Friday, May 10, 2019

Friday News And Views

Paul Thumbies- New! (But not really) Image courtesy of Paul Components
You Should Totally E-Bay Those!

Wednesday I'm cruising my Twitter feed when I scroll up on some newsy bits from a couple of sources saying that Paul Components has released a SRAM TT shifter compatible mount that turns these bar end shifters into old school thumb shifters. Now normally, I would just scroll right on by something like that. However; I was immediately struck by the fact that someone, (actually it was Tweeted by three different accounts I follow), thought these were "new". "They are not new!", I thought to myselfHeck, I could walk down into my Lab and grab a pair I've had kicking around for years now. New? I don't think so. I went down, within two minutes had them in hand, and shot an image, then tweeted it out asking if my circa 2011 Paul Thumbies could be "new".

A couple of the accounts I "@'ed" (code for adding an account to a Tweet which then directs said Tweet "at" the account.- Pronounced "at-ed") responded with a social media equivalent of a shrug, and they in turn "@'ed" Paul Components account for a definitive answer.

The answer I got from Paul Components on Twitter
So, I had jumped on getting those at the right time, apparently, because back then, I had no clue they were a very limited edition sort of product. I actually got them for my Ti Mukluk, which I used the right shifter by itself at first since I ran 1 X 10 SRAM to start out with. That didn't last long, the shifter came off, and the pair of mounts has been basically sitting on my bench in my little box of bar end shifter parts ever since. I just don't do much with geared, flat bar bikes these days. Anyway, I thanked Paul Components and figured that was that.

Then one of the accounts that was part of the thread snaps back with "hangs up, dials e-bay......" I replied back that this was a well played comment, but I wasn't looking to make a buck from my newfound knowledge dumped on me by Paul Components. Then another follower of mine on Twitter basically answered that and said "take the money and run!"

Social media. Weird. Sometimes it's a fun, knowledge builder. Other times.....well. 

Ingrid's 12 sped rear derailleur Courtesy of Ingrid's Instagram feed
 They Said It Would Last Forever:

Back on the 1990's heyday of CNC craziness, I purchased a "Made In The USA", CNC'ed, lightweight rear derailleur by a company called ProShift. It was "totally rebuild-able" and theoretically would last "forever" since you would be able to purchase any piece or part of that derailleur and rebuild it. It was VERY EXPENSIVE. I bolted it to my 1992 Klein Attitude and started riding.

Well, one day, under no extraordinary circumstances, I heard a "ker-CHUNK!", felt a tug on the chain, and then no power. I looked down and what was left of that derailleur was dangling from a very slack chain. In fact, the only part that survived was a jockey wheel! Every other part was ripped, twisted, or bent beyond recognition. I boxed up all the bits I could find, shipped it to ProShift, and they sent me another under warranty. That derailleur suffered the same fate exactly two weeks later. Again- the only part that survived was the lower jockey wheel.

Well, I had had enough. I got a "real" rear derailleur, went on my merry way, and ProShift quickly became a thing of mountain bike legend. I was reminded of that story again when I read about an Italian based company called "INGRID".

They have, what looks like CNC'ed metal, in the form of a rear derailleur and are saying "it will last forever because it is rebuild-able". Yeah.......

Once bitten, twice shy.

Flat pedal shoes from Giant Bicycles.
 Shoes To Get The Fargo Ready:

Yes, you read that right. I've got some shoes and that is motivating me to get the Fargo up and running. Why? Because the Fargo has flat pedals on it now. The idea is that I am going off to do some longer gravel rides on flats. To test the shoes. The shoes I have on test for Those shoes.....

Anyway, I think it is high time for some new treads for the Fargo as well. I've got me eye on the new Vittoria Terreno Cross Country tires. They have the Graphene compound and I've had experience with this in their Terreno Dry 40mm tire. Those Graphene infused tires have "something" going on and that is something good. It is an uncanny tire in that it shouldn't grip as well as it does, nor roll as fast as it does, but it does. I've also heard it wears like iron. Too good to be true? Maybe, but I am convinced there is a lot more good to these tires than bad.

So, once the tires are on, I am shooting to do some longer rides on flats and hopefully get ready for the Prairie Burn 100 and the Solstice 100, both events coming up really soon! I need to get some miles in my legs and fast.

That's all for this cold, wet week. Let's hope the weather turns around and warmer weather comes. Oh.....and Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers out there!


bostonbybike said...

I don't know how durable that Ingrid system is, but it does look interesting actually - especially the shifters. Having shifters like these would allow me to switch to TRP Hylex brakes, without a need to go to electronic Di2.
The cassette ranges look good too - not everyone needs Eagle's huge 10-50T range. I'd like to see more options such as 10-46T.

BTW - have you ever used Paul rear mech back in the 90's? It was also rebuild-able and should've lasted a lifetime.

Doug M. said...

I switched to flat pedals for geared MTB last year and it's been great. Very challenging at first, but I'm almost as confident in technical terrain now on flats as I am clipped in, and my bunny hops have improved dramatically. Free your sole ;-)