ZenCog Bicycle Company: Riverside's Bike Shop.

Salsa Bikes Adventure Package

Itching to get back in the saddle as the Florida weather finally cools down? Can’t choose between gravel grinding, lightweight touring, and tearing up singletrack? Do you just really hate making decisions?

Salsa Cycles just announced the bike deal of the century for adventure cyclists hungry to overhaul their stables. Snag this year’s Bucksaw, Salsa’s fat bike/full suspension monster terrain tackler, and get the 2017 Vaya for….free. (Ok, technically it’s an extra 99 cents. Basically go easy on your next Taco Bell run, and congratulate yourself with Salsa’s standard-setting light touring bike.)

This deal comes in three great flavors from $3999.99 to $6499.99. You bet your boots there’s a carbon option.

This deal expires on September 30th, 2016, or when the stash runs out. Get the full details over at the Salsa website, then give us a call. 904-619-0496. Your next bikes are waiting.

 

ZenCog’s August Promo – Helmets! U-locks! Bears! Oh, my!

ZenCog Specials Aug 2016 - FB

Promos good through August 31, 2016 – Test rides always FREE. Come see us in Riverside on the corner of Stockton and College.

Philanthropy Bike Build with Mercedes-Benz

On Thursday, December 17th, Garf, Matt, and Katie headed up to Amelia Island to spend the day at the Ritz-Carlton with the Mercedes-Benz sales team for their holiday team-building retreat.

We helped them plan a philanthropic bike build for the kids over at Hubbard House, which provides support services for victims of domestic violence and their families. We loved their idea to help kids and teens who could use a spot of sunshine over the holidays.

Split into competing teams, the folks from Mercedes-Benz raced to answer company trivia questions to earn the tools necessary to build two bikes apiece, pass a safety inspection, and speed around an improvised racecourse on the beautiful Ritz-Carlton lawn. In all, the retreat attendees built twelve Evo bicycles. The bikes, plus accompanying helmets, are headed to Hubbard House, for moms to gift to their kids, from preschool-age to high-schoolers.

Thank you, Mercedes-Benz, for sharing your holiday spirit with us and with Jacksonville’s future bike-riders!


 

Looking for a fun and challenging team-building exercise in Jacksonville, Florida? We love to work with companies and nonprofits to give back to our community. Contact us at ridebikes@zencog.com for event inquiries.

All photos © Copper Coin Photography 2015.

 

Small Business Saturday 2015

Grizzly bear, alaskan brown bear,

As ZenCog Beliebers, you’re supporting a locally-owned and independent small business. We have strong ties to our small-biz brethren here in Jacksonville, so for this year’s Small Business Saturday (and the whole holiday weekend), we’re offering a 15% discount on any single in-stock accessory, when you show us your receipt for $15 or more spent at another local small business between Thanksgiving and Monday, 11/30/15.

Did you grab a bag of beans at Brew or Bold Bean? Buy a festive round at Rain Dogs? Pay your self-employed lawn guy for this month’s weed eradication? Snag an amazing grizzly bear conversation piece at the corner antique shop? Just show us your receipt (digital or printed) and take 15% off your purchase of any in-stock helmet, light set, rack, basket, or other accessory. This weekend only, so go see any of Jacksonville’s fine independent retailers, service providers, or entrepreneurs, then come see us. Holiday shopping double-whammy.

Bike Accidents and the Law: How to Protect Yourself After the Fact

Broken hub photo courtesy of Flickr user DrockSays

What to Do After a Bike/Car Crash

by Christopher Burns, Esq.

Most of the time, riding a bike brings beauty, independence, joy, and healthy living. Rarely, bicycling can turn into disappointment or worse, tragedy. People riding bicycles are frequently in the midst of traffic which is massively bigger and heavier than the cyclists and their equipment. Trucks, cars, SUVs – they are sometimes operated by drivers who have little awareness or concern for us. We cyclists are largely unprotected, except for our helmets and the thinnest layer of clothing, and with hope that motorists will operate their vehicles safely with us in mind.

When you, as a cyclist, are involved in a collision with a vehicle, it is important you be prepared to protect your rights. Here are some extremely important steps to follow:

Report the Incident to Authorities.

Always report the crash to the police, even if you don’t think you are hurt and your bike appears largely undamaged. Florida law says: If you are in a crash with a vehicle where 1) you are hurt, or 2) there is damage to anybody’s property which exceeds $500, you MUST report the crash, but even seemingly minor bumps or bike damage can add up quickly. Furthermore, having a police report made often goes a long, long way to gaining credibility with the opposing party’s insurance company. If you don’t report the accident, insurance companies often disbelieve the accident really happened. Or even worse – the at-fault party to the accident may change his/her story later, shifting the blame to you, making it a “he said”/“she said” situation. Now, the insurance companies may believe the cyclist caused the crash.

I have represented many clients who felt they were not injured at the scene of the crash, but then realized they were injured in the next day or two. When you have been in a crash, you may feel an adrenaline surge or be in shock. You may not realize the extent of your injuries until later.

Similarly, it is not easy to tell how much damage is done to bikes at the scene. Some bicycles are made of carbon fiber. It is nearly impossible to determine the extent of their damage just by a visual inspection. Sometimes bike damage is not obvious until the bike shop inspects. An experienced mechanic may find damage that jeopardizes the integrity of the frame or wheels. Report the crash if there is any possibility of damage to your bicycle.

Report your crash even if it involves you and a dog, or was caused by a hole in the road or metal grating. If your crash was caused by a dog or other animal, report the incident to Animal Control.

Even when not required by law, reporting the crash is critical to preserving your rights. The crash report will document important facts about your crash, such as the road conditions, the weather, the eyewitnesses to the crash, and will usually contain a diagram of the crash scene. If the other party to the crash acted improperly, reporting the crash will likely result in the other party receiving a traffic citation. If you can, try to find out the identity of eyewitnesses to your crash. Obtain the names, addresses and telephone numbers of witnesses. Police officers frequently do only superficial investigations, and don’t bother to take the names of all the witnesses. Don’t rely on the police officer to do this! After the witnesses leave the scene, you may never see them again.

Listen to what the other party says about the incident. But don’t say anything yourself – until you must speak to the police officer.

Don’t say anything to the other party about how the crash happened. Anything you say may be used against you later on. Never make a statement apologizing for the crash or accepting part of the blame. It is not fair for an assessment of fault to be made right then, before the whole sequence of events has been analyzed. If another party to the crash makes a statement about his/her fault, remember this statement and write it down as soon as you can.

Preserve the condition of your bike, helmet, clothing, lighting, bags, and other property.

We cyclists love to ride our bikes! If you aren’t too badly injured, you might want to go straight to the bike shop, and have your bike fixed on the spot. Don’t do it! Damage to your bike is evidence. Altering the evidence via cleaning or repair could compromise your rights. The bike damage may prove how the crash took place. Also, before the at-fault party’s insurance pays for your bike damage, it may insist on inspecting your bike…or helmet, clothes, etc. You must give that insurance party the chance to see the damage – the insurance company won’t just trust what you told them happened.

Carefully photograph your bike in its exact condition after the accident. Make sure you don’t leave your damaged bike outside, or in some storage place where its condition deteriorates. Keep it in your garage, or at the bike shop, with strict instructions that the condition not be disturbed. Keep your sweaty, torn, or bloody clothes, your helmet, a scraped wristwatch, scuffed shoes, your gloves, your sunglasses or prescription eyewear—everything, just the way it was after the crash.

Report the crash to YOUR car insurance company as soon as possible, but don’t communicate with the other party’s insurance company! 

If your bicycle crash involved a truck or car, you may be entitled to receive certain benefits from your own car insurance. It sounds strange—why would your own auto insurance owe you benefits if you weren’t in your car? Even though you weren’t driving a car, under Florida law your car insurance will be obligated to pay you “PIP” (no-fault) benefits, to the extent you incur medical bills or lose wages by being unable to work. Your car insurance may also have to provide you with “uninsured motorist” benefits. Your insurance agent is obligated to explain to you all of the potential benefits to which you may be entitled. But it’s better for this explanation to be given to your lawyer. Furthermore, the lawyer will request and receive an entire copy of your policy to make sure you are being offered all of the potential benefits available to you. Then have your lawyer help you fill out the necessary insurance forms to begin receiving Florida “PIP” benefits.

However, DO NOT talk to the other party’s insurance company about the accident or your injuries. Particular, do not let them record your statement! Your comments can be used against you.

When you go to the hospital or doctor, ask them to submit your medical bills to your auto insurance, and if you have it, your health insurance – on every claim.

Under Florida law, your car insurance is “primary,” meaning it must pay for your medical bills first, and then your private health insurance must pay. Believe it or not, the at-fault party to the accident (the other driver) does not have to pay these medical bills at first – nor does his/her auto insurance.

There is a saving grace to this: your auto insurance cannot cancel you or raise your rates because you were in an accident that was not your fault. Your insurance company must pay these benefits. It’s only fair, since you have paid expensive premiums to the auto insurance company to have these benefits.

Keep the accident documentation given to you by the police officer, and give it to your attorney

In a bike-car crash, the investigating police officer will usually take information from the other party identifying that party’s car insurance company. This information will then be placed in the written crash report. If the crash involved a dog, you should learn who owned the dog, and information about the owner’s homeowners insurance. If the crash was caused by a dangerous condition, such as a bridge grating or loose drainage cover, find out who is responsible for this property, and report it to your attorney.

Document your physical condition and injuries

Take photographs of your bumps, bruises, road rash and scabs. Make sure they can be given to your attorney. Some of my prior clients have taken photos on their phone, but then lost them or were unable to move them, or they were really terrible quality. If you must have a cast, use crutches, or wear a splint, keep these items, and have photographs made of you using these things. Consider writing a diary of any activities you can’t perform, and the aches and pains you feel. Months down the road you’ll forget about all this.

Photograph the location of the crash

Take photographs or video of the place where the crash happened, even if there are no markings on the road to indicate the crash occurred. Roads are resurfaced, widened, and new signs put up all the time. The conditions of the road when you had your crash may be changed by road construction soon thereafter. Get photographs before the crash scene changes. If there are marks or debris left by the accident, photograph it. After the first rain storm, most of the marks may be gone forever. Police reports don’t usually do a good job of identifying marks, unless the crash involves a death or very, very serious injuries.

Don’t ignore traffic citations

If you were issued a traffic citation while riding your bicycle, you have more choices than just paying the ticket. Under Florida law, if you pay a ticket without contesting it, your record will indicate you were “guilty” of the offense. Alternatively, you have the right to contest the ticket or try to work out a plea of “without adjudication.” If you contest your ticket and win, no fine or costs will be assessed. If you reach an agreement of “withhold adjudication,” you will be required to pay court costs, but there will be no record of “guilty.” Contact a lawyer to help you with your ticket right away. There is always a deadline in preserving your rights to contest the ticket. The deadline can be as short as 30 days or less.

Don’t discuss the accident or your injuries on Facebook or any social network

Don’t talk about the crash on your Facebook account – this can never help your claim and may hurt it. Talk to your attorney for more advice on this subject. A resourceful insurance claims adjuster or defense attorney may use these sites to obtain information regarding you or your claim which is very potentially harmful. For example, your page might be scoured for photos posted after your accident, to evaluate how active you can be. These photos could be misinterpreted. Or you might write to a friend that you are recovering nicely from your injuries. But in fact, this may be you giving an optimistic portrayal of your injuries and not a realistic portrayal. The private contents of an individual’s social networking website may be subject to the subpoena power of the courts, and the courts may insist that you disclose this information to the opposing party to your claim. Understand that everything you post on such a site is probably going to be seen by the insurers or attorneys fighting your claim.

Consult with a reputable attorney – ASAP

Crashes may have ramifications in traffic court, criminal court or civil court. There are time deadlines on most claims with which you must comply or your rights could be terminated. You should at least meet with an attorney to discuss your rights in all three courts. This attorney should have significant expertise in not just personal injury cases, but bicycle crash cases, and should have handled bicycle crash claims in the past. Most reputable attorneys will meet with you free of charge. After an initial consultation, you can decide better whether you have any need for an attorney.

Chris Burns, Cycling Attorney

Chris Burns, Cycling Attorney

Chris Burns

Terrell Hogan
233 East Bay Street – 8th Floor
Jacksonville, Florida 32202

Ph. 904-632-2424

chris@floridacyclinglaw.com
floridacyclinglaw.com

Chris Burns is the chairman of the Jacksonville Bicycle Pedestrian Advisory Committee as well as a consultant to the Florida Bicycle Association and a past officer and board member. He has been an attorney specializing in helping bicycle and pedestrian accident victims for over thirty years. Initial consultations are always free of charge.

Consignment: Swobo Mountaineer Single Speed Mountain Bike

Swobo Mountaineer Single Speed Rigid Mountain Bike (Suspension-ready)

Measurements:
Frame Size XS
20.9 in top tube
14 in seat tube

The Mutineer steps away from what a lot of people think Swobo bikes should be and that’s what we were shooting for. When we showed the prototype around, several folks asked what it was for. When they rode it, it didn’t take long for them to find the answers. It’s not a city bike. It’s not meant for streets. Born on the short track and on the trails around Fort Collins, it’s a single speed mountain bike built on the 27.5” wheel platform. Belt drive compatible. Suspension corrected geometry. A build kit that is ready to rock.

Components:
Surly Troll XS

Upgrades:


Accessories included:

Color: Black Matte

Condition: Excellent/New Demo Model

Price: $700.00 

Built by ZenCog: Co-Motion Pangea Touring Bike

Eugene, Oregon-based Co-Motion Cycles is one of our favorite American-made bicycle brands. They’re as nuts as we are about high-quality bikes that do their job, no muss no fuss. This winter, we got to do a pair of ground-up builds of Co-Motion Pangea Rohloff-hub steel touring rigs for a young couple who are looking forward to some North American and European bike tours. They opted for the Co-Pilot upgrade for the Pangeas, so the frames have stainless steel couplers, allowing them to break down small enough to fit into standard airline-checkable luggage—definitely a practical approach to keeping your travel costs down on a bike tour budget.

Each bike includes the Rohloff hub with internal gearing—keeping shifting smooth and low-maintenance, a Schmidt low-drag dynamo front hub that powers the headlight and integrated USB charger, Dajia Euro-style trekking bars, and a Gates CenterTrack carbon belt drive.

We always love when customers have something out-of-the-ordinary in mind, and are willing to take the time to get everything exactly right. Come see us about your next project — whether you’re planning a Florida bike tour, a Jax-to-San Diego Southern tier bike tour, or headed to Spain to start a European bike tour.

 

Pangea Rohloff

An outstandingly rugged, 26” wheeled touring bike that is perfect for our shrinking world. The Pangea has all the features you need for touring in the most challenging of environments. Far from a mountain bike with a drop bar, the Pangea is designed with the stable, responsive touring geometry that has made Co-Motion an industry leader.

  • Super-duty, extra-large diameter Reynolds 725 Steel tubing and rock-steady hand-built touring fork
  • Long chain-stays, wide tire clearance and 135mm rear axle
  • Room for fat tires and fenders, plus fittings for three bottles, front and rear racks, and the toughness you need for your global touring expedition
  • Larger head tube with internal Chris King Inset headset

Feb 28: Intro to Bike-Packing

Swing by Jacksonville’s best bike shop on Saturday, Feb 28 at 3pm for a free roundtable discussion about bike-packing and bike touring! Todd and Rosie of Roam the Woods are prepared to take you through the basics of planning, preparing for, and undertaking a bike tour or off-road bike-packing adventure. Check out their bikes and setups they used on their Great Divide tour, and ask all your pressing questions about self-supported touring logistics. What do bears eat, again?

About Roam the Woods

At Roam, we believe in the “Hike your own Hike” philosophy. We bring an informal classroom to the outdoors, teaching you basic skills to enjoy the backcountry safely and confidently. A trip in the woods should be a nice backpacking vacation. Our mission is to provide high quality, economically-conscious, women-focused backpacking courses. Utilizing the wilderness, participants build on and continue to develop self-reliance and confidence in a non-judgmental, supportive group setting. At Roam we learn by doing, slowly building up responsibility as group and individual confidence levels increase. We believe this is your experience and the energy you put in will be a direct result of what is gained from any course with our program. 

 

Get Hitched at ZenCog

hitch, trailer hitch, bike rack hitch, car rack, bike rack, yakima, kuat, thule

So you’re in love. You go everywhere together, and it’s heart-rending when you’re apart for too long. We know the feeling. That’s why we decided to let you take the plunge with us!

You can now get hitched right here at ZenCog!

Once you’ve made the decision, we offer a personal consultation to discover exactly what will work best for both of you (or heck, all four of you). We’ve done all the research, squared away the paperwork, and created a smooth, full-service experience. We’ll do all the legwork and invite you back once everything’s ready to go on the big day.

Then, just drop off your car, pop down to Bold Bean for a leisurely coffee break, and come back to a securely-installed hitch, ready for the bike rack of your choice…from Saris, Thule, Yakima, or perhaps Küat. Simple as that! You + your bikes, 2gether 4ever. Love is sweet.

For more info on our customized hitch installation, call Jacksonville’s most romantic bike shop at 904-619-0496.

State of the Bike Shop 2015

bike shop owner, cyclist, presidential, Garf Cooper, Surly, Surly Ice Cream Truck, Fat Bike

State of the ‘Cog 2015

Last month’s State of the Union address got our gears turning, and we thought we’d do a little year-in-review of all the great ZenCoggery that took place last year, and hazard a few predictions for 2015.

So, my fellow Jacksonvillians,

We are five years into the life of our shop. So first is an expression of love and gratitude to ALL of our customers. You guys bought more bikes, components, and accessories, and got more shit fixed in the first eight months of 2014 as you did in ALL of 2013. Loyal folks who spread the word to their friends that we provide a great service, with syrup on top, are how we stay in business to keep doing what we do.

Our goal is to offer bikes that align with our mission: to introduce more people to everyday cycling with practical options like cargo- and child-carrying capabilities, and to help people incorporate cycling into their lifestyles, by outfitting cyclists for bike touring and bike commuting in Jacksonville. We researched and added several new bike lines, with more under consideration.

First, Detroit Bikes, a boutique made-in-America steel bike manufacturer based in — you guessed it — Motor City, USA. They’re committed to building bikes domestically while maintaining an accessible price point.

We also introduced Biria, a cycling company with German roots, with a unique “Easy Boarding” city model with a very low stepover, great for folks with joint stiffness or hip flexibility issues.

For those of you with a thirst for belt drives, internal hubs, and titanium, check out our new line Spot Brand Bicycles for road, cross, and mountain.

We’re now Jacksonville’s exclusive Kona dealer! They have a really great range, from practical commuters to rugged mountain bikes.

Most recently, we got hold of Co-Motion Cycles, an Oregon-built bike company that shares some core values with ZenCog: high on performance, low on hype, with a homegrown spirit and a dedication to integrating bikes into daily life. They offer some of the most bulletproof touring, cyclocross, commuter, road, and adventure models available, with a variety of tandem, tandem+, and airline-friendly options, along with fully customizable paint finishes.

These are all in addition to our time-tested lines including Linus, KHS, 3G, Vilano, and of course our old favorite Surly Bikes. Come on in to check out all the great stuff we’re getting into — we’re here to offer our advice and guidance. First step is always just helping you identify your cycling style and goals.

Now trending: bike tours! We’ve been busy around the shop getting cycle tourists outfitted for tours large and small. In 2014, we built and customized more touring rigs than we did all the way up through 2013! Folks are headed to the West Coast, Canada, South America, across Europe, to the Keys, and even all the way to Japan. We’re stoked about the upswing in people getting in to bike touring. It’s really the best.

Back on the homefront, maybe you noticed we’ve been spiffing up? Not only do we have some new custom built-in storage in the shop (thanks to Matt of our Southeast Alaskan friends Alcan Outfitters), we got a brand new logo in 2014! Karen Kurycki of CMYKaren, based over at CoRK Arts District, pulled out the big guns, taking cues from our classic “ensō” branding and bringing it all together with a logo that really comes full circle. We’re finally introducing new ZenCog-branded gear and you’ve pretty much run through our hat inventory. Keep an eye out for restocks and new shop tees soon, and get in touch if you’re interested in pre-ordering a ZenCog cycling kit later this year.

If you’re reading this, you’re already enjoying our rebuilt website, also a new addition in 2014. So far it’s been super helpful in helping us get the word out about new inventory and talking about upcoming events, not to mention introducing you to our staff of weirdos. Thanks to Katie at Storycrafted for the website build and content services.

The shop and our staff are gung-ho for community events. Anything that brings neighbors together and gets us outside contributing to our hometown is A-OK in our books. Over the last year, we hosted and sponsored a bunch of great events, including the Sweet Water Pub Crawl (raising funds for the St. Johns Riverkeeper), Up the River Downtown (ditto), the Dirty Duval Bike Olympics III, Bikes Beers & Brats, Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day, two Jax ReCycle bike refurb days, and a handful of hands-on bike skills workshops and bike wash fundraisers.

Three and a half years of weekly rides in, we officially passed the 1500 mile mark with the Saturday morning family R.A.M. Ride. If you haven’t joined us yet, please do! It’s a great way to get comfortable with road riding, introduce your kids to cycling, learn bike-handling and road safety skills, find out about great little places in the community, or just peel you out of bed on a Saturday morning.

Yep, lots of highlights, but running a business always brings learning opportunities. We tried a couple of bike lines that didn’t work out, had a few repairs that took longer than promised, and we’re still looking for my u-lock key. Knowing that in an age of viral Yelp reviews and impromptu Twitter campaigns, when an independent shop like us can be defined by a mistake or a disgruntled customer, we’re grateful to have your continued support, your trust, and your business.

In 2015, we’re looking forward to even more community involvement, honing our focus on bike commuting and bike touring, and finding forever homes for even more of our two-wheeled friends. Maybe we can even outdo our Folio Weekly Best of Jax Runner Up status! (Does that really mean you think we’re one of Jacksonville’s best bike shops?!) We invite you to come talk to us about your bike questions or ideas anytime. And be sure to check here or on Facebook regularly to find out about upcoming events like Intro to Bikepacking on February 28th and Bike Smut in March. Hope to see you here.

My fellow ZenCoggians, “Let’s begin this chapter — together — and let’s start the work right now.”

RIDE BIKES!!

Garfield Cooper, IV
ZenCog Bicycle Company