Bike: Clem Smith Jr,

A perfect bike for me in my, uh, later years?
Updated: January 2024

My bike frame broke again. Not from anything other that me being 6’8” and ~280lbs. I’m a city bike commuter, nothing drastic going on, just the geometry of a frame getting pushed to it’s limits over a few years. I really loved that bike. It was a Rivendell Quickbeam - a tall (68cm) single speed bike. The simplicity of no gears, and a frame that just about fit me. It was light and fast and nimble around the city. But a little to weak for my, uh, heft.

Rivendell is great for tall folks, as they have a philosophy around having a shorter seat post included in their designs. Which means that a regular long seat post makes things just right without messing up the bike geometry.

Rivendell offered to replace it, but there was a catch: that frame had been discontinued. My single speed dream was over. Which, to be honest, is for the better. I’m older now and that kinda biking wasn’t really me anymore. Because they’re nice people, they offered me a discount on a replacement bike. And lo, they’d just started selling a step-thru bike, the “Clem Smith Jr.”, in a Large.

The 64cm bike frame is a prefect cruiser for my body frame.

I’ve been riding it in SF for a couple of years, it’s as strong as it was on Day 1, and it always is a joy to ride. Comfy big tire ride, upright sitting, easy on and off, gears to go fast and to get up the very steep hills around my house, baskets on the front and the back. It’s really everything I want from a bike these days.