In this Stooge Speedbomb review, Jason Fuller reflects on our collective obsession with ever-more-complicated bicycle technologies, and what led him to give up suspension for the simplicity of a rigid mountain bike. Beyond the retro-grouches and technophobes, can a rigid mountain bike be more fulfilling than one with suspension?
Remember a few weeks ago when we linked to the Tracker story on the Stooge Cycles website? Well, that should have been a hint or at least a wink wink, nod that Andy from Stooge was working on a Tracker-inspired bike! Yesterday he announced just that, the Dirt Tracker, so let’s check it out…
When Brooks England decided to resurrect the legendary B72 saddle ($190), the brand reached out to John to use his 1980 Ritchey as a model to showcase the saddle’s history of being mounted to some of the first mountain bikes. Then, to offer a modern comparison, they built up a stunning Stooge Cycles Speedbomb. The resulting builds are eerily similar in some ways and worlds apart in others, yet the Brooks B72 looks right at home on both bikes. Let’s check out the new B72, including John’s quick review, below.
Our Radar Roundup compiles products and videos from the ‘net in an easy-to-digest format. Read on below for today’s findings…
Those of you that have been to the Mid South‘s host shop, District Bicycles, are well aware of how much eye candy is on display there. Yet when I walked in the door this year, I was immediately drawn to one bike: Tyler’s Stooge CK Flyer. It just jumped right out at me with all its throwback, raw ti, gumwall, plus tire glory on full display. I spent some time documenting it that day, so you could spend some time ogling it from your desk this morning. Let’s jump right in…
This week’s Readers’ Rides comes all the way from Singapore. Acit’s Stooge Scrambler is super dreamy and he’s done a great job documenting it, so let’s just right in!
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.
If your jaw dropped when you saw the new Stooge Cycles Scrambler, then you’re not alone. This new frame was conceived in 2016 but for various reasons, never made it to fruition. Here’s the story from Stooge Cycles:
“The Scrambler, first and foremost, is a trail-shredding rigid bike, but unlike my other frames, it comes with all manner of mounts (rack and cage mounts on the biplane fork, triple cage mount x 2 on the downtube, bottle cage on the seat tube, rear rack mount and half-rack mount for saddlebag supports). I call it a radventure bike, an adventure bike you can still get rad on, still take around the old BMX track, but still ride into the sunset on in all-day-comfort with Knocking On Heaven’s Door playing in the background. It still has twin tope tubes but there’s room for a bigger bag (talking of which, Wizardworks are coming on board to produce a framebag for this. Hurrah for Wizardworks).
2 sizes this time around, an 18 and a 20. The ETT on both is 610 and 635 respectively. I wanted this bike to be a little shorter than the MK4 for a slightly more upright riding position. Coupled with the short chainstays this will feel really poppy and light on its feet. I’ve also opted for B+ as a primary wheel size. I love the agility this size offers and missed having a B+ bike in my line-up. The head angle on these is 67 degrees, so fair bit slacker than the earlier frames and the Speedball. I think it’s going to be a magic number. Of course, you can still run 29er on this, and if you do make sure the front tyre is a big as you can get hold of, preferably a Duro Crux (AKA the best front tyre in the world ever).”