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Review: Chumba Ursa 29 plus Bikepacking Rig

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My review of the Chumba Ursa 29+ Bikepacking rig got published on Bikepackers Magazine today.

Check it out!
http://bikepackersmagazine.com/review-chumba-cycles-ursa/

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Merry Christmas! Carol of the Spokes

My USA made, Velocity Blunt 35 rims have held up very well over the last 8 months while running 29+ tires, as well as regular 29er tires. I will likely write up a long term review in the months to come.
Today is Christmas Day, a very special day to me.
In lieu of being able to ride with you all to celebrate this special day, I wanted to share with you my favorite Christmas Carol video, which just so happens to be one that Velocity USA put out last year:

Wide Tires on Narrow(er) Rims

Recently, I have had opportunities to ride a variety of plus tires and rims in a few different combinations. When riding narrower 35mm wide rims, 3.0 tires are definitely more rounded out than they would be with a 45 or 50mm wide rim, but I actually tend to prefer it. I can’t say definitively why it feels better to me, but I suspect that the flattening out of the center tread when run on wider rims feels less precise, harder to turn, and more sluggish to me. Now, with narrower rims, the peaked center tread feels more efficient and lively, quicker to turn, yet when I lean forward on the front 3.0 tire with lower pressure, it compresses, increasing tire surface contact, thereby yielding more front end traction and ultimately more control. I tend to acticely lean into the front when I steer and drift the rear more than I used to with previous setups and have grown to really appreciate the flexibility when I have that 29×3 Chupacabra at 12psi. Shifting weight fore or aft can really make a huge difference in how efficient the bike feels and how much traction the riders have at their disposal. Getting familiar with this sensation has made me faster. Undoubtedly faster.

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29+ Philosophy and Long-Term Surly Krampus Review

While out riding mountain bikes at Black Mountain in San Diego, CA, I caught up with Eli from the LBS, Black Mountain Bicycles, to capture his opinion and experiences from riding the Surly Krampus over the last 3 years. While many of us have experience with riding the plus-bike platforms for a few months, possibly even a year or more, there are very few riders who invested in the Krampus early on like Eli did. Hopefully you will find his long-term experience valuable as I know I did.

Drop Bar Mountain Bike Philosophy and Setup Optimization – Salsa Fargo, Deadwood, and Cutthroat [VIDEO]

In this video, Nick gets the rundown on Mikki’s Salsa Fargo setup for mountain biking, commuting, and bikepacking. Mikki discusses his setup, what he plans to change and why those changes will better suit his application. Part 2 will discuss more on the Cutthroat model, how it differs from the Fargo and Deadwood as well as how it could easily be modified from bikepacking race bike to more of a comfortable commuter or a more generally capable mountain bike.
Many thanks to Mikki from http://revolutionbikeshop.com/ for taking the time to discuss his rig with us. If you are ever in Solana Beach, CA make sure you stop by and say hello!

Thanks for watching.

UPDATE:
20150908 – Just posted part 2/2. You can view it here:
https://ridealongside.wordpress.com/2015/09/07/drop-bar-mtb-philosophy-part-22/

Trek Stache9 29+ Review and First Impressions [VIDEO]

The Trek Stache9 is a very capable 29plus hard tail trail bike with good geometry for aggressive riding on technical trails, minimizing the need to carefully choose exactly the right line. At the same time, the Stache9 excels in climbing since the rear wheel finds traction with the 29×3.0 inch Chupacabra tires on even the steepest and loosest terrains.

Watch the video to hear more about our experience after testing the Trek Stache 9 midfat #plusbike hardtail on the trails in San Diego.

29 Inch Dirt Wizards Now Shipping!

No longer a myth!

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The unicorn-pegasus is coming home to roost!

More info here:
http://http://fat-bike.com/2015/04/surly-dirt-wizards-29-x-3-in-the-wild/

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