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Teton Dave

Teton Dave

Teton Dave

Teton Dave wrote a review of on October 3, 2018

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I owned the original Smith Forefront and rode it for a couple of years, and loved it, until I crashed and had to replace it. Because I liked the original I purchased the Forefront 2 with MIPS.

The good: great styling, great color selection, MIPS, comfortable, stays put, all good. It does what a helmet should do. Protect your noggin while not calling attention to itself.

The gripe: this is big for me, but maybe not for you. When I ride I tend to get what I call "hot head" - no matter what helmet I wear. My face and head always gets hot and it causes most glasses I wear to fog up. For that reason, I often put my glasses on my helmet until I'm done climbing and need them. The original Forefront had the eyewear groove above the visor, which made it very easy to place my glasses in the groove while riding and with one hand. On the Forefront 2 they've moved that groove underneath the visor. So, to get the glasses onto the helmet you need to move the visor up, and insert the arms of your glasses just right so they go into the groove underneath the visor. I have taken this helmet on 1/2 dozen rides so far and I can't get to the point where I can do this operation one-handed. This means that I need to stop, and with both hands insert the glasses into the channel. This is really irritating to me because I don't like stopping just to put glasses on my helmet. I can't get over this and I'm now irritated that I spent all of this money on this helmet and a seemingly simple design change has changed the way I have to ride. They claim that the groove in the back of the helmet will also hold your eyewear. It might, but who puts their glasses on the back of their head while riding? The fit of the eyewear/groove is not tight and I'm concerned that my eyewear will fall off without me knowing it.

Apart from that gripe, it's a great helmet. But, if you're like me, and you don't like stopping just to put eyewear onto your helmet, I'd look for a helmet that makes that process easier.

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Teton Dave

Teton Dave wrote a review of on November 3, 2017

2 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I've been using these shoes for eight months of constant riding through the long SoCal summer, and one very wet SoCal winter, and my impressions are mixed.

Pro's:
- The fit was perfect
- Fairly good traction for hike-a-bikes on dirt or rock
- Stiff and light

Con's:
- Boa system is flawed

I tried at least 8 different shoes from various manufacturers and these fit me perfectly. On and off the bike the shoes performed very well, they were comfortable and I hardly noticed them down there doing the job of attaching me to my pedals without making my feel fall asleep. That being said there is a big "con".

I had concerns about the Boa system on an MTB shoe and those concerns were a reality from the beginning. The button/knob was almost always difficult to push and pull and the Boa cable, every time, had to be stretched out with my hands to get my feet out of the shoes. My expectation, perhaps unfairly, was that if I release the Boa I could easily remove my feet from the shoes but having to manually loosen both sides of the Boa cable on each shoe was a bit of an irritation. I was willing to put up with that though since the shoes fit me so well. Last week the loop at the top of the shoe that routes the Boa cable broke, leaving the shoe to always feel loose.

So, I'm about to see how the return policy is. Overall I think it's a good shoe but the Boa system needs to be improved and the loops that route the cable need to be made of a stronger material to ensure they don't fail.

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Teton Dave

Teton Dave wrote a review of on October 27, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I've used the Thule T2 Pro 2-bike rack for about a year. That amounts to about 200 uses with various bikes from 29ers to 26ers to 650b's to 5" fatties. I've even used it to transport a couple of cruiser bikes, some with fenders and some without fenders on the front wheel. It'll handle them all!

The pro's:
- Stout, well thought-out design
- Good looks
- Easy operation
- Fits (almost) all bikes and sizes with ease

The con's:
- Didn't quite fit a 5" fattie
- Front wheel tray is so large I had to trim it
- Lock insert on knob never quite fit perfectly

Day one, out of the box, this rack was easy to assemble and easy to install and slid right into place on my 2014 Volvo XC60 with a 2" receiver. The one-hand operation to raise and lower the rack is great and well engineered. This rack lives on my vehicle full-time so having a super easy way to raise/lower the rack with one hand is a very welcome feature. The ability to adjust the horizontal load bars is also handy when you're on the way for a weekend of biking with 4 bikes of various sizes (we borrowed the 2-bike add-on), saddle heights and handlebar widths. We were able to easily adjust it to fit four bikes whose handlebars and saddles would have otherwise interfered with each other. Driving out of the gas station and onto the road I realized the wisdom behind putting a little skid plate underneath the main knob you use to tighten the rack into your hitch. I scraped the rack on the road, went out and checked, and sent a non-verbal "kudo's" to the engineers who put that skid plate there because it saved my hours-old rack from getting damaged. Note to self: these racks stick out a ways...be careful when exiting gas stations.

I've used this rack with bike frames of all sizes, wheel sizes and tire widths. The ONLY issue I've had with the rack is that the ratchet strap for the rear wheel didn't quite fit the 5" fattie tire my buddy decided to ride one day and we had to use a bungee cord to strap the rear wheel onto the rack.

The nice, big tray that is supposed to fit up to a 5" tire is SO big that it actually rubs against my bumper on my vehicle. I'm not aware of a smaller tray you can purchase for the T2 Pro, so I was stuck with having to trim the tray to make clearance for it. If Thule would have made the tray just 1/2" shallower, bingo. But they didn't, so there you have it.

The lock insert on the main knob has never seated properly in the hole. So, this means I have to be extra careful when removing or installing the rack so the lock insert doesn't fall out. Maybe this is user error, but I've had many Thule lock inserts over the years and this one just doesn't seem perfect.

Fun story: I was on the 405 Freeway South of Long Beach with my rack on my car in the folded-up position when a guy crashed into me from behind. His car was messed up. Mine has a bent bike rack tray. Literally no other damage. That's how stout this rack is. But I'm getting his insurance to buy me a new rack and I'm getting the same one I had.

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