Thursday, February 07, 2013
My take is that the truth is somewhere in the midst of all that debate. Having the lightest bike is not good, and neither is having a really heavy bike that is hindering your enjoyment of the ride. Like anything requiring balance in life, it is not easy to find the place where weight, (or lack thereof), is at a place which neither hinders you nor causes concern for parts breaking, loss of handling performance, or a credit card drained to the limit.
I used that basic platform for testing all sorts of rigid and suspension forks on one bike. So- the wheels, components, and set up had to remain the same, (or as nearly the same as possible), for the duration of the test. The wheels I used were the stock set off a Raleigh XXIX+G and were not light. Nope. They were in excess of 2000 grams for the set, as I recall, but those Joy Tech hubs just rolled super smoothly. Plus, the WTB rims were stout and stayed stable all throughout that year.
The following year I was finished with the fork testing, so I removed those "old, heavy wheels", and put on some different, high dollar, lighter wheels. You know what? I didn't go any faster, nor did I like them better than those cheesy Raleigh wheels. But I do remember liking the feel of that bike very much back then. No matter that it weighed more than many other "blingy" single speeds out there.
So what was the deal? I think it had a lot to do with every component I set the bike up with for that year after the fork test. They all worked in concert and put me in a position to really get the most out of the Blackbuck. You know, I should build it back as close I can the way it was then! But the point is, I didn't need lighter weight. At least I don't think so.
But then again, I've had a low grade fever and wicked head cold the past few days, so I might be crazier than usual!