The Bike

I stopped last time at a theft, another new bike, and the challenge for 2017. So let’s start this one with a theft.

I’m sure others are familiar with the story. Up in the morning, get ready for a ride, head out to the shed or garage, something’s not quite right but nothing’s obviously wrong either, open the door. It hits you. The emptiness. The space where there shouldn’t be one. A pause.

It drags.

The empty space. The debris that was once a lock. Broken pieces of a saw. One of your bikes is missing. The mountain bike is gone.

I walked into the gloom of the garage resisting the urge to pick things up and tidy them away. I count the other bikes. The road bike is still bolted onto the turbo trainer, my wife’s two bikes are still there. It’s just my mountain bike that’s been taken, I suppose that’s a good thing. I head back up to the flat and tell my wife what’s happened. A call to the police to register the theft and investigator is in the area so he’ll drop by in the next hour.

The investigator comes and tells me that bike has been taken, whoever did it was wearing gloves, and it’s unlikely the bike will be found.

I started the process with the insurance company and they agreed to pay out the covered amount without a grumble. While I’m waiting for the cheque I get started on planning a replacement. My criteria was something low maintenance, so singlespeed, rigid, and ideally a 29er. A cheap, singlespeed cross country type of bike? The best place to start was On One. This happened around the time that On One announced they were going to stop production of the Scandal, so I grabbed the chance in one of their endless sales and picked up a Scandal 29er, V2, with a set of slot dropouts included for not much over £100.

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I hunted around and the frame was joined by a pair of On One carbon forks, Charge Saucer wheels, Deore cranks and brakes, Gusset SS kit, KMC chain, and RaceFace bars, stem, and seat post. Final bits were a pair of Continental Mountain Kings, some Gusset grips, and a Charge Spoon saddle.


After the first ride

It took a few rides and playing around with different length stems to get everything set up just right, but when it was, I was sold on SS. The simplicity was exactly what I was looking for and I wasn’t any slower than I was on the previous bike.

I’ll do more detailed posts on the bike as things get swapped out and changed for 2017’s challenge, the French Divide (but I’ll say more about that in the next post).


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