Sunday, October 3, 2010

The Mountain Bike is Evolving

This all started last Saturday when I noticed a bit of play on the drive side crank on the Trek. It appeared as though the BB had come slightly loose. As soon as I got home, I whipped off the cranks and was bemused to say the least, when the BB cup was not just a bit loose it actually just fell out. Completely stripped was the thread on the cup and inside the frame. Not quite what I was hoping for just 2 weeks out from the worlds.

Importantly I want to share with you some intel on why I think this happened so you can avoid it happening to you (Thanks to Mark at TMC for explaining). The Trek has a 68mm wide BB, Standard Shimano BB is made for 73mm, so you will usually find a couple of spacers on the drive side if your BB is 68mm. Problem here is that leaves precious little thread to actually screw into the frame. It only has to get a tiny bit loose and then the resulting play will see the metal slowly grind away. So the answer is to only have one spacer on the drive side, this gives you a better chain line to use the granny anyway which isnt all bad.

OK slight diversion back to the main story

So I head into the shop, yeah they can fix but "When am I going to get my first Carbon frame?" they ask. It is clear the Trek's racing days are numbered even if they can fix, so perhaps it is time to think about my next serious bike purchase.

The Giant was pretty cheap and was really just a long term tester to see if the 29er was right for me. Big tick in that box.

So we have a bit of a chat about what is available, I would like to strip down the Giant and reuse my upgraded parts. A hardtail carbon frameset is what I need. And then they introduce me to the Ellsworth Enlightenment 29er.

I'll admit it was love at first sight.

Mark and Simey did an awesome job of fitting me up and looking at the best setup for me and long story short, just one week later I have my Trek back, I have a nice clean Giant 29er frame looking for a new home and I now have an absolute rocket carbon race bike.

This bike is amazing to ride, it's plush and compliant but with plenty of lateral strength, it climbs like nothing I have ridden before and simply floats over water bars, take as much air as you want, this puppy just flies and lands level everytime.

It's a gorgeous bike, let's face it, alot of this sport has to do with how things look and rolling up to the bunch Saturday morning their was certainly a few raised eyebrows as the group appraised the latest incarnation of off road cycling.

Congratulations Ellsworth, now I see why you have such a loyal following, add another convert to your list of riders and thanks again to Turramurra Cyclery for the amazing job you did in getting me on this bike in time for the Worlds.
One sad little footnote to this story is the roadie is gone. The faithful Wilier Evasion that has bore me over many a kilometre in the last three years had to go. The theory behind n+1 bikes is all well and good but it doesnt do much for the bank balance. I am sad to see this bike go, I have simply loved riding it, but it goes to a good mate who I know will get alot of enjoyment from her.

Keep riding


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