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Gravel - its a thing!

Gravel. It’s a thing. Tickle your wanderlust on the road less travelled, hunt down unsealed routes in the backblocks, and intersect with places and lives you may never have guessed existed. It is the bike world’s newest and most exciting thing that doesn’t have a battery. The reality is it’s actually an old thing. In fact, it’s as old as the bicycle itself. While people were horsing around with tar-based roading before the invention of the chain-driven bike, tarmac wasn’t patented until 1902. By that time the oldest of the classics was in its tenth edition. Precious few roads were sealed, and cycling was already a big sport and a massive pastime. Riding and racing on sealed roads didn’t really...

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Nzo Annual Report to Stakeholders

  2020 is almost over. That is a sentence I quite enjoyed typing. We can finally reveal what we have been up to for the last few months, and what we have planned for 2021 and beyond. This year was weird for almost everybody, us included. We had good supplies of product, at a level of quality we were very happy to offer. Sales were great.  Then the worldwide catastrophe of COVID-19 struck.  Sales became really great. We sold more stuff, a lot more quickly than we expected to (thanks). Not far into the fiasco, we discovered that our method to market (getting stuff to your letterbox) had fallen apart. After 4 excellent years in Hong Kong, sending products to...

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Why is Nzo closed for now?

Excellent question. The new world of COVID - 19 has presented the single weirdest period in our long and complex history as a small apparel brand adrift on the high seas of global commerce. For four great years we have been making our products with the best people we have ever had the good fortune to work with, and shipping from Hong Kong. About two-thirds of our sales are to people in other places around the world, and it was a good plan to have everything central in a transport hub like HK, but that has become too difficult to manage this year. So we are relocating our warehousing and despatch to Rotorua. It has taken a long time and a...

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Pointless bicycles, and why we ride them

  In case you are feeling less than optimal because of the weather, virus, politicians, current radio, or anything else really, this may help you beat those equinoxial blues. Check out the beautiful, functional, but probably pointless craftsmanship on this bicycle, the closest thing I have seen to a genuine hot rod that isn't a pre-war Ford.  IMAGE NICKED FROM THERADAVIST.COM, A VERY FINE WEBSITE This bike sort of sums up how I feel about bicycles, and a life that revolves around them. I can’t think of a specific outing where the features of this bike would make it the one to choose from a performance standpoint. But still, I can’t stop looking at it. It’s cool, end of story....

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Saving birds and dropping trails

Last week’s highlight was a chance meeting in the woods. I took a visitor for a big lap, showing him a side of the local trails he had not seen previously. One was a dotted line through the primordial jungle that survives on the wilder side of the forest. We heard a kaka on the way up there, and we talked about how various outfits are running trapping programmes in the forest to give the birds a fighting chance. Cats, rats, weasels and possums are just the front runners in a tribe of interlopers who all eat birds, or out compete them for the stuff the birds eat.  At the top of our next climb we met a fellow on...

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