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SRAM THUMBIE
A few years ago we discontinued these during a fall purge of slow selling products. Turns out this was one we shouldn’t have gotten rid of. After many and numerous requests we have finally brought them back. These come with a hinged clamp in 22.2mm and are 100% lovingly made by us in our factory in Chico CA. They are meant to be used with the SRAM SL-500 bar-end (aka TT /aero) shifters. They are not compatible with the SRAM R2C “return to center” shifters. Get your SRAM Thumbie here!
Lost & Found Gravel Grinder:
An Epic Tour of the Lost Sierras... and BACON.
Photo Credit: John Watson

Back in 2013 some dirt wizards at the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship began the first ever Lost & Found Gravel Grinder. This 100 mile (with a 65 and 35 mile option) race runs through some of the most remote and beautiful terrain of the Lost Sierras. As the first of three races that make up the Lost Sierra Triple Crown, (the second being the Downieville Classic and the third being Grinduro), Lost & Found really sets us all up for a summer of dirt magic.

Photo Credit: Tyler Reiswig
Since it’s conception six years ago, Paul has set up an aid station for each race of the Triple Crown and slangs countless pounds of bacon, endless kegs of Sierra Nevada Pale, shots of whiskey, pickles for days, and even some of the boring stuff like fruit, water, and gels. This year we saw over 1,500 riders come through our aid station; these brave souls took on the snow (the route had to be adjusted a bit due to the heavy snow pack in the Sierras) and mosquitos to experience the staggering views, cold creeks, and perfect tacky dirt magic that Lost & Found offers. This year we even upped our aid station game by bringing the official Paul hug puppy named Blue. I mean, who doesn’t want a puppy hug on mile 75 of a 100 miler?
Overall, the race was a complete success! Everyone from the volunteers to the riders were nothing but smiles for miles. If you’ve never been (or even if you have!) be sure to make time to come out and play with us for the Triple Crown races. You won’t be disappointed!
Photo Credit: Tyler Reiswig
Bruce Gordon
“Bruce Gordon was a grump and a pain in the ass” was the opening line on my Instagram post when I heard he had passed away. I’m 100% certain he would have appreciated that. This is my third try at writing a bit about him dying and what I remember of him and how he affected my life. The first one was downright depressing. The second, a bit cheerier but still begrudgingly. Then I went to his memorial (June 30th 2019) in Petaluma and just about lost it for all the love that was there.  

Bruce had been a thorn in my side, a person to be polite to but try and avoid for much of the last few years. He got grumpier and more self-destructive every time I talked with him. No amount of praise or pep talk would rouse him from his depression, and it was really bugging me. It bugged me to the point I did not want to have one more “life is just so shitty for me” talks with him. The problem was I am a good listener and Bruce was a good complainer.

At the memorial I met up with all our old friends, all there for the same reason: to say some things about Bruce and reminisce with each other over his antics and quirks. There, it dawned on me that all these people standing around me are all known to me almost exclusively because I met Bruce Gordon as a wide eyed shy kid trying to fit in or be accepted to the ultra-cool world of the Nor-Cal bike people scene at Interbike in the very early nineties.

Interbike was located in Anaheim in the early days and I had a booth in 1992. At some point that year I escaped the booth and wandered to the back of the hall where I found the derelict enclave of Bruce Gordon Cycles, King Cage and Salsa Cycles. Probably some other folks in there too but that whole era has become a little foggy. Located there was the spanking bike, basically an exercise bike with rubber gloves stapled at the cuffs to the tire. A rear tire in this case. Once you got it up to speed centrifugal force would make the gloves to stand up just enough to spank your behind. It was genius. Bruce was really excited about this and it was actually my introduction to him. He urged me to try it out. He could care less what Shimano or TREK were doing that year; he was much more interested in the spanking bike. It seems I had found my people. This famous guy, Bruce Gordon, king of the touring bicycle, was a silly, tall, and funny guy more interested in people riding a “spanking bike” then doing any actual business.

Through that interaction I met the crew that would later open up the underdog bike makers club for me. I think somehow that night I had met Ross Shafer & Sean Walling (who later went on to do Soulcraft and is at White Industries currently) at a burger place. Or maybe our rooms were near each other, it’s all pretty hazzy now. Ross was nice to me. Nice to ME! I didn’t know shit and this icon of mountain biking was telling me stories and maybe we got high. It’s all actually very foggy. Did I mention that?

And then on Sunday June 30th 2019, there we all were. Thirty years later. It was a beautiful thing and I was so happy I went because I needed a reminder of the Bruce I loved. The Bruce who was a true artist, and innovator; funny as fuck, and a person who loved to bring people together for a good and hilarious/ironic/”give it to the man” time. I’m bummed he missed his own party because it was exactly how he would have wanted it to be, including the telling of countless stories of Bruce being the grumpy pain in the ass he was.
Bruce Gordon
30th Anniversary 
Well, well, well, we made it to 30. Through thick and thin we never gave up, never moved on. Believe me there have been a few times when that looked really good. But then what? I’d have to get a job! That’s just not going to happen, and we think it’s paid off.
 
Here is a glimpse at some of the specialness we’ve got planned for our birthday. It’s a highly useful tool for transferring the contents of a bottle into your mouth. It’ll really be a good start for that project.
Sometime later this year we’ll have an open house at the factory and you’re all invited. That’ll be in September sometime. We also have a very special project we’re working on. We think you’re going to really enjoy this one.
Groveland Grind
What is the Groveland Grind? It’s a small gravel race/ride that’s got some serious potential for much bigger numbers. It’s their second year, and this was our first. Small world true story: Through some random or not so random life events the organizer and I went to high school together and the event occurs in the same tiny mountain town both our parents retired to. It also has California’s oldest continuously operating saloon in the state, the Iron Door Saloon. Been there many times.
Groveland is 48 miles west of the valley floor of Yosemite on highway 120. Like most small towns in the California Mountains and foothills it is there because of the gold rush of the early 1850’s. Seriously, almost any mountain town in northern California can be traced one way or another to gold. Then, when the gold ran out, logging took over. Both of these activities left trails, railroad grades and primitive roads all over this region and Groveland has them in spades.
 
The Groveland grind sported the familiar format of three lengths with the longest being 45 miles with 5000 feet of climbing. Not epic by any means but the region has legs for much, much more. I went solo, spent some time with the parents and then did our usual bacon/watermelon/water/beer/whiskey setup. Being our first time, and most riders first time on a race course, we got some funny looks but a few picked up what we were putting down. I know it made the race better and it was fun to put a little of our patented aid station spice into a nearly new event.
Either way we’ll be back next year (I mean my parents live there, kinda gotta do it) and I think Dwight’s hard work and continuing cooperation with the Forest Service will bring nothing but growth from this event. If you’re Nor Cal I’d urge you to attend next year.
Copyright © 2019 Paul Component Engineering, All rights reserved.


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