Friday, May 4, 2012

It's a rental

I am going to be walking the fine edge of sacrilege for some of my readers in this post. So if the words "carbon  fiber"  offend you, you may want to log off now. (I am talking to you JRuss and Steve G.)

I was bumping around the newest bike shop in town, Bike Fix over in Washington. Ian, the owner is also a SS guy and his personal sled is a Niner Air 9 Carbon. As I was admiring the bike, I jokingly asked if I could borrow it for a day. To my surprise he said yes, I must have a trustworthy visage.

This bike is Carbon Fiber everything, stem, bars, wheelset, frame, seat post, fork, everything, and it weighs a mind blowing 18lbs.
I took it out to Navajo for a run up Rattlesnake and down Stucki.

I wanted to, and was prepared to hate this bike.  I could not.  Uphill this ma'sheen is an absolute rocket and comfy to boot. Niner's geometry is spot on and it soaked up the bumps like a champ while remaining stiff under power.
I had done 42 road miles the day before and was a little toasted but that did not stop me from laying down my fastest time form the TH to the top of Rattlesnake and I didn't feel like I was pushing it.

While the climbing was a dream the descent was a horse of a different color. The ride quality suffered when I went north of 15 mph, and through the chop it was like riding a jack hammer. The bike is so light that it was difficult to hold a line, I was tossed around and felt like I had to fight the bugger through all the chunk. If I had more time with the bike I think you could get used to it's trail manners but my hands were achy by the bottom. With a squishy fork this bike could be the cats pajamas. 

But will I be spending my hard earned cash on the  Did I have fun and wanted to keep it another day.......yes. 

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