STOLEN BIKE: 9th December – John Lewis Cardiff

This bike was stolen from the rear of John Lewis in Cardiff
9th December between 18:30 – 20:30 


Fausto Coppi 54cm Bike has:
Fulcrum Racing 7’s w/Vitoria Rubino tyres.
F/Mech Sora 8Sp,
R/Mech Tiagra 9Sp,
105 C/Set 39/52t,
Look Delta Pedals red/white,
Tiagra 9Sp STi’s,
105 Calipers,
B-Twin Bars & Stem & Zoom S/Post & Bassano saddle.


Bike Friendly: Spit & Sawdust Skatepark – Cardiff, UK


Spit And Sawdust Cardiff Skatepark Cardiff CyclistLocated just off Newport Road in Cardiff, UK; Spit & Sawdust was opened in 2014 by Christian Hart and Nia Metcalfe.
Born out of the need for an indoor skateboarding space in Cardiff and although primarily a skatepark, Spit & Sawdust caters to a variety of people in the area and hosts a wealth of events, performances and exhibitions.

 “It is a community hub, a creative haven, an off-beat sanctuary and somewhere to get a bloody good burger.”Spit And Sawdust Cardiff Skatepark Cardiff Cyclist

Spit And Sawdust Cardiff Skatepark Cardiff Cyclist

Spit & Sawdust really is everything we love at Cardiff Cyclist. Independent, sustainable, D.I.Y, local and bike-friendly.

Whilst a food review would fall so easily from our recently tantalised taste buds, we’ll leave that to Chile Bites, a true foodie with a super-rad blog about it all.

Spit And Sawdust Cardiff Skatepark Cardiff CyclistThe desire to live and work sustainably is evident when you get chatting to Christian and Nia who both utilise bicycles for transport in Cardiff.  The ethos is an ethical one and bike-friendliness within their business is clearly a part of that.

Spit And Sawdust Cardiff Skatepark Burger Cardiff Cyclist

“They have absolutely hit the nail on the head – without the designer price-tag” 

Spit And Sawdust Cardiff Skatepark Cardiff Cyclist
Spit And Sawdust Cardiff Skatepark Cardiff Cyclist
Whether you go for a coffee, to eat, to see an exhibition, a video premier or a baroque opera; There is something for everybody.
The prices are modest, service friendly and the food is really, really good.

Spit And Sawdust Cardiff Skatepark Cardiff Cyclist

On a visit to Minksy’s Drag Bar this year, Fanny Dazzler and her mate said that they could tell that our friends were skateboarders owing to the smell of pot noodle and disappointment.
– Pop in to Spit & Sawdust to smell neither.

Spit And Sawdust Cardiff Skatepark Cardiff Cyclist

Wanna’ see more?

Check out this video by TradeMarked who recently met with Christian & Nia at the park.

If you like the look of that head over to for some fully gourmet welsh filmmaking talent.

Instagram: @spitandsawdustskatepark
Facebook: /SpitAndSawdust


Cool Christmas Gifts for Cyclists

So you’re buying for a cyclist this year, eh?  The cycling gifts market is absolutely saturated with gimmicky crap and stuff that your beloved cyclist will probably chuck in a drawer on boxing day and hope you never ask about.  If you want to nail the perfect christmas gift for your dear cyclist then avoid clip-art mugs from amazon and read on for something a little more gourmet…

Inner Tube Wallet  |  Han-Made

Must Have Cool Christmas Gifts for Cyclists Inner Tube Wallet

If you want a cool christmas gift for a cyclist then we’re pretty sure these tick all the boxes. Place your order directly with Hannah at Han-Made for your very own awesome inner tube wallet.  Definitely a must-have.

Must Have Cool Christmas Gifts for Cyclists Inner Tube Wallet

Outdoor Adventure Experiences  |  GO APE

Must Have Cool Christmas Gifts for Cyclists Go Ape VouchersIf your cyclist will be bombarded by bike-themed gifts this Christmas and you want to do something a bit different, why not swing a little outside the box with an experience voucher for Go Ape?
They do forest segway trips, tree-top adventure courses and zip-wire trekking.
Go Ape have venues across the UK and your vouchers will be valid for 12 months should you like to wait for the summer.
Need more convincing? Well Go Ape will deliver this uber cool christmas gift to your cyclist in a nice wallet for FREE! (Alternatively they can instruct their digital monkeys to drop it into an e-mail inbox.)
This could be the ultimate gift for an adventurous cyclist this Christmas.

Shimano Sports Camera | Hargroves Cycles
WAS: £249.99 NOW: £179.99

shimano camera cm 1000-2 Must Have Cool Christmas Gifts for Cyclists

Want to splash out without breaking the bank? These pups do pretty much everything that a Go-Pro does but they’re smaller, more affordable and, lets face it; way more stealthy looking without compromising any of the functionality.
We’ve got our very own Shimano CM-1000 Sport Camera here at CC and we never leave HQ without it.
The Shimano CM-1000 Sport Camera is waterproof, durable and you can control it with your smartphone – super easy to connect and uber user friendly.
Oh, and Hargroves Cycles have it on sale right now with £70 off the RRP.
Click here for the full specs, photos and tech info

Bike Stickers  | VELOINK

Must Have Cool Christmas Gifts for Cyclists Velo Ink Bike Stickers

VeloInk is a cyclist owned graphics shop who produce stickers for cyclists.  They made us some for our CC blog bike back in October and we’ve been telling everybody about them ever since!  They use only the finest 3M materials that don’t peel, crack, or bubble.  Veloink ship worldwide and the service is friendly and quick!  VeloInk bike stickers make perfect stocking-fillers and are definitely a cool Christmas gift for cyclists. Must Have Cool Christmas Gifts for Cyclists Velo Ink Bike StickersMust Have Cool Christmas Gifts for Cyclists Velo Ink Bike Stickers Must Have Cool Christmas Gifts for Cyclists Velo Ink Bike Stickers

That concludes Cool Christmas Gifts for Cyclist: Part 1. We hope we’ve helped you towards some wicked Christmas gifts for your cyclist. Stay tuned for Part 2 and don’t forget to visit your local bike shop and support independent retailers this Christmas.

Cyclopaedia  |  Sunset Cycles  | Damien Harris Cycles  | Bike Shed Wales  |
Don Skene Cycles  |  Muddy Bum Bikes

Follow us on Twitter HERE | @CDFcyclist


Clean & Sprocket – Mobile Bike Washing in Cardiff, UK

Clean and Sprocket Bike Washing In Cardiff

Heads up Cardiff cyclists! There’s a new business on the block and we LOVE what they do.

Clean & Sprocket offer domestic cleaning services and  professional mobile bike washing in Cardiff from £5 and they’ll come to you (by bicycle!).

As cyclists themselves and having worked in bike shops in the area, the guys at Clean & Sprocket saw a huge number of local cyclists paying big bucks for avoidable repairs.  Why? Well, a clean bike lasts longer. FACT.

Clean & Sprocket offer a mobile bike washing service and you can text them for an instant quote. You can even choose from a range of bike cleaners and tailor the service to your exact needs.  They are super flexible, and really friendly too.

From race-ready washes to the ultimate commuter clean-up, Clean & Sprocket really can do it all at a time and place that suits you.

TEXT: 07904848200
for an instant quote

Twitter: @Clean_Sprocket
Facebook: /cleanandsprocket
nstagram: @cleanandsprocket

Clean and sprocket mobile bike washing cardiff

A Guide to Buying Your First Road Bike

So you’re buying your first road bike?  Welcome to the gang!

Buying your first road bike cardiff cyclist

When you’re buying your first road bike it can be really difficult to know what to look for. The market is saturated online and otherwise with everything from utter death-traps to damn good deals, but how do you know the difference?  If you’re unsure about buying your first road bike then you have come to the right place.

Read on for our comprehensive guide and top tips when buying your first road bike.

How much money should I spend on my first road bike? 
There really is no upper limit to what you can spend on your first road bike, but don’t expect anything magical for less than £500 unless its on Sale.
If you do decide to flash the cash and go for something over £1500 just remember that you’re still new to road cycling and probably haven’t worked out what you like in a bike just yet.  Having the best bike on the road won’t make you a better cyclist or help you to look like less of a novice.

At £500(ish) you get decent components, a lightweight enough aluminium frame and a bike that will actually encourage you to keep cycling. Buying a cheap bike won’t encourage you to get out on it and more often than not they end up unused and they don’t sell on easily.

But why have cotton when you can have silk?  Well, cotton is hard wearing, cotton is practical and cotton doesn’t make you cry because you crashed it into the back of a bus on a wet day and scratched it.
Start simple but not cheap & nasty.  Your first road bike will often later become your wet-weather/winter training bike or fetch you back a few hundred bucks towards a bike more suited to your needs in the future.

buying your first road bike liv avail

Where should I buy my first road bike?
Forget Amazon, forget Halfords and other ‘big box’ shops like Go Outdoors. They don’t want to help you progress as a cyclist and don’t really want to take care of you as their customer either. They want your money and as much profit as possible.  
  These places sell bikes that are manufactured and distributed cheaply. You’ll get a heavy/cumbersome frame, crap components and are likely to spend as much again in repairs when things break prematurely.

If you want decent service and to feel confident in your purchase then go into your local bike shop.  They’ll be able to give you advice, show you some bikes and make sure you get the right size too. Plus your local cycle-shop can point you in the direction of the local clubs and put your mind at ease about everything from clipping-in to club runs.
They can usually be competitive on price too.

Visit your local bike shop:
Cyclopaedia  |  Sunset Cycles  | Damien Harris Cycles  | Bike Shed Wales  |
Don Skene Cycles  |  Muddy Bum Bikes

independent bike shop

What type of road bike should I buy?
The type of road bike you should buy depends on what sort of cycling you’ll be doing. If you want to blast the commute to work or ride comfortably all day, maybe do a sportive or try the Car-Ten?  Look for an Endurance Road Bike like this and this and avoid race bikes, tri and TT bikes.

Endurance bikes have a more forgiving geometry for longer days in the saddle – you’ll be more comfortable and thus, want to cycle more. You can’t go wrong with a Giant Defy or Liv Avail. We’ve ridden them and they really are great bikes for the money.

What do you get on an entry level road bike?
Expect an aluminium frame, rim brakes, 700 x 23/25c wheels.

What pedals should I use on my first road bike?
Most road bikes don’t come with pedals so its a good idea to check out the options. If you’re going for a pedal, cleat and shoe combination expect to spend about £100 but you can pick up a pair of flatties for about £15.

There are 3 main types of pedals:

  • Flat
  • Clipless
  • Toe Clips / Cages

Remember, you’re already going to have to get used to riding a bike with STI shifters/brakes and drop handlebars with a totally new riding position. Don’t feel like you have to get clip-in pedals and shoes right away.
Why not start with flat pedals, at least for the first few weeks? We recommend getting used to your new bike first.

When you feel confident Shimano SPD or LOOK KEO Easy are a good place to begin. They’re not super difficult to get in and out of and they won’t break the bank. Shimano even make SPDs that allow you to clip in on one side and use your normal shoes on the other. Win win!  (P.S. Pedals come with cleats inside the box, you don’t have to buy them separately.)

buying your first road bike clipless pedals toe clipsbuying your first road bike clipless pedals toe clips look keo easy pedals

Alternatively, get yourself some toe-clips like these:
buying your first road bike lipless pedals toe clips

Size and the worst bike buying faux pas
Size is tough. A Specialized or Bianchi 52 could be a Cube or Focus 48. A Giant Medium could be a Trek Medium/Large. Every brand has a different way of measuring and a well fitting bike doesn’t just rely on the standover height.  Think about reach, saddle height, stem length, bar width etc.
If you’re going to buy online at internet prices then don’t expect shop service too. There are plenty of size-guides online and they can come close but they’ll never get you the best fitting bike.
You get a well-fitting bike by buying face-to-face but don’t be a sizer.*

*A sizer is somebody who will milk a shop for advice and then buy online. A sizer is everybody’s least favourite customer and not only can you spot them a mile off, but you never forget them either!
Trust us, you’re going to want to make friends with your local bike shop. They’ll save your butt countless times and your bank balance in the long-run.

Buying a Helmet
Your skid lid is essential. Whether you’re for or against them, you won’t really be welcome on your club-run without one and they’re a requirement for most (if not all) sportive, charity and race events.
Don’t worry about how it looks, other cyclists won’t think twice about how your helmet doesn’t compliment the shape of your head or how the colour clashes with your eyes. We all wear them and it will protect your head.
buying your first road bike helmet Kask mojitobuying your first road bike helmet lazer blade
You can pick something up for £30-40 like the Lazer Beam Helmet but if you really want something suave go for the Kask Mojito. Lightweight, aerodynamic, comfortable and about £120. They come in loads of colours and you can replace it for half price if you have a crash.

What Cycling Shorts Should I buy?
If you’re going to be pedalling a few miles then a decent pair of shorts is as essential for your arse as your helmet is for your head.
Saddle soreness isn’t nice, especially half way around a 100 miler or one day in to a three day endurance ride.  Good shorts with a chamois pad make a huge difference and there are loads to choose from.  Expect to pay anything from £20 upwards.
We like Chapeau’s Classic Bibs. They sent us some to try and we were impressed. Comfy, quality and good-looking. (£69.99) and they come in Men’s and Women’s.
buying your first road bike bib shorts chapeau ladies_classic_bibshort_black_white_left

  • Bib shorts come up over your shoulders, waist shorts don’t.
  • Shorts start above the knee, longs or ‘tights’ at the ankle.
  • Leg warmers/knee warmers are good for a shorts day with a cold start/finish.
  • The ‘Chamois’ is the padding

There is no better time to start cycling, it is great for your health and is so much fun. You also get to be a part of your local cycling community. Most areas have a local club open to all abilities and theres loads of events across the UK to keep you busy. We’re sure you’re going to love cycling and we hope that our buying guide helped you towards your first road bike.

Fancy A Cyclocross Bike? – Find our Guide Here

Follow us on Twitter HERE | @CDFcyclist

Cyclopaedia  |  Sunset Cycles  | Damien Harris Cycles  | Bike Shed Wales  |
Don Skene Cycles  |  Muddy Bum Bikes

The Things We Carry: Inside Our Bags

Things we carry in our bag cycling cyclist cardiff cyclopaedia kryptonite evoc cycle couriera

We’re a nosy bunch here at Cardiff Cyclist.  We want to know what you carry with you on your bike and thought that we would share the contents of our courier bags too.

We use EVOC courier bags because they are really hardwearing and you can stick stickers on them (like our City Surf and Velo Ink ones). EVOC bags are pocket-central with uber useful and well-designed compartments for all your bike/non-bike stuff and as well as being comfortable, they look wicked too!

Things we carry in our bag cycling cyclist cardiff cyclopaedia kryptonite evoc cycle courier bone shaker magazine park tool

So here goes! We emptied one of our bags and included everything we found with the exception of a snotty tissue and an empty chewing gum wrapper… (don’t judge us)

cardiff cyclist what is in our cycle courier bag kryptonite bone shaker magazine

what is in our EVOC courier bag bone shaker magazine city surf kryptonite
what is in our EVOC courier bag bone shaker magazine city surf kryptonite

Note: The best pencils in the world are PALOMINO Blackwing, closely followed by Free IKEA ones.


what is in our EVOC courier bag bone shaker magazine city surf kryptonite

Want to show us inside your bag?

Tweet: @CDFcyclist

AW15: How To Ride The Commute (Four Tips to Get Going in Winter)

moon ring rear light cycling bike lights cyclopaedia cardiff bike shop
This week we dusted off our lights, dug out our gloves and spent at least ten minutes every morning wishing it was August… or Spain.

We also got chatting about those really dark, rainy days and how we motivate ourselves to get our butts in the saddle for the 8am commute.

  1. P.M.A  (Positive Mental Attitude)
    100% cliché – 100% effective.  Never underestimate the power of positive affirmation. Approach the front door with confidence, march yourself into your day and be proud of yourself. Its tough to get going in the rain – you’re awesome.
  2. Be Prepared / Find Your Groove
    When its cold and rainy the last thing you need is to be stressed out as well. Running late on two wheels in the rain is no fun at all and can be a recipe for all kinds of trouble on the road.  As the months draw towards winter we find it really useful to get our morning ‘groove’ going.  We keep our winter essentials to hand and try our best not to loose our keys/helmet/shoes. 
  3. Pack Spare Socks
    If its super rough out there, pack pants as well.
     Winter roads show no mercy to those without overshoes and even less to those without mudguards. Unfortunately, there’s nothing sexy about a brown, soggy bum and squeaky feet. (Yet…) 
  4. Remember
    Cycling is great for your health and the planet. You don’t have to sit in traffic, you get free parking, you are your own engine, you can go fast or slow and you’ll arrive at work feeling invigorated.  No matter how soaked you get, you can always change your clothes.
    Cycling is awesome and  you’re a champion.

Need some lights & mudguards? Visit your local bike shop:
Cyclopaedia  |  Sunset Cycles  | Damien Harris Cycles  | Bike Shed Wales  |
Don Skene Cycles  |  Muddy Bum Bikes

Want to buy the same lights as us?
Find the front HERE and the back HERE.

bike lights cardiff cyclist cygolite cinelli bar tape

What is a Cyclocross Bike? (and why I ride one)

2016 Focus Mares AX 105 Cyclocross Bike What is a Cyclocross Bike?
The only time Jen has ever won a race was when she brought it home for Red House in the egg and spoon age 7.
Still, you very well may see her at a cyclocross race, but she’ll be just about as far from the start line as is humanly possible.  Probably helping out or milling around near the cakes.

2016 Focus Mares AX 105 Cyclocross Bike What is a Cyclocross Bike?(Jif Cyclocross race @ Llanishen High School – September 2015)

Now,  a cyclocross bike could be for you whether you are a cyclocross-ist or not. Jen rides a 2016 Focus Mares AX Cyclocross bike, but until this year she didn’t know anything about them.

Expect a cross bike to have drop handlebars and geometry like a road bike but have bigger tyres (and usually more knobbly).  Cross bikes tend to have cantilever or disc brakes and essentially, they’re for going fast off-road.

2016 Focus Mares AX 105 Cyclocross Bike What is a Cyclocross Bike?(Pic: A cyclocross bike underneath a cyclocross-ist at a local race 2015)

CDFcyclist HQ is (currently) a first floor apartment in Cardiff that does not lend itself well to bicycle storage. Thus, we try to keep our total bikes to 2 (and a trailer):

– A pub/town bike (below)
For leaving locked up, going to the pub, shopping, looking hip.

2016 Focus Mares AX 105 Cyclocross Bike What is a Cyclocross Bike?
– An adventuring / Best bike (below)
Going fast, mountain riding, touring, adventuring, exploring,
going up the Afan Valley doing bunny hops etc.)
2016 Focus Mares AX 105 Cyclocross Bike What is a Cyclocross Bike?

With varying cycling hobbies and limited space we really needed a steed that would allow us to do it all, or at least as much as possible.  Cyclocross bikes are diverse and adaptable machines.
Pick one with rack mounts to add cargo, put slicky tyres on and ride the road, or blast trails and churn up the mud off-road.
Cross bikes really aren’t just for tough-cookies, Belgians and racing cyclists.

Jen  | @CDFcyclist

Speak to your local bike shop for more advice on buying a cross bike.

Cyclopaedia  |  Sunset Cycles  | Damien Harris Cycles  | Bike Shed Wales

2016 Focus Mares AX 105 Cyclocross Bike What is a Cyclocross Bike?
(Pic: A cyclocross bike underneath a cyclocross-ist at a local race 2015)

Delightfully Gourmet Bespoke Shops (Bikes, Cycling and Otherwise)

I am a sucker for great branding and quality products. I love scouring the web for gourmet shops offering bespoke products, sometimes affordably, sometimes.. not.

Here are the best bespoke bicycle / bicycling shops right now.. (in my opinion, anyway)

Squid Bikes //  Rad Bikes – Hand Made in California
www.squidbikes.comsquid bikes cardiff cyclist cycling wales gourmet bespoke online shops  Established 2014 in Sacramento, Squid Bikes is a rider-owned company united by a passion of everything bike.
From doodling with sharpies to building all-round performance machines for all types of cycling.  These bikes are mouthwateringly delicious!
Check out their website HERE   |  Twitter: @SquidBikes

Tom Sturdy Cycles // 
Bespoke Bikes Built in the Brecon Beacons, Wales UK.

Tom Sturdy Cycles Brecon Wales Cardiff Cyclist Delightful Bespoke Online Bike Shops

With a first class honours degree in Aeronautical Engineering and a masters degree in Sports Biomechanics, not only does Tom Sturdy know his stuff, but he’s also held multiple titles as a triathlete, managed a bicycle workshop, been a brand manager and worked in product development & design.

From his Brecon Beacons workshop, Tom designs, engineers, manufactures, paints and assembles to spec – all under one roof!
If you like clean lines, custom contraptions, innovation, and delicious design then this is one not to miss.
Check out the website HERE   |  Twitter: @SturdyCycles  |   Facebook |

Neil Stevens Prints – Crayon Fire Shop 
Cycling Prints, Designed in the UK.
neil stevens prints cycling cardiff cyclist best online bike shopsAmongst other things Neil Stevens designs some kickass cycling prints. Everything in the web shop is printed on high white smooth 315gsm uncoated paper which he informs us is a great weight for a wall print.
Printed by Ripe Digital ‘down in the west country, UK’ – these prints look good, support local and we really really want one on the wall.

Check out the Web Shop HERE  |  Twitter: @Neil_A_Stevens

Boneshaker Magazine

Boneshaker magazine cardiff cyclist cycling best bike shop cycles100% gourmet and delicious.
Boneshaker magazine started out as a series of scribbles on the back of a napkin in a café in Bristol, UK.
This mag is a firm fave at Cardiff Cyclist – a trifecta of beautiful design, content and a feel-good ethos.  (They’ve got a sweet online shop too!)

Read Boneshaker Magazine to feel excited about cycling!

Visit them online HERE  | Twitter: @boneshakermag

If that isn’t enough for you take a look at this:

Pride in Proper |
pride in proper cardiff cyclist best online shops cyclingNot bike related, but definitely lovely and gourmet. (We’ve got a  PinP ‘WATER THE PLANTS’ print on the wall already.)

What to Read: Bicycle Diaries – David Byrne

David Byrne Bicycle Diaries Cardiff Cyclist

David Byrne: Scottish-born American musician, cycling champion and founding/principal member of arguably DEFINITELY the best band of all time; Talking Heads

Now, if you have never shredded out a few air bass riffs along to Psycho Killer then I urge you to stop reading this and get your groove on for a few bars:

Bicycle Diaries is less a book about cycling and more a book in which cycling is.
Over the last thirty years as well as using a bicycle as his principal mode of transport in New York City, Byrne has taken a folding bike along on music tours and cycled all over the world. He has gained an impressive insight into urban life – all from the saddle.

Just as he explores the likes of Berlin, Buenos Aires, Istanbul, Manila and Sydney using a bicycle, he uses this delightfully straightforward book to explore what seem to be topics of great interest to him; the arts, architecture, decay, music, politics, and quality of life.

With a title that ironically echoes Che Guevara’s ‘Motorcycle Diaries’, this part manifesto/part diary  is really one to read but beware, you’ll be browsing eBay for a folder before you’re finished.

Good Stuff: Byrne doesn’t harp on about Talking Heads – Time, Place.
Not so good Stuff: Mildly self-indulgent, still undeniably likeable.

** Shop local : contact @WellfieldBooks1 for your copy. **
Est. 1982. For all your reading needs. 16 Wellfield Road, Roath, Cardiff.
Tel: 02920483106 / E-mail: