Can a Motobecane Ti Fly 29er XO 2X10 Keep 3 Pounds of Fresh-Picked Chanterelles Safe?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Can a Motobecane Ti Fly 29er XO 2X10 Keep 3 Pounds of Fresh-Picked Chanterelles Safe?

    I think its fair to say that I obsessed a bit about this purchase. However, I combed through everything I could find on mtbr, and never found an answer to this question. So here is my modest contribution to the debate.

    I’m 5’9 170 lbs, and have a 32” inseam. So I bought the 17.5 inch frame with XO 2X10 on pre-order. When the bike came, I knew I be replacing the wheels, crankset, and bars. For wheels I went with Stan’s ZTR 355s laced to American Classic hubs, tubeless setup with Raven 2.2 tires. The cranks are XX 39/27. The bars are Ragley Carnegies- no rise with 25º sweep.

    I’m coming off a custom steel hardtail built by Nick Kostrikin in the early nineties. Been riding that bike since 96. So this is my first 29er, and my first ti frame.

    My first ride was a mix of loose coastal singletrack. It happens to be a great mushroom hunting area too, so I picked 3lbs of fresh chanterelles, tucked them in my camelbak and then rode for about 5 hours. Could the “magical” titanium ride keep the mushrooms from ending up a bruised mushy pulp?

    The Bike:
    So far, I absolutely love this bike. Simply put, it takes me to the edge of what I can do in terms of skills, confidence, and endurance. What more do you want? Oh yeah, its drop dead gorgeous, too.

    The Ride:
    Good lord this bike loves to climb. The first time I really noticed this was riding up some stairs at a local park. Descending, it’s stable, and give me too much confidence for my current skill set! I can see why so many folks crash hard in the first few weeks of converting to a 29er. Especially with these wheels, I picked up speed quick, and got crazy confidence. The Elixirs were more than adequate to scrub the speed off.

    Frameset:
    The frame is just stunning and it is plenty stiff for my weight. You can tell that building a stiff frame was a priority for Mike-I think the last thing he wanted was for the bike to be considered cheap and flexy. In some key areas (chainstays, BB, etc) it is quite a bit stiffer than the steel frame it’s replacing. In other words, if you’re looking for cushness you might want a ti seatpost. And if you want to take off decals, Citristrip is indeed the way to go. Don’t mess with anything else, the decals will rub off with a cloth after 15 minutes.

    Fitting:
    So, buying a bike sight unseen, I worried a bit about frame size and fitting. I am used to 19” frames. Did I make a huge mistake picking the 17.5 frame? Many folks on this forum said that they prefer 29ers one size smaller, so that finally tipped the choice towards the 17.5.

    I’m glad I chose the 17.5, but in truth, I could have gone either way. I appreciate the standover, and I think with the 19 I would have been a bit more perched up on the bike. I fit a medium-sized frame well, but need a slightly higher seat tube to get the proper leg extension (my femurs are longer than average). So the seatpost is maxed out where it is, and it fits great.

    As for the stem and steerer. Moto leaves a healthy chunk of the steerer tube uncut. Knowing the 100 mm fork already had me pretty high, I took out the spacers and lowered the stem…the bike handled much better. Less skittish on the front end. More of that “in the bike” feel. If this fit sticks, I’ll cut the steerer tube in a few days. I have not tried flipping the stem, but my gut tells me that would be too low.


    2X10 XO Drive Train
    Why weren’t things like this all along? The last time I felt this was with v-brakes. 2X10 just works, and it changes the way you use gears. Do I need 20 gears? Not really, but that’s not the point. The point is that this setup works. I have the 26X39 rings up front, and the 11-36 cassette. I thought I’d be bit low geared, I mean that 36 tooth monster is huge. But it turns out I’ve used it a ton. On the top end, I don’t think I’ll need anything higher, even when touring. We have a few more hills out here in the Bay Area, but Id say this setup is good for about everywhere I’ve ridden except maybe Florida. Yay SRAM!

    Avid Matchmaker broke on the first ride however. Boo SRAM.

    Wheels/Tires
    Yeah, I love this setup. ZTR 355s/American Classic hubs/Raven 2.2s tubeless. I’m running the 2.2 Ravens at about 22 psi front/24 rear. With these tires you gotta run them low. But damn, people are right they hook up like you wouldn’t believe. That said, it takes some finesse to ride them… you can’t get too sloppy. The AC hubs build stronger wheels, and have a pretty quiet freehub, which was really important to me. Wheels make all the difference.

    As you can see from the pics, no clearance issues.

    Carnegies Bar
    The bars are taking the most getting used to. I definitely feel like I’m IN a cockpit with these bars. But they are awesome to yank on in climbs, they add stability on descents, and wrist pain is not an issue after a few long rides. They feel a little funny when I’m trying to make small steering adjustments, but my brain may just need to rewire a bit so that steering input matches output. If it still feels funny after a dozen or so rides, I try try a salsa moto ace.


    Shipping, Moto assembly, etc
    Shipping went really smoothly, Took about 5 days. UPS punched one hole in the box, god bless em. But everything was packed up really nice inside, and the parts were quite well protected.

    Everything was pretty nicely tuned. They could have done a better job cutting shifter cable housing to the right size. Not a big deal, but there is no reason to leave extra shifter cable housing where it routes on the frame. I trimmed everything down, but I don’t think many new owners will, so why not do it right the first time? (Of course after I swapped out the bars I do need more housing up in the front end.) Likewise, I’ll need to trim the front brake cable so that it tucks nicely in.

    So that’s it. We all knew that the XO Ti Fly 29ers are a screaming deal, but I just wanted to add my voice to say what a fine bike it is. Oh and the chanterelles turned out just fine.

    Thanks for reading, Im off to ride! (And yep i know the front brake cable is hanging down).
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Can a Motobecane Ti Fly 29er XO 2X10 Keep 3 Pounds of Fresh-Picked Chanterelles Safe?-img_3621.jpg  

    Can a Motobecane Ti Fly 29er XO 2X10 Keep 3 Pounds of Fresh-Picked Chanterelles Safe?-img_3623.jpg  

    Can a Motobecane Ti Fly 29er XO 2X10 Keep 3 Pounds of Fresh-Picked Chanterelles Safe?-img_3688.jpg  

    Can a Motobecane Ti Fly 29er XO 2X10 Keep 3 Pounds of Fresh-Picked Chanterelles Safe?-img_3690.jpg  

    Can a Motobecane Ti Fly 29er XO 2X10 Keep 3 Pounds of Fresh-Picked Chanterelles Safe?-img_3694.jpg  


  2. #2
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    Awesome review and nice photos.
    -_0
    _ `\<,_
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    Like life…the trail is unpredictable...

  3. #3
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    [QUOTE=jrat2010]
    Frameset:
    The frame is just stunning and it is plenty stiff for my weight. You can tell that building a stiff frame was a priority for Mike-I think the last thing he wanted was for the bike to be considered cheap and flexy. In some key areas (chainstays, BB, etc) it is quite a bit stiffer than the steel frame it’s replacing. In other words, if you’re looking for cushness you might want a ti seatpost. And if you want to take off decals, Citristrip is indeed the way to go. Don’t mess with anything else, the decals will rub off with a cloth after 15 minutes./QUOTE]


    Thanks for sharing. Can you tell me more about Citristrip?

  4. #4
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    Am I the only one who can not tolerate the 100mm fork and slack HA for tight single track? I converted to 80 for better handling but miss 100.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by scuver
    Can you tell me more about Citristrip?

    Citristrip is a safe formula for paint and varnish removal that you can get from your local Home Depot, Lowes or hardware store. Apply it and let it sit for 15 minutes or more then wipe off clean. No mess, no glue residue and it's quick. I did have to use a blow dryer for the head badge on mine to peel it off.

  6. #6
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    yep and if you get the spray version of citristrip,(Its a few bucks cheaper) just spray it on a rag, and then rub it on the bike. As a bonus, your bike will smell like oranges.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by cornice6
    Citristrip is a safe formula for paint and varnish removal that you can get from your local Home Depot, Lowes or hardware store. Apply it and let it sit for 15 minutes or more then wipe off clean. No mess, no glue residue and it's quick. I did have to use a blow dryer for the head badge on mine to peel it off.
    Thanks for the tip. I did it this morning and you are right, it was easy. I'm keeping the head badge, I think it looks awsome.

  8. #8
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    I believe stripping of the Motobecane decals invalidates the warranty...seriously.
    If somebody knows otherwise, please post.

    PS: I find the graphics tasteful so I don't feel an overwhelming urge to remove the graphics from my 29er Ti Fly.

    Nice review btw...and I believe you are on the right size bike. Standover would be tight on the 19" with your height...even with your long legs. I ride the 19" and have a 35" cycling inseam...from PB to ground...and about right but not gobs of room...due to the straight and not curved top tube..even though sloping.

  9. #9
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    Thanks for your note. I think on paper it definitely invalidates the warranty. But I'd be really shocked if they didn't work with you if you had a genuine claim based on workmanship... They've got nothing to gain from being jerks, especially on their high-end frames.

    Thanks for comments re: sizing, glad to know that I'm on the right frame. It was really strange to go down a size, but it was definitely the right choice. cheers

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrat2010
    Thanks for your note. I think on paper it definitely invalidates the warranty. But I'd be really shocked if they didn't work with you if you had a genuine claim based on workmanship... They've got nothing to gain from being jerks, especially on their high-end frames.

    Thanks for comments re: sizing, glad to know that I'm on the right frame. It was really strange to go down a size, but it was definitely the right choice. cheers
    Perhaps you are right about honoring the warranty sans decals. Good news there?
    I haven't heard of a single cracked Ti Fly 29er frame...not one. Contrast that with all the broken Gary Fisher Aluminum frames that the Fly was cloned from.
    I probably should have built with 2 X 10 or 2 X 9 at least. I built mine with Sram X.9 and triple...love Sram shifting...man its good. How do you like that crankset?...and what do you think about the Ravens?...I am running Nanoraptors on mine and have been fairly happy with them. The Ravens look like they would be very low rolling resistance and a very plush high volume tire...but how is the durability and traction in the dirt?
    Thanks...I do like how clean the frame looks without decals.
    PS: I went through a long experimentation with alternative bars. I won't ride them again. I developed ulnar nerve damage with them as the bar will tend to run closer to the heel of the hand aka base of the wrist. This in my cased caused impingement in the Guyon's canal right at the base of wrist. So word up if you are experiencing ANY wrist pain...do not fool with it. I believe ergonomically bars with high sweep are all wrong for off road and why racers all stick with 0-12 deg backsweep. I tried the Carnegie, Fubar and Jones H bar and many others like it. A suggestion is...find a 10 deg backsweep bar with the rise of your choice and get some Ergon Grips. I ride with bar ends as well. On this bike, I never have wrist or hand pain and my hands and wrist were "damaged" with the best round grips with bar sweep over 20 degrees.
    Last edited by dirtrider7; 10-03-2010 at 11:56 AM.

  11. #11
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    Thanks for the note. I love the SRAM 2X10, being able to shift big rings while climbing is a godsend, and the ratios are just right for me. The Ravens are real fast, especially when run tubeless. The front may be switched out eventually, but for now im enjoying the ride, and the challenge of trying to keep the front where I want it. Traction is fine as long as i move my weight around. Cant speak really on durability, but I probably have 120 miles on em so far and they look good. Keeping the pressure low should help preserve them.

    As for the alt bars, thanks for the heads up. I actually went to alt bars to get rid of wrist pain that i was experiencing on my 26, which had raceface risers. So far so good on the Carnegies, pain and soreness is gone. I tried the Ergon EA-1s recently, but have hopped back on the Ourys as the Ergons became slippery when sweaty. Cheers...

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