Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Raleigh XXIX in review

So I have spent a great deal of time on this bike since I bought it for a mere 350$ at a bike shop in Farmington. I had been hearing non stop things about people that were enjoying the 29 inch wheels on the trails. They say how fast the wheels carry and how the big wheels roll over obstacles with ease. I was also seeing a lot of people doing it a simplistic way with no suspension and no gears! This was something that had intrigued me, not familiar with either of those two things, I took a bit of a blind leap into the 29er world. I began to search for affordable rigs that was in my price range. I did not have any money so I made the tough decision that I would sell my high end free ride bike for way less than what it was worth so I can get a bike with no shocks, no gears and no idea the fun that I was about to have! I took a test drive over at tolland bike shop on a fugly green Raleigh XXIX. It felt great but looked terrible and was a size smaller than I wanted. I still considered purchasing the bike which was at 750$ which I knew had some wiggle room on it. Thank goodness I started calling around looking for my criteria and eventually lead me to a 2007 red medium rigid SS Raleigh XXIX at central wheel in farmington! It had been sitting in a showroom for somewhere around 3 or so years and I cannot believe no one had bought it but it was there waiting for me all this time and the bike chose me! I put the cash together and down to the bike shop I went to bring home my new proud ride. I was not able to take the bike out that day but I had plans to ride the next day at Penwood over in Simsbury. I was really really excited for the ride and could hardly wait, and that day finally soon came. So I made my way to Penwood and onto the dirt i went, it was tough going, I was wobbly and my legs were not fairing the single speed so well and things just weren't coming together. I was wondering the decision I had made and questioned if this was going to be a good fit for me after a sketchy first ride. So a second ride was planned and things took a little turn for the better and by the third ride I was hooked. The wheels did turn very fast and rolling over things might have been slightly better, and having no suspension did not bother me one bit, it made things very nimble and in control. More and more rides and my other all mountain bike collected more dust, I was riding the 29er and loving the crap out of it! I have been riding it now for about a full season and I can tell you I could not be happier! I have had to replace the seat post and headset due to wear but other than that the bike has been rock solid. Yea if money was not an object I might have built a Niner One with some snazzy wheels and some over priced chris king gear like all the other shmucks but I am very humble on my Raleigh. This bike is an incredible buy and I would recommend it to anyone and I continue to ride the crap out of it and look forward to our future. So with a tear shed let there be pictures!

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