Thursday, 17 November 2011

New Bikes and how cool they are (or not).

Last week I got myself into a bike I said I wouldn't get into. It is an Ibis Mojo HD140.

I was reluctant to get one as they are a lot of money but also, I was hoping to ride a hardtail to keep maintenance costs down. Sadly, the hardtail thing didn't work out for me and my lazy riding style.

It was kind of inevitable, whenever I talk myself out of doing something it ends up actually happening anyway regardless. Sort of a 'matter of time' thing I suppose.

What can I say about it? Well actually I don't want to say much about the bike at all. I will tell you what it has on it though seeing as some like to geek out over that sort of thing,
It is kitted with a Cane Creek Angleset to knock the head angle out 1degree, it has a new fancy golden painted Fox RP23 on the back bouncy bits, 2x10 drivetrain that is a mix of SRAM X7 up front and Shimano XT out the back (it's what I had), a set of Rock Shox Revelation 140mm forks, Joplin, Crank Brothers bars and saddle too and also a nice set of Ibis hubbed wheels using Stan's Flow rims and UST Nobby Nic tyres.

That's that dealt with.

So why did I go for a new bike and this one in particular?
I want to do a broad mix of riding in the future, from your usual Sunday trip to GT along to more out there adventures in the highlands with a large saddle pack and supplies for a weekend.
It is light enough and pedals well enough to make sure I shouldn't have to carry it, and it's beyond capable on the way down the hill afterwards. Solid enough to take a general bit of messing about and careless slinging in the garage, it can handle being bundled into and out of vans and being treated reasonably roughly.

Also, it has the added benefit of looking AMAZING in bright urine coloured yellow after taking a Berocca or similar vitamin tablet.

New bikes are better for inspiration to ride, especially after injury. They kind of prompt you into making some changes about what you want to do in your limited fun time.

This weekend sees the Annual Pilgrimage to Laggan for a Autumn colour ride in the highlands.  Should be a lot of fun and gladly it's not going to be about the bike, it's going to be about going out with friends in the hills and having a good time. The new bike makes this happen but it isn't about the bike. That's quite liberating.  Kind of like a new chapter of breaking away from kit for kits sake and enjoying the new adventures new bikes can allow you to partake in.  Make sense?

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Gloves. The mystical art of....

You will be pleased and no doubt re-assured that as socially amazing as we are and awesomely hunky as we are, we still like to take time to try out things that come in to the store that are new.

I am trying out a new set of gloves we sell as an experiment to see what they are like over the whole season of winter.  Gloves, second to my helmet, are the most important bit of riding kit and i tend not to scrimp on them, my leather Giro gloves are testament to this and the fact they make me look like I just stepped out of Neverland is an extra bonus.

Being a profuse sweater I suffer from very wet hands when riding. I can't tell you how annoying this is. Wet insides to your gloves are so irritating it is unreal. Waterproof gloves seem to exacerbate the issue as they are designed to keep water out but they also have the amazing by product of keeping water (sweat) IN!

So last night I decided to pick the humble sub£40 waterproof glove from PRO and start riding it.

I will use them every day and every weekend that I go riding and might even use them for running when not on the bike and still needing some protection.

Initial impressions:
1. They are not too chunky (ace!)
2. They are warm
3. They are quite movable so I felt all the controls were usable on the bars
4. They are a lot of glove for the money
5. They don't offer a huge amount of hand grip but in reality they actually work well...
6. Sizing is odd. I am a textbook medium and these are an XL that fit me.

Keep checking here for updates - if there is no update, assume all is good in gloveworld.

UPDATE - 17/11/11
Gloves are performing well. Not too sweaty and they are warm.
One small thing I need to fix on the bike though that I have noticed... because the gloves are of a reasonable size it means that when riding with drop levers you may need to keep on top of lever throw if using cantilever brakes.  The habit of tucking fingers behind the brake levers is something  I need to stop!