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jimalex

Member since Jan 2008 • Last active Sep 2021

Most recent activity

  • in Current Projects
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    Was back in America this weekend for a quick work trip, and squeezed in one of my favourite rides, up Sullivan Canyon in the Santa Monica mountains.

    It was so great to be back on this bike, and having been riding steel bikes in the UK, it was awesome to appreciate the difference in ride and feel of this frame. Such a fun bike and pretty perfect for Californian fire roads.

  • in Current Projects
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    Thanks all for the kind words. I’m loving the Strael. And all the more so having the Crust to compare to. The Crust was great for party pace adventuring, but the Strael much better suited to munching miles, comfy but quick and responsive road riding, and confident and stable on bumpier bridle paths and farm tracks.

    Got some bigger tires coming which should give a bit more cushion on off road stuff, and considering a Restrap frame bag for bits and pieces on longer rides.

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  • in Current Projects
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    The pic above from the eBay ad. Not the best but I was super pleased when I picked the bike up. It was immaculate and had been very well looked after. The previous owner had bought the frameset and built the bike up, in a very similar spec to what fairlight would supply.

    Strael 1.0 54R frame - Reynolds 853 tubing with inhouse carbon fork and internal cabling
    Ultegra hydro groupset
    Hope hubs on DT Swiss rims

    The blue Hope finishing kit is a good color match to the frame decals but a too matchy-matchy for me so I swapped out the quick releases and cable ends to black ones. Also installed Thomson stem and seatpost, and Zoncolan saddle from my road bike (currently retired after finding a crack in the chainstay). Destickered the rims, lost the mudguards and changed the bottle cages.

    Also changed the tires from 28mm Conti 4 Seasons to 32mm Teravail Ramparts. They look great but are skinnier than I hoped - pretty much the same volume as the Contis that should be 4mm thinner. Definitely got room to go bigger in the frame in the future.

  • in Current Projects
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    Wouldn’t you know it - a nicely sorted Strael v1.0, in my size and with the same spec as I was about to order, but at a third of the price and 45 mins away.

    I made an offer to the eBay seller and collected the bike the next day.

  • in Current Projects
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    The Crust has left me with a bike shaped hole to fill.

    While I had some great fun with it, I missed the responsiveness and pick up of my road bike. The 853 steel gave a great ride and I’ll be sticking with disk brakes. So the search was on for a steel, disk road bike that could take ~35mm rubber.

    Of course lead times at the moment are crazy, so I’d resigned myself to a long wait before anything would be available. I looked at the Endurance and Grails from Canyon, and was close to a frame deposit with Ricky Feather when I found the Fairlight Strael.

    I expect many forumengers will have seen the glowing reviews this bike has got for its ride quality, attention to detail and versatility since being released several years back. The Strael is now on version 3.0, and an Ultegra specced build in my size is due in stock in July 2022.

    Won over by the ethos of the company and their focus on do-anything bikes that prioritise function over form, as well as the seemingly unanimous praise of the bike from reviewers, I was about to pay the £750 deposit and begin my 10 month wait, when I thought to check the classifieds...

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