Per the annual iBOB tradition, here’s my list of stuff I tried and liked during 2011.
- Warren Zevon. OK, not really. I’ve been a fan for years and years, but was only familiar with the regular radio stuff. Over the last year I really dug in and digested everything I could get my hands on. Good stuff. Enjoy yer sammiches, folks.
- Road bikes. I snagged a too big Peloton frame a few years ago and a Pacer last year, but only managed to build them up this year. Lightweight tubes are nice. Climbing in high gears is fun and something I never could do well on the MTBs and the Trucker. Road bikes are super fun! But the harsh ride of skinny tires combined with my fat butt led me to –
- 650b. I’m all in on this one, so even if I didn’t like it I wouldn’t admit it. Bought the wheels, tried converting two old bikes, bought a 650b-specific bike. I’m currently running Col de la Vie tires, but hope to try some Hetres or Pari-Motos soon.
- Rawland rSogn. This is my 650b all-rounder. It’s a low-trail bike with clearance for 9.00/28/5-15 dragster tires. Well, maybe not quite that wide, but definitely the fattest 650b tires currently available. The rSogn was intended to replace both the Trucker and the road bike, and it looks like it will do just that quite nicely. The only problem with the rSogn is that it has braze-ons all over the place and I’m not sure what to attach to them. I’m paranoid about stuff like that.
- Bontrager Ion 2 headlight. This is a AAA clip-on light which I purchased to replace a water-logged EL520. It’s a surprisingly good light and I’ve recommended it to several people. It has 3 modes – high, low and seizure. The high beam is suitable for city streets and is a good “be seen” light for going slow on unlighted roads. The low beam is good for when you don’t have any spare batteries and you’re two hours from home. The flash mode is good for clicking past when you need to shut off the light. Battery life is better than expected. Overall, it’s a pretty good inexpensive battery light.
…and didn’t. No “tried and liked” list is complete without the equally opposite.
- Fat bikes. Now, to be completely honest, I’m not one to blindly follow the crowd. (But Sloth, fat bikes are a niche product!) The evil LBS had one in stock. I tried real hard to find the coolio in it, but all I could muster was a sigh and a head shake. I know all the other bike bloggers are wetting their pants over the new Pugluklanders, and I’ll probably rub some of them the wrong way, but as best I can tell fat bikes are kinda like Kim Kardashian.