The Pinkbike Podcast: Episode 83 - Does Carbon Fiber Belong On Your Mountain Bike?

Sep 29, 2021 at 14:32
by Mike Levy  
Pinkbike Podcast
Art by Taj Mihelich


Depending on who you ask and where you're putting it, carbon fiber can be either a must-have or a surely-never kinda thing. That's understandable given that our needs vary from having to survive being tossed aside mid-air at the dirt jumps all day, meeting some cross-country racer's fetish for being the lightest such and such on the market, having to withstand a season of downhill racing at Bootleg Canyon, or hopefully just survive a couple years of abuse on your over-taxed trail bike. And when a carbon fiber component (or frame) does fail, especially in a calamitous way as it often does when it gives up, you'll be able to find countless other riders with similar stories.

Maybe there are places on your bike where carbon fiber doesn't belong? That's probably true for many riders, and it's what Mike Kazimer, Henry Quinney, Brian Park and myself chat about in today's podcast.

Where on your bike do you have no problem running carbon, and where would you never dream of using it?





THE PINKBIKE PODCAST // EPISODE 83 - DOES CARBON FIBER BELONG ON MOUNTAIN BIKES?
Sep 30th, 2021

"Guys, my steel single-speed hardtail weighs 39lb and I still have fun!"


Featuring a rotating cast of the editorial team and other guests, the Pinkbike podcast is a weekly update on all the latest stories from around the world of mountain biking, as well as some frank discussion about tech, racing, and everything in between.




Previous Pinkbike Podcasts
Episode 1 - Why Are Bikes So Expensive?
Episode 2 - Where the Hell is the Grim Donut?
Episode 3 - Pond Beaver Tech
Episode 4 - Why is Every Bike a Trail Bike?
Episode 5 - Can You Trust Bike Reviews?
Episode 6 - Over Biked Or Under Biked?
Episode 7 - Wild Project Bikes
Episode 8 - Do We Need an Even Larger Wheel Size?
Episode 9 - Why Are We Doing a Cross-Country Field Test?
Episode 10 - Getting Nerdy About Bike Setup
Episode 11 - Are We Going Racing This Year?
Episode 12 - What's the Future of Bike Shops?
Episode 13 - Are Bikes Too Regular Now?
Episode 14 - What Bikes Would Pinkbike Editors Buy?
Episode 15 - What's Holding Mountain Biking Back?
Episode 16 - Who's Your Mountain Biking Hero?
Episode 17 - XC Field Test Insider
Episode 18 - Electronics on your Mountain Bike: Good or Bad?
Episode 19 - The Hardtail Episode
Episode 20 - MTB Conspiracy Theories
Episode 21 - Stuff We Were Wrong About
Episode 22 - Does Your Riding Style Match Your Personality?
Episode 23 - Grim Donut 2 is Live!
Episode 24 - Why Even Buy a DH Bike?
Episode 25 - Fall Field Test Preview
Episode 26 - The Three Most Important Mountain Bikes
Episode 27 - The World Champs Special
Episode 28 - All About Women's Bikes
Episode 29 - Freeride or Die
Episode 30 - Would You Rather?
Episode 31 - Wet Weather Riding Tips & Tricks
Episode 32 - What Needs to Change in the Bike Industry?
Episode 33 - Behind the Scenes at Pinkbike Academy
Episode 34 - Grilling Levy About Field Test Trail Bikes (and His Bonspiel)
Episode 35 - Story Time - Stranger Than Fiction
Episode 36 - Grilling Kazimer about Field Test Enduro Bikes
Episode 37 - The 2020 Privateer Season with Ben Cathro
Episode 38 - Editors Defend Their 2020 Best-Of Picks
Episode 39 - Predicting the Future of Mountain Biking
Episode 40 - The Pinkbike Awards!
Episode 41 - Racing Rumours and Team Changes
Episode 42 - Mountain Biking's Guilty Pleasures
Episode 43 - Dangerholm's Wildest Custom Mountain Bikes
Episode 44 - Mountain Bike Suspension Decoded
Episode 45 - What Makes a Good Riding Buddy
Episode 46 - The RockShox Zeb vs Fox 38 Deep Dive
Episode 47 - High Pivot Bikes: The Good, The Bad, and The Why?
Episode 48 - Rides That Went Horribly Wrong... & Why That Made Them So Good
Episode 49 - What's the Best DH Bike?
Episode 50 - Are Bikes Actually Getting Less Expensive? (Value Bike Field Test Preview)
Episode 51 - Should MTB Media Post Spy Shots?
Episode 52 - Our Most Embarrassing MTB Moments
Episode 53 - Should Climbers Still Have the Right of Way?
Episode 54 - Best and Worst MTB Product Marketing
Episode 55 - Big Dumb Rides & Staying Motivated
Episode 56 - What Were the Most Important Inventions in Mountain Biking?
Episode 57 - What Were the Best (and Worst) Trends in Mountain Biking?
Episode 58 - Debunking Mountain Biking's Biggest Myths
Episode 59 - Value Bike Field Trip Surprises & Spoilers
Episode 60 - What Kind of Mountain Biker Do You Want to Be?
Episode 61 - Athlete Pay, Lycra, Equality and More from the State of the Sport Survey
Episode 62 - Editor Preferences and Why They Matter
Episode 63 - Our Best (And Worst) Bike Buying Advice
Episode 64 - Who's On Your MTB Mount Rushmore?
Episode 65 - The Hardtail Episode
Episode 66 - The Best and Worst of Repairing Bikes
Episode 67 - The Story of Mountain Biking's Most Interesting Man: Richard Cunningham
Episode 68 - Who Are Mountain Biking's Unsung Heroes?
Episode 69 - The Good, Bad, and Strange Bikes We've Owned - Part 1
Episode 70 - The Good, Bad, and Strange Bikes We've Owned - Part 2
Episode 71 - The Story of Mountain Biking's Most Interesting Man: Richard Cunningham - A Pinkbike Podcast Special, Part 2
Episode 72 - Hey Outers!
Episode 73 - The Details That Matter... and Some That Shouldn't
Episode 74 - The Best Trails We've Ridden and What Makes Them So Special
Episode 75 - Things MTB Brands Waste Money On
Episode 76 - MTB Originals and Copycats
Episode 77 - Interview with Outside CEO, Robin Thurston
Episode 78 - Modern Geometry Explained
Episode 79 - What's the Future of eMTBs?
Episode 80 - The Best Vehicles for Mountain Bikers
Episode 81 - You've Got Questions, We've (Maybe) Got Answers
Episode 82 - Behind the Scenes at Field Test


202 Comments

  • 159 17
 You know what doesn't belong on your mountain bike? A motor.
  • 6 6
 PREACH!!!
  • 3 0
 How can you not be enticed by a dude that looks like he is levitating into a space ship with the phrase. More power. That's the true spirit of mountain biking. Why we all took up the sport.
  • 19 17
 I have a new rule about Pinkbike podcasts: As soon as the E -word gets brought up, turn it off.
  • 31 10
 @Saidrick, that's a weird rule. You know you can fast forward, right?
  • 2 0
 @mikekazimer: question for the podcast I'm a avid listener but Why do we use preset? I can understand for thin rims but for endure bikes sradar is better. There harder to screw up. And any gas station has an air compressor for the valves? Would love an answer.
  • 2 0
 @suz18: in the states we have presta and schrader, but the internet tells me of Dunlop valves across the pond. @henryquinney would a new valve standard be the final straw for riders and PB commenters?
  • 8 2
 @mikekazimer: Fast forward like climbing an Ebike?
  • 10 21
flag njcbps (Sep 30, 2021 at 13:48) (Below Threshold)
 This reminds me of the self-righteous stance skiers took when snowboards started to show up.

E-bikes have a legitimate place in the biking sphere. The tech allows more folks to enjoy the sport–which is what we want. We're not looking to make an exclusive club.
  • 20 2
 @njcbps: Only, snowboards don't have motors.
  • 5 18
flag njcbps (Sep 30, 2021 at 13:54) (Below Threshold)
 @chriskneeland: The point of that comparison is the phrase "self righteous." Skiers thought this new tech would sully their pure sport, just the same as those harping on E bikes. To wit, this is 1985:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPZDEWBzneY

And much the same as snowboarders are a regular part of the mountain now, so will E MTB's be in 35yrs
  • 8 0
 @njcbps: I’ve see very few people who have taken up mtb because of ebikes. Most are already mtb riders who buy an ebike.
  • 1 0
 @cypher74: we have way too much beginners with rental e-mtb's. I know renting the damn things is a livelyhood for some and I really dont give a fiddle what other people ride. But when they scare the shit out of other trail users im starting to have an issue. The trails in state parks have only been legal for few years after 15 years of fighting for it. Now in just a couple of years (mostly) rental riders and increasing hikers(thanks covid) are starting to clash.
  • 23 4
 So in spirit of the recent Enduro Bike Field Test, I am becoming frustrated at how you guys describe how bikes climb. these days, every bike is going to climb "good," and maybe a little better or a little worse than other bikes in their category. I've heard "this bike climbs well" in every field test video. A request of mine, would be to choose one brand, and do a longer, more realistic efficiency test on every bike in their line-up. I'd love to see Levy and Henry each choose one brand's hardtail, their 29r XC bike, the 27.5 trail bike, the mullet enduro bike, etc, etc up a longer single track trail, trying to keep wattage controlled (obviously this may not be feasible on a real, and longer trail compared to the gravel road churn), and lets truly see how these "good climbing enduro bikes" compare to the rest of the line-up. But for the love of MTB, no e-bikes please.
  • 12 0
 I'm with you - climbing is an important factor to me. Although I'm not into doing more or longer Efficiency Tests haha
  • 1 0
 I like your thought process here, I too would like to see more measurement of climbing efficiency.

however more than anything I'm concerned with technical climbing, I would like the reviewers to kind of separate these two things. I don't care all that much about how efficient a bike is sitting down steady pedalling anything modern is adequate and tires and weight are more important than design. But once you start trying to make it up muddy root clusters and super steeps, then design and tuning matter a whole bunch (although still less than skill !)
  • 1 0
 @mikelevy: Yeah, a bit of a brutal ask I must admit, but I think seeing every bike compared (within the same brand to keep suspension design controlled) would make for really interesting 1-3 videos. I'd volunteer my own legs for this if I could!
  • 1 0
 I sense that most of us aren’t racing, so to me climbing efficiency isn’t much of a selling point. Almost nothing climbs poorly these days. Count me out for watching or reading about a wattage test.
  • 1 0
 @mikelevy: question to ebikes even need drivetrain why not single speed
aluminum frame value version
  • 1 0
 *do
Also would a high pivot design allow for a full suspension single speed setup?
By the way carbon cranks are stiffer
  • 1 0
 @wheelsmith: the motors can only provide so much power and you would struggle to assist them at low speed/steep pitches.
Regarding high pivot with an idler I suppose, you'd still need something to compansate for chain growth, as the idler only affects the top of the chain, not the bottom.
  • 1 0
 @Tristanssid: I'm single speed primarily so you know I'm not a fan of the motors. I thought it would be a more efficient and cheaper system which would certainly work on a hardtail. If the motor is tuned differently the power could be delivered in theory. I've often thought about a single speed full suspension setup without a mech. I was thinking the high pivot may work but I have little knowledge with idlers. I came up with this notion riding my single speed up steeps.
  • 17 0
 F1/Aerospace/Food Grade all basically buzz words for marketing, but does this mean anything to the average consumer? Anyways... our rotors are made from 420 high carbon virgin stainless steel, which is a surgical grade stainless.
  • 4 0
 So I can do trailside surgery with a Galfer rotor? That's really good to know! My friends won't let me do surgery with non-virgin food grade stainless rotors.
  • 4 0
 @Marquis: Your friends are smart. We wouldn't recommend attempting surgery with other rotors (or ours for the record, or without surgical training)
  • 1 0
 "Food grade" is very specifically about what's safe for use in, on, or while manufacturing food. Weird for that to be misused in marketing material.
  • 1 0
 @boozed: just was about to write: at least food grade the consumer will realize once it's not used anymore but e.g. some old rusty fencing steel instead and maybe some lead somewhere... Maybe even add it to the salt or something...
  • 16 1
 I’m wondering if outside has bitten off more than that can chew and underestimated the sheer stubbornness and strong will of the average pb commenter...
  • 4 0
 In order to stubbornly comment you have to visit these pages and have something to complain about, and if you're visiting these pages I'm guessing Outside will be happy!
  • 5 0
 Ha! Yeah the hard downvoting of any commenter with an Outside+ badge being the ‘canary in the coal mine’ that caught my attention… it will be interesting to see if those badges stick around more than a few weeks.
  • 12 0
 I don't know the exact point in the podcast when it was mentioned, but there was talk about proportion of carbon cranks that fail and it was used to describe "probability." what was actually being described was incidence and prevalence. Incidence is the number of events/states/conditions in a given time (eg. number of broken crank arms this year), whereas prevalence is the total number of events to date. The incidence rate would be close to what is described as the "probability" of carbon cranks breaking, but I have no idea what the number is. I just wanted to share some science language.
  • 12 0
 One point I would like to make about carbon bike parts and the marketing behind them.

The general public should understand that when bicycle & carbon component manufacturers talk about how STRONG their carbon components are typically they're talking about strength using the engineering definition of that term. In my opinion this is a little bit deceptive because, in general, most consumers associate marketing claims such as "22% stronger than aluminum!!1!!!!" with assumptions of durability and ability to withstand impacts.
The assumption of impact strength and specifically point loading, which is what can happen when your bike goes tumbling down a rock garden or hill in a crash, is where carbon is far more vulnerable to catastrophic damage than a metal frameset.
  • 14 0
 Henry has some fine rants. He needs to be a regular on this. I never thought I'd see Levy take the calm dad role in one of these things.
  • 15 1
 I think we should be aiming at the most recyclable or most upcycled parts at this point in the evolutionary games
  • 11 0
 And yet the bike industry is going less green with the introduction of batteries and motors to the gene pool
  • 1 0
 Similarly, when to pay extra for the component is such that it’s the last one you’ll likely buy, like the oft-cited King headset, which minimizes your environmental footprint. This is my view of the 1Up bike rack - it’s US made etc etc and likely the last you’ll ever need. When the time comes for a new seat post, I’m going BikeYoke for the reliability and user-serviceability. See also We Are One’s pledge to build a bike with components and materials (mostly) sourced within 500 miles. That’s fantastic.
  • 1 0
 The industry is about making money, not looking after the planet. Sorry! Business and saving the planet don't mesh.
  • 1 0
 @littleskull99: I mean, they can do better. Maybe shops can have an aluminum buy back program (clapped out frame that is nothing more than a risk, sub scrap price but with convenience of dropping it off there).

just because profit is the bottom line doesn't mean that profit and not f*cking it up for my kid aren't in alignment. 'Cause he's got the addiction for n+1 as well
  • 12 1
 It’s difficult to have a conversation about the present without talking about the past.

More RC please.
  • 6 0
 we always need more rc
  • 14 7
 Couldn't get a much more 'click bait' article than this one Outside/Pinkbike (yes I took the bait). Carbon done correct is fine. It's on everything from Space craft, aircraft (both military & civilian), race cars critical structural components, etc.
  • 6 5
 The carbon fibre they put in bikes is not comparable to the carbon fibre they put in planes. I also dont see how it's a clickbait title. It's a pretty accurate summation of the conversation that they had.
  • 3 1
 @Bobadeebob: it's not comparable because it's not the same usage. The point is there's such a polarizing effect with carbon right now and the bike industry in particular. Folks either think it's the best thing since sliced bread or they think anything with it's going to somehow explode in your hands if you look at it wrong.
  • 1 1
 @Bobadeebob: surprisingly some companies are using scrap carbon from the aerospace industry. You're not usually seeing that on frames, and it's far from the norm, but pretty cool that some accessories and components are using carbon that could have been in a 757 wing spar.
  • 9 2
 Im a huge fan of carbon fiber. The most important carbon fiber parts for me are the frame and the wheels. I like the stiffness of the carbon frame and the feel more than I do aluminum. As far as the wheels, even carbon wheels that weigh the same as aluminum carry speed speed better and are super reliable. I’m running we r one union wheels and have hit some square edge super hard and the wheels didn’t blink. When you factor in the lifetime warranty and spokes never coming loose, it’s a win win for me. Is it needed? Nope. I can have just as much fun on any other material. But I prefer carbon
  • 4 0
 I’ve been riding 20ish years and I rarely went a full season on the same alloy rims, seems I was always getting dents, flat spots, and having to true them. Switched to wr1 strife last spring and I’m nearly lost for words. Almost 2 full seasons now and they haven’t gone out of true or needed a spoke re-tension, and I’ve smashed them, good god have I smashed them. I even did a full lap of kicking horse with no rear tire. They remain perfect except for scratches in the finish. Not to mention the ride quality surpasses any alloy rim I’ve owned.
  • 8 1
 QUESTION why do we use presta valves? ok if its and xc race bike I can understand but for enduro bikes srader vaulves are harder to screw up you can air up your tires at basically every gas station and there not much heaver. would like a GOOD answer. until then i will be drilling holes in my wheel to and cutting out car tubes.
  • 2 0
 Because Presta is the one tube manufacturers seem to have settled on for the majority of tubes. The valve stem is 2mm narrower which was relevant for rim strength back in the day, not really now and it’s less complex to produce which probably,eats it’s cheaper.

It’s likely as simple as they’re cheaper.
  • 1 0
 you can get tubeless Schrader valves. even Stan's makes them. i'm using some amazon specials. and you aren't wrong. top 5 modifications i've ever made to a bike.
  • 1 0
 Crap answer from the panel - I'm guessing they1 haven't tried schrader.
  • 6 1
 F1 is not all like Mountain biking because the R&D costs of a single team in F1 likely eclipse the entire Mountain bike industry. I would say folks that design suspension or carbon components for F1 know a thing or two that might be useful to the biking industry.
  • 2 0
 Ditto the food-grade stainless steel industry!
  • 2 0
 Agreed. A design engineer who has put in time in F1 or aerospace will almost certainly have developed knowledge of processes like risk management and design development. The problem I see is when the term aerospace is bounced around for something relatively simple like an aluminum alloy.
  • 9 0
 Wheels for sure need to be carbon for me. Such reliability
  • 3 0
 Agreed. I used to trash at least one alloy hoop per year without fail, and they’d always be needing trued. Now my wheels are always true, and I’ve only broken one carbon rim in the past five years, which was the result of an impact that would have broken any rim.

Plus, any carbon rim worth buying comes with a lifetime warranty these days.
  • 4 0
 I think no but I do love my renthal carbon bars - they have eliminated by wrist pain completely. Every person I recommend them to who has wrist pain has it eliminated by these bars. I hope to God they never break because I can't ride without them.
  • 1 0
 I have wrist pain. Do you think it is the construction or shape of the bar?
  • 1 0
 @lefthandohvhater: good question not sure I think both
  • 1 0
 Interesting- I went from carbon renthals to a titanium bar because I kept getting hand numbness. Ti is a big improvement, albeit with a 150g weight penalty. I still get hand numbness, but nothing like as often
  • 4 0
 @short-but-sweet: try nerve glide exercises - had a similar issue and after a few months I am mostly numb free
  • 2 0
 @mtnsnap: thank you. I just looked it up, I’m onto it
  • 1 0
 second this - the only carbon component I had on my bikes for years was a carbon bar - it kept my wrist tendons from getting inflamed too much, which was constantly happening with alloy bars (I have De Quervain syndrome so eventually I'll have to have surgery anyways, but those bars really allowed me to ride everyday for 2 years with almost no wrist issues)
  • 1 0
 @lefthandohvhater: Between aluminum and carbon I notice less vibration felt in the hands. The shape can be a factor, but for me personally it's more the vibration transmitted.
  • 8 0
 Just give me titanium everything... starting with my knees please.
  • 1 0
 Titanium bicycle frames (and parts) aren't immune to breakage. Just say'n.
  • 4 0
 Props to Pinkbike for throwing out the "don't go outside, you might get hit by a bus" version of an environmental stance. One is discernably better and it is on us as consumers, editors, and employees of the industry to seek out the people who are willing to put the time in to do the research. I don't honestly know what the answer to the "which is better" question but I make choices based on research that is verifiable and most importantly has been performed.

The blanket statement of "nothing you buy is good the environment is just understating the issue and not giving one of the largest global issues its due.
  • 4 0
 I love the podcast… but it sometimes makes me realize that tech editors don’t have to buy their own gear… Example: Sure you can spend $3k on carbon wheels, but its far from the norm and most consumers aren’t spending near that much.

DT Swiss EX 1700 wheels are around $900 for a set. WAO Union Wheels with i9 1/1 Hubs are $1,400 and come with a lifetime warranty.

It’s not $1000 vs $3,000… there’s only a $500 difference between ‘benchmark’ alloy wheels and really good carbon wheels with nice hubs.

After years of denting alloy rims and truing my wheels monthly (and rebuilding my rear wheels with new rims every year or so) I took the plunge and built myself a set of WAO rims with Chris King Hubs. I’ve been on them for over 3 years with near zero maintenance. So… in the long run they’ve been cheaper AND more reliable AND the bike feels better on the trail.

When I look at return on investment for paying the ‘carbon tax’… rims, frame, and bars have all been totally worth it.
  • 3 0
 @mikekazimer - sometime last year, you had mentioned you were testing a tire that was your new favorite. When the Vittoria Mazza review went up, someone asked if those were it, but you had said no and that they were still under embargo. Have these tires been released yet and if so what were they?
  • 4 0
 I was talking about the new Maxxis Shorty (www.pinkbike.com/news/review-maxxis-shorty-gen-2-tire-the-sequels-better-than-the-original.html). It's my favorite fall / winter tire here in the PNW.
  • 1 0
 @mikekazimer: Gotcha. Thanks!
  • 1 0
 @mikekazimer @mikelevy
This was an older podcast you said that you like Vittoria. What front and rear tires do like? I run Minion and aggressor. Both just EXO+ casings. I live in Kansas so I don’t need DD casings. I would like to know what you think I should try on a set up.
Thanks
  • 1 0
 @jalopyj: I've been wondering what tire it was as well. Mystery solved.
  • 3 0
 The Santa Cruz Nomad carbon video convinced me to give it a try in a frame. I’ve had several carbon frames, some that have had damage before I’ve even owned them and had no problems. Carbon bars, all in. Tried carbon wheels because I was able to get a deal on a set with nice hubs. Broke 2 carbon rims, both name brand. I’ve never had alloy rim issues, just usual maintenance. Aluminum rims, cranks, stem, but ok with carbon elsewhere.
  • 3 0
 F1, Aerospace, aluminum (pronounced the American way without the extra vowel). These are the PB trigger words. I love the addition of Henry who seems particular and has opinions he'll defend.

I got a bit triggered when you guys took a dump on CF cranks then compared the weight of XX1 CF cranks to XTR AL cranks. XX1 with a ring is 425 grams according to gram scale photos on the internet of things, and XTR 9100's are 570 grams. The XTR's even cost more and have you ever seen MSRP on their 12x chainring? $139. Now you've seen it and you can't unsee it.

Polling nerd comment. Agree that there are more AL cranksets out on the market, but it might be worth adding a poll about what kind of cranks the PB community owns. Guessing there are a much higher percentage of CF crank owners on PB compared to MTB community at large, which could change some of your stats

Ok, back to work and let someone else lead the CF crank crusade. Keep up the great podcast. And Levy, never change.
  • 2 0
 I dont have any carbon on my bike at the moment. not for any particular reason. but i did buy an alluminum bike mostly on purpose (it was in stock) and im keeping it for a long time on purpose. even with access to bike shop discounts. i dont outwardly not like carbon and i dont not trust it i just dont have it.
  • 3 1
 @henryquinney I love you all! If it makes you feel better I dropped out of high school at 16 because school is often terrible and I hated it (though I did end up getting a PhD in Robotics). Anyhow, if you wanted to compare significance (if it really matters) between percentages you can use this calculator: www.evanmiller.org/ab-testing/chi-squared.html

You can also use the Bootstrap with the Permutation Test. Makes good afternoon reading Smile en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Resampling_

You seem like a really smart guy. Degrees are often not indicators of intelligence Smile
  • 2 0
 A freind of mine broke his XX1 carbon crank in bikepark at Sölden, Austria and the rider behind got it on GoPro. He didnt touch any rock, it just broke in the middle of the chainring-side.
Did i mentioned he weights 120kg ready to ride? He isnt fat, he is 1,92m tall and a mountain of a guy. A great biker who rides the shit out of his Firebird.
Carbon cranks are cool, but rider weight is the most limiting factor aside what you a ride your bike on.
  • 5 0
 Thanks for the gaslighting about the Outside banner and Outside + cross-branding on PB.
  • 3 0
 Gaslighting and gatekeeping
  • 4 0
 @mikelevy:

Pinkbike
Gatekeeping Since 1998

(t-shirt merch suggestion)
  • 2 0
 While trying not piss anyone off i‘m trying to find the english words to say how this very good podcast got better joined by Henry.. So, i like you all girls and boys and you do a great job. Perhaps its this european twist Henry brings along although he isnt european any more since Brexit.
Cheers from germany and ride on.
P.S.: since no one wants to talk about ebikes, how long do we have to wait until my electronic suspension locks out because i‘m shifting gears up with my AXS. Or opens up while i‘m lowerkmg my AXS Reverb. Is more or less then 3 years?
  • 2 0
 I would be interested in a podcast or article about which companies produce for which brand. For example Giant and Merida make frames for quite few other big brands, KMC makes chains for other chain brands etc. It is a side of the mountainbike industry that is out of public view and some of these companies try to keep it that way.
  • 2 0
 I’d be interested in that too but I strongly suspect The Industry doesn’t want us to know that info. And now with new ownership, I can all but guarantee this is not the website that’s gonna blow any whistles. Leave that for the Ridemonkey forums.
  • 2 1
 Never owned carbon cranks and never ever have I broken any crank arms whether aluminum or carbon.

As for carbon parts I run full Shimano XTR which has carbon parts, Carbon bar/stem, carbon frame, carbon wheels, carbon seat rails. Still going strong.
  • 1 0
 I have a set of Zipp 3zeromotos on my Ripmo and I ride that bike in the rocky Canadian jank (East Coast) almost exclusively and they are still perfection. No worries at all. True as day one. I also don’t run any inserts with these either. They compliance is amazing too. Though these are not the lightest, I still love them.
  • 2 0
 Zipp is the only carbon rim that makes sense to me. I probably won't buy them (they don't currently produce a 26" version) but I definitely would get a thin walled carbon rim with a hollow cross section as if it were extruded aluminium. Different material, different design. Only Zipp currently seems to get that.
  • 1 0
 @vinay: www.bouwmeester.com.au

Bouwmeester hoops came before the Zipp hoops. Mello Bouwmeester was one of the brains behind Crank Bros Synthesis which are along the same design vein. So I wouldn't say ONLY Zipp gets it. If you like the Zipps, the Crank Bro's hoops are also worth a look; they are very good (but also don't come in 26"). Reports on WeAreOne's 26" hoops are very good, in spite of being a fairly standard double wall rim profile. It's worth noting that while most carbon rims share that profile, and they also commonly have features like thick hookless bead walls that you don't see/won't see commonly in double wall alloy rims. That double wall also makes sure you are not putting tape right over the nipples, mind you, Mello seems to have designed his namesake singlewall hoops in such away that this was not an issue, unlike the Zipps. That is a relatively minor issue through, and the Zipps still look pretty neat to me as well.

Mello left Crank Bro's a short while ago, I believe to move back to Australia to be nearer to family. I would love to see him reboot Boumeester Composites again. Meanwhile I hope Crank Bro's keeps on running with his design work.
  • 1 0
 @privateer-wheels: Thanks, I stand corrected. I wasn't aware of these Bouwmeester/Crankbrothers rims and they seem neat too indeed. At the pressures we're riding at, I don't think having the tape right over the nipples would be that much of an issue unless the spokes are too long and protrude the nipple. And of course, most carbon rims have been brought to market when the bigger wheels were already getting more common so obviously we wouldn't find many offerings outside the DJ and slopestyle market (which the We Are One is targeting with their 26" Coup rim).

I just noticed I made an error in my initial post as well. I meant to say "... I definitely would NOT get ..." but it seems you understood that already. Either way you broadened my horizons a little too so thanks for that!
  • 1 0
 @vinay: No problem! And I assumed you meant *NOT* =)

On the tape directly on the nipples - pressure is not the issue that really registers for me either. The real issue is that these rims are very compliant and you can compress/distort the rims on impact pretty significantly, especially with these single wall hoops. Trouble is, spokes normally do not compress with the rim - they *try to* stay straight and all of as sudden you have the nipple and spoke pushing on the tape. the result is you are either tearing tape or putting stress on the spokes if the tape is stiff enough not to tear and compressing the spokes themselves, whereas they would normally just go slack and stay straight. None of these scenarios is great. With the Bouwmeester rims, the spokes have a little grace before they are pushing into the tape, and with a double wall rim they have a lot more grace, where tearing tape apart or putting undue stress on the spokes is very rare. For these reasons, the double wall is actually a nice thing.
  • 1 0
 @privateer-wheels: Oh wow, I wasn't aware these rims as so compliant that even properly tensioned spokes could go slack. But yeah if it is causing issues then that's plus 1 for double wall rims. Maybe we'll see more flexible spokes in the future (like Dyneema or an other aramid) where going slack isn't that much of an issue either. That is, if you actually allow it to bend out of the way and go slack as I understand aramid fibres fail under compression.
  • 1 0
 @vinay: This is the beauty of the modern spoked bicycle wheel, the rim is able to flex and bend on impact. All hoops have some degree of compliance, and on bigger hits the rim will flex enough that spokes go slack. You can look at various rim/wheel impact tests online and see this in action. See the video on this page:

www.notubes.com/stans-tech/riact
  • 1 0
 It is a bit strange that a large number of slope style riders use them seemingly without issue. Maybe rock and other trail debris strikes are more the issue that out right original strength.
I have had carbon, now on alloy slx. I don’t think it’s where I look to save a ton of weight. But understand why some would want to.
  • 2 0
 Only bars - went from alum to carbon and the difference is astonishing. 10 yrs no breaks and while I'd never do cranks or wheels, the bars are fine and far more supple than alum (in my view).
  • 1 0
 As a rule, I don’t break much, but last year, I tipped over in some loose sand at a very low speed. Rear triangle came down on a pointy rock, and I cracked the seat stay on my carbon frame. The good news was that it was repairable, and it looked and functioned as good as new afterward. The carbon repair guy said the seat stay is what he sees most — so maybe an aluminum rear triangle might be a good idea? Don’t know. Otherwise, the bike held up flawlessly for 2.5 seasons. But, I’ve got to say — never broke an aluminum frame. My bad luck still didn’t turn me away from carbon for my next bike. I’ll see how this one holds up before I swear off carbon altogether.
  • 1 0
 Interesting. I bought my first carbon frame this year, having broke 4 alloy frames in my life I figured now is as good a time as any to try carbon. The rear triangle on this frame was alloy and I snapped the chainstays by landing in a big compression in the trail, didn’t case or crash. I’m thinking alloy may not be my ally
  • 1 0
 @tfriesenftr: Either that or you just break stuff.
  • 1 0
 8 years on carbon frames, 1 broken (but also repairable) seat-stay. And it happened near Moab trying a big rocky step-up when I was hot and tired. (In other words, mostly my fault!) … although I’ve kept my Ti honzo and steel gravel bike for 4 years longer than any carbon frame I’ve owned at this point… so there’s that.
  • 1 0
 @TheR: if you rode konas through the 2000’s you would lose a few head tubes too
  • 1 0
 I was looking for an alum-framed bike, but ended up with a carbon Optic. First time I've had carbon anything (in this case cranks and frame).

I was looking at the 2020 A2 Sight and found it H E A V Y, so appreciate that carbon is noticeably lighter. I still don't think I'd buy another one, especially if there was a noticeable price premium.
  • 1 0
 In '99 or '00, I bought some sweet carbon bars and seatpost. They were high end and beautiful. I can't remember the name. In that same season, I was bombing an unfamiliar trail and came across some unexpected jumps that were way too close together for my speed. The handlebar snapped off on the right hand side. It was a spectacular crash. I went back to aluminum on both, even though the seatpost didn't break. I no longer trusted them. I've used carbon bars in more recent years with no issue, but I've never broken an aluminum bar no matter the crash.
  • 1 0
 Can we go back and talk a bit more about Chamois? You guys convinced me to ride without, and now my taint and surrounds don't feel so great.

How do you do it? Are you just one massive callus down there??? Was this all just a trick to mess with the most gullible of us?
  • 3 0
 It's all about picking the right seat. Everyone's different, but I've had good luck with the Ergon SM Enduro, Specialized Power, and the WTB Koda.
  • 1 0
 I started using a nukeproof San hill enduro saddle, and now I ride chamois free. Huge difference
  • 2 0
 Also, ride more. Commuting is a great way to get more miles in and saddle time. If you ride almost every day without the sham, before too long you won't need it except for big days.
  • 1 0
 I’ve been chamois free for a few years even before i switched to an SQLab saddle, which looks hideous but is the most comfortable saddle I’ve owned in 30+ years of riding. It’s definitely about getting in regular miles, and having a good interface with the bike (gloves/grips and shoes/pedals, too)
  • 1 0
 3000€ carbon XC race wheels are dumb when you can just buy a hand assembled set with Duke rims, Sapim spokes, and DT 240 hubs for 1450€.

r2-bike.com/Wheelset-29-XC-DT-Swiss-240-EXP-Straightpull-Center-Lock-Hubs-Duke-Lucky-Jack-SLS3-6Ters-30-28-Carbon-Rims-Shimano-Micro-Spline-Sapim-CX-Ray
  • 1 0
 More interested in Henry's small comment about Franco working with Citroen in the WRC than anything related to F1. Surely WRC experience is more applicable to mountain bike suspension - rough roads and jumps at high speeds, heavy impacts, weight transfer, blah, blah, blah. If it's good enough for Seb Loeb, it's good enough for me.
  • 1 0
 I am most often buying used frames and just don't want to risk buying a carbon frame that I don't know the history of. I would buy a buddy's carbon frame if he took care of it. Buying a frame from a stranger, not as keen on that. I saw a riding friend get destroyed when his carbon bars snapped back in 2005ish and I am admittedly still a bit shy of carbon. I know that modern carbon is way better and my shyness is not totally justified. I have a full luddite bike line up right now though. All my fleet is steel. I did just get some carbon rims though . . .
  • 1 0
 Ever since I was a kid I've broken things way more than any of my friends. I ride a 35 lb alloy SJ Evo, only carbon component is bars. I'm almost positive the second I got a carbon frame I'd break it so I've never even tried. I also live in CO where there's pointy rocks everywhere so maybe it's different where you've got fancy dirt with moisture in it
  • 1 0
 I haven’t ridden an EXT fork, but I have been working very closely with fox for 10 years. I can tell you they wouldn’t have a problem making a fork that would have all of the magical caractéristiques you would want if they weren’t restricted for price point and production.
How many EXT are made? How many models? Fox and rock Shox have to produce multiple models, travel etc.
I m not impressed that a company like EXT makes a good fork that cost twice as much as a high end fork from any of those companies that a pro riders can ride on.
I respect that it s a different and luxurious product, but I wouldn’t consider it a mainline product.
  • 1 0
 Been on a variety of carbon bits with mixed results so far. Had some NEXT cranks and pulled the pedal insert out. Also sheared off the carbon spider of another set of SIXC cranks mid ride. Classic JRA moments. No bar or seat post failures, thankfully, but I did crack a pair of Bonti Line 40s in two rides. I also sent back a Synthesis rear wheel for a hub rebuild and was told I’d cracked that rim, but I don’t recall how, and it did not cause a flat. Lifetime warranty took care of that. The carbon stays in my (2002?) Trek Liquid began to delam after a year or two, and the same happened to the Cdale Scalpel Team that I had shortly after. The carbon rocker on my OCLV Remedy frame began to fail on me after two seasons of hard riding, and the down tube of my Slash 9.7 developed a hairline crack in season three of equally hard use. All that said I also broke most of the last 8 or 10 alloy frames I can thank of starting with a ‘93 S-Works M2 hard tail, the ‘97 M4 that replaced it, then 4 of 5 Rockys, and a couple of Diamondbacks, and two steel road frames. Lesson: everything breaks, eventually. I think maybe what could have been mentioned in this episode is one’s expectations should be adjusted for this eventuality the longer you ride, AND also highlighting the value of developing good relationships with your LBS. Because in each of those MANY instances above, i can say I was able to get on a replacement frame or components by having that relationship to work from. I’m not rich but the one thing I give a rip about is bikes, so I tend to be really thoughtful with my purchases.
  • 1 0
 I just got some carbon cranks to upgrade my 175mm aluminum or "alloy" cranks to 170mm because of so many pedal strikes on rocky trails. I think I'm going to return them and get aluminum 170mm cranks because 5mm probably isn't going to eliminate the significant rock impacts, and I value my ankles too much! I think the mental aspect of feeling like I need to baby the carbon cranks and avoid rock impacts would by itself not be worth it.
  • 1 0
 The last couple of years I feel like I've seen some frames moving to a thermoplastic resin, touting higher impact strength (Guerilla Gravity is the first that comes to mind). Has anyone seen a significant improvement in durability of these frames- specifically in taking "sharper" impacts that would generally harm a standard carbon frame?
  • 1 0
 Head-angle: Isn't it curious that it needs to get flatter with each new generation? Did someone at PB check if the numbers are still real? I remember back in the 90s the geo numbers were rarely what they claimed to be but just there to say a bike is within the norm.

PB keeps saying how aluminium bike head-angles are off. Not sure where this info comes from, it seems the jigs don't leave room for error when welding and with the hydro formed tubing a frame wouldn't go together if the head-angle is off.
  • 1 0
 I look forward to my "pinkbike commenters race" invite. I have never claimed to be good at anything so I have nothing to prove but I will bring my bike for the "pinkbike wacky cobbled together bikes" contest that I proposed in February.
  • 1 0
 Question for the PB Team - I have a 2019 Mondraker Foxy. I broke the carbon seatsay and put a small crack in the downtube during a crash at the start of the season. A local carbon repair shop wrapped the broken areas and painted them to match the frame. Aesthetically, the bike looks great, I'd have to point out the repairs for someone to notice. I've been riding the bike all season with no structural issues and the repair job has a lifetime warranty on it. I'm not going to sell the frame anytime soon, but how much should a repair like this negatively effect resale value? I spent $400 on the repairs.
  • 1 0
 The problem with Carbon cranks is the way they fail usually and that is catastrophically. I have bent or stripped pedal threads in an alloy cranks but was able to make my way home with some duct tape and zipties but when I broke my carbon XO1 crank I was down to one pedal and coasting and luckily no injury.
  • 1 0
 Road tripping with my wife and made her listen to this podcast. My favorite so far…

She recommends carbon be used for bells and carbon cargo baskets to lighten up the bike. Her daily driver is my old Giant carbon 26” Cadex with aluminum joints bolted to a 20 lb steel framed basket for island cruising.
  • 2 2
 As long as it's got a legit lifetime warranty, I like it for frames and sometimes rims. No thanks for handle bars and cranks, too sketchy! And yes, I have broken and had non-issue carbon frame and rim warranties. In the end aluminum works just fine, just just doesn't often have the warranty beyond a year or two.
  • 3 1
 Honest question, Why should it be lifetime warranty? I don't know of many other consumer products, especially ones that get the crap beat out of them, that come with a lifetime warranty. I do know that most with a lifetime warranty have profit margins high enough to cover the cost of replacement.
  • 8 3
 @bman33: Because a $3000 wheelset is a lifetime investment for us normal folk.
  • 3 1
 @bman33: manufacturers have to offer a lifetime warranty inorder to sell high priced carbon items. Otherwise no one would be using/buying them. I recognize that likely only 10% (estimating, don't know actual stat) of people who buy carbon bike parts, submit a valid warranty claim. But the other 90% likes the comfort of knowing they have a lifetime warranty.
  • 2 6
flag bman33 (Sep 30, 2021 at 8:09) (Below Threshold)
 @tetonsorbuttes: So is a $250k house, or a $30k car....we don't see lifetime warranties on those. On a similar note, elective purchases purchases, but items such as home appliances, TV's, laptops, iphones, ipads, jetskis, boats, ATV's, etc are all expensive consumer items and none have 'lifetime' warranties and rightfully so. Yes, bikes are crazy expensive, but to ask for 'lifetime' warranties on a consumer level product that also get beaten up pretty steady is honestly unrealistic. Again, not discounting how expensive bikes are nowadays...
  • 4 2
 @bman33: lifetime warranty is just click bait
  • 1 0
 @WayneParsons: exactly...
  • 4 1
 @bman33: Dude. Every single mainstream carbon rim offers a lifetime warranty, Enve, Reserve, Revel, Roval, WAO, Nobl the list goes on. How is that unrealistic lol? It already exists! Same thing for a lot of carbon frames, Santa cruz, yeti, transition, etc. What are you smoking?
  • 3 0
 @lefthandohvhater: they offer it because their margins are high enough to cover replacement. I worked in the Industry for several years and this is common practice. In addition, folks have been brainwashed into thinking it's "needed" for carbon. If you read back through my comments I never ever mentioned that it didn't exist, I'm saying this is unrealistic. In addition it only drives up consumer costs for designers as well. Peculiar quirk in the bike industry
  • 3 1
 @bman33: Consumer costs for designers? What does that mean? Do you mean carbon manufacturers or graphic designers? Also congratulations for pulling back the curtain on the fact that carbon rims have margin. I was under the impression that they were giving them out as charity.
  • 2 0
 @lefthandohvhater: voice to text error, meant to read '...consumer costs for goods as well.' Your snark aside, I am saying ANY product: alloy rims, frames, etc. or Carbon Rims, Frames, etc.... that have a 'lifetime' warranty on them will automatically have an above average margin built into them to cover that warranty. This was going on all thru the 90's MTB boom (yes I am older) with frames, hubs, etc. etc . and the lifetime warranties back then. Every business should make money and I am 100% for that. That said, I stand firm on 'lifetime' warranty on most items is unrealistic and ends up just making what ever component or product sold with that warranty cost more.
  • 1 0
 Depends on what you mean by “lifetime.” It’s pretty well-known that “lifetime” is the life of the product, not your lifetime, or for as long as you own the product. Everything under the sun eventually wears out and breaks down. The argument is really what is a reasonable lifetime for a given product?
  • 1 0
 @TheR: I have not had issues making warranty claims with Santa Cruz, Specialized or Reserve (SC). Even several years after purchase. I keep my receipts and am using the products as intended. Very fast and appropriate warranty replacements. I do my research ahead of time to see what companies are honorable in their "lifetime warranty " claims. I do know of other brands that are not honorable.
  • 1 0
 @bman33: legit lifetime warranties have been economical for me. Definitely a factor in what brands I choose. And I have been submitting valid warranty claims on mtb products since about 1997. (I'm 165 lbs, not a big guy either).
  • 1 0
 I run carbon and aluminum bikes & wheels. My ENVE wheels lasted almost 5 years without any issue. They took care of it for $50. No complaints there. Never had to warranty a frame, thankfully.

All my DH/Gravity rigs are aluminum with DT hoops. IMHO, there's a place for everything.
  • 2 0
 I can't think of a single place on my bike that carbon fiber doesn't belong. And that includes inside the water bottle.
[tightens carbon fiber rotor bolts]
  • 3 0
 Asking this question is like asking if @mikelevy 's mini belongs on the road.. probably not but looks cool as f*ck!
  • 1 0
 Quality, well performing, and reliable parts belong on a mtb. The material used is just a design part of the real concern. People get too hung up on the “carbon” word for good or bad.
  • 1 0
 Great question. This discussion should bring as much heat as the wheelsize debate. My Gambler got a new rear wheel (hulkbike) and a Renthall riser bar for its first birthday. Loving them both..
  • 2 0
 I'm with Herny on the wheels, I have Onyx hubs and Stans Flow EX3 wheels. I love my high end hubs with $100 rims that if I go though one a season I'm not upset about.
  • 1 0
 I want to fully support Henry’s campaign to outlaw mispronunciation of aluminium, but it makes it harder that he doesn’t know how to pronounce the lastname of his coworker Mike Levy
  • 3 0
 Gee we are really getting to know Henry now, angry Henry came out to play in this episode LOL
  • 1 0
 Henry certainly adds some entertainment but sometimes he tries to serve the brit stereotyp too hard. The F1 comment sounded like he was married to Levy for far too long.
  • 1 0
 If you want to save the environment and you continue driving your old van that gets horrible fuel mileage while worrying about how green the materials on your bike are, you can't see the forest for the trees.
  • 1 0
 Dear Herny, the reason Cane Creek calls their headset the "Hellbender" isn't for the edgy name. Its named after the hellbender, a species of aquatic giant salamander. Who lives in the Eastern American mountains.
  • 3 0
 Anyone else think Brian Park sounds like Ross from Friends?
  • 2 0
 someone once told me they will never buy carbon rims until there is NO lifetime warranty "think about it"
  • 1 0
 Talking about wheels exploding. Have also done it with an aluminium Intense MAG30 over in west Kelowna when it was Westbank
  • 1 0
 Podcast idea: what bike related shit are you really nostalgic about. What do you wish still existed and what are you glad is dead and buried.
  • 2 0
 Please have Henry on every show. The things he says are pure Gold! I’m dying laughing.
  • 1 0
 So just to settle the debate, the original spelling of the alloy in question is ALUMINUM. And it was discovered and named by a British scientist.
  • 1 0
 Carbon Fiber grips will be the next big thing. Don't have to worry about catastrophic failure and sheds a ton of weight.
  • 2 0
 Long answer: no.
Short answer: no.
  • 2 1
 In DH applications, definitely not. XC, Road, gravel, etc, then 100% yes. Carbon cranks? Never.
  • 1 0
 Anyone want to hear a horror story involving a carbon fiber seat I was stupid enough to mount?? No?
  • 2 1
 I would choose Aluminium frame with better components any time over carbon with lesser components.
  • 2 1
 How about a fat bike in the impossible climb .rather see that than an ebike .
  • 2 0
 Henry, contribute to the chat! Henry, say something nice
  • 1 0
 PB crew, I think it would be really funny if you did an race including everybody on the team.
  • 1 1
 Could your next opinion poll also include a question about...say.....vaccines? Just really curious to know if we might see any correlation.
  • 1 0
 The only carbon on my bike is the frame. My next bike will probably have an aluminum frame.
  • 1 0
 I t-boned a car going 25mph with a full carbon road bike and it survived. I even use the handlebar 4 years later.
  • 1 0
 Looking forward to seeing the PB crew racing Mt 7 Psychosis on hardtails next year. Tom set the bar high!
  • 1 0
 I’m just gonna say it, Henry Quinney needs to be in all the podcasts!! This man is freakin Hilarious!!!
  • 1 0
 I only went the carbon on wheels route once, 4 spokes Spinergys and did not went well... ok ok it was in Jurassic age but...
  • 2 2
 Didn't know where else to say it....IS THAT OUTSIDE AT THE TOP OF THE WEBSITE????
  • 1 1
 yep, hahaha, sadly it is...

ps: your user name is stupid
  • 2 11
flag Mtn-Goat-13 (Sep 30, 2021 at 9:17) (Below Threshold)
 Here we go again - the sub-teen whining gripe-n-b**** club that can't stay on topic and has only diarrhea to add to the page here. Suggestsions:

1) grab the scroll bar & go down the page: gone
2) don't look at it
3) stop going to PB pages
4) quit yr whining because it means nothing and last:
5) every product & service you own from electricity, computers and ESPECIALLY your precious bike & bike parts companies are all subsidiaries of subsidiaries of subsidiaries. Boo hoo hoo hoo hoo !!!

Do you b**** about your brake, shock, fork, tire, wheel or other bike gear owned by all these owned companies as much as you & others gripe about PB being owned by Outside? Betcha don't...
  • 5 0
 @Mtn-Goat-13: haha, it is just a meme man, people will stop complaining about it in a few months

also, dont complain about complainers
  • 1 0
 If can it lower consumer costs, carbon belongs!
  • 2 1
 Get Bradshaw on the next podcast
  • 1 0
 Does anyone find Henry very self-righteous and annoying?
  • 1 0
 Yep
  • 1 0
 DVO Jade upside down downhill fork uses carbon arch for stiffness
  • 1 0
 How about carbon Chamois?
  • 1 0
 Henry was wasted on gmbn. So happy he's here and saying fuck a lot
  • 1 0
 What are your thoughts on angle headsets?
  • 1 0
 Actually the RC episodes were pretty awesome too. Thanks all
  • 2 1
 Not on mine
  • 3 6
 The worst anti-clickkbait title ever. The answer is no and I now I don't need to listen to it???
  • 1 0
 AAAALOOOOOOMINUMM!!!!
  • 1 2
 Please no more Henry Quinney!! He’s making us Brits look bad by constantly laughing at his own sarcasm and analogies
  • 1 0
 How bout dat
  • 1 0
 Nope
  • 2 2
 Spelt fibre wrong
  • 1 0
 Are you making fibrous bread?
  • 1 0
 Spelled “spelt” correctly!
  • 2 5
 Any day, any time, you corporate mtb feeding tube-fed squamish dorks would go down to me in a commenter's race
  • 8 0
 A downhill race or a mountain bike race?
  • 2 0
 @mikelevy: Love the idea of a PB open race! Probably won't make it up to Canada this year, but sounds like a good reason for a trip.
  • 1 1
 @mikelevy:

Any discipline where smuggling grapes doesn't offer a distinct performance advantage
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