Given my fascination with cargo bikes, I had to ask Jimmy over at Luckyduck in Oakland, CA about that funky-looking cargo bike parked in front of the shop. An 80’s Cinelli Ottomila mountain bike with a giant cargo container on top of a little front wheel. How could this be?
The answer is the Clydesdale fork from Crust Bikes, a google-worthy outfit out of Belmar, New Jersey. Crust makes frames, forks, stems, and more! Some even US-made. The Clydesdale fork is designed to turn your old non-suspension-corrected MTB or tourer into a solid cargo hauler. It’s built over a 20” wheel for a low center of gravity, to make hauling easy.
The basic platform is ready for whatever you want to put on it. There are plenty of braze-ons to screw things into to the top of the platform so you could mount a box or just a flat board if that suits your needs. There are also mounts for both disk and cantilever brakes, as well as fenders.
What will you need? A 20” wheel with a 9mm axle and a bike. The Clydesdale fork is designed for a 400mm (15 ¾”) crown-to-axle height and a 72˚ head angle. If your bike is designed around those numbers, which are pretty common, then you will have achieved perfection and the rack will ride level. If your axle-crown is higher or lower, your frame angles will change by about one degree for every 10mm of height. This is all described in detail on the website and slight variations are not the end of the world. Other stats include a 340mm steerer tube and availability in both 1″ and 1 1/8″ steerer tubes, both threadless. The 1″ model includes a shim for using 1 1/8″ threadless stems, and comes with a Cane Creek 40 headset.
Jimmy does a lot of the shopping for the shop and has had up to 70 lbs on there, including “The Dog”. Crust doesn’t list a weight limit but I am seeing a picture of a human riding on one, what fun! A clean and simple way to create a cargo bike, do check them out. $245 for the 1 1/8” model. $265 for the 1”.
6/22/18 Correction: Only the 1″ model comes with a Cane Creek 40 headsetTweet Print
One has to appreciate a good bike shop. Especially one that builds the community around itself. These days it’s a key to survival in this disrupted economy we live in. Luckyduck has been open since August of 2016, and successful enough that the owners are just starting to scale back from the 16-hour workdays it took to get going. Luckyduck brings bikes, food, beer and community to downtown Oakland. I’ve stopped in on several occasions for just those items.
For starters, the sandwiches are awesome. Living in the Beast known as East Bay, there’s a lot of great bakeries to spoil you, so Luckyduck starts with some awesome bread, from Firebrand. Everything after that is gravy. And if you’re up in the morning there’s breakfast as well. Sealing the deal is beer. Great beer from local breweries. Mostly local, delivered by the brewery. All California. Keep it local. ‘Nuff said.
Partners Jimmy Ryan And Aaron Wacks curate the shop. The food menu is tight. And so is the bike selection. Each bike is special. Some are bikes that they have come across as bike geeks. Some are on consignment as well. Everything from a vintage Colnago to a sweet 80’s Rockhopper converted for the streets and priced at $316. Or maybe you’re into the Kona Kilauea bikepacking bike or the Winters show frame.
The shop section is simple and tidy. A well-curated selection of accessories fulfills your most important needs. Helmets, bags from Inside Line, Ruth Works, and Road Runner. I hate the word “Artisinal” but there ya go. Everything in its right place, like Radiohead says.
In the end, it’s all about community. The Saturday ride is casual and the yoga classes will keep you limber. There’s bands, art on the walls, and friendly faces. Luckyduck is surely not the first bike shop to espouse this mission, but it does sum things up in a well-said fasion:
“Luckyduck grew from our desire to make riding a bike accessible to everyone. To us, this means expert bicycle service housed in the positive and relaxed vibes of our neighborhood coffee shop and cafe. No pretension or pressure. Just genuine human connection in the name of increasing bicycle ridership throughout the bay.”
Wow these people “Get it”
Tuesday to Saturday 8am to 7pm
Words by Morgan Fletcher
Morgan Fletcher lives in Oakland, California, in the hills above the city. He works in San Francisco’s Financial District, as a manager at a software company. The 46-year-old Philadelphia native is in the office about eight hours a day, but he’s in front of a computer, or a mobile phone, working the shoulder hours of the day. It’s probably a nine-hour day, on average. His daily commute is a phone-free, laptop-free zone. So is the ferry. —Ed.
When I leave the house for work is often impacted by other duties, as father and husband. I’m a parent to two teenagers, and my wife works. In my perfect bike commuting day, I’m up at 6 a.m., on the bike at 7:30 a.m., down the hill eight miles and 1,000 feet to the Jack London Ferry Terminal. I’ll ride the ferry with my friends to the San Francisco Ferry Building, arriving around 8:45 a.m., and get to the office by 9 a.m. My office is a short distance from the Ferry Building, less than a mile, but traffic and architecture in that part of San Francisco are dense, so it does feel like a bit of a journey. I’ll step away from my desk at 5:15 p.m. After socializing on the ferry—I always sit outside, and I always see some of the same friendly faces—I’ll be at Jack London Ferry Terminal by about 6:20 p.m. From there it’s anywhere from 50 minutes to an hour and 20 minutes home, depending on whether I go the short or long ways. My morning commute takes me through narrow, hill-side, quiet roads down to big, busy streets, and the pattern is reversed in the evening. I have some grass and dirt options, to escape the asphalt, and my route to the ferry in the morning is creative.
The primary challenge of bicycle commuting—like anywhere else—is safety. The Bay Area has a very dense population, separated from most destinations by water. Everyone is in a hurry at commute time, distracted and late and completely self-centered. This all makes sense. No one’s looking out for the other commuters, and most of the cars have a single occupant and you, whoever you are, are in the way. As a bicycle commuter with over thirty years of experience riding to school and then work, I’ve developed a sense for how to safely navigate my commute. I’m a law-abider. It’s rare that I’m so late for work or home as to feel the need to not stop at a stop sign or red light.
The secondary challenge is darkness. I do not like bike commuting as much during the winter, and I hate Daylight Savings Time. I spend a lot of time cold, dark and wet on my bike, in the winter. “Real bike commuters” keep riding through the winter. Bleh.
The benefits of commuting are so many. I get great exercise, I get to train for my favorite activity, which is bicycling! I have time away from screens, grumpiness, drama and doubt, where my body and brain are energized and moving with a purpose, so that my thoughts can flow for tens of minutes at a time uninterrupted, and I can think and feel the wind on my face.
I’m burning the good food I ate, and not the dollars in my wallet, and I’m not making my expensive car an even more depreciated asset when I’m bike commuting.
I’m not frustrated in traffic, but flowing through two great, big cities efficiently and with style while I commute. I see things that others might not see, moving at just the right speed, with no walls around me.
I get to take a boat across the most beautiful bay, below bridges and among container ships, and I get to talk and laugh with friends while I’m doing it. I sometimes take the BART train; the ferry is vastly superior. I arrive at my destination happier and more refreshed than when I left. The sunsets are incredible.
Since I’ve never been a car commuter, I tend to be very economical with my bike spend, while at the same time being an absolute bike snob. I love bikes, and I’m always one bike away from having the right set of bikes. I buy parts used, do my own mechanical work, and take advantage of deals when available. We still drive enough, with kid transport and my wife’s commute, that I’m keenly aware of what a car costs to maintain. I’d guess I’m ahead by maybe $5,000 – $7,000 a year. Hard to say.
I’m always happy to have company, but there are very few people with whom I can share the bulk of my commute. I roll out from the ferry in the evening with a group of friends, and also some strangers. This “critical mass” of three to five riders provides some safety we wouldn’t have as single riders, especially when it’s dark and we have lights on. This first mile from the ferry is a good time for conversation, providing we’re paying full attention to the cars, pedestrians and bikes around us. Sometimes I’ll run into a friend on the longer climbs and the longer ways home, and we’ll ride together. I like the time alone on the bike.
I’ve hit deer twice on my bike commute home. Both times were at night. The first time, I stayed upright and the deer went flying. The second time I wasn’t so lucky, and we both crashed hard.
Photos by Rocky Arroyo / PedalFest
Each year PedalFest rolls into Jack London Square in Oakland, California, to celebrate cycling, family, music and more. There are rides, demos, live music, food and even the Whiskeydrome, a 30-foot banked velodrome for stunt riding.
Check out our gallery from photographer Rocky Arroyo. Click on the magnifying glass at the bottom right to see the photos full-size.
PedalFest is a epic, free celebration of all things bicycle in Jack London Square. No matter what type of cyclists you are, you’re sure to find something fun, including a chance to meet some of the most legendary American cyclists.Tweet Print