I’m finally giving this a shot:
Monday evening I installed my rigid fork again on the single speed, and this time I plan on keeping it there for a while. It didn’t work out so well before, but that’s because I didn’t really give it a chance. I had a tire on the front that didn’t do well with lower pressures, but I may have solved that issue by putting on a Maxxis Ardent. From what I hear, it’s the go to tire for rigid setups.
It’s a big, beefy tire, and I couldn’t wait to try it out. It just so happens that last night was our weekly night ride so I brought it along for some testing. I didn’t get to ride right away because when I got there I realized that I didn’t bring all the lights with me (required for night riding, you know.) So, I split up the lights I had between Lunchbox and Little Miss Sunshine, left them with the group, and made the trek back to my house to get the rest of my forgotten night riding accessories.
When I got back, the group had just finished one lap. I was ready to ride, and people were laughing about the pain I was gonna feel without any suspension. I thought it was funny, especially since Good Guy Greg was also running a rigid fork. He didn’t’ seem to mind it, but’s also running a carbon fork. Mine isn’t so fancy.
I took off in the intermediate group, riding the trail backwards. It was a little odd a first, because I felt every single bump. It threw me off course quite a bit until I got the hang of it. I don’t remember where I had the tire pressure, but I ended up taking a bit of air out when we stopped. That seemed to to do the trick, because the rest of the ride was pretty awesome. I had more control, and I could actually feel everything that the bike was doing underneath me. I made “on the fly” adjustments really easy, and I felt faster because of it.
It even felt great on rocky, rooty downhills.
I dig it.
My wrists and hands were a little sore, but I’ll get used to that. Will I convert my other bike to rigid? Hell no. I do like having suspension, and this little test ride was to see if I could handle the bike enough to be ready to race it this weekend. I think it will be fun. Who knows, maybe I’ll keep the single speed setup without suspension.
Hey, it could happen.
In other news, I hit the beer jackpot yesterday before the ride (probably explains why I forgot the lights for my night ride.) I found a local spot close to the house that has every kind of beer I could imagine (I can imagine a lot of beer though.) More about that at a later date, but I thought I should at least share my find here.
That will dull the pain for a little while.
Awesome! You'll love the rigid fork -- much better for climbing, and makes you a stronger rider through the rough stuff because it teaches you to relax your upper body (practice loose arms -- that's where your suspension will come from from now on!)
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