Sunday, December 28, 2014

2014 - Reviews And Previews

2014 has been very quiet gear-wise for me and my bike. My wishlist was somewhat short, and I wasn't really in the need of anything. Most things where dialed - and I guess that's good. This obviously reflects the short preview/review list for 2014. I guess 2015 will be a bit more gear-heavy.

My ambition to swap out my frame has been delayed to 2015 or 2016 or later, not quite sure yet, the list of frames is short tho'. Anyway, for those of you who missed some of the previews or reviews go for it;

For a whole lot more reviews check out 2013 and 2012.

FiveTen VXi Elements

FiveTen VXI Elements
FiveTen Diddie Schneider
Specialized Butcher Control 2.3"

Coming soon:
Specialized 2FO shoes
Specialized Ground Control tire
Schwalbe 2015 Nobby Nic tire
Schwalbe  Pro Core system
Some sort of "Flat pedals"

See ya all next year.... ppprrrrrr!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Best and Worst of 2014

Thought i'd do a roundup of whats good and bad from 2014. I did it last year, and the year before it, so its time for a new list. So, whats the WORST and BEST stuff of 2014 according to this blog - well lets take a look:

The Best (in random order):

Why the hell did I wait so long to go tubeless? Running sub 2-bar pressures feels awesome, and has actually changed the way I ride. Strap those tires on, squirt in some sealant, and get going.

In Better shape
I grinded the hell out of my trails to get in a better shape for my Alps trip. And it payed of in the end. But the best training was actually the trip itself. The shape I got out of it was very satisfying; the following month after my return from the Alps, riding my bike was like switching on an engine..the legs just kept going, with very little effort. Incredibly satisfying, and I hope to regain this strength once again for the following summer.

The Alps
..Speaking of the Alps. What an awesome place to ride! Amazing trails, lifts everywhere, bikeparks and mind-blowing vistas. This place was beyond my expectation, and I would happily revisit.

Honorable Mention:
Redbull Hardline. Is it freeride, or is it downhill? I guess its both! The concept is awesome, it pushes the sport forward, and I would love to see it get bigger for next year. Check it out here.

The Worst (in random order):

A new new new standard
We need to take a collective stance against >even< more new industry standards, more standards will not benefit you and me as a consumer, so here goes;

In case you missed it, Trek is going full-retard and just introduced a new rear axle standard, the Boost 148. Oh Trek, why do you do this? A new rear axle standard to solve a problem that doesn't exist?

"Feel more confident!" - the promotion video says. Yearh, go fuck yourself with a dirty toilet brush, and go suck a truckers dirty dick on the German highway, that will "boost your confidence!"

(well the Giant overdrive2 system was such a huuuge succes, so why not?)

Trail design
Copy & and paste from last year: 
I don't know where you ride, perhaps you are lucky, and have some sweet trails to ride, designed by some passionate mountain bikers. I'm afraid that I'm not in such situation. I continue to see poor use of terrain, features that are badly executed, a lack of continuity, and overall ill design. The quality of the official trails in the country I live in, is mind bugling poor, and there are no excuses for it to be this way. A thick fog of conservatism has corrupted the official trail building scene, and pretty much nobody does anything about it - because nobody really questions it. This picture wraps it up nicely:

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Review: Specialized Butcher Control 2.3"

Man its been a loong time since I last did a tire review! So its about damn time I do so. 5 months of testing of the Specialized Butcher Control 2.3" is finally complete. I ran it in a tubeless setup the entire time. Specialized has been in the mtb tire business longer than pretty much everyone, so they know a thing or two about tires - and the lineup has been evolving in a more aggressive direction regarding design. I stumbled upon the Butcher by accident, it reminded me a bit of the Maxxis Minion and the Maxxis Highroller, so I though; why not.
So after 5 months, this is what I learned;

This tire is big, and has lots of volume. I wouldn't mind slapping it on my DH bike for the summer if the rubber was a bit more tacky. (actually, Troy Brosnan just won a DH race in Austraila using this tire)
(click to enlarge)

778grams is not bad for a tire this size, but Specialized needs to recalibrate its weight-scale..again. ..They claim its 730grams.
(click to enlarge)

Regarding durability; After continuously slamming the rear tire into sharp rocks in the Alps, I did in the end manage to cut the rear tire enough to see the sealant jizz out of it, all I needed was a few chicks nearby and it would have resembled a true bukake shower.
(click to enlarge)

The open channel system. Maxxis, Specialized, Michelin has done it for years. Continental learned it the hard way. And finally Schwalbe is getting it as well(The new Nobby Nic, anyone?). An open channel system has huge advantages - and for front tire options, I wouldn't touch anything else. 
(click to enlarge)

Note how the side lugs doesn't touch the ground when in a neutral position.
(click to enlarge)

What you roll on is the inner thread(green), only using the side lugs when cornering, this saves you lots of energy, and makes the bike roll easier. Simple yet brilliant.
(click to enlarge)

This is a modern tire that checks all the right boxes, as a front tire for aggressive riding it is among the absolute best. It also functions as a rear tire, but I would consider other options for that - you simply don't get the most out of the side lugs in the rear.

Where the Butcher Control excels is in the front, in a tubeless setup, this is where the Butcher shines. I cant see myself switching it out anytime soon.

The good:
-Great grip!
-Big overall profile
-Huge side lugs
-Tubeless friendly installation
-Works great in versatile environments
-Great Tubeless performance

The Bad:
-I did manage to cut open the tire beyond repair (rear tire) - but it took a lot to do so.
-The center thread should have been a little bit more sloped, to improve rolling resistance.
-The weight-scale at Specialized is still broken..

Size: 2.3"
Tested on: Front and Rear
Claimed weight: 730 gram
Actual weight: 778 gram


Friday, December 12, 2014

The fall of Fall

My little Drop-vid, was initially part of a longer vid, so here it is in its full form. Some new lines in here as well.

With sound. 1m 31sec. HD Available.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

All Mountain Next turns 5 years!

5 years! Crazy huh? I expect to do a year more, I have fun writing this blog and the visitor momentum is still strong, so cheers for another year! : )

(I initially pursued a modeling career in high school, but it never really took of. So I guess I somehow compensate by writing this blog.)

Friday, December 5, 2014

Speaking of drops..

We recently had an opportunity to session some drops and jumps, and one of these drops was the Skull-drop. You drop about 2 meters (6ft) in height, to a nice transition. This is the first vid of it in a POV angle;

Simple edit. With sound. HD available.