Friday, December 01, 2017

Friday News And Views

A larger Husker Du- Claimed "true 4.8". We'll see about THAT!
45NRTH Debuts New Larger Husker Du:

45NRTH has some pretty cool treads for fat bikes. One of the originals was the Husker Du. The tread has since been redesigned, but it was never offered in a big, wide casing. That has changed with the announcement of a 4.8" (claimed) Husker Du.

The new Du is said to be tubeless. That's really good. It also is supposed to be available in a 120TPI folding bead casing.

This is good if it is really a 4.8"er. 45NRTH has introduced tires that hinted at being big, but in reality they weren't so much. This has always been a bit of a pet peeve of mine about the brand's tires. That and getting anything 45NRTH is about as easy as it is to win the State lottery.

But aside from that, I really like that the tread design was made in the way that it was. If you want big, chewy, tractable knobs, you've got choices. However, since the demise of the Big Fat Larry tread design, a truly big, low tread design suitable for flotation and low rolling resistance needs has been lacking in the fat bike world. Well, at least good choices are lacking. The Husker Du in the 4.8" size, (again- IF it is that size), would be super for semi-groomed trails, where the snow isn't completely packed in. It also would shine on sand, deep gravel, or marshy terrain where float is the paramount characteristic one is wanting.

I could totally see this as a second tread for my Blackborow DS. In fact, it should weigh less, due to the lack of big rubber blocks, than a Bud tire, and with a carbon rimmed wheel set, I could also gain some speed. I like the idea of this tire. Let's hope it is what 45NRTH says it is and that one could actually get them.

The Sonder Camino AL, also available as a titanium frame
A Word About Gravel Bike Geometry:

I've talked about this off and on for the last five years or more, but I believe that there is a certain geometry that is most conducive to fun and pleasure on the gravel roads.

Please note- I am not talking about racing. 

The whole gravel/all-road thing gets held against standards based upon racing bikes by the traditional cycling media hacks all the time. The idea of not racing at all on a bicycle seems to be a foreign one to many of these people. I see complaints about gravel bikes not being "snappy" upon acceleration, handling like a wagon in turns, or being too upright. Well, maybe you don't have the right perspective. Maybe you could have a gravel racing bike, and maybe the rest of the rigs could be for non-competitive, enjoyable, fun bicycling. 

I know, crazy talk. I should just shut up and get out of the way. Right? You'd think so by reading reviews these days.

Anyway..... There is a geometry I think would work best. The Sonder Camino AL really hits most of the marks I would like to see in a gravel bike. Lower than 70mm bottom bracket, 71° head tube angle, 435mm chain stays, and a tallish head tube. I'm not big on aluminum, but you never know. It could feel okay. They do make a Camino in titanium, so there is that. Oh! It's an Alpkit bike, so you'd have to order from the UK.

It's pretty intriguing, as it ticks a lot of my boxes, but it does have a carbon fork. Not big on that. I might have to swap it out for a proper steel fork, but then again, I am in no rush to do anything right now. It is almost Winter, right?

Another one bites the dust.
Hi! I'm Guitar Ted, And I Am A Camera Killer:

I remember it well. It was a Renegade Gent's Race where I had my old Fuji point and shoot and I dropped it on the pavement, ending its life. Well, I pretty much repeated the act again Thursday riding home from work. My Olympus TG-3 is dead.

I was riding the Black Mountain Cycles "Orange Crush" and I had my camera stowed in the Bike Bag Dude Chaff bag. That bag has a cinch top, but I just had the TG-3 sitting in there like it was in a cup holder. No big deal, right?

Well, I was getting pretty aggressive on the ride home, going along at a good clip, maybe 20mph, when I hopped a curb. When I came down the front tire hit pretty solidly and the camera bounced up and out of the bag. Of course, it didn't hit dirt, it hit the pavement at 20mph. I figure it knocked the sensor askew as it doesn't frame up a shot correctly anymore. It's okay, I've had a good run with it.

I posted something about it on social media and almost immediately a friend reached out with a possible solution to my dilemma. I won't be able to say anything concrete just yet, but things are looking good for a quick and agreeable solution to my mishap.

Stay tuned, and more importantly, make sure that whatever you put in a bag on your bike is restrained somehow from bouncing out. My bad!

Have a great weekend and get some riding in!


Unknown said...

The know it alls over on MTBR are pre-hating the new HDs, but I think they're interesting too. The wider a tire gets the less traction you need on hardpack because your giant footprint gives you traction.

I still wouldn't replace a perfectly good tire with one of these, but they may be on the list after my Barbeghazis wear out.

Michael Lemberger said...

Granted, I will probably never get a chance to ride that Sonder Camino, but it's hard to imagine a better bike for regular gravel fun than the All City Space Horse. The more I ride mine, the more I like it.

Whether it's any good for racing is something I'll soon be finding out.

Cory said...

A Soma Wolverine replaced my Vassago Fist a year ago. My Wolvie rides like a cadillac compared to the Fist.

On a note about riding this weekend Ted, I am keeping my rides to around town here. Deer season started this weekend and it is too dangerous to be out on the gravel. Too many hunters driving fast and flinging slugs in all directions. Gonna be this way for most of December so people BE CAREFUL if your still planning on grinding in Iowa. Dangerous time right now.