akmal's bike park

akmal's bike park

Friday 31 December 2010

Adam Rides - straight line :)

Adam on his bike - one day after learning how to ride

Well done, only after a day learning how to ride. I was surprised when I came home from work yesterday and saw him pedaling quite fast in front of the house.

The next step: cornering, and proper braking/stopping.

More photos here.

Thursday 30 December 2010

29.12.2010 Adam Rides!

After braving himself up, and I helped with lowering down the saddle on his bike, he pedaled on two wheels yesterday evening. I can understand the feeling of falling down while learning to ride the bicycle without training wheels. Almost all of us got through that phase, hadn't we? Well, if you're learning to use clipless pedals, that's another phase, right?
It took us about half an hour going back and forth on the tarmac in front of the house. He balanced himself, me holding his saddle on the back while walking, and at last he made it. Just like my neighbour Jamsari taught me when I was 9 (yes, that's quite late), I held the saddle for a few runs. Then quietly I let go and Adam cruised by himself for a short distance.
It's nice to see him getting his confidence, and motivation ensued. When he broke the news to his Mak, he even mentioned of getting swimming lessons after this.
As a father, a tiny lesson there:
1. you have to let go.
2. you have to see him fall to get it going.
Adam as the student, I can see a few things in him:
1. he's brave enough to learn, in the first place
2. he's brave to take a fall
3. motivated after clearing a phase, and ready for the next
The missus was happy with the progress. This evening, the fun would continue. Oh, and a whole lot more, as has been drawn up by wifey. Bike excursions, etc., you know...
Well, one revolution at a time.
Have a great weekend, y'all.
And a happy new year.
May our future be blessed, insyaAllah.

Critical Mass Johor Bahru: 31.12.2010

I like the poster
They have it in cities around the world, and we have it in Putrajaya too.
And now, in JB.
Date: 31.12.2010
Time: 8.00pm (start to roll: not sure. haha...)
RV point: Danga Bay (skate park)
Route: Danga Bay - Pandan
Will you be there? Me, perhaps.
It's interesting how many of JB cyclist (and other engine-free ride machines) would gather and ride together.
More info:
Share the road.

boleh pergi ke tidak?

taklah jauh mana pun dari Pasir Gudang nak ke Adela tu, sebenarnya
Pagi semalam aku tengok kat senarai peserta yang dah mendaftar untuk GA MTB Ride 2011. Belum ramai lagi, cuma setakat 53 orang. Biasa lah tu, ramai yang akan buat keputusan saat akhir. Macam Plentong Epic Ride jugak, yang tersiar cuma lebih kurang 300, tapi masa pagi tu ada lebih 800 umat berbasikal.
Yang membuatkan aku teruja ialah nama aku dan empat makhluk yang mendaftar bersama adalah dari nombor 3 hingga 7. Dah tu, nombor 8 sampai 12 pulak kawan-kawan Pasir Gudang. Menariknya, semua tu dari nombor 3 sampai 12 tu semua brader-brader MMHE. Amacam? Aku cadangkan untuk jambori/race bermula dari tahun 2011 ni kita buat perubahan siket. Sapa yang daftar awal, ada dapat hadiah khas. Kalau boleh untuk 10, 20, bahkan 30 yang terawal mendaftar. Kalau tak dapat, untuk 6 yang terawal aje pun dah cukup bagus dah. Kan? Kann?
Tapi (ada pulak tapi tu...), aku secara peribadi ada sedikit masalah. Minggu lepas aku ikut rombongan meminang kat Pontian, pastu ada sedara belah Ayah jemput mulut, kenduri kawin anaknya pulak pada tarikh yang sama kat Plentong. Aaarrkkkk... terkesima aku kejap, sambil selamba je cakap 'aiseh... ada nak kena pergi Adela hari yang sama'. Boleh ke camtu?
Ada dua pilihan:
1. Lepak rumah, buat macam tak ada apa-apa, dan pergi kenduri pukul 12 camtu.
2. Pergi Adela, kayuh laju-laju tak hingat, besit balik rumah, mandi siap-siap semua bagai, pegi kenduri dalam pukul 3 camtu.
Untuk pengayuh tegar, semestinya pilihan nombor 2 tu la kan. Dari sekarang ni kena cargas berlatih lah nampaknya.
Harap-harap kalau ada VIP yang nak merasmikan kayuhan tu, mintak dapat datang awal dan lepaskan kami semua kayuh awal-awal ye YB Datuk/Dato'. Boleh kami balik awal. Dengar-dengar ada yang nak tuju ke gerai telur belangkas lepas kayuh tu.
Terima kasih sudi menyinggah.

Wednesday 22 December 2010

19.12.2010 Seri Alam Offroad - retracing PER 2010 route

As usual, I cycled to Ruza Café at Taman Scientex for the Sunday offroad dose. Not many riders around. Had my breakfast, and the 6 of us went off at 8.44 am towards Seri Alam. EG as the lead, followed by Tulang, myself, Yahaya, Atuk, and Mlake. Well, generally for most of the time, in that order.
The ride objective for that day was to follow the recent Plentong Epic Ride's route, covering checkpoints 1, 2 and 3. I personally like the idea, for I haven't got the opportunity to ride through the checkpoints.
7.4 km on road with a little bit of offroad cutting from Nusa Damai towards Seri Alam, we reached Cactus Inn. It's quite devastating to see the vast clearing of what used to be palm oil plantation. The area is for the development project of UiTM Seri Alam. We went down to the rubber trees and towards Plentong. Right at the T-junction, we met Sham on his Kawasaki who ventured the Plentong offroad alone.
After a much needed breather (for Mlake, especially), we parted ways and headed to checkpoint 1 which is not too far away. Much of the pink paper markings stapled to the leaves from the last 3 weeks are still there, aiding our navigation. The plastic wrapped distance marking towards CP1 were also intact.
Somewhere along the way from CP1 to CP2, EG met with an accident. His handlebar on the left end met with a big branch of a tree while negotiating a twist, speeding through the sweet singletrack. Fear struck as initially it was suspected a bone fracture on his left hand pinky. We splint his finger with a pair of sticks and wrapped with a gauze roll. After things settled, we moved on; of course, at a much slower pace this time.
I have to say that the singletracks are amazing. There were many sections that I have never ridden before. From CP1 to CP2, we had to carve Bukit Panjang. I looked forward to it, for it has been a very long time since I last went up. The other intention is to see how good Panaracer Rampage is in scaling it, the uphill is with a thin layer of moss over hardpack in the middle.
Well, the initial climb was not good. I dismounted prematurely at a jutting root crossing, and my handlebar rotated about 70 degrees too. After that, I climbed to the top without much problem. Had a breather beneath the pylon, then towards CP2.
By the time we reached CP2 (also serves as the same spot for CP4) it was already 12 noon. Unanimously agreed to call it a day and went out to Cactus Inn.
Personally, I would very much keen to complete the other CPs. Next time, perhaps in January, before the GA MTB Ride 2011 event. For this one, I enjoyed it tremendously.
Thanks for coming over.
Relish our rides.

Tuesday 21 December 2010

RTW 21.12.2010: L-Route with RTW Machine

Yes, I'm using the lazy/lateness route with my RTW Machine - rims wrapped with slicks this morning.
It used to be 'unrideable' using slicks before a couple of weeks ago; for there's a section of the still-under-construction stretch on the parallel highway of Pasir Gudang to Bakar Batu that's not paved yet - circa 20 meters of red earth. Its condition is the worst after rain, which we had plenty of during November and December. Now, it is already paved, though only with packed crusher run and sand.
I have cleaned up my Hollowpoint after the Sunday offroad, and wouldn't want to have dirt on it. Besides, it's been quite some time the RTWM has been resting, for mainly I have been denying its duty. Much of the time it's been standing idle with a few times in the recreational mode for Umar and I riding around the neighbourhood. Time for the both the bike and I to stretch it out.
However, in getting the bike ready, coupled with my unpreparedness, I got out of the gate at 7.17 am. That's late, and there's only one way to counter that, of course: the L-Route. My initial plan of going through the normal long route with slicks changed with a somewhat joy inside - I can have that nasi lemak en route. Hehe...
The journey was smooth all the way. The roads were quite dry and I reached office safely in less than half an hour (that's including a 2-minutes breakfast stop). I enjoyed the journey tremendously.
1. It won't be long now, until the day when the highway would be open to vehicles. I don't know whether cyclists would be able to hop on it and share (even a foot or two), while being safe to ride on without much hassle (crossing, etc.). I guess I'll have to wait and see, and find alternatives or leeways.
2. It is not quite a normal thing for motorists to enjoy the drive while going to work. I know, because I don't, even if the traffic is smooth all the way which would be only under 10 minutes for me. You know, it's like, "okay, safely arrived at the parking lot, not much to be joyous about". It's not that I'm not grateful that I had a safe journey with the car, just that it's boringly normal.
Yeah, I guess that's it.
With RTW, however, it's a 30-40 minutes of adventure.
Stats today:
Out from home
Arrive office
Ride time
25' 39"
Ave. speed
Max speed
Good doggies
tesco + L route,
 Yukon, slicks
Have a great day.
May your journeys accompanied with some sort of enjoyable adventure.

Manitou Magnum

bottomed out, but there's hope for a new lease of life
From the BBS chatbox a few weeks ago, someone showed his old skool Barracuda mtb through a link of a forum. Thumbing through that, I got a link to technical manuals of old Manitou forks. I happen to have one of them - Manitou Magnum - which came with the ProFlex frame from my brother Hafiz.
It would be nice to have the Magnum brought to life again, now that is is bottomed out due to the elastomer (in lieu of coil springs) disintegrated and turned to some sticky goo.
Fortunately, Wings-Suspension caters for elastomer replacement coils, for cases such as mine. However, Magnum is not listed in their offering for old Manitou forks. I've asked if they have one, and no reply yet. Well, perhaps the ones for Manitou 4 should be okay for Magnum. The next thing is of course, whether I could afford to have the replacement kit.
Another thing, though, the travel shall be around 50-60 mm only. Compare that to the current trend of having the minimum travel of 80 mm and normally 100 mm.
Big difference. Well, the motivation for this rebuilding? Purely from the novelty aspect, the ol' skool thingy.
Waiting patiently for this side project, if it would ever take off.
Thanks for coming by.
Have a great day!

Monday 20 December 2010

Giant's Maestro Rear Suspension

how 'bout that?
hmm... deliciousss.
graphics and info taken from Giant's 2010 catalog
not available at any Giant hypermarkets or supermarkets

Hollowpoint Graphics

Rob Axford of EPX Australia finally replied my email requesting for the graphics pack for Hollowpoint, two days ago. Alhamdulillah, yay! The whole thing - photos and post script files amounted to 16 Mb of zip file.
The next step:
1. Shall I leave the frame bare, or do I paint it? If I were to paint it, gloss black seems nice, understated and relatively easier to take care of. Matches with my black Epicon, too.
2. Get someone to make the decals.
That requires $ and some time.
Definitely not Skyway, it seems then.
Anyway, thanks to Rob for the pack.

Thursday 9 December 2010

09.12.2010 BBS offline - aaaarrrrkkkk!!

BBS default page as at 09.12.2010
Sejak semalam, hingga ke waktu ini, takleh nak melayan (melayari) BBS. Apa sebabnya, tak tahu pulak aku, dan aku biarkan setakat itu saja lah.
Aku tahu, pasti ramai yang merungut lesu atas ketiadaan sementara (harapnya lah) BBS ni. Tapi apa boleh buat kan, tunggu aje lah.
Harap-harapnya Kevin dapat bantu buat apa yang patut.
Thanks in advance, dude.

07.12.2010 - Skudai Trail Offroad Edisi Awal Muharram 1432H

Zul melayan Plastic Cup, dengan fullsus barunya
Awal Muharram 1432H, rakyat Johor bercuti.
Aku gantung basikal kat kereta (rak cap ayam kat belakang aje), dan memandu menuju ke Skudai. Sepatutnya berkumpul 7.00 pagi (awal banget!), tapi aku pukul 7.00 tu baru nak hidupkan enjin memulakan perjalanan (pemanduan), dan aku hantar SMS pada Ijat si tuan tanah Skudai Trail, bagitau on the way dah... (dah masuk kereta, kira dah on the way lah tu).
Ramai rupanya yang ada, untuk kayuhan pagi tu. Aku ingatkan cuma bertiga - aku, Ijat & Azam. Tujuh kesemuanya: Aku, Ijat, Azam, Haziq, Hafiz, Faidi & Zul. I like. Dalam masa yang sama, segan juga pasal sampai lambat.
Cuaca pagi tu memang bagus, alhamdulillah. Redup aje, dan tak ada tanda-tanda akan hujan.
Kitorang kayuh kat lingkaran luar dulu melalui projek terbengkalai, dan tak lama lepas tu dah sampai ke permulaan singletrack. Mula-mula sekali, Ijat ajak masuk ke Plastic Cup trail...
Mula masuk ke Plastic Cup, terdetik di hati bagai di alam yang lain. Dengan cuaca yang redup, ditambah rimbunan pohon getah tua, suasana di dalamnya sepanjang denai terasa nyaman dan segar. Ianya agak teknikal, tetapi boleh dikayuh jika cukup skill (bukan aku lah tu). Tak kurang mencabar juga, dengan laluan turun dan juga datar yang bersimpang siur. Aku suka bahagian cerunan turun beralun. Memang syok layan.
Habis Plastic Cup, keluar dan balik semula ke permulaan tadi, lepas tu sambung pulak ke Denai. Yang ni pun aku suka, pasal ada technical climbing. Dah tu disaji pulak dengan Drop Zone. Aku tak turun, cuma ambil laluan pintas sebab kat bawah tu ada lecak - tak nak kotorkan basikal (konon...). Pengakhir Denai: ada satu cenuram agak tinggi juga. Kalau aku tak cuba turun, tak best lah kan, datang dari jauh tapi tak cuba. Maka aku turun lah... Rasa macam laju aje, tapi tak tau lah kalau sebenarnya nampak perlahan.
Dah tu kitorang lalu Double Trouble. Aku pun tak berapa ingat, tapi ada lah juga lalu lereng-lereng bukit. Kat tepi semacam gaung, cuak juga kayuh singletrack tu.
Keseluruhannya aku suka dan akan datang berkunjung lagi ke sana kalau ada peluang, insyaAllah. Ada macam-macam, kebanyakannya teknikal, dihidang dalam pakej yang padat - kurang dari 10 km panjangnya. Ada juga beberapa laluan fast singletrack untuk pelesit-pelesit membesit. Tahniah dan terima kasih untuk Ijat, Azam dan orang Skudai (pemotong getah) kerana meneroka denai kat kawasan tu, dan sudi bawak aku kayuh sama.
Gambar apa yang ada, di sini.

Monday 6 December 2010

In Praise for Plentong Singletracks

the canopy at Plentong - one of my favourite sections
Much has been said about PER 2010, and all that came to my ears are good responses (so far). However, this one thing makes me feel elated, and at the same time a bit lowly for sometimes I take for granted my offroad rides in Plentong.
The rider/writer mentioned
I was riding behind Alex McNab on one of those singletracks when I told him how nice if we could trade RRI for Plentong! Meaning we needn't have to drive 4 hours and all those fabulous singletracks would be just in our backyard!
quoted by Yellow Manta, from PCC's Spokes n Nipples Weekly Newsletter 10 Nov 2010 (Issue 521-47-2010), pages 3-5.
Plentong singletracks are close to my house, and I could ride through it from my home without me having to spend a single sen on fuel. It is rather common for people not to know what kind of a gem they have in hand and treat it like some ordinary glass. It's the case of "it's greener elsewhere". You get what I mean?
Whenever time, circumstances and (especially) $ permits, I would sample trails that other riders ride for their normal weekend rides, and this usually comes in a form of a jamboree ride. A few that I like which are unique, and unlike Plentong trails - The Dream technical descent and Steroid Hill in FRIM, and the terraces of Bandar Tasik Puteri. If I get the opportunity, I would sample more trails and repeat those I mentioned. Still, Plentong gives me much satisfaction in terms of all-in-one offroad rides. As Azman of Element Cycles put it, "Plentong is your 'license' trail. Everything is there - mud, sand, lake, river, hills, downhills, singletracks, rock garden, you name it". Heck, there's even a badminton court - right after a series of singletrack downhill.
With that, and the limited opportunities now for my offroad rides, I would enjoy as much as I can those sweet trails in Plentong. I urge you to do the same, wherever you ride.
Have you been to Plentong?
the link is not a permanent link to the newsletter, thus newsletter date and number given for reference.

Saturday 4 December 2010

Review: The Sensus Black Grips

slip-ons by the sensus.
notice the cut guide line
Designed by Cameron Zink, he obviously knows what he wants in a pair of grips.

Simple, soft and tacky grips with flange. The pair looks long perhaps because there are no lockrings on either ends. Quite slim, too, and my fingers wrap around them nicely.

Installation is quite a job, and definitely not as easy as lock-ons. The inner diameter is designed to be smaller than the diameter of handlebar ends so that it would grip securely once installed. It has to be so because these are a pair of slip-ons. Don't worry, as the installation tips are included on the reverse of the packaging cardboard. Pretty good tip, I've never thought of using zipties to install slip-ons before this. Also, the rubber compound itself is tacky, adding to the grip.

Not much twisting after a couple of months' rides on my RTW Machine. Of course, there is some, and this could be remedied by employing zipties as a DIY lock-on at both ends.

ribbed for the sensation
These are a pair with flanges, with cut lines as a guide in case you'd want them off for clearing the thumbs to shift the gears. The wavy rib patterns are like old skool BMX grips, which I like very much. My thumbs are on a high rubbing on them while riding (!). Well, the real intention for that, I presume, is the grip (what else?) that it provides and, a bit of a squingy feel without being thick overall.

I used them on road, so far, with and without gloves, full and half fingers. I like them best with half finger gloves - for my thumbs, of course.

I removed them to install on my XC rig. Because of the tacky compound, it's quite hard to get them all. Impossible to slide out, but rolling them over (like condom), did the trick. Not to roll it completely though, for it would be impossible then to return it to the normal state. Just up until near the bar end, say 10 mm or so, and then slide them off.

Zink's 360 right after the Icon Sender
Check out the vid of Zink's winning run at Red Bull Rampage 2010.
He's got a pair of these assisting his grip on his 'bar (okay, that's a bit cheesy).

slip-ons installation - on the back of the cardboard
Also, a vid from pinkbike.com for grips installation.

Skyway Decals?

Skyway TA 25th Anniversary Frame
Anyone can help me with the decals? I'm thinking of slapping 'em up on the Hollowpoint, for old times' sake.

For the record, I've never owned a Skyway. Just borrowed one from my neighbour siblings Apai, Anis & Atei. Man, I love the tubing.

I was thumbing through the Rad clips on YouTube, and watched the Helltrack race. There was a rider wearing Skyway jersey, and blam!, I think it would be nice to put the retro decals on Hollowpoint's downtube and headtube since it's pretty naked right now (yup, it's pretty as it is).

Don't want to be a wannabe, putting up Santa Cruz or Trek or Cannondale or whatever else on my Hollowpoint. I just want it to be personal. Why not Hollowpoint decals? Well, I've emailed people from EPX requesting for some, and a guy from Malaysia who apparently did get something from EPX, but mine still unanswered.

Anyway, I'm happy with riding an 'unnamed' unpainted mtb. Some even asked me, is that Ti frame? Hehe... I wish.

The Skyway 25th Anniv. frame story here (2008). Interesting.

Friday 3 December 2010

Video: Mash SF + Lance at Austin, TX

Don't get me wrong. I don't really support fixies entirely, but this is Mash SF riding with Lance Armstrong around Lance's town.

Thursday 2 December 2010

Danny MacAskill - Way Back Home

Starts with a front flip, and ended with another.

Breathtaking, with the background music and awesome Scottish landscape.

Danny MacAskill's Way Back Home vid, by Red Bull.

Sit back, with a cup of tea (or coffee), and enjoy the serenity. Just in case, have a hanky handy in case you salivate.

The vid's link, at Red Bull's site.

Wednesday 1 December 2010

Plentong Epic Ride 2010

checkpoints and details
I arrived at Neo's place to gather with the trail crews for manning the CPs and trail works. We went in at around 7.00 am. Atuk and I are assigned to man the first fork. Basically to get the riders to flow to the correct trail (eventhough the trail marking is adequate). The other job there is to take off the markings once the sweeper (Tarmizi EG) passes us by. That site is quite near to the finish run and we don't want the incoming rider to take the wrong turn (and complete another run of 60 km) instead of pedaling home.
Jai came by and eventually we agreed for him to man the post. Atuk and I proceeded to another junction not far ahead to station there. Again, to get the riders to flow to the right turning. The first four riders with Ali Tamago 5 in the bunch came swooping by at 8.21 am. EG came by quite late as there were 3 riders from S'pore who reached Plentong only after 8.30 am.
We proceeded to the trail en route to CP1 and stopped at a junction to re-route the trail. Cleared off the markings and laid down new ones for the Chicken Run for riders coming in from CP1. This time Fadzil and Zaid were with us too. Job done, and we headed to CP1.
We arrived at CP circa 10.00 am. I met a few familiar faces, including Fuad, Jai (again, on his motocross), Nassim, Sham Rudy and few others. Heard about a rider having a gash on his leg from a fall over there.
Not long after that, Panjang came by and we proceeded to CP5 straight away. I love the uphill towards CP5. However, there's a caveat. You have to go through some sort of a swamp before you could start climbing. My otherwise clean bike was instantly splattered with muck.
I spent quite some time up there, waiting for the first rider to arrive. At 11.33, the first rider who completed all CPs arrived. Acai had to paste the green spot on his riding passport on-the-fly, for the caucasian didn't want to stop at all. Tulang the ABS rider came by at 12.09 pm. Not bad, he's among the top 20 finisher.
At around 12.30 we went down towards the starting/finishing point and browsed around the gallery. There were a few stalls that day. Cycling Asia, Nur Ikhsan (Md Noor), GA MTB (ride registration), Angah Bike Shack, Jean Bike Shop (Jason), mj@bp's (finall, get to meet the person), Red Bull (free drinks). Did I miss any?
I lingered there until 1.00 pm and pedaled home to the house in Plentong. Not too exhausting, for I cycled only around 16 km. As always, I couldn't take the heat from the sun. It's too taxing for me. Anyway, the weather was nice all throughout the event, before it rained quite heavily a few hours after that.
Anyone could attest that the organisation and execution of the event are tops. From the few feedbacks I had from riders at CP1, they enjoyed the trail eventhough I could see their energy drained. I missed the lucky draw event. Better that way, for I would be really envious with the person who brought back a complete bike - Giant full suspension Yukon FX, sponsored by Angah Bike Shack.
Were you there? How was your experience riding the Plentong Epic?
If you've missed out the ride, make sure you free up your schedule for the next one.
Read some of the reviews and feedbacks:
photos from my camera.

Monday 29 November 2010

RTW 27.11.2010 - Haris' First RTW

Helmetless rider on his maiden RTW
I have a RTW buddy now, at least for half of the way to and fro via the L-Route.
Saturday 27/11, I RTW with Haris for his maiden ride to the office. As agreed (and on time), I reached his house at 7.15 am. Snapped a few photos, and we're off 3 minutes later.
From his house, the route is virtually flat at the beginning, going to the nearby flats (pun intended!), and a gentle slope downhill towards the jetty at Sungai Rinting before Kampung Pasir Gudang Baru. After crossing the narrow bridge is a short, steep climb. Then it goes downhill again, gently, and flat all the way to the office.
Total time from Haris' place to the office is 15 minutes leisure ride. Less than 10 cars in total passing us by, including the short stretch of Pasir Gudang Highway (around 300 meters). A reason obvious enough to take up RTW.
No stats, accidentally deleted.
Other photos are here.
Have a safe ride.
Thanks for coming around.

PER 2010 - Bertaraf Dunia (kata HM)

Heheh... gua dah kata dah...
Tapi listing masa tu tak termasuk daripada Brazil.
Macamana pulak boleh Hairan Metro letak 'Kejohanan', gua memang heran.
scanned newscutting dari Mr. Ayub CA

Saturday 27 November 2010

See Ya!

See y'all at Plentong Epic Ride 2010.
I won't be riding along, but insyaAllah manning checkpoint 1.
Enjoy your weekend rides!

Thursday 18 November 2010

GA MTB Ride 2011 - 30.01.2011

Tahun depan punya cerita...
Ia akan kembali!
Aku turut serta kayuhan ni sebagai pembuka tirai untuk kayuhan luar kawasan tahun ini, tapi masa tu namanya GA Fun Ride (GA = Gugusan Adela). Memang cun, aku enjoy sangat masa tu.
Masih terlalu awal, tak tahu apa inti cerita untuk kayuhan anjuran untuk edisi kedua ini. Yang nyatanya, akan ada perubahan lah, melihatkan dari yuran penyertaannya. Kali ini RM40, berbanding RM10. Tapi tak boleh lah nak harapkan sampai 4 kali ganda lebih best (atau bukit 4 kali ganda tinggi, jarak 4 kali ganda jauh), kan? Jarak kayuhan 50 km, up 25% dari yang pertama. Harga nasik ayam takkan naik tinggi macam tu kan. Ni aku saspek disebabkan ada bagi t-shirt, goodies, medal dan cabutan bertuah (eh, tahun lepas pun ada) Maknanya penganjuran dah up siket lah. Yang penting, trail mantap. Aku yakin diorang buat lebih baik dari yang lepas.
Tarikh tutup penyertaan 31.12.2010. Ada masa lagi ni, nak kumpul $. Sehari singgit, insyaAllah cukup siap ada belen lagi, sikit-sikit tu.
Apa-apa pun, aku memang teruja untuk turut serta insyaAllah. Dan aku yakin, kali ni ramai lagi yang akan turun ke Gugusan Adela. Dengar-dengar Tinker Juarez pun dah kontek Joni dah tu, tempah nombor plet dengan nak bukak gerai mihun.
Lawat sini: http://gamtbride2011.blogspot.com untuk maklumat mutakhir.

Saturday 13 November 2010

RTW 13.11.2010 - Ridge: Haris' Rig

It's a Saturday, and it has been quite a while since I last RTW on a Sat. The main factor: I hate to be baked under the scorching afternoon sun.
Today it's different, it's a test ride. I assembled my officemate Haris' Raleigh Ridge. Build from largely second hand parts, except for the saddle, pedals, tire tubes and rear brake cable. My personal thanks go out to Fuad of MAIJ for selling me dirt cheap near complete bike parts. In turn, the low cost is transfered to my client. All in the cause of inducting one new rider in the office, for RTW.
The bike is a hardtail 8 speed with v-brake setup. Basically it'll be used on the L Route. From Haris' house, it'll take him max 15 minutes, to the office. That's the main motivation for him to start RTW, and so I'll have a riding buddy soon.
The bike is fairly light (that's according to Haris; I didn't weigh it). For me, it is not. Well, he's a newbie, perhaps excited with it. Anyway, light is not what you get for very much less than RM1000.
The ride is quite good. Although the BB's bearings are kaput, the pedalling is not uncomfortable at all. However, I'm going back to the bike shop to discuss further on the BB. Shifting is smooth, but there's a minor glitch on the RD setting (if you've been following me, that's my specialty). Brakes are good with ample stopping power. Overall it's a rideable bike, good for the purpose. His only concern is the handlebar could be better if it is wider. So I'll be looking out for one.
Stats for today:
no computer installed on the bike
Out from home: 0715 hours
Arrife office: 0746 hours
Door-to-door: 31 minutes
Good doggies: one busy momma
Photos? Nanti nanti lahh...
Have a good weekend, y'all.

Wednesday 10 November 2010

RTW 10.11.2010 - Feeding the Crave

6.40 am and I thought that it would be good if I could RTW this morning, the first for this week. I'm suffering from lack of endorphin. Bike's gleaming ready from Sunday's wash after the offroad ride. Gloves, pants and jersey are all smelling fresh.
But, I have to send Umar to his babysitter's house and come back home in time. Decision has to be made real quick, for sending and getting back home would eat up precious 18 minutes (if the traffic is smooth and I could maintain 100 km/h on the road).
Suddenly it entered my mind that it has been a week since I had that awesome nasi lemak at Taman Rinting. So that was the deciding factor, made in two minutes. It'd be satisfying two cravings in a go. How nice.
Eventually I went out of the gate at 7.17 am - certainly I failed to maintain 100 km/h, and the lights were not green along the way. Hence, I took the easy route - Tesco Seri Alam and crossed the interchange to Taman Rinting. Pit stop: the nasi lemak stall.
I don't know how the seller justifies the price, but it's quite peculiar to me.
The 'nasi lemak telur' is RM1.50; nasi lemak with a slice of cucumber, sambal, fried peanuts and some anchovies, and a whole boiled egg.
The 'nasi lemak biasa' is RM1.00; nasi lemak with a slice of cucumber, sambal, fried peanuts and some anchovies, and one half of boiled egg.
50 sen for one half of boiled egg is rather expensive!
Obviously I went with nasi lemak biasa, with lots of sambal. Its sambal is nice, reminds me of the nasi lemak by one akak tomboy in front of Wisma Technip in KL.
Continued the ride via the L Route, and I was greeted with mud at the unpaved section. It has been raining these past few days, and that's the result. I never imagined it could be like that, and have to accept the prospect of my bike (and quite possibly, shoes) getting dirty.
Well, it's not like I've never encountered such thing during offroad rides, but hey, during RTW I like it to be as clean as possible. Not so nice to haul a bike with mud-clogged knobby tyres up in the building and park it in the pantry. After all, the bike was gleaming clean when I went out of the house.
I finished with my shower at around 8.00, and had the awesome nasi lemak biasa afterwards.
So there I went, two cravings satisfied.
Stats today:
Out from home


Arrive office




Ride time




Ave. speed


Max speed




Good doggies



tesco + L route,

 Hollowpoint, knobbies
Thanks for coming over.
What's your RTW adventure today?

Essential Roadside Repair Clinic

An officemate, fellow RTW rider, encountered a broken chain not long after pedaling out from his house to the office yesterday morning. The nearby bike shop in Taman Chendana opened quite early, circa 9.30 am.
Two things can be avoided, with some essential roadside repair knowledge, skills and necessary spare bits with tools:
1. much delayed journey
2. cutthroat fixing fee
It was very unfortunate that he had to take a half-day off due to that. What's equally surprising is that the shop charged him RM5 (!) for the job.
With that, I'm planning for an Essential Roadside Repair Clinic soon.
Tentatively it will cover the common repairs such as fixing a broken chain (yes, you guessed that right), changing inner tube, how to patch a tube and some tips and tricks.
The plan is to do it at the parking lot of Bukit Layang Layang Pasir Gudang (nearest to Darul Hanan Orphanage), on a Sunday morning.
You don't have to pay any fee, just pay your attention.
Oh, and you need to bring your own essential repair kit, tools and spare bits too.

Tuesday 9 November 2010

Plentong INTERNATIONAL Epic Ride 2010

Looking at the nationality of the event participants, I think it should be renamed as Plentong International Epic Ride 2010.
Largely Malaysian, there are also riders from various countries who have registered to take part. My guess is most are expatriates in Singapore, as I gathered from last year's chat during 2009's Epic Ride.
This year, there'll be riders of these nationalities (as of today):
Hong Kong (Hongkese?)
The registration closing date is coming to a close, on 13th November.
Be a part of the event. Come down to Plentong.

Rubber Snakes by Velo-Re

metalhead rubber snake for your waist
Cheap? Not so.
Cool? Definitely.
Obsession statement? You bet.
Wash before wear, though.
Sertu, much better. Pay attention to the small holes and crevices - particles of dog poo may still be present.
More of its siblings (and cousins) in the snakepit here.
photo taken from velo-re website

Monday 8 November 2010

07.11.2010 - Seri Alam offroad - Epicon!

Tak ramai yang turun kat Kafe Ruza pagi semalam. Lepas sarapan, lagi sikit pukul 9, kitorang gerak bertujuh. Ok lah tu.
Dari 7 tu, 3 basikal guna Epicon siap dengan lockout remote control. 1 lagi XCR (SR Suntour jugak tu) pun ada remote control juga. 3 lagi RockShox apa tah, tak berapa ambik tau sangat.
Sepanjang kayuhan, memang rider-rider Epicon kat depan aje manjang. Naik bukit pun iya, turun bukit pun iya, flat section pun iya jugak. Toleh-toleh belakang, rider lain dah tertinggal dah. Terpaksa kitorang tunggu kejap.
Banyak kali jugak ride leader yang guna RockShox dan berGPS asek-asek suruh patah balik. Bila dah macam tu, rider Epicon automatik jadi sweeper lah kan, kat belakang pulak. Lantas rider-rider Epicon mencium bau konspirasi dari rider-rider RockShox. Tapi macamana pun, rider-rider Epicon tetap di hadapan semula, tanpa disedari menyelinap di celah-celah rider-rider RockShox. Naik Bukit Anjing pun siap boleh lumba lagi tu.
Ada ura-ura akan ditubuhkan Kelab Pemilik Epicon.
Berbagai aktiviti dah dirancang, termasuk rumah kelab, sticker (untuk kereta, fork, helmet, dahi), t-shirt, pertandingan pimp your Epicon, klinik selok-belok Epicon, lawatan ke kilang, mesyuarat agung tahunan berserta lucky draw, dan macam-macam lagi.
Amacam, berminat?
Dapat Epicon dulu, brader.
p/s: Nombor ahli dari 0001 hingga 0003 kitorang dah reserve.

Thursday 4 November 2010

Review: Deity Classic Grips

Deity Classic Grips - clean looking and, well, grippy
I got these about a couple of months ago, and has been using them on my XC rig since then. Offroad and on road use, full finger and half finger gloves, even with bare hands.

I'm not sure of the real function for the flanges on the inner end of the grips; and on these Deitys, they are not as tall as the normal ones you'd find on BMX bars. The design is as such so that it would not hinder the thumb movement and also not to restrict the shifter levers.

These are lock-on type secured on both ends with an allen key, and so they do not twist on the handlebar should you handle them roughly while gripping through offroad (although white knuckling is not really a good habit). Bar end closures are secured with an allen key, the same size as for the lock on rings.

The looks are decent and the build quality is good, with no visible untrimmed edges. The diamond knurled surface on the grips provide sureness along with the tacky rubber compound material. Be it with or without gloves, I get good grip on them even when my palms are sweaty. They are not too soft while not too hard or plasticky, and I guess Deity nailed it on the compound recipe. The design is simple and clean, with no assymmetrical details whatsoever. Just plain, diamond knurled profile surface, flanged lock-on grips.

I'm loving these now, for the grip it provides and its size fits my hands well - lengthwise, and diameter too. I find myself resting my thumbs' inners on the flange; and it feels, well, secure. Sort of.

See Deity's product page.

Wednesday 3 November 2010

Downgrading - Epicon 120 mm with remote lockout & rebound

SR Suntour Epicon with remote lockout - does the job well
ziptie kat kaki kanan tu naik sampai atas - kayuhan Burung Hantu 2010
RockShox Revelation 409 100-130 Dual Air U-Turn aku menghadapi masalah. Anjal hanya setakat 30-40 mm. Apa barang macam tu, dah lah nak dibawak untuk Burung Hantu 2010. Maka Epicon 120 mm dengan remote lockout dan rebound adjust dari basikal isteri menjadi ganti.
Istimewanya, Epicon tu ada fungsi lockout. Hehehh... memang aku sangat suka. Tambah pulak kat handlebar dah banyak ruang sejak guna Matchmaker, maka tak ada masalah untuk letak remote control lockout. Seperti Revelation juga, ada fungsi rebound. Aku cuma letak setting di tengah-tengah.
Pagi Jumaat lepas, kebetulan cuti, aku buat proses pemindahan dan tanggalkan Revelation tu untuk dihantar servis (bila ma$a entah nanti). Dah siap tu, terus aku bawak untuk diuji. Hajat di hati nak masuk trail pendek jongkang jongket, tapi masa tak cukup untuk itu. Pandu-uji hanya di sekitar kawasan rumah. Boleh lah, ada drop dan cenuram dalam sekaki untuk aku uji kebolehan.
Aku isi spring angin dengan tekanan sekitar 80-100 psi. Ternyata tak menghampakan, Epicon tu sangat anjal dan fungsi lockout berjalan dengan lancar mengikut kemahuan aku. Memang aku suka betul.
Sepanjang Burung Hantu 2010 Sabtu lepas, aku guna sehabis baik lockout tu, dan aku rasa memang ia banyak membantu aku sepanjang kayuhan. Asal naik bukit aje aku lockout, atas jalan tar aku lockout, malah denai rata pun aku lockout juga. Terkadang ada masa terlupa untuk anjal bebas, tapi disebabkan remote control tu mudah dicapai maka bukan satu masalah besar walaupun sedang menurun bukit (yang tak berapa curam lah).
Dengan Epicon ni, aku suka sebab ianya ringan - berat sikiiit je dari Revelation, mengikut firasat kasar, timbang gitu gitu dengan cuma mengampai di kedua belah tangan :)
Lagi satu, dia agak anjal (plush). Aku tak berapa pasti apakah tekanan udara yang sesuai (dan patut) untuk berat badan aku 70 kg dan untuk kategori XC. Aku letak 100 psi, duduk atas basikal untuk 'sag' dalam 25%, dan biarkan aje. Aku rasa masa aku kayuh sepanjang Burung Hantu tu, memang habis 120 mm travel tu digunakan. Mungkin nak kena cuba 120 psi pulak, tengok macamana. Tapi setakat ni memang aku suka. Sekurang-kurangnya lebih baik dari Revelation tu lah.
Bukannya nak kata Epicon yang jauh lebih murah dari Revelation tu adalah lebih baik. Tidak. Revelation tu aku beli atas tangan, mungkin dah ada rosak sikit-sikit dan aku tak dapat nikmati sepenuhnya. Cuma, dengan Epicon yang murah ni pun aku dah dapat nikmati kayuhan 45 km (termasuk lebih 10 km atas jalan tar), maka di situ ada mesejnya.
Mesejnya (mungkin hanya untuk XC), Epicon does the job well. Bagaimanapun, dari segi ketahanan, mudah selenggara, dan lain-lain aspek dalam menilai sesuatu barang, belum teruji lagi.
Bukanlah aku nak kata tak perlu untuk membazir $ untuk mendapatkan fork yang mahal dari RockShox, Fox, Marzocchi, Manitou, Magura dan lain-lain lagi. Ada kelebihan masing-masing, dan dari aspek yang berbeza. Aku pun tak berpeluang untuk mencuba yang lain-lain tu lagi setakat ini. Maka, aku bukan di posisi untuk membanding.
Natijahnya, Epicon yang ada di basikal aku sekarang ni, sudah cukup untuk aku berkayuh XC.
Nak juga aku cuba SID World Cup ka, Manitou R7 MRD ka...

Monday 1 November 2010

ECC Burung Hantu Jamboree 2010 - 30.10.2010

Aku pergi, aku kayuh, aku habiskan kayuhan dalam pukul 12 malam, pengayuh ke 458 sampai ke garisan penamat, tak dapat apa-apa untuk cabutan bertuah, dan AKU PUAS.
Itulah cerita pendeknya. Sedikit lebih terperincinya (tapi tak berapa sangat pun), kat bawah ni. Gambar pun tak ada.
Petang tu hujan, bawak ke maghrib masih renyai-renyai. Hah! memang 'enak' lah tu berkayuh pada malamnya. Akan ada lumpur, dan kebarangkalian kayuhan terganggu disebabkannya memang tinggi. Terimbau episod kayuhan KLMTB Epic Hash yang lalu. Getus hati mengharapkan tak begitu, dan ternyata ia berbeza.
Kali ini aku kayuh dengan optimis. Aku nak nikmati setiap detik dan setiap kayuhan. Pada masa yang sama, aku nak kayuh laju dan sepantas mampu. Eh, sudah berapa lama punya training, kan...
Aku mulakan kayuhan dengan Panjang, Yad dan Hafiz (member Yad). Ikut gerombolan, dan kayuh laju menghirup udara nyaman atas jalan tar. Sebelum masuk turun offroad, aku berhenti di tepi jalan mengetatkan faceplate pada stem yang longgar. Si Panjang dan Yad pantas aje mengayuh masuk offroad meninggalkan aku. Keselamatan harus dijaga, maka aku tak hirau masa yang terbazir.
Offroad menghidang lecak dan lumpur, hasil dari hujan siang tadi. Masing-masing berkayuh licin dengan dua biji donut melungsur malam. Sepanjang kayuhan, mahu tak mahu, keadaan trek yang licin dan tayar donut memang lumrah. Kalau patah hati, memang menyumpah kerana sepanjang 5 checkpoint dan 45 km sentiasa ada keadaan itu. Tekad hati, aku terima keadaan dan mencuba yang terbaik. Memang aku beri yang terbaik. Maka kayuhan aku terasa puas.
Hanya sekali aje aku turun dari basikal dan buang lumpur yang melekat pada FD. Itu aje, malas aku nak bersihkan sangat, pasal aku jangka memang akan berulang lagi sepanjang kayuhan. Ubatnya: berkayuh sepantas mungkin dan biarkan momentum pusingan roda membuang lumpur terlekat. Untuk lain kali, harus dipasang fender untuk tayar depan. Ada sekali tu aku dok terkenyit-kenyit mata kiri dek pasir yang masuk ke mata.
Aku cuba kayuh sepantas mungkin, sebab kalau nak nikmati hidangan pancaindera pun, tak berapa dapat sangat. Cuma dingin hutan waktu malam yang aku rasa, dan lumpur menyelaput kulit yang terdedah. Tapi, pada satu lapangan tu aku terhenti, bila aku ternampak bintang di langit. Shahriman menegur sambil dia teruskan berkayuh. "Dah lama tak tengok bintang", aku jawab pendek. Aku biarkan pengayuh yang di hadapan hilang, dan kebetulan untuk masa yang panjang tiada pengayuh di belakang. Aku keseorangan, dan mendongak menikmati hidangan bintang bertaburan di langit malam.
Betul, memang lama dah tak tengok bintang. Aku lupakan sekejap 'berkayuh sepantas boleh', dan 'berburung hantu' sebentar. Lama juga tak berburung hantu. Dah 20 tahun jugak lah.
Kalau ikutkan takrif Burung Hantu di kalangan geng-geng JBS WP dan Pelapis KSKL dulu, cenggini:
Selalunya masa berkhemah, lepas tengah malam, kami akan berjalan menyusur denai. Selepas agak jauh dari tapak perkhemahan dan suasana sunyi sepi, Penghulu fasilitator akan meletakkan seorang demi seorang di sepanjang denai. Jarak di antara individu agak jauh, kira-kira 5 minit berjalan. Lepas dah tinggal kat port masing-masing, dibiarkan lama, barang sejam dua. Objektif Burung Hantu ada banyak. Yang utamanya untuk mengenal diri, berani tak berani. Jugak, dengan sunyi malam tu mudah untuk muhasabah diri. Tapi biasanya kecuakan tidak memungkinkan untuk itu lah. Lagi satu untuk tengok samada jujur atau tidak. Jugak, kecuakan akan buatkan ramai yang berjalan dalam gelap mencari kawan di depan atau di belakang.
Kalau nak cerita bab Burung Hantu ni, panjang lagi. Tidak di sini. Kita teruskan cerita pasal kayuhan haritu ye...
Taklah lama sangat aku tengok bintang. Rasa nak aje berbaring di tepi dan kira bintang, tapi mana boleh. Kang badan dah sejuk, degup jantung pada kadar berehat, jadi malas pulak nak berkayuh kang.
Kayuh, kayuh, kayuh, tiba-tiba sampai checkpoint. Minum 2-3 teguk air, makan sebijik pisang. Ulang lagi, sampai habis kat garis mula/penamat. Aku sampai garis tamat, ambik lucky dip dapat lah bottle cage (nak beli? aku jual...).
Kayuhannya taklah 100% offroad, mungkin 75% aje kot. Banyak juga atas jalan tar. Tak terlalu teknikal, cuma dek selut dan longkangan yang dibelasah oleh pengayuh di depan memerlukan penumpuan. Nak kayuh perlahan, jawabnya gedebab lah. Nak kayuh laju, harus ada fokus. Dan set lampu yang baik.
Disebabkan kayuhannya di waktu malam, maka kurang rasa haus dan penat dek panas matahari tak menjadi isu. Sesuai untuk aku. Rasa menyesal pulak berbekal air kosong dalam botol air pada kerangka basikal. Di checkpoint 5 aku buang air tu, dan kurangkan berat 750 gram. Nak minum pun, tak lalu dek lumpur yang melekat. Lagipun air mineral sentiasa ada di setiap checkpoint.
Dari checkpoint 5 ke garis tamat harus berkayuh atas tar. Aku pecut selaju boleh, demi mengejar Dino yang tinggalkan aku masa aku dok sibuk dengan air tadi. Punya lah laju, tak nampak kelibat walaupun aku tak berehat dari memecut sepanjang tu. Aku sampai pukul 12:12 minit (ikut jam aku lah), dan dapat medal dengan pelekat hijau nombor 458. Ok lah tu, top 460 riders.
Basikal punya lah kotor, memang harus basuh. Terjumpa si Ben budak JB, dia tunjuk kat aku tandas tempat dia basuh basikal. Ramai jugak dah beratur situ. Aku pun turut beratur lah, Yad pun ada. Ada dalam sejam juga tu, sebelum giliran aku menyental bersih selut dan lumpur dari basikal. Dah beratur punya lama, takkan basuh ala kadar aje ye tak?
Habis basuh, penganjur tengah baca nombor untuk cabutan bertuah dalam gelap. Menarik juga hadiah, besar-besar. Yang aku ingat, ada bike rack Thule, XT groupset, complete bike Raleigh (hardtail, fullsus). Satu pun tak mengena kat aku. Takpelah, kalau dapat pun, benda tu ada yang aku dah ada, ada yang aku tak boleh nak gunakan. Nanti jadi tamak aje. Cheh! Kunun...
Secara keseluruhannya, aku memang enjoy dengan jamboree ni. Pilihan trail adalah bagus - open, tak terlalu teknikal (dah malam, nak buat teknikal memang tak sesuai pun), 95% boleh dikayuh, bukit tak mencanak dan bersiri, pengayuh pun sporting, pengurusan checkpoint mantap, trail marking bagus (aku tak ada tersilap arah), plet untuk nombor peserta berkualiti, parkir kenderaan banyak, dan banyak lagi yang boleh dan patut dipuji. Syabas untuk semua pengayuh dan terutamanya pada ECC untuk Nite Jamboree 2010 ni.

Thursday 28 October 2010

RTW 28.10.2010 - slacks

the stretch on the L Route - all for me!
It's the third RTW for me this week, and still in training mode in preparation for ECC Burung Hantu 2010. Albeit, not intense this morning. Just that I'm resting my RTW Machine for this week (and last week), out with full knobbies on Hollowpoint and hydrobag on my back.
While showering this morning, I decided to ride with office pants instead of padded shorts. I decided not to have another shower at the office, but only to shampoo my hair to get rid of the smell (from smoke, sweat) and the helmet hair. However, I donned a jersey with back pockets, for 2 purposes:
1. Upper body will be sweaty no matter how relaxed I'll be pedalling. Perhaps due to humidity, and especially so when I'm stopping at the traffic lights.
2. I need to flash out my workers pass/ID upon entering the gate. Putting it in my back pocket would be more secure, and faster for me to whip it out while rolling.
In order for me not to sweat as I would normally do, the pedalling is quite relaxed, and I chose to take the flattest route. It's a combination of my normal route, and the new L Route. Coincidentally, it's a bit shorter (by about 2 km) than the normal route. Instead of going to the Suria neighbourhood in Seri Alam, I went uphill to Tesco Seri Alam, continue towards Taman Rinting, another short uphill to Kampung Pasir Gudang Baru after the small bridge at the jetty, and take the L Route to the office.
The average speed with knobbies registered at 21.3 km/h, which is quite fast for a relaxed ride. It goes to show that the route is quite flat. There are only 2 small hills along the way, which I climbed with low gears and high cadence without much strain for the objective of the ride this morning is not to have my bottoms sweaty.
I reached office 31 minutes after I left home. Took me only 5 minutes to shampoo, comb my hair and put on a collared t-shirt. My usual shower and change regime would normally take about 10 minutes.
Now, after doing RTW for a while, options are springing out. Good for me, for I'm the type of person who'd be bored with routines after a while. However, I reckon the L Route won't be there forever, as the alternative highway from Pasir Gudang to Bakar Batu will be opened some day. For now, I'll use it whenever I'm in L circumstances - lazy/late/lone mood.
Stats this morning:
Out from home
Arrive office
Ride time
Ave. speed
Max speed
Good doggies
tesco + L route,
 Hollowpoint, knobbies
Thanks for dropping by.
Explore new routes and modes, and get rid of getting bored.