I am not sure how this train ended up here, but some how it did. I am not sure yet if it is a bad thing or good thing, only some more time will tell. Not too long ago I was a steel is real kind of rider. I have been sold on riding a steel frame ever since I hopped on my first steel bmx bike and could not believe just how different it felt. The next stop had me trading in my aluminum and carbon road bike for a full steel frame and loved the way it took out the small shudder bumps.
I have stated a few times that the only way I would ride an aluminum bike was if it was on a full suspension bike. Well, I guess I miss stated. Earlier this year I found myself not having any luck with my fs bike leading up to PMBAR. At that point I had been spending my riding time on my rigid Surly 1×1. I had an opportunity to pick up a 2009 Fuji hard tail 29er in my budget. It was not the top of the line bike, but I could not be picky with all the little details and I found myself riding an aluminum frame again that did not have a shock.
I have enjoyed riding that bike much more then my FS bike and it filled the need that I had for most of my races. It has handled everything I have thrown at it and I don’t think my old FS bike would have done me any better. The time riding this bike it seems that I have done what some say as drink the cool-aid of the 29″ wheels. Just like riding a SS, there are pros and cons to everything, but I was really liking the pros that came along with the bigger wheels.
This lead to me picking up a set of 29er wheels and putting them on my 1×1. I was trying to save up some money to get a frame that was made for the wheel size. The 1×1 was doing the job, but it was not made for it. Then the stars seemed to align and a new frame was in my hands. Here I found a Misfit DiSSent AL frame just waiting for me to swap my parts over to it.
Before I knew it, it seems that I now had 2 mtb’s that were aluminum hard tails. What was I thinking? It was one thing to have my geared bike that way since I really prefer riding my SS bike, but now both of the bikes I have are that way. I was not sure if the difference in frame material would cause more pain then I already feel after riding the rigid bike.
Well on the shakedown snow ride, it seems that there were a few things that I noticed that I didn’t think about. The misfit is over 8 lbs lighter then the Fuji. I could tell it was lighter right away. What I did not expect was to really feel how light the bike rode. I found myself wanting to run a bigger gear and I am not in the shape that I will be in next spring. So I hope there are some good things to come from this new ride. Only time will tell if I will still preach steel is real or not.