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News / Leif Valin

Sea Otter 2017 / Photo Gallery May 1, 2017




Leif and Sam sent some photos from our Sea Otter trip a couple weekends ago. It looks like they had a good time exploring the area. Sam’s Goodship and Leif’s Rockitship are looking dialed as well.

Visit Bicycle Times Magazine, Cyclocross Magazine and Bicycling for some other write-ups.

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Fairdale Rockitship April 12, 2017


We’re excited to show you the Fairdale Rockitship.


Shortly after launching the Goodship in 2014, we began getting requests for a version that would accommodate racks, fenders, and bigger tires. At our design office, we have to juggle our time between a lot of different projects so we decided to let the idea sit for a while, both so we could think about it, and also because we could see that options for disc brakes and 1x drivetrains were continuing to grow at a rapid pace.

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Builds: Surf Blue Goodship February 3, 2017

In this video, Leif builds up a Surf Blue Goodship with a little help from some friends and a bunny. The bike turned out looking nice with the matching purple grip tape and water-bottle cages.

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Fairdale Goes to the Sun December 30, 2016

We’re always in search for a new adventure, and this time around, we discovered Glacier National Park. Hit play to join Chris Cotsonas, Sandy Carson, Leif Valin, and Alex Hendrex on a ride up Going-to-the-Sun Road.

Visit our VIDEOS PAGE for a bunch of photos from the trip, and make sure to also check out check out No Life Like This Life for some incredible film and panoramic photos from Sandy!

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Fairdale France July 8, 2016

We took Taj Mihelich, Leif Valin, Sandy Carson, and Chris Cotsonas to the French Alps and celebrated Chris’ birthday in one of the best ways imaginable.

Leif rides the Dolores 100 October 8, 2015

Leif_woolie_in_the_trees copyOur team rider Leif  just rode the very exclusive Dolores 100 self-supported mountain bike adventure. The race centered around Dolores, CO and included about 9 billion feet of climbing. He did the ride with his girlfriend (Jonesy Pants) in 12 hours and 20 minutes. Somehow they had energy after the race to stop and do some more riding on the way home in Kenosha Pass and at a friend’s place in Durango. Read more to see some of the wilderness few people get to ride.

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PORCHTIME! June 8, 2015

Leif just built up a new Daybird!

A new model for 2015, the Daybird is our take on a legendary classic. This simple and easy to use 3-speed is available as a step-through (shown) or a Standard model. We didn’t make this bike to win races or jump off roofs, we made this bike so you could enjoy bike riding!

BMX Halloween In Austin October 29, 2014

pumpkin_man-11 copy

Check out Sandy Carson‘s great photo gallery over on ESPN’s X-Games page. You might notice Leif and a Weekender too! Check it out here.

Leif Valin – Mint Weekender April 25, 2014


Leif shows off his Weekender Frame set he built up. The Weekender is turning out be a pretty adaptable platform. With front and rear rack mounts you could sling some racks on here and be off for a weekend camping trip, or carrying bags to school each day. Pop on some fenders and you have a fun way to get to work. The disc brakes will work in any weather condition you come across and the comfortable frame can handle a good range of riding styles.

FYI, Leif is 6’2 and this is a XL Weekender frame with parts to properly size it to him.

Fairdale R+D March 21, 2014

Fairdale Bikes presents a little insight into its highly advanced R & D department. Aerodynamic 2×4 bikes and Fender Bass Bicycle are all put to the test.

CAMERA + EDIT: Francis

Ice is not prejudICE! Fairdale cold weather riding tips December 23, 2013

IMG_0108When the cold arrives and the snow starts to fall a lot of people put their bikes away. That’s a shame because riding in the winter can be surprisingly enjoyable. The quiet blanket of snow over everything and the empty bike paths are a treat to ride. There’s only a few things you need to know before you can be out enjoying your bike in the “worst” kind of weather. Expert winter commuter Leif Valin shares some winter riding tips in the article below….

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Fairdale CHAINtenance guide November 15, 2013


Straight from the work bench of our factory mechanic Leif Valin brings you a write up on how to take care of your chain. This often overlooked component is so crucially important to your bike. Give it a little love and it will make your ride a whole lot nicer. 

Your chain, cogs and chainring(s) are wonderful mechanical components that help propel you forward on your bicycle. A new fresh chain arrives clean and nicely lubed from the factory. Your cogs and chainwheels whirl happily along together, meshing perfectly like soulmated lovers in a fairy tale…

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Fender Defender August 22, 2013


Considering that rain in Austin is a long forgotten memory from the pre-drought era you can hopefully forgive us for never talking about fenders before. In most parts of the world the ground will occasionally get wet and that shouldn’t mean you have to stop riding. Nor does it mean that you should arrive at your destination with a tire splattered mud track across your backside. Having a simple set of fenders equipped on your bike will keep you nice and dry on damp-day rides. There’s several options and our all-weather team rider Leif wrote up a little introduction for one of the most useful bolt on accessories in cycling. -Taj

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F-AIR-Dale- how to ride like the wind! August 1, 2013



One of the easiest ways to keep your bike feeling new and fast is often overlooked by new riders. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen someone riding by the Fairdale office working extra hard because their tires are woefully underinflated. Having the right air pressure will keep you rolling more efficiently and help prevent flat tires. Team rider and expert mechanic Leif Valin wrote up a little primer on tire health.

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Leif’s Custom Build Weekender DropBar May 3, 2013


Leif Valin picked up one of our Weekender Frame and Fork sets and did a cool custom build. Check out how he did it below. Always cool to see how adaptable a frameset can be.

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Leif Valin rides the new Terra-Cotta Coaster April 5, 2013



Leif Valin took our new Terra-Cotta Coaster out for a spin and sent us some nice photos.

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Denver drive to NAHBBS February 28, 2013


Monty and I took a drive from Austin out to Denver to visit Fairdale rider Leif Valin and check out the NAHBBS.

The drive was extremely peaceful since a lot of it is through the desert in West Texas. Took my time and stopped a lot to wander around.

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New Team Rider: LEIF VALIN January 9, 2013

I’m not even gonna’ try to hide it anymore, the people I put on the Fairdale team are really just plain awesome people. It just so happens that their lives are tied to a cycling and that they are really good bike riders. They’re the kind of people you’d want to hang out with even if they didn’t ride bikes… We’re way stoked to announce our new team rider Leif Valin. Truly one of the funniest people in existence and has a lifetime of cycling history. From BMX to bicycle portaging like the photo above, Leif does it all.

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Leif’s Devil’s Head weekday Weekender Ride September 17, 2012

Got my new Kelly Green Weekender on a Wednesday. Put it together with haste rode down to the shop and dialed it in, down to Pablo`s for some coffee and hatched a plan for the next day…

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Idaho Springs to Mt. Evans weekender ride September 14, 2012

Went for a casual ride from Idaho Springs up to the top of Mt.Evans. The climb from 7,540 ft. to 14,264 ft. elevation takes place on the highest paved road in North America. My imaginary girlfriend Cindy came along firmly attached to the top tube of my Weekender. With her additional moral support I was sure I would make it to the top in record casual time. Far more time than the current record holder Tom Danielson’s unreal time of 1hr 41 min and 20 seconds to the top of Mt. Evans from Idaho Springs.

If you ever do this ride you will appreciate how scorchingly fast that time is for the terrain, Dudeman.

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Leif Valin NCR Trail and Heritage Rail ride July 19, 2012

Leif Valin took a nice cruise while out on the East Coast and sent us a little photo essay.

“Good little 45 mile ride from Baltimore to York, mostly under a canopy of trees passing through little towns. I started in Hunt Valley on the NCR trail which later turns in to the Heritage Rail Trail, I suggest this route to anyone around the area or passing through, a stress free scenery filled ride. 

I met some nice people and animals along my ride and my heart was beating the entire time! good day!”


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Leif Valin photos and art April 9, 2012

Leif Valin sent us some photos and art. Enjoy… and check out Pig Log!

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Leif Valin’s Daily Adventure November 18, 2011

Leif Valin wrote a very entertaining story about his daily commute. Leif is surely one our most favorite riders and now he has become one of our favorite writers as well. He puts into words what we see on our daily commute. If it’s by car the best you can hope for is to get home without being more stressed out by terrible drivers. When we make the trip by bike at least you feel like you did something and usually it’s pretty fun.

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Completely random things August 3, 2010

I admit that the Fairdale blog makes no qualms about being random. Full stop. What the hell is a qualm and why am I using that figure of speech?

Here’s a few things I really couldn’t find a place for.

I got asked to design a print for a napkin. I have no idea what should be on a napkin so I drew this and scrapped it because it doesn’t seem very good.

Leif sent this asparagus drawing. This could be on a napkin I think.

Hmmm, maybe this isn’t so random after all. Everyone is talking about food aren’t they?

It might be love. Another submission from Leif and a I’m sure this has a story but I can’t guess what it is.

Found this digging around in some old files. Some shirt art I drew for Dig years and years ago.

And last I’ll leave you with a little animated video Leif sent in. I like the music.

More Leif, and a bike I really want someone to build me. July 23, 2010

A little impromptu collaboration. Leif drew the hairy dude on the left, I got a lady in a rabbit suit on the right.

And would someone please build me this bike!!!