So its summer time, and that’s when I like to pump up the tires and get out on my bike. I live in the city, and there are lots of trails and streets to ride on. There’s a riverside pathway system and lots of dirt trails too. The days are long and often the weather is sunny and dry and that makes for great conditions to get out there and enjoy it.
I have a road bike, but the reality is that I don’t get it out much. I used to ride that a lot more where I lived previously due to nice open roads and little traffic. But this blog is about my mountain bikes, which I really love.
A few years ago, maybe about 5 now, I purchased a Kona Cinder Cone bike. My wife had bought a Kona Blast a year or two before that and that bike is a more basic model but I was impressed with how it rode and felt. I bought this one at a shop in Dawson Creek, BC. I spent about $1200 Canadian on this bike. I remember that I was there on a Saturday morning. I wasn’t even intending on buying a bike that day. I had owned a bike previous to that for almost 20 years, so its not like I upgrade every year or two.
I took the Kona for a test ride, and boy, I was sold on that bike. It was so frikkin’ smooth to ride. The only thing I didn’t like was the seat, which was this hard racing style seat. I can’t understand why a decent bike has to be fitted with a sort of hard seat just to be credible. I exchanged that seat with a gel one. If you are kind of thinking about it, get a gel one. They are super comfy and they come in ergonomic forms that don’t look clunky or whatever but the comfort level is amazing.
I had to mess with things a little bit to keep it working well. It was not changing gears cleanly – making noises and sort of hanging on to one gear and clicking etc. I took it to the bike shop for an unrelated matter and the guy put it on the stand and checked my derailleur alignment. The piece the derailleur is bolted to gets bent out of shape and it needs to be bent back to straight. It rides like a dream now.
Here are some pictures of my Kona:
So back in 1992, I bought a Giant ATX 860. I bought it at Joe’s Cycles in Mt Isa, Queensland, Australia. I had it shipped to Canada when I moved here. Aluminum frame, no front suspension. In those days if you wanted front suspension, you pretty much had to go high end, or substitute a rock shox or something that would set you back half as much again as the value of the bike. I spent $900 on this bike.
I really got a lot of value out of it. I’ve done so many kilometers on this thing. I’ve changed tire styles and treads on it, I put a rack on the back, and some of those handle bar extensions. It’s been a loyal friend of mine. The lack of front suspension, and the brake effectiveness had me thinking about changing up to a better bike, so I did. I figured for as much value as I got out of this bike, I could easily justify a new one.