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Retro on Steroids
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have been uploading a lot of pics here because it means I don't have to pay for the bandwidth. I have spent the last few years working on a personal website that covers my mountain bike activities from the '70s to around 1990 when I stopped making my living from the bike industry. If you are into "retro" mountain biking, you can't go any firther upstream than what is on my site.

Gary Fisher and I were roommates from 1971 to about 1976, and in 1979 we partnered up with Tom Ritchey to start a business which we called "Mountain Bikes." That was our brand name for our single product and the name of our company, since then co-opted to describe all modern off-road bikes.

Here is the link to my site. Because I have so much material I have spread it out over a lot of other pages, so you should follow the links on this page to see the rest of it.
 

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Website

I love your website Charlie. I actually found it a while back by googling. I dig all the old repack posters and stuff. The ride pics are cool too? Thanks for starting all this.
Scotty
 

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CK, great web site. I have spent many hours reading on your site. I'm glad that you've documented so much of the history, and written down your recollection of events. For those of us that love learning the history of the sport, sites like yours and books like the one by Frank Berto, are great insights into events where we wish we had been present.

Keep up the great work!
 

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Repack Rider said:
I have been uploading a lot of pics here because it means I don't have to pay for the bandwidth. I have spent the last few years working on a personal website that covers my mountain bike activities from the '70s to around 1990 when I stopped making my living from the bike industry. If you are into "retro" mountain biking, you can't go any firther upstream than what is on my site.

Gary Fisher and I were roommates from 1971 to about 1976, and in 1979 we partnered up with Tom Ritchey to start a business which we called "Mountain Bikes." That was our brand name for our single product and the name of our company, since then co-opted to describe all modern off-road bikes.

Here is the link to my site. Because I have so much material I have spread it out over a lot of other pages, so you should follow the links on this page to see the rest of it.

Here are a couple of samples. The "Mountain Bikes" ad is our first ever, and ran in a BMX magazine in February, 1980.
Very, very cool. Nice job and thanks for all you've done!
 

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clueless
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thank you ck,

laffeaux said:
CK, great web site. I have spent many hours reading on your site. I'm glad that you've documented so much of the history, and written down your recollection of events. For those of us that love learning the history of the sport, sites like yours and books like the one by Frank Berto, are great insights into events where we wish we had been present.

Keep up the great work!
my words, but better english :D thx eric





not mine, but in my reach.

ciao
flo
 

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CK, your site has been on my favorites list for a long time. It was great to see you with the old gang at the Davis bicycle conference. You guys had lots of cool stories and insight on the birth of this sport, I hope they do it again next year :cool:
 

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Retro on Steroids
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Here are the photos

I bungled the upload that was supposed to accompany the first post in this thread. I'll try again. These are photos from my archives.

The first is our first printed ad, which ran in a BMX magazine in February 1980.

Who's the kid? Gary Fisher, racing cyclocross in 1967.

The three gentlemen posed with their bikes are Monte Ward, Jim Sullivan and Tim Rysdale, the "Ritchey Wrecking Crew" taking the first three places in the 1981Coyote Derby. In 1981 The Ritchey Mountain Bike was by far the most advanced off-roader on the market and it was unlikely you could beat the owner of one on anything else. The mass-produced Stumpjumper was six months away from its first appearance on the market. For the first five years of mountain biking every bike that came onto the market was as nearly an exact copy of this one that anyone else could build. Even though competitive mountain biking has moved past it, this simple design is now the workhorse bike of the world.

And last, Cindy, the most awesome mountain bike babe who ever turned a pedal.
 

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Repack Rider said:
I bungled the upload that was supposed to accompany the first post in this thread. I'll try again. These are photos from my archives.

The first is our first printed ad, which ran in a BMX magazine in February 1980.

Who's the kid? Gary Fisher, racing cyclocross in 1967.

The three gentlemen posed with their bikes are Monte Ward, Jim Sullivan and Tim Rysdale, the "Ritchey Wrecking Crew" taking the first three places in the 1981Coyote Derby. In 1981 The Ritchey Mountain Bike was by far the most advanced off-roader on the market and it was unlikely you could beat the owner of one on anything else. The mass-produced Stumpjumper was six months away from its first appearance on the market. For the first five years of mountain biking every bike that came onto the market was as nearly an exact copy of this one that anyone else could build. Even though competitive mountain biking has moved past it, this simple design is now the workhorse bike of the world.

And last, Cindy, the most awesome mountain bike babe who ever turned a pedal.
Wow. Amazing stuff CK. Thanks for sharin.
 

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Retro on Steroids
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Your bike looks to me like 1982 or early 1983. The fork is Tange and the gruppo is an actual gruppo. The Mitsuboshi "Cruiser Mit" tires were the first light tires on the market, but by the time this bike came out there were good dirt tires available, starting with the original StumpJumper tire.
 

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Schipperkes are cool.
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I must say that web site takes me back, love it.
On another note, your sister-I think, Casey, was in the shop, Absolute Bikes in Salida Colorado, a few months ago. She moved to Alma/Fairplay about 1+ hours away. We got talking about the early days and she was surprised that Joe Murray is still looking like he did back in 1984.

Scoty
 

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Classic!

I never would have recognized Fisher. He's so young!

I know Sully through his advocacy work. I'd never have recognized him either. I guess the old-timers were all young once. ;)

Great pics!!!!
 

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Retro on Steroids
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Maybe I'll take you up on that

abmtnbkr said:
If we ever meet, the beers are on me.
So, uh, where do you live?

Since I'm posting, here's a pic. The guy on the left is Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead. The guy in the middle is me. The other three people are Deadheads that we ran into on a ride and they had to get a picture because their friends were never going to believe them.
 

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Yes, excellent site! I spent a lot of time there a while back, when I stumbled across it. It's great to see all the history there.
Beers are on me if you're ever in cajun country (Lafayette, LA)!.
Serge
Repack Rider said:
I have been uploading a lot of pics here because it means I don't have to pay for the bandwidth. I have spent the last few years working on a personal website that covers my mountain bike activities from the '70s to around 1990 when I stopped making my living from the bike industry. If you are into "retro" mountain biking, you can't go any firther upstream than what is on my site.

Gary Fisher and I were roommates from 1971 to about 1976, and in 1979 we partnered up with Tom Ritchey to start a business which we called "Mountain Bikes." That was our brand name for our single product and the name of our company, since then co-opted to describe all modern off-road bikes.

Here is the link to my site. Because I have so much material I have spread it out over a lot of other pages, so you should follow the links on this page to see the rest of it.
 

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Repack Rider said:
I have been uploading a lot of pics here because it means I don't have to pay for the bandwidth. I have spent the last few years working on a personal website that covers my mountain bike activities from the '70s to around 1990 when I stopped making my living from the bike industry. If you are into "retro" mountain biking, you can't go any firther upstream than what is on my site.

Gary Fisher and I were roommates from 1971 to about 1976, and in 1979 we partnered up with Tom Ritchey to start a business which we called "Mountain Bikes." That was our brand name for our single product and the name of our company, since then co-opted to describe all modern off-road bikes.

Here is the link to my site. Because I have so much material I have spread it out over a lot of other pages, so you should follow the links on this page to see the rest of it.
Hi CK. Yep, you've long had the best site on the net for vintage mtb content. Now I'll have to find another secret source to glean all my info from so I sound like I know what I'm talking about... Keep up the good work. I think it's safe to say you've found your audience. I love seeing all those photos you took. Glad someone had a sense of preservation!
Pete
 

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I too have had your site maked for quite some time. Very cool stuff - thanks! That photo of Jim Sullivan sure also looks an awful lot like Bob Hadley. But my mind may be playing tricks on me. I remember Sully (maybe there are two Jim Sullivans) having sandy colored hair.
 

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Retro on Steroids
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
My bad

ssmike said:
I too have had your site maked for quite some time. Very cool stuff - thanks! That photo of Jim Sullivan sure also looks an awful lot like Bob Hadley. But my mind may be playing tricks on me. I remember Sully (maybe there are two Jim Sullivans) having sandy colored hair.
My big bad. The guy in the photo is Jim SAMUELSON. Sully's name just came to my fingertips when I wrote it. Glad you guys caught it.

I have a story about Sully the porcine valve guy. When he became National vet champ in 1990 I introduced myself, because I was getting paid by Bicycling to write about the event. He told me that we had met, when he was 16 years old and walking his bike past a stage at Stanford University where a rock band was playing. The roadie seemed to know a lot about bikes, and they talked for a while. Later on we both turned out to be the same people. Much later, like 20 years. He remembered the incident. I didn't.

I enlarged and cropped the Fat Tire Flyer Tomac pic that is the earliest known photo of him in a mountain bike race. I enlarged his bike so you guys could inspect it. I'll do a higher res scan next time I visit the archives (which are not kept in my house).
 

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Retro on Steroids
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Some experimental bikes

Here are some photos I took in Crested Butte in the mid eighties. The bikes are hand made, each is one of a kind, built by a couple of guys from somewhere in Colorado. I don't know who they were or what happened to them, but I got the photos.

Notice that the chainstay has been moved to prevent chainsuck, like the "Alien" bike.
 

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