Here's my report from this past weekend.....kinda long....
First I'll start off with a little background drama that was happening….
My Industry Nine Torch 'classic' rear hub gave me some missed heart beats this weekend.
A few rides ago I remember hearing a loud "pop/snap" while going up a pretty steep little grunt of a climb. I figured soon the hub was going to start spinning but it held together to the top. Then I backpedaled. Everything was fine. "Huh? Oh well, hammer down!" and I kept going.
This Saturday night I drove three hours to a camp spot where I was going to then get up at 6:30am Sunday morning and pedal in a few miles to a resort and do an Enduro race. I have a camper on the back of my truck. When I packed my bike I took off the wheels and stuffed it all inside. Unfortunetly I didn't think too much about how to lay the rear wheel and laid it in at a 45degree angle with the cassette body underneath, hanging in mid air.
Going down the 2 1/2 hours of freeway and 1/2 hour of fireroad made the cassette body slide off the wheel, landing face/pawl side down in the floor of the camper. So when I opened the door at 11:30 at night to set up camp I found a total heart stopping mess!
Luckily the cassette body still had the pawls and springs attached, but it was dirty not. I started picking out the debrie with my knife when I realized that the inside bearing of the cassette body was blown to bits and what I was picking out wasn't small rocks from the floor of the camper but rather smashed ball bearings! Aggghhhhhh
I'm thinking I'm totally hosed because I don't know if the resorts bike shop will be open before the race starts, let along them having a 27.5" wheel with 142x12 axle I could 'rent'....so I was thinking I might have to rent a bike, IF they were open.
No way. I was going to fix it! I figured I had been riding it with a destroyed bearing for some time so I might as well clean it up and get one more day use out of it.
All was going good. I tried to clean it without taking the pawls/springs off, but no luck. I just couldn't get it clear enough to spin once I put it back together.
Going on midnight now...
I pull the pawls while working at the back of by truck under some nice bright backup lights. But flying without a net as I didn't have anything underneath me. I was being real careful.....when while install pawl spring #5 it loaded up and instead of falling in it's little whole, shot off like a 1x3mm coil rocket into the fine silty tahoe dust.....buuuuuhhhhhhh bye!!
I contemplated throwing myself of a cliff for a few minutes, then figured, "well, I'm already missing a bearing. Why not run it with 5 out of the 6 pawls?"
So, that's what I did. I carefully installed the 6th spring and pawl. Gave it a spin and it felt fine. No binding. Threw it on the bike and torqued the thru axle down. Felt fine. Jumped on and did a few laps under the full moon at 15 past midnight called it good enough and went to bed.
Woke up. Rode in to Park from where we had camped up by Watson Lake. This made for a bit of a nice pedal down(and some up, dammit!) and into Northstar. But, having never actually done it before, I was a little bit sketched as I didn't fully know the route, nor did I have much faith in my rear hub not blowing up and leaving me stranded miles in the boondocks.
The Enduro Race was a blast. It didn't seem that hot temperature wise to me. But then again, I'm from the valley and it was going to be over 100 on Saturday so I was glad to get out of the heat. Plus, I'm used to riding N* with the big bike and wearing all the gear, so to be on the small bike and no gear while wearing a skid lid and goggles, I was pretty happy temperature wise.
On Saturday afternoon I hear that N* had a 15 minute major hail storm, then 20minutes of showers. The trails on Sunday morning at 7am when I dropped in to them were something I have NEVER experienced at N*. Loam!! Ahhhh, so nice!!
Organization was really good. Course was taped off and marked well. A few blind hauling balls in the tight brush to come on to a fireroad where you then made a hard 180degree turn kinda sucked with no warning except the course worker waving his flag. By the time you saw the flag, it was too late. Lock it up, pitch it sideways, drift, PEDAL!! Hopefully next time they'll put some corner arrows a little before the blind corners.
Started off with a riders meeting around 9am, and were given our start times. Mine were 11:04 and 12:04. So, at 9:30 we started in categorical waves to start pedaling up to mid-mountian, bottom of Vista Chair. 1.8 miles, 2000' vertical. This was un-timed. Because of my category I had an hour and a half to pedal up to mid mountain and get on the lift to the top. No problem. I definitely took it easy riding up. I have NO IDEA why it looked like people were working hard riding up that hill?? Even the Pro's had an hour to make the climb and do the lift. I did it all in 35minutes. And that was a fat kid going as slow as he could!
There was a 'start house' set up at the entrance to Big Trees with an electric eye that you tripped when you rolled on course.
The First Test Section was really fun for the first 2/3rds then it dumped into a xc trail that sort of rolled/climbed through these whoops that were made for going the other way. Ouch, that hurt. Leg and lung burn. It felt like we were making a big loop on this part and I started second guessing if I was on the right trail or not. Slowed down as I pondered these thoughts, (it would be soooo helpful to have at least an arrow or flag somewhere along these sorts of sections to let you know you're on the right track) then realized that heck, might as well get back to it because even if I was on the wrong trail, I was certainly NOT going to turn around. The rolly uphill section dumped into a fire road, then a quick sprint for 1/4 mile and there was the finish line right around the corner.
An easy climb up a fireroad to the top of Manure Pile...
The Second Test Stage was much more to my liking. Fun ripping sections twisty, some rock gardens, a few short uphills but nothing more than 15 seconds. Ended right at the Observation Deck at the lower Village. I'm not sure I could make up much more time on the second section, I guess maybe 20seconds, but overall I'm very happy with my second section. My first, I could easily take a minute and a half off, if I would have ridden it once before the race it would have made a big difference. Oh well....next time!
Anyway, I can't wait for the next one. They did say they are looking at expanding the Enduro Races at N* so I'm stoked on that.
Oh, how'd I do? Third in the 40+ open group. 2nd looser. I'll take it!
Now.....should I replace the bearing and get a pawl spring or just keep riding it?! hehhehehehe
Mtbr's 2016 Winter Biking GearReviews and Roundups
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Thread: Northstar Enduro