Published on

Published in: Sports
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide


  1. 1. WORLD’S BEST BOLT-ONS...UNDER $100 3 298 C0 MOUNTAIN BIK ACTION CC BIKE O APRIL 2009 RK R’S YETI’S BIG FO YE D E SURPRISE! U UI BG YOUR TIRED BIKE CAN RIDE LIKE NEW Cannondale Specialized FROM $769 TO $7700 Attn. retailer: Please display until Apr. 9 $4.99 ISSN 0895-8467 WHAT IS THE BEST DEAL FOR YOU?
  2. 2. f
  4. 4. FSR
  5. 5.
  6. 6. THIS MONTH You know you want to upgrade your fork. We show you what is out there and give you tips on how to get the most out of them. Page 60. 40 56 Photo by John Ker Photo by John Ker BIKE TESTS MBA SPECIAL SECTION FEATURES 40 The Specialized S-Works 60 MBA’s 2009 Forktionary 90 Riders Who Inspire Stumpjumper FSR Carbon Your guide for speaking in forked Brian Bushway, leading the blind. The Ferrari F430 of trailbikes. tongue 92 The Nine Most 56 Salsa El Kaboing 64 TURES Tricks And Fork Tips, Underrated Components Secrets Spice of Life ...and one great bike get their Get all the performance you paid long-awaited recognition. 80 The Yeti 303 R-DH for. Ride the Rail 116 Who The Heck Is Aaron 68 2009 Fork Buyer’s Guide Gwinn? 108 The Cannondale F5 Front-end upgrades. Meet the USA’s top World Cup Cannondale’s best-selling threat. mountain bike. TECHNICAL TRAINING & FITNESS 46 Bring New Life To That 96 The Lazy Man’s Guide To Old Bike Gaining Speed When upgrading makes a lot of Become a better bike handler $ense. right now. 76 World’s Best Bolt-Ons Five simple, cheap products that COMPETITION will make you faster. 124 Focus On Winning Elite gravity athletes specialize in 86 Inside The Pros’ Bikes one discipline. Melissa Buhl’s KHS world dominator. DEPARTMENTS Fine tune: There 102 How To Fix A Flat Tire 12 Happy Trails are plenty of tricks You think you already know, Twenty years of innovation. when mounting don’t cha? your bike’s stem. 14 Mac Attack The Garage Files 112 The Garage Files Left out in the cold. show you the ups Stem research. and downs. Page 114. 6
  7. 7. contents Photo by Craig Grant Photo by John Ker 108 117 16 Hard Tales 36 Inside Line Wild saddles, demo rides and Are custom-made bikes Goldfinger worth it? VOLUME 24, NUMBER 4 19 Trailgrams 98 How To Subscribe APRIL 2009 The Santa Cruz debate Entertaining, educational, continues. sometimes controversial—and ON THE COVER cheap, too. Three great bikes for three very 24 Trail Mix different reasons. The Specialized 136 Quick Releases Life found on Mars. S-Works Stumpjumper FSR Heads, you win. Carbon, the Cannondale F5, and 30 Thrash Tests the Yeti 303 R-DH. All shot through 138 Down The Trail A lifesaving bag and more. the lens of John “Wish I got a cash An insane stunt that looked bonus for every cover shot” Ker. Group ride: Let awesome. your young’un come along for the ride and get a work- MOUNTAIN BIKE ACTION Magazine (ISSN 0895-8467 out at the Canada GST 12500#9266RT: CPC INT’L. PUB MAIL 40024492) APRIL 2009, volume #24, issue #4, is published monthly by Daisy/Hi-Torque Publishing Company, Inc., with editorial offices at 25233 Anza Dr., Valencia, CA 91355. same Subscriptions $19.98 for 12 issues (one year). Canada add $12 additional postage for one year, $24 for two years. time. Foreign add $15 additional postage for one year, $30 for two years. Foreign subscriptions are shipped by surface mail and may take up to 15 weeks to receive. Copyright ©2009 by Daisy/Hi-Torque Publishing Company, Inc. All rights Page 30. reserved. Nothing in this magazine may be reprinted in whole or in part, by any means, without the express permis- sion of the publisher. Contributors: Photographs should be submitted in digital form on CD or DVD. Images should be 4 megapixels or higher. High-quality, low-compression JPEG images are preferred. Please limit submissions to no more than 20 photos at one time. Transparencies and prints will no longer be accepted for consideration; such images should be scanned and submitted as high-resolution digital files. Captions should accompany all submissions. Make sure the photographer’s name, address, phone number and e-mail address are clearly labeled on each CD or DVD. Submissions will not be returned. Written articles should be submitted on CD (unless other arrangements have been made with the editors), saved as “text” files, and accompanied by a printed version. Written submissions, both on paper and CD, will not be returned. The publisher does not assume responsibility for unsolicited material. PERIODI- CALS: Postage paid at Santa Clarita, CA 91383, and at additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Mountain Bike Action Magazine, P.O. Box 958, Valencia, CA 91380-9058. Printed in U.S.A. For Canadian returns mail to: Bleuchip International, P.O. Box 25542 London, ON N6C 6B2. WARNING: Much of the action depicted in this magazine is potentially danger- ous. Virtually all of the riders seen in our photos are experienced experts or pro- fessionals. Do not attempt to duplicate any stunts that are beyond your own capabilities. Always use discretion and wear the appropriate safety gear. 7 April 2009 / MOUNTAIN BIKE ACTION
  9. 9. ©2008 Giant Bicycle Inc. All rights reserved. Pictured: 2009 Anthem X0. Putting the “X” in “XC,” the all-new Giant Anthem X cranks up the travel while shedding the weight. World Cup-proven geometry, four plush inches of Maestro travel and the lightest aluminum full- suspender Giant has ever produced. Available now at your local authorized Giant retailer.
  10. 10.
  11. 11.
  12. 12. HAPPY TRAILS By Richard J. Cunningham fork with adjustable preload. A reliable Index shifting was still around the cor- was assembling an afford- I suspension fork in the mid ’80s—one ner, and trigger shifting? Well, that was able hardtail when I had that actually worked? Come on! Four somewhere in outer space. Mountain one of those “ah-ha!” years later, when the first generation of bikers of that period shifted gears man- suspension forks did arrive, they moments that made me realize ually with friction thumb levers. gushed like pedal-powered oil wells. Sealed components were premium exactly how far mountain bikes It boggles the mind that the lowest priced items in the early days. The have progressed. A dear friend common denomenator in Haro's Haro’s no-name bottom bracket, name had (reluctantly) returned a mountain bike lineup—a $500 hard- hubs and headset had sealed cartridge tail—reflects such an astounding bearings. Cartridge-bearing hubs and vintage steel-framed mountain amount of innovation and (dare I say bottom brackets were only available in bike that I had built in the mid it?) performance. Of course, the value mountain bike widths from Phil Wood 1980s. It was outfitted with the of the Escape S is mirrored by other back then, and Chris King made the bike brands, and this further under- only cartridge-bearing headset. Low- best components from its era scores the fact that mountain bike friction, Teflon-lined cable housings— and probably would have makers, through hard work and imagi- the stuff that comes on every bicycle retailed for a then-exorbitant nation, have placed a busload of tech- made today—were patented, cutting- nology under the saddles of bicycles sum of $1800. The modern edge technology. The topper for any- that almost anyone can afford. one who squealed through mud or mountain bike that I had just The last components to come out of moisture, however, would be the pulled from the box was a Haro the Haro box were pedals—one-sided, Haro’s “Bengal” disc brakes. The Escape S. It retails for $490-- toe-clip style pedals—the items which Taiwan knockoff of Hayes’ mechanical first inspired me to glance over to the disc brakes would most certainly have which in 1985 dollars was prob- vintage Mantis across the room, been depicted in action on point-of- ably $150. To put it mildly, the because it too was equipped with toe- purchase videos near bike-shop cash low-level Haro represented a clip pedals (and straps). It seemed registers throughout the world. quite comical to me that the only com- Mountain bikers who flocked to bike technological leap. Its most ponents on the Haro left unaltered shops to squeeze the mighty Bengal insignificant features would after 20 years of innovation were the brake levers would be blown away by have left both the press and the ones I despised the most. I love my the radical lines of the Haro’s tapered, racing community of the 1980s rectangular-tube aluminum frame. openmouthed. “Awestruck’ might be a more appropri- ate word. The Haro had an eight-speed cassette, while the vintage Mantis had six cogs—but the term “cassette” was not introduced until 1989. Period mountain bikes had screw-on freewheels that tightened with each power stroke until the hub and freewheel were pressure-welded together. They required a Herculean effort to remove—and quite often were destroyed in the process. The novelty of an eight-speed hub alone would have knocked the socks off of mountain bike enthusiasts in the eighties, Shimano SPD pedals. I remem- when the largest cog a bered fussing with cages and straps Most would have never seen a welded derailleur could shift numbered 28 while negotiating technical trails, and I aluminum bicycle frame of any kind in teeth. They would have killed for the realized that I could live without person—and manipulated tubes simply Escape's 34-tooth low gear and the almost every modern mountain bike didn’t exist. But the wonder of all won- SRAM 3.0 long-cage rear derailleur. So invention, but I never wanted to flip a ders would be the Escape’s unprece- imagine their shock at SRAM's SX.4 toe-clip pedal again. Of course, in 1985, dented innovation: the SR Suntour 3.9- under-the-handlebar trigger shifting. nobody would have noticed that. J inch-travel, spring-action suspension 12
  13. 13.
  14. 14. THE MAC ATTACK Cold Weather Riding mitt over the gloves. iving on the northern edge L Dang it, I’ve got to snap of Southern California my helmet. The mitts doesn’t present a lot of op- come off. A Buff head gasket gets slipped over portunities for true cold-weather my head so it covers my riding. So when a cold snap blows ears. I should have put through the Heritage Valley, like that on before the jer- it did recently, I’m stoked. But I’m sey, but it is going to be not just stoked, I’m prepared. July before I leave for this ride, so I compro- I wanted to share what may have mise and tuck it in best been the last cold day of the season and I can. The helmet goes I had made a number of calls to invite on, glasses in place, friends to join me for this ride. No luck. mitts back on. I slip on The sun was starting to climb into the the CamelBak and the gray sky, so I knew I couldn’t waste straps are digging into any more time trying to find a partner. my shoulders. Have to I wanted to be on the trail while it was let them out to accom- still crunchy. I started to suited up. modate all those extra It takes 30 seconds to get ready for layers. I’m ready to most rides, but not when it is frigid go. Total dress time: outside. You have to plan carefully. The 27 minutes! operative word is layering. I start slip- I don’t know if it ping into a thermal top and then ther- is the anticipation of mal tights. I slide a set of regular riding the adventure ahead tights with over-the-shoulder holders on or over-hydration, top of the thermals and a baggy short but I take two steps over those. towards the garage Next come the socks. Then I realize and nature calls. I’ve blown it. The long socks should Actually, it yells. I have gone between the thermals and have to go through tights for a better system seal. The the drill of stripping shorts and tights come off and I pull on layers away, but I am getting good at do- the long socks. Then I put all the other The trailhead is just up the road. I ing each step in its proper order. I only stuff back on. A recycled plastic bag roll down the driveway, make a left and waste another ten minutes. goes over each sock, and I put another am surprised by a sheet of ice. The front I open the garage door. Flat tire! I pair of socks on to hold the bags in wheel shoots to the right like somebody keep my spirits high. It could be a slow place. My toes are toasty, even if there attached one end of a rope to the right leak. I get to pumping and it is hard to is the faint smell of peanut butter and slider and the other end to the bumper hear through the Buff. I pull the Buff jelly (the plastic bags were used for last of a garbage truck. I go down so fast that down to uncover one ear. The tube is week’s lunch). I don’t even get my hands out to soften leaking faster than a New Orleans levee. I blow the dust off the awesome the blow. Luckily, all that layering takes I’m not giving up. Gaerne Polar cycling shoes in the back the brunt of the impact. I have to rock I strip halfway down, change the tube, of my closet. The shoes, that look more back and forth a few times to build pump up the tire and slip the wheel like boots, are five years old and still ap- enough momentum to get to my feet. back into the bike. My feet are sweating pear to be brand new. That’s because I The front brake lever is snapped and the by now and one of my two chamois is only get to wear them about three times stem is pointing at a 45-degree angle. soaked. I follow the drill to get all my a year. Once I get these guys laced up I roll the bike back into the garage and gloves, layers, helmet, Buff and glasses and zipped, I slide a set of booties over I walk inside my warm house. I strip back on. I’m finally ready for my nine them. I don’t like numb toes. down to the thermals and turn on the o’clock ride. It is 10:22. I look at the clock. It has been twenty computer. The Weather Channel pre- The phone rings! I don’t take any- minutes since I started dressing. I try dicts a high of 67 degrees by tomorrow thing off as I press the receiver against to focus. A long-sleeve jersey. A jacket and the TV listing shows an episode of my Buff-covered ear. “Speak up,” I shell. A vest. It will be snowing, so I put Law And Order is just starting. I’ll have yell into the phone. It is Sanders. He’s another shell over all those layers. to try that cold weather ride next year. ฀ returning my call about going for a ride Uuuuugh, did it again. My gloves! I and just wants me to know he thinks wanted them under the jersey. Off with I’m nuts. I thank him for calling back Don’t be left out in the cold. Write to the shells, vest and jersey. On with the and wasting another two minutes of me at gloves (the thin ones). Jersey, shell, vest my ride. I head back into the garage and and shell two go back on. I slide another grab my bike. 14
  15. 15. w w w knucklebox c o m wf c
  16. 16. HARD TALES Gear Troy Lee Speaks Italian Troy Lee Designs is best known for its riding gear, casual wear, hel- mets and custom helmet painting. Hard to believe that Troy Lee and his zany crew of designers Look fast (clockwise from bot- and painters find time to take on tom left): The $170 Vertebrae Yutaak, the $99 Shiver Paint Can, the $210 more projects, but they do. SLR T1 25 Years of Troy Lee Designs, Recently, the TLD group got the $210 Flight Eyeballs and the $188 paid the ultimate compliment SLR XP Spider Web. when the 112-year-old Italian saddle company, Selle Italia, asked for some graphic input. Italian companies are renowned for their design expertise, so tapping the Corona, California, compa- ny for design input was flattering to say the least. Compliments aside, Troy and the gang dipped into their bag of tricks and came up with saddles that look so cool, you’ll want to pedal out of the saddle for the first month after you get one. The limited-edition TLD Selle Italia saddles are available from your local bike shop. You can get more informa- tion from Selle Italia’s importer, ProNet, at (800) 279-3793. Where are the rails?: The monocoque car- Hard tail: Not part of the TLD Selle Italia sad- bon CX Zero saddle has integrated rails. dle line but equally eye-catching is this three- Our advice is to invest in a great torque ounce, all-carbon CX Zero saddle. Only the wrench if you are willing to plunk down most hard-core weight weenie will be attract- half a grand for this saddle. You don’t ed to this expensive (around $500) saddle want to crimp these rails. that needs to be carefully cared for. Cross Training Ivan Basso Shreds Snow What do top roadies do to get in shape for the road season? They ride mountain Photo by Roberto Bettini bikes! Elite professional road racer Ivan Basso was spotted riding a carbon fiber Cannondale Moto at the Team Liquigas training camp held in Italy’s Dolomite mountain range. The focus of Ivan’s train- ing is to knock off Lance at the Giro d’Italia this coming May. 16
  17. 17. Demo Wanna Ride A Pivot? Pivot Cycles is on the road again with their demo fleet of Mach 4s, Mach 5s, Mach 429s and Firebirds. This is your chance to throw a leg over these impressive bikes with- out committing to a purchase. (Warning; after your ride it may be tough not to commit.) The fleet will appear at the Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, California, before heading to Colorado and New Mexico in May. They haven’t figured out where the highway will lead them after May, so you can check their website or call (480) 467-2920 to track the demo fleet’s progress Fact Pivot Demo Tour May 14-21, Ride the Rockies, 28,724 April 16-19, Sea Otter Classic, Rocky Mountains, Colorado Monterey, California May 16, Sports Garage, May 2, Wheatridge Cyclery, Boulder, Colorado Wheatridge, Colorado rts, May 23, Santa Fe Mountain Spo May 3, Golden Bike Shop, Mountain bikes in use Santa Fe, New Mexico Golden, Colorado by police departments May 30, Fat Tire Cycles, May 9, Old Town Bikes, Albuquerque, New Mexico across America. Colorado Springs, Colorado Truck Stop You Too Can Own A Former Downhill Champ! In 2001, former MBA photo rider Todd LeDuc won the NORBA National Series downhill championship. LeDuc left mountain bike racing to join his father Curt and brother Kyle (also a former MBA photo rider) to race trophy trucks. The LeDuc name rings in the off-road truck world like the name Andretti in open- wheel racing. Thanks to Todd’s truck racing success, Winning w you can now buy a replica 2001 Azo ays: Todd LeDuc in decal kit of his Rock Star ride for Stick up: The Todd LeDuc graphic kit for nic advert isement. a your RC truck. your R/C truck. 17 April 2009 / MOUNTAIN BIKE ACTION
  18. 18. HARD TALES Winners GT Wants To Make You A Star The GT Golden Bike Series is like a reality TV show made just for cross- country racers. And unlike TV’s secretly scripted “reality” shows, there are no fixes or behind-the-scenes manipulations going on at the GT Golden Bike Series. It works like this: GT has chosen seven races that make up their Golden Bike Series. The amateur cross-country racer (over 18 years old) to turn the fastest time becomes the GT Golden Bike Winner. This rider doesn’t have to be racing a GT bike to be eligible, but there’s a catch. The Golden Bike winner must Moral support: The Golden Bike winner gets defend the bike’s ownership by racing it at the next event in the series or for- an unfair advantage at the next race—the feit the prize package worth more than $10,000 to the second-place finisher. encouragement of The GT Gold Diggers. “The only way to get the Golden Bike is to crush the competition,” explained Jenni Cathcart, Director of Marketing for GT Bicycles. “There’s no silver or bronze in this competition. It is all about the gold.” The Golden Bike Series GT doesn’t expect the Golden Bike winner to fund the bike’s defense alone. That’s why GT will cover an all-expense-paid trip for two to the next April 19,Sea Otter Classic, race in the Golden Bike Series, bestow the use of a commemorative GT Monterey, California Golden Bike, supply a $250 Sugoi gift certificate and top it off with a swag May 2, GHORBA Big Ring bag of cycling gear. Challenge, Coldspring, Texas It gets better. A professional bike mechanic, and a personal cheerleading May 17, Spring Thaw squad known as The Gold Diggers, will support the Golden Bike winner. Of Mountain Bike Festival, course, if another rider throws down the fastest time at the next event, all Ashland, Oregon these rewards are taken from the last event’s winner and transferred to the June 7, Massanutten HOO-HA!, new winner. Harrisonburg, Virginia Since professional riders do not qualify for the Golden Bike Series, we pre- July 4, Firecracker 50, dict a few of last year’s back-marker pros will not renew their pro license so Breckenridge, Colorado they can go after the Golden Bike. After all, the Golden Bike winner will get August 9, Ore to Shore, treated way better than most pro winners. J Marquette, Michigan September 13, Landmine Classic, Hingham, Massachusetts Golden opportunity: The series leader gets to choose a GT Zaskar or GT Marathon (shown here). Both will feature a golden monocoque carbon- fiber frame and Shimano XTR components. 18
  19. 19. TRAILGRAMS THANKS FROM TONY Thanks again for the story on my Forward Motion Foundation (MBA, December 2008). We have already received interest in helping out as well as donations to the Re-cyclery. One of the contacts was from a guy who works with the Metro Transit System here in San MBA, Diego. He is helping us set up the routes so folks without cars can get January, 2009 to our events. This is really cool, as we are working with many folks who do not have driver’s licenses. Tony DiLorenzo Forward Motion Foundation BE AN INSPIRATION After reading about Tony DiLorenzo in the January “Riders Who Inspire,” I thought of a friend who is worthy of THE LAST PROFLEX LETTER I bought my ProFlex 956 in 1996. I being featured in a future story. She still ride it. Not much of the original would never think about promoting bike remains, but it is still essentially a herself, so what is the best way for me short-travel, stiff-backed, dual-suspen- to submit her for consideration? sion, cross-country bike—absolutely Bill Hess perfect for the type of riding I do. Chicago, Illinois SLOW YOUR SPIN Curiosity has led me to test a few MBA encourages riders to spin at 80 Many riders who deserve to be featured modern bikes, but I just don't seem to rpm (“New Years Riding Resolution”, in “Riders Who Inspire” would never “gel” with them. Although they float January 2008). This works for smooth recommend themselves, and that’s why along the trails, they seem too heavy, trails, but when the going gets rough friends like you are so important. Drop us bouncy and detached compared to the (extended rock gardens, and extended an email (, ProFlex, which tells me absolutely rooty sections), I find I get better and it will speed things up if you type everything that’s going on underneath results in a bigger gear. Use more mus- “Riders Who Inspire” in the subject line. its skinny wheels. cle and, voila, you make it through the Tell us about the person who deserves a Mark Lovatt rough stuff. I understand the dynamics little recognition and how we can contact Newtown, Wales of the pedal stroke, but the advice of them. As you may already be aware, we pedaling at high rpm does not always have a broad definition of who a rider have its place. Push the gear and learn who inspires is. It can be someone who has MORE COLD TIPS the burn! done things to benefit the entire mountain I ride all winter in Salt Lake City, Tom “Lefty” Lowrie biking community, a rider who helped Utah, and when the trails are too Dalton, Pennsylvania you out of a tough situation, or a rider snowy, I climb the steep roads in the who is fighting against great odds. They’re your knees, Lefty. foothills near the state capital to keep my muscles ready for slickrock in the spring. The trick is to layer with wick- ing materials and wear a big CamelBak pack. I begin the ride with an amount of clothing that makes me feel a bit cool to start the climb and usually includes a polypro underlayer, long- sleeve jersey, wind vest, windproof jacket and appropriate leg covering. As I ride up, I stop briefly to shed a layer as needed before heat builds and caus- es profuse sweating. At the top of the climb, I start pulling layers out of my pack and putting them back on (fleece jacket, windproof jacket, head band with ear muffs, a fleece-lined face pro- tector, thick gloves, knee/shin guards to break the wind). Then I bomb down to the bottom secure in my clothing capsule. What a blast, and what a way to turn heads! Brooks Carter Salt Lake City, Utah 19 April 2009 / MOUNTAIN BIKE ACTION
  20. 20. TRAILGRAMS CRAIG FAN Thanks for the profile on Adam Craig (“America’s Best Mountain Biker,” MBA, January 2009). I have been a fan of Adam based on his results, and now I’m more of a fan based on his attitude. If there were more well-rounded riders like Adam racing today, I believe cross-country racing in the United States would be a lot more interesting. Chris Lewis Boise, Idaho RE-TREAD SLIDE GUIDE MBA recommends putting a Kenda I tried Paul Thomasberg’s cable Small Block Eight tire on the rear of tricks (“Garage Files,” January the bike to lessen weight and improve 2009) on my Santa Cruz Blur LT momentum. Nowhere do I see a dis- that uses Shimano XT components claimer stating not to follow this and could not believe the results. advice if you live in the Northeast. The The rear derailleur shifting is Small Block Eight tire might do what noticeably crisper with less pressure you say, but at a cost of lost time due needed at the shifter. The added to lack of traction with all the mud we benefit of keeping dirt out of the have here. housings is just a bonus to the mod- Peter Inserra ification. Please keep these kinds of Oriskany, New York tips coming. MBA Disclaimer: Riders who ride Joe McAdams on frozen lakes, in deep snow, mud bogs San Diego, California or quicksand shouldn’t use a Kenda Small Block Eight tire on the rear either. THE SANTA CRUZ DEBATE FUNNY AND INFORMATIVE GOES ON I realize it is only your January I have to side with Santa Cruz. They issue, but the photo of Dan are not attacking consumers with a Gaudenzi using a glove and tire quot;loophole,” but rather sticking to their tube to dress his head wound has guns. Why should they release a new my vote for the funniest photo of bike when nothing has changed? Should the year. It was funny and at the same they offer a new color next season, hop time informative. I wonder if I would the price, and tell riders it is the all-new have been so resourceful if I found Blur LT? They have, in fact, differentiat- myself in the same situation as Dan? ed their models—not by year, but by Eric Rhodes characteristics, design, and technology: Calgary, Alberta, Canada J Blur, then Blur LT and Blur XC (these were different bikes and different from or the Blur); and now the new BLT2, or Write us at mbaction@h Trailgrams, 25233 Blur LT2 with VP2. A shop that does hard copy us at MBA 91355. Include not know how to explain this to cus- Anza Drive, Valencia, Ca. you live. tomers isn't committed to the lines they the town and state where month: Don’t fill up carry, and that consumer should find a Trailgrams tip of the to the top. Measure shop they can rely on. your hydration bladder ’ll need for the Josh Dennis the amount of water you t. to carry the extra weigh Salt Lake City, Utah ride. No need 20
  21. 21. g
  22. 22.
  23. 23. BATTLE PROVEN. The HollowGram SI Crankset. The lightest, stiffest crankset on the planet. Standard on the Cannondale Factory Racing Team Scalpel. The good fight.
  24. 24. TRAIL MIX A FOXY LADY Riding during my vacation to the Alps. Elayna Caldwell Fox Racing Shox IDAHO EPIC In mid November people in our area are thinking about skiing and snowboarding on some of the best snow on earth, at Jackson Hole, Wyoming’s Grand Teton Village. But we were not done riding. We needed to go on one last ride. It was the first time my wife and I had rid- den on snow and ice. Your bike tires make a dif- ferent kind of sound going over snow. The bikes handle differently, and even though you know the six-mile trail, it has changed. The bumps, climbs, drops and rock gardens all make the trail different. As we continued down the trail, the snow turned to mud and we got dirty in a very good way. It was an epic ride that I would recommend to anyone. Cody Saxton Sheryl Saxton Danny Kelly Jackson Hole, Wyoming 24
  25. 25. f c
  26. 26. TRAIL MIX LIFE FOUND ON MARS This is me riding the Fin on Thunder Mountain Trail near Bryce Canyon, Utah. Shannon Lynch Wheat Ridge, Colorado HAPPY BIRTHDAY Celebrating my 54th birth- day at Plattekill, Roxbury, New York. If you ride, you understand. Tony Suppa Stamford, Connecticut TAKE A PICTURE This is my wife and I riding just north of Quebec City, Canada, in the Jacques Cartier National Park. Biking is time we take to spend together, enjoy life and have a blast. As for the most part we are running with too many things to do and too little time to do them. On this ride, we managed to figure out how to run the timer on the camera to get a pic- ture of both of us to remind us how much fun we have biking together. Michelle LeBlanc and Rheal Jaillet Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada WATCH YOUR STEP Mark Dimond (left) and me sitting on the edge of a cliff next to the Slick Rock Trail in Moab. The black line on the middle right is a road, and you can see a car down there. Probably wasn’t the smartest thing to do, but we got some pretty cool pictures with our cell phones! Bryson Chamberlain Oak City, Utah 26
  27. 27. RIDE BELIEVE With 150mm (6”) of fully active travel, the 2009 Compulsion utilizes our award-winning patented Equilink™ technology to achieve true pedaling e ciency. No longer must you “pepper” your pedal stroke to o set rear-end travel. Experience a plush, fully-active suspension operation that is completely isolated from drive train influence. Aggressive, agile and lightweight, the Compulsion’s trail design is capable of tackling all-day, all-mountain riding, no matter the conditions. One ride will make you a believer. Felt’s 2009 Compulsion family of bikes includes the One (shown), Two and Three. RIDE…Fast. Hard. Forever.
  28. 28. TRAIL MIX FAMILY RIDE This day out with Dad comes to you from Phoenix, Arizona. Got to love A REAL CAMEL BACK Phoenix in the winter months, and having two boys, Dylan and Luke, who love My wife Jill and I on a 35-mile to mountain bike with their Dad! epic ride in Judea Desert, Israel. The Vince Kaderabek. photo was taken in a dry riverbed Phoenix, Arizona called “gmalim” that means camels in Hebrew. Dry riverbeds in the Judea Desert are the only places TAKING IT ALL IN where you’ll find vegetation for food Cris, Dave, and Bill taking and shade, so a lot of local Bedouins time to check out the view bring their camels to this place for of Castle Peak from the Hole rest and grazing. in the Ground Trail at Samuel Bachar Donner Summit near Lake Richmond, Virginia Tahoe, California. The place has awesome singletrack, slickrock and views. You would never know you are so close to Interstate 80. Cris McReynolds La Honda, California LITTLE JUMPER Cameron Ory at the Snowmass NEW FRIENDS Colorado State Championships. At 11 Friends I made on years old he finished second in the a bike trip through mountaincross and smoked the field in the Congo. the downhill. Junior racing and develop- Tracy Price ment is the future of the sport. Phoenix, Arizona Mo Ory Denver, Colorado J FACE IT We want your face in MBA. Here’s how: 1) Image file size needs to be 600 KB or larger. 2) Tell us what is going on in your photo (include names). 3) Include your name and the city and state where you live. 4) E-mail it to Trail Mix ( Trail Mix rider of the month: Ryan Trebon. 28
  29. 29. .
  30. 30. THRASH TESTS Thrash test rating: ##### Perfection ####$ Delivers above average value and performance ###$$ Recommended for intended application IBERT SAFE-T-SEAT ###$$ ##$$$ Shows potential but has drawbacks #$$$$ Save your hard-earned bucks Giving Junior a front row seat on your next ride Many riders have a youngster who is too young to pedal along on a ride, so iBert Inc. has come up with the safe-T- seat, a $94.95 child seat that attaches to the steerer tube of your mountain bike. Tech features: The Safe-T-Seat is designed for children age four and under. The minimum age is 12 months, because the child needs to be able to sit up and have the strength to hold The stinger the weight of a helmet. The maximum height of the child that can use the Safe-T-Seat is 42 inches. Kids much taller than that will be uncomfortable. The recommended max weight is 38 pounds. You can reach iBert at (801) 440-4024. After the thrashing: The Safe-T-Seat slides onto a patented stinger mounting system. The stinger clamps to the bike’s steerer tube below the bike’s handlebar stem and above the headset (so you need at least 3/4 inch of steerer tube from the headset to the stem). We mounted the Safe-T-Seat on our Managing Editor Sean McCoy’s tandem mountain bike, which now let him include his youngest child on rides. The installation of the stinger clamp was a simple task and the directions were easy to follow. The Safe-T-Seat slides on and off the stinger clamp easily. We found tolerance between the Safe-T- Seat and stinger to be loose, and this resulted in a bit of play. The loose fit makes the seat slightly sway from side to side, which takes some time to get used to. The drill for getting your child in the Safe-T-Seat works like this: straddle the bike, lift and place your little critter in the Safe-T-Seat. Slip the harness buckle over his or her head, then close the pivot lap bar and you are ready to go. On the trail, we found that the Safe-T-Seat was positioned perfectly to allow the rider total access to the handlebar for normal steering, and pedaling was not hin- dered at all. The weight distribution of the child is also far better for bike handling than a seat that positions the child behind the saddle. A few things to remember: your little riding partner is doing a great job of shelter- ing you from the wind, so remember to dress your child warmly. Also, pick your trail wisely. Leave the technical loops and fast sections for rides you’ll do solo. CYCRAGUARD TWINPACK ##### Deflect your tires’ spray Commutes or dirt road exploration on rainy days become a drag fast with a constant spray of water and mud coming off the tires and into your face. This Cycraguard Twinpack contains universal front and rear fenders that are designed for quick installation and removal. Cycra suggests a retail price of $44.99. Tech features: Cycra includes all of the hardware necessary to mount front and rear fenders to almost any frame and seatpost. Both the 15-inch-long front and 20-inch-rear fender measure four inches wide. They are injection molded from an unbreakable composite plastic. Two quick-hook rubber bands attach the front fender beneath the bike frame’s downtube. A bracket with a quick- release clamp holds the rear fender off the seatpost. The fenders are available in black, white, or titanium colors. Cycra Bike can be contacted at (800) 770-2259. After the thrashing: The complete Cycra fender assembly weighs 11 ounces. The fenders mount to the bike in an instant. Spacers are included that will adapt the front fender to bikes that run the gear cables beneath the down tube. Tuneable position and angle features make it easy to adjust the rear fender to the lines of the bike. The fenders do an amazing job of eliminating the splash that tires throw up while riding in the wet. Besides keeping mud from splashing up on your glasses, the Cycra fenders keep the rider from getting soaked by tire spray. You stay drier, warmer and more comfortable in inclement conditions. This is one of the best mods that a rider can make to his bike for wet-weather riding. 30
  31. 31.
  32. 32. THRASH TESTS Thrash test rating: ##### Perfection ####$ Delivers above average value and performance ###$$ Recommended for intended application ##$$$ Shows potential but has drawbacks ADVENTURE MEDICAL KITS #$$$$ Save your hard-earned bucks EMERGENCY BIVVY ###$$ Something right for the times when things go wrong There may come a time when a mechanical failure, poor map-reading skills or lousy planning leaves you stranded on a trail overnight. If that ever happens, you better hope you were smart enough to pack a $16 Adventure Medical Kit Emergency Bivvy in your hydration pack. Tech features: The Adventure Medical Kits Emergency Bivvy, when stowed in its pouch, is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand and weighs 3.5 ounces. Once unfolded, it mea- sures eight feet long by three feet wide. The ultra-thin Heatsheet material used to con- struct the bevvy has a burnt orange outer color and a reflective metallic interior. This vacuum-metalized polyethylene material is claimed to reflect up to 90 percent of your radiated body heat back to you. The mate- rial, while thin, is stretchable so it resists rips. You can reach Adventure Medical Kits at (800) 324-3517. After the thrashing: Remove wet layers of clothing, leave on anything that is reasonably dry, unfold the bivvy and crawl inside. It feels too thin to be effec- tive, but you will sense your body heat being reflected almost immediately. The bivvy has zero padding, so you’ll need to find a soft place on leaves or grass before calling it a night. We spent a fitful night under the stars in the bivvy as temperatures dipped into the 40’s. The bivvy reflected enough heat to allow us to sleep for around five hours, and no moisture came through the bag. While not the most comfortable night we’ve ever spent in the great outdoors, it fold it up tight enough to fit it back in its pouch. Amazing. felt like a five-star hotel compared to sleeping on the ground Hopefully you will never need to use the Emergency Bivvy, in cycling gear. but since it only weighs ounces, fits into a small pocket of any In addition to warmth, the bivvy sack makes a great wind- hydration pack and costs a measly $16, we can’t think of an breaker too. One more benefit of this bivvy: turning it inside out argument not to carry one. It could end up being a real life- would make a large reflective target for anyone looking for you saver. from the sky or neighboring mountaintop. We were even able to MUC-OFF BIKE CLEANER ###$$ chemicals work immediately to lift dirt stains and surface grease, which after two minutes easily wash away during a Keeps that bike looking new second rinse. Muc-Off’s protective coating reduces water spotting and gives the surfaces of the components and chas- You want to keep your pride and joy looking as clean as the sis a smooth look. It also contains non-oily ingredients, day you bought it. Yes, that’s impossible, but there are products which means that it is safe on discs and pads. Your bike is that can help you keep it looking, if not new, at least pre- only going to get dirty again, but Muc-Off will make it look sentable. Muc-Off is a non-aerosol spray-on bike wash in a bot- sweet until then. tle. A one-quart, hand pump-bottle of Muc-Off retails for $11.99. Tech features: Muc-Off touts nano technology. What that means is that it contains cleaning and protective components that at the very finest molecular level have been custom restructured to elevate effectiveness. Whatever. That’s their pitch, not ours. Muc-Off is claimed to contain no harsh ingre- dients, is safe to use on all surfaces, and is friendly to the environment. Give Muc-Off a call at (562) 945-9944. After the thrashing: Muc-Off does not magically blast caked mud off your stays, downtube or bottom bracket area. It also does not degunk an over-lubricated drivetrain. It is a detailing spray. Get the offending stuff loosened up using a sponge and brush before rinsing with water (no power sprayers!). Now spray Muc-Off on the bike. Its nano-tech 32 m
  33. 33. 2008 N° Beijing MEDAL 1 GOLD OLYMPIC FULCRUM Julien Absalon (Orbea TeaM ) & RED CARBON D stribute Distributed i U.S.A. by: Qualit Bicycle, Security Bicycle, Sinc air Imports BTI Distriibuted in U.S.A. by: Quallity Biicyclle,, Security Bicycle,, Sinclair Imports,, BTI st SA Qua ity cy e ecur t B cycle incl mport TI t cycle nclai p t WWW.FULCRUMWHEELS.COM
  34. 34. THRASH TESTS Thrash test rating: ##### Perfection ####$ Delivers above average value and performance ###$$ Recommended for intended application ##$$$ Shows potential but has drawbacks LOUIS GARNEAU DURANGO SHORT #$$$$ Save your hard-earned bucks #$$$$ A short made from earthy materials that comes up short The $109 Durango shorts from Louis Garneau take a holistic approach to cycling apparel. Can you feel the difference? Tech features: The Durango short is made from Bamtex, an eco-friendly fabric made with bamboo. Bamtex is abrasion-resistant, moisture-wicking, and has anti- odor qualities. The Durango comes with a mesh inner short featuring Garneau’s new HD chamois. There are LT-Stretch inserts on the hips, at the back and at the crotch area. This fabric has four-way-stretch and is designed to ensure breathability and fit in motion. You can reach Louis Garneau at (800) 448-1984. After the thrashing: The Durango short fits snugly at the waist and hangs low, crossing the leg just below the kneecap. The Bamtex material is breathable, yet it stood up to scraping along trail shrubbery without ripping or snagging. The pockets directly above the knee do not seem to serve a purpose other than being a convenient place to briefly drop your car keys while you’re unloading your bike at the trailhead. If you store anything in those pockets while you ride, say a multi-tool, energy bar or car keys, it will flop from side-to-side as you pedal. There are tension straps with buckles on the front of the short at the waistline. We never needed these straps to achieve a secure fit; however, they interfere with the waist belt of a hydration pack, digging the buckles into your mid-section. After a couple rides in the Durango shorts, we cut the buckles off the front of the shorts for a more comfortable fit. The stretch-like material in the crotch area is comfortable before or after a ride, but on more than one occa- sion this material snagged on the saddle when we stood up to pedal or dis- mount. The Durango shorts have a lot of features that may look good on paper, but on the trail it becomes clear that they’re better suited for lounging around the house. easy to select the wrench needed and the wrench into the wheel, and the SERFAS ST-SL SLIMLINE to fold the unneeded ones back into four-sided socket design gets a good CHROME MINI TOOL the body. All of the tools have suffi- bite on the spoke nipple. The ST-SL ####$ cient extension and can reach into the Slimline actually has 12 tools and gives tightest spots. you more than claimed. It doesn’t come You don’t have to break the On the opposite end of the body is with useless features like bottle open- bank for a reliable multi-tool the chain breaker, which is the most ers. It only offers the tools needed to useful one that we have seen on a A new entry into the multi-tool service a modern mountain bike, multi-tool. A two-inch-long handle on game, the Serfas Slimline offers 11 including brake lever reach. the driver supplies more than enough tools in one and carries a suggested The only drawback is the lack of an torque to extract a chain pin. retail of $20. eight-millimeter Allen key, but the price Additionally, swinging the handle out Tech features: The Slimline mea- is right. J to the side provides effective torque for sures three inches by two inches, is the Allens and 5/16 of an inch thick and weighs four screwdrivers. ounces. It includes a chain tool, Finally, included Phillips screwdriver, flat-head screw- on the end of the driver, T25 Torx driver, a 3.23-mil- foldout handle is limeter and 3.45-millimeter combo the combo spoke spoke wrench, and 2-, 2.5-, 3-, 4-, 5- wrench. The two and 6-millimeter Allen keys. The wrench sizes are Slimline is produced by Serfas, which the same as the can be reached at (800) 424-0047. most common After the thrashing: The Slimline black and red is a simple, effective and easy-to-use shop spoke mini multi-tool that is a steal at its $20 wrench sizes and price. It has no detachable parts (so will service both you won’t lose them) and is bullet- cross-country proof. The Slimline is much easier to and downhill use than a pocket knife-style multi- rims. The handle tool, which likes to tangle its individ- extension makes ual wrenches. With the Slimline, the it easy to reach tools fold out together on one end; it is 34
  35. 35. f
  36. 36. INSIDE LINE A SAGGING QUESTION Many of your tests recommend setting suspension sag. I understand how to measure and set sag, but can you explain why suspension needs sag? Doesn’t setting sag (let’s say 20 percent sag) rob you of 20 percent of your travel?” Howard Kinunen Orlando, Florida Jose Gonzelez, who worked on motocross suspension at Team Green and designed mountain bike suspension components for Manitou before establishing Trek Bicycle’s West Coast test facility, explains why sag is so important to your mountain bike. “Suspension sag is critical for proper performance for numer- ous reasons: 1. Suspension sag is a key factor in maintaining traction. Due to sag, the suspension is constantly in traction mode, driving the tire into the ground and maintaining contact as the surface undulates. This is especially the case when weight transfer is taken into account under braking, in off-camber turns, climbing and descending. 2. One of the biggest myths about suspension is that sag robs you of travel. This is not true, especially in off-road situations. There are as many bumps that are cavities in the surface as there are protruding from the surface. Suspension sag allows the suspension to “track” the bump’s shape and respond to bumps and holes that are below the surface. Without suspension sag, CUSTOM RIDE your bike would not be able to “track” the bump and it would drop into the bump—just like what happens when you ride a hardtail. Sag is what gives that “floating” feeling when travel- Is there a big advantage to buying a custom-made ing at speed over uneven terrain. frame over an off-the-rack production frame? 3. Sag also serves to allow the suspension to achieve a “set- James Kehoe tling” point for chassis stability. The sag point is basically a sta- Brattleboro, Vermont bilizing point that reflects the proper spring force required to Sherwood Gibson, a prolific fabricator and the man carry a given load (rider behind Ventana Bicycles (a company that offers both weight plus bike weight). custom-made and production bikes) explains: But all it takes is a small “There are advantages to both. With production frames you get the opportunity to participate in lower pricing and market-driven design trends that are supported by their sheer volume of sales. For example, a big bike company can be both trend-setting, with swoopy-tubed frame designs, and Do you know the way to sag, Jose?: also offer affordable pricing because they sell a whole lot of It doesn’t take up them. But in order to meet volume requirements, production travel and it makes frames are generally offered in five or fewer sizes per model, your bike ride bet- and geometry is determined by the manufacturer with very ter. Trek’s Jose few customization options available, if any. So, if you are Gonzalez talks about the impor- looking for value, your body proportions fit stock sizing tance of setting jumps, and the stock geometry is to your liking for your rid- suspension sag. ing style, then a production frame is your best bet. On the other hand, a custom-made frame has the advan- tage for all those riders who lie outside of the “normal” pro- duction sizing and geometry envelope. All people are not built in equal sizing increments. Really tall or short folks with long or short legs and long or short arms, riders with physical ailments restricting their movement or body posi- tioning, and riders who just want something different are all candidates who should consider getting a custom bike. Ventana offers three levels of customization ranging from a simple lengthening of a top tube to a full-custom build with tube diameters, wall thicknesses, and frame geometry tailored to the rider’s intended use and needs. To top things off, we also offer custom powder coat colors and additional bolt-on upgrades to further customize your ride. So the big advantage to going custom is that you can get a bike built specifically to fit you, to your exact specifications, and with a more individualized look.” 36