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Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
WARNING! skip the 1st 3 paragraphs if ya want the meat of the story.

so ya all saw what i had done to the rfx in preperation for a dh race and i got some good advice from many of ya. thanx for that. well race weekend was a week away and i thought the storm damage would keep me home and workin but my frustration with the amount of family assistance i was gettin put me up over the edge and fri night at midnight, i got home to more of nuthin bein done so i announced i was packin up my gear and leavin in the mornin. c-ya!

with yet another 4 hours of sleep that night (a pattern this week it seems) i spent the breakfast hour snuggelin with candycorn instead cuz shes now outta town on biz for a week. then the 7 hour drive to rapid city, takin a extra hour to sleep in a rest area when my eyes started to cross. sparrow and his wife put me up for the night again but not before some beers at the shop and a lovely lemon chicken dinner. thanx tim and marta!

im up early to load the bikes and get through deadwood before the parade starts cuz theres only 1 road through the town. 1 hour later im at terry peak ski area just outside of lead (leed) s.d., burried in tall pines and big hillsides, gettin geared up and headed to the lift for practice. ran into several pals from last years race and my many other black hills visits like joe who had a brand new stab supreme.

the 1st run was a throwaway. air got in the lines of my brand new brakes and gettin down was no fun. i did get a chance to scope the course so that was cool. way tougher than last year. it seems the moto boys ride it in a enduro event so the rocks were doubled up, the ruts were a cpl feet deeper and the roots far more exposed. the upper and mid sections through the trees felt like ridin through a gauntlet of baseball bats and tire irons the old lower section through the grass was all but gone, replaced with a crazy steep chute/chicane tree section. nice! thanx for listenin guys. this was way way more fun!

after a full bleed, it was time for run #2 but unfortunately, that didnt go a whole lot better. i caught joe early up top and lost focus endin up in a shyt!/save, shyt!/save, shyt!/save, SHYT!!!! kinda senario that tossed me into a steep and massive rock field off course. nasty stuff but my dainese kept me alive as i tumbled through watchin the bike fly over my head and stop against a fallen tree with a busted ft lever. i stopped in the boulders with nuthin more than a few scrapes and a sore righr forearm. i was able to get the lever back into the body and make it down for repairs after another small off... or was it 2?

theres a reason i bring spares and a new lever assembly waited but damage the the body was too great so my new carbon bat lever was forced into use and another bleed followed. run #3 was a crash fest. at 1 point i ended up head down, feet down, knees wrapped around a tree and my ankles trapped in the bars. part of it was rider error and some was a rear lever that got soft and hit the grip. i think there was another small off or 2 as i finished that run. back to the bleed kit and more liquid courage. i missed the xc race as i kept workin on the brakes and my head.

a few more runs but the brake never felt right. i knew i needed to replace the rear lever like i did the front but it was time to find a camp spot and get some dinner. indian tacos rock! the locals hooked me up with dinner at spearfish crossing and a kick ass camping spot. we were all killed from the days heat, plenty of crashes and busted bike parts so bed came early for the group. up at 6:30 to fix my brakes, set up a proto lyric for perry and replace a der cable and a rear tire for a fast grom whos name escapes me. yeah, spares rock and im a softy so i gave em away. now we can hit breakfast (mmmmmmmmmmmm!) at the crossing and head for the lift.

3 practice runs went well now that the bike was mostly sorted and it was time for a beer or 2 before the race run to settle my head. i was gonna go up for more but joe made a good point when he said 'we got 3 in and didnt crash so lets make the most of our confidence level.' advice taken joe!

so its go time. theres 4 of us in weenie old mens class, mostly the same old crew from '07 were i crashed and slid my way outta the top spot (3rd i think) so the plan was to go low and slow. keep it on the floor and let things build as the run progressed which is kinda how it worked. half way down, the chainguide failed to do its job and the dropped chain locked my cranks firmly in place at roughly 90 deg. of course this happened right before the 1st of 3 pedaling sections so it was aero coast city besides havin to get off and push up over 2 small ups. not a huge time loss but i figure it all for close to :10 or :20 tops.

backin up a bit, the start went well, the 1st drop in chute where i went down last year was fine, the tree sections felt faster, i passed on the hip jump due to low speed after the chain locked up and opted for the lower, slower berm shot, never felt the love of the mega chute and took the longer dropaway/flat track loop, slipped back into the forest line, clipped a tree with the bar but kept the flow goin somehow, felt good on the kickers commin outta the 2nd tree section and tucked for all i was worth as i sped uphill into the last and gnarlyest bit.... the drop in/chicane. tough enough when ya can weight the outside pedal, impossible when ya cant. or is it? truth is i never felt faster there the whole weekend. i entered it with less braking and more speed than before, tossed it sideways with my inside foot waaaaaay out dropped into hell with dirt and rocks flyin off my tires, got my foot back up and slid into the next berm (or what was left of it) and railed that beotch tryin to retain as much momentum as i could for the ups and exit into what would normally be the sprint to the line. push, remount, push, remount, launch, tuck, hope for a brake and the clock may be my pal.

it was! 1st in beginner men 30 and over with a time of 4:13 i think. sounds cool untill ya know the experts are burin a 2:50. so..... that 1st win only took 13 years of downhillin and 15 years of xc racin to achive. i figured i had a good shot this time but ive thought that before. whats cool is we all hung out all weekend and helped eachother any way we could. big respect for curt, joe and doug. this course was brutal. several falls by everyone on 2 wheels, many hopes of wins were shot on race day. the fave overall winner from last year had a bad run cuttin his ankle open on a rock and crashin into a tree later. sorry jake but 3rd aint bad after a run like that. some never came back for the race after practice due to injury and fear. too bad but ya gotta stay in yer comfort level. maybe more "b" lines are needed next year.

at the end, i interviewed for the local nbc station, gathered up a set of kenda studded snow tires and some jagwire cable kits, did a cple photo runs with joe and perry, packed up and headed home for the 8 hour drive, back to reality and my dogs. felt good to be home. thanx for the great times guys!

ill get pics up as soon as joe sends them. im outta time to post my semi lame shots anyway. oh, and i ran flats, sticky shoes, a 28.5" wide bar i got from tim at acme bikes, inboard brakes and 1 finger levers. it worked out it seems. thanx for the tips folks! i can retire a winner now, right?
 

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Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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12,942 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
yeah, maybe just skip to the 11th paragraph. damn if it isnt like a friggin book!

thanx guys. pics should be up by the mornin, at least the ones i took which kinda suck. joe had the 35mm digi.
 

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trail fairy
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9,546 Posts
Awesome write up CC enjoyed every sentance felt like I was almost on the trip, sheesh 8hrs behind the wheel is deidcation dude props!

Congrats on the win sounds well deserved with that adversity! maybe that one finger braking kept ya off the brakes long enough to get those precious seconds for the win, good on yer for sticking it out, many woulda pulled out so I reckon ya won more than once over the weekend

Look forward to the piccs, just take yer time bro get some more rest and hopefully ya get some help around home!

:band:
 

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Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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12,942 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
ill tell ya, the 1 finger thing took some gettin used to and time was short. i found myself goin back to my old ways and had to force the spare finger back on the bars early on. at the end i found myself gettin used to the whole thing but im still not all the way there.

same with the bars. had to think about where my hands were in the trees way more often but dug the added control. may have to trim a tad but overall im sold on this.

the flats were far easier to deal with than i had planned on. this may have been the best change i made next to the head angle/bigger fork. i was cool with the 661launch taki's but the 50/50's are a question mark. probobly a wise choice for the 1st time but i didnt find em very sticky once i got comfy on flats. kinda thick too.
 

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trail fairy
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cactuscorn said:
ill tell ya, the 1 finger thing took some gettin used to and time was short. i found myself goin back to my old ways and had to force the spare finger back on the bars early on. at the end i found myself gettin used to the whole thing but im still not all the way there.

same with the bars. had to think about where my hands were in the trees way more often but dug the added control. may have to trim a tad but overall im sold on this.

the flats were far easier to deal with than i had planned on. this may have been the best change i made next to the head angle/bigger fork. i was cool with the 661launch taki's but the 50/50's are a question mark. probobly a wise choice for the 1st time but i didnt find em very sticky once i got comfy on flats. kinda thick too.
Don't cut them bars yet buddy, takes time, geting between trees is just an adjustment thing and a perception, there will always be tight woods, trick is not to focus on them and timming, one of my last rides last year I pin balled a few trees in succession, on the wide bars just a tad to close to the bar ends, its the one and only time usually I wrench my way through! Just stick wit it:thumbsup: Same wit brakes anything new takes time esspecially when ya get older dude:D

Yeah got no thoughts on flats Ive dedcided theyr like shoes its very personal and there's more prefferences than commonality for people in flats than clips for me! Ya have to just try em out, just get some good sealed bearings what ever ya go for!
Carbon levers might not be so god for DH either if y gonna ride like that, maybe some twenty 6 or alloy Magura levers might be better ? How were the Ventis? and what tirs were you running? How ya feeling today, did ya get a trophy?

Is this 20 questions LOL
chur...
 

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Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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12,942 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
the bar trim idea is to fit my narrow shoulders more than clear trees. felt just a tad wide and im sore for it.

the carbon levers were in the new lever bodies. if i thought i coulda swapped em in time and not developed another issue, trust me, i woulda tossed the alloys back in. guess i was tired and gun shy of leaks and soft levers. once i mounted the new stuff and gave em a pull, i wasnt gonna mess with a proper feel. im a lucky boy i didnt fall all day or id have been out alot of carbon cash.

the big venti's were dandy. plenty of power. enough so that i could modulate finger input better and find the spot between max late braking performance and lock up. im sure its too much for trail use at my weight but it rocked for the steep runs out there.
 

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trail fairy
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9,546 Posts
cactuscorn said:
the bar trim idea is to fit my narrow shoulders more than clear trees. felt just a tad wide and im sore for it.

Skinny runt
:D

the carbon levers were in the new lever bodies. if i thought i coulda swapped em in time and not developed another issue, trust me, i woulda tossed the alloys back in. guess i was tired and gun shy of leaks and soft levers. once i mounted the new stuff and gave em a pull, i wasnt gonna mess with a proper feel. im a lucky boy i didnt fall all day or id have been out alot of carbon cash.

Haha I hear ya Im impressed ya did all that on practice and race day and still held it together, ya have a future as a race mechcanic maybe ya could wrench for a World Cupper
:p:thumbsup:

the big venti's were dandy. plenty of power. enough so that i could modulate finger input better and find the spot between max late braking performance and lock up. im sure its too much for trail use at my weight but it rocked for the steep runs out there.
Awesome dude, awesome, yeah I likey those rotors, look forward to the piccs, sure sounds like a ripper weekend :thumbsup:
...chur..
 

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Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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12,942 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
it dug into practice time and unsettled some runs but ya gotta get through it and make things work. too much of a time, effort and money investment not to. plus i dont let it get to me too much. i have a fragile mind so i try to stay calm, fix my issues and get back to the job at hand.

and yes, it was a ripper weekend indeed! tons of fun on a good hill surrounded by good humans while ridin a sweet rig.
 

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trail fairy
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9,546 Posts
cactuscorn said:
it dug into practice time and unsettled some runs but ya gotta get through it and make things work. too much of a time, effort and money investment not to. plus i dont let it get to me too much. i have a fragile mind so i try to stay calm, fix my issues and get back to the job at hand.

and yes, it was a ripper weekend indeed! tons of fun on a good hill surrounded by good humans while ridin a sweet rig.
Ya I hear that, though its easy to over practice, I like to spend tim on the mountain chcking stuf out rather than doing heaps of runs, get quality runs in and a few fast runs to check everything is dialled and I can handle it at pace, normally results in a crash or too!

Definitley need to stay calm and confident, so sounds like ya got that down, one nice thing us older guys have with a bit of experience, understand fully the committment and ya put in definitley got to go to the end, good stuff not many stick it to the end these days esspecailly what you faced..

Good track/hill an peeps, plus rig al helps huh, wicked dude:thumbsup:
 

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Never enough time to ride
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1,575 Posts
Dang dude, I wish I could have made it out there with ya. Though from the sounds of it my big green fun maching would have come back in shambles. But from what you were saying on the phone my Codes would have probably been a bit more reliable!

At least you got your stuff sorted out and had a decent race run. Man I gotta get out there next year...hmmm there could be another project in my future!

happy trails...

squish
 

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Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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12,942 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
it woulda been very cool to have ya there. not only to share the fun but there were times i got pretty busy fixin and settin up bikes so i coulda used some good help. the amount of rigs that werent race ready, even my own, was nutty. showin up with a bald tire, no tubes and a busted der cable? the local shop not bringin tubes, rotors, pads, etc? yer kiddin me! i was handin out spares and sellin parts outta the car all weekend. i did manage to keep all my tools this time but then again i did all the work.

yer rfx woulda made it fine but ya always want more dont ya? i know im wantin a dhr more than ever right now. its all a matter of speed vs equipment. there were guys on hardtails and 3" xc bikes. that little shyt on the hardtail probobly beat my ass too. it was amazin how fast some of these young punks would attack the 1st chute before droppin outta sight into the trees. we were cheerin like hell at the start line all through the groms runs. wish i coulda watched from the course.

not sure if it was me or the master cylinders but im guessin i had seal leaks again cuz all the h/ware was tight and there was no air when i closeed it up yet it would push tiny bubbles up whenever i re-bled. glad i had spares but i coulda used the bb-7's if forced to and i woulda made those work. codes arent perfect either. a nib code blew a piston seal at acme on friday so they tossed a hfx9 at it and the kid ripped on sunday. everything breaks, mostly at dh races it seems. gone are the days of smooth courses and parts that last a weekend.

ps: theres talk of 1 or 2 open hill days before next years race. buy top end body armor and a full face before ya build or buy anything else. crashin is inevitable and you should see my bruises, cuts and scrapes after wearin full gear. how much for a leatt again?
 

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trail fairy
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cactuscorn said:
it woulda been very cool to have ya there. not only to share the fun but there were times i got pretty busy fixin and settin up bikes so i coulda used some good help. the amount of rigs that werent race ready, even my own, was nutty. showin up with a bald tire, no tubes and a busted der cable? the local shop not bringin tubes, rotors, pads, etc? yer kiddin me! i was handin out spares and sellin parts outta the car all weekend. i did manage to keep all my tools this time but then again i did all the work.

yer rfx woulda made it fine but ya always want more dont ya? i know im wantin a dhr more than ever right now. its all a matter of speed vs equipment. there were guys on hardtails and 3" xc bikes. that little shyt on the hardtail probobly beat my ass too. it was amazin how fast some of these young punks would attack the 1st chute before droppin outta sight into the trees. we were cheerin like hell at the start line all through the groms runs. wish i coulda watched from the course.

not sure if it was me or the master cylinders but im guessin i had seal leaks again cuz all the h/ware was tight and there was no air when i closeed it up yet it would push tiny bubbles up whenever i re-bled. glad i had spares but i coulda used the bb-7's if forced to and i woulda made those work. codes arent perfect either. a nib code blew a piston seal at acme on friday so they tossed a hfx9 at it and the kid ripped on sunday. everything breaks, mostly at dh races it seems. gone are the days of smooth courses and parts that last a weekend.

ps: theres talk of 1 or 2 open hill days before next years race. buy top end body armor and a full face before ya build or buy anything else. crashin is inevitable and you should see my bruises, cuts and scrapes after wearin full gear. how much for a leatt again?
How much without the leat is the question you should be asking, in comparison to the cost of the bike and yer ability to function, just saying!

Yeah I dunno why people turn up to te races unprepared someitmes they got the nicest kit and still yer handing stuff out all for helping but at times :confused:

Wierd on te brakes never had that issue with my sets, did you brake me in before the race:confused:

1st rule of racing never use anything new or untried, I know ya strapped for time though bud so not rarking on yer just saying DH courses are not a place to brake things in:D
 

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Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
i compare it to my health ins deductable. a leatt is well worth the cost.

brakes were properly assembled with new calipers, pads and lines and my older, non-leaking lever bodies and alloy lever blades. everything is '07 maggie bat. beddin in went well as did the test runs a cpl weeks ago. they did feel soft after testing but i didnt think i was goin so i blew it off till it was time to leave. had this issue before and magura sent a new body on warranty.

im with ya on new parts on race day and i only go that route when left without options. i dont even like new cables on race day much less a brake system, chainguide or suspension setup.
 

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Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
the expected pics never showed so heres a few i took of perry jewett, a local hot shoe, open land protector and overall great human. a guy im proud to call a friend. thanx for the beers, camp spot, food spot, line help, hard work on the event and all the good times pal. you were pinnin it!

keep in mind these pics do not do the cousre any justice whatsoever. this was the tamer stuff but i hear the bridge jump in the 3rd pic did claim more than a few riders. its a rutty, rooty, blind-ish entry with even more nastyness in the lz startin with a major g out. how folks jump into this mess i dont know. i rolled it with minimal air.

in the lift shot ya start to see how steep it is. we crossed from the trees on the left to the trees on the right and thats at the bottom where it begins to level out. spectators and staff found hikin the course difficult. even the ski patrol and medical folks were impressed. were talkin steep here kids.
 

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trail fairy
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cactuscorn said:
i compare it to my health ins deductable. a leatt is well worth the cost.

brakes were properly assembled with new calipers, pads and lines and my older, non-leaking lever bodies and alloy lever blades. everything is '07 maggie bat. beddin in went well as did the test runs a cpl weeks ago. they did feel soft after testing but i didnt think i was goin so i blew it off till it was time to leave. had this issue before and magura sent a new body on warranty.

im with ya on new parts on race day and i only go that route when left without options. i dont even like new cables on race day much less a brake system, chainguide or suspension setup.
I hear yer Pal, all good, sometimes stuff happens, the good thing is ya over came it and still took out first place thats the main thing and had a stoked weekend:thumbsup:

Course looks great from what I can see from the chair lift, nice shots day looked sweet! Well look fwd to seeing shots of you at some stage buddy!

Just good to seee yer hanging it out and having some RnR if not full on r n r chur...
 

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I'm more of a dog person
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i got a NIB Leatt that's for sale if ya want it CC. I bought it, took it home and adjusted it, tried it on for a little spin and decided that it's too restrictive for me. Makes me feel like it would CAUSE an accident, not what i'm looking for. PM me if interested.
 
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