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Jared Downs

Jared Downs

Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on November 3, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I've used a bunch of the skratch labs products and enjoyed them all, so I figured it was time to give this ago for some post work out refueling.

Taste:
It tastes just like chocolate milk and I love chocolate milk. The taste is spot on.

Mixing:
At first it didn't mix well but I kept mixing and eventually the whole think mixed perfectly. So if yours looks clumpy....keep mixing and it'll work out!

Cost:
I do think this is a little expensive since it's identical to the nutrition facts on chocolate milk (I compared against the stuff I can get at the local grocery store and everything was almost a perfect match). But the big upside with this (that I can't do with chocolate milk) is travel easily. I've tried putting chocolate milk in a thermos before and then going to the gym, working out and then consuming the milk, and that was always a gamble on whether the milk would be good or not. There were some quesitonable days.

But with this stuff, I can hit the gym, bring this with me, work out, mix it up and then get on with my day and I don't need to worry about it going back in the next hour or two. Just leave the powder in a cup until I'm ready to add water/consume.

I've mixed this in only 6oz servings to get 24 uses out of a pouch rather than 12oz servings which give you 12 uses.

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on October 20, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I can't count how many bags of this stuff I've used over the last couple years.

The only flavors I haven't tried is the Strawberries and the Passion Fruit. I'd definitely like to give those a shot.

I'm a big fan of the individual servings when on extended trips. I used this stuff on Mt Rainier and definitely was a nice way to add some happiness to some junk weather by drinking some warm Skratch.

Favorite Flavors:

1 - Lemon Lime - this is by far the best flavor and mixes the best
2 - Orange - this also mixes real well and tastes great
3 - Apples & Cinnamon - this is best warm and with a little whiskey
4 - Matcha Lemons - tastes good, I'm just not big on caffeine
5 - Pineapple - I'm not a pineapple flavor lover, but this is definitely the best tasting pineapple food I've had.
6 - Raspberry - This one mixes the worst of all the flavors I've tried but tastes good

Flavors TBD: Strawberries / Passion Fruit

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on August 30, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Swapping worn out brakes pads for new ones was mega easy. I had a pair of the Organic pads on my Yeti and they were pretty worn out. I went for a set of the Sintered pads for a little extra durability.

I have the Guide RS brakeset and all I had to do was remove the screw, slide out the old worn brake pads, slide in the new brake pads, put the screw back in and then take on a test ride to make sure everything works properly.

After that I just needed to adjust my brakes at the levers and stopping was easy.

The Sintered definitely felt like they grabbed just a split second later than the Organic pads.

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on July 24, 2017

Great Traction
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I've had these for the 2017 season and have been loving them. I went from a cheaper metal platform pedal from last year to these and have to say that these are well worth the money.

Thickness:
These pedals are mega thin and I really like them being thin and light. These being a little thinner than other platform pedals on the market definitely has helped with avoiding the pedal strikes that are close calls.

Pedal Traction:
It is actually pretty crazy how well my feel stay on these pedals. My last pair of flats didn't a garbage job of helping my feet stay in place. But these are great and I have't had my feet slip off the pedals. Plus there are a ton of extra pins that came with the pedals.

So far I haven't had any issues with the pedals, I've ridden these on an SB6, Bronson and Tallboy.

Photo:
Is of my trail partner Lily and the pedals on a Santa Cruz Tallboy 27.5+ I demo'd.

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on June 15, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This is what I'm rocking on my SB6 and I've been loving the Eagle 12 speed drive train a ton. I've had no issues and the climbs are easy thanks to the range of gears.

I went ahead and picked up a spare chain just in case. I tend to like to have spare parts around for key items that I don't want to have crap out on me while on a trip.

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on June 15, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This is what I'm rocking on my SB6 and I've been loving the Eagle 12 speed drive train a ton. I've had no issues and the climbs are easy thanks to the range of gears.

I went ahead and picked up a spare chain just in case. I tend to like to have spare parts around for key items that I don't want to have crap out on me while on a trip.

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on May 31, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I've got this in the black color for mtn biking and love the thing. Really happy to get this after a long search to find the right lumbar pack while riding.

Storage (Main Compartment):
This thing can hold a good amount of stuff for the size. I used this on a jortski day at Snowbird and had about 0.75 Liters of water in the bladder and 4 cans of Coors Light held nice and secured without any stress on the zipper.

But for biking.... I can fill the 1.5L bladder and then put in a hand pump, spare tube and other goodies for my rides.

Storage (Zippered attached to Main Compartment):
These are pretty nifty but my only complaint is that some of them are mega small. On the small ones that is where I put my tire levers and multi tool or some energy foods, or sunscreen.

Side Pockets (Zippered and Non Zippered on Belt):
I like this since they're not tiny but also not huge. I store my keys in the zippered belt pocket and some energy foot in the non-zippered pocket (that way if it were ever to fall out while riding I'd lose a $1 worth of stuff at most).

Hydration:
This might be the area where I'd say they need to improve this the most. The magnet on the end of the hose is a little weak and if it were about 50% stronger then it'd be great. But my major complaint is the lack of a fitting joining the hydration hose to the hydration bladder. So filling the hydration bladder is a little bit of a pain since you either need to pull the hose (and reroute it when you put the bladder back in the pack) or fill the water with the pack right next to the sink/water source.

Movement:
I cinch the waist belts down pretty tight and that keeps the pack in place while pedaling or riding down hill. There has been a little movement in the pack at times, but when that happens I just tighten the belt a little more the next time I come to a stop.


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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on May 4, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This is a super easy to use lock and I don't use it for locking my bike to my car rack (although I should get a second one for that).

I use mine for locking my grill and propane tank to the railing on my front porch. It can stretch out a decent bit and keeps things locked in place. Comes with a spare key which is real nice.

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on April 5, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

So I woke up one day, realized that I was being a total gumby and didn't have all the tools I needed in one spot for those desperate moments when stuff breaks out on the trail. So I picked up this tool and while I was down in Moab riding about 2 days after getting the tool, my rear derailleur broke and I was super thankful I had this tool.

One of the things that stood out on this tool were that it had a chain tool built in and then the allen wrenches were also removable (aside from the ones for your pedals). I ended up using the chain tool the very first time and was so happy to have had it with me when i fixed my derailleur back at camp.

The only tools on it I haven't used yet are the torque heads or the saw, but I'm sure there will be a day where I'll need those.

Over all, this tool is pretty compact, doesn't have a bunch of random junk that I don't need. It's well built and not flimsy or cheap feeling.

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on April 4, 2017

3 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These aren't what I'd call the best pedals but the best pedals will also run you another $100 on top of this price. So for the price they're pretty decent unless you want to drop the same on some plastic pedals.

I used these all last year on my Santa Cruz Bronson and they worked nicely but definitely felt a little on the heavy side.

There was a little wiggle in the left pedal after a few months of riding which was able to be adjusted when i took the axel out of the pedal. But if I had a ton more play then there wouldn't have been much i could have done. It looked like it was largely due to the bushing.

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on August 4, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

For $10 this is absolutely worth having handy in your tool box. I changed out my rear tire the other day after picking up a screw on the trail. Swapped out the tire, unscrewed the valve core, screwed on the injector and filled with sealant.

The best part was keeping 100% of the sealant in the tire where it belongs. No reason not to have one of these around.

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on August 4, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Feel free to send me an email with questions on this bike rack or if you're looking to get one. I looked at a lot of the options on the market and this one stood out big time against all the rest. I'd be happy to help you with your bike rack search!

I've been using this rack for the past month and have been loving it. I'm extremely happy with this purchase even with it being as pricey as it is.

Price:
At $550 bones this isn't a cheap bike rack but one I rather call an "investment" as it's built incredibly well and I plan on having it for the next decade.

2in:
I went with the 2in and used a 1 1/4" to 2" converter/ offset adapter since I drive a 2012 Ford Focus and you can only get hitch mounts in the 1 1/4". But I went for the 2" because I want this bike rack for the next 10 years and know that eventually I'll either have a truck or an SUV since I've had my car for about 5 years. And I don't want to buy a new rack when I get a new car in a few years. Plus it has the ability for the 2 bike add on part to haul 4 bikes. Not that I'll be doing that with my Ford Focus since she's maxed out with just the rack and 2 bikes. But gotta plan for the future!

Setting Up:
When you get the box with the rack in it, you'll need at build it but it's very easy and the tools are included which is real nice. You attach the two bars, then add the wheel tray and then the rear wheel ratchet and you're good to go. The hardest part was getting the lock cores in but it just takes a minute and they're good to slid right in.

Rear Wheel Ratchet:
I have these two opposing each other so the ratchet is facing backwards on the rear bike mount and forwards on the front bike mount. This way I can loop the strap through the other mounts wheel tray when loading bikes. Otherwise the ratchet strap is in the way. (I'll add a photo since this sounds a bit wonky).

Folding Rack:
The handle on this is hands down the single best feature of the rack. This is why I went for this one above all the other racks on the market. Not having to bend over and reach around the underside of the bike rack to get it to fold up or down is the game changer with this rack. Poor ergnomics on the other bike racks since their pins are located at the pivot point. So with the T2 there is no straining your back or monkeying around.

Hit me up with any and all questions on this bike rack!

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on August 3, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These cost so little that its easy to have a few sets of these stashed all over the place...in the car, tool kit, pack, etc.

They work great and are easy to use. After I picked up a sheet rock screw on the trail one day, I busted out my set and was able to break the bead on my tire real easy and get to work.

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on August 3, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These are mega easy to install and they work real great.

They're one of the items I like to have spares of in my car/at home. Not that I've had issues with the ones I've got on my bike...but for a few bucks and no more than an oz of weight, it's worth the peace of mind having these handy.

One of the key items for going tubeless.

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on August 3, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

After a few DH days with my Smith Forefront helmet I decided it was time to fork over the coin for a legit full face helmet.

I looked at some of the helmets like the Bell Super 2R thinking it'd be nice to have one helmet that could do both but it fit terrible and was so uncomfortable. Plus after looking at it realized its not as sturdy as the Bell Transfer 9.

Fit:
My head is 22.5" in circumference. Which puts me on the upper end of the fit chart fort he Medium (21.625 - 22.5in). It's a snug fit but that is how I've always worn my full face helmets from when I raced go-karts to when I rode dirt bikes. I was made fun of yesterday because it presses my cheeks in so much but it's a solid fit that in comfortable.

Protection:
The first day I had mine on we got to the bottom of the run and my riding partner who rides with the same helmet decided to put his to the test and bounce his face off the ground. Took a nice shot to the chin and walked away unharmed. His helmet had a nice gash and some battle scratches but he was totally fine. So the helmet does protect!

General PSA kids: Always wear a helmet!

If you want to chat about this helmet or any other helmet, feel free to hit me up!

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Jared Downs

Jared Downswrote a review of on August 2, 2016

4 5

Familiarity: I returned this product before using it

I haven't used this helmet so I can't comment on the quality / durability in a crash but I did try it on and then returned it.

I opted for the Bell Transfer 9 (same price point) due to the Bell having a better fit.

My head is 22.5" and the Medium for the Giro is 21.75 - 23.25in which ran a bit big on me. I think if you're on the small end of the helmet sizing for this it'd be good to look at the Bell Transfer 9.

The Medium on the Bell Transfer 9 is sized for 21.625 - 22.5in and that one fits my head really great.

In the end though, protect your noggin!

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