I mentioned briefly in a previous post that I had sold my IP-106 frameset. That leaves poor little me with just one carbon frame in the house, my Sette Razzo SC. Happily, I'm growing to appreciate the Razzo more every time I ride it. Today's ride started off in planning as a group ride, then three of us, then just me and buddy Mike.
We were riding Chestnut Ridge, one of my favorite trails in Ohio. Mike hadn't ridden it before, so it was a new experience for him. Unfortunately, his pre ride prep involved a late night of imbibing while watching OSU hammer Illinois, so he wasn't in peak form for this ride. At least we both made it up the hill to enjoy the view from the apple barn:
Mike has his bike set up somewhat, er, uniquely:
He's committed the fashion faux pas of rotating his riser bar 90 degrees forward, and then installing bar ends. Looks odd, but Mike is somewhat old school like me, and this gives him the low and forward leaning position he liked from his late 90s Giant, which was the bike that immediately preceded his 29er here (Mike's low bike turnover can average out for mine)
Mike wasn't feeling too great from last night's fun, so I described the short cuts for him to head back to the trailhead, while I enjoyed a brisk, clear fall day on the rest of the trail.
I had my Razzo set up with my suspension fork for this ride:
I've noted it before, but the Rocket Ron is a pretty wimpy tire for hardpack. The Vee Rubber Mission isn't great on anything slick, but it was adequate and cushy for today:
Still, when I got home, I spent a bit of time and converted the front over to my rigid Fargo fork and Knard fat tire. I ride my hardtail pretty much like a rigid bike, barely dipping into the fork's travel, so I might as well enjoy the grip and control of the Knard on the front.
Lately, I've been feverishly searching ebay, Craigslist, mtbr.com, etc for a steel 29er hardtail, but it's honestly hard to see how it would improve things over my Razzo. The Razzo rides so smoothly, yet still feels lively and fun to pedal, that I had the thought today that my riding probably wouldn't be as enjoyable on a Surly KM, Salsa El Mar, etc, even with their shorter chainstays and easier wheely-ability. My hope is the lighter front end from my rigid fork will give me some of that flickable feeling, while keeping the smoothness and light weight of the carbon frame.
Besides, not buying Yet Another Steel Hardtail would free up my bike fund for me to take a flyer on something truly odd that I have in mind. Possibly more on this later.
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