The last time we reported from the Sedona Mountain Bike Festival was in November of 2021 and conditions were perfect with sunny skies, warm days, and cool nights. Bike demos and clinics were abundant; everything went according to plan. This year, however, with the festival back on its spring schedule during the first week of March, the weather wasn’t so cooperative. After a sizeable snowstorm caused the first day of the festival to be canceled, Josh and Spencer ventured up to the land of red dirt and vortexes to see how the subsequent days would be salvaged. Thankfully the event organizers, vendors, and festival-goers made the best of things and there were still plenty of bikes and products to show off along with abundant festivities to partake in. Let’s take a look below at what we found!
Vintage Bikes Are Compounded Stories: John’s 1980 No Serial Ritchey
Every bike has a story, but some intrinsically harbor more nuanced lore. As you might have noticed, over the past few years, I’ve acquired a few Ritchey frames from the 1980s. We’ve previously covered my Everest and the story of Tom’s early Bullmoose designs; I also have a 1985 Annapurna, and this no serial number 1980 Ritchey, which might be the best build yet.
This era of mountain bike design and development is my favorite. In the late 70s, guys like Joe Breeze built beautiful bikes inspired by balloon cruisers and klunkers. Tom Ritchey, inspired by the frenetic energy of the mountain bike genesis, began making fat tire frames in the late 70s. From 1980 through 1981, several bikes left Tom’s shop, including the fabled ‘chicken coop’ bikes, and a few were built void of any serial number.
This bike is the latter, and boy, does it have a story…
Riding into Motherhood with Amanda Chapin
I’m Amanda Chapin – I’m a gravel rider, mountain biker, cyclocross racer, tandem stoker, and sometimes even a roadie – plus I’m a new mom! And what an adventure it has been…
Readers’ Rides: Eric’s Rivendell Appaloosa – A Love Letter To a Build
Our Readers’ Rides showcases builds from the readership. Sometimes they’re succinct and to the point and other times, we get wonderfully penned novellas, waxing poetic about their beloved bikes. These submissions are part product review and part passionate penning. This week is one of those submissions. Eric’s Rivendell Appaloosa was featured in Wednesday’s Radar Roundup, albeit in video form, so let’s check it out in words and photos below!
John’s 1982 Ritchey Tamalpais Mountain Bike
Vintage mountain bikes have a special place in our hearts over here at The Radavist. From vintage klunkers to fillet-brazed beauts, it just seems like bikes from the early years of mountain biking were ahead of their time in a lot of ways. When the pandemic hit, I found myself browsing forums, eBay, and emailing collectors to build up some vintage rides. I was inundated with all the tech that was coming out, yet wasn’t available to consumers, and just felt like revisiting my passion for old bikes would reinvigorate my love of 26″ wheels and friction shifting. This Ritchey is the most recent of three bikes that I built up over the past few years in the pandemic and was by far the biggest undertaking for me. The process included painting some Tom Ritchey fillet Bullmoose bars to match and fixing some shoddy paint on the frame itself.
This bike needed a complete build kit, as I bought it as a frameset, so I spent a lot of time speccing the build while utilizing some of the NOS components I’ve been sitting on for a few years. The end product is something I’m truly proud of and Cari and I had a lot of fun with the photos here, so enjoy!
Improving on a Icon: A Review of the New 2022 Santa Cruz Chameleon 29er Hardtail Mountain Bike
Back in 2018, I reviewed the Santa Cruz Chameleon in the 27.5+ platform with a tricked-out build spec thanks to Hope Tech. Much like its namesake, the Chameleon really stood out from the crowd of other production hardtails on the market, making it a proper icon in the world of hardtail mountain bikes. Fast forward three years and I’ve had the new and improved 2022 Chameleon model under my butt for a few weeks now, have taken it on similar terrain as I did in Los Angeles with its predecessor, and have a few thoughts about the two models. Which one is worth your money? Read on below to find out…
The Stooge Scrambler Review: Evolution of the Modern Klunker
Rigid bikes. The roots of riding off-road, yet now the arena of weirdos, quacks, and masochists. Mountain biking started out long before telescoping forks and complex linkage designs, but the bikes of those early days are now a far cry from the activity most consider “mountain biking”.
Of course, those weirdos, quacks, and masochists still have a place in this world, and it turns out I’m one of them. It wasn’t always this way. I used to ride and write about my experience with suspension mountain bikes as a full time job. I could go on all day about spring curves and axle paths, dampers and volume spacers, sag and suspension setup.
But, in the past five or so years, my focus has shifted. I’d rather spend a weekend riding to small places and sleeping out under the stars than shuttling the local loamers and crushing parking lot beers. And in that time I’ve come to value a mountain bike that requires less maintenance.
Having ridden a lot of high end suspension bikes, I know what it takes to keep them running tip top – and I just don’t have the facilities to do that at home, nor the money to pay someone else to do it. A rigid bike makes sense for my sometimes bi-weekly, sometimes monthly mountain bike hobby.
Steve Potts’ Mountain Type II R Rigid Fork and Gravel Fork Is a Perfect Upgrade for a Gravel, Mountain or Touring Bike
Say you’ve got an older mountain bike frame or a newer adventure-style bike with a threadless carbon fork but you really want a steel fork on it. Well, look no further. Steve Potts has taken his tried and true Type II fork design and broken it into two categories, a Mountain fork, and a Mini Gravel fork. Both of which have cargo bosses on the fork legs, that iconic sleeved unicrown design and thru-axles. The retail for both forks is $500 a pop, which is not bad at all!
Mountain fork specs:
Steer tube 1.125″ x 350 mm long, ( threadless)
IS disc mount
Everything pack mounts
Standard rack mount ( Pass and Stow, etc.)
12 mm x 100 mm thru – axle
Axle to crown: 419 mm
Rake: 47 mm
Stock color: Silver crown, black legs:
Will fit tires up to 75 mm x 736 mm tall, ( 27.5 ” x 3″ 0r 29 ” x 2.25″ )
Gravel fork specs:
Same chromoly specs as the Mountain Fork but with:
Axle to crown: 401 mm
Will fit tires up to 700c x 50 mm
See the full lineup at Steve Potts Cycles.
One Day In The Bay With Rivendell on Black and White 35mm
Disclaimer: This happened before the Covid-19 outbreak
I am a team manager/photographer for Deluxe, a skateboard company out of SF. It’s always a trip to say it out loud or write it down on paper but I have my dream job. The posters and stickers that adorned my childhood bedroom walls came from the very place that I commute to every morning.
Global Cycling Network: Gravel Bikes Exist Because Mountain Biking Is Now Boring
While I thoroughly enjoy videos from Global Cycling Network and LOVE their videos. I’d also weigh in to say that ‘gravel’ bikes exist because road cycling is inherently more dangerous with drivers being distracted and rideshare apps causing erratic driving. That’s why I stopped riding road bikes as much, personally. Also, from my experience, most gravel riders I see have come from road riding and racing, not mountain biking. What about you? What’s your take on this topic.
Great video, team!
A Look Inside Santa Cruz’s Spokesman Bicycles Outpost and Their Wild Custom Builds
Santa Cruz has no shortage of bike shops. This sleepy little beach town might be known for its surfing and pesky vampires, but the road and mountain riding is exceptional. With a myriad of dirt and paved roads snaking their way through coastal redwoods, and dusty, steep mountain bike trails, any cyclist can spend days upon days exploring the terrain. Spokesman Bicycles is one of the powerhouse shops in Santa Cruz and just recently opened up what they’re calling Outpost on the West Side of town, right next to their friends Sawyer and Co, a surfing lifestyle shop.
MTB First Descent of Corbet’s Couloir at Jackson Hole
Let go of your imagination and hang on to your hat!
ENVE Introduces the MTN Stem
For those of you who wish those ENVE stems were designed for mountain riding, or came in mountain lengths, today’s your lucky day. Just announced this afternoon, ENVE has developed a new stem, designed specifically for their M-Series wheels and component range.
The MTN stem is available in 40, 55, 70 and 85mm lengths, with a 6º or -6º rise and a 37mm stack height. MTN Stems are due to hit dealers any day now, so head to your local shop for ordering.
Kyle’s Bridgestone MB-1 Singlespeed with White Industries
I’ll admit, this bike should have been shot with a Kleen Kanteen, not a Purist, but Kyle doesn’t like rules, at all, so it’s fine.
This MB-1 came into Golden Saddle Cyclery around the time Kyle sold his Saluki, regrettably. We’ve all been there before, you’re in a bind and you’ve gotta part ways with one bike to make ends meet, but luckily for Kyle, he kept in alignment with Grant Petersen‘s ideologies.
Bridgestone’s MB-1 hit at a unique time in mountain biking. Dirt drops were in and rigid was the (only) way. For Kyle, this bike became his around-town singlespeed, opting for White Industries components and Nitto’s Bullmoose bars. Topped off with Rubena Cityhopper tires.