Friday, July 27, 2012

Kona Raijin: A True American Beauty

Although Aaron's current favorite bike weighs in over 58 pounds of Surly Big Dummy cargo-and-baby-carrying delight, we at Sultana Cycles have just fallen in love with our newest acquisition: the Kona Raijin -- a beautiful titanium hardtail frame, weighing under 4 pounds.

What is it?  A titanium hardtail 29er frame that maximizes the inherent virtues of titanium with geometry ideally suited for a fast, efficient, and simple ride.  The Raijin features a press-fit BB30 bottom bracket shell and sliding dropouts.  The curved downtube combines with the natural properties of titanium to balance the need for both stiffness and compliancy, creating a smooth and FUN off-road ride without complicated and sometimes problematic suspension features.  The finish is raw and industrial with a laser-engraved Kona logo.

Why we love it?  First, the Raijin is gorgeous, in both appearance and design.  Second, it's handmade in the US of A -- almost unheard of in the bicycle world these days.  And third, it's completely customizable -- the Raijin features an interchangeable dropout for geared or singlespeed  setup, which allows you to  build it however you want.  Pick your favorite parts or bling it out in the season's hottest colors (admittedly, we don't know what those are, but we're big fans of orange.)  You'll feel like you're floating across the trail from your elevated 29-inch perch.

18" frame in stock now, $1900 out the door.  Feel free to stop by or call us at (928) 649-3822 for more information on this American-made beauty.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Kona Honky Tonk: Sexy & Sassy Retro Ride

Northern Arizona has boundless opportunities for riding asphalt as well as dirt, and our pick for hitting the road is the Kona Honky Tonk.

What is it? A work-horse, no-nonsense road ride with a custom-butted chromoly steal frame and Kona Retro Road fork -- a combination that creates a stable but nimble ride. The Honky Tonk features Shimano Sora nine-speed gearing with matching STI shifters and upgraded Alex rims with machined sidewalls for more effective braking. A generous bar with nice square shape, sloping top-tube design, and well-padded saddle make this one of the most comfortable road bikes around, and 5 centimeters of headset spacers allow further tweaking for your riding style. The clean lines remind us of the bikes of yore, with a subtle 21st century makeover.

Why we love it? Here at Sultana Cycles, we don't believe you have to count grams or coat yourself in head-to-toe spandex to feel the need for speed. (In fact, I once rode 65 miles round trip from Flagstaff to Mormon Lake on an early-90s steel rigid bike with a crack in the frame. In flip-flops.) The Honky Tonk is a thoroughly modern machine with a sweet disposition. It fits our philosophy and makes for a smooth, simple ride for all abilities, versatile enough for commuting and coffee house cruising on the days you aren't hitting the pavement.

And of course, we can't get enough of that sassy Retro Red finish -- sure to lift your spirits as you grind up that last hill or drag yourself out for a spin pre-coffee -- and simple, vintage Kona label graphics.

The Honky Tonk is on the floor at Sultana Cycles and priced out-the-door at $950.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Kona Hei Hei 29er SE: Not the Short Bus

It's August in the Verde Valley and here at Sultana Cycles, we're crossing our fingers for the monsoon -- and soon. 10 days over 100 degrees makes it difficult to enjoy a leisurely roll through the park. However, rains and cooler weather will be here before you know it, and we have some exciting new inventory, professionally assembled and ready for your admiration.

Today's pick is special ed like you've never seen before: the Special Edition Orange Kona Hei Hei 29er.

What is it? A special edition dual suspension mountain bike with four inches of travel front and rear and big, beautiful 29-inch Easton wheels. Hei Hei means "race" in Hawaiian and this bike will roll . . . over rocks, logs, roadkill (and maybe even your riding buddy) without a pause. The Hei Hei features Kona's 4-Bar linkage that's more pedal efficient, a fairly light-weight but heavy duty RockShox fork, Sram 3x10 drive train Avid Elixir hydraulic disk breaks, and sweet refinements like more standover room, setback seat post, and tapered head tube.

Why we love it? With the ability to climb like a goat and descend like an avalanche without chattering your teeth, its an affordable full suspension bike that makes pretty much every trail accessible and comfortable to novice and experienced rider.

Plus, as diehard Clemson Tigers fans (some by marriage or birth than by choice), you can't beat that sassy orange and white color combo!

Available at Sultana Cycles and priced below MSRP -- tax-included at $2850. Stop by and take it for a ride. We guarantee you won't even notice the heat.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Tire Inflation

As appears to be the way of the world, bicycle prices are going up up up, starting this month, concurrent with what has been described as "unimaginable increases" in steel, nickel, copper, zinc, etc.

Leading the way on the price increase is rubber -- which means that not just bikes, but the price of tubes and tires has risen almost 10% over the last year, with an additional projected increase of 20% on the wholesale price over the next 18 months.

I could digress into a discussion of economics and supply relative to demand and inflation and the real interest rate and globalization, but I don't think that's what anyone checked in for. Here at Sultana Cycles, we're stocking up on these items, hoping to continue to offer the best prices on them for as long as possible. Along the same vein, if you're a frequent flatter or plan on putting more miles on your bike than ever this year (to combat those corresponding "unimaginable increases" in gas prices . . .) consider heading in to purchase your replacement tires or grab a few extra tubes now!

In other news, Panzer remains unaffected by these price increases and continues to burn rubber accordingly...

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Bike Shop Baby

Aaron and I are proud to announce the birth of our first baby! Our son, Panzer Martin Ruda, was born October 28, 2010 at 4:55 a.m. -- a beautiful time of day for a bike ride, or to be awake in general, and pushing a human being out of your hoo-ha. He weighed in at 7 pounds, 7 ounces and measured 20 1/2 inches long. He's long and skinny and definitely inherited his daddy's legs.

Sultana Cycles is back on its regular schedule, despite our new sleep-deprived state. Feel free to stop by and welcome Panzer to the world -- we are frequent visitors. Also, I am working hard to fatten him up so he's big enough that Aaron can wear him to work :) He'll be changing tubes before we know it. But for now, we will just enjoy.

P.S. Big thanks to Allison for providing the Pashley for P's first ride and big photo shoot!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

More Boom Less Zoom

Admittedly, our personal favorite rides are those off the beaten path -- over the rocks and washes and through the weeds, bumping and booming along. The BOOM BOOM is just more our style. Lucky for us, there is a fantastic bicycling opportunity only a few blocks away -- in Dead Horse Ranch State Park. The park covers more than 400 acres and is home to a variety of trails, suitable for riders of all ages and abilities. Most notable is the Thumper loop -- a 7 1/2 mile up, down and all around mish-mash of varying terrain: rolling singletrack, uphill grinds and quick (scary?) downhills. Plus, the park boasts a six-mile stretch of the Verde River and three fishing lagoons -- perfect scenery for a little rest or picnic. Aaron promised me a picture on his last ride, but no luck for now, so you'll just have to go and check it out yourself!

(I do use the term "us" liberally, as I was kaboshed from my bicycle in month 6 of pregnancy because I apparently was too top-heavy and imbalanced to perch precariously on the top of my 29er :( BUT I will be back in the saddle, literally, as soon as I recover from baby Ruda's debut -- and just in time for the best riding weather of the year here in Cottonwood!)

The road riding is also very attractive in the Verde Valley, with dedicated bike lanes, more courteous neighbors, and the lure of nearby Jerome and Sedona on opposites ends of 89A, and we look forward to exploring the open road a little more. Obviously, Aaron's top-notch service extends to all types of bicycles, but we look forward to any comments and suggestions regarding how we can better serve the Verde Valley roadies! ZOOM ZOOM.

And for those of you who still get your BOOM BOOM on the pavement, stop by and check out our BMX parts and accessories and big-kid BMX/dirt-jumping bikes. At Sultana Cycles, we believe riding should always be fun, and you're never too "adult" for a spin around the dirt track or manuevering through a few urban obstacles.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Welcome to Main Street, Cottonwood

Our biggest apologies to all our loyal customers who have wandered through the Whiskey Row Alley in the past two weeks and been devastated by the apparent loss of Sultana Cycles -- please rest assured we are alive and well! Although it's long overdue for an update, the shop celebrated its first anniversary on July 4th of this year, and we are now looking forward to our first bike shop baby with official due date of October 21st. In an attempt to get all three of us -- Aaron, Kelley and baby Ruda -- in the same city, Sultana Cycles relocated to Main Street, Cottonwood.

The shop is now located at 470 South Main Street, Suite B, in beautiful Cottonwood, Arizona and had its official opening on October 1st. Thank you to everyone who came out and cracked open a New Belgium brew to christen the new shop!

Although we'll miss our neighbors and regulars in Prescott, we are excited about our new spot! We have a little bit more space, a little bit more sunshine, and a much better view -- but still the same goal of providing quality parts and service to our customers. Aaron has given up his prejudice against tire liners in light of the thorny Verde Valley terrain. I have given up my lunch hour to put in bike shop duties (which for me is mostly smiling and looking pretty, albeit a little bit bigger than before).

Give us a call at (928) 649-3822 or stop by to see our new digs... and our new collection of Kona bicycles (with more to come in the 2011 line!) ... and in a few weeks to welcome baby Ruda!