Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Muirwoods Sporting Big Apples

Last year I was lazy and just left the studded tires on my Marin Muirwoods after winter.  Hung up the bike in the garage and forgot about it. But not this year.  Because once I got a longer seat post installed, the bike fit me better; and I had fun biking it to work.  It's a sporty and nimble bike, even with 2" wide studded tires on it. 

Studs have to be off by April 1st in Washington State. Maybe that just applies to motor vehicles, but just to be safe I switched them out Saturday.  Of course, as soon as I did that, snow was in the forecast for Monday.

Got me some Schwalbe Big Apples, 50-622. Some smooth, wide tires with built in suspension for rolling over city streets. Not supple. Heavy. The anti-BQ tire. Only $28 each.

Some or most of our residential streets that developed cracks in them were never filled with tar or repaired, and so just got wider.  I've been giving the tires a tryout riding to work the last few days and trying different tire pressures.  So far so good.  A nice comfortable ride.  A dream on the Centennial Trail.

The plan right now is for the Marin to be my grocery-getting, dog-hauling, bar-hopping-townie bike so I don't have to lock the Vaya up outside business establishments or the dog park. I was looking for a beater bike, but I'm going to put the Marin to more use instead.

I'll have to find a basket or front rack, and pull out an old rear rack for it. Of course, it'll also tow my BoB trailer just fine.

The longer seat post is nice and helps the bike fit me better, but it still could have more set back.  

One thing about the Marin - the steering is like going from a typical power steering vehicle to a rack and pinion so I have to be careful. Quick turning, even with Big Apples. I'm not sure why - I did some calculations and the trail is 68, flop is 20; I don't know what those numbers add up to, or what is in the geometry that makes it so.  Maybe it's just the wide handlebars, who knows.


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