Two Year Review: Specialized Propero III

Helmets, oddly enough, causes heated debates among cyclist, but not in the this one is better than that one, but in terms of whether you should or shouldn’t wear one. I’ve of the mind that you have nothing to lose in wearing one when riding, other than messing up your hair.

Similarly, I’ve wanted to write a review of my now two year old Specialized Propero III helmet for a while but kept putting it off. The main reason why? I wear a helmet for my own personal safety when cycling, and in the two years I’ve owned it, I’ve been fortunate enough to not need to find out how well it protects my noggin.

This review will focus then on the second, third and fourth most important aspects of a cycling helmet, how it looks, how it looks on my head, and how much it makes people laugh at how it looks on my head.

After two years of use, it still looks good as new.
Continue reading “Two Year Review: Specialized Propero III”

Things that don’t make sense in the bike industry Vol 1: Aero Gravel Bikes

I’m a bike geek, I love bike tech almost (maybe more when I’m not riding) as much as actually riding. I spend many hours drooling over the latest bikes, components and water bottle cages. Cycling however isn’t immune to those “WHAT WERE THEY THINKING” moments, where I’m left scratching my head thinking that makes no sense and serves no purpose other that generating sales.

A case in point came in the recently announced 3T Exploro RaceMax, an evolution of one of the first (that I recall seeing) aero gravel bikes, the 3T Exploro.

WHAT WERE THEY THINKING!

While I can appreciate the engineering and design, I’m reminded of an oft used line in Game of Thrones that goes something like “[it’s] as useless as nipples on a breastplate”.

Continue reading “Things that don’t make sense in the bike industry Vol 1: Aero Gravel Bikes”

300km in, initial thoughts on the Ritchey Ergomax Comp handlebars

Handlebars, much like saddles to a lesser degree, what works for one person, does not mean it’ll work for the next. I have used handlebars that friends swear by, but just didn’t work for me at all. In that vain, one should take reviews and thoughts on handlebars and saddles, in terms of comfort with a pinch of salt. With that in mind, time to jump in with the Ritchey Ergomax Comp.

They said just get an Arkose, so I did – New (Old) bike day

Life happened and I sold my dream bike, the “New York Mets” Carbonda CFR505, my full carbon, full Di2 do it all bike. For the past five months I’ve borrowed the missus’ undersized hybrid for my daily commutes and put to bed my long weekend rides and silly desire to go as hard and fast as possible.

These past months have been miserable on the borrowed bike. There is something just, fundamentally fun to ride a bike you’ve built up just how you want, to ride your bike.

The search started, the search for the framework to build the next bike, bike number six. Trawling the classifieds of cycling forums, I got this little beaut… The Pinnacle Arkose 2018

Not the best photo, but it’ll look quite different when I’m done with it
Continue reading “They said just get an Arkose, so I did – New (Old) bike day”

Getting the perfect fit – Bont Riot+ MTB

By far the most comfortable shoes I’ve cycled in, well, most comfortable SPD shoes I’ve used are my Bont Riot+ MTB shoes. The base is nice and wide, stiff enough and the BOA/strap closure keeps my foot locked in. The only fault, and it’s more to do with my odd shaped right foot than the shoes, is that I get pain on the outside near the pinkie toe on rides longer than 1.5 hours.

With most shoes on the market, I’d have to grin and bear it, but that is not the reason I bought the Bonts. Oh no, I bought the Bonts specifically because you can heat mould them to the shape of you foot, as opposed to trying to shape your foot to the shoes.

This could all end in tragedy, but let’s get cooking.

Continue reading “Getting the perfect fit – Bont Riot+ MTB”

0km preview: Shimano Deore XT PD-T8000 Flat/SPD pedal goodness?

Sometimes I don’t want to go through the process of digging out my Bonts, strapping up and dialling in the boas for the short tide to work. I don’t always want to channel my inner Merckx and just slap on some civilian shoes and ride about.

Enter the Shimano Deore XT PD-T8000 pedals.

Flat on one side, spd on the other. The best of both worlds?
Continue reading “0km preview: Shimano Deore XT PD-T8000 Flat/SPD pedal goodness?”

0km preview: Pirelli Cinturato Velo TLR 35mm

It’s new rubber day, and today is the handsomely packaged Pirelli Cinturato Velo TLR 700c x 35mm tyres.

ptr

After years of denial, and aching limbs after many a ride around the cratered, battered streets of London, 25mm ‘pro’ tyres were just not cutting the mustard. Sure, they looked the business, but I died a little inside each time I felt the road buzz travel up my spine on those 100 psi wonder rubbers.

Enter (I hope!) the one that will bring balance to the spine, the Pirelli Cinturato Velo TLR 700c x 35mm (from this point on just referred to as the Pirellis or Cinturatos).

I’ve tried many a ‘big’ tyres in my search of comfort, speed and comfort. The Panaracer Gravel King, in knobbly and file tread flavours, the Schwalbe G-One Allround, the Specialized Roubaix 2bliss, but in someway, they all felt like a compromise or didn’t perform as I had hoped.  Continue reading “0km preview: Pirelli Cinturato Velo TLR 35mm”