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Smevan mikelevy's article
Feb 15, 2018 at 14:04
Feb 15, 2018
Good Ideas Executed Poorly - Opinion
The key to smooth-running pedals is to use journal bearings - as long as you keep them full of grease, journal bearings have no metal-on-metal contact and there aren't any moving parts, so there genuinely is no wear; literally none at all. I'm a big guy, ride my bike without much finesse and don't service my pedals more than once a year, but have had 10 year's life out of a set of pedal built like this, which only gave up once the rubber seals perished. The two sets of Specialized Bennies I have at the moment are both going strong after 2 years, with one grease replacement. The only trade-off is that journal bearings like this usually have a hair's width of vertical play in them all the time, but when you're standing on them, rather than wiggling them in your hands, your weight is obviously only ever pressing down, so you can't feel it.
Smevan mikekazimer's article
Jan 13, 2018 at 4:01
Jan 13, 2018
The Eyecatchers: 7 Intriguing New Bikes - Opinion
Tantrum definitely have one of the coolest suspension designs out there. PinkBike gave it a pretty great first ride review a while ago, but they probably deserve more attention than they're getting atm. https://www.pinkbike.com/news/first-ride-tantrum-missing-link.html
Smevan mozz's article
Dec 29, 2017 at 14:26
Dec 29, 2017
What is the Forum's Sexiest AM/FR/Enduro Hardtail of 2017? - Pinkbike Poll
Surprised to see BTR were missing; thought the new Cotic BFe might have made an appearance too.
Smevan RichardCunningham's article
Nov 24, 2017 at 6:51
Nov 24, 2017
Eminent Cycles Launches the Haste - First Look
@pinhead907: You're right, I'm around 6'2", so I'm largely talking about L/XL frame sizes, rather than trying to forcibly fit mile-long chainstays on everyone's bikes ;) Then again, most bikes have 435, rather than 425mm CS now and the world didn't end, so slightly longer CS probably wouldn't hurt anybody. Short rears are a genuine problem on larger frames, though. My point about Santa Cruz wasn't that they aren't a valid comparison (they're probably quite a good one), but they've spec'd some pretty nonsense CS lengths on bikes like the Chameleon, so comparing another bike to a Santa Cruz doesn't guarantee that its CS lengths aren't nonsense too. They seem to still be in the rut of spec'ing short CS across all their bikes, without thinking whether that's actually the best way to do things. A lot brands only make one-size rear triangles because it save a load of cost on carbon mould tooling, but it's a silly way to design frames.
Nov 20, 2017 at 19:36
Nov 20, 2017
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Nov 20, 2017 at 19:24
Nov 20, 2017
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Smevan RichardCunningham's article
Nov 20, 2017 at 19:18
Nov 20, 2017
Eminent Cycles Launches the Haste - First Look
@pinhead907: Santa Cruz are not a good guide for chainstays though - the new Chameleon hardtail has 415mm 'stays (adjustable up to 430mm) and a 73 deg seat angle on every size, S through to XL. I'm 6'2", on a hardtail with 425mm 'stays and a 72 deg SA; you basically have to kiss the stem to keep the front down on middlingly steep climbs, so a shorter rear, even with the steeper SA, is not a good idea. If you think about the frame as a lever, pivoting about the rear axle, with your weight through the BB, the shorter the CS, the less leverage your weight is exerting on the front wheel, so short rears actually shift grip away from the front, at which point all you can do to restore it is lean forwards, putting more weight through your arms, which will make arm pump worse and have you OTB much more easily. Besides, every brand scales their front triangles across the sizes, but only some (Giant, Norco, etc) bother to scale the rear to match, so handling isn't consistent across most brands' ranges and tall guys end up with bikes which climb horribly.
Smevan RichardCunningham's article
Oct 20, 2017 at 13:14
Oct 20, 2017
Pinkbike Poll: What If....?
- Press-fit creaking isn't the only annoying thing about them: you need more complex tooling/methods to actually get the BB in and out - I would be tempted by a light gearbox, but if that's at the expense of durability, there'd be no point. I'd want to try one out too , bearing in mind a lot of people reckon gearboxes and hub gears can feel "draggy" - The pedals thing will probably always be personal preference. I like flats and my iffy knee probably does too - What does automatic shifting actually bring, in terms of benefits, for 90% of riders. Niche applications, but I can't understand why anyone would ever expect it to be mainstream - Carbon still has the problem that you can't verify its integrity (voids, delamination, dry fibres, etc) without ultrasound scanning your bike after every crash, knock, etc so it's just not a very end-user-friendly material. Getting one season out a £3,000 wheelset still doesn't sound too good, either - I'm 6'2" and have size 13 feet, so the idea of anything being designed to fit me "just right", out of the box, is an entirely foreign concept. Knob-twiddling isn't the most fun thing to do on a bike, though, so I'd take the 95% - This is a silly idea; anything that limits a rider's options is a step back, isn't it? Knacker a fork, or wear something out, then have to send the entire bike off, or buy a new one? Not for me, thanks
Smevan vernonfelton's article
Oct 19, 2017 at 14:29
Oct 19, 2017
Riding Rigid is Ridiculous - Opinion
It's horses for courses, basically, isn't it? I could replace my 140mm hardtail with an EWS-capable bike and all I'd actually end up doing is steamrolling all my local trails, to the point where any tech-y and fun stuff breezes under my wheels without a squeak and I get home 30 mins earlier, having had less fun. You probably can't expect to take a rigid bike to your local enduro and still enjoy it, but even tame trails can become a lot more exciting, when you don't have that suspension safety net. I've done a lot of what is essentially CX riding recently and it's amazing what the combo of speed, a high saddle and hard-to-reach brakes does for injecting some exhilaration into the bike tracks
Smevan mikelevy's article
Sep 21, 2017 at 7:32
Sep 21, 2017
Carbon Fiber Valve Stems, An Improved Dropper, and 6D's Updated Helmets - Interbike 2017
@chasejj: I understand the concept of wheel balancing ;) My point is that riders mess about with tyres, tubes, rim tape, sealant, valves, foam inserts, procore, the occasional tyre plugs/boot, out-of-true wheel, etc which is all guaranteed to affect wheel balance and yet it's not even close to common practice to balance bike wheels. That's not surprising though, because it doesn't matter - ride down anything rougher than a tarmac road and the feedback from the trail will completely drown out any feel of a several-gramme wheel imbalance. I reckon I might be able to tell on my road bike, but even then, old/cheap bike computers with wheel magnets make no noticeable impact on wheel balance, so why would you expect to notice shaving 3 gramme off your valve stem? I'd be willing to bet most professional teams don't bother either, considering they're usually preparing 6 wheels per rider, per race run, before you even consider practice and quali runs.
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