Monday, August 1

Predictably Unpredictable

"This will be a weekend of competing agendas." ~ me

It was.

That thing I wanted to "test" this weekend:

Elliptical ring.  I've sorta been down this road before... July '10 to be exact.

History, good or bad, will repeat itself.

So yeth, I wanted a good run at it on Saturday, but yeth, I was doomed to fail before I made it to the official weekend.

I got the email that my long awaited Fox Step Cast 32 fjork arrived at the shop on Friday.  So my plan to run home, eat, shower, head to the directly to the Booty Loop to spectate... foiled.  Must has the precious.  

The Pie assisted me in making all my dreams come true.  The fjork at the house, and then me off to the Booty Loop.  At first, the luau party was mostly people less dirty than the individuals that I find myself in the company of on any normal evening.  Me thinking about my fjork being at home alone... in a box in a dark room.  Sadness.  I could be putting it on my bike right now.

But then the dirty people started to trickle in.  Before I know it, I've joined the Spoke Easy mayhem on the Col de Hopedale. 

And then it's 12:30AM.  Shit.

Go home, toss my personal effects asunder and go to bed.

Up early and fight my way through the self-induced brain fog.  Coffee.

Grab the tools of the non-trade.

Some of my tools are the real deal.  Others?  They work fine also.

Basil said he would join me on my ride later that morning.  Mount up the fork with not much ado... prolly one of the easier things to do for the home mechanic that found a pipe cutter in the ditch.  Guess at the settings on all the knobs and such and head out the door.

Noble goals of riding the whole 30 miles at the USNWC.  Head towards the north loops first... Figure 8 is closed.  Shit.  There's a drop-off on that loop that I know if I was ever gonna bottom a fjork out on, that's where I'd do it... meh.

We wind our way over to the Thread Trail.  Hop on Academy.  My head hurts.  My tummy has sympathy pains.  It's either the heat, my dehydrated state going into this ride, hangover leftovers, of not enough food in the last 24 hours.  Trbl.  I can't remember the last time I felt this no bueno.

I cut my ride off at right around 16-17 miles.  Ded.

Came home, ate everything, chocolate milk, showered, nap...

As long as I can call sleeping for an hour and a half in the middle of the day a "nap."

Wake up covered in drool.  Come to the realization that the reason that I hate napping so much is because I hate getting out of bed, so why would I do it twice in one day?

Anyways, gonna need more ride time on the fjork to figure it out and whether or not we work well together.  Comparing it to the plush but solid ride of a Pike or a rigid crabon ENVE frok isn't really apples to oranges by any means. 

My goal here was to give myself options.  I don't much like dragging the Pike-equipped Stickel around on local trails.  Don't always want to tax my joints (I've been told it takes a toll) with the rigid frok, no matter how much I prefer it.  When I ordered this thing, I had some races in mind.  Pisgah 111k for one.  That was months ago.  Now?  Maybe the Shenadoah Mountain 100?  Out of ten starts, I've only had a suspension fork once back in 2012.

I remember feeling nonplussed about the whole experience and ended up10th place single speed @ 9:02 finish time.  Shit, I did a 9:07 with a deadly hangover (thanks, Watts) on a mile longer course last year.  I also remember selling that fjork (that I'd only had for a month) right after the race.

History, good or bad, will repeat itself.

Anyways, about that fjork.

Everything I read before I bought it said that clearance is supposed to be restricted to 2.3 tires, but...

I think that's more of a suggestion.  I got a Maxxis Ardent 2.4 in there.  I realize that mebbe I'm being a total dumb ass by not eschewing the portly tire for something a little more svelte, being that I don't need all that volume if I'm not riding rigid, but I am, if not anything else, ignorant.

Groovy how they did this:

If groovy also means strange, but at least it's not inverted.

I'd planned on stickering over the back of the arch because I hate mud buildup in the nooks and crannies, but...
I don't think they'll stick to such little surface area.  Guess I'll just blast it with a hose after riding in the muck.

Srsly.  If there was a way to save weight, they did it.  Check out my red knob.

So anyways, there was only one drop that I thought I might be able to land a little nose heavy to see if I could bottom out the fjork.  I don't know how else to really test for proper air pressure.

photo cred: Basil
Photo snapped on impact.  Results?

Mebbe 88 or 89mm total? Dunno.  So prolly less air in there, I guess.

I've got two to three more rides max before SSUSA and then I leave for Duwango Tango Mancation '16... and then two days later I'm on my way to the Shenandoah Mountain 100.

Plenty of time (not really).

More about my going pear-shaped on an oval-shaped ring later this week.


Anonymous said...

stay rigid and just replace your neck shoulders and wrists later.
that oval is gonna weck yo spin brah!

Mike P said...

As soon as I saw the pvc pipe I knew what it was for and realized I have been putting bottom races on the hard way. I refuse to call you a genius but damn. Off to the hardware store...

Chris said...

I hated the oval on SS. Are you going to carry a round with you in case a mid ride swap is necessary?

Anonymous said...

You may have considered or even already tried this, but how about a 29+ up front on occasions when you'd like just "a litte" squish? I absolutely despise running a suspension fork on a SS. The 29+ takes some of the compromise out of rising rigid.

dicky said...

I've tried it. It's okay, but makes the front a little self-steering. Also... just trying something different.

Anonymous said...

Have you ridden a Trek Stache? It's as nimble as any 29er I've ever had/ridden. Not even remotely close to just throwing a 29+ on the front of some bike. Tried that as well.

dicky said...

I basically own the OG short stay 29er, the By:Stickle. The stays on my Vertigo are just as short.

My issue with plus sized 29er tires is that they are more rubber than I want to sling around. Sure, fun on the descents and twisties, but not so easy for a tiny person to accelerate.

I'm good without it for now.