Monday, September 26, 2011

Review - Canfield Brothers ONE 2011

Bout time I post this review. I wont go large on the words here, let me keep it somewhat simple this time:

4 different travel settings, 2 different shocks lenghts: (165mm-190mm with 216x63mm shock / 177mm-203mm with 222x70mm shock).
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This is the geo for the medium. See more sizes at the Canfield Brothers website.
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According to the Canfield Brothers, this link takes 8 hours of CNC work. Check out the sturdy 20mm bearings, they should last 2-3 years according to Canfield Brothers. "Its the kind of bike where you dont have to do anything" - Chris Canfield.
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 Sturdy ISCG tabs.
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Weight without shock, size medium, in kg (thats 7.94 lbs):
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The good:

-Very good pedalling efficiency
-Feels very nimble despite its weight
-Absolute ripper when pointing it downward
-Very playfull, and skill boosting
-Feels mistake swallowing
-Versatility! Strap on a dual crown and you got yourself a capable DH bike. And it really feels like one.
-Feels strong and stiff
-Very low top tube, makes alot of room for tricks.
-Works great with Air and a Coil shock
-Full 1.5 headtube, makes it compatible with everything
-Geometry that's years ahead of time

The bad:

-way too low BB in the 165mm setting - with a 160mm fork in the front
- poorly designed dirt "pockets"
- a X12 rear axle would have been better
-You might get problems with pedal-strikes in pedally rocky tech sections if you sag the shock alot (35%+) (too low BB)

Score 5/6

AM setup. Easy to pedal uphill, lots of high speed stability, and playfull. Aggressive AM it is.
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DH setup. More travel while still retaining its playfull character. Its not a full-breed race-dh bike in this setup, but its great for bikeparks.
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Btw, the German mag called "FREERIDE" did a 2011 ONE review. They rated it with a nice 9.5 out of 10. Check it out here.

Got a comment? or a question? feel free to write in the comments section, I does not require a sign-in.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

2012 Ritchey WCS C260 stem - the controversial choice

What is it?
Its the new 2012 Ritchey WCS C260 stem, one of the lightest alloy mtb stems on the market. Not only lightweight, but also strong and stiff. Its 3D forged and machine cut from 7050 alloy, nothing extraordinary there, but what sets this stem apart from others is the 260 deg clamping area. This clamping area wraps around the bar, and has allowed Ritchey to cut more alloy away, whilst still having an extremely stiff stem.

So how light is it?
This light.

Surely thats too lightweight for AM use?
Thing is ive allready been riding this stem for 3 weeks, with no issues at all. No sideflexing, no creeks, no snapped bolts and no lateral/vertical flex. So far its no different than my previous PRO Koryak AM stem.
Apparently the CEN testing score (international strength testing) got passed with flying numbers, and Ritchey says its the strongest stem they have ever done.
Heres my thought about it: Sure its lighweight, but you have to take into account that im using a 70mm version, that's a whole different leverage ratio than, say, 120mm. Shorter is stronger. I did some research, I couldnt find a single broken alloy 70mm stem out there (no I didn't count older stems, nor freak accidents). Thing is, stems breaking today, is extremely rare - You are more likely to snap something else on the bike.

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260 deg clamping area
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Small 3mm bolts, and there is 3 of them in the back, along with a sweeping clamping system (its hard to see in this pic tho'):
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70mm, anodized black, 7 metal bolts in total:
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Im still stressing this stem. Stay tuned.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Rainy trail riding

Rain, rain and rain. Man it just seems to go on and on! Normally I dislike riding in the rain, but sometimes its just a joy. This trip was just that. Peacefull, in new territory, and early in the morning.

You can just barely spot the trail, bikers are obviously not in large numbers here. Fits me just fine.
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Ultra-lushness (yes that's a word) like this reminded me of the B.C. Northshore.
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Now, this anthill had to be about 1.6m (5,2 feet) tall. Its like the godfather of all anthills. Crazy.
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It still rains btw.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Review: SuperStar Components CNC Nano Tech pedals 2011

Superstar Components are rapidly growing, the reason they do so is that they rebrand existing products, and sell them at a lower price due to the fact that there is no middleman. Its an old trick, but its still a smart way of keeping the cost down. I gave it a shot with a pair of pedals.

One of the things they put their sticker on is the CNC Nano Tech pedal. Big and tough, yes. Heavy, with poor grip, yes to that one as well im afraid.
It does have a satisfying big platform, and there where no reliability issues in the 4 months period I have been testing this pedal. But heres the thing; I want my feet to be sticking to the pedals as much as possible, while still giving me the freedom to move my feet should I need it. Problem is that these pedals have such poor grip that you'll be using energy/concentration just to keep you feet on these things. Unacceptable. They where just barely usable for AM, but when used for DH the pedals just couldn't keep up with the grip, and I found myself to be "bounced off" several times. This pedal-behavior spawned some unwanted situations, and in the end; a slower speed.

Quite heavy
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In desperation I tried to sharpen up the pins. It still didn't do the job. Pins are simply too fat and short. 
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The good:
-Reasonably priced
-Satisfying big

The bad:
-Poor grip

Score: 1/6

Friday, September 9, 2011

September AM

Christain brought his new camera to a recent ride, and the 3 top pics in this entry is a result of that.

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I think most mountain bikers that like seeing some airtime, would agree that they have a "favorite" side they throw the bike into, being right or left. This is established early in the riders "career", and it will probably stick with the biker rest of his time on the bike. My strong side is definitely my right side, as seen in the first pic of this post. Recently ive been trying to un-program this behavior, by forcing myself to control the left side as well. Why? It definitely adds to the flexibility, and improves skills as well as flexibility, oh and its fun as well.  Last thing: I honestly dislike seeing myself hiding in my "safe-zone" that is my right side. Variation is good. Trying new things is good as well. Pic below shows me doing a small "leftie".
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Twisted branch
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Seriously Cannondale? I had these grips for what, 3 weeks? And they are already coming apart.
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My Selle Italia saddle snapped as well, just during a normal run. Thats 2 saddles in 3 months time. Whats up with that?
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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Harz mountains; Trip number 492 (or so)

Shot some pics on my most recent ride to the German mountains. Here is a good mixed bunch.

You have to look hard to find ultra lush trails like this one in the Harz area. It pays off tho'. Riding these rooty offcamber descend sections is not only tech as hell, but also provide a big joy. Sniff it it, and let it work inside your brain : )
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Got lucky with the lighting in this shot. Rider is unknown.
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Roots, I loove roots..
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..and I love beer as well. Germans do a great job regarding that.
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Finally a pic that justifyes this drop in Braunlage Bikepark. The transition is...interesting..not only due to its steepness, but due to the fact that it consists of big roots and rocks. Somehow it doesnt pose a problem tho' The far left drop, is actually a stepdown, and is about 3+ meters(9.8 feet), the one in the middle is about 2 meters (6.5 feet), and the one on the far right is about 1.5 meters (4.9 feet).
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I was positively surprised about the FOX Launch Pro Knee Pad (review pending), I went ahead and got the bigger version, called the FOX Launch Pro Knee/Shin Guard. It covers the shin and the calves. To my surprise, this version is INFERIOR to the FOX Launch Pro Knee Pad when it comes to knee protection. You see, the padding on the sides of the knee is very thin, barely offering any protection at all. The shin protection is fine, and the guard itself is pleasent to wear. But if you are looking for addtional protection, then look otherwise! You screwed that one up FOX.
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Friday, September 2, 2011

Video. Last run on the DH line.

Last run of the day. The DH setup works very good, as of now I cant really pinpoint anything I would like to change (well there's allways that BlackBox gear, but you know what I mean). Cant wait to test this setup in Winterberg, where gravity will be in focus. 

Anyway, didnt shoot much in Harz, but got this, and the "crash" in the end was just plain stupid, you can allmost feel my frustration. What a waste of flow. Ok, lets get to it;

Raw edit. 2m55sek.
Direct link:

Embedded version:
(do yourself a favor and choose the 480p resolution)