Little Detour to Ames Iowa

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I made an emergency detour to drive the 300 miles up to Ames Iowa and patch the roof of Michael’s (Fatka) house.   He called and told me that his roof was leaking pretty badly, but now that I’m up here I think he was exaggerating somewhat.  Not really compared to regular people’s roofs, but it is better than what I had expected. It is raining right now and it is hardly dripping.

I haven’t been up to Ames for a while, but can only stay here a few days.  I’m heading back out to California on Sunday again, so need to get back to Kansas by Friday at the latest.  There is a lot of stuff to be done here, so it is going to be sort of a temporary bandage.

It rained all day yesterday, the whole drive, and I got up here in time to spend an hour on the roof cleaning leaves and checking out the problem.  It is bigger than a couple days of work, thus the bandage fix.

Michael is doing pretty good.  He had hip surgery five weeks ago and then had pulmonary embolism a couple weeks after that, so it hasn’t been the easiest month.  He obviously doesn’t have any business climbing ladders and carrying heavy stuff, so won’t be much use, other than entertainment.

I need to come up here more anyway, so I don’t mind just getting it water tight and then come back and do it right later.

I used to spend weeks/months up here when I started racing.  Michael was the team director of the team I rode for from 19 years old to 27.  He ran the Levis/Raleigh team, then we were sponsored later by Isuzu.   I could write weeks of posts on Michael.  Very eclectic guy.  Super interesting.

Michael lives outside of Ames about 8 miles, so hardly gets any TV channels.  But he did get Fox, which is broadcasting the World Series.  Go Royals.

Okay, today should be a long day.  Gonna be cool out and windy, like 40 mph windy.  I don’t plan to be moving big sheets of rubber around, so the wind shouldn’t  be an issue.   Hopefully I’m not opening a can of worms here.

Michael's house from the driveway.

Michael’s house from the driveway.

Pretty eclectic, right?

Pretty eclectic, right?

This is Pete.

This is Pete.

Need any pine tar? I know where you can get some.

Need any pine tar? I know where you can get some.

This is just the tip of the stuff.

This is just the tip of the stuff.

Remember Steve Bauer's Roubaix bike from the 80's.

Remember Steve Bauer’s Roubaix bike from the 80’s.

Michael has a production Bauer frame laying here. He wants to sell it. It's from 1988. NOS.

Michael has a production Bauer frame laying here. He wants to sell it. It’s from 1988. NOS.

The only problem, or maybe not, is that it is a 64-65, depending on how you measure it. If you're interested, email me an offer.

The only problem, or maybe not, is that it is a 64-65, depending on how you measure it. If you’re interested, email me an offer.

The roof was actually in better shape than I had anticipated. The insulation under the rubber is really the issue.

The roof was actually in better shape than I had anticipated. The insulation under the rubber is really the issue.

Michael with his Popeil Pocket Fisherman.

Michael with his Popeil Pocket Fisherman.  Notice the water stain on the celing?





14 thoughts on “Little Detour to Ames Iowa

  1. Jason Anderson

    Those flat roofs can be tricky. Sometimes the actual leak could be on the other end of the roof and the water works its way to the spot it actually leaks through the ceiling. I would clean out and inspect the spouts, edges of the parapits, and along the skylight. I used to live in New Mexico-just moved back to Des Moines a few months ago. Let me know if you need an extra hand.

    1. Tim

      I am over in Marshalltown 30 miles east of you. Agree with Jason on being careful especially with the winter snow and ice coming soon that will sit there. I am a roofer and am available if you run into any jams or issues where you need to bring up big rolls etc.

  2. Jeff Cozad

    Skylights… My wife put it very well when we were dealing with water leaks trough them at our first house, “Why did we buy a house with a big hole in the roof?”

    Tell Micheal “Hi” for me. I still find it amazing that Ames, Iowa was the epicenter of US bicycle race back in the day.

  3. Clifford

    That Bauer is just my size; too bad I’m not really doing enough riding to need another bike at this point.

  4. Bill K

    I remember seeing that crazy bike on TV. Didn’t he need that because he hurt his back, or something? What was it, a 68 degree seat tube angle? I’m surprised that Bauer didn’t keep it for laughs.

  5. 82medici

    Steve, I don’t know you, but from what I have read here, you calling someone else a “very eclectic guy” is truly an amazing statement.

    I would enjoy the chance to meet you sometime when you get back to Louisville. I appreciated your comments on Cherokee Park a few weeks back. I ride there at least a couple of times a week.

  6. Theresa

    I have the matching saddle to this Eddie Bauer bike it is NOS, a striking pink and black. I was going to keep it, but if it adds value to the frame, include it! Michael can give more specific details about the saddle.

  7. TL

    Before you do any work I would get a quote from a roofing company to repair the roof – then call the insurance company and file a claim if it is substantial enough – you doing things backwards. Most insurance companies will not raise your rates for this – my brother is an independent home adjuster.
    I also lost a few shingles from a wind storm and I called my insurance company and they paid for an entire new roof – rates never went up.

  8. Fausto

    This is the kind of post and response that keeps me reading every day for years. No Doping, No Och, no bullshit. Story of one guy helping another guy who was an influence in his life. With that comes people volunteering to help if they can. All linked by the love of a bicycle. Chapeau!

    1. Skippy

      Would 2nd your comment !

      How many people these days would follow Steve’s example ?

      Makes me wish that i was a neighbour and able to jump in and help .

      In Melbourne at present and the past 8 mths Vince of Mt Martha has been looking after the gear i brought to Oz last November . He is also of the ” Jump in and Help ” mentality .

      More of these type of ” Posts ” will ensure the ” trolls ” find other targets to annoy ?

      As regards ” Cycle Safety ” , the Sth Aust. Government started the 1M Safe Pass under 60kph(35Mph9) & 1 1/2M over 60kph on the 25th October !

      Still a few nutters out there trying to donate their cash to tthe State coffers , but there are always a few that are too stupid to understand that Cyclists are FATHERS , Mothers , Family and even Neighbours !

      Time to download the ” Bumper stickers ” off VisionZeroWorldWide ( on Google ) or ADD your version !


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