Well, with the disappointment in missing CIRREM I figured I had better get busy and make the most of the extra time on my hands. But before we get to that, here is something I wanted to show...
I did initially try the fenders with the Bontrager XR-1's, but besides not being wide enough, there really wasn't any room to fit them anyway. So, I knew the IRC tires would motor me through the muck, and they have much better tread for that sort of thing anyway. They feature some side lugs that remind me of tractor lugs. They also have a pretty stiff casing. I rode the bike briefly on Sunday with 40psi in the tires, and it looked and felt like I had 55psi in there.
I used these tires when the bike was a single speed last year, so they do well on gravel too. I may leave them on there until something better, (Clement MSO), comes along. The fenders will stay for now as well. I figure it can't hurt anything and I went to all the trouble of putting them on there after all. If I like them, I may opt for some fancy-schmancy aluminum ones, or something.
I need to get a few more rides on the Retroshift set up before I render my final verdict on these. I have learned a trick or two in how to shift them, and I also have found that the shifters allow for unique hand placements on the hoods/levers. The cables don't get in the way at all, by the way. I know some folks were wondering about that.
I did think that if you run a handle bar bag, these shifters might work better. Maybe not for a huge touring bar bag, but smaller bags or rolls should fit just right even with the cables where they are. On a down tube cabled bike, it would even be better.
Titus Rockstar. It's the second generation of this frame, which I was mentioning Friday. Well, I got to tinkering with the wheels and setting them up tubeless.
I went with the "MG" formula, which is just really a notch above anything else out there. It and the fit of the Rubena Scylla tires on the Crank Brothers rims seems to be all a match made in heaven, because I think it ranks right up there with one of the easiest non-Bontrager set ups I've done.
The bike is billed as an XC/Trail bike. It seems a lot like the Specialized Epic Marathon I rode for a bit. It weighs a touch less, feels similar out of the box, and has similar angles. Biggest difference is in bottom bracket height. Makes me want a dropper post. In fact, this bike really calls out for one, in my mind.
Next up for the tubeless conversion? By-Tor the Titanium Mukluk. Yup. Gotta do it because I'm taking it to Texas soon. That and a set of wheels I just built up, and re-charging some older wheels. Yeah. It must be Spring time or something!
Time to move ahead and get ready to roll.