With the Liberal government now in power my wife would like us to move to
Canada from New Zealand. While fundamentally not opposed to the idea she wants
to leave Wellington (extensive inner city trail network, mild winter) for
Halifax (flat, cold, her family).
Yes, it is absolutely worthy of a black mark. So many bikes are great
nowadays, earning excellent to outstanding ratings, that some of the most
significant differentiators are the finer details regarding the finishing.
Ungreased and seized components, parts not properly fastened, and properly
installed cabling are aside from the manufacture of a frame the only other
thing that a turnkey bike company brings to the table. All other parts that
are strapped to a frame are supplied by someone else and as a consumer we rely
upon the bike company to have the proper quality mechanisms in place to asure
a safe and reliable build.
More so, the bearing failure you experienced could be indicative of a problem
more significant such as eccentricity or angular misalignment of the bearing
seats within the frame and could be indicative of a problem wiLe a bike
manufacturers core competencies….the actual manufacture of the frame. Given
your empirical evidence of said headset it isn't a leap of logic to consider
So should you rebuild a bike completely for a bike review? In my mind, heck
no. A complete bike that is dialed and ready to rock should be the target
deliverable for all highend bikes. It isn't a matter of should you rebuild but
a matter of should you need to. As a reader and consumer I want to know every
flaw that can be expected that exists at the design, quality, part selection,
and supply chain level and I appreciate reviews that acknowledge all problems
and provide more thoughtful analysis than how the suspension feels or the new
improved super long reach geometry of a bike….
If you are a half fast rider then you're going to want the opposite of lower
pressure. I know that there are plenty of folks that feel more comfortable
with a softer setup, but frankly when you start pushing your limits, using a
system with lower pressures does not provide consistent support. This is
somewhat analogous with suspension setup and the same BS was pushed down our
throats when tubeless tech started making its way into biking. I can't run
under 28 psi on 2 ply casing downhill tires without having those 'moments' of
squirm and tire collapse in certain cornering and leaning scenarios and I'm no
better than a midpack Cat 1 bum on a good day. It's truly amazing that the
real fast guys manage to keep their tires on their rims for an entire run.
We're all a bunch of introverted donkey's playing with special big boy toys in
the woods so if someone wants to buy wider whatevers then that's all good and
if certain 'technologies' or types of bikes allow some riders to be more
comfortable and personally faster then I think it is a great thing.
Interesting that ENVE would put a stake in the sand on this issue. Reminds me
a bit of Specialized doing the same in claiming (correctly I'll add, based on
all empirical evidence) that there really ain't no difference in speed between
26 and 650b wheels.