Sunday, March 25, 2012

First Dirt

First dirt (and beers) at The Overlook
Classic American story: (51 year old) kid gets shiny new bike. Report after first ride: Need to change my riding style.

Turning. The Rig needs to be horsed around some of the turns, the El Mar turns much easier. Horsing it almost sent me into the trees a couple of times. Maybe it's geometry, maybe the maxel, maybe the new Reba fork (stiffer?) but it is definitely more nimble.

Acceleration. OMG yes. While it's not a light frame, the hoops are light and with 26" 1.95 tubes (trick I learned at the shop) so are the tires. So it accelerates quickly. Or maybe it's the new bike buzz I had going, but who cares.

The shifting is fast and precise, both front and back, thanks to the X9 upgrade.

And the unexpected surprise is the brakes. Hydraulics give such a better feel than cable. Maybe the big rotor up front makes a difference. Whatever. I had not anticipated this bonus. Huge.

Only two knocks against it after two rides:

  • Needs chain stay protector. Actually very little chain slap, but with a BRAND NEW shiny frame I want to keep it that way.
  • Front tire feels slightly out of round. Only noticeable on very smooth stretches, but is noticeable. Maybe tire bead needs to be re-seated. That should be fun (see prior post).

Oh and one more great feature. I suspected it ahead of time, but still it may be the best of all. The new bike draws a crowd! It started with fellow riders stopping by the house to "sneak a peek" and it culminated with myself, MikeR, RobI, and Zoey out at The Overlook. Moments later MikeM came screaming in sweaty and out of breath after a dash from the boat launch to meet us  see the bike  drink beer. And MarkS arriving 5 minutes later from the bonus loop with the same agenda.

If the first couple of rides are any indication, many more memories will be made with this bike.


"It won't make you ride better, it will make you ride more, and that will make you ride better."
     - Nippleworks ad (talking about value of a good bike)


  1. Light wheels are major. If you want really light tubes, get the Luna Lites (sp?) from Performance. 26" tubes, uber thin. Problem: flat REALLY easy.

    Re. tires... I noticed your back tire is sorta wiggly as well. Almost like it's not fully bea-seated, but more likely just a wiggly carcass.

    Great bike btw... the rear drops alone are bike porn quality. Love it.


  2. BTW, are you sure it was just a "new bike buzz"???