Friday, June 29, 2018

Friday News And Views

Kansas can be serene or it can be violent. Tornadoes are a constant threat.
A Chance To Give Back:

Have you ever done the Dirty Kanza 200 and gone through a checkpoint town? The ride absolutely takes over these burgs for the day, and the citizens are all about supporting it, for the most part. It is an amazing welcoming in of a horde of cyclists that they don't have to do. Well, one of these towns, Eureka, Kansas, was struck by a tornado and suffered a lot of damage. Now, if you have ever benefited from the checkpoint towns in that event, you have a chance to show you care.

A fund raising site has been started to raise funds which will go to helping Eureka get back on its feet again. We have responded at and we ask that you join in and help these amazing, kind folks in Eureka.

Here's the link. No amount is too small. Please consider giving..... Thank you.

In addition DK Promotions is offering 20% of all DK merch sales made now through July 31st to Eureka's recovery efforts. You can check it out HERE 

High Tech Zip Ties v2
 Hip Lok Z Lok Combo & Z Lok:

I got a couple of these Hip Lok "zip tie-like" locks in to check out recently. They are kind of like the Ottolock  I reviewed on, but these have a few different characteristics.  

First and foremost, the Z Lok Combo, (the one with the black sliding "switch") is a LOT shorter than an Ottolock is. Secondly, it has a solid steel strap encased in plastic, whereas the Ottolock uses a stainless steel mesh inside the plastic outer. 

This makes the Z Lok Combo a lot stiffer and a lot tougher to use since you have to have a frame member right up against something you want to lock to. That isn't always easy to do. The stiff, steel strap isn't very pliable either, so slight twists and bends that an Ottolock can do, this lock cannot. 

While I don't have any data to back it up, I am betting the Z Lok Combo is tougher to defeat though. It just depends on if you can make it work where you need to lock the bike up for a few moments. Oh yeah, and due to its form factor, it isn't as easily stowed as the Ottolock either. But here's the kicker. The Z Lok Combo only costs $19.95. That's a big difference from the 18" Ottolock  which runs North of $50.00 on most sites. 

The smaller Z Lok is different. It has the steel strap core but uses a forked key to unlock it. I wouldn't rely on this ten dollar lock alone, but you can use it to lock gear to your bike, disable a wheel, and it compliments a Z Lok Cobo well in that role.  Together you could use both to temporarily lock up your rig to go inside a convenience store, for instance, to resupply on a gravel ride. Or use these to disable your bike while camping out on a bike packing trip. 

 Pink MCD Update:

I am patiently waiting for the Black Mountain Cycles Monster Cross Disc (MCD) frame and fork to show up, which is looking like mid to late July as of now. Yes, the frames land here in early July, but it takes time to pass through customs, get into Mike Varley's hands at Black Mountain Cycles, and then turned around and shipped out to eager customers like myself.  

According to the latest update provided by Mike this week, the run on the initial MCD frame order is intense. Many sizes are running out. No surprise here. If this MCD is anything like the quality and design which are evident in the OG Monster Cross frame and fork, this bike will be stellar. The word is out now, and the price that this frame and fork are going for is a great bang for the buck. And I haven't even seen or handled one, so that may sound like crazy talk. However; I have faith that this will be bourne out when the MCD gets here and many other folks feel likewise. 

Well, with that out of the way, the latest thing that is getting put together in advance of the frame and fork arriving is the wheel set. All I need to do now is to get an 11 speed cassette and mount my WTB Resolutes on the Irwin Cycling Carbon Aon GX 35 wheels. I kind of want to hold off on the cassette until I square away my choice for the crank set. Gearing will play a big role here, so cassette choice has to go along with that. 

The cock pit is getting squared away as well. I have already chosen some bits I have here to use on this bike. The Redshift ShockStop stem is going on with a Salsa Cycles Cowchipper bar. The seat post will be the excellent Salsa Cycles Ti regulator. The saddle will be a Brooks Cambium C17 All Weather. Tape will be Marque Cycling Diamond Tape in Pink. 

Really, the only missing parts are the head set and crank set/bottom bracket. That and cables, housings, and whatever smaller bits I need. I've got a few weeks to square this away. I'll need all that time, especially after the bill I paid to fix my truck, which came out of the bike fund. Yeah......ouch.  

Thanks for reading here! Have a great weekend and try to stay cool and hydrated! 


Tyler Loewens said...

That pink frame and those wheels - this is going to look so rad!!

Guitar Ted said...

@Tyler Loewens- Thanks! I'm excited about the look too. (Bet you couldn't tell! ;>) )

baric said...

I see you have'nt mentioned any more about brakes. My opinion, you should still hold out for those purple Paul Klampers. Pricey, yes; well designed and engineered, trouble free, excellent; yes, yes and yes! Not to mention they would look pretty awesome on a pink bike. I have plain black Klampers with floating disc rotors on my old outdated Gen II Fargo and love'em.