Sunday, October 26, 2008

Test Ride notes

I made it down to Angle Lake Cyclery on Friday to test ride some Bacchetta recumbents. My goals were to test ride the Giro 20TT, the Corsa-24 and the regular Corsa. When I got there Dale told me he sold the Giro 20TT on Thursday to a Canadian who really needed it right now! No worries, he had a Corsa-24 built up and ready for a go.

The first thing I noticed about the Corsa-24 is that my feet were flat on the ground. The bike seemed a little small to me in that regard but the pedal position was perfect. I took it out for a ride, Kristin captured the test rides in the slideshow above. The aero bars on the Corsa-24 were a bit tight. My legs are beefy and wide, the bar hit my legs when turning even small angles. Dale added a few spacers and moved the bar up and also changed the angle. It worked but I was definitely considering a different bar.

The ride was great, stable at low speeds, solid power transfer, light, responsive, a great bike. I rode it up and down the street enjoying every second. I headed back thinking that if the Corsa-24 was this easy, what about the regular Corsa in a medium frame. So I asked Dale about the Corsa with the 650c rims. He had a Corsa S/S there in medium so I took it out next. At this point, Dale had more people in the shop so it wasn't adjusted as much for me, it also had a recurve seat on it, which wasn't what I wanted. I gave it a spin though and really loved it.

After I came back Dale and I chatted a bit about options and what modifications he could do and what would be a good idea. I asked about the a Dynohub for lighting and he said it would be no problem and he has the Schmidt Hub in stock. He also said that he has a really nice fender solution for the Corsa. That excited me as I thought I was going to have to use SKS race blades for fenders, the opportunity for real fenders sounds great for someone in the Pac NW. We also chatted about Q-Rings. I told Dale I needed to chat with Kristin and work out the finances but I would be giving him a call. I think I found my STP and randoneuring bike. This will be my dream bike. I will be selling the trike and keeping the Vivo as a backup ride and guest ride.

My Corsa build plans:
  1. 2008 Corsa, Black, Medium frame
  2. 155mm Cranks (possibly 153mm, I may have to get Ultegra cranks cut down)
  3. Q-Rings (53,40,30)
  4. Euromesh Seat (standard)
  5. Rans B-38 Bar (recommended by Dale, good idea for my beefy self)
  6. Mirror (left)
  7. Schmidt Dynohub
  8. Schmidt E6 or LED Light
  9. wired Tail Light
  10. One Arm Bandit light mount
  11. Fenders (Dale's magic solution)
  12. Lowrider Panniers (yellow, fasten to the seat)
  13. Seat Bag
  14. 2 water bottle holders attached to seat
  15. Time ATAC XS pedals and cleats
  16. Bontrager Hardcase tires
  17. 2 spare tires (folding bead)
  18. 4 spare tubes
  19. Helmet Light probably Cateye EL410
  20. Visor for my helmet (homemade most likely, possibly using plastic from a flower pot)

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