Greetings :Well, lots of people move to places like Florida and Arizona to find weather like this. Tuesday was absolutely gorgeous! Sadly I didn't get a chance to get out and ride but it sure was a beautiful day for it. Hopefully we'll get some more rain this weekend, in between riding, of course.
I got out Saturday for a quick hood ride and some exploration. The shot to the right here is heading up and southeast on Loma Prieta Rd, almost to the top of the paved part. The pic below is very near this shot, which are the fireplace ruins of a large residence that burned down in the early 1900's. You can spot the fireplace and another chimney structure as you ride by going up. (Strava)
So, speaking about riding, one of the topics of frequent questions and discussions these days is wheel size, specifically mountain bike wheels.
Right now, the market is peddling three different sizes, all of which require different tires, tubes, frame sizes, and suspension components. A very nice thing for the bike industry but not so good for the consumer.
Early mountain bikes all had 26-inch wheels (26 inch / ISO 559mm), which were the wheel size of the American cruiser bikes that the early pioneers of mountain biking adapted to ride the dirt on. This wheel size served the sport for well over 25-years.
I'm not sure when the 29er wheel size (29 inch / ISO 622mm / 700C) first hatched, but most believe it was heavily promoted by the bicycle industry to sell more product. In any case, the herd was pushed towards it and today the 29er is the most prolific MTB sold today. In fact, most mainstream manufacturers don't even offer a top-line 26-inch bike in their lineup these days.
For me, I never liked the 29er feel and weight so never did invest in it. True, there are race courses and trails where the 29er clearly has advantages. However, here in the Bay Area, I always felt the 26-incher was the most versatile rig, at least for the kind of riding I do.
Now, all that said, the 29er isn't just a fad, it does provide the less experienced rider with a smoother and seemingly more confident ride and feel, and truly can tackle certain terrain with a more predictable and confidence inspiring attitude. And today, the typical 29er isn't much heavier than a comparable 26-incher so the major trade-offs are in handling quickness and agility; the 26-inch rig will turn and accelerate significantly quicker but the 29er provides a smoother ride. So there you have it, right? Well, not exactly...
To further complicate things--and sell even more product--the industry came up with the 27.5 or the 650B wheel size (27.5 inch / ISO 584mm / 650B). And yes, of course, you need a different frame, different fork, tires, and tubes all over again.
The 650B is actually just a solution in between the 29er and the 26-incher. If you lined up all three sizes you would see the circumference difference between each is almost uniform. For example, the difference between the 26-inch and the 650B is 25mm, the difference between the 650B and the 29er is 38mm. Of course, different tire profiles can make these difference more or less.
I've only ridden a couple of these 650B rigs and, no, I'm not going run out and invest in this setup either. However, if I did win the lottery or was otherwise in the market for a new MTB rig, I'd definitely go with the 650B over the 29er. Not just because you can no longer buy a new top-shelf 26-inch MTB, but because I just prefer the quick handling and stiffer feel of the smaller wheel and frame size. So, now you have more insight into the whole big wheel/little wheel conundrum. My advise, go with the smaller wheel size unless you're a giant.
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Wahoo KICKR's seem to be back in stock so lead-time is back to normal, about 7 days. I can't justify spending that much money on a trainer, but they are pretty awesome for those who have real jobs and can't get out to ride. You can go buy one locally or online but buying from me gets you a better price and much better support, of course.I'm placing my usual supplier orders Wednesday afternoon. Please let me know if you need anything not currently available via Parts Express. I have many items on-hand and I can deliver very quickly. I tend to carry tubes, tires, chains, cassettes, bar tape, bearings, brake pads, and other common consumable items in my vehicles. So that kind of stuff is always available extremely quickly. Just let me know what you need and I'll get it to you ASAP.
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Cane Creek | Smartbikeparts.com | BTI/USA | Hawley USA | J&B Importers | Hawk Racing | iBike Sports
Velocity Wheels | Easton Cysing Products | Wahoo Fitness | SeaSucker
Wahoo! Just a reminder that MyTeamCar.net is also an authorized Wahoo Fitness dealer. Those of you looking for the latest in indoor trainer technology, the Wahoo KICKR is amazing. REMINDER: If you ever have any issues with your bike after I service it, please call/text/or email me ASAP. I'll find you and get it fixed as quickly as possible. Stuff happens. Part of the value of my service is that you don't have to return your bike or wheels to a shop. I will come to you, no-charge of course.Again, don't forget about my Spot Tune-up Service. This is a cheap and convenient way to keep your bike rolling smoothly and efficiently. I find you and dial-in brake and shift cables and take care of any minor issues that can be resolved onsite. Only $30 and extremely convenient.PLEASE NOTE: MyTeamCar.net customers enjoy competitive pricing from all my suppliers. The list prices shown on my site are not necessarily what you'll pay. If you know that the price is higher than your local dealer or favorite online retailer, just shoot me the link and/or let me know. I will match any reputable price out there. I can usually get just about anything. If you need things quickly, just mention the specifics. I can get most things in my hands overnight, next-day, or two-day, it just costs more for shipping. And, yes, you will receive tracking info as soon as I receive it. Okay, shut-up and ride!