Mountain Bike Shenanigans

Mag Archive vs STW
May 28th, 2008

On my list of things to do for a long time has been integrating the Mag Archive more neatly into the Singletrackworld website. As the guys have been discussing a redesign for about the last 4 years it’s never been a very high priority, so for a long time it’s had a different look and feel which has always been a bit of a compromise.

The new Singletrack website looks great, so last night I spend a few hours putting together a new template for the site that integrates into the navigation and look and feel. It took another hour or so it iron out a few niggles, but I’m pretty happy with the end result. Take a look.

Singletrack Mag Archive

Tottington Turnaround
May 26th, 2008

The weather’s not exactly been summery recently. In fact the ominous grey clouds and recent high winds have been more reminiscent of autumn. It’s hard to believe that it’s almost June. I decided today to start exploring in some other directions out of Manchester. After half an hour pouring over Google Maps looking for inspiration and memorising locations, I headed off towards Salford Uni. Up and over the Cliff, past the Manchester United training ground, before dropping down and picking up the Irwell Valley Way.

From here National Cycle Route 6 heads north. I followed it up through Radcliffe and into Bury, before heading up towards Ramsbottom. I turned off and then investigated the route to Tottington. A friend of mine, Hugh Bearn, is the parish vicar and after tracking down his church, it was under darkening skies that I decided that it was time to head home. Fortunately as most of the route is either canal towpath or disused railway line, it was fairly sheltered from the wind.

Riding back into the urban areas of first Salford and then Manchester was a different matter. Hideous headwinds in seemingly all directions. Quite tired after the ride and my left knee is twinging a bit. It started when I was riding a while ago, but I haven’t been to work out what is causing it. After a couple of rides I think that the CST tyres seem to drag like a mofo on tarmac, so I might need to try some alternatives, but still I seem to have found a fairly straight forward way of getting into the area to the north west of Manchester. Not quite made it to Rivington yet, but it’s definitely doable and almost within reach.

View Interactive Map on

Just Planted a Tree
May 22nd, 2008

Plant a tree

I like this kind of thing.

TF Tuned
May 22nd, 2008

I’ve exchanged a few emails with Tim Flooks recently partly to find out whether he’d bought that Ti Deluxe he was pondering for his 50th (it’s due later this summer) and also to work out what to do about the Fox Vans off the Singlespeed. They came off the bike over the winter in favour of the rigid pace forks. They’re the 2004 forks and after several years of riding, the stanchions are worn out and they need a service.

TFT Tuned

Normally I’d consider buying a new pair, but Tim tells me that the new Vanillas can’t be reduced in travel from the 140mm, which is too much for the Singlespeed because it was designed around 100mm. Thing is that they’re amazing forks too, so keeping them going is an obvious solution. I’ve just booked them in for a service and uplift collection and they’ll shortly be on the receiving end of some top notch fettling.

After speaking to them on the phone, I’m reminded that TF Tuned customer service is amazing too, why can’t all companies you speak to over the phone be that good?

May 18th, 2008

For a little while I’ve been getting mildly irritated by a number of false user registrations coming through each day. In the past these accounts if left active have then resulted in unwanted SPAM comments. reCAPTCHA has been the logical choice for a long time to counter this, but it’s only been this weekend that a solution has come along that solves the issue. the solution I’m using at the moment is largely the work of this chap, you can read more about the plugin on his site, but there are one or two little bugs that have been highlighted so far.

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