Out of the Box.

I just unpacked my bike case.
A month and a half after I got back to Anchorage, and I'm finally getting around to it. I really didn't have an immediate use for anything in the case, and it was in a nice, compact package that didn't take up much space. Considering the shape I found the garage in when I got back, that last one was a big deal.
Little by little I've been organizing the piles so I can move around again. I finally made just enough space so I could wrench a little, and finally found just enough time so I could put the titanium bike back together.
It went back together fairly quickly, and then I started tearing it apart. I swapped out the SRM with one freshly calibrated from the service center. I re-adjusted the derailleurs, correcting my ham-fisted efforts at alignment in Biloxi. I tinkered and played around and generally made it into a functional bike again, which is a rewarding endeavor when I can find the time.
I'll probably use it at the Dome this week, so I can start work on the various other projects I have facing me this winter. I have stems and handlebars, in all of their carbon magnificence, just waiting to be installed. I have cables and chains to replace. I have parts to clean. I have a backlog of maintenance that piled up during a summer of me taking the easy way out.
I'm not one bit sorry about that. I needed to ride more than I needed to wrench. The cool thing about having so many bikes is that you can go a long time before you actually need to work on something. When something's wrong with a bike, you just move onto the next one. The bad thing about having so many bikes is that eventually it catches up with you.
It's nice to have the ti bike back together. It goes together and cleans up easily, which is important when you ride in crappy weather. I still think it's a pretty sharp bike, with a streamlined, utilitarian nature that says, "I don't need all of that fancy carbon, weight-weenie stuff to beat you to the line." Whether or not my legs can back that up is another matter. 
It's far from perfect, as the geometry isn't quite as responsive as I'm used to. It's fine on long, straight rides, but when the turns get a little "sporty" it doesn't quite corner on rails. It certainly isn't a quiver-killer, but that wasn't its purpose. It fills its role better than I anticipated, so I'm more than happy with it.
Doesn't mean I won't look at other bikes, though.


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