Author Archives: "Vernon Felton"
The Santa Cruz Bantam is designed around 650b wheels and sports a bevy of smart features that include 142×12 rear thru-axles, ISCG-05 tabs, Santa Cruz’s excellent collet-axle pivots and a threaded bottom bracket. Best of all, the frame can be had for $1,300.
I don’t have a serial-killer van. Let’s be clear about that. No restraining order either. But I can’t deny the basic facts: I’m distracted. I’m irrational. I spend my days plotting how I’ll bring home the thing I desire… I’m pretty sure I’m ticking off all the little boxes on the stalker personality profile. And it’s all because of a bike…
What exactly sets the new GT Force and Sensor apart from past GT models? Why did GT decide to change things up this year? We gave Todd Seplavy, GT’s director of product management, a call to get the answers and we pulled this new GT Force out of its box and took it for its maiden voyage.
When I consider the big picture—just how lame we cyclists appear to the rest of the world—I have a hard time saying which is worse: Is it the fanny pack or the gorby gap? The purple baggies or the Team Sky sausage suit? The tri-geek’s banana hammock or the dirt jumper’s skinny jeans? We are all cyclists. We all look lame. We are united by our lack of cool.
Are there any new bikes that I think actually present a good value? Bikes that are ready to rock and roll right out of the box without a bunch of pricey upgrades? Yup. Plenty of them. Here are a few of my personal favorites–from hardtails to big-hit bikes.
Yes, bikes are stupid expensive these days—I’m not denying that—but there’s also no denying that you generally get a lot more for your buck today. Some thoughts on why bikes cost so damn much, why we write about them and what you can do to avoid bleeding your wallet to death the next time you buy.
There’s this guy that I hate. He’s a complete tool. I guess my dislike for him is sort of ironic because we have a lot in common. We’re from the same town. We ride the same trails. We wear the same general-issue, bike-dork uniform, except his fits better. Bastard.
I hear some people arguing that all this wheel-size talk is just crap. I understand that sentiment perfectly. It truly doesn’t matter what wheel size you’re riding, so long as you are actually out there riding. I’m simply interested in the tipping point and how we reached it with so little debate this time around. Most new products are met with serious skepticism–650b, on the other hand, was given a global, sloppy kiss and a free pass. I find that odd.
Compared to the haberdashery of modern downhilling, Greg ‘HB’ Herbold’s roughly 20-year old, sublimated, spandex skinsuit is about as alien as a vegan in a steakhouse. But for a few years during mountain biking’s early history, a costume like this could turn a talented mortal into a hero.
Chapter 4 of Cold Rolled explores the development of Marquette’s Snow Bike Route–a 15-mile stretch of perfectly-packed singletrack amidst the deep snow. If you never thought you needed a snowmobile and a welding torch, this video might seed a lust for those very things. Very cool.