Mistical Sunday Morning

Storewide 7% Sale

Now till August 7th with coupon

With a minimum order of $10, use coupon code


for 7% off any order up to $900. Use it again and again, send boxes full of riv parts to friends. Stock up on brake pads, pine tar, irish straps, water bottles, tires, toobs, bar tape & stuff you’ll buy later anyways when prices are higher and CA sales tax is 15% and you don’t have this super coupon. And most orders over $75 ship free, so there’s that… click here to go straight to new stuff and check the new web specials!

Expires soon.

These are a few of my favorite things

 I like all of our stuff, or we wouldn’t sell it. Well——not quite true. I don’t like the corkish grips. That stuff feels like a handful of foamy chemicals to me, and although I liked fat-handled Jackie Robinson and Nelson Fox bats when I played baseball, I like skinny grips on handlebars. If you need the cush, you need higher handlebars more. I think the yellow/gray/or white tape with amber shellac looks great and feels fantastically thin and gritty…but that’s not on the mark for a list of favorites, since it’s a small generic thing + a treatment.

  1. SaddleSacks. I live in and out of these every day, open and close them at least six times a day, between shopping, commuting, carrying stuff from here to there. We had a few snaps crap out on the removable flapstraps, then perhaps overreacted and had our maker rivet the straps on, and that was a mistake, because now you have to dig underneath the bag to unbuckle it. If you bought a bag in the last month, maybe it’s riveted. Send your address to miesha@rivbike.com and she’ll hook you up  with a snapstrap in about a month (we ordered more, it takes time). Still, these bags are as good as saddlebags get, and we’re really proud of them.
  2. Mark’s Rack. Every sidepull or centerpull bike needs one of these.     It holds a Medium Wald basket (goes well with our new Captain Hook Net), and makes your bike useful. I’d count the Med Wald basket in there, too, as a favorite.                                                                        
  3. Stripey undies. When the temperature here dips below 85, that’s what I wear. Women buy then as pajama bottoms. I’ve used them in hotel pools as swimming trunks, and nobody knew.
  4. Silver shifters. There are so many good shifters around, and if you have some you like, absolutely don’t switch. BUT if you’re starting from scratch and can shift without indexing (it’s so easy), and don’t mind like once a week or so snugging the wing-bolt to keep it from slipping, and aren’t sweating from having read the word “slipping,” and promise not to overcrank the wingbolt and crack the washer beneath it (it takes a lot to crack it), then you can’t do better.   The sentiment here lately is that many riders don’t know how to snug the bolt, and half of those who do will wronch on it and crack the washer (we have extras and it still works with a cracked washer!)…so there has been an internal movement to not even recommend this (in my opinion) slickest shifter in the world, with the two-way power ratchet. But it still belongs on my short list of fav things, and is one of the things I’m most proud of putting out there from Rivendell.
  5. Bosco or Albatross bars. For retrofits, go Bosco on mountain bikes, Alba on road bikes. These are the bars you’ll stick with once you try them. They’ve changed many bike-rider lives.
  6. Cork Grips. Shellac ‘em second, glue ‘em first. I’d probably like ‘em skinnier, but they feel fine and I feel them at least 45 minutes a day, even in this horrible (by our standards) heat.
  7. ALTUS rear derailer. Twenty-four dollars, monster pulleys, good looks, great function, how can it not be my favorite?
  8. GrabSack. I’ve used it every day of my life for the last 3 years and never wished for a tweak, a different detail.
  9. SPLATS. Funny name, funny look, never taken seriously, but they’re the best rain protection for shoes that I’ve ever used. (also good for saving baby birds)
  10. Trangia stove kit. It IS the stove+potset you’ll end up with and lock in forever if you ever try it. Quiet, windproof, stable, safe, clean, and powerful ENOUGH for anything you’re likely to get into, including snow.
  11. Woolpower socks. It’s hard to think of socks in the heat here, and $18 to $24 is a lot to spend on socks, but these are the best sox I’ve worn.
  12. The Song of Hiawatha. It’s a poem that’s a book and it’s like a novel, too. Should be required reading in gradeschool, but never will be.
  13. Silver Brakes. They work great and look good, but more than anything, they allow good bike designs without cantilevers. Cantilevers are fine, but sometimes a sidepull is just easier
  14. Gransfors Small Forest Ax. Pound-and-a-half head and 19-inch handle make it swingable with one hand or two. It’s not realistic to singe out one axe, but this is the most useful size.


Sam Last Shot Long Time

The Sam Hillborne is our most popular bike ever and is still our most successful, but the ones we have in stock and the ones due in September are going to be the last of them in this form for maybe two years. It will be back exactly like it is, but between now and then we’re going to do some different things, and we aren’t rich enough to do the Sams AND the other things at the same time. It’s a cash flow thing, entirely.


We have lots of all-sage Sams in stock now. It’s as good a solid-color bike as you’ll find, super low key and nice, has Silver frame tubes, everything good just like this brochure says: click here.

And yet…in September we’re getting in even more Sams, but these are the blue+creamers, as shown in the same brochure. We have no preference, colorwise. The Sage ones are lovely and look more delicate, but aren’t. The two-toners are showier but no better.

Sages can turn around and ship fast, blues arrive in September.


Frames In Stock, Ready to Ship

Check out the new Sam brochure here.

58cm - all sage
55cm - all sage
51cm - all sage
48cm - blue/cream

Sage^^^ Very last chance on those. Snatch one of the sages up by phone 800 345 3918 before Friday and we’ll give you a $100 credit.


47cm - 2
63cm - 1

1 unpainted 47 canti saluki

Someone snatch those Homers. No shipping wait time!!!!! Cheviots will likely sell out soon before we get more in November. Will they be orange? I dunno…..

We often get questions regarding the details of our Nitto handlebar fleet. The specs are in our latest & greatest Catalog

We’ve also added them to the handlebar description pages. Enjoy!


The Great Blue Stripey Presale

Remember the purple stripey wool shirt that sold out in Small Medium Large and XL real quick after we introduced them? These much loved ones:


You can still get Xtra Small and DoubleX at this link. More pics there too.

We won’t be reordering purple any year soon, BUT we are doing BLUE!!!!!!!!


Ding ding ding ding ding ding! Brass bells hammerstrike over the horizon, it’s blue! If you can’t hang with King Arthur’s royalest color of majestic mountains or you just didn’t get one while we had them, soon you can own one in the color of the seas, the skies, sad bummers, 12-bar 4/4 time I-IV-V songs, and Homer Hilsens. Blue.

That’s a blue swatch there on the o.g. purple one. Exactly the same good Merino as the purple stuff. Sizing same. This stuff is so good. Maybe not so excited about the old red stripe underpants version on our 100+ degree days out here lately, but the long sleeve crewneck is an excellent campout shirt, cold weather riding shirt, going to the bar shirt, whatever.  Our staff will tell you it’s a perfect cool-morning wrenching shirt. They don’t show stains so you can go karazay with the seatpost grease and bacon fat splats in this shirt. What else is perfect about them? The wool is stretchy and we nailed the fit.

This is our own—can’t get it nowhere else—custom dye lot wool and it’s expensive to buy and we’re not getting a whole bunch, just like last time. Stitched up in San Leandro, California. We predict we’ll sell out rapidly of the common sizes like last time. So instead of selling out on day one, this time we are preselling. The only way to get one is presale because we’ll be ordering the sizes accordingly with a few extras for exchanges.

Place an order here. Please please please just preorder the shirt in a single order without other items. If you want other items, separate orders please. When they come in you’ll have a chance to swap sizes if you change your minds. 

Lock in the $62 price too with preorders. Price might go up when they land. As always with MUSA still a smashing value because we don’t quadruple the cost to get our price and all of our development and marketing is never factored into the cost. Brilliant! Buy factory direct and save!

Preorder here by plunking down $30 bones. Estimated arrival: September.

Last Week to Save 8%

Use coupon code


at checkout for 8% off any order between $200 and $900. If you live in the lower 48 and select the free shipping option, you’ll get an even sweeter deal.

This coupon code expires on the 31st and applies only to in-stock items and orders paid in full.

You can sign up for the newsletter here.

Speaking of lower 48:


This is one of those pics from space! Looking forward to some excursions into the darker parts in months and years to come.


Slingshot class this Sunday MAYBE

The idea is to give kids ages 8 to 14 a class in slingshot making.

We’ll supply the materials and guarantee that they’ll make with a slingshot. At the end of the class we’ll have them shoot mini-marshmallows at garbage can lids, seeing how loud a racket that’ll make.

It’ll be fun and safe, a good experience.

But there’s limited seating. Five is the number.

The class is free BUT BUT BUT to register, you must pay $20  in person by Saturday at 6pm. If you don’t show, we keep the money (we’ll donate it to a local charity, honest. If you do show and your son or daughter completes the class, you get your money back.

If you’d like to know how to make a slingshot but can’t make the class, here are some pics:

1. Find a fork. Buckeys and Walnuts grow lots of them. Pines and eucalyptus and sycamore and most other trees, none. Come to the class and we’ll tell you where you can find local buckeyes, and how to quickly, stealthily, and sustainably harvest a fork.

Then size the fork like this. Chamfer the ends at about 45-degree angle (pocketknife or file). This prevents splits. Cut 1/4-inch grooves around it to hold the rubber.

2. Will here is just digging in.

3. Cut a leather pouch. Cut holes in the ends for the elastic. Good elastic: Surgical tubing 1/4-inch to 3/8-inch, or Alliant No. 7 rubber bands, from Arkansas. If you’ve got another favorite, that’s great—but in the class, this is what we provide. We have some reindeer leather, cow too, and a bit of deer.

4. Here’s Will’s slingshot. It shoots fine! We shot balls of beeswax, but in the class it’ll be tiny marshmallows.

Again: If you want to bring your child or young person, confirm by paying $20 (per student), and you get that money back at the end of class.

It’s at BBH   1601 North Main #101, Walnut Creek. 10 to 1130 am.

A safe, satisying, wholesome, only mildly challenging event. We’ll make sure your student leaves with a slingsghot.

FIVE STUDENTS. Come on down! But register with the $20—

Newer Sam Hillborne Brochure

Dwindling supply of all sizes (except sold-out 62s) in stock. But more of all of them coming next month.

Check out our free Sam Booklet here.