Every time Shimano comes out with a shoe for flats I get really excited. Their shoes fit my feet like a glove, no other shoe is as comfortable for me. BUT, so far their flat shoes have been garbage. Their clip in shoes to me are the best out there. I really hope at some point they figure out flats. The strange thing to me is what I like about their clip in pedals is they have that forgiveness part figured out. The fact that they get that wrong on flats is frustrating.
He heckled until I found it and threw it at him.
The saw blade helps with really high downed trees, I loved when people would say "that isn't possible!" then I would smash the ring into the tree give it a quick ratchet and hop off the other side. Sad thing is it has been years since I encountered a trail that left downed trees as obstacles, it is such a rewarding thing to get over a tree across a trail.
Best bash guard I ever had was shaped like a dull saw blade. It would slide across things, but if you pedaled it would dig into a log and get you over it. Worst one I ever had was a Truvative one that came OEM on a bike, it was too thin and I still remember bending it and my chainring on a ride. Ended up taking it off and throwing it like a frisbee into the woods. Then spent 5-10 minutes searching for it because my buddy refused to let me leave it in the woods.
A couple things came to mind:
1. I have a Race Face stem that is either a 50 or 70 with 20-30 mm of rise. It doesn't work anymore because bars got bigger, but I can not throw it away.
2. I carry a tube patch kit box that I bought 15 years ago at Merv's Bike Shop in rural PA. The whole shop was nothing but rare vintage parts that an old dude collected over the years. I think I spent 2 hours just looking at stuff in there. Bought a patch kit and some oddball part that I don't remember. That patch kit box will stay with me forever, just because it reminds me of an awesome day and biking trip.
Part of the problem is "flow trails" have become so popular that many mountain bikers simply do not know how to navigate trails without berms and rollers. I understand the broader appeal and enjoy a flow trail as much as the next person, but at some point technical trails become harder and harder to find and convincing people to add features becomes difficult.
I always thought the SRAM vs Shimano thing was interesting. Having ridden both:
SRAM very beginner friendly and great if you do light / progressive braking.
Shimano great if you are an abrupt braker, but not beginner friendly.
I race cars and the fastest way is to brake once late and hard. The problem is this is also the riskiest way to brake. Add to this the "wandering" bite point and Shimano becomes a very scary option. I prefer Shimano, but completely understand why others hate them. I find mine wander ride to ride, but stay consistent through a ride so the first part of the ride I am adapting to where it bites then I am good to go. Riding SRAM I always want more power earlier in the throw.
The only issue I have when riding my hardtail is I tend to be rough on rear wheels. This winter I plan to add some kind of protection to the rear wheel to try and mitigate this. On rolly terrain there is nothing like pumping backsides on a hardtail.
I would also agree with the others about a longer rearend. I have an old Nimble 9 and it is great in tight stuff, but gets nervous when the speeds go us. A longer rear end would help this and make the bike more balanced. BUT then it would stop being a wheelie machine, which is one of the things I like most about it.
If my kids see this they will get so excited about taking those nice Allen's and putting them god knows where. I have almost resorted to chaining all my tools to the right place on the wall.
You left out roost every hiker you see, even if they are in the parking lot. Screw those non bikers ruining our trails :)
The issue is you would buy the Hopes then want the Shimano. I have tried almost every option out there and come back to Shimano every time. Nobody feels like Shimano. Others have "better" modulation or power, but nothing I have ridden feels the way I want my brakes to feel. These will be like everything else give it 6 months and retailers will have it at a 20% discount.
At my house we have 2 PNWs and they are exactly 14.7643 times smoother than the 2 Reverbs we have. Amazingly easy to setup, their service is insanely good. We will be down to 1 Reverb in the near future when I swap for one of these when my stupid plunger needs bleed again.
35mm isn't as pervasive because it is an inferior product. It is stiffer, which for 99.9999% of riders is worse not better. For bars with little to no rise or sweep they are brutal on your hands. I rode the OEM Race Face bar on my Hightower for a year and my wrists couldn't do it a second year. Switched to a Renthal and it is miles better, but still not as comfortable as a smaller diameter bar. If I wasn't so cheap I would swap the bar and stem to 31.8, but for now I just ride the 35.
Perfectly written article. The only group you missed, they may not be in the PB comment section, are the "but using their words shows that we value them." I am sure the marketing people at Yeti had this in mind when they started the whole tribe thing. When I heard what Yeti was doing the only thought I had was, they should take any profits from their tribe campaigns and donate it to native causes.
It has always been cars for me too. 3 years ago I moved from Ohio to Montana, before moving I sold my track rat Miata to fund a Hightower. A few friends have bought new bikes this year and when I look there is nothing I would prefer to my bike right now. If mine broke I would get an aluminum Hightower.
Car projects are a great past time. I'm currently working on an 85 Fiero. Bought for $1,000 blew the engine and will replace it with a K20 from an Acura. The goal is a very reliable car to take on drives and hit some tracks along the way. I learned my lesson with the Miata, always keep the car comfortable enough to drive for a few hours or you will stop driving the fun car. I think the same applies to bikes, make sure your still challenged or you will get bored. My Hightower is still limited by my abilities so I enjoy trying to get more out of it.
Why does SLX exist? Is there a need for more than:
XTR - top spec for racers and people who burn money, replace every year.
XT - XTR performance with added weight and lower price, replace every 1.5 years.
Deore - 90% of XTR / XT performance with more weight, lower price, and life expectancy of Yoda.
If Shiftmano stopped making the other options how much cheaper could the remaining ones be?