BikePark Wales – now with added Belly

BikePark Wales - Uplift
BikePark Wales – Uplift

The 1st November 2015 recorded some of the highest temperatures in the UK for the time of the year with Mid Wales hitting 22 Celsius!  What an amazing stroke of luck that we (a large contingent from MB Swindon) were heading to BikePark Wales again.  You can’t plan the weather as you have to book the uplift months in advance – we booked this trip in August with no idea what was going to be in store for us!   Continue reading “BikePark Wales – now with added Belly”

RTFM and Don’t Panic

STANS No Tubes / Airshot
STANS No Tubes / Airshot

Yes, read the manual (or talk to the bike/rim manufacturer), do some research and don’t be hasty and go out and buy what you think is the right equipment for your tubeless set up!

My woes yesterday have been settled – just about. Here is a short list of my mistakes and poor assumptions:

  1. I didn’t need the Stans Tubeless kit
  2. I just needed some tape and valves
  3. Rim strips are for converting rims, not for tubeless ready rims
  4. My tyres were NEVER going to seat with the rim strip!
  5. The Stans tape in the kit wasn’t wide enough
  6. A valve from an old inner tube is not the best valve to use
  7. The wheel wasn’t cracked or broken

I learned today a little about wheel technology and how different wheels are made and that small fissures are possible when the rim is cold joined rather than welded.

Wider tape should have sorted this out and Tubeless Round 2 will begin tomorrow.

WTB Tubeless Compatible System

The only thing I got right on my shopping list was the Airshot tyre inflator – thats a great piece of kit and here’s my review of it..

EDIT – After a puncture and burp free day of uplifting at BikePark Wales at the weekend my tubeless efforts paid off.

Veni Vidi Vici Vitus


My plans for Saturday changed a few times throughout the week. Until almost the last minute I had intended to do a big mountain ride and navigate my way around the classic Welsh Brecon Gap. This was to be a test of my fitness and the Vitus Escarpe on a big ride – with 35km of rugged Brecon Beacons riding and a tasty 1000m of climbing. With my fitness feeling a bit off, this was going to be a bigger test of me rather than the bike.

A friend, who I ‘blame’ for my interest in mountain biking, responded to my request to help me test the new wheels on the steep and technical hillsides of South Wales and we met at lunch time for what would be a great few hours.

Continue reading “Veni Vidi Vici Vitus”

Ch Ch Ch Changes…

Vitus Escarpe VRX

There’s nothing quite like the feeling of getting on a new bike, and today I did this.

Selling my Giant Trance this week had been a bit of a dilemma. There was nothing really wrong with it, and since making the switch to 1×10 in the Spring it has seen a new lease of life.

I was quite sad to say goodbye to such a trusty bike but at 4 years old it had served me well and it was time to step up.

So after much searching, reading and procrastination, today saw me getting behind the bars of a new machine!

Continue reading “Ch Ch Ch Changes…”