Mountain Bike Shenanigans

Back on the Road
May 27th, 2017

Summer 2017

Back on the road bike for the first time in 2017. Feels weird to be on something so svelte and with twitchy handling and narrow bars. I’d like to say it was fast as… but I had a terrible week of punctures, the highlight of which was a 5 mile walk to work in brand new SPD SL cleats. Those Mavic tyres have been terrible, time to go back to Michelins.

Creaky
May 19th, 2017

New bike and insane death creaking from the frame after 700km. Time to get to the root of the issue.

Repairs and upgrades

Ended up changing the bottom bracket and headset to some choice upgrades from UK masters Hope Technology. Then serviced the XT Trail pedals and fitted rubber grommets on the cables.

Repairs and upgrades

Still creaking.

Then stripped, cleaned, greased and reassembled the pivot bearings.

Repairs and upgrades

Still creaking.

Finally stripped off the shock to find the bushes had been dry fitted. Greased and reassembled and creak gone. Expensive fix, but silent running and some smooth bearings to replace some graunchy old ones. Bottom headset race was particularly bad.

Repairs and upgrades

All done and just enjoying the rumble of chubby rubber on dry trails…

Repairs and upgrades

Strava App on the Apple Watch: Driving Me Nuts
May 15th, 2017

So today I logged with Strava my growing frsutration with the Apple Watch App. It is driving me nuts. I own a 1st generation watch which has been fine until relatively recently, but now has issues!

1) Stopping a ride recording
At first I thought that this was tha auto-pause function – pausing or ending a ride then not restrating it. I could correlate where a ride recording ended with a point where I had to get off and portage the bike. So I changed the setting to turn off auto pause, but this seems to have turned itself back on!

I’ve even taken to coming out of the Strava App once a ride has started by going back to the main display (clock). How ever, once riding if you flick your wrist to look at the watch it is back in Strava !

2) Hung App
Today I did a 2.30hr ride and the App crahsed after about 2.15hr. When I got back to the car the App screen on the Watch was just balck, no display. When I got my phone out and looked at Strava the ride hadn’t been logged. So back to the watch and now it is working again but had paused itself again.

3) Slow performance
From opening the App to trying to go to start a ride is SLOW. Like 60-90 seconds slow. Because it’s slow and lags, I think that it’s possible I’ve accidently turned the auto pause function back on in the same way I inadvertently select km vs milies for distance units.

4) No lock function
I can live with the slow performance, but there has to be a way of stopping the app ending the ride prematurely. Can some sort of lock function be introduced to stop inadvertent pausing and a real turn off of the auto-pause (I’d prefer to set this on the phone for the Watch App so that this is not a watch based option).

Gone Chubby
March 31st, 2017

So after riding with Al Leigh and then fat biking in the snow with Jamie Carr, I decided that I needed to try the bigger wheel size and plus size tyres out. After some looking at options from Cotic and Orange and thinking really hard about what I wanted, getting some steer off Cheri Mills and doing lots of reading I tracked down a Scott Genius 720 Plus at Start Cycles up in Newcastle. A few mods to the drive train (XT chainset and cassette) and the controls (SDG saddle, Easton Haven bars, stem and grips) it’s how I wanted it. Time to get riding.

Scott Genius 720 Plus

Scott Genius 720 Plus

Scott Genius 720 Plus

The Not So Local Riding
March 10th, 2017

The nearest trail centre to home is Llandegla. Thing is I’ve ridden more in the Forest of Dean in the last 12 months than North Wales. Go figure. Back there again today, it was warm and muddy, but the sun was out and I’m glad I took a detour on the way home.

UCISA17 Riding

IMBA: Long Live Long Rides