Sunday, April 12, 2009


About 4 years ago I rode a steel bike for the first time, and I really have never looked back. It really is amazing how "buttery" a steel frame rides compared to Aluminum. I do not think that it has a longer life span than other metals because there are so many variables with fabrication and butted tubing.
I have also had the opportunity to ride some different bikes and learn what I like.
My first real bike was a 01 Gary Fisher Supercaliber sized 19. Stupid light and stupid fast. This was probably not the best first bike since it has some pretty twitchy and really stretched me out. I was never comfortable in technical sections. The fork (skareb) was also extremely noodley, and tended to wash and wander in corners. Boo! That lasted about a year.
Then in early 07 I purchased the MC Flight 29. Whoa. All of the sudden I had this bike that felt stable and comfortable, and really fit the riding in NW NC. There was crisp and precise cornering. the ability to roll through stuff comfortably. I think that Flight 29's are a great first bike, and gives you an appreciation for picking a good line and being balanced on the bike. I found that when I started riding on a bike with a suspension fork, I kept my weight too far forward.....well because I could. A rigid bike forces you to relearn your positioning, and the SS reinforces a attack and recovery type of riding.
In late 2007 I purchased a Gary Fisher Rig for the KSU Collegiate MTB season, and then turned it over to Al. The Rig is a bike you can just get on and ride. To be terribly honest there was nothing about the Rig that really stood out in my mind. It was not slow, it was not fast, but it did have a very creaky EBB (which took me a long time to master greasing the crap out of). Al wanted a smaller frame, so I sold the frame and Cranks to Paddy up in Alberta. Al got a new Green MC Flight 29 frame in green, it was cute, we had matching bikes.

Anyhow, after riding Rich's Ferrous at Ouachita I have decided that its time to move on past the MC. So this past week I started scanning the marketplace, and decided what I wanted and what I was willing to pay. So last night I did some bid sniping with less than a minute to go on a new Gary Fisher Ferrous frame.
There are a glut of 29er SS frames on the market and they are all nice, but I am not interested in purchasing a model that I have not been able to test ride. I have a big problem with the lack of demos from manufacturers. So i went with the Ferrous.
I was actually kind of suprised when I started looking at the Geometry of the old (07-08) ferrous frames compared to the new 09 frames....the numbers are the same. They just changed the offset of the fork. The 07-08's were spec'ed with a 38 mm offset Reba, and the 09's come with a 46mm offset F29 Fox. The intrawebs are awash with conspiracy theories about, offset, trail and this G2 foolishness. Its enough to make your head hurt.

But, the important thing is that I got a new frame. Hooray new bikes!


Riding with dogs said...

nice ride! Are you going to ride it rigid SS?

Joshua Stamper said...

Until I can rob enough liquor stores to pay for a new suspension fork. I have X-lite switchblade that I will run on it in the mean time.

Josh said...

Let me know if you need help getting drunk/building her up.