Showing posts with label fun. Show all posts
Showing posts with label fun. Show all posts

Thursday, 4 April 2013

SURLY Karate Monkey 29er; Return of Monkey...


I sold my Surly Karate Monkey 29er last summer to friend Colin to fund  a Salsa Fargo build.
It was an itch i had to scratch and you can read and see it Here...

As time went on i started to miss the old Monkey for hacking about the local trails,
And also missed the magic carpet road ride of  the old Dawes Super Galaxy i also sold to fund the Fargo,

Over time found i found the Fargo to be a well made frame set and as the Internet will tell you is capable of being loaded up and taken off on far flung adventures over any type of road surface...

However it just did not do anything for me, the ride to work was harsh, and the frame was lifeless, then when off road it was terrible and uncomfortable, the rear end of the frame is designed to be loaded up and still handle ok off road, i just got sore all over riding it around local trails, and it is far too heavy for the road compared to my old tourer which flew along the road,
The drop bar thing off road i just did not get at all, you cannot throw a bike about and weight the pedals on corners, hop and skip along a nice trail, and use trials skills and lever on the bars over tricky sections etc...

It was just lifeless...and that was a shame as i was really excited about the drop bar concept of this bike with all the reviews i had read on the Internet,
but it was just dead to ride... lifeless...

There i said it and just upset the world of happy Fargo owners!.  I can only liken it to the On One 456 frame set i had which was dead and lifeless and after riding i would hang up and just walk away from uninspired by the ride... i do not know anyone else who has owned a Fargo and said this, so it must be a great bike, but for me it just did not tick the boxes, but it was an itch i had to scratch...

I want a bicycle that is fun to cycle, fun to ride to work or home after, fun to ride on the coastline here in East Lothian, or fun to ride along the many amazing trails we have here...thing with owning a Fargo was i will never go on overland expeditions, i cannot afford to!, and i have no desire to be battered by a harsh frame off road,
I want to have fun when i cycle...

Fun...

So the frameset was sold and the plan was to return to riding an old friend...

Enter the Monkey...

Not my old Karate Monkey but another, i got the chance to buy the UK Surly importer ISON`s Show Bike frame set from last year and grabbed the chance, i have to thank Pat at ISON for the offer to buy it and the fair price asked and did not hang about getting the bike built up, i used up some old parts along with wheels and stuff from the Fargo...

What i did was to sort my only complaint about the last Karate Monkey i had, and that was a sometimes twitchy front end that had tucked in a couple of time on the trail,
so i fitted a  Works Components 1 degree off set headset, which slackened the fork angle to 20.5"


With the fork angle now the same as my Surly Pugsley, and with 170mm lenght cranks to spin up to speed quick, and wide 750mm bars (off the Moonlander) it has made the bike a wicked fun 29er trail bike,
This bike just asks to be ridden fast and thrown around on the trail,


Slacker head angle...


Plain build using what was around spare in the Man Cave, Fargo chain set, Moonlander Deore mech...


Wide bars, LX shifters, unknown brand levers, Moonlanders grips...


BB7 road brakes from Fargo, work fine with in line cable adjusters and MTB levers...


JANDD frame bage with pump,tube, tools, still a reasonably light build...


The newer design Karate Monkey frame definitely feels more springy and so lively than my red frame, the chain stays can be flexed by pushing on the pedal on one side, it gives a real comfortable ride and i have been out every afternoon this week after work for an hour or two blasting about, and i have missed this type of riding on my local trails, i love my 2 fat bikes but i have room for a bike like this...

A typical mid week ride which i have missed doing...
2 hour evening cycle on local Garleton Hills...















Yes it does...


Always fun building another bike up, and the first shakedown ride, this is what i mean by a bike that is fun to ride...

Song is the hidden track `Rubicon` on Kasabian`s 1st album...









Friday, 1 March 2013

A week of high pressure clear coastal weather...


Been high pressure weather giving clears skies here on the East Lothian coast this week...

We have had amazing sunrises through early morning mist,
Been cold and frosty but dry under foot,
Stunning blue skies during the day and with little wind often a flat calm sea with some amazing reflective sunsets,
Full moon risings too over the Lammermuir Hills!,
A few pics while out and about...

Sunrise on the commute to Whitekirk...





Sunrise over Dunbar, from Whitekirk Hill...



Sunset, North Berwick West Beach ...


Sunset, Fidra Island, from Point Garry...


Sunset, West Bay, North Berwick...



Sunset, St Andrews Cross, North Berwick...


Late afternoon sun, North Berwick West beach...


Late afternoon sun, North Berwick harbour...


Late afternoon sun, North Berwick East beach...




Sunset, The Bridge, Aberlady Nature Reserve...


Sunset, Across Aberlady Bay to Kilspindie...


Sunset, Across Gosford Bay to Cockenzie, and sunset over Arther's Seat, Edinburgh...


 So it is typical that the day i plan a ride straight from work on my Surly Pugsley to the coast on my local patch at Tyninghame was the only evening in a week and a half it would cloud over!,
Still never mind, i planned to do some film of the late evening light and sunset but that was not going to happen so instead i did some film through `Links Wood` to `Mosspoin`t and then around the shoreline of `Fir Links Wood`,  then along some of the `Secret Trail`  and also below it along the 4pm high line rocks to Peffersands.

Tyninghame Links Car Park...


These woods were once walked by the famous naturalist John Muir as a boy before his family moved to America.
Many of the ancient Oak and Beech standing today would have been here in Muir`s time...

Tyninghame`s  Deciduous woods are devoid of leaves at this time of year, with spring on the way the woods will soon be under a canopy of leaves.

How many trees leaves do you know?





Click on pics to enlarge to read...



This old Beech has called it a day, would make brilliant fire wood!...



High tide and the water in the Tyne Estuary was flat..



The flat light played havoc with the camera that could not tell the change from sea to cloud and refused to focus often.
Then the cloud cleared a bit over head as i reached Ravensheugh and the light took on that magical shine on the water and wet sand, so i swapped to the compact camera, hence why you start to hear decent sound and the waves breaking on the shoreline...


Film,
Click on the cog icon to view in HD
Song is `Tower Seven` by a favourite band `Thiervery Corporation`...