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Wednesday, November 25, 2020 4 comments

Iteration 4 (bike)

Dialing in the Fuji’s front derailleur has proven harder than expected. I put it on the stand, tweak the cable tension, and it shifts. Take it off the stand, and it refuses to shift.

When I first got it, Solar suggested I put wider tires on it. That turned out to be easier said than done, at least according to the LBS guy. I’ve pretty much resigned myself to taking the Fooj to the LBS to get that pesky front derailleur set properly, but I need something to ride in the meantime.

Back to my old Raleigh M-60 mountain bike. I thought to myself, “Self… that bike already has 2.1" knobbies and plenty of margin. Could you put fattie tires on it?“ A quick search on the Mighty Zon turned up Big Apple tires—2.35", but like I said, I had plenty of margin. Solar runs the same tires on his Surly Ogre, but the LBS doesn’t carry them… so I bit the bullet and placed the order.

Although the initial order thing said they would arrive Wednesday, they arrived the Friday previous! That gave me time to pull the wheels off the Raleigh and bring them inside, where I removed the knobbies and put on the fatties. The latter popped onto the rims without issue, or even needing the tire tools. Tons easier than getting those Continentals onto Mason’s rims, let me tell you. They look pretty good on the Raleigh… much better than the narrower road tires I had on there for iteration #2 (iterations #1 and #3 were the knobbies). This is what all bike manufacturers should put on a mountain bike without suspension—something suitable for both pavement and dry trails.

Finally, the perfect tires for this bike…

So I was ready for the weekend… but when you live on a farm, every day is Monday. We spent pretty much all weekend fixing fences. As it’s Thanksgiving week, and I need to burn a bunch of vacation time, I took this week off as well. But I needed a flu shot, Mason had a well-check appointment, and there were leaves to be removed… so even Monday didn't work.

But there’s always Tuesday. Solar said that 45psi works great on pavement, so I went with his suggestion. They’re rated for 30-55psi, and the lower pressures should work well on unpaved trails… of which there are plenty here but not so much in Solar-land.

In the afternoon, after replacing my iPhone 6s battery, it was time for the test run. The fatties rolled great over the gravel driveway, and did fine on the road. A mountain bike with fatties is much more versatile than a road bike; it will handle gravel and dry trails without any problem as well as pavement. There’s a slight amount of extra rolling resistance compared to the Fooj running 25mm tires at 100PSI, but it was only noticeable in the app (which showed a lower top speed and an extra minute out of 36 for the 5.6-miler).

Now, I need to get a fresh roll of hockey tape and re-tape the “horns” on the handlebars. The old tape lasted a long time, but now it’s time for a refresh.

Monday, November 23, 2020 No comments

Catching up, Nov 2020 edition

I had a few posts written up for our brush with Zeta, and never published them. I back-dated them to the dates they should have appeared, so (unless you're reading this late Monday night) scroll down to see all the… um, fun.

More coming tomorrow, if I don’t get totally distracted (again).


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