Paul Chain Keeper

The Paul Chain Keeper is a chain retention device for 1X single ring drivetrains. It’s available in models to either clamp on a seat tube in place of a derailleur (shown here), or mount on an external bottom bracket. The seat tube version is available in three sizes to fit 28.6mm, 31.8mm, and 35.0mm seat tubes. The external bottom bracket model is intended for full suspension frames, carbon fiber frames, frames with eccentric bottom brackets, and frames with non-standard tubing.

Not all 1X set-ups require a chain keeper. If you’re doing a conversion, my advice is to give it a try sans keeper for a week or two to see if chain derailment is going to be an issue. Drivetrains set-up with good alignment and high tension may never throw a chain, particularly if the shifters are indexed and the bike is only used on relatively smooth, paved roads. But, if you plan on riding your bike on dirt trails, or if you’re an aggressive rider who hops curbs and so forth, a chain keeper of some sort is definitely in order. I decided to install the Paul Chain Keeper on my bike because I occasionally ride dirt trails, and I sometimes hop curbs when transitioning from bike lanes to off-street paths.

The Paul Chain Keeper works as advertised; with this unit installed, your chain will not derail, period. The fit and finish are excellent, and like all Paul components, the Chain Keeper is manufactured right here in Chico, CA, USA.

I purchased my Paul Chain Keeper at The Bicycle Business in Sacramento, CA (thanks, guys!). They can also be ordered directly from Paul in Chico.

The Bicycle Business
Paul Component Engineering

Note: The Bicycle Business is a sponsor of this website.

Complete Streets

In highway engineering parlance, Complete Streets are roadways designed with all road users in mind, including transit riders, pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorists. Well-designed Complete Streets enable users of all types to move safely along their length.

A portion of a heavily-trafficked 4-lane, 45 mph arterial in my area was recently turned into a Complete Street. Prior to the conversion, riding a bike on this section of roadway was not a pleasant experience. The shoulder was narrow, rough, and strewn with debris, and because motorists often travel at freeway speeds on this road, taking the lane was completely out of the question.

Recently, the roadway was re-paved and widened, and a full-width bike lane and sidewalk were installed. The improvement in the riding experience was astonishing; the road went from being one to avoid, to being a useful and comfortable route to get across that part of town.

While the philosophical arguments for and against bicycle-specific infrastructure continue unabated, out in the real world Incomplete Streets don’t hold a candle to Complete Streets.


For some reason, I always feel compelled to note these little milestones.

EcoVelo Houndstooth Wool Caps

A shipment of EcoVelo Houndstooth Wool Caps just arrived from Walz Caps. These are sumptuous, 4-panel black/white houndstooth wool caps, embroidered with the EcoVelo logo on the right side. Supplies are limited, so order yours soon for the upcoming tweed season!

EcoVelo Caps Order Page

Civia Mission Rack

Civia has a new rack in the works. From the Civia blog:

Here is a sneak peak of the new Civia Mission rack. With clean lines, this light aluminum rack is rated for 40 pounds, or a good bicycle transportation load. This rack should be in stock in a few weeks.

I like the clean lines of this little rack — it reminds me of the Tubus Fly and it’s just a little Nitto-ish. With a 40 lb. weight limit it should be plenty strong for commute loads.


Good News from NYDOT

Some choice tidbits from the New York City Department of Transportation 2009 Sustainable Streets Index:

3.2% increase in bus and subway ridership in 2008; 12.3% increase in bus and subway ridership since 2003; 2.0% decline in weekday traffic volumes in 2008; 3.4% decline in weekday traffic volumes since 2003

32% increase in bicycle commuting into the Manhattan core from 2007 to 2008; Additional 26% increase in bicycle commuting from 2008 to 2009; 126% increase in bicycle commuting since 2003

“From 2003 to 2007, rising levels of mass transit ridership and bicycle commuting accompanied population and job growth in New York City, while vehicle traffic levels were essentially unchanged.”


“The continued growth of transit ridership and cycling, even as traffic volumes declined, indicates that the shift toward sustainable modes is not dependent on economic growth. Instead, this shift has been produced by the long-term investment in the transit infrastructure and rapid expansion of the bicycle network, both of which have attracted growing numbers of New Yorkers during the start of the recession as well as the earlier period.”


“These results show that at a citywide level, regional transportation policy decisions made over the last three decades—to rebuild and expand the transit network, to build a quality cycling network, and to manage traffic demand by shifting as many drivers as possible to higher-performance modes—have had a measurable impact on the way New Yorkers choose to travel, through good and bad economic times.”

NYDOT 2009 Sustainable Streets Index

Shimano and Peak Oil

I ran across this interesting article at Seeking Alpha suggesting Shimano may be a good “peak oil” investment. In an article at Alt Energy Stocks, the same author recommends other bicycle and scooter stocks as good peak oil investments.

Seeking Alpha
Alt Energy Stocks

© 2011 EcoVelo™