Tuesday, October 16, 2007

New Shoes

In my crowd, mountain biking is synonymous with autumn and orange leaves...start riding too soon and one is just plain messing with forces beyond one's control -- a couple springs ago a buddy went out to Maah Daah Hey in MAY...the planets haven't aligned correctly since.

So, with the new season arriving it was time for me to

who am I trying to kid?

So, with The Sweetie building up a 1 x 9 Monkey and getting a new 29er within weeks of each other it was time for me to be out in the garage tinkering on mountain bikes. I had actually started pondering new wheels for the Stumpjumper back in August, but seeing two new September arrivals made the push that much more frenetic. I WANT a Monkey. I WANT a 29er!

Except that I already have a mountain bike I love, a great 'cross bike for commuting and a '76 Raleigh still sitting in my basement ready to become my urban breakfast machine, not to mention the rest of the crowd hanging out in the garage. I have no need for another bicycle.

I test rode a few 29ers just to be sure.

Didn't like any of 'em whew!

So, I did nothing for a couple weeks to be sure the feeling had passed, and after a few early fall rides, I remembered what I liked so much about Stella. She fits. She's easy not in that way. I hopped online to see what wheels the MTBR forums were buzzing on. I talked to friends. I went to a nearby LBS, as well as to the LBS. By the time I'd picked a few brains about hubs and weights and spoke-types I knew what I wanted.

But new wheels meant a few more decisions: stay with rim brakes or go disc? if disc, hydraulic or mechanical? tube or tubeless? do it all myself or have the mechanics take care of everything? AND, should I really drop a wad on a three-year-old bicycle?
Everything arrived last Wednesday. I was slated to leave town bright and early Friday for our annual three-day Wisconsin mountain bike trip...the fall vacation. There wasn't time to be changing things out, and besides who wants to mess with good karma two days before a big trip?

I do.

I'll just take these out to the garage and see how things look, I said. When the dust cloud settled, Stella was sporting new 17 degree Salsa handlebars with Cane Creek ergo bar ends, a SRAM 980 and chain, Thomson seatpost, Avid BB7s, a pair of CrossMarks and a set of sweet DT Swiss 1540s.

She rides like a dream!

- OB off in happy land


C. P. said...

Everything old is new again. Enjoy!

Snakebite said...

Sounds like you're having fun - good for you!

the old bag said...

CP -- thanks! What a great way to be excited about riding all over again.

'bite -- it's a great time of year...in between #@$!! papers and classes. Two more months of that.

rigtenzin said...

A three year old bike is new, to me at least.

gwadzilla said...

the 29er is a different feel

when I first got on my Karate Monkey rigid single speed I felt like I was up in the clouds getting ready to go over the falls

29 inch wheels
22 inch frame
extended seat post

me being 6'4" tall

that puts my head pretty far away from the ground when I am riding

took some adjusting