Varaxis

Varaxis

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on March 21, 2014

1 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I get my drink all over my jersey/shirt, thanks to the crappy seal on the top around the nozzle. It lets it all out around the base and outside of the nozzle, rather than only from the center, in a stream, as I'd expect. When I first noticed, I ended wrapping my lips around the top as if it were a teat, to get a drink. Very uncool... after that, I just unscrewed the cap to drink.

Interesting design, but I still have to clean it about the same as any other bottle. It's a little faster, since I can use my hand from the bottom too, but there's no avoiding some work to get the slimy film off the inside of the bottle after filling it with energy drinks.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on March 6, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I love the 2-way release trigger (thumb push or pull with index finger), the multi-release rear shifter (can shift to two higher gears on the same push/pull, and also to four lower gears on the same push), and the swiss watch-like sound and feel of the clicks, and the high end SP41 cable set it comes with, but the paddles still feel a little flimsy for my tastes.

I'm a thumb-push kind of guy and I feel at home on SRAM shifters. The SRAM paddles feel much more solid and don't have as much free movement before it feels resistance. I also like the match maker 2 system, though I haven't tried the I-spec system to compare. If the SRAM shifter also had multi-release and had a 2/3x adjustment for the front shifter, I feel it would beat XT. Not a XTR contender really, as it lacks that refined mechanical feel (the swiss watch feel), but the XX is super light at about 90g per shifter w/o cable.

Shimano just needs to work on those paddles and the "free play" before it engages to get this to feel perfect. I feel that its Swiss watch like feel actually is what makes it feel like it's worth the price over XT and SRAM offerings, not to mention the premium cable and housing included and longer warranty period.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on November 4, 2012

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

Used this for commuting and also just used it for a grocery store visit, and to my amazement, it fits two 1-gallon plastic milk jugs side by side in the main compartment, with room for more small items and a loaf of bread on top!

The best feature about this pack is how it seems to be balanced enough to stand up straight easily when loading/unloading. The zippers zip open and closed really crisply--no snagging, no needing to straighten out the bag to zip up easily, just quality stuff! Things slip in and out very easily! The front compartment fits my U-Lock, mini pump, and patch kit easily and I've used the organizer sleeve for my cyclometer and lights. It'd easily fit a Garmin Edge too. Always useful to have a pen and marker with ya. Sunglass pocket is a great idea, to store your sunglasses when indoors and now that it gets dark sooner. Haven't used the bottle holders, as I don't want to make it too heavy, but handy if I need to take a drink along with me. Skateboard straps seem to be of limited use, not being a skateboarder. I will think of something for it though (seems to be what's balancing the shoulder straps to help it stand up straight). Love the Phantom style, esp with the yellow contrast.

Seems to be good design and construction. I had a SOC Bugout back as my last pack and its shoulder straps' stitching came undone, but its huge capacity encouraged me to "over-pack" it. The front pockets on that pack also had stitching come undone and items could fall out. I made sure to check the design on this, to not let that happen again. Thankfully, the Dakine's pack doesn't seem to have anything that will affect its function immediately if the stitching starts to fail.

This pack is highly recommended! I considered the Dakine Frontier, thinking I'd need more room, yet didn't want a pack that looked like a mountaineering/camping pack, but this one happened to fit the bill, for a reasonable price and confidence inspiring warranty.

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Varaxis

Varaxis posted an image about on July 30, 2012

Small, 28.9 lbs out of the box

Last small Huck n Roll had in stock, shipped late July '12. FIT RLC and Adaptive Logic RP23, though there are rumors that the latest shipments have '13 Fox CTD. Maxxis 2.4 Ardent EXO and 2.2 Ikon EXO tires instead of Schwalbe. ODI Ruffian with Yeti lock-on caps instead of Yeti logo grips. 12x142 rear thru axle. 711mm width handlebar, not 685. 70mm 6 +/- rise Thomson X4 stem (with 3mm bolt heads, wtf), not 90mm. Cassette only has biggest 3 cogs (in alloy instead of steel) on alloy spider, which I thought should've had another group of 3 cogs also on a spider if truly a XT cassette. Thomson Elite 30.9x367 seatpost. WTB Rocket V Yeti Logo saddle with NiCro rails. Other tech specs should be correct.

Waiting on Chris King thru axles and adjusting clamps before riding it. Tempted to ride it as is, as the DT wheels are really smooth and high quality and I could just keep the CK wheels on my lighter XC bike. Also might switch to a 160 rotor up front, as 180 with the adapter is suffering from brake rub out of the box, esp if these XT brakes are as powerful as everyone says. Gonna weigh again after CK wheels, Reverb seatpost, and Enve DH riser bar goes on.

For how long it took to ship (about 1 week from order to getting a tracking #), the build job wasn't all that great. On top of the front brake rub, I'll have to tune the FD some too, or just get rid of it (go 1x10), as I'm getting chain rub on the inside of the cage when using the 6 largest cogs in the middle ring. I also had a little difficulty removing the wheel plug off the cassette side of the rear wheel. Was jammed in there so tight that I pulled the whole cassette and freehub body off the DT hubs, exposing the spring and star ratchets. Had to slide it back on and hold it on while I used the thru axle to tap the plug out. I'd say something about the stem, saddle, and tire/fork/shock air pressure, but basically everyone needs to adjust those anyways. At least the hoses and cable housing aren't extremely long.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on December 25, 2011

A little overhyped & expensive, but still high quality & beautiful, and has great support from the mfg
3 5

They came a bit tight, resisting spinning, which I thought would detract from pedaling performance. To see if they would loosen up with a ride, I tried them out in front of the house, and without too much effort, I managed to get the pedal body to come off the pedal spindle, due to the threads of the nut that holds the pedal body on the axle being stripped off.

I sent them in to Twenty6, where they replaced the stripped nut, rebuilt it, and got it spinning smoother, and got them back about 10 days after they left my hands. I just weighed them out curiosity and found that they came in at 314g, which is what HnR lists, but some other sites list this as weighing 265g. My scale is properly calibrated and zero'd with the tray. This seems to be the latest version, which has a beefed up pedal body, which I hear was necessary due to the tapped holes for the pins not holding up to pedal strikes.

For the price, I expected the best, but compared to the competition, their price seems too high for what you get. It's no longer super light, but more around the weight of a Point1 Podium, which was my other option. The need to replace pins frequently seems to make them even more expensive; I've already lost 3 pins after only 2 rides. Despite all that, it's one of the only quality options if you want it in a certain color. I kind of took the looks part for granted, but the more I look at them, the more I appreciate them. The beauty of them is what you are really buy into. Kind of seems a shame that I'm putting them on my primary trail ripper, in place of some stout Sunline V-1s, which sees a lot of pedal bashing due to the 12.5" BB height and how trails seem to be built to take you through the chunky rocks on purpose (which I happen to like).

(1)

 

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on December 19, 2011

5 5

I used to dread getting goathead thorns in my tires and needing to patch either 5+ holes, since I'd get 5+ goatheads embedded in my tire at a time, or replacing my tube. Thorn resistant tubes didn't work and even DH tubes didn't work. I was ready to convert to tubeless with Stan's, until I found this.

I pumped some of this with the Caffelatex injector into my tubes, which don't have removable valve cores. That's all it took. I've discovered some nice side effects too, such as tire pressures remaining constant despite not riding for days. I also am no longer afraid of going through certain parts of the trail, feeling more inclined to adventure through neglected overgrown trails. When riding to the trail, I ride in the dirt instead of trying to share the pavement with the cars that only give you an extra few inches of extra space when passing.

Now when I see goatheads embedded in my tires, I just smile.

It's not whether this is any better than Stan's or Slime, it's how good it is for certain needs and it seems to handle my needs perfectly. I also mix this stuff with Stan's for my tubeless tires, to help initial sidewall sealing, as I hate spending 10 minutes on the Stan's shake and lay flat on side procedure to create a seal. I rather just put sealant in, pump it up, and ride. I'd go full Caffelatex, but I still had some Stan's and I know Stan's works great at sealing relatively large punctures, while I'm not quite so certain how this stuff will work on any relatively big punctures and don't really want to find out in an inopportune time.

(1)

 

Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on December 19, 2011

2 5

I got the small size to go along with my Osprey pack, thinking it would encourage me to take my camera along and take more pics, since it'll be mounted to the front of my pack. Figured it would be a safer spot than in my short pockets and far more convenient than having to pull it out from the back of my pack.

I found that with the camera in it, the camera fits loose and makes it floppy. The exterior dimensions are bigger than expected, and for the same price, I could get a LowePro bag that does a better job (since they come in so many sizes to custom fit your camera) and looks better.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on December 19, 2011

3 5

Seems to be made for those looking for a big step up in functionality from swim trunks over lycra shorts, but not the toughness from other AM/DH shorts.

Single snap with velcro with adjustable velcro waist tabs keep the shorts on adequately, better than simple single snaps which pop open the moment you lean forward or tuck too far.

The liner is decent, comparable to Jett's liner, but not as good as Swobo's. Better than Nema's, but is also removable.

The shell's inseam and leg circumference is not to my liking. It might be a size thing, as I have size sm (28" waist), but am 5' 7" and ~145 (+/- 5) lbs and it fits kind of tight. The legs fit close around my hams/quads and that little bit of skin between the bottom of my shorts and my knee pads is something I only like seeing on girls wearing knee socks and short skirts.

The fabric's probably the same stuff they use to make baggy swim trunks out of. Not a fan of that fabric.

Probably worth it at the current sale price with the liner considered. Not a bad look if you don't wear knee or shin protection. If I didn't already own a set of shorts from most other manufacturers, i would've rated this rather high. I'll stick to Jett, even though they cost a lot more and don't ever become this cheap on sale.

Edit: now that I see others reviews about how this short runs small, I kind of understand why this short feels so small on me. Hmm, I think these will be stuck on the bottom of my stack of riding shorts, so I think I should return 'em.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on December 13, 2011

4 5

I got this since it was cheap and looked well designed and I trusted the Feedback brand. It worked well to true a few wheels. The biggest complaint I had was needing to flip the wheel around to check for dish and the little bit of extra time it took to lock the wheel into the stand. It does the job, but just lacks the convenience of the higher end stands like the Park TS 2.2. I feel there's no truing stands between this and the TS 2.2 worth getting though. Go cheap and functional or all out, IMO. This stand already paid for itself in the amount of time and money it would've cost to have a bike shop to tune up my wheels and I gained skills doing it, actually itching to build a new wheel. Though I kind of want the TS 2.2 for the actual wheel build I'm aiming to get.

This is nice if you have a few wheels to true, or want to check out after replacing a few spokes, that you're not really too attached to and just like to thrash and are on a budget. If you have a larger budget and are serious about your wheel's condition, looking to get more frequent use out of it or trying to true or build up some higher end wheels, then get the Park TS 2.2.

If you have axles bigger than 10mm, look for truing stand adapters from brands like Problem Solvers.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote an answer about on December 13, 2011

I had the pedal platform come off the...

I had the pedal platform come off the spindle on my first test ride on them in front of my house, trying to "break-in" the pedal spinning resistance, since they were a bit tight, especially the right side.

I e-mailed them and got this response from customer service:

I’m sorry to hear you had issues with your pedals. We had a few that got sent out the door in the big shipment to Backcountry that were a little on the stiff side. Since everyone’s level of pedaly-ness in their local terrain varies from place to place,some people prefer the stiffness and some don’t, so we tend to get varying reactions to the “factory settings”. If you ever have this issue again, the best way to speed up the “breaking in” of your pedals is to take them apart and sand the inner blue turcite-plastic bushing with a little strip of sandpaper. That will increase the dimension that applies pressure to the assembly and loosen the spin a bit.

Obviously, that bit of advice is a bit late – if you’re looking at stripped threads and the like, your best bet is to mail them to us and we will rebuild them, tune them up and get them spinning evenly and more freely for you.

Please, if anything, don’t second-guess your purchase. Our pedals cost as much as they do not because of brand markup or because we all drive fancy cars here – they cost what they do because they’re made entirely in-house, we’re passionate about every detail and we proudly stand behind the products we make. If you find a way to blow them up, we will put them back together for you so you can keep riding! We still service pedals we manufactured years ago, of long-discontinued designs.

Twenty6 Products
805 Mantle Drive #B
Belgrade, MT 59714

You paid a lot of money for those pedals, and we want to make sure you get what you paid for. We’ll be glad to take care of this for you!"

Coincidentally, it's the same issue another reviewer, bob4680062, here faced: http://www.hucknroll.com/mountainbike/review/Ummmthey39;re-light/200112859.html

I'm not going to give them 2 stars for this though. Going to wait until I can put them through the same punishment I put my much heavier Sunline V-1s through.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on November 8, 2011

5 5

I never thought I'd need 745mm bars and anything smaller than a DH/FR/park bike, but after trying it on a big bike, I went wide on all my bikes. Definitely improves your handling!

I love Sunline. They seem to be perpetually on sale, but I don't know why. I can't find anything wrong about them. They're proven in races, so I'm not worried about their rep. They even come in colors! The sale price is just another plus.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on November 8, 2011

5 5

These grip like no other platform pedal I've tried and they feel very solid. Doesn't feel like they're about to break or are bending under my weight and they shrug off the hits like it doesn't give a shit. I'd be more worried about the impact of pedal strikes going to the cranks, BB, or frame than their effect on the pedals. They're heavy. I'd upgrade them for something lighter, since I installed them on a lightweight carbon XC/trail bike, but I have a feeling I'd be going back to the Sunlines and then 10 years from now, I'll be telling the new school rides how they don't make pedals as bombproof as the Sunline V-1s anymore.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on November 6, 2011

5 5

Haven't found any knee pads that fit better and more comfortably than these yet. I guess I should stock up on them when they are on sale. I go through them pretty fast, since I wear them full time on every trail, even when pedaling up long climbs to the top of the mtn.

There's just something missing about them. I keep wanting to try other pads. The last set of pads I tried were the Race Face Flank, which are already tearing after 6 months and occassionally have issues with slipping down. They also leave the calf exposed to pedals (accidentally hit them when walking the bike or turning it around on a narrow trail).

These are 5 stars until I find something that truly beats it. Combine these with a decent shin pad, especially if you ride flat pedals. The 661 veggie shin pads are an awesome combo with it.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on November 6, 2011

1 5

Tried this elbow guard in medium and find it slides down my arm too easily, due to trail chatter. It seemed loose, so I tried to size down to small, but same deal. It's still kind of loose and still slides down. Tried to wear it over some arm warmers and also over a long sleeve jersey, but same issue. Even when slid down, it still offers decent protection coverage, though the sliding nature makes it seem like it won't stay in place in a crash. It's not uncomfortable, unless you count the urge to want to slide it back up.

Have the same issue with with my Race Face Rally FRs in medium, though the small Race Face Rally FRs fit me great. Gonna go back to using those. I simply wanted one I could use with a wrist brace which my Rally FRs don't allow, since the forearm guard protects right up to the wrist.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on October 11, 2011

4 5

I've hit my shoulder a few times on trees and walls of dirt and landed on my chest a few times, so I wanted to get some protection. The Evo suit was way too hot for XC rides in SoCal summers, but I took think on a ride up Santiago Oaks and it felt alright. It was hot/tight enough to make me feel pain on the climbs and affect my performance (you can feel your chest being constricted), but the bamboo microfiber they use feels amazingly cool when you let the air hit it.

Only thing I don't really like about it is, it's not really long enough in the torso in size small. It only comes to about my hip bones and if it just had a little bit more length, I could maybe use that length to take the damn thing off. It's hard enough that I actually felt like practicing taking it off by myself.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on October 11, 2011

Only protects side of leg, leaves hip and tailbone vulnerable
2 5

I recommend the POC Hip short instead if you're looking for quality protection beyond abrasion protection on the side of your leg. This leaves your hip wide open and doesn't do much for the tailbone area and it's relatively rough, heavy, and bulky.

In the pic, it helps prevent only injuries like the one on the left, but not the one on the right. POC Hip Shorts will protect against both and offers real protection for the tailbone area. Those tiny squares of very soft foam in these shorts, 2 seen above the side of leg pad and a few on the back, offer virtually no protection.

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Varaxis

Varaxis wrote a review of on August 19, 2011

3 5

These don't slip/twist on my carbon bars, don't really notice the ergo effect all that much, and have allow a good grip on the handlebar. This is along the lines of an ODI Ruffian, in terms of padding (this is a bit thicker). My hands got callouses trying to get used to em, considering I'm a type that tends to pull back on the bars on steep climbs. I imagine the Leicthbau version is even worse.

I personally prefer a more padded grip, since I was on Oury grips for 5 years before I went to these new fangled lock on grips and then ergo grips. I might just go for Oury lock-ons or maybe go for the GE1s instead (for an ergo grip without the big wing platform).

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