Sorry, that took longer than expected and you’re getting the finishing
touches after we’ve ridden the beast but here we go with the final fixtures
First we need somewhere to stand;
The bit your feet go on. I’ve been riding flatties more since I trashed my
ankle, but I’m still a clipless addict at heart.
Time ATAC Equipe Pro £150, RJ Chicken 01582 873329
I’ve ridden SPD’s and SPD compatible copies since the came out, purely
because that’s what test bikes nearly always come with and I can’t be arsed
to switch cleats all the time. I’ve been wanting to try the legendary mud
proof performance of Time’s for ages though, so mid winter seems like a
smart season to give them a whirl.
And to keep the scooter in the manner to which it is becoming accustomed,
our wallet took another stinging (yes, we really did pay for them – but
thanks for the deal Cedric) as we went for the top line Equipe Pro titanium,
in all it’s ultralight glory.
Very simple as long as you’ve got an 8mm Allen key (crank sized). Grease the
pedal threads and wind them in, remembering that both threads turn forwards
to resist crank rotation unscrewing. Time’s don’t have 15mm bolt faces but
most other pedals do, so check which works for yours before you get home and
Then we need somewhere to sit;
Your saddle, survives countless hours of grinding away under gritty
buttocks, gets bounced off rocks and walls on a regular basis, and we still
want it to be light and comfy.
Flite Genuine Gel Ti £49.99, RJ Chicken 01582 873329Why?
We briefly toyed with fitting our all leather Brooks Swift retro classic,
which is just getting comfy after years of breaking in. On the plus side
those copper rivets would match the Avid brakes, and we know it will still
be going strong centuries from now, but even with titanium rails, it weighs
the best part of a pound, which negates a whole lot of R+D weight saving
As hard saddle fans (in case you hadn’t guessed) we’ve always loved the
basic Flite titanium for lightweight comfort but we thought we’d give the
Gel version a whirl. There’s a bunch of emdroidery (which we often don’t get
on with) and the gel adds 100g but if it makes a difference to our derriere
we won’t give it the bums rush.
Saddle choice, angle and position are a very personal thing so be prepared
to play around a lot to get really comfy. We normally end up nose down,
while others ride nose up, but it’s probably best to start straight and
level. Don’t forget that sliding the saddle backwards and forwards can also
have a big effect on not just handlebar reach, but also on how much front
wheel grip you have for climbs and corners.
We still haven’t decided on wheels yet or whether to run tubeless or
conventional tyres, but for the moment our stand in pair of Rolf’s need some
Panaracer Trailblaster 1.8 £ Zyro PLC, 01423 325325
We don’t need much carcass size cushioning because of the soft and flexy
frame, and so we can run lighter, thinner tyres. Most light, thin tyres are
really compromised on survivability and traction though and we don’t want to
spend all our time tip-toeing round corners or mending flats.
Thankfully Panaracer’s skinny 1.8″ version of the Trailblaster tyre not only
has better wet weather grip than its more summer specific big brothers plus
the same very fast rolling performance, but it keeps the Anti Snake Bite
bumper next to the rim. All for a measly 420g. Hurrah – a proper lightweight
Pretty much the same as a normal tyre, just make sure that the ASB rubber is
sat evenly round the rim. Wrestling the tyre about once it’s half inflated
normally does the trick. As for pressure we’ve been running around 35-40 psi
on these for ages with no problems. If you’re a big rider on big rocks don’t
try extra pressure, just get a bigger tyre to start with.
Then we need to know how long we’ve been sitting in the saddle, how hard
we’ve been pressing on the pedals and how far the tyres have rolled.
Like those little peg and cog milometers, but electronic and a lot
Cateye Cordless II £29.99 Zyro PLC 01423 325325
The worst thing about computers – especially with suspension forks –
are the cables. All that ziptie and tape nonsense just upsets us and never
looks neat. Plus we’re probably going to be switching forks about till we
find the one we like best.
We chose Cateye, because we’ve used them for years and they’ve never given
us any grief, the display is big enough to read easily, and the new cordless
version has a 70cm range to cope with longer forks and riser bars (on this
note it’s worth mentioning, the new long range version only comes in black,
the coloured ones still only have a 45cm range.
Once you’ve got the unit where you want on the handlebars, then fit the
sensor to the forks so that you get the right close clearance on the wheel
magnet. Extra marks to Cateye, for the ‘one size fits all’ handlebar and
fork mounts but particularly for the new thumbscrew spoke magnet.
Then follow the instrcutions to set time, date, wheel size etc. Again Cateye
score points for actually having a realistic wheel measurement chart in the
instructions but this isn’t always the case. Check it by rolling the wheel
along the floor and subtracting about 10mm for the sag compression caused
when you sit on it.
Check the fastenings one last time, spin the wheel to check the computer
works and you’re ready. Be warned though, as with any computer, you’ve never
gone as far or as fast as you think you have.
So can we go for a ride now?
Yes you could, but another five minutes spent now will stop your bike looking
second-hand after only half an hour.
Yes kids, it’s cable patch time;
Little protective patches to stop jiggling cables from trashing your
We’ve used all sorts of stuff, from black Duck/Gaffer tape on the
carbon bits, silver tape on the fork crowns, sticky backed plastic on the
frame and the proper Gripshift chainstay protector on the chainstay.
There are all sorts of packs of scuff patches from the covers of old
magazines, cards hanging in your local bike shop or even pimpy carbon effect
ones from Pace. The real items look and work a lot better than Fablon
(sticky backed plastic) or Sellotape, but making sure they cover the point
the cables actually rub, rather than where you think they will/where looks
neatest is more important.
Don’t forget cables rubbing on shocks, fork crowns etc. either. We wrap
gaffer around the cables themselves to slow down the abrasion, but make sure
you check it regularly.
So that’s it, with a few scrag ends of gaffer tape giving a somewhat
ignominious end to the birth of Scoop’s Superscooter, it’s finally time to
hit the trails.