Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Urban Assault

I just picked up this Raleigh Redux 3.
She's a real beauty!!!

Specs can be found here.
As much as I love recumbent bikes/trikes they just don't work well while travelling.
I spent the last 12 months riding my Xootr Swift folder which has proved itself in over 5600 miles.
The only real problem has been the harsh ride on those 20 inch wheels. I wanted a bike with large volume tires, simple drivetrain, nimble handling and no front shock. My ideal ride was one of those 80's rigid mountain bikes made from Chromoloy steel. Unfortunately it would require new drivetrain and wheels and the expense seemed prohibitive. I also felt a new bike was in order. I was looking at 1x 10/11 mountain bikes but it meant a front shock and better road tires as I didn't plan on doing much trail riding and the cost was greater than my $1k budget. I finally came across the Redux 3 which had most of my requirements. My concern was all aluminum and Promax hydraulic disk breaks. I do most of my own wrenching and have no knowledge of hydraulics and know that Promax is pretty bad. As far as the aluminum it's hard to escape as that's what manufacturers seem to be producing. I new the 2.0 tires would soak up the bumps and aluminum will survive the elements. This bike will spend it's life outside on the back of my car. Another reason not to over invest. 
I finally bit the bullet and purchased this $900 bike off eBay for $557. The bike was easy enough to assemble except when it came time to attach the front disk brake. Being the guy that I am I saw no reason to read the directions. The front brake did not go on and I took it apart to make it fit. I broke the hydraulic seal and oil went everywhere including the caliper. I finally went to my teacher, YouTube, and learned it was beyond my capabilities and expertise. The next morning with tail between my legs I brought the bike to a shop. I was told the brake and rotor were toast and the repair/replacement would be $150. The only good from this was I replaced with a quality brake by Shimano. I was fortunate and got the bike back the next day and proceeded to make the final adjustments. I took the bike for a 10 mile trial run and so far am quite pleased. It's plenty fast, has a nice smooth and nimble ride, the 1x9 11/40 cassette with a 40 chainring offers all the gears I need and the brakes work perfectly. I am awaiting a rear rack and kickstand. The seat is comfortable enough at present. The Schwalbe Big Ben 2.0 tires smooth out the chipseal nicely. It does have a more aggressive riding position than I'm used too. I ordered a shorter stem and will see how that works or maybe a 2 inch riser handlebar might be in order. I also had to order a bike rack for car transport.
It's always fun to get a new ride and look forward to all the new miles of smiles.

No comments: