Thursday, April 9, 2009

State of the SS

Well, after I finished messing around with the CDW packs on the Lev, I took a look at the results of the crash on the SS Monkey. The frame seems untouched as I would expect although the travel indicating zip tie on the RST M29 fork was ALL the way at the top of the stanchion tube. I really smacked that rut hard. The fork saved the front rim, but the rear rim was pretty tweaked. I threw it into the Park truing stand and was pretty sure that I could get it straight as far as run out, but spoke tension was way off with all the compensation. Worse than this are the dents in the wall of the rim. For a rim brake, this is death unless you like the 'thump-thump-thump' every time the brake pad runs by that dent. I attempted the tried and true method of blocks of wood and hammers to push out the dents, but I was only mildly successful. So, I can use this wheel with a disc brake but not a rim brake and even then the wheel will be not near as strong as it once was due to the uneven tension. Oh well.

There is a cascade effect here. If I rebuild the wheel with the same rim to keep rim brakes, I will spend a fair amount of money to keep old technology in place. V brakes are fine, but not anywhere near what a good hydro disc is. I used them since I had them, the KM frame accepts them, and the used wheels I found were V brake capable. It was expedient at the time of the KM build, but to spend more money to stay that way makes no sense to me.

So that means looking at new rims. Tubeless is soooo cool and I am spoiled by the Stan's Flow rims on the Lev. So, I would choose Flows for the hoops and I could either reuse the adequate DT Swiss Onyx hubs (equivalent to a XT level hub IMO), look for some simple hubs to replace them, maybe like these in a QR configuration, or look for a good deal on nicer stuff either used or whatever.

New wheels means disc brakes.

But, the KM is not that user friendly to disc brakes due to the track type rear wheel setup. It makes it a pain to get the wheel in and out without dinking around with the rear caliper. Not a big deal, but there are other things I am not so crazy about the KM. It is kinda short feeling for a larger frame. I like rangy TT lengths and the 24.25" eff TT is kinda short for me. It is heavy. Duh. It actually pedals well enough, but you sure don't feel it jumping up and springing ahead when you pedal. Hey, what do ya want for the $ it costs? It is a cheap, strong, versatile frame, but she ain't no sprinter. It is also not that good looking to my eye. I am not a fan of the bent seat tube, high and level TT look. To my eye, it looks scrunched up. I also want to get away from all the non-SS cable stops, rear der hanger, and canti posts. Clutter.

The cascade effect. One thing leads to another and as long as the bike was just rolling along, it was good enough. Now it has stopped rolling. Good time for a change.

I am looking at a new frame and, if you follow my blog much, you know I have been thinking about SS specific qualities in a frame that are a bit unique as far as how the bike needs to perform. It has led me to the precipice of a buying decision that surprises even me. I will let that Canadian cat out of its bag when things are in place.

For now, the KM will sit awaiting its fate and I will ride the geared bike for a while. I miss the SS, but until my wrist heals, I cannot stand and pull on the bars anyway. Sea Otter is coming up soon and I will blend a family vacation into a day spent among the brethren celebrating all things bike. After that, who knows where that cascade will carry me?


Enel said...

Interested to see what frame you get. Blackbuck or Qball tops on my list.

KM with rear disc sucks.

grannygear said...

I really like the Blackbuck but the one size fits all...does not fit me.

Q Ball, short stays, yes? Hmmm...not so sure about that frame. I seem to remember limited tire clearance on that one...maybe wrong.

Hey, who knows what I will end up with?