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Underneath the robe you find a man. Underneath the man you find his nucleus.

2 Saddles I Really Like

Posted by RL Policar On January - 23 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

There’s 2 brand/models I’ve really enjoyed the last few years of riding. The first one is the Serfas TGU-1 Tegu Titanium from 2010.Though this particular model has been discontinued, Serfas does offer other current year models of the Tegu priced around $55.

Serfas Tegu

The next choice is the WTB Speed V. This model is readily available through most online retails and the average price hovers around $30.
WTB SpeedV

I highly recommend each brand/model due to the fact they are super comfy. But don’t worry they aren’t too wide where you can’t get a full leg extension. Oh by the way, both saddles are 29er compatible!

A new to me trail

Posted by RL Policar On January - 21 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

This past Saturday Animal showed up to our ride at Whiting Ranch. He rolls up and tells us he had just finished a lap and was looking to add more miles that morning. One of our other buddies J-Kewl joined us for this ride. By the way, all the photos were courtesy of Lady P and Animal.
whiting ranch
Animal tells us about a section of Whiting Ranch that not many riders dare to climb. In fact while we were there we only saw one other guy on a bike. Check out the this photo that Lady P took of Animal, J-Kewl and yours truly. She was pretty fierce that day and was mashing up all the climbs.
whiting ranch mtnbikeriders
Here’s one of the look out points that Lady P found. Click on the image to make it bigger.
whiting ranch with mtnbikeriders.com
Once we got to the top we were greeted with a picnic bench where we could relax and take in the scenery.
whiting ranch
Animal was riding his Airborne Goblin.
airborne goblin

I took a little video of our ride with the GoPro while it was mounted on my handle bar via Trail Rail Mount.

As tough that new trail was, it certainly was rewarding. It’s funny, I’ve ridden Whiting Ranch for years and I never even knew that part was there. I guess it pays off to go exploring once in a while.

Custom Handmade Jewelry By Ana.

Posted by RL Policar On January - 20 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

One of my dear friends Ana C. owns a small business called Handmade with Love By Ana. She makes handmade jewelry. What’s great about her business is that she takes her profits and puts it towards the charitable work that she does with Hope World Wide as part of the Community Service Brigade that travels to Guatemala.

Her most recent creation was a gift she gave Lady P. I thought it was so cool that I wanted to feature it here because I know our readers would appreciate such an item. Heck it makes for a perfect Valentine’s Gift for the lady bicyclist in your life!
handmade with love by ana bicycle necklace
Here’s a close up. Did you notice the hubs are heart shaped? Oh by the way, those can be 26er or 29er wheels :) The pendant is silver plated and the chain can be between 12″-24″
handmade with love by ana
The price for the necklace is less than 2 McRib Combos, only $12.00 plus shipping. For more information about the bicycle necklace, please reach out to Ana on her Facebook Fanpage: Facebook.com/handmadewithlovebyana

Press Release: KORE LAUNCH XX1 COMPATIBLE FREEHUBS

Posted by RL Policar On January - 18 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

Back in mid 2012 we started to hear rumors and see spy pictures of Sram’s 11 x 1 drivetrain setup! When we first saw this we thought what a great idea to simply do away with the front derailleur and achieve a very similar gear ratio set up by adding an extra large ring to the rear cassette. At this time we at KORE decided we wanted to be among the first few companies to offer our hubs with a compatible freehub to accept the new 11 speed cassette. After some initial talks we agreed a licence to offer these and started working on the freehub, we have tried very hard on this project and attention to detail is second to none so that we are 100% confident we have one of the best compatible XX1 freehubs on the market.

We will be offering our XX1 freehubs for our 2013 Durox and Torsion hubs in alloy and cro-mo versions and they will be available on XCD-SL, DUROX and MEGA complete wheelsets. The alloy Durox version weighs 11 grams less than our standard freehub which makes the Durox rear 12/142 hub a very respectable 240g.

kore 11speed

DUROX HUB SPEC
Interchangeable front and rear hubs with additional spacers and axles
QR / 15mm / 20mm front options
135-QR / 135-10 thru axle / 142-12 thru axle rear options
AL7075 one piece freehub (standard 9/10 speed and XX1 available)
5 x triple tooth pawl engagement system
50 tooth steel hub body ratchet engagement for ultra short engagement
Japanese quality stainless sealed cartridge bearings
Weights
Front -
15/100 : 176g
20/110 : 172g
Rear -
12/142, 9/10 speed : 251g
12/142, XX1 : 240g

KORE Brand Manager Ollie Thomas said – “With the cycle industry seemingly going crazy with the launch of Sram’s XX1 system and reports from Sram that initial orders were 3 times more than expected, we were stoked to be able to offer our XX1 freehubs at this early stage in the 2013 season. Our test guys who were part of the elite few to receive early sample XX1 kits have been extensively testing the freehubs on both our Durox and Torsion hubs for months now with no issues. The rest of us can’t wait to our hands on an XX1 set up when it becomes readily available at the end of January. Our hats are truly off to Sram for pushing the limits within the cycle industry and bringing everyone a new great product!”

Check out www.kore-usa.com for details of all KORE products and to find our local

Kuat Vagabond Review

Posted by Albacore On January - 18 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

Kuat Vagabond

So in August I turned my little commuter soda can into an 80 mph shopping cart. That’s a lot of beer fueled football games and rum soaked partying since then, so it is easy to forget the preview I posted.
It is aptly named the Vagabond. I quit loggging the miles this rack spent perched atop my car after 3000. I have removed it and remounted it half a dozen times since then. This do in part to its ease of installation. The Vagabond mounts to round or square crossbars via four clamps. These clamps are shaped in a way that allows them to accommodate nearly any crossbar spacing. This is a good thing since my Civic is a two door with very little rooftop real estate. I was concerned about the crossbar spacing prior to mounting the Vagabond. Kuat specifies that your crossbars be no less than 22″ apart. Whew! I just made it. The four clamps are secured via 2 castle nuts each. These help make installation a breeze but could also make theft just as easy. Said castle nuts also sit up a little high. Depending on what you are carrying in the cargo basket, these nuts may get in the way (yeah, yeah, I know, it sucks when your nuts get in the way. Especially when you sit on them.). The Vagabond relies on a standard quick release skewer to mount the bikes (not provided). I suggest you invest in a quality set like Shimano’s QR skewers to keep with the rack. It quickly becomes a PITA to fully remove your front wheel’s skewer to mount the bike. Then you’d have to remove it from the rack to reattach your wheel once at the trailhead. The Vagabond does comes with 2 burly nylon straps to secure the bikes’ rear wheels.

Kuat Vagabond

Kuat Vagabond

It has a wind fairing which does a good job of cutting the wind noise and allows you to plaster even more stickers to your car — making it look like the entrance of a Wahoo’s Fish Tacos. As with any rack gas mileage is cut slightly but not so much to be a concern. I mounted mine first in line with the slope of the roof, then a little forward as evidenced in the pictures. The in-line position produced less wind noise but having it more forward made weight distribution more balanced. Remember, I have a small car. Any 4-door sedan, SUV, or wagon would not have such an issue. Despite the small footprint I have with the Vagabond, it has always remained secure.

Obviously, the Vagabond is great at carrying bikes. But you could do that a multitude of ways. What makes this so nice is its ability to carry anything you can fit in the basket. I was able to go the beach with 2 bikes, 2 beach chairs, and a skim board all loaded in the Vagabond. Now I can leave my truck at home and still carry what I need; while also fitting my car in compact parking spaces.

Kuat Vagabond

The list of features I don’t like is short. One item short — lockability. To lock the bikes to the rack you would have to use a cable lock. To be extra secure, you would have to swap out the castle nuts for hex nuts. This change wouldn’t make the basket theft-proof, but it would require tools and time to remove, thus making it a lot harder to steal/remove. Thankfully, like all smartly profitable companies, Kuat has addressed this issue with their upgraded Vagabond X. The Vagabond X has locking mounts and integrated bike locks for a retail of $489.

The bottom line — would I spend MY money on this rack? Dunno, maybe, but I am a cheap bastard. I really like the thing. Overall it is well made and is just the right size. What really sets this apart from similar products like Yakima’s LoadWarrior are the two bike mounts. To accomplish the same task with the $279 LoadWarrior you would have to buy 2 of Yakima’s bike tray racks at another $100 – $180 each. Not only would this double the price of the setup but it would severely limit the cargo carrying capacity if the basket.

I would be more inclined to buy it if I had an SUV or a wagon. But, it does greatly increase the cargo capacity of a little car like mine so. . . maybe I am the ideal candidate for a Vagbond. To be honest, had I not been given this rack to test, it would never be on my radar. It is one of those luxuries you never knew you wanted, and once you have it, you don’t know how you’d go anywhere without it. My dad just bought a Subaru wagon and is jonesing for this rack. I’m going to mount it on his car and drive over the other half of God’s green acres. I can’t wait to borrow pop’s car again, just like 20 years ago in high school.

Pros:

Ease of installation
Ability to carry 2 bikes plus cargo
Well constructed
Ability to fit nearly any crossbar configuration

Cons:

Lack of security

MSRP $295

Kuat Vagabond

FTC Disclaimer

Serfas Hydra Optics Review

Posted by RL Policar On January - 17 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

I’ve been riding with the Serfas Hydra Sunglasses for some may call it Optics for quite some time. Below are the specs:
hydra7

Polarized Lenses
Decentered Polycarbonate Lens Technology
Polycarbonate Lenses Block 100% of harmful UVA and UVB rays
Hand Polished Frame Finish
Grilamid Frame Composite
Rubber Temple Inserts
Furnished with EVA Hard Case and Micro Fiber Bag
Price: $70.00

These glasses have seen multiple uses such as XC, Super D, DH, motorcycle riding (both dirt and road) and even just plain driving or to use at the beach. They’ve become my go to glasses and it’s because I simply love them. One thing you need to know about me, I’ve got a round face. So that means traditional glasses just don’t look all that great on me. I need them to be wide enough and tall enough to look somewhat cool on my face. I also have an obsession with eye wear. It’s true, I own over 25 pairs of sun glasses. They range from the $150 kind all the way down to the ones you’d buy at the Dollar Store.
hydra4
Where does this place the Serfas Hyrda? On my face! As many choices I have in wearing any other pairs of glasses I own, I really like the fit and optics of the Hydra. They’ve never slipped off my sweaty face when riding and when I’m fishing the Polarized lenses help me see below the surface of the water.
hydra3
If I’m using my ruler correctly, the Hydra frame is roughly 130mm wide and the lenses are 40mm tall. My head is pretty big, and if I wear any other type of glasses, it would look pretty funny on me. Since the Hyrdas are what I consider wide, they are just right for me.
I really love the way the Hydra looks. It’s sporty, yet casual look makes it great for any type of physical activity, but if you need a pair of glasses to wear with your office attire, you can always go with the Black version of the Hydra. I know this because I have both! The black Hydra is for business and the white is for fun.

The white Hydra goes with my whole ensemble.
hydra2
They protect my eyes from wind and debris. I absolutely love them!
hydra1

Ok let’s get down to a gut level here. If you’re Asian or predisposed to a round face or a big head, you may want to consider getting the Sefas Hydra, not only do they work really well, but dude, look how cool I am in the photos?! Just imagine you looking that cool, now go get the Hydra!!!

FTC Disclaimer

Speaking of drinking

Posted by RL Policar On January - 16 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

In response to the DRINKING ARTICLE, I’ve heard that chocolate milk is a fantastic post ride recovery drink.
Chocolate_Milk_by_hutchess
It also makes it cheaper than Muscle Milk or any type of Protein Shake you can buy. I figured I’d get on the bandwagon and give it a try. But when I did…PRRRRRT!

Yup you guessed it, the runs. So what’s a brother gotta do to get on the chocolate milk thing like all the cool kids? Well it turns out that Soy Chocolate Milk can be just as good for you as regular Chocolate Milk that comes from a cow. No, chocolate milk doesn’t come from chocolate cows…but wouldn’t it be great if it did?!
soy chocolate milk
Anyhow, if you’re lactose intolerant like me, try using Soy Chocolate Milk after your ride. Why? I don’t really know, I’m sure there’s nutrients in there that would help rebuild your muscles and fight muscle fatigue and all that hoopla. Other than that, it’s just a yummy drink to have.

You Are What You Drink

Posted by Albacore On January - 11 - 20132 COMMENTS

I’ve heard it said, “You are what you eat.” I call B.S. I have been eating fast food for years and I have yet to get any faster. After brewing my daily pot of coffee this morning I have come to the realization You Are What You Drink. I like my coffee black, mornings, afternoon, strong and black. My wife on the other hand has a tremendous sweet tooth. I joke that she doesn’t add coconut creamer to her coffee but rather she adds coffee to her sweetened creamer. She is much sweeter than I. I like sugar too — sugar that has been cooked down, fermented, distilled, and aged into rum. Given my bitter disposition it should be no surprise that I drink a fair about of beer; bitter IPAs most regularly. I am imbibing as I type this. My beverage stays chilled thanks to my favorite coozie (maybe 2nd fave, these are awesome). Sadly, my glorious G-men failed to make the playoffs this year. You are what you drink? Call me a loser.

MtnBikeRiders.com Team Roster for 2013

Posted by RL Policar On January - 11 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

We’re happy to announce our team roster for 2013. There’s been a few changes, but the biggest news is that our very own Lady P is back on the XC scene! Lady P will be competing as a Sport Level XC racer.
MtnBikeRiders.com Lady P
The rest of the team will consist of the following riders: Corey Pond, Art Aguilar, Jerry Hazard, Neal Bryant, Dan Burdett, Bryan Doney, Nick DiBlasi,Wes Castro and RL Policar.
2013 race team version final

My love hate relationship with Craigslist

Posted by RL Policar On January - 10 - 20132 COMMENTS

For as long as Craigstlist has been around, I’ve been buying and selling things through it. At times I think it’s better than Ebay because you don’t have to ship anything and to use the site,it’s free!

But with that comes some idiots that I’ve dealt with in the past. Just the other day I received an email from a guy who wanted to buy a new road handle bar from me. It’s listed at 50% off retail and did I mention it was new? Ya so here’s my text conversation with him. I don’t have a fancy smart phone that takes screenshots of my conversation but you’ll see that my patience was wearing thin due to him texting me too many questions. On the messages below, we’ll call him Dork and ME, me.

-Dork
$15 for the stem and handlebar?
-Me
I don’t have a stem for sale, just a bar.
-Dork
Okay no problem.
-Me
Did you still want it?
-Dork
Yeah
-Dork
For Sure
-Dork
Any bar tape?
-Me
Sorry No
-Dork
Alright
-Dork
I’ll let you know when I am OTW
-Me
Ok
-Dork
Why are you selling this btw?
-Me
I don’t need it
-Dork
Is it sturdy?
-Me
I would assume so. It’s brand new.
-Dork
Alright see you soon.
-Dork
46cm is pretty wide huh?
-Me
I ride mountain bikes, so I don’t know if these bars are wide, just right or what.
-Me (15 minutes before the time we’re supposed to meet and he’s 30 minutes away)
Will you be on your way?
-Dork
Yeah soon, Leaving from ci
-Dork
UCI
-Dork
Can you send a pic of it from the front.
-Dork
I wanna get an idea on how wide it is

-Me-I finally got fed up with him and all the questions he had and here’s what I responded with
Dude. It’s 46cm…get a ruler and look how wide that is. Seriously, its a brand new bar for $15…its not like you’re buying a car or something complicated
-Dork
NVM, Have a good night.
-Me
You wasted my time.

I probably could start a whole new website based on all of my Craigslist interactions. As frustrating some of them can be, I find it down right entertaining!

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