Howler was a second hand frame in near new condition. I bought it around 2008/9, upgraded the shock which increased travel to around 114mm and stuck a 150mm fork on (RS Domain) to create a mini short-course DH / do everything bike. Was very good for the time, and for my local woods.
Kona Howler was ahead of it's time. Of all the suss frames I've owned, that one holds fond memories.
On paper you may be right but when Voullioz and Chausson were in their prime, the sport of DH was quite different than it is today. Minnaar's career has spanned through the evolution of DH and he has proved his competitiveness throughout (including a 4th at Maribor yesterday). It is such a different sport today so for me he is currently the best dh rider of all time.
I've actually got an Ergotec bar (not on list below). Found after a lengthy Internet search for 12 deg backsweep bars with high rise. I've since tried to buy a 45mm SQ Lab in alu but they were out of stock last time I checked.
Switched to a 70mm riser (12 deg backsweep) about a year ago with inverted Apex stem slammed (5mm spacer only so the stem clears the upper headset cup). My bike has a low stack height but 50mm was my preferred bar height previously.
I remember the flat bar trend years ago, but it always seemed wrong to me on bikes designed to be jumped and thrown around. Makes more sense for xc I guess.
I was excited for this jacket until I saw the price tag. Think I'll stick with my Patagonia Techface jacket which cost less than half the price of this and is top quality.
What a lovely bike. Nice work.
0.5 psi difference in front tyre pressure between wet and dry rides though - can you really tell the difference?
Their Saint range was a real game changer. My (approx) 10 year old Saint DH crank is the oldest component on my bike. The paint is worn and bb has been changed but I'm confident that the crank Arms and spindle will still be working fine 10 years from now.
I've had this fork (Z1 coil 150mm) for a few months but only about 3 or 4 rides so far. I'm around 185lbs and the firm spring feels spot on although I'm still playing with the settings. So far ive had to turn the rebound almost all the way in (which is unusual compared with previous forks ive had) to stop it from feeling too loose.
I wondered if the Grip 2 damper would offer more refinement so may have to try this upgrade. I've heard people say they prefer the Grip 1 as it stays more supple (less to interfere with the stroke), but if anything my fork feels TOO supple once it gets past the initial 30% or so of travel.
I've had the Endura MT500 Spray II trousers for a couple of years now and wear them at every opportunity. The range of temperatures it feels comfortable in is much wider than I expected (from freezing right up to 18C or so). It has thigh zippers for cooling. I personally find the waterproof seat area invaluable and wouldn't want to be without one.
I replaced a lot my bolts with ti bolts (random weight saving exercise as I was bored), but they seem to round out more easily. After stripping a couple of rotor bolts I got scared and switched back to steel for a lot of them.
Multitool or not, it's always worth paying more for a sharp edged quality hex tool.
417mm is an odd number. I assume that's the shortest setting so could be lengthened by 15mm or so.
This bike is not dissimilar to my Pipedream moxie which has the same sliding dropouts (but 425mm - 441mm). I was running mine slammed at 425 but have recently put an extra link in the chain (ss setup) to extend to about 438ish I think. Liking the extra cornering support and stability on jumps, but it is more difficult to manual. Very tight cornering is a bit worse but not unmanageable.
Looks like my current set-up. I'm running a Renthal Apex stem inverted with an Ergotec 70mm riser bar, also cut to 770. It has a 12 deg backsweep so may be worth checking out.
Andrew, as a fellow 'over 40' I've never seen the Waltworks look as good as it does in the top pic. Looks similar to my bike but better. It's my dream bike! Maybe due to growing up riding bmx and living somewhere flat.
Haha. Your description of it is worryingly accurate. Was it you?
I was riding a well established mellow single track line (short trail on a small hill) in my local woods last week to discover a new feature. Someone has created a gap jump about half way down the trail blocking the main line with no alternative 'chicken' line. You now have to dismount and fight through a load of tree/bracken to get past and continue the line. The run in and run out are both inadequate for the gap and I couldn't see any tyre marks on it.
It was definitely built by mtb'ers, but they have effectively prevented at least 90% of people (if not more) from riding the trail!