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Daniel

Daniel

Daniel's Bio

Gravel, bikepacking, dirt riding in Salt Lake.

Daniel

Danielwrote a review of on February 9, 2019

3 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I found this post decent but not spectacular. I really like the function of it on the right terrain - riding some steep doubletrack and hiking trails it was fantastic to get over the back of the saddle on a gravel bike.

However this post is on the heavy side for a dropper, adding a full pound to my bike. It worked well enough (see my complaints below on the CX remote) and construction quality is quite good. This dropper is quite simple internally and easily rebuildable, and that I greatly appreciated. Installing saddles is a bit annoying but no worse than many other posts and I didn't care for the position where the cable attaches, it got in the way of the seatpost clamp on my bike.

I really wanted to like the CX dropper lever on my gravel bike after a month of riding. But I don't. My biggest complaint was difficulty of getting clean cable routing - the position forces the housing to curl around to follow the bar contour which introduces a lot of cable drag. Then the inline barrel adjuster didn't want to hold the housing straight unless it was adjusted all the way in. I don't know what brand the included cable was, but my Park Tool cable cutter really didn't want to cut it cleanly and the cable end position behind the lever made it fussy to cut short enough to be unobtrusive. It was hard to get good tension on the cable before clamping without a third hand, and lastly, there was no grip to the lever blade so by thumb wanted to slip off on rough terrain. Oh, and you have to completely unwrap your bar tape for install.

The kit includes cable and housing, so everything you need for install. 3 stars for the post, 2 stars for the lever. I'll probably try a different brand next.

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Daniel

Danielwrote a review of on January 31, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

This piece is nicely lightweight and wicks sweat extremely well. I tend to sweat a good bit when layered up in winter but this piece when paired just with a softshell jacket is excellent and I found myself definitely drier. I'm thinking about picking up more to wear under my shirts everyday at the office.

Fit is American, similar to many Pearl Izumi or Louis Garneau pieces. It's not a compressive fit like some baselayers but not loose and flappy either. It's is on the long side, perfect for taller folks.

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Daniel

Danielwrote a review of on January 30, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I was quite impressed with this bike. First, looks. This is honestly one of the cleanest bikes designs I've seen with the internal routing and aero stem, and the paint is fantastic.

This bike definitely fits in the "endurance road" category and is perhaps the best bike in the category. The wheelbase and angles make it feel confidently stable and comfortable while still having the get-up-and go to out sprint the yellow stoplight on the weekly group ride. It's no lightweight climber but it's certainly not heavy, and while it doesn't quite have the lively feel of a race bike, it's far more manageable and would be a pleasure to spend a day on. The rear triangle has a flex suspension built in which does just enough to take the harshness out of the ride (even on the 23mm tires I was riding) but doesn't otherwise distract - you'll probably forget it's there.

This bike is a bit more upright than your standard road racer which is one of my favorite things. Too many road bikes expect the rider to be a flexible pro who want to be staring at their stem and ducking out of the wind the whole ride but this bike puts you upright enough to enjoy the views on an all-day ride and get a lot of use out of the drops without feeling like a hybrid. The reach is on the short size compared to other bikes so check the geometry chart or consult with a bike fitter or a Gearhead when figuring out your size.

Lastly, parts spec - eTap, once you're used to it, performs fantastically with sold feeling shifts. The Mavic carbon aero wheels are stiff where they need to be but won't beat you up. The bars have great reach and drop numbers for a bike like this, the HRD brakes stop well with excellent modulation, and the Rotor cranks look good.

I'd recommend this bike for any rider who wants to get out on all day rides on varying terrain, perhaps someone is coming back to road riding years after their racing career ended and wants a fast bike without the comfort sacrifices of a race bike, or who just doesn't have the flexibility or patience for something more aggressive.

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Daniel

Danielwrote a review of on January 30, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Sadly this is just an initial impression as the weather has not gotten cold enough to truly test this jacket. Quality is excellent. Castelli has had some issue with seams coming apart on some pieces but everything is very nicely sewn on this. Design also is quite impressive - every part of the jacket has been carefully considered to ensure a perfect fit with temperature regulation and weather resistance. The inner sewn in vest adds some extra warmth and allows the outer zipper to open up during the climbs for ventilation without the jacket flapping all over and letting in cold breezes. The sleeves are the perfect length and tailored to fit into gloves. The collar is a nice height, the pockets are accessible, and there are reflective accents in unobtrusive locations. Windstopper panels are on the front and cozy fleece is placed everywhere else to vent heat when you're riding hard.

I found the fit excellent but did size up a good bit. I normally wear medium in more American sized brands like Pearl Izumi and Louis Garneau and size large in Castelli tops. A large in this jacket certainly would have worked but I chose an XL for a little bit more room for layers on the coldest of days and am still happy with the fit. So I'd say runs true to size for race fit Castelli.

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Daniel

Danielwrote a review of on January 30, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These are great and quite affordable! The base seals up and holds sealant just fine and the valve core is of course removable. I like the pop of red on these add to a bike but they may not work with everyone's color scheme. A second, longer length would be nice for deeper section wheels which are common.

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Daniel

Danielwrote a review of on January 30, 2019

3 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I tend to compare all bike bags to the excellent quality of Revelate Designs, and this AcePac leaves a bit to be desired. I will say construction quality is excellent. I wish they used slightly better materials (I've snapped the velcro straps on their other bags) and I don't care for the camlock design of the fork strap. Also the attachment to the bar is a bit loose and allows more wiggle than I'd like. I wish they'd sew that piece into the bag and use a thicker strap. But once it's on the bike it functions well.

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Daniel

Danielwrote a review of on January 30, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Love the quality on these. Who of us hasn't had an end cap pop out mid-ride and roll down a sewer grate, or crash and shatter normal plastic end caps? Let me tell you, I crash a lot and these are well scuffed but still holding strong and ready to take another hit. They lock quite securely and don't use any plastic internals like some other brands. I don't care for the star graphic, but that's easily overlooked, especially after you scuff it off on the pavement!

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Daniel

Danielwrote a review of on January 30, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

DT Swiss's end cap selection can get confusing, but they have conversions for any frame standard (give us a call if you need assistance picking the right one). Quality on these is excellent and unlike some other brands' end caps, they don't fall out. Sometimes you'll need a vice or puller (Unior makes one) to remove these from the hub.

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