Earlier this summer, I set on a course to slim down the Campeur and have a more speedy version of itself. What began as a good idea to be always conscious of my speed fizzled out to a goal of having fun. I was never going to be “fast” with the equipment I am locked into.
Now having Resist Nomad tires is a testament to the style of riding I’d like to be doing as much as possible. Rambling around the community without worries of punctures due to road debris or gravel is a good feeling. My first couple of test runs with them on pavement rocked! 42mm of goodness kept the ride bone-jarring free around these Birmingham “roads”. The weight is a little more with the wire-bead tires but the resistance is less than I thought. Photos of the clearances and tires are in my previous post.
To test these tires out to the max, I took a trip over to Red Mountain Park. I immediately encountered large sharp gravel, sand, dirt and unsteady ground. Frankly, I was just waiting for a flat but it never happened. The wide body of the tires kept the bike upright even among dirt and sand conditions. The park itself didn’t off much of dirt only gravel so I abandoned the trail and went down the powerline strip to get more dirt action. Although, the tires could handle gravel, there was some minor slippage on hardpan dirt when taking sharp turns or steep ascents.
In the park itself though, I had sort of a freak accident. A large twig was caught between the spokes and eventually ended up being wedged in the fork. The result was a bent spoke near the rim that I ended up not worrying too much about although I am replacing it now at the LBS. I thought that it was a bad luck sign to my eventual dirt riding days but I also believe this would’ve happened anywhere.
In all, the first dirt riding experience was positive and a good change. However, I’m sure 650b wheels would offer an even better experience when it comes to off-roading. The VO Diagonale wheels pack a punch though, enough to handle the rough stuff so I’ll keep on riding on these surfaces.
As always, I have more plans for changing gear on the bike! I soon will replace the white Velox handlebar tape that has lasted beautifully to a leather or least, a brown tape to match the saddle. This is to work to the goal of drifting away from a classic constructeur bicycle. I’m playing around with the idea of dirt drops. Possibly the Soma Portola but still looking at where my hands would be compared to what I have now. On Instagram, the colorful gent, ultraromance has some he sports. Sweet idea maybe?