Well we’ve made it through our first year all thanks to the great support of our customers, brands and buds… Especially Matt Rennick without whom none of this would have been possible. But let’s face it, that last point could be said for basically anything that happens in this city. Let’s hear it for The Rennick! In celebration we’re having our first ride in of the year with some help from our friends at Deus Ex Machina and Raen Optics. So come out on May 18th from 7-9 to enjoy some bbq, refreshments, and motorcycles! We’ll have some great prizes to raffle off as well. All weekend long we’ll also be doing a Deus & Raen popup shop in the back so be sure to come and check that out on Saturday night / Sunday.
Anyone in the great white north that has any experience ordering moto stuff from south of the border knows what a ball-ache it can be and what insane shipping costs, coupled with duties and often outrageous brokerage fees can do to do your bottom line. So, here is your opportunity to save some bucks while supporting an amazing local business, even if they aren’t really local to you, from now on.
I was really bummed I couldn’t join because my work schedule just wouldn’t allow it (I suspect that is going to be a running theme this summer) but after the first couple days it seemed like a bit of a hell-ride and I didn’t feel so bad. Just the same, I hate missing out on a trip like that – my FOMO is in overdrive.
I’ve always been of the mind that Kickstarter and similar crowd-sourced funding resources were the exclusive domain of “inventors” for product specific launches but recently my thinking has changing as I realized that crowd-sourced funding gives small businesses, regardless of format or offerings, opportunities to expand in ways that traditional funding methods never could.
One of my favorite Toronto brands (which also happens to be run but some seriously fucking amazing people), Klaxon Howl, is looking to expand into the expensive and competitive NYC market and we all have the opportunity to help them do just that and get yourself some pretty rad “rewards” at a discount for lending a hand so I figured “why the hell not?” and encourage you to do the same.
I’ve bought a few things from Matt, Lena, Bram & crew over the years and everything I have gets worn weekly, if not daily, and has held up like few others would have. I treat my clothing badly and wear it like it’s meant to be worn so if it can survive me, it can survive anything.
This winter Walter got set up with a fancy pants Filson Reversible Dog Coat to match his bowl & collar – he’s very brand loyal. He doesn’t reeeeeeally need a coat, the Husky in him makes him love the winter, but we figured in the rain and on the very worst days it couldn’t hurt to have it.
Pretty much everyone we know that has a dog has this coat so we figured, rather than letting all the other dogs make fun of ours for all having the same coat, we could patch them all out and make them bad-ass gang jackets so if you’re at Bellwoods and you see The #1 Good Boys walking down the hill snapping in matching patch-jackets, you best get to steppin’!
I haven’t had much (read: ANY) time to do anything on the blog as my life has been totally commandeered by work (which isn’t a bad thing, necessarily) but until I get back to regular stuff, some of the buds are having Black Friday (I know, I know, we’re not ‘Murican…) sales so check ‘em out!
The temperature is dropping in Toronto and it’s time to bundle up! Fortunately for me the fine folks at Lifetime Collective were kind enough to let me get my grubby little hands on some of their FW12 line a little bit ago (in stores now*) and boy, it sure is nice!
I got a Takanawa sweater which is just a little different than the one currently on the site. Mine seems like a mix between this one and the Takanawa + or the Takanawa Shaker with the button down front… But I digress. Sure, it’s just a hooded sweatshirt but that’s what makes it great – what do you really want in a hoodie? Warm, comfortable materials, quality construction, nice little details and a great fit? It’s all there and this guy is now in regular rotation.
I was also set up with a Moss Mountain vest which is great and I’ve been wearing it every day since I got it over top of whatever other jacket I’ve been wearing. It’s a nice and warm, poly-filled quilted vest with nice brass snaps which also looks killer in orange (hint, hint).
Well folks, it’s that time of year again… Winter. Ok, technically speaking we’re still in the fall but I’m starting to be able to see my breath and that’s winter as far as I’m concerned.
With that comes a lot of choices about how to get around in the winter for those of us that don’t own cars and think the TTC sucks eggs. Personally, I’ll ride my moto for as long as I can (I think I rode well into December for the last couple of years) and then I’ll be on bicycle and foot for the rest of the winter.
In years passed I’ve always just bundled up and layered through the winter which has been fine, of course, but between the commute to work and the countless hours I’ll spend at the dog park, Marika at Town Moto convinced me to invest in some quality heated gear and thus far, on those few cold days we’ve had, it has not disappointed. First I bought a Black Jack heated vest from Electrowear which plugs in to the auxiliary output of my 12v battery.
Newer bikes will typically have the jack factory installed (H-D, anyway) but if yours doesn’t, the vest does come with an adapter that you can easily hook up to your battery yourself and extensions are available if you find the connection a little tight.
The vest is light, thin enough that it adds almost no bulk under your jacket and adds a level of core warmth that I’m really, really going to enjoy as the colder weather continues to roll in.
Once I was sold on the benefits of heated gear, I decided that some heated glove liners were in order and I settled on the Battery Heated Glove Liners from Venture. The gloves run on rechargeable lithium-ion batteries and on the high setting will get you about two hours of warmth (4 hours on med, 5 hours on low) and they are seriously fucking fantastic.
Full gloves are available but given that I am a bonafide CoolGuy™ I opted for the liners so that I can still wear my RSD Diesel gloves (also available at TM) so I can look cool and stay warm. Yeah, I just wrote that… and I’m leaving it.
Plus, I feel like a fucking super-hero when these things are on. They’re so bad.
Side note: I really need to start using my camera again – I think another iPhone lens has shit the bed.
As most of you will already know, two of my dearest buds Andrew & Marika took possession of a building at Ossington & Argyle a few months ago and have spent pretty much every waking moment since then preparing for today – the opening of their new shop Town Moto.
They are “a small shop in downtown Toronto specializing in motorcycle gear for the urban rider.” They carry a full range of Helmets, jackets, gloves, boots and pretty everything you need to ride safely as well as a variety of soft-goods to make sure that you look cool doing it… let’s face it, none of us would ride motorcycles (at least not the ones we ride) if they didn’t look cool! Come on now…
Aside from a few bars, grips, etc. they aren’t carrying much in the way of moto parts but they do have a decent selection of tools, and supplies for basic motorcycle maintenance including copies of Modern Motorcycle Mechanics and a book about the fella that wrote it as well…
The paper that has adorned the window of 132 Ossington for months is officially off and the doors are open!
Congrats, buds, you’ve worked very hard for a very long time and you deserve all of the success that this venture is going to bring.
Some photos John Watson took from this year’s NAHBS show Portland’s Tanner Goods branching out further into the bicycle world, presumably after the success of their collaboration with Ira Ryan Cycles & Ned Ludd (shown below), and the results are beautiful. Killer, get on it!