Inaugural ride on the Roberts …


The First Ride

Finally, after months of planning and anticipation, I took the newly refitted Roberts for an inaugural ride.

I had it out briefly yesterday but it wasn’t correctly setup.  This morning I spent several hours tinkering with the seat post, saddle, stem and pedals.  Minor things to do but monumental in terms of comfort and power.  The seat post came down 1/4″.  The saddle forward 1/2″.  The stem up 1/8″.  And, the clip in pedals loosened.  Finally, it was ready for a ride.

A Lap Around Stanley Park

I decided to do a lap around Stanley Park.  One of my favourite routes.  It is a 30 km ride there and back with 2 long climbs, 1 fast descent and 5 km of rolling road.  A perfect first ride.  A bit of everything.  Up.  Down.  Flat.  An opportunity to get into every gear.

One Nice Ride

What a treat.  It was flawless.  The brakes were positive and balanced.  The shifting effortless, feeling very much like the Dura-Ace setup on the Garneau.  The compact chainring set was huge.  I didn’t expect it.  Climbing was easier.  A lower gear at a faster cadence.  I remained seated for the first climb, pedalling faster but at the same approximate speed.  I even tackled a few short steeper climbs (15-18% grade) on the way back.  They were work but very manageable.  And, standing climbs seemed easier.  I could stay up longer while maintaining a faster cadence.  It’s the 34 tooth chainring.  It is easier to turn over but, coupled with the right gear at the back, I can “dance on the pedals”.

I knew this would be a good ride but it was better than that.  Perhaps it is the history we share.  I have ridden for hours on this bike in many parts of the country.  It felt better than ever.  The indexed shifting and the compact setup make a huge difference.  The longer wheel base and steel frame is much more forgiving than the carbon Garneau.  This is one nice ride.  Not as fast perhaps but very comfortable and spirited.  I will ride it often.  Very often.  A terrific training bike.  I can save the Garneau and, the carbon wheels, for the dry, hot summer days.  And, it’s a great day tripper.  There are several items on my Cycling Bucket List suitable for this bike.

Do you have an old steel frame collecting dust in the garage?

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