Burt Reynolds…Retires

It is with a heavy heart to announce that our very own Burt Reynolds is retiring. He’s gone from a regular Redline D600 to a rigid single speed, then to a formidable XC riding machine with X9 parts and all that jazz.

On his latest rendition he donned a whole new look with blue plastidip. But unfortunately, this is goodbye for Burt Reynolds. It’s been a great 11 months since all the changes. I’ve had hundreds of miles of fun with Burt and I will miss him. This is how he looked this morning. Still spry, but a bit tired. Thanks for the fun times Burt!
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Update: Wolf Tooth Components

I wanted to give you an update on the Wolf Tooth Components chain ring. As you can see I went with a 32t chain ring in hopes that this will be enough for climbing and for speed.
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As far as climbing goes, it’s a bit tougher since I don’t have a granny gear to go on. I haven’t had to walk up a hill and I’m expecting to get more accustomed to it and get stronger at the same time. But one of my favorite things so far with the Wolf Tooth is that it hasn’t dropped yet. Yes it’s absolutely true. I’ve taken it through some technical terrain where it was pretty bumpy all the way down. Just to mix things up, I’d pedal and shift at the same time to see if I can get the chain to jump off the ring. To my surprise, it hasn’t fallen off. I’ve had close to 80 miles on this chain ring and in all those miles, it continues to stay put. I’ll post a final review after I put in a few hundred more miles on it.

Changing up your bike’s color with Plasti-Dip

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I’m sure you’ve all heard of Plasti-Dip. It’s that rubber coating that you can dip your tools into so you’ll get a rubberized surface. If you have pair of pliers that have a rubber handle, that stuff is like Plasti-Dip.

However, what I did was use the spray can version of it. Since I’ve been watching Youtube Videos on how people use Plasti-Dip (dip) on various car, wheel, motorcycle and anything that people want dipped. My first experience with it was my motorcycle.

I wanted to change up the way it looks, and what better way to do that than the color. I went with the matte black. I bought 2 cans from Home Depot for $5.97 each.Below are my side covers and tank.
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Here’s how they turned out.
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Knowing that it was easy to use and the dip was readily available, I decided to try it on Burt Reynolds. Stripped down the bike to it’s frame. Gave it a good washing by using soapy water and some degreaser.

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As I started working, I noticed that there was a texture starting to develop with the dip. Not satisfied with it, I decided to rip off the 4 coats that I just did and start over. Look, it really does just peel off!
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By the way, I didn’t bother removing the headset cups and bottom bracket cups. I made sure to spray directly on them because the dip easily peels right off once you’re done.

After 5 coats, that’s 1.5 cans of Dip, I got this.

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Remember the bottom bracket cups? Well all I had to do was cut around them with a sharp knife and peel. I did the same for the headset.
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Here’s the finished product. Not bad eh. I’m not entirely convinced if I like the way this color covers. You can still see the REDLINE logo underneath. Not that I don’t like REDLINE, love those guys, but the black dip covered up everything on my motorcycle.
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Here’s a closer look of the frame.
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My Chris King headset nice and clean, no dip residue.

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I’ll be riding this weekend to see how well it holds up. By the way this stuff gets EVERYWHERE! But the good thing is, its easy to clean up.
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One thing to keep in mind when working with dip. Do it where there is very little wind. Also, I learned that you have to hit the spray nozzle before you spray the frame. If you point the nozzle to the frame, then hit it, you’ll get globs. So remember, hit nozzle, spray, then pass over the frame. You can find basic colors of Plasti-Dip at your local Home Depot for $5.97. I happen to get lucky with the Blue Blaze color, they normally don’t stock that. Plasti-Dip offers a variety of colors and you can order them online, but be prepared to pay as much as $10 a can plus shipping.

26″ Tube in a 29er wheel

If your 29er gets a flat and all you have a is a 26″ tube go ahead and use it! Check this out.

26″ tube in a 29er tire.

The trick is to hold down one side of your wheel while you work in the tire onto the rim. Make sure the tube is deflated while you’re doing this, it makes it easier to mount. After you have it mounted, you’re ready to air it up and get back on the trail. I own a handful of 26er and 29er bikes, and all I buy are 26″ tubes because they’ll work for both.

Voila! 26″ tube in the 29er wheel.

 

It took you long enough…

Those words were said to me the other day as I had a conversation with who I consider to be one of the most highly informed 29er guys I’ve ever met in this whole universe. That person is none other than Jeremy Yang. For as long as I’ve known Jeremy, he’s been riding 29ers and never saw the appeal of 26er bikes. In fact he and I, along with The Moe would go back and forth (in a fun and loving way) about why one is better than the other. But in all honesty, I never really saw a benefit to 29ers until about 6 months ago. That’s when I first got a hold of the Airborne Goblin 29er. Just read the review and you’ll learn why I love it so much.

We fast forward to last Friday where Jeremy mentioned something to me that he’s noticed I’ve been riding 29ers more lately. I had to agree with him and even went on explaining why I suddenly love them. Then he said it in a joking, yet in the tone of “I told you so.” “It took you long enough!”

This photo was taken the day after I spoke with Jeremy.
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Yep, he was right, it did take me long enough. But I have to tell you, I’m not quite like (and there’s nothing wrong with it) Jeremy, I still own and love to ride my 26er bikes. In fact Jeremy is so hardcore/sold out(which is cool) for 29ers that I think the only smaller wheeled bikes he has in his stable would be his children’s bikes. Other than that, he doesn’t personally own a 26er, he thinks they have cooties. 🙂

So there you have you have it, I’m riding 29ers for XC purposes, but if I really want to get down and dirty, I’ll bust out my 26er AM bikes. I am rather curious to see how an AM and DH 29er would feel.

Airborne Goblin Update

We’ve had the Airborne Goblin for a few weeks now and I wanted to provide our handsome as well as the ugly readers an update on how this bike is holding up. Mind you, our formal review will be up soon, and this update is to give you taste on what’s been going on with the bike.

So far we’re convinced that if you want to mainly ride XC, which entails staying on ground, no jumping and going fast, that the Airborne Goblin is a great choice. It’s fast, reliable, fun and did I mention how fast it was?
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With the Goblin, yours truly has been able to do some remarkable XC riding. You see, I have this reputation of being the designated sweeper of the ride since I’m pretty darn slow. I usually will be the first to recommend rest breaks and short cuts. But it wasn’t until I got on the Goblin that things started to change. One day it dawned on me that when I’m on the Goblin, I ride way faster!
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During one of my lunch time rides, I tried doing the whole trail without stopping. To my surprise I was considerably faster, by about 15 minutes. Then I started trying to beat Lady P’s best time of 1hour 5mins on the Fullerton Loop. I did. Then I wanted to go after Khoala’s best time of 59mins. I did. Since I didn’t have GPS or a fancy app that timed me, both Lady P and Khoala didn’t believe me at all. They said something about having proof. So last Friday, Khoala equipped me with his Garmin GPS and we all rode together. Between Lady P and Khoala, they couldn’t keep up! To my surprise I yielded a 56min lap, that’s crazy fast for me! In all the years I’ve been riding the Fullerton Loop, I’ve never broken the 1 hour mark. But just a few rides with the Airborne Goblin, I’ve been able to smash my previous times!
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Some still don’t believe that I can ride that fast now. I don’t believe it myself, in fact I really think that it’s the bike that makes me ride faster!

Product Review: WTB Freedom Cruz 29er tires

A few months ago, I turned one of my mountain bikes into a commuter.

Yeah, I know. It’s kinda embarrassing. But I had a bike available, and WTB sent over their Freedom Cruz 29er tires for review, so I felt obligated.

For the full review, head on over to BikeCommuters.com – but in short, these did the job and more, and I actually got to appreciate an old bike in a different context (and fixed a couple of nagging issues along the way, since I had lots of time to appreciate the problems!). If you’ve got a bike gathering dust in your basement, garage, or storage area, the Freedom Cruz tires are worth the investment!

The New Airborne Goblin

Just recently we took delivery of the brand spankin’ new Airborne Goblin 29er.
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Right out of the box.
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So what makes this Goblin different from the previous model? Here’s what they have to say:

FRAME: Tapered HT with increased rear wheel mud clearance, increased standover clearance on the 16″ frame-size.

Tapered Reba RL fork with increased 100mm travel

Larger 180mm rotor up front for increased stopping power and fade resistance

New 38/24 gearing on the all new SRAM X7 crankset that offers a better gear range for climbing paired to an 11-36 cassette.

Geax AKA 2.2 tires that roll fast on hardpack and offer outstanding grip on loose and rocky terrain

New Selle San Marco Ponza Power Saddle

Finally, the most important thing: we managed to do this all for a price of $1199. That’s only $50 more than the past Goblin in spite of rising industry costs!

First time out.
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If you need more info, here’s the specs:

Frame 6061 Hydroformed Aluminum Hardtail 29″
Fork RockShox Reba RL 29 Dual Air w/Lock-Out, tapered steer, 100mm
Headset Ahead Sealed Cartridge 1 1/8″ to 1.5″ tapered
Brake Levers Avid Elixir 7
Brakes Avid Elixir 7 Hydraulic Disc
Rotors Avid 180mm front, 160mm rear
Shifters SRAM X-7 2×10
F Derailleur SRAM X-7 2×10
R Derailleur SRAM X-7 2×10 Mid-Cage
Cassette SRAM PG-1050 11-36T 10-Speed
Chain SRAM Powerchain 1051
Crank SRAM X-7 2×10, 38/24 rings
Bottom Bracket SRAM XR GXP Sealed BB
Pedals NONE
Rims WTB SpeedDisc XC Alloy Double-Walled with eyelets
Hubs KT HiFlange Sealed Bearing 32H
Spokes Black 14g Stainless
Tires GEAX AKA 2.2″
Handlebar AIRBORNE Alloy Flat, 640mm width
Stem AIRBORNE Alloy +/- 7 Degree Rise, size specific
Saddle Selle San Marco Ponza Power
Seat Post AIRBORNE Alloy 31.6mm Diameter, 350mm Length
Extras Owner’s Manual, Clear Coat, H20 Bottle Mounts

The Goblin’s handling is superb! I was impressed on how nimble the bike is.
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It has a 24/36t granny gear which makes climbing easy, even for out of shape people like me!
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I’ve shortened the stem to a 60mm, this is more of a personal preference since I have short arms and all.
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We’ll be testing out the Airborne Goblin out. In fact we’re doing something a bit different, this will be a panel review that will consist of 3 different riders testing it. So stick around!
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Orange you glad I didn’t say banana?

If you may have guessed it, yes the theme to today’s article is ORANGE. Why? Because Orange rocks and its not a common color so it’s even cooler because not too many people like it. Oh and check this out, this is my Orange Tuxedo Jersey. Yep, I know you’re jealous.
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This weekend I had the privileged in riding the Redline D600 on a longer ride at Whiting Ranch in SoCal.
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I was fortunate enough to be joined by my favorite person in the world, Lady P.
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Whiting has a nasty climb called Mustard and I have to tell you, it sucks! At a certain point there was a hiker in which he and I were chit chatting on the way up. He was walking backwards as I was laboring with each pedal stroke. Kinda made me wonder if I should have just dismounted and joined him.
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Truth be told, getting used to the the 29er took some time. I wasn’t used to the bigger wheels and eventually I learned the characteristics of the bike in which I started to enjoy myself a bit more. A couple of changes I’d make to the Redline D600 would be out of personal preference, and those would be the cock pit (hehe I said cock…hehe). Since I have short arms, I’d go with a 40-50mm stem coupled with wider bars. Oh and I’d also wrap the chain stay with an old tube, velcro or a chain stay protector to keep the chain slap sound down.
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But for the rest of my observations about the bike, you’ll have to wait for the review in a few weeks!