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A storry about Tikki ....


NotSoBigBen
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So some may remember that a few months ago I tried out a 29r at Rievlei zoo farm. So yip I wasn't a 'hater' as WeedMod called me just cause I hadn't tried it or couldn't afford one .....

 

The Rietvlei XC course has a bit of everything so I guess it was a pretty balanced test. The bike I used was a GT something or other.

 

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My comments at the time were:-

 

1) Turns slower than my IT techs get through their daily tasks at work

 

2) A dog to get going after tight singletrack turns

 

3) Felt like I was sitting 'on top of it'

 

In short I just didn't like it, a comment or 2 though. The bike was a bit big for me and the brakes were the 'wrong' way round, no the front does not belong on the right doesn't matter what you motorbikers think! Nearly bliksemed over the bars a couple of times. What I did say was that I felt it 'rolled' a bit easier over the rocky sections

 

SO NOW FAST FORWARD a few months ...... due to a generous gift from Dangerous Dan, my big boet and best mate/Epic partner I was in possession of a 29r fork and a set of wheels! By spending a bit of money (2300 for a Twenty Nine Lite 1800D Merida frame) and moving the groupset from one of my training bikes I too could own a 'niner'!

 

After 1 or 2 'small' glitches I have ended up with this 'monster' since named TIKKI after the circus clown of my youth.

 

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I don't have a lot of money invested in the bike and I do own at least 2 other much better specced and lighter bikes so do not have to justify my purchase to anyone by being 'biased' towards this new 'marketing trick' as I too have called it.

 

Unfortunately it had a rather 'difficult' maiden voyage at the awareness ride this passed Saturday unrelated to the frame size!

 

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The RD I used had seen better days and the upper pulley wheel jumped ship along the way. Luckily Troy, Anton and Dennis stopped and assisted to get her mobile again at least to get back. It has since been replaced with a good one.

 

After spending some time and ensuring all the little niggles were sorted I have now done a 'shake' down ride at Rietvlei on Monday and then a go as fast as you can ride yesterday.

 

Now my own frank and 'less' biased view of the circus trick bike!

 

As per my Fb/Twitter status page - Wow? Not really. Disappointed? No. Pleasantly surprised? Hell yeah!

 

Now this may be influenced by any of the following factors, the right size bike set up correctly, brakes the RIGHT way round and maybe it does have different geometry to the GT I tested .....

 

It definitely handled better than I can remember at my test ride and in fact I doubt I was any slower through the single track than I normally would be (those who have been there will know that Wendell likes to make those strange tight corners with trees and stuff). As I noted then it definitely rolled better over the rocky stuff and I noticed this time that it was a bit easier to get up those short steep things taken at slow speed as the front wheel didn't seem to have so much of a life of it's own!

 

Having said that it is still a dog to get going out of tight corners and slow areas of the course and I definitely noticed the difference in gearing. I guess that could be taken care of with a 'bigger' rear cluster or with some HTFU (I choose the latter at this time!)

 

Will I be riding this bike? Hell yeah it was a hoot to ride but no I will not be abandoning my 'little' wheelers at all. Over the next few weeks hopefully I will also get in some long rides and comment more.

 

Was I faster, a better rider or was my heart rate lower for the same speed than on my other bikes? Hell I have no idea but really don't care, I just had a lot of fun out on it!

 

Happy trails everyone!

 

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Kinda makes one think about that "I will never.............." saying ;)

I do have proof that a Niner is faster than Tiki.

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Kinda makes one think about that "I will never.............." saying ;)

I do have proof that a Niner is faster than Tiki.

 

And that with only 1 gear :( - but no my hair didn't grow back as some promised when I got a 29r :angry:

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BigBen - great story. Just goes to show how important bike fit is.

 

Quick piece of advice - pop one gear up as you enter a tighish corner on the 29er. When I first got my 29er years ago I found myself continuously bogged down getting out of corners and the "one gear up" thing really helped.

 

All the best with the big wheels - everyone tells me 3" bigger is always better :lol:

 

 

Edit: Eldrons other advice - push your seat forwards or buy a zero setback seat pillar. It might be a personal thing but control seems better and I can "lay down the power" better when my seat is further forward (relative to my 26er set up).

Edited by Eldron
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And that with only 1 gear :( - but no my hair didn't grow back as some promised when I got a 29r :angry:

 

Now, where is that picture? :unsure:

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BigBen - great story. Just goes to show how important bike fit is.

 

Quick piece of advice - pop one gear up as you enter a tighish corner on the 29er. When I first got my 29er years ago I found myself continuously bogged down getting out of corners and the "one gear up" thing really helped.

 

All the best with the big wheels - everyone tells me 3" bigger is always better :lol:

 

 

Edit: Eldrons other advice - push your seat forwards or buy a zero setback seat pillar. It might be a personal thing but control seems better and I can "lay down the power" better when my seat is further forward (relative to my 26er set up).

 

Thanks for the tips mate! Will focus on the 1 gear up thing a bit, sounds logical ..... after that I will try the seat forward option - don't want to confuse mself too much for now :blush:

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was searching for the 'like' buttoe and couldn't find it.

 

great feedback ... and pictures :)

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I remember Tiki :D He was awesome. I remember him visiting with his wife and daughter. I was about as tall as him back then. My dad recently told me some great stories about Tiki when he was working for my grandfather on the Circus. His great foresight for coming up with very entertaining shows.

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