Marc’s Holiday Wish List

Last week, Tyler asked us all to come up with a holiday wish list to share- our picks for the year in a several categories.  I had a good hard think back over the year and have come up with my personal favorites.  Being a wish list, most of my choices are staggeringly expensive- but they do start at $13.  Most of all, though, I would like to spend a week (or three) riding in the Portes du Soleil with Endlessride.  The resort spans two countries and countless villages (including Champerey and Les Gets) and has some incredibly epic riding alongside the downhilling for which it’s most famous.  An easy 45 minute drive from Geneva, it’s a world away from my regular riding.  Thanks to Sian at Endlessride for the dual monitor desktop-suitable photo above.  Now, on to the hardware…

Tool:

Pedro’s

Y Torx Wrench

Though my most-used workshop tool is easily Park’s Allen Y-wrench, 2010 seems like the year that Torx fasteners started popping up everywhere.  Though they’ve long been common disc rotor hardware, they’re now starting to show up on cranksets and brake levers, even stems and seatposts.  Having the three most common sizes (T10, T25, and T30) close at hand in a tool that provides both good leverage and good access (no need to pull QR skewers out of wheels when installing rotors) has been invaluable.  It’s also the only Torx wrench that should be needed for a well-equipped race day or road trip.  It’s worth more than its $13 price in skinned knuckles and the lifetime warranty means that it (or a no charge replacement) will be around for the foreseeable future.
Clothing or Gear:

Castelli

AC seatpad

Available on a number of Castelli’s shorts and bibs, the company’s AC pad is far and away my favorite.  Though it feels a bit thin and dense at the shop, I haven’t found another pad that works better with my behind.  The fact that it’s antimicrobial and allegedly self-thermo regulating are icing on the cake.  As other shorts work their way toward the bottom of the drawer, my Free and Endurance shorts, get use on every big ride, on road or off.  The AC pad has been replaced by the Progetto X2 for 2011- let’s hope that it’s every bit as good…
Component:

DT Swiss

EXC150
suspension fork

Completely, utterly unjustifiable.  Until you ride one.  Price aside (something that’s something addressed by DT’s magnesium-legged EXM series), the DT EXC150 suspension fork is probably the perfect trail fork.  Well under 4lb (despite the easy to use RWS 15mm thru axle) with 6in of the most supple suspension travel I’ve felt, DT’s carbon trail fork is leagues better than anything else on the market.  Like it’s predecessors from Pace, DT’s dampers are very simple and do not interfere with the their forks’ action.  This means that small bumps all but disappear while larger impacts are handled in a controlled manner.  Mine is a bit long for the bike it’s mounted on and I’d happily trade the lock-down feature for a proper travel adjuster, but nothing else is as supple or lets me go quite as fast.  Don’t be surprised to see a 130mm version on test in the near future…
Mountain Bike:

Commencal

Meta 5.5 Carbon

I’ve only spent about six hours on Commencal’s light(er) weight trail bike, and it’s not as efficient as I’d want my daily ride to be, but no other bike has felt as playful as the plastic Andorran.  If cost and space weren’t issues (and if cost weren’t an issue, I’d make the space), the Meta 5.5 Carbon, with a lightweight trail build (XTR, DT EXC150, Easton Haven wheels) would live in my garage.  It wouldn’t be my most-ridden bike, but would be pulled out for playful rides with the guys and for trips to Moab, Salida, Sedona, or (if I’m truly fortunate) the Portes du Soleil.
Road or ‘Cross bike:

BMC

Racemachine RM01

As much as I love the look of thin-tubed steel and carbon road bikes, as much for their implied comfort as anything else, BMC’s aggressively functional aesthetic strikes an altogether different chord.  As Tyler noted at Interbike this year, the company is out to combat their reputation for abusively stiff frames with Tuned Compliance Concept zones.  The increased vertical compliance should make the revised Racemachine much better suited to my sort of all-day rides and our area’s appalling roads.  Of course, this is really all rationalization:  the real reason I lust after a Racemachine is the Gulf GT40-inspired paint job.  Hotness.

marc

Comments

Bruce - 12/20/10 - 11:39pm

Not sure what the AC pad is — even in 2010, the Free and Endurance shorts use the Progetto X2.

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