Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Pump Track Development

It’s been a week since I started developing a pump track. With all the help that I got from ROP’s members, the progress has been good so far. However, we were still unable to ride and pump it fast as though most of the bumps are still way to high for us to ever find a good pump rhythm. There’s still a long way to go with much works need to be done in the first place. Here are some photos from our last few work sessions. Enjoy!



Download the original photos here : http://www.flickr.com/photos/republicofpuchong
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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Trail Riding in Batu Dam(n!)

“Kayuh cari Santa Clause!” is what Bro Enol has been saying over the past few days. And here we are today, at Batu Dam (slippery as usual) during Christmas holiday. For some of us, this is going to be their first taste of Batu Dam, the trail that was very famous for... you know, good climbs, slippery descent, leeches, Maggi soup and best of all, crossing cold water (too cold for me though) - a perfect place for trail riding!



We started a bit late that day. Got to wait for everyone else to arrive at the meeting point before continuing drove to the gate and started unloading our mountain bike. It was nearly 10am when we started climbing to the trailhead.



The ride was fun as usual with almost everybody got some minor scratch upon their body (due to deadfall in some areas, tree branches etc) plus some bleeding caused by non other than the leeches! During the break we managed to cook 4 packs of Maggi and two pots of Aik Cheong Coffee specially made by our coffee master, Bro Enol.



I had a moment where my neck was scratched by a dead tree branch hidden behind the tree leaf and I can hear it snapped into two… arghhh!!! I was leading the pack and had to stop for a while to regain my composure. Again, I was lucky that the branch broke into two and only left a 3” scar on my right neck without bleeding badly.

The last descent was the most enjoyable. There is a moment when I’m descending into a blind corner; I was shocked by a small kid (anak orang asli) walking down the other side. He, surprised as I am, just ran back instead of moving aside while his brother watches and smiling. Sorry kid didn’t mean to scare you (terkejut beruk gua!).

The ride ends at 3pm. The longest that I ever had but it was fun nonetheless. I headed straight home while others went to mamak for ais kacang, bike shop and anywhere else.

More photos : http://www.flickr.com/photos/33735646@N03/
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Sunday, December 28, 2008

ROP's Pump Track or 4X?

Just a quick look at soon to be ROP's official pump track. I found this sweet little spot while recceing new trails last wednesday. Together with few friends from ROP, we began to work on some berms and was able to do some testing run.



My warmest thanks go to those involved especially ROPeans and Ezam for bringing all the tools, kereta sorong and a test bike plus, a fullface helmet (that was the first time I wore a fullface during a ride, its killing me!). We managed to work on the basic flow of the track, under very hot condition. More coming soon!


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Thursday, December 18, 2008

Snippet – Tires & Derailleur

As I mentioned in my previous post here, my tire has experienced a bad puncture last 2 weeks. Here’s the shot of the actual damage done by a piece of bamboo! I was lucky enough to have survived that ride.



So far the tire had survived 2 rides; another one was done in FRIM last Sunday.

Kenda Komodo 2.1

I don’t plan to change it but, if I can do it for free, why not! And here it is now, a used pair of 2.1 KOMODO from Kenda. Once again it was sponsored by a good friend of mine; Miharo (thanks a lot Bro!).



Deore Rear Derailleur

I always had problem with shimano’s RD, in this case a Deore which tend to bang the frame every time the trail gets ugly! There’s no solution for that but, the only one that I can do is to make it as silence as possible. So, a piece of used tube will do the job. In this case, nothing can beat SRAM!


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Monday, December 15, 2008

Bush Receives Cycling Jersey, GPS in Israel

I feel like quitting mountain biking everytime I saw a photo of BUSH! How about you?



Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert presented US President George W. Bush with an Israeli cycling Jersey and a GPS system for mountain biking as the two exchanged gifts on the first day of the US leader's visit in Jerusalem January 9, 2008.

President Bush, a keen mountain biker, also received some riding goodies from his wife Laura for Christmas. Original story here!
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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Taman Mas - Banting Revisited

The route was the same like our last trip here, from Taman Mas headed to Kg Lombong, then straight to Tg Rabok (Batu 12 Dalam, Banting, Kuala Langat) before turning back for a total of 24km in distance. There were 13 of us that day.



We were about 8km into the journey when something really funny happened. And guess why are they smiling in this photo, below? Are they trying to being cute and sweet? Not really. Actually, they were celebrating the puncture of my Heng Shin (macam hancing pun ada) rear tire! Hahaha… you heard me right, really, they were looking for something (“bahan”) to laugh about.



We were continuing our journey (after a short break) when it’s happened. My rear suddenly popped and went flat. Quick inspection shows there was a piece of bamboo (about 5” in length) pinning through my rear tire from top to sidewall! What the heck? Instead of simply changing my inner tube, I had to patch my “tire” at the same time (have you guys ever done that? Tampal tayar?). I’m a bit worried because there was a hole on top side of my tire and we were only few kilometers into the journey. Another 16km ride will complete everything.


The damage! Photo courtesy of Haitsan


Tampal tayar? Photo courtesy of Haitsan

Now look at what they did as a tribute to my Heng Shin. They carried their bikes for the reason of “takut pancit”? Hampeh la... This section has now been declared as “Kawasan Panas”. Anyway, for me this was one of the funniest moments in my mountain biking history.



As soon as everything was settled, we headed forward towards Tg Rabok (Kampung Orang Asli) before proceeding to a short bumpy descent section where one can pump their bike and do some drops along the way. This section was pretty fun with lots of small drop and bump, and don’t forget ruts! And it’s quite slippery at some part.


Photo courtesy of Haitsan


Photo courtesy of Haitsan

All in all, we were quite happy that day. The ride was fun and weather was good, gloomy along the way. It was a good trip to remember.

More stories and photos here:
http://haitsanspmholder.blogspot.com/2008/12/jejak-lembu-korban-tg-rabok.html
http://republicofpuchong.blogspot.com/2008/12/jejak-lembu-korban.html

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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Downhill Mountain Biking Basics

I dedicated this post to all mountain bikers. I am not the best person to teach someone how to ride, so I guess whatever I put here may help a lot of us. Note to beginners : You don't need a big downhill rig to do all these, trust me. A basic hardtail will do just fine if you do it correctly. So, don't upgrade your bike just yet. Learn the right riding techniques will help you a lot (and save you money) and can make your riding more relax and enjoyable. Not everybody can afford a big bike though - but learning is free :). Enjoy!

Mountain Biking for Tips, Techniques & Etiquette

Finding the Right Mountain Bike
How to Accelerate on a Mountain Bike
How to Shift & Turn a Mountain Bike
How to Mountain Bike Down Hill

Mountain Bike Settings

Adjusting Front Suspension Damper Settings on Downhill Mountain Bikes
Adjusting Front Suspension Spring Rate on Downhill Mountain Bikes
How to Adjust Downhill Mountain Bikes for Racing
Different Handlebar Positions for Downhill Mountain Biking
How to Position Seat Height & Angle for Downhill Mountain Biking
Adjusting Rear Suspension Spring Rate on Downhill Mountain Bikes
Downhill Mountain Biking Brakes

Downhill Mountain Biking Basics

How to Distribute Weight on a Downhill Mountain Bike
How to Reduce the Cornering Radius on a Mountain Bike
Specific Handlebar Positions for Downhill Mountain Biking
Tips for Brake Use in Mountain Biking Cornering
Basic Tips on Steep Terrain Downhill Mountain Biking
Body Position Tips for Downhill Mountain Biking
How to Compress Your Mountain Bike
How to Ride Through Rocks in Downhill Mountain Biking
Tips for Drifting in Mountain Biking Cornering
Foot Position for Cornering on Terrain when Mountain Biking
Tips for Camber Corners in Mountain Biking

Note: Some of the techniques listed above i.e drifting, is not recommended doing it on XC trails. By doing so can damage the trail. Only do that on the specific downhill trails.
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Saturday, December 6, 2008

ATC3K Headcam Product Test by MBR

The test was done by MBR (Mountain Bike Rider UK) crew. Basically, the ATC3k is a standalone headcam, which means everything we need to start filming (apart from a memory card) is included in this unit.


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Thursday, December 4, 2008

ATC3K Action Camera by Oregon Scientific

I long for this kind of headcam for quite sometime now and, I had already put this ATC3K Action Camera into my wish list - hope to have enough money soon enough, so that I'll be able to get one. It is the cheapest model that I could find so far (is there any cheaper than this?).


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Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Kona Fire Mountain at Taman Cabaran

It’s a KONA! Yes, another Kona, and this time - a hardtail. What’s with Kona? I heard people saying. Well, I love its slacker head angle handling characteristic. Its slow steering 68.1° head angle (for 16” Fire Mountain frame with 100mm fork) gave me better feel compared to other XC hardtails which mostly have around 70°-71° head angle for quicker steering.



The Kona Fire Mountain Deluxe has been in the Kona line-up for 20 years now. It seen a lot of change and has even gone through a bit of change itself over those years. This affordable trail bike has more World Cup DNA implanted into its tubes than most bikes 3 times its price. For sub RM2000, it’s a good buy considering that this bike came stock with Deore’s 9 speed set, FSA crank, Hayes MX4 mechanical disc brake with avid lever and RockShox Dart 2 fork.



Riding throughout Taman Cabaran’s DH ‘fun’ section with this hardtail really gave me a different feel. I felt a bit ‘melayang’ here and there plus the small 1.95 Heng Shin rear tires slightly sliding (without braking) all over the place (the trail was slightly wet anyway). Anyway, I am very happy and satisfied with its overall handling and, I’m going to ride this bike stock without any upgrade except for maybe… the saddle, maybe not… just ride it!


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Monday, December 1, 2008

Putrajaya Critical Mass

This (Friday 28.11.08) was my 3rd Putrajaya Critical Mass ride. Somehow I decided to just wear my ‘Pasar Malam’ attire and yes, I rode my new hardtail for the first time that night and suddenly, everything felt so light!



Believe it or not... rider 'selipar' in action! Photo courtesy of projectrudy.net



I met a lot of friends that night - riders, bloggers and soon to be ROP members :). Here’s a short sub 4 minutes video I made over the weekend. Enjoy!



Link to this video : http://www.pinkbike.com/video/50093/
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