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Scott Towne’s sorta bike check

31 08 2015

You might remember a post from a while back where we learned that Scott Towne was rollin’ on a Stolen 24.

Well, Scott’s been visiting the race track as of late, so he’s gone out and got himself a proper race rig.

His choice?

DK’s top-of-the-line Elite Cruiser (by way of Matt Bischoff).

scott towne race rig

A great bike, ready to race, “right out of the box”…as the bike industry is apt to say.

What caught my eye though, were the modifications he made to it.

Otherwise a stock bike, Scott says

[He] had to make a couple tweaks (daddy doesn’t do carbon forks) and of course, taller bars

A man after my own heart!

Traditional cruiser bars: who needs ’em?

And not “doing carbon forks”?

I’ve mused before over whether BMX should or should not reduce its carbon footprint. I have considered using carbon in the past but in the end have always stuck with chromoly.

Good old fashioned chromoly forks.

(Don’t call it a comeback…they’ve been serving us well for years).

Scott definitely has a sweet a ride with mods that I can only say are “cruiser revolution-approved.” (For further, evidence peep my race ride here, to see a similar set up…DK frame, cro-mo forks and big bars….we’re birds of a feather apparently…)

For more on Scott, check out his Tumbler and Instagram accounts for daily updates on his biking-related exploits/riding adventures.

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Everything old is new again

2 06 2012

Got the latest issue of Pull magazine  from USA BMX today.

Pull magazine covers are typically yawners but this month they did something interesting.

Working with Team Redman, they piled the Redman team into the company car to recreate an iconic 1978 Bicycle Motocross Action magazine cover.

If you’re old school and/or a BMX nerd, seeing this cover probably brought back memories of this cover, shot by none other than icon-in-his-own-right Bob “Oz” Osborn.

Actually, the whole “flashback” feel seems to (unintentionally…I think) run throughout the rest of the magazine as well.

Flip to the center-spread and you’ll find a two-page ad for chromoly forks…. It’s like 1987 all over again!  With month after month of ads featuring the latest and greatest carbon-fiber wonder fork, seeing an ad — a two-page one at that — for a chromoly fork seems quite out of the ordinary (but in my mind, definitely a refreshing change).

Then check out the back cover.

A Crupi ad featuring cruiser speed demon David Archibald promoting their cruiser lineup.

Seems like it was just yesterday that BMX Plus! ran an article talking about “The Death of the 24”. Now here we are, just a couple of years later and a major race company is buying up prime ad space to promote “the largest selection of cruiser frames and parts anywhere.”  Seems like the rumors of the 24’s demise were greatly exaggerated…and the popularity of cruisers are just as strong as they ever were.

The longer I stay in this BMX game, the more I see things come and go…and then come back again. Anybody else have the same experience?





Chromoly: don’t call it a comeback

28 03 2012

Is the race community’s love affair with the carbon fiber fork coming to an end?

It’s beginning to look that way.

Heck, when you have a big name like Olympic contender Mike Day saying things like, “always good to have a chromoly fork…and not have a road bike fork on your 20 inch” (when he’s being interviewed about GT’s 2012 lineup) then you know things are starting to shift.

On the Bodogs Race Report, in a post called Chromoly is the new carbon fiber, the writer talks about his own experiences with the different types of forks that are currently available:

Speaking only from experience I have personally witnessed no less than half a dozen cases where carbon fiber has failed, two cases where aluminum has failed (Both at the welds) and no cases where chromoly has failed.

He also sees a move back to chromoly in response to what he’s observed out at the track:

The new trend has returned to the beginning. Parts companies are building affordable chromoly forks that are stiffer and lighter than the most expensive carbon fiber forks on the market.

These same companies are also starting to play up the benefits of chromoly in their marketing. In a recent ad in Pull Magazine, CLIQ/Haro compared the chromoly Cliq fork to the Sinz carbon fiber fork.  At half the price, no rider weight limit and (as an added blow) a lighter weight overall it’s hard to argue that carbon fiber is a better choice. The ad finishes with the tagline,“Does any of this make sense to you, cause we’re still confused.”

Clever.  With more and more people getting the sense that they’ve been sold a bill of goods with carbon fiber forks, I think we’ll continue to see people voting with their wallets and going with the tried and true benefits of lightweight chromoly forks.

4130…It’s good to see you back at the race track, my old friend.





Should BMX reduce its carbon footprint?

30 11 2011

If you caught the footage from the ABA Grandnationals this past weekend, you no doubt caught AA Pro Denzel Stein‘s scary crash caused by his carbon forks snapping.

Truth be told, I’ve never really been a fan of carbon forks and things like this are not making me any more comfortable.

Die-hard carbon fork fans claim that carbon is stronger than chromoly but you never seem to see this level of catastrophic failure with a steel fork.

And the lightness argument? The gap between a good-quality chromoly race fork and a carbon fork is so small these days it hardly seems worth it from a safety and price perspective (carbon forks are generally the more expensive than other types of forks).

Word on the street is that some how an insert/sleeve to strengthen the steer tube was  not installed. That’s all well and good but if this kind of thing gets overlooked on a top pro’s bike…how many average joes are riding similar setups (without the insert/sleeve)? Seriously, it’s not worth the risk.

Ironically up until this year, Denzel was often seen running chromoly S&M forks on his factory Redline whip.

Did he make the switch due to pressure from his sponsor? Or maybe to cash in on co-sponsorship money? I wonder if he’s rethinking his decision and whether it was worth it.