Thursday, May 29, 2008


Last weekend..Mohican. This weekend.....Mohican 100.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A Groovy Good Time

My brakes are finally bedded in and are super strong. The first true test for them was last Saturday at the Groovy series race at Vultures Knob, which went like so.

First lap

I had a really bad start because I felt I could push a bigger gear than I normally would and as a result I entered the singletrack around tenth place. I sat in like I always do while squawking at riders in front of me to "hurry up pookie" and to "spank that monkey" and asking "who`s my little blueberry now?". What fun it is. After the first mile the guy in front of me decides to get off and run in front of me and John Tullis because he messed up on a climb. This made Tullis mad
and he almost stalled out which made me do a track stand midway up the climb which John Lorson (on a SS) did not exactly appreciate. I soon passed Tullis and two other Vet open riders who were in front of me and at that point I was probably in 6th place but I felt further back. The next guy I passed Tim Mould who let me by. Such a nice boy. I didn't see another rider until the

Second Lap

I was being harassed by two spectators in the over under area when I saw Tim Carson bombing down the ravine. I upped my pace in a n effort to catch him and while chasing him I was told by a trusted spectator I was in 4th. I eventually caught Tim and sat on his wheel and we chatted it up
until the start of the

Third Lap

I passed him quickly at the very start of the third lap and slowly dropped him and slowly gaining on Brad and Steve, but to be fair, Tim had rode the Mohican State park loop the day prior and was not race ready. I never caught Steve or Brad and finished third, which was good enough for me. John Lorson finished 1st in the Vet open on a SS rigid 29er and Wes Jones finished a strong 4th place. Well done fellas.

Any way the brakes worked awesome. The power was smooth and powerful... very powerful.

The post race events were so, so. Dr.Knob lit his super fuckin huge bonfire and negated all of the benefits of my zero emissions bicycle that I have been riding to work. The awards ceremony was thrilling as always. (if you don`t know what I`m talking about, theres only one way to find out) As the sun set the DJ (yeah, there was a DJ) started some music and the keg was tapped. I left around 11:00pm and there were plenty of people still there.

Friday, May 23, 2008

The One

Yea... the title pretty much says it all. These are by far the most impressive brakes that I have ever used... and they are only half bedded in. The front came in at 361.7g and the rear at 377.7g after all the lines were cut and bolts were removed (3 rotor bolts). Thats 21.1 heavier in the front and than a Juicy Ultimate and 12.2g lighter in the rear. So The Ones come in 8.9g heavier than the Juicy Ultimates for the EXACT same set up..... oh yeah and there a Downhill brake..

I have a race Saturday and I`ll post a piece on the brakes (once fully bedded in) and the race( sponsored by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co). It should be sweet.

Photo Series

As shot from the bar

A little tid bit on that new BB of mine. The Installation went quite roughly, no pun here. I pulled out my old Truvative Giga pipe Sl which was by the book TOASTED. I cleaned the threads off and re-greased them, the new BB went in smoothly but was binding up at one point in its rotation. I suspected that the BB threads were not aligned properly or the shell needed faced, either way I was not about to ride a $180 BB with a tight spot in it in fear of killing the bearings. The next day I made a trip to the shop to chase the threads and face the shell. The problem turned out to be the shell was not faced causing the BB to angle when fully tightened. With the new BB in my derailleur had to be adjusted and chain line checked. As I figured it was 2.5mm narrower, Duuuh it better be. This leaves me with a setup with little chainring and crank arm clearance but a sweet chainline and a Q-Factor (5mm narrower than before) so I guess its worth it.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Yesterday I received my new hand pump and bottom bracket from the boys at Crank Brothers. When looking for a new bottom bracket I was looking for three important things, Light, 108mm spindle length and a good quality bearing that will last more than the normal 5 months.

I found my bottom bracket with Crank Brothers. They make four different models, two "mountain" bottom brackets called the Cobalt that fit a 73 or 68 shell with either a chromo or titanium 113mm spindle and two "road" bottom brackets called Cyan that will also fit a 73 or 68 shell with either a chromo or titanium 108mm spindle. The only difference between the Bottom brackets is a bit of weight, spindle length and the seals the bottom bracket has. All bottom brackets come with a FIVE year warranty. The Ti bottom brackets retail for $180 while the Chromo ones go for $80.

Cyan Ti Bottom bracket

As far as the pump goes I saw a few in action at a race and I really like the design. They offer 4 different pump designs all with a lifetime warranty. I opted for the simplest/strongest design called the Power Pump Ultra or PPU which was a aluminum barrel with out a pressure gauge. It comes in a 175mm length and has a weight of 127.8g, 9.8 grams above the claimed of 118g. They have a switch that allows you to choose to pump for volume or pressure. So when you first stick the new tube in turn the dial to volume to get the east work done fast and when the pumping gets tough turn the dial to pressure for easier pumping. Pretty crafty eh? I let you know how both really work in the real world a few months from now.

Power Pump Ultra Pump

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Mounring Commute

Ohio weather is really pretty lame. Since I got back three weeks ago it has rained almost every day. I have gotten very little riding in other than commuting to work. So here are some more fixed commuting pics.

Nice brakes
Road Kill... I removed seven dead critters from the road on the way to work Saturday. People have no regard for life. I was fortunate enough to see this guy do the panic dance under a Chevy S-10 and get hit by the underside of the truck. The fucker didn't even slow down, people make me sick. He was dead when I got to him and his teeth made this wonderful scraping noise on the chip and seal as I dragged him off the road.
This guy was spraying some kind of weed killer on this to be field and the wind was carrying the poison all the way to the road. What kind of dip shit thinks its ok to spray any chemical on a windy day. I tried to hold my breath for the 200 feet of field that was being sprayed..
Got me a big pick-um-up-truck, it gets 10 miles to the gallon. I love high gas prices.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

New Whip

A week ago I sent in my employee purchase to Trek Bicycles for a new Gary Fisher Paragon. I had been planning to go with a Superfly but since their release somewhere around January they have been on backorder (super popular??) and now they are labeled as sold out until mid August(will probably see another long backorder). So because of the long wait I pulled the trigger on a Paragon which I am very happy with. It was delivered to the shop on Tuesday and was immediately stripped of all its parts and built up with all my parts off my old X-Cal. The frame, fork and headset are essentially the only parts I`m keeping which by the way all came in at their claimed weight leaving me with a bike that is 132 grams more than my old one leaving it at 21.51 lbs...Which I`m ok with at the moment.

My main reason for rushing the buy was the new G2 geometry, which Fisher claims helps the bike steer better while keeping the high speed stability.What is G2 exactly?

Terms and Names:
Offset-(Blue Line) measured form the center of the steerer tube to the center of the drop out.

Head angle- the angle of the head tube in relation to a vertical line.
Trail-(Green Line) the distance defined by the vertical line from axle to ground and the intersection of centerline of the head tube and ground. What they did is increase the fork offset to 51mm from a normal 34mm
and slackened the head tube angle from a normal 71.5 deg to 69.7 deg. When Fisher first made his 29ers he was using a normal head tube angle and a normal offset fork, 26" geometry if you will. When this geometry is paired with a taller wheel the trail increases. A bike with too large of a trail figure will ride nice at high speed but will feel sluggish and unwilling to change direction at slow speeds. The opposite will happen on a bike with no or very little trail, the bike will be very maneuverable at slow speeds and have a potentially very violent speed shimmy at high speeds. So as the industry went along with the whole "29er scene" they all adopted the same 26" geometry. Fisher then developed the G2 geometry which increases offset and reduces trail making the new 29ers have a more 26" feel but still retain the benefits of the 29" wheel. Currently Gary Fisher is the only company using this geometry on their bikes and in my opinion this makes them the best choice when buying a 29er.

On the Bike

I rode her to work the following day. The first thing I noticed was the bottom bracket is way stiffer and the speed shimmy that I did get on my older frame was gone indicating that the top and down tube have stiffened
up. Another noticeable difference was the lower bar height which was 9mm lower than my old set up. This came as a surprise to me as the head tube is 12.5mm taller than the old frame. My only gripe about the on pavement performance was that it is a little harder to steer my wheelies.

I got her on the dirt on Saturday (lots of rain lately) and the bike preformed very well. Corners were noticeably easier to make and the bike responded better to small body inputs. The front end though heavier on paper felt nice and light and very flickable on the dirt. Descending was noticeably more stable and the rear end felt less wishy washy. When climbing in the saddle the bike tracked better and the front end stayed
planted. When climbing out of the saddle the front end felt very weird, almost twitchy, but not bad, just unfamiliar. The trail was pretty slick in spots (Maze Ville) and the bike handled the slippery mud better than the old one. After one lap I made a few more adjustments to the fork and went out for another lap which was slightly faster than the first. Over all I really like the new bike, the G2 geometry surpassed my expectations and I can’t wait to get dialed in on the bike.

Drive train

New Lower Cockpit

Tons of Clearance

The Fox fork is nice but limited in its range of adjustments and it will eventually be swapped out for the new Reba team 29er.

Monday, May 5, 2008

The New Knob

The Knob is most definitely back and better than before. I have ridden and raced on it before and after its revamp and it is longer by a good seven minutes and around 1.3 miles. The new trail has a few new features but most of the trail added is plain and utilizes the lay of the land better.

Sections that have seen change are;

The Rock Tunnel: the exit of the tunnel was moved out of the ravine and on to the old DH trail.

The Shale Pit: The Famous Tunnel and Ramp over the Tunnel are now gone. The trail goes around the tunnel
and connects to The Billy Goat Trail and instead of going down the ramp the trail doubles back along the corn field and dumps you out on Dicks Express Way.

Fern Gully: The trail makes the switch back after OH SH_T and heads straight down to the cradle (no uphill
any more) and offers a line to the north of the cradle that is easier or a line back up to the cradle that is not really that fun....

Friar Brian`s Forrest: Half way through the section the trail heads west and then south eventually linking
up to the Zig Zag trail with is now ridden in reverse. The trail joins back on the original section before the straight away before the Gold Fish Hole.

The Bowl: The section before the bowl has been rerouted and a rock garden has been added. The tra
il then crosses the road and jumps in to the bowl.

Maze Ville: Right after the Vulture Gate Bridge the trail heads north and loops around in some super tricky single track, think lumpy ground, tight corners and lots of rhythm required. The trail is spliced in to the old Maze Ville and joins the old trail right before Candys Ridge.

The Tee Pee: The Tee Pee is still there but the old straight downhill is gone, I hope you like turning.

Everything else after the last "mud hole by the big tree" is different. There is LOTS of new trail that is challenging mixed in with the old trail and would be way to confusing to explain. The trail finishes like it always does.. over Allan Falls, 180 switch back, long straight away, right turn, uphill straight, over the mulch pile and up and over the finishing jump.

Me, My favorite tool and my favorite Flower

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Ohio roads

Damn this week has been hectic. I jumped back into work at the shop on Monday after my rough race on Sunday and the shop is crazy right now. We are backed up with repairs for two weeks and I got a good amount of extra time in. I had Tuesday off, so I got a bit of riding in but with all the crappy weather we have been getting I have only been able to ride to work three days out the the five I worked this week. I usually ride my fixed Schwinn roadie but today I got rained out in the morning so I got a ride to work and rode home on my MTB. I grabbed my camera to take a few pictures of my commuting route.


Sun Light

Straight Road

Nice Shorts

Tomorrow it looks like I am going down to Mohicantucky with the Orrville group to do a lap or two in preperation for the Mohican 100.
Last weekend at the 2nd OMBC race I got my ass handed to me and Dave and Timmy were in Maryland. I was in third after the first lap but fell apart completely after that. My legs just did not want to work. My arms were cramping, legs sore and twinging and my kidneys were sore. The knob layout is not quite broken in yet and was very bumpy. The never ending bumps at the knob and the lack of never ending small bumps in the Durango area beat me to a pulp. I really hope that my legs will quickly adapt to east coast bumpy riding.

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