Thursday, June 30, 2011

Stuff I like...

I have been meaning to do a somewhat random honest list of bike stuff I like independent of sponsorships and obligations.

I like:
  • Technical trails - why I started mountain biking a lot more than road biking
  • Technical races - makes racing way more fun
  • Road biking in Wisconsin - best roads I have ridden, period
  • Road biking for recovery - nothing finer than an easy'ish spin on a nice hot day
  • Really sweet road bikes - My new Madone 6.9 ssl is off the charts awesome.
  • Off road time trials - super painful but just you vs. trail
  • Technical climbs - sometimes I can even forget that I am climbing (like Stairway at Red Wing)
  • Moab, Utah - the town, the people... oh, and the trails.
  • Trying new kinds tires - most important part of a mountain bike and so many great options
  • Bell Helmets - the Volt just fits me... I forget I am wearing it
  • 1 by 10 (or 9) - less is more...simpler is better
  • Reliable hubs - in my experience, DT Swiss are the best out there
  • Stiff and light wheels - Of course right? But at least there are options out there now (see my last post)
  • Dual suspension - why would you want to get kicked around by a hardtail? I stand by the Top Fuel as being the best I have ridden.
  • Disc brakes - have you tried a bike with canti's lately? How did we ever survive on those
  • 6" trail bikes - if you haven't ridden the latest generation of 6" bikes, you are missing out. They pedal well and are a joy to ride. Every brand has one now, but I prefer the Trek Remedy.
  • 24 hour team races - yeah they hurt, but it is fun to experience a team competition with the mountain biking world
  • Tacky trails - not dusty dry, just that perfect tack (some in MN call this wet) that you get about 8 hours after a light rain.
  • Riding with my son - so fun now that he is on 2 wheels. He keeps asking when he gets his first dual suspension...
  • Camping and Riding vacations - I don't fit them in often, but vaca's don't get any better than that
  • Bontrager shoes - For my feet they are the best I have tried.
  • UST Tubeless system - I burped the stans rims, a lot, the UST is just safer and more reliable
  • Sram XX cassette - awesome engineering and craftsmanship
  • XTR brakes (the new ones) - tiny little levers with so much power
  • XTR shifters (all of them) - they are just buttery smooth
  • Aluminum cranksets - Shimano has this down...this is a place on the bike where Al just makes more sense than carbon
  • Carbon frames - this is a place where carbon makes more sense than Al
  • Fat bikes - snow bikes are so fun...I heard Surly is making an even fatter 4.5" tire (vs current 3.8"), WOW!
  • Riser bars - better than a skinny flat bar w/ bar ends for most types of trails and riding
  • Gu and Gu Brew - about the only thing my stomach can take no matter the conditions
  • Tray mount hitch rack - I have a Cycle On Pro and LOVE it.
  • Craftsman C3 Pump - Not intended to be a bike tool but fills tires up fast and reads out to the nearest .1 PSI
  • Egg Beater pedals - been on em for a long time..the lightest and easiest to clip in. The new ones have better shoe lug engagement too.
  • Fox RP23 shock and RLC fork - set it and forget it....none of that lockout stuff
  • Carbon fiber rims - I used to think it was silly until I tried them. They are more durable than Al (downside is that if you do break them, they are more expensive to replace).
  • Gadget free mountain bike handlebars - no computers, just a front brake rear brake, and rear shifter
  • Compact road bars - I am not super flexible so the compact reach makes the drops more comfortable.
  • Trunk and rack for bike commuting - gets everything off my back
  • Commuting on a mtbk - when road construction season hits I am ready, when snow hits I am ready. For the other 3 days of the year, road bikes are better for commuting.
  • Clear or white water bottles in the summer, black ones in teh winter - if you don't know why buy the dummy's guide to basic physics
  • White or mostly white helmets - again, the physics thing
  • Oakley Jaw Bones - Jen hates em, I love em. We have agreed to disagree.
  • Watching downhillers - they have bigger ones that me
  • Watching trials riders - looks like so much fun...I wish I could do that. They too have bigger ones.
  • Bike shops run by people who ride bikes - those that ride and ride hard really know what you need
  • Bike shops with mechanics who mountain bike - mountain bikes need a special kind of love
  • Bontrager Saddles - I switched from Selle after I was encouraged to try them...I won't go back
  • Mt. Borah pro bibs - they make our team gear, but my family members buy their standard bibs too because they are reasonably priced, very comfortable and last a long time
  • MNMBS vibe - good competition, dedicated series officials, tough courses, and just the right level of intensity...everyone is having a good time
  • Weekday races - keeps me fit and makes summer a race and recover (on casual rides) cycle
  • Having a timing chip on the back of the number plate - no ankle bracelet but still automated timing
  • Good quality unbiased comparative bike and component testing - gotta have the Gage R&R, test setup/equipement, and test procedure (including sample size) listed though... I almost never find this stuff.
Hmm... that is all for now. Have a great 4th!

3 comments:

Sauber said...

#1, you need to add 100 mile epic test races to the list... I have a question for you, see http://sauberlarry.blogspot.com/

Sarah said...

Nice list mix of personal and professional passion!

Jack hinkens said...

nice, I like it