Saturday, May 21, 2022
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Clearance Is Granted – Bike Snob NYC


It’s been slightly over six months since I put collectively my Platypus:

The animal for which this bike is called seems to be like God put it collectively utilizing a bunch of spare elements, and in that spirit I too used as a lot of my very own spare elements as I moderately might. For probably the most half, I’ve been fairly happy, although lately I’ve begun to confess to myself the bike might use a bit extra tire quantity. I’d been utilizing the Bruce Gordon Rock n’ Highway tires since I already had them and their all-around nature appeared to go well with the bike. Nonetheless, they’re simply slender sufficient that you simply’ve bought to be extra-attentive on trails to keep away from roots and rocks and different issues which may trigger pinch flats, and what the hell’s the purpose of using a luxurious bike like this should you’ve bought to be attentive? (And don’t inform me to go tubeless. Tubeless is nice, my mountain bikes are arrange that means, however I’m not going tubeless on a Platypus, I’m simply not.) Additionally, I figured I might use a couple of further millimeters of pedal clearance after my hair-raising flip-flop incident.

Rock n’ Highway tires are ostensibly 43mm vast, which is about 1.7 American Freedom Size Models (AFLUs). In the meantime, Rivendell says the Platypus will settle for tires as much as 2.2 AFLUs, which meant I used to be grossly underutilizing its capaciousness. (That’s pretentious for “capability.”) Because it occurs, some years again I purchased a number of 29-inch mountain bike tires as a result of a web based retailer was promoting them for like $4 apiece (I don’t care how you are feeling about on-line retailers, while you see brand-name tires on sale for $4 every you purchase them), and I nonetheless had an unused pair. So, within the spirit of utilizing stuff I have already got, I put them on the ‘Pus:

I preferred them immediately. For one factor, the paths are carpeted with leaves at the moment of 12 months, they usually’re voluminous sufficient that I don’t have to fret an excessive amount of about what is likely to be lurking beneath them ready to destroy my internal tube:

Not all path hazards are as apparent as this one:

The additionally made the bike typically smoother, grippier, and extra sure-footed on filth, as you’d count on a bigger, knobbier tire, which complemented the general nature of the bike. And whereas it shouldn’t matter, the truth that they stuffed out the body slightly extra made the bike look higher, at the least to me:

Plus, there’s one thing about mountain bike tires on silver rims that appeals to my classical sensibilities:

I ought to add that I’d by no means deployed this pair of tires because the different set I’d tried turned out to be poorly suited to mountain biking round these elements. The middle part is very vulnerable to slippage while you’re attempting to scurry up some incline on a singlespeed, and if it’s moist overlook about it:

Nonetheless, for the Platypus, which is able to see solely the mildest type of off-roading, they’re an excellent match. My solely criticism was that they had been slightly sluggish on pavement. I suppose the right spare-no-expense alternative for this bike could be one thing like this from designer tire pusher Jan Heine:

Not solely is it imagined to roll effectively on pavement, however it’s additionally noise-cancelling!

The Fleecer Ridge grips like a knobby when situations get robust. On pavement, it rolls like a slick tire because of its massive and strategically positioned knobs that don’t squirm and at all times put the identical quantity of rubber on the highway. The Fleecer Ridge is the world’s first bicycle tire with noise cancellation: The staggered tread blocks create overlapping noise frequencies that partially cancel one another. This function is so revolutionary that we’ve patented it. Due to the superior supplies utilized in its development, the Fleecer Ridge is without doubt one of the lightest tires in its class.

I resent Jan Heine as a result of I don’t wish to be the type of one who buys patented noise-cancelling tires, however I resent myself extra as a result of clearly I’ve changed into precisely the type of one who buys patented noise-cancelling tires.

However sufficient about all that, I do know you’re right here for one factor and one factor solely, and that’s filthy tire clearance porn. These tires are nominally 2.1s (I think they’re narrower than that) and as you’ll be able to see there’s loads of room left on the fork crown:

Identical goes for the chainstays:

And the seatstays:

In reality I don’t suppose you’d have any downside getting a set of fenders in there, apart from the truth that it’s morally flawed to make use of fenders with mountain bike tires.

Certainly, the one factor even approaching a difficulty was that the tires jacked the bike up simply sufficient that it leaned over slightly too far after I deployed the kickstand. Fortuitously, the kickstand on my different Rivendell (I by no means thought I’d be typing the phrases “my different Rivendell,” I’ve actually arrived) has at all times been only a tiny bit too lengthy, however not fairly lengthy sufficient for me to undergo the difficulty of chopping it. So I switched them, and now they’re each good:

Anyway, all of this proves the outdated adage I simply made up:

“If in case you have the clearance, then use it.”

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