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  1. #1
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    First ride with the Airborne Skyhawk!

    Finally got mine this past Tuesday. Wasn't bad putting her together at all. Greased the pedals and seatpost, adjusted the end points on the F/R derailleurs (youtube is my friend) assembled the handlebars, snugged all the bolts, swapped the derailleur hanger with a new one (mine was bent during shipping) and I was almost ready to ride. This was my first time assembling a bike like this and it was actually more fun than difficult!


    My front and rear discs were rubbing slightly on the caliper which were easily fixed with loosening the caliper mounting bolts, squeezing the appropriate brake lever and slowly and evenly re-tightening the mounting bolts. My buddy who was helping me bent the disc a little straighter too and they came out pretty much silent with the tiniest rub that went away by the end of the day. So at this point the brakes were set, derailleurs tuned, computer installed, ODI grips installed, hydropack filled, helmet/sunglasses/gloves on, adjusted the seat/levers and it was finally time to ride!


    Here's a pic from her maiden voyage:


    I must say I beat the hell out of this thing my first ride. She took it very well. I took it on the most advanced trail at a local spot (Cunningham Park) with rocks, logs, jumps, drop-offs you name it I hit it with the Skyhawk. The only thing that happened was I cracked the plastic front sprocket guard by smashing it really hard going over a steep log pile.


    This trail required me to be constantly switching gears to be able to get up and down this trail, my SRAM components it came with performed flawlessly all day. I was riding with my buddy who owns a Trek Superfly and he was really impressed with my bike.

    So after 1.5 hours we rode about 9.3 miles of trail... my legs were burning! It was time to eat. On our way back I was bouncing on my fork trying to wheelie and manual or whatever and bounced my way into a chain link fence parallel with the sidewalk! I smashed my front wheel into a cement founded post and flipped over the bars and landed on my ass. (Had my helmet on!) Luckily I didn't get hurt and my buddy laughed pretty hard after he knew I was okay but I taco'd my brand new bike's front rim. =( We tried bending it back but it's shot, time for a new one. Anyone have any recommendations? I don't want to get too crazy expensive or anything... I'm planning to ride this bike until it breaks and then upgrade next season to a Guardian or Goblin...

    Here's the result of the chain link fence:
    Not the end of the world but it is pretty tender today.

    All in all it was a great day. It was my first time on a real mountain bike trail in general and the Skyhawk took care of me. The brakes slowed me down well, the fork although a little springy took a lot of abuse and overall it took pretty much everything I threw at it. I look forward to riding again this weekend hopefully Saturday afternoon and Sunday afternoon pending acquisition of a new front rim! Well after all the research, reviews and countless threads I read through... I'M HOOKED!
    Last edited by Weazsel; 04-18-2013 at 04:02 PM.

  2. #2
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  3. #3
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    Re: First ride with the Airborne Skyhawk!

    Sounds like a blast but I'm a little confused... So you taco 'd a wheel on the first ride and you are excited about it, I'm confused did I miss something?
    2011 Scott scale team 29er
    Easton Haven Carbon bars
    Odi lock on rogue grips

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by getagrip View Post
    Thanks man! Appreciate the links! If I can't find something local to get me back on the trail this weekend I'll go with the Shimano Deore set you showed me in the second link.
    Quote Originally Posted by RobboNJ View Post
    Sounds like a blast but I'm a little confused... So you taco 'd a wheel on the first ride and you are excited about it, I'm confused did I miss something?
    Well I'm not excited about bending the wheel but I am excited about mountain biking in general and my new bike! I used to ride bmx about 10 years ago when I was a teenager and this is the perfect combination of adventure, exercise, nostalgia and challenges I could ask for. I'm also excited that my $350 bike give or take, took a beating on the trail yesterday and still lived to tell a tale... kind of... haha The taco'd rim in my opinion isn't a reflection of quality. It's more of a reflection of stupidity on my part. I hit the fence with decent speed and all 185lbs of me...

  5. #5
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    Nice man, congrats on the new bike.
    Earnest Hemingway once said "The world is a fine place and worth fighting for." I agree with the second part.

  6. #6
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    Glad you are enjoying it. Post more pics when you get new wheels on it!

  7. #7
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    Update and some pics!

    So my LBS couldn't fix my busted wheel so I bought a new one. He only had a single wall so I bought that to get me riding for this weekend. Went on two rides... Yesterday my friend got his new bike and mulled around Bethpage State Park I'd say half on pavement and have on some sidetrails. Rode 14 miles total.

    Today I went to Rocky Point trails by myself and rode another 19 miles with the Hawk. That place was awesome. The trails were so well marked and had a nice variety of terrain. Once again I gave her a run for her money on all the black diamond and double black diamond trails. Fun climbs and downhills, a bunch of moguls and a jump here and there really kept me busy. I'm going to need to get a GoPro soon so I can post some video.

    Can't really tell in the pictures but I picked up a WTB ProGel saddle from my LBS. It's nice being able to sit down after a ride now!

    Here she is taking a rest about halfway through the ride:

    Another shot:


    Today was my personal best so far:

    Got some speed today!


    This is since last Tuesday on the Hawk:


    I love this hobby. =)
    Michael Garramone

  8. #8
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    Soon you will find that it isn't a hobby. It becomes a way of life! And a great one at that!

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