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PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2009 9:46 pm 
Pumpy's Bear
Pumpy's Bear
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Joined: Mon Oct 10, 2005 10:03 pm
Posts: 8148
Location: Hereford
After a local Boxing day ride and a few comments from those I was out with (i.e. I'd ride better on a modern bike) I thought there may be something in it and I'd give it a go. I can now report back......

I was loaned, for as long as I wanted, a modern steel hardtail with some Fox forks. I built it with discs, modern tyres, short stem, riser bars. I then went out on the local trails to try to get a comparison. It felt much more upright and pretty comfortable on the flat in a pootling kind of way. Downhill did give me a bit more confidence, but only a bit. Uphill was frustrating though, I just couldn't go as quickly as I was accustomed to. I gave it a few rides as getting used to a new set up can take a while. Interestingly I was taking roughly as long as on my other bikes to ride the route although overall speed wasn't the point.

But ultimately it wasn't for me and here's why:

- I am hopeless downhill. Setting a bike up differently made me feel a bit more secure but I'll never be Sam Hill.

- the new bike made riding uphill much less enjoyable for me and that's the bit I usually enjoy most.

- so I have accepted that although I can learn new skills and improve, I'm kind of happy with being the sort of rider I am and will try to play to my strengths and neutralise my weaknesses. I'm a high poster, deal with it!

- returning to a bike with a flat 150mm stem was like putting on an old pair of slippers!

Still, it was fun to try out a different bike and I really appreciated the loan. It has made me more relaxed and less uptight about my riding which I guess will make me better on the trails.

Riding on in a blissful time capsule


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2009 9:51 pm 
East Midlands AEC
East Midlands AEC
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Joined: Thu Oct 05, 2006 7:45 pm
Posts: 15067
Location: Derby, UK
well, like we say to our kids when trying new food, only for them to spit it out: "well done, at least you tried it" :lol:

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2009 10:12 pm 
retrobike rider
retrobike rider
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Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2006 10:12 pm
Posts: 3016
Location: Northumberland
May be that bike was wrong for you. Full suss may be better suited, but then there's a whole range of options/styles to wade through. You could probably find a retro bike that is supposed to be 'the bike' but it doesn't work for you. I was out with the Yeti 575 yesterday and it was absolutely brilliant around the lakes.

Each to their own eh?

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2009 10:58 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Sun Apr 06, 2008 1:51 pm
Posts: 1299
i guess it depends on what sort of riding you're doing.... for me, proper long xc rides are way better on my retro kona, a modern long forked HT simply don't cut it on the climbs but that said...
i LOVE my modern dmr trailstar, it's the best bike i've ever owned, modern, retro or whatever. this is because it's perfect for tooling about on, i can do a bit of everything, it'll go up ok, feels planted and in control on the downhills and i can easily alter the set up in a matter of 1/2 hour for jump/street...versatility is what its all about, i guess you could say compromise and it is but if i were allowed only one bike, then it would be the trailstar. i can swap forks, put gears on, ride it singlespeed with just a back brake, whatever :D

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