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Braff Zacklin

The Surly Mountain Biking Thread

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On 6/7/2018 at 4:39 PM, Braff Zacklin said:

Disc brakes are one of the best and most necessary innovations for mountain biking.

Truth.

 

They are actually the only best and necessary one imo. MTB design hit it's apex in the late 90's and everything since has been utter garbage.

 

On 6/8/2018 at 7:09 AM, Loco said:

 

anybody remember this glorious bastard...  

tinker_%2315.jpg

 

 

Johnny Tomac or GTFO.

 

I'm actually partial from MIssy Giove's crazy ass, she's born and raised here in VB like me, and my age.

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4 minutes ago, Loco said:

You take Missy, I'll take Marla...

 

 

MarlaStreb.jpg

Well, Missy likes chicks, so we can all take Marla.

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Got out on some singletrack this morning.  I think the suspension is going to help quite a bit with the sort of nameless fatigue I mentioned upthread that comes from the constant pounding of a hardtail.  Despite all of the various things that should make this bike slower than my hardtail, I am pretty sure I was faster on this.  While I was going slow to sort of suss things out, I found myself going too damn fast for a few trail features.

 

Pretty sure I'm glad I went with the 29er.  It's twitchy enough to get me in trouble until I get used to it.

 

No real cool trail pix yet, but ladies and gentlemen, 780mm bars:

 

nqv9s2.jpg

 

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One ding for passing on starboard, two dings to leave them to your starboard?

 

giphy.gif

 

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5 hours ago, Loco said:

One ding for passing on starboard, two dings to leave them to your starboard?

 

giphy.gif

 

Haha. PB installed a bell for me.  I thought it was kind of cute.  I havent removed the reflectors yet, either.  I will leave the bell.

I suppose the real answer with the 780 bars is that you can cut them down to whatever you want, but I was somewhat surprised that those long bars are actually a thing, mostly for downhill, apparently.

That particular gate has a bypass, no other gates on this trail posed a problem.  Glad I stopped (it's the only one I stopped for), cuz it looks like you could hit both ends simultaneously.  Wonder what that looks/feels like?  Can't be good, but probably not as bad as clipping one side real hard.

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Also, tell me about thru axles.  This one has no QR-type levers, which is ok as I carry a little tool in an underseat wedge.  But in looking around on them, it appears that they are grease and torque sensitive.  I guess that means do your best to keep shit clean and don't overtorque if you have a trail incident (and I guess tubeless cures all these issues) and fix it up nice back home.

 

Do levers offer any advantage?  Is Stan's still the way to go with tubeless?

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25 minutes ago, TwiceHorn said:

Also, tell me about thru axles.  This one has no QR-type levers, which is ok as I carry a little tool in an underseat wedge.  But in looking around on them, it appears that they are grease and torque sensitive.  I guess that means do your best to keep shit clean and don't overtorque if you have a trail incident (and I guess tubeless cures all these issues) and fix it up nice back home.

 

Do levers offer any advantage?  Is Stan's still the way to go with tubeless?

Are they 5mm hex driven? I just carry the keys in the axles.

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34 minutes ago, G650 said:

Are they 5mm hex driven? I just carry the keys in the axles.

The rear is 5mm, the front (Maxle Stealth) is 6mm.  Mine are open on the ends without the wrench hole.  I could see with the levers perhaps the angle of the lever serving as a rough torque indicator.  I need a little torque wrench I guess.

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Also, tell me about thru axles.  This one has no QR-type levers, which is ok as I carry a little tool in an underseat wedge.  But in looking around on them, it appears that they are grease and torque sensitive.  I guess that means do your best to keep shit clean and don't overtorque if you have a trail incident (and I guess tubeless cures all these issues) and fix it up nice back home.
 
Do levers offer any advantage?  Is Stan's still the way to go with tubeless?


I’ve had Stan’s on 3 bikes and will continue. No issues at all.

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Congrats on the new bike.  1x11 is indeed awesome.

Re: tubeless, I've always used Stan's and had good results.  In the summer I find I need to add more or replace every couple months. 

Lots of people swear by Orange Seal, though I haven't personally used it.  But they are a local company.

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3 minutes ago, G650 said:

Your bike isn't legit till there's a kids seat adapter on it.

 

20180625_184514.jpg

Take the kiddo shredding some gnar?  Makes it easy to manual I bet.

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3 minutes ago, TwiceHorn said:

Makes it easy to manual I bet.

True story. MTB geo isn't made for hanging 35 lbs off the back. 

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Five rides down and really enjoying the full squish.  I'm not in very good shape but am repeating loops with some gusto and riding as long or longer than on my hardtail  when I have been in much better shape, which I attribute to less bone jarring fatigue.  Still mostly on singletrack while I get used to the handling and those long-ass bars (which I think I kinda like).

 

If anyone is looking for a lower price upgrade or an entry level bike, I highly recommend the new Marins.

Edited by TwiceHorn

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9 hours ago, TwiceHorn said:

I highly recommend the new Marins.

 

I just realized maybe I should ask you lot to keep an eye out as well. I'm looking for a 1992-1994 Marin Muirwoods or Palisades Trail. If you randomly happen to see one on Craigslist or whatever please give me a heads up.

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55 minutes ago, Loco said:

what's the fascination?

You mean why am I look9ng for those in particular? They are my favorite geometry ever. And I want steel, not aluminum.

 

ETA: I have a Fisher already for an aluminum bike. The other frame I'm on the lookout for is a 1996 Procaliber, for a carbon bike. Last one got broken :/

Edited by G650

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If you are a "steak is real guy". I'd look for a vintage Fat chance and fix that up...   it would be worth some cash when your done.   

i like steal, but I'm too fat for epic bb sway....

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34 minutes ago, Loco said:

If you are a "steak is real guy". I'd look for a vintage Fat chance and fix that up...   it would be worth some cash when your done.   

i like steal, but I'm too fat for epic bb sway....

Well. Steak is real...

 

Man I'd love to find a Fat, but I've got a better chance of finding a unicorn. I remember seeing one in the local shop for the first time back in like 1988. I did search Ebay for a Fat Chance on a whim a couple months ago.

 

If you see a Yo Eddy for sale let me know.

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Thoughts:

In the seven seasons that I have been riding tubeless, I have irreparably flatted four times--once when I sliced a side wall, once more when a knob tore off, and twice this season with simple punctures through the tread casing. The first two instances would've occurred regardless of sealant; the latter two should not have happened ... except I was using Orange Seal. So fuck that shit. Once my economy jug is empty, I am going back to Stan's. Hike-a-bike is less fun that previously indicated.

 Also--steak is indeed real. Steel even more so. I can descend at speeds through chatter on my steel hardtail that would've beaten me to death on previous aluminum-framed hardtails. Granted, I'm still faster on my squishy, but not by as much as one would think.

Only hesitation for steel in your neck of the woods would be moisture and rust. If you have the cash, consider titanium--it'll last you a lifetime.

But steel in Idaho is nearly as good, just heavier.

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I never really jived with titanium off road for whatever reason. I had a Merlin, Marin and Litespeed back in the day but moved them all fairly quickly.

The main corrosion issue here is in components. The only place on the frame you need to be careful with is the BB shell threads, but really as long as you maintain remotely worth a fuck it's not an issue. I've always usues Ti fasteners over the years though. 

 

I would like to have a Moots Vamoots one day, but I never seem to have room for it. I'd like a Pegoretti first.

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9 hours ago, G650 said:

Well. Steak is real...

 

Man I'd love to find a Fat, but I've got a better chance of finding a unicorn. I remember seeing one in the local shop for the first time back in like 1988. I did search Ebay for a Fat Chance on a whim a couple months ago.

 

If you see a Yo Eddy for sale let me know.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1993-18-FAT-CHANCE-WICKED-LITE-FRAME-FROM-MASSACHUSETTS/292621930289?hash=item4421a04f31:g:PCQAAOSw1qtbNYcO

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Fat-Chance-Frameset-Rigid-Steel-Mountain-Bike-MTB-17in-Chris-King-26er/163123790089?hash=item25faef8109:g:gUoAAOSwW9FbMTVp

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meh, just take it to a radiator shop.... strip it and clear coat + stickers...  but that won't help you with the size

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16 minutes ago, Loco said:

meh, just take it to a radiator shop.... strip it and clear coat + stickers...  but that won't help you with the size

The only reason we had Fats in the local shop here is one if the guys I went to school with knew Chris Chance. Jason had this custom tie dye painted Eddy. It was yellow and red similar to the Procaliber that year. I may or may not have touched myself inappropriately thinking about that bike.

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Went on a group ride this morning on a trail with a bit more gnar than what I have been riding.  Finally clipped a tree and ate it, but not on a gate, no harm done. Group rides are weird, kinda screws with my steering/seeing because I don't look as far ahead as normal.

 

Anyway, the sensation of floating over really rooty or rocky stuff is weird.  Almost feels sort of out of control (I suppose if I duplicated the feeling on my hardtail, I probably would be out of control).  . Or am I weird or do I need to adjust the shocks some?  I deferred on a couple of drops that were routine on my hardtail a couple of years ago, partly because I hadn't seen them in a year or two and partly because I feel like I am still getting used to the bike.  Don't know if its the bars or all the squish, but my steering feels kind of sloppy at times and I don't trust myself coming out of a drop on line.

 

I don't get why steering feels sort of sloppy (not as in slop in the headset, but directionally imprecise).  The head tube is 2.5 degrees slacker than my hardtail, but the tires are wider and the fork more compliant, but those bars and short stem (which should sort of cancel each other out) maybe.  I don't know.  Maybe it's just the different steering inputs have me kind of flummoxed.

Edited by TwiceHorn

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maybe the forks are twisting...  doesn't matter, point an shoot...  the bike will do the work you used to do.  stay back and just float that shit. (line?  what line?)

Edited by Loco

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8 hours ago, G650 said:

 I may or may not have touched myself inappropriately thinking about that bike.

Oh, I know....

 

 

s1600_137617401970985_bb.jpg?1376179190

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4 minutes ago, Loco said:

Oh, I know....

 

 

s1600_137617401970985_bb.jpg?1376179190

The only mods I would make to the 1996 Procaliber would be to put a Fox shock on it and a Thompson seatpost...

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1 hour ago, Loco said:

maybe the forks are twisting...  doesn't matter, point an shoot...  the bike will do the work you used to do.  stay back and just float that shit. (line?  what line?)

Yeah I guess I'm just getting more feedback from the front wheel and not used to countering it.  Turning is a little different with those wide-ass bars, too.  1x is so choice, though.  Although I moved my brakes in for one-finger and got the upshift tab where I had to strain to reach it.  That was uncool.

 

I just need to give it a bit more time, I think.  There's some short stretches of crunchy shit on the most nearby trail, and I can ride that to figure out what's what.

 

I also figured out that I need to get one of those top tube things for my trunk rack.  Or get a hitch installed and a hitch rack.  I hate spending money on that kind of shit.

Edited by TwiceHorn

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4 hours ago, Loco said:

Oh, I know....

 

 

s1600_137617401970985_bb.jpg?1376179190

My first mtb was a GT Talera.  I lusted after the Zaskar.  But this...

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I kind of envy you guys with history in the sport.  I'm 52, BMX bikes just showed up a couple of years before bikes became uncool.  I had a few friends that ditched their Sting Rays for Redlines and Mongeese, but soon abandoned it all.  No bike parks, not much of anything but trying to jump garbage cans on homemade ramps.  I had a coaster-brake Sting Ray, Jr (I think, 20" wheels in the event), with BMX bars and knobby tires, but didn't learn to do anything but wheelie with it.  Manuals and bunny hops weren't in my vocabulary until my late 40s I guess.

 

Edited by TwiceHorn

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Was riding BMX from 9-14yrs old...   rode so many hours everyday....  including a paper route morning and evening.  Lived on my Kos Kruiser.   When I got into mountain bikes in college I loved riding with Roadies...  so many of them were convinced they needed toe clips to hop the bike....  it'd blow their minds when I would get on their rig, not strap in and hop up on benches...over curbs.   But on the ride to and from the trail heads I was working just to stay on their wheel.

Started off with a Trek 7000...   great starter bike

 

 

Edited by Loco

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My first mountain bike was the Paramount PDF Series 40. I wish still had it. That was around 1989 or 90, I think.

 

Then in 1999 I built a Specialized Stumpjumper. I think the frame was a 1997. Also wish I had it still, but sold it to a friend. He rode the hell out of it for a few years and sold it.

 

IHJA2RVT_o.jpeg

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I was fortunate to be of the perfect age to ride the coming mountain bike wave in the 80's, plus lived in an area that was a hotbed of it and had a few pros, some of who I was friends with. It was just a matter of circumstance and good fortune mostly. It's also ironic that Virginia Beach ended up being such a mountain bike town, as we have no real riding here whatsoever, you have to go to the western part of the state, but you can still see it today. There are no casual hybrid or commuter bike riders, you use a MTB to get around town. Even super working class people get around with Kmart mountain bikes to and from work. Hell, even the homeless people have them. I got my first MTB in 1986, a Diamondback. Then I upgraded to a real bike shortly thereafter with a Yokota Tuolumne. And kinda went on from there. I'm not into like I used to be, partly because the sport has gotten a little over commercialized and changed in ways I'm not into, and partly because I'm a lot more into road riding, but a mountain bike is always going to be the default in my mind when I think of "bicycle".

 

BMX was pretty big here too in the 90s, but not quite as much. There were some nice ass Redlines and GTs around.

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So I was born and raised in Va Beach.  As a kid in the late 70s/early-mid 80s we rode BMX and Beach cruisers... My Brother still has his Worksman cruiser. I don't remember mountain bikes really hitting the scene there.  I think I saw my first "real mountain bike" in '87-ish, two years after I left Va Beach.

As for no off road riding in Va Beach:

  •  we used to take old 10 speeds my dad modded with cruiser tires all over Seashore State park and blueberry hill area. (needed 10 speed granny gear for sugar sand) - fun but ultimately not very satisfying
  • Climb/ bomb the hill by John B Dey (I think they built the "new" Great Neck road over it) where they found the Indian artifacts
  • Bombing through Seashore State Park to get to 64th st to meet friends down at the beach

mostly we would build ramps or jumps off of trails or street ride....   I demolished so many trash cans with a kickout...

sooo many miles on a Uni seat, and even more scares from the Suntour bear trap pedals

dsc_0020_copy0_blowup.jpg

Not mine, but close...  just add uni seat, vector bars, and turbox cranks

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22 minutes ago, Loco said:

So I was born and raised in Va Beach.  As a kid in the late 70s/early-mid 80s we rode BMX and Beach cruisers... My Brother still has his Worksman cruiser. I don't remember mountain bikes really hitting the scene there.  I think I saw my first "real mountain bike" in '87-ish, two years after I left Va Beach.

As for no off road riding in Va Beach:

  •  we used to take old 10 speeds my dad modded with cruiser tires all over Seashore State park and blueberry hill area. (needed 10 speed granny gear for sugar sand) - fun but ultimately not very satisfying
  • Climb/ bomb the hill by John B Dey (I think they built the "new" Great Neck road over it) where they found the Indian artifacts
  • Bombing through Seashore State Park to get to 64th st to meet friends down at the beach

mostly we would build ramps or jumps off of trails or street ride....   I demolished so many trash cans with a kickout...

sooo many miles on a Uni seat, and even more scares from the Suntour bear trap pedals

dsc_0020_copy0_blowup.jpg

Not mine, but close...  just add uni seat, vector bars, and turbox cranks

 

Man, that Worksman is worth a fucking mint here now.

 

Anyhoo, the Red Mill/Derby Run/Ocean Lakes crowd were the BMX nuts. They had all the hot bikes. And pretty good mullets too. The Oceanfront was and still is all MTB. Oceanfront Bikes in the old WRV building was where my buddy who knew Chris Chance worked. Got my Yokota there in '87 or '88? '85 was the big breakout year for mountains bikes that I can recall. I remember seeing a Nishiki and Fisher for the first time then. North End Bikes was the Marin and Trek dealer. Conte's and Freewheelin were late to the MTB party, they were more mainstream shops. Conte's sold Specialized though.

 

Seashore State park still the same as it ever was (except they renamed it First Landing, but I refuse to call it that). We used to ride back in the trails by the Tarmac yard here at the Oceanfront, off Oceana Blvd and the railroad tracks. Also down by Dam Neck, but that was much later.

 

Edit: And hell yes, street ramps. Always pilfered building sites for scrap wood. My cousin broke her arm once on a ramp. I also flew into the side of a house trying to jump one on a Jamis beach cruiser.

Edited by G650

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Ever ride Mount Trashmore's old concrete Skatepark? (the one that looked like a swimming pool running down hill)  Ho Lee Shit!  I did that on a shitty old 70's METAL skateboard!    A Lot more fun on a BMX bike.  RIP

 

This is my beach cruiser now....  Marin Drake's Beach....  simple aluminium, light.  I can bunny hop basketball and I don't feel like a pussy when I'm hanging it up in the garage.

f_66983_1.1.jpg

Also note my bars are narrower than TwiceHorn's

 

But I would do bad things for this...

core77-dutch-master-bicycle-1.jpg?w=500&

Edited by Loco

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Ye Olde Mount Trashmore Park was the best. Can't believe they tore down the vert ramp too. I mean Tony Hawk skated that thing! The new park is pretty meh.

 

It's funny, probably only half the people here ride beach cruisers, and they are usually from Kempsville. You can spot a lot of the beach kids from our generation by riding MTBs with BMX bars for comfort. I still flat bar it, fuck it. #barendsforlife

A Worksman always has cred though. Need a beach cruiser fanatic thread. Got the wife one of the Townie aluminum bikes (she's a Kellam grad), it's pretty nice I have to say.

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Rode some single track with my fat bike last night.  I'm definitely seeing the fruits of persistence pay off.  I climbed well and descended faster than I have previously.  I can feel my technical control improving, and my strength to climb improving.  I've started running pretty low PSI and that makes a big difference, especially in your ability to control descents.

Didn't stop for pics or anything, but it's good to get positive affirmation that this hasn't been a waste of time/money.

Should be able to get in a pretty good ride tomorrow, same park as I rode Memorial Day weekend.

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1 hour ago, Loco said:

 

DT Swiss spokes too???

time-to-fap-meme.jpg

 

52 minutes ago, Al_4_ISU said:

Rode some single track with my fat bike last night.  I'm definitely seeing the fruits of persistence pay off.  I climbed well and descended faster than I have previously.  I can feel my technical control improving, and my strength to climb improving.  I've started running pretty low PSI and that makes a big difference, especially in your ability to control descents.

Didn't stop for pics or anything, but it's good to get positive affirmation that this hasn't been a waste of time/money.

Should be able to get in a pretty good ride tomorrow, same park as I rode Memorial Day weekend.

 

Good shit. Low psi is where it's at. I'm glad popular opinion has finally caught up there.

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21 minutes ago, G650 said:

 

 

 

Good shit. Low psi is where it's at. I'm glad popular opinion has finally caught up there.

I don't know that it helps climbing (I think that depends on surface conditions), but it's a big deal on descents.  Or at least obvious to my low level of skill/experience that it's advantageous.

My brother is a big proponent of low PSI, and he's always been way ahead of where I'm at with bikes so I listen when he chimes in on that kind of thing.

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