central District Cyclery is one of the best, and I aspire to make it the destination of service work in the Grand Rapids area.

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Thanksgiving Week at Central District Cyclery

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Thanksgiving is one of the best holidays because it gives you all morning to ride and work up an appetite. We're very thankful for every single ride we get to enjoy, and every single customer that has supported us since we opened. It's been an incredible year, and we are grateful for each and every one of you. 

We'll be closed Thursday to eat and stay closed Friday to ride it off. Spending time with friends and family is always a treat, and having both days to enjoy are really a treat. We hope you can skip the lines and sales and do something outside. Take a new friend or family member biking! Go for a wintry hike. Whatever you love to do, share it with someone special. If you're lucky enough to have the day off, make sure you do spend it wisely. 

Don't worry, we've got you start on holiday shopping figured out. The crew will be back in action on Small Business Saturday from 10a-5p. And we're making it worth your while to step away from the leftovers and swing by. We're really doing you a favor and letting someone else eat that last slice of pie. 

This Saturday, support local and shop our special of the day. Everything in the store is 10%! Even our "Clearance Conifer", which is already stacked up with clearance items and special deals. Whatever a sale item is listed at, take an additional 10% off, this Saturday only! 

Not sure what to grab that cyclist of yours? That 10% is good for gift cards, too; your $100 gift card is just $90! 

If we don't see you before Thursday, have a fun, safe, and delicious Thanksgiving and a great turkey-burner of a ride after. We appreciate all of our Grand Rapids cycling community, and we can't wait for more adventures. 

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