Sturmey Archer hub overhaul workshop, Wed 24 April

Well, this is exciting!

Society of Three Speeds is proud to announce that we’ll be hosting our first ever workshop! This class will be taught by expert mechanic Patrick Loftus, who has overhauled many an AW hub in his day. It will be held at the Community Cycling Center (1700 NE Alberta St) on Wednesday April 24 at 7 pm.

Learn how to overhaul a Sturmey Archer three speed hub! Veteran bike mechanic Patrick Loftus will open up an AW hub, dismantle it, and reassemble it in working order during this ninety minute workshop. Participants will learn about lubing and adjusting cables while learning some theory and history. Bring your own three speed as we may be able to help with adjustments. Please note that this is otherwise NOT a hands-on workshop.

Limited to nine people.

Price: $20 for Society of Three Speeds members, $25 for non members, plus service charge.

Society of Three Speeds memberships MUST be purchased previous to purchase of member-rate ticket. You can purchase membership here:

(Please note: You just need to PURCHASE membership, not receive in the mail. So yes, you can purchase membership and then immediately purchase member-rate ticket.)

Thank you to the Community Cycling Center for giving us the space for this event.

Register for this workshop here.


Eventbrite - Sturmey Archer hub overhaul workshop

Memberships finally out!

Hello friends of Three Speeds! It look longer than I hoped or wanted, but I finally have gotten out ALL of those membership kits! If you ordered a SoTS kit since I started the pre-sale last fall, or if you are one of those few that managed to win/buy one during the couple years where they were not available, you should have received your kit in the mail. And if not yet, you should be getting it in within the next week or so.

If you haven’t received your kit by the end of the month, please get in touch.

And if you didn’t buy one, you still have a chance to get in on the $20 rate before it may raise again. Purchase your membership here.


Announcing Three Speed Adventure April 2019!

The Robin Hood path racer project at Mount Tabor. See, a three speed can climb a hill!

Hello friends of Three Speeds! I skipped Three Speed October in 2018 so it’s been a year since the last challenge. And yes, it’s time for another challenge!

Announcing Three Speed Adventure April 2019!

This challenge is about doing things with/on a three speed bicycle that some people would unfairly consider “beyond its abilities”. These bikes are more able than even some seasoned three-speeders think! This challenge is open to any three speed internally geared bicycle, of any year, any country, any. Four and five speed internally geared bicycles also welcome to participate. No derailleurs.

The overall challenge consists of five different sub-challenges:

  1. Ride your three speed at least fifteen miles (25 km) in one ride.
  2. A climb of 5% or more grade, with a cumulative elevation gain of at least 100 feet (30 m).
  3. A bit of unpaved/dirt action, of at least a cumulative one half mile (1 km).
  4. Coffee outside via three speed.
  5. A bike overnight or bike camping trip by three speed.

You’ll find every little detail about the challenge here. 

And unlike Three Speed October, it’s about quality not quantity. You can do all the challenges individually, do them all together, or in any combination you see fit!

I’ve done this event in 2017 and 2018. The basics have remained the same since then. Here’s what’s pertinent for this year’s event:

  • The Three Speed Adventure April challenge will occur during the full calendar month of April, which in 2019 is Monday April 1st through Tuesday April 30th. So your ride(s) can happen anytime in April. (If you are doing a bike overnight, I will be so gracious to allow you to start one on Sunday March 31st, or end one on Wednesday May 1st. HOWEVER, any other challenges MUST happen within the month of April. So, if you do a bike overnight that overflows into the adjoining months AND want to add other stuff like Coffee Outside or the Climbing Challenge, they HAVE to be within April.)
  • You’ll have all of May to submit the reports of your challenges. Deadline for submission is 11:59 PM PDT on Friday May 31, 2019.
  • Find the forms onerous? Don’t do the internet? You can submit your challenge reports by mail! Please get in touch with me first (either by email or by post, address below). You will still have to submit the same report information that you would if you do online. You’ll also need to send me a pic of the bike (or bikes) you’re using, and if you can’t do that, you’ll need to send me a drawing instead. (And I don’t care that you “don’t know how to draw”.) You can submit postal reports individually or together. Reports will need to be postmarked no later than Friday May 31st.
  • Prizes! You qualify for a one-inch button for each challenge you do. If you hit at least three of the sub-challenges, you’ll qualify for something special (to be determined). If you can do all five, great! But you won’t get something else beyond five buttons and the something special. Please note: It will cost between $5-15 to get the prize pack, plus shipping.
  • Anyone who completes at least one (and any one) of the challenges will qualify for a discounted Society of Three Speeds membership! For 2019, this discount price will be $15 plus shipping. Get in touch with me directly to get info on purchase.

Okay! Looking forward to your participation! Please fill out the form below if you want to participate. The form will be open until May 1st. Once you complete the registration form, you’ll be sent the Challenge Completion form during the first week of April.

Email me if you have questions. Or write: Shawn Granton, P O Box 14185, Portland OR 97293

Posting your challenges to the internet? Please tag with #threespeedadvapr2019

Of farms, daffodils, Tweed, and beer: A weekend in the Skagit Valley, 14-17 March

Urban Adventure League

I’ve mentioned previously how Emee and I won’t be able to make it to the Lake Pepin Three Speed Ride this year. While it’s definitely a bummer, there are other smaller yet similar rides in the area we can do to give us the feel of Pepin without going the distance.

Like the Dandy Daffodil Tweed Ride for example. This annual ride happens in/around La Conner, Washington around St. Patrick’s Day. It’s a thirteen mile tour of the flat farmlands of the Skagit Valley, a much more rural flavor than the primarily urban Tweed Rides I’ve been a part of. We did it for the first time last year, and I had remarked then that it resembled Pepin in miniature. Since we’re not going to Minnesota this year, it gave us more impetus to go again.

Last year we brought the three speeds in the van, mostly because of time…

View original post 656 more words

Not going to Pepin this year.

Hello friends of three speeds. I made some noises about wanting to head out to Minnesota (and Wisconsin) in May for the annual Lake Pepin Three Speed Tour. But it looks like that isn’t going to happen, at least not in 2019.

No, it’s not because I’m over the event, or over three speeds. It’s just the practical complications: Emee won’t be able to go because of work stuff, and while I can go solo if I really want to, it’s more fun to go with someone else. Plus, while self-employment means my schedule is more flexible than in the past, I’m pretty broke right now so I should save my cash. And this year is shaping up to be a pretty busy one for me in regards to travels and bike rides. Something has to give.

Still, I feel a twinge of sadness about not going to Pepin. I’ve gone four times so far (2014, 2015, 2016, and 2018), each time being a blast. And Emee had a blast last year, and really wants to go again. But going every year isn’t always possible.

There’s the practical reality of us living in the Northwest and the ride happening in the Midwest. For the trip to be worth it to me, it has to consist of train travel, which is a total of four days, plus some time in Minneapolis (usually three days). Add that to the weekend of the ride, we’re looking at about a week and a half dedicated to the event. That’s quite a bit of time. It’s easier for all those three speed nutters who live in the upper Midwest to go every year, since it’s just a (long) weekend for them. I knew that I wouldn’t be able to go every year even if I wanted. I’m amazed that I pulled off a three year streak.

Emee and I are still hoping to go again, hopefully in 2020. If we do, we’d also like to make the trip even longer so we can do more things out that way. As it was, the Sunday evening of last year’s ride was hectic, as we had to drive back to St. Paul, drop off a rental car, box bikes, and get on a train by 10 PM. We don’t want to repeat that.

In any case, taking a year off should mean that I’ll be even more excited for it in 2020!

In the meantime, there’s plenty of goings-on in these parts. I’m still gearing up for the Three Speed Adventure April challenge and the Three Speed Ride on Saturday April 20th. And Emee and I are heading up to La Conner, Washington on St. Patrick’s Day weekend to participate in the Dandy Daffodil Tweed Ride. While it’s not specifically a three speed ride, it has elements of it. After riding it last year, I felt like it was a miniature Lake Pepin Three Speed Tour. So we’re looking forward to it!

Are you going to be heading to Lake Pepin? Or maybe on one of my rides?