Wednesday, December 2, 2009

New Bike and Not New Bikes

I've been riding my Spectrum very happily for nearly two months now.  After about a month on it, I was curious to see how it compares to my Parlee Z1x, the bike on which I rode Leipheimer Gran Fondo and which I adored for its smoothness and comfort.  So, two weeks ago, I rode the Parlee.  It felt stiff and dead compared to the Spectrum.  I was forced to ride gears 3-4 cogs lower than those I ride on the Spectrum.  Just confirmed the unique fitness of the Spectrum to my riding style.

Then, during the Thanksgiving break, my family visited my father-in-law in Palm Springs, whose garage houses my 1982 Picchio bike, which I ride when I'm down there.  This bike is quite different from the Spectrum.  The Picchio is steel frame and fork, the cranks are 1cm shorter, and chainrings are round rather than oval (I'm a big fan of Rotor Q-rings), the bars are lower than I like, and the saddle is about 1.5cm farther forward due to short saddle rails of the Brooks B-17.  It took a while to get used to the Picchio, but after a while it felt good and lively.  I rode it twice: a 3-hour flat ride and a 4.5-hour ride that had 1.5 hour of flats, 2 hours of climbing and almost an hour of descent.  It was good on climbs and flats, not so great on descents due to super-low bars (no room to raise them the way the bike is set up).

We got back and I eagerly rode the Spectrum.  Soooo nice............


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