Monday, March 2, 2009

It's here!

My new bike is here!
To bring everyone (no one is reading this so this is a waste of time, but I'll go through the motions...) up to speed: I bought a great 58" Torelli Countach frame and fork on ebay. Got an amazing deal. The frame is a few years old but it's still brand new. It even had the tags still on it. I took the bike to a shop that is local to where I work and they did an AMAZING job putting it together.

When I went to the shop they immediately understood my goals with this bike. A comfortable, durable, easy to maintain, classic looking bike. I wasn't going to make a decision on a part because of the weight. So I have very very limited amounts of carbon fiber, just some on the wheel hubs and some on the real derailleur. The shop did a great job suggesting and finding parts that kept the bike very classic looking. I never had to remind them of my goals, they listened and took off running with it.

So I picked up the bike last Thursday and rode it on my Saturday ride with a friend into some foothills. I tried to keep the ride to about 25 miles as I was un-familiar with the bike and didn't know how much adjusting I would need to do. This turned out not to be a problem at all. I didn't make a single adjustment to the bike. The fit that the shop did on the bike was perfect. I have never been more comfortable and confident on a bike.

My old Raleigh was size "large" which isn't very helpful when you're trying to figure out bike sizing. I had measured my inseam numerous times and did some formulas and came away with my ideal bike frame size is a 58. I couldn't imagine my Raleigh was a 56 so I assumed it was a 58 and I must have some odd body (to steal from Vonnegut, my body looks like a broken kite) and the new bike was going to be a bit uncomfortable too. This was wrong and it was quickly obvious! I used my old saddle and seat post on the new bike and the saddle had to be lowered to the "max" line where before it was a couple inches out. Then when I tried to fix my pump to the crossbar it didn't fit, it wasn't long enough! My old bike was a 56! And let me tell you, a 58 is perfect for me. Like said earlier, I've never been more comfortable.

Out on the road the bike was a rocket in the flats. The steel frame of the Torelli felt like a ghost on the road. The Zipp wheels rolled so smooth it was like getting an extra gear. The Campagnolo Centaur group was responsive and shifted sharply. The brakes were phenomenal. I never knew how shitty my old brakes were. Now that I see what nice gears and brakes are like, I can see that old bike was downright dangerous.

A few things I noticed on the ride that I loved were: On a downhill I passed my friend without pedaling. My bike just rolled faster. On a flat where we raced a bit, I just got in the drops, stuck my chin out, felt my body get low and my abs lock in and it was like a turbo boost. I've never been able to get that kind of power when pedaling hard in the drops. I guess not being folded up like cheap lawnchair makes a difference. Finally, the last thing I noticed was that the calculations we did in the shop, to pick the right gearing ratios to make my move from a triple to a compact double, were perfect. I had enough gear to do everything I wanted to. Just nailed it. It was amazing.

So now I'm waiting for the time change and the return to bike to work. I can't wait to get some long rides in on this bike without being run over in the dark!


Da Robot said...

PICTURES?!?!?!? How can you wax rhapsodic over a new bike and not post a picture? WTF?

Geisterbahnbesitzer said...

PICS, or it didn´t happen.