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reini-wagner's comments

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Early Rider Belter 16 Trail - Reviewed - June 3, 2019, 1:34 p.m.

Hi Andrew,

thanks for the tips! We ended up using a handlebar basket, which turned out to be very handy. Yes, I know that feeling - I'm also usually getting to play the role of the mule :)

Btw we upgraded to 20" proper last week, this time we opted for an Islabike Beinn 20 Large. Also very lightweight, also very British...and one of the few producers offering a 1:1 gearing ratio in the first gear (32x32). That was actually the tipping point for me. Isn't it crazy that the bikes for adults get OEM'd with something like 32 F 50 R, while the groms have to deal with 36 F 28R ?

Cheers, Reini

Early Rider Belter 16 Trail - Reviewed - May 21, 2019, 10:32 p.m.

Hi Andrew!

I was very much looking forward to this review, thanks a lot! It confirms our experience with the Belter (we have the urban version, the trail version was not yet available when we bought ours 3 years back). I also swapped the pedals right away for a nylon pair with more grip, as the urban was shipped with slippery alu pedals without any pins. 

In the second year I swapped the handlebar to a high riser from woom, which boosted the confidence of the little lady rider, and added alomst another year to the time the bike was used. Now it's waiting for the little brother to grow up. 

Other than the changes mentioned, it was flawless. The belt drive is every bit as amazing as you describe it, and the good brakes and low weight are the most important features and justify the price. Resale value in Austria is about 70-80%, based on the prices I see in the used market. 

One thing to note: I think it is not easy to mount fenders and a rack, but it should be feasible. We had no urgent need, so i didn't put much thought into that. 

Yours looks absolutely amazing, I love the colorful and high quality chromag parts.

The plain silver frame is nice as it accepts any kind of stickers ;) 

Cheers, Reini

2019 Santa Cruz Carbon Chameleon - REVIEWED - May 9, 2019, 12:57 p.m.


thanks so much for the detailed answer - almost as thorough as your excellent review above :D

Very cool, now I only need to figure out if my fork has enough steerer left, and if so I will go down that route as well with the Honzo Ti. I might even order a second headset for the Smuggler.

On another note, I saw your insta post regarding the Belter. What is your and your little mechanic's opinion on that one so far?

Cheers, Reini

2019 Santa Cruz Carbon Chameleon - REVIEWED - May 8, 2019, 1:09 p.m.

Hi Andrew,

> I just pressed a Works Angleset into one yesterday for a buddy

that's just amazing , as we recently had a discussion about exactly this topic over at the other thread where you were reviewing the works angleset.

How did it go? Did you experience any issues with the insertion depth of the upper and lower cups? Do you happen to know which frame size your buddy rides, and how long the fork's steerer tube is? Which fork is he using, at which travel?

Thanks a lot for the great review, and thanks in advance for your replies.

All the best, Reini

Siblings - April 19, 2019, 11:53 p.m.

Absolutely hilarious! Thanks for posting this.

We Are One Composites - 6 New Rims plus Bar and Stem - April 16, 2019, 12:17 p.m.

Ha, I still have a golden roox torque bar with that sleeve (to shim it from 22.2 to 25.4) on my kona Explosif. Love that bar... Back in the day it was outrageously wide at 735mm...and it weighs almost a pound.

Works Components Angleset - April 3, 2019, 9:50 p.m.


Thanks, yes I forgot to react on that, very good point and thanks for emphasizing it again. I definitely will check this out beforehand. I currently have a hope headset installed, I'll find out how much deeper the insertion will be with the works. 


Works Components Angleset - April 3, 2019, 12:45 p.m.

Hey Andrew,

thanks for the reply, that is super encouraging. Great to hear that you have hands-on experience with that topic, and that you are very confident that this will work.

From the website, works components does offer a -2° headset for the Ti's straight 44mm steerer tube.

Oh man and I thought I was finally cured of upgraditis....

Works Components Angleset - April 2, 2019, 2:02 p.m.

Andrew, thanks for the very inspiring article (as always). I can only chime in to what you and others above have posted - this really seems to be a great way (the best) to modernize the current fleet.

I'm considering a 2° headset for my Honzo Ti, to balance out the 150mm fork I'm running. I'm a bit worried about installing it multiple times until it sits properly...wrecking the headtube on that Ti frame is not something that I would take lightly.

Early Rider Belter 16 Trail - March 6, 2019, 2:34 a.m.

Yes, that's a good advantage as well.

Here are some Pics of the frozen edition in the current setup with the BMX style handlebars.

I also bought a seatpost/saddle combo with a longer post (because she's already outgrown the stock one) , but that one is "uncomfortable because it does not have any rivets" lol

Early Rider Belter 16 Trail - March 5, 2019, 1:24 p.m.

I just found this by chance, looks interesting and seems to be good value for money:;product=304542;menu=1000,2,109;pgc%5B17942%5D%5B17970%5D=1;page=2

also available in blue and green colorways...

Early Rider Belter 16 Trail - March 5, 2019, 9:04 a.m.

Hi Andrew!

in the almost two years that we've used the Belter now, I've never had to adjust the tension of the belt, the dropouts are still where they were when I unboxed the bike. Hence the belt is still the original one as well.

A friend of mine had his in use for one year more, and he had to re-tighten the dropout bolts once because they came loose. I'm not aware that the belt on his bike had lengthened.

I'm very convinced by that belt system. As you mentioned above, it is super clean, and ideal for transporting the bike in the trunk. And the kiddies' hands remain cleaner as well.

We also had to make ours a bit more appealing - we created a "Frozen" edition :D

Early Rider Belter 16 Trail - March 4, 2019, 2 p.m.

Good point with the plus tires offering similar suspension to cheap suspension products.

I agree that rigid is good and for most applications sufficient for kids, especially given the fact that a suspension fork is always much heavier than a rigid one. Considering that even the Belter, one of if the most lightweight 16" bikes out there, weighs probably at least 25% of the rider's weight, that really makes a difference.

Imagine you'd have to ride a bike that weighs 25% of your weight (without an engine)...

Early Rider Belter 16 Trail - March 4, 2019, 1:04 p.m.

Hi Andrew,

great that you're working on another interesting topic. My 5.5 year old is on an urban belter since 2 years now. Needless to say, we're very happy with it, all the quality bits they used make for a really top notch bike. The low weight, good brakes and the belt drive were the main reasons for my choice. As the little rascal has grown quickly, I've swapped the handlebar for ape hangers...

The only gripe I had echos yours: The urban edition was shipped with even worse pedals than the trail version, I immediately swapped them for composite ones with more grip. 

For the next iteration, I've scored a used Kona Makena as an entry level mtb, which will be used at the grand parents' place, and we will probably opt for a Woom 4 for the city live (Woom are a local producer close to home).

Looking forward to reading your review - also of the other models!

Stoked to see your apprentice mechanic working her new ride!

3 Fresh Products For Fall - Nov. 24, 2018, 1:41 p.m.

Wow, that is a seriously impressive list! Cudos!

With regards to Explosifs, I have a 26" orange steel 2011 (which never appeared on Kona's website, but is identical to the black 2010 one) currently on duty as a single speed 4 season commuter running hope pro 2 hubs with wtb kom i23s and maxxis treadlites tubeless - this one also serves as trailer pulley and babyseatcarrier. I rode it as single speed and geared, rigid and sprung mountainbike as well in earlier years. Each setup was great. I totally get your view on rigid single speeding!

I picked up a mid-90s Explosif frame and p2 fork, which are not yet fully built up. The frame was cracked at the chainstay yoke, but a good friend of mine patch-welded it up nicely.

Finally I still own my first foray into kona cromoly - the blue 2003 scab. currently it serves as a truing stand, but i previously ran it with a 125-165 marzo 55 and managed to squeeze a 27.2 dropper post into the 27.0 seattube. That thing looked and rode like a tank.

Regarding the Ti Honzo: yes I was really lucky to get my hands on a used frame last year, for a killer deal. I had bought a new Smuggler frame only weeks before, but I could not pass that one up. Madness!

How's the Honzo with 29 x 2.6"? I recently bought a 29x2.6 minion/rekon combo, which came off of an oem setup, and will be mounted next season. Which fork are you running that can handle 29x3 up front?

I guess with the WC angleset, this combo really makes a huge difference!?

Thanks for sharing your thoughts, really appreciate that!

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