I woulda hoped to have things a little more tightened up before heading into the holy hell that is the last few weeks leading up to the Trans-Sylvania Epic.
Pisgah 111k or the 55.5k or neither or both. Either which way, it will be wet. Traction will be nonexistent. Speed less of an important thing coming down the mountain than safety. I have my concerns. Even worse, I've got a very limited amount of time to get everything ready to go before heading to Pennsylvania. Tearing down and rebuilding my bike (or bikes) on top of all that? Meh. The potential for worn-out pads, sticky pistons, shot bearings, possibly sticky drooper cable... might make for the first ever case of bike-related arson for insurance purposes.
Then there's the TSE itself (in regards to the 27.5+ topic). It's a different beast than Pisgah. Hard to explain it, but it just is. The roots and rocks are not the same. Where there are rocks, they are in piles. The roots, less frequent. Some of the trails really jam, boogie, twist and turn... traction would be nice here too.
But here's the thing. I read this article over on Dirt Rag, and this tiny tidbit about the minuses of plus sized tires hit me:
" ...sidewalls can be susceptible to cuts."
I've had one sidewall cut within a month of riding 27.5+. Maybe the second sidewall cut I've ever had since going tubeless back in... '01 or '02? Who can remember?
Anyways, Chase joins me in jumping on the plusser bandwagon, but he can't get the Maxxis tires in his hands soon enough. He settles on Schwobbles and ends up with a sidewall cut minutes into his first ride. I write it off as well, because... Schwobbles.
So with my experience combined with Chase's and validated by the article on Dirt Rag, I have concern. Being that I'm no longer an "industry" insider douchebag, I don't have direct channels, but I still have the FaceBook social media back door. I asked Eric for some clarification.
"My own sample size isn't big enough to discuss the prevalence of sidewall cuts." ~ Eric
Which just confuses me more because why is it mentioned in the article?
So here I am, halfway between a tire/wheel swap wondering if I should take the time to remove the Tomahawk 2.3, replace it with a Rekon 2.8, swap wheels and cogs, figure out (again) how to reset my computer to the smaller diameter, move the wheel magnet over... I don't know what else.
Or leave all this shit alone, run what I know/brung, and wait until post-TSE June to do some more riding/evaluating.
But should I bother when an expert as already done this for me?
He never once tested the tires on a climb (I guess all their trails and gravel roads are downhill). He used a full suspension bike, so does this even apply to someone riding a rigid single speed? In the end, I just wished I had a cool accent.
I can't imagine taking two sets of wheels to a local trail, figuring out a good place to put STRAVA to good use, doing multiple runs and wheel swaps... and actually caring enough to do all that in the first place.
Oh well. What to do?
Tic toc. Tic toc.
Now, do I warm up my allergy excuse or keep my pounding sinuses in my back pocket?