New Bike – First Ride

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As a guy in love with bicycles, it is always super exciting riding a new bike.  I don’t care if it is the exact some bike as I just had, a new frame, wheels, etc. always ride just a little different than the previous one.

But, that isn’t the deal here.  I finally had time to put together that new Eriksen (Bingham design) dual suspension frame I got a couple months ago in Steamboat Springs.  It took me a little while to roundup the components and I’m still a little short, missing a XTR rear brake and top pull derailleur, but I had enough to get it together to ride.  The bike is full XTR, with 650b wheels, and a Fox CTD shock and fork.

Assembling bikes take a lot more than when I worked at Gran Sport Bike shop when I was a kid. I used to assemble bikes there and received a dollar a bike to put them together.  My brother, Kris, first had this job, but I took it over eventually.  After a while, when reflectors became law, the pay went up to $2 a bike.  I could assemble 3 an hour before reflectors.  After, it was a lot slower, around 2 an hour, so it was really just $1 an hour raise, which was still substantial.

This “build” took me a couple days.  I’m not exactly sure why.  Just a lot of stuff to deal with. Cutting the hydraulic brake lines and bleeding them takes longer than cable brakes. Plus stuff I hadn’t done before, putting the remote lockout kit on the Fox shock for one.  I have a dual lockout, which locks the front and rear suspensions together with one lever.

Whatever the reason, I was standing in the garage for hours.  I got it done about 1 am and had to take it out for its virgin ride.  I just rode down across the footbridge and headed over to Washburn University to ride on the grass.  I haven’t ridden a dual suspension bike in a really long time.  Man is it smooth over rough stuff.  I don’t know exactly how smooth, but it is pretty smooth on bumpy grass.

Tomorrow I’m heading out to LA to ride with the South Bay wheelmen on Saturday, the Donut Ride, and then go to their annual club banquet.   One of my first big road trips was out to Manhattan Beach to stay with my friend Ed Bauman, so I’ve ridden the ride a few times.  It has been going on for over 40 years.  If you’re in the area, come out out at 8 am Saturday morning. It should be a really good time.

I’m racing the BT Epic next weekend and this new Eriksen should roll those trails super quick. Berryman is a super fun race, but I didn’t do it last year, due to my broken hip.  They changed the course up a little, so I won’t know about a 1/3 of the course, not that I remember much of the other parts I’ve already raced.  It takes a lot of concentration doing that race.  It is over 50 miles and has lots of pretty technical riding.

Today, I plan to ride over to Clinton Lake and ride the trails there today.  Clinton has some pretty crazy rocky sections, especially on the white trail.  This bike should be perfect for that.  I’ll let you know how it works out.

Not the best photo, but this shows the linkage for the dual suspension.

Not the best photo, but this shows the linkage for the dual suspension.

It seems like there are lots of cables with the extra two for the remote lockout.

It seems like there are lots of cables with the extra two for the remote lockout.

Here is a picture of Pat and Gwen, with their prizes for winning the Filthy 50 gravel race last weekend. Pretty great prizes, meat.

Here is a picture of Pat and Gwen, with their prizes for winning the Filthy 50 gravel race last weekend. Pretty great prizes, meat.







20 thoughts on “New Bike – First Ride

  1. flicksta

    I love building bikes, and am pretty constantly cycling through frames and components. There is always something new I’ve never done before. My latest was doing both Di2 and a press-fit BB86. The Di2 was a bit daunting, really didn’t want to bugger it up, but it was fine in the end.

    Always new tools to buy as well.

  2. Dave Ferris

    Congrats on the new Eriksen/ Bingham FS . Would love to have one of those ! At 62, my arthritic neck starts to bother me after about 90 minutes on our rocky, rutted and dry trails/fireroads here in LA from the extended drought. I just got a new Steve Potts (non-rigid) 29er last year and love it. I mainly ride the Verdugos by my house in Glendale, but once in awhile I venture out to the Santa Monicas. The FS would be great out there as things have gotten a lot more crunchy , again from the drought and high MB traffic , especially on the weekends. If you are ever here for an extended period of time and want to explore the Verdugos, please get in touch. It’s mainly fire roads with a steep 3 mile climb and then flattens out in places. I’d be lucky to stay a half a mile behind you though…. 🙂 Best and enjoy your time in LA.

  3. Krakatoa East of Java

    Wow, that is one convoluted mess-o-cables up there on the front end of the bike. Good luck putting that sucker on an airplane without major reconstructive surgery afterward.

  4. Stoney

    I agree that your handlebars need some simplification. Too much stuff loaded on them makes them ugly. Bicycles should be simple and slick…not a convoluted mess.

  5. Larry T.

    Say hello for me to the SBW guys (oh, how patient they were teaching me how to properly ride a bike back-in-the-day)
    as well as ol’ Ed Bauman when you’re out there.
    Had to laugh at the Donut Ride video, some things never change, but so far at least Trump doesn’t make you buy a ticket to ride around his PV peninsula, so there’s that. I’ll make a trip out that way in January – which of the 4 Southern California seasons will I encounter? Fire, Flood, Earthquake or Riot?

  6. Krakatoa East of Java

    I got beaten in the 84 districts by a SBW junior (in the first edition of the Boulevard RR). David Alpert. I wonder what he’s up to now.

  7. Trevor

    In WordPress you can have users whose email is not recognized need to get their posts accepted before being posted.

  8. channel_zero

    the pivot is “hiding” If you dig around Steve’s site, you’ll find the frame clamped into a stand with the impressive one-piece pivot to which the chainstays are joined.

  9. Chris Froome

    Hey Cycling Fans and Mr. Tilford, Chris Froome here, unrepentant and ready to win several more Tours de France- and I’m prepared to bring my cat Coco on the podium next time!!!! Hey I like a new bike as much as anyone- I know this because I get several of them each week from Team Sky! I work on them in my garage and they are really quite carbon. I ride them with suplesse and fluidity but the carbon doesn’t flex right, causing me to tense up my elbows a bit. So I keep asking for better new test bikes each week, and did you know you could discover by studying my considerable web presence that I can make a carbon patch out of Kenyan soil if it’s quite infiltrated with hippo dung? I learned this coming up from nothing to being the TdF champion and Spokesman I’ve become! I guess you don’t know from CF! (that’s C-hris F-roome). But I can’t dwell on the inevitable questions about our pro bikes any more than I can answer critics who question my performance and power numbers! However, just visit ChristopherFroome@Twitter to find out more about the man I am… Who I have become! I am not just the best cyclist in the world, I’m focused on saving Chinchilla Persian Cats in the middle east right now because I heard (Sir David told me something in the cab) that there is quite a crisis with regard to persians leaving the country or entering it just like the hippos leaving Kenya. But I could be confusing this with my dream to save the hippos. I know Lance was an awesome spokesman for cancer- but I think hippos needed a closer look which is why I am now Spokesman for UnitedWorldWildlifeFoundationForHippos or In case you can’t count, I’ve won 2 tours de france and I have causes regarding domesticated animals (Chinchilla Persian Cat’s named Coco, and ALL LIKE HER) as well as wild animals (Hippos in Africa!) They tell me not to say this, but I’ve always thought my membership in the British Society of Small Airplane and Glider Pilots was quite a bit more important with nothing at all to say about my position in the cockpit- just climbing thermals and doing tricks- free to spend my winnings doing something important! To learn more about how I balance my elite hobbies and my completely banal and obscure pet causes, look for a sequel to my autobiography, The Climb. My first best seller ingeniously plays on the metaphor of climbing by telling how I climb from rags to riches, a hometown White boy in Africa, makes it all the way to the Champs as a millionaire, by climbing so well in the mountains on my carbon bikes! My Sequel, is more a novella or short story that tells the story of me climbing the (very short) ladder to the top bunk of the Team Sky Krazy Kustom Motor Home only to find Richie Porte already claiming dibs on top bunk having absconded with my favorite Sky Flannel Sheets ™. It wasn’t going to get published because I guess no one but me cared, until I wrote in the part about him also getting a top bunk blood transfusion. Relax haters- this wasn’t for performance enhancing or “doping,” instead Richie was preparing to audition for a minor role in the film “The Program.” To wrap up this post, before my “publicist,” who designed the “CF” trademark initials on my instagram feed (he charges double for Coco’s site! because he’s “a dog man,”) stops me from posting here again, I just want to close with my favorite quote, “How people treat dopers is their karma, how you respond is yours.”


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