|1992 Klein Attitude|
When I started off road biking on an actual off road bicycle, (as opposed to just riding any ol' bike in the woods), it was on a Mongoose Sycamore. It was an okay bike, but at the time, the shop where I had purchased it had a screaming pink frame with a custom build that would have fit me to a tee, but it was about $200.00 more than I wanted to spend. That bike was super sweet, and deeply discounted.
I always kicked myself for not getting it, and "settling" for the Sycamore. Not that the Sycamore was "bad", it was just barely enough bike for what I was doing then. That pink number was a purpose built single track shredder. It would have been all that I needed.
Well, the Sycamore was showing the kinks in its armor when I took it down to the local bike shop at the time, Advantage Cyclery in Cedar Falls. The owner took me aside and kindly explained how I needed the "right tool for the job" that I was doing. It all made sense. So, in late summer of 1991, I started looking for a new rig.
I got stacks of catalogs, magazines, talked to lots of folks, and the owner of Advantage. Finally, in very early 1992, I decided on a Klein in Sunset Linear Fade.
|Do Your Eyes Hurt Yet?|
The problem was- for me- that the frame was ultra-stiff. Crazy stiff! So stiff that even small "G-outs" on our local trails would rebound the back end into the air. I crashed so many times due to this bike it wasn't funny. At least it wasn't to me.
So one day at work a former shop race team bike came in. It was a Park Pre 925 in the neon yellow/blue colors. It was steel, my size, and rode about 10,000 times better than the Klein did. I picked it up and the Klein slowly started getting less and less rides. In a last ditch effort to make it work, I had a custom aluminum spacer machined so I could insert a Softride suspension stem into the steer tube. It helped, but I didn't like the weird monkey motion that it induced. So.....in 1996, I sold the bike.
I knew it was still in town, and I am amazed to say that it pretty much, (with exception of the rear wheel and saddle), is exactly the way I had it in 1996. It came in for servicing the other day, and I got to clean it up one last time.
Just like the old days. See ya down the trail, old friend!