Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Please be fair and thoughtful in your opinions. No rants please.
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Sweep
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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby Sweep » 24 Feb 2017, 6:55am

JonRaleigh wrote:[, I have emailed Ridgeback and made my thoughts known. I have not received a reply although I will share any feedback that I receive on this thread.

For those amongst you who would like to do similar:

http://www.ridgeback.co.uk/contact

Your observations re frame are welcome and make me realise I will have to look elsewhere.

Regards


Good luck with this and of course we would be interested in any reply. But i cannot help but remember that when the bike first came out I emailed Ridgeback asking where it could be seen as even in London it was more than elusive.

I never to the best of my knowledge received a reply.
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bretonbikes
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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby bretonbikes » 24 Feb 2017, 8:43am

reohn2 wrote:Whats so bad about disc brakes?
Don't say the fork isn't as comfy as a touring bike fork capable of carrying front panniers coz it ain't.

Good disc brakes(BB7's) stop very well indeed wet/mud or dry,with great modulation,don't wear out rims and keep on working even when the wheel is badly out of true so long as it'll go round without the frame stopping it :) .
Bent rotors are the main claim of worriment,if you're that concerned carry a spare they're cheap(£10?) and weigh very little or,unless in Outer Mongolia,are available from almost any bike shop.Pads also last far longer than V or canti pads.
Did I mention they don't wear out rims?


Last time I looked in my local bike shop he had a board with about 20 pad types. That's one issue, and you don't need to be in outer Mongolia.

Rubbing rotors is another of course. I've had a lot of problems with this and it's not easily cured (I've never managed it).

One reason for curved - taper gauge forks on a touring bike is that the curve acts as a spring. It's exactly that area which is stiffened by the disk mount. I well remember the difference in ride between my old steel forks and my first pair of 531 forks. Is this significant on a touring bike with front panniers? Possibly - it depends whether the manufacturer specs fork blades/curves appropriately. I'm not a fan of low-riders with drilled forks to be honest.

But yes you point out all the advantages, and they are perfectly valid, however I would say that they need to be qualified. Wet weather braking - no contest. Yes they will run with an out-of-true wheel, but then any expedition cyclist will have a spoke-key and know how to use it and a wheel that can't be trued in 5 minutes with a key is probably shot anyway. Rim-wear - yes, but this is more theoretical advantage than a practical one as by the time the rim has worn through to the markers you are due a new rim anyway - you'll be getting into spoke-breakages, eyelet failure and so on. Most rims wear because people don't clear their pads.

My point is that discs have clear advantages - it's great that we have them as an alternative, but also have disadvantages for the rider who wants a bullet-proof, easily fixed, long-distance tourer. The trouble is that as so often we are not given the choice - in the same way that we are forced from 7-speed (almost no dish) to 8 to 9 to 10 and soon 11 speeds by the manufacturers - it is they that dictate what we ride.

And as a bit of thread drift, the way the industry has largely supplied bikes that their marketing department can sell to an ill-informed public, rather than what their engineers and testers think is best has blighted cycle design for 100 years and put many people off cycling altogether. I'm old enough to have had my first 'proper' bike as a steel framed 'racer' weighing 40 lbs that had gearing suited to Hinault not a 13 year-old child. Go to any CTC meet (or cyclepark) and have a good look at the stem position on the bikes there. At a guess 80% will be at their maximum height - I am never, NEVER asked to lower the handlebars on a hire bike - often asked if they can go higher. Now in the car industry, if Ford for example discovered that all their drivers had their seats at the maximum distance from the steering wheel and who complained that it didn't go back far enough do you think their response would be "oh but proper drivers should have their seats right forward"? But bikes with low handlebars look cool, and look like racing bikes, and most people buy with their eyes and by numbers... And don't get me started with */x##** Aheadsets...

Anyone spot that hobby-horse scud by?

hamish
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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby hamish » 24 Feb 2017, 12:32pm

Good quasi-rant Breton Bikes!

I agree with nearly all that. I don't mind disk brakes for my use, and for my Pugsley they are the only real option, but I want to have the choice. As for more sprockets than 7..... I was happy with 5 and probably would still be.

My only disagreement is with aheadsets. I like them because I don't have to fiddle with headset spanner a anymore and never have a loose headset.

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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby bretonbikes » 24 Feb 2017, 12:43pm

hamish wrote:Good quasi-rant Breton Bikes!

I agree with nearly all that. I don't mind disk brakes for my use, and for my Pugsley they are the only real option, but I want to have the choice. As for more sprockets than 7..... I was happy with 5 and probably would still be.

My only disagreement is with aheadsets. I like them because I don't have to fiddle with headset spanner a anymore and never have a loose headset.


Aheadsets are great if you only ever need to set the height once (having tried 10 quills to get the right one;-) and then leave it. You can imagine the situation in a hire centre - "can I have my handlebars raised please"? - "Sorry no - this is a £1000 bike so you can't adjust it like the £50 one you have at home in your shed..."

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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby reohn2 » 24 Feb 2017, 2:12pm

bretonbikes wrote:
Last time I looked in my local bike shop he had a board with about 20 pad types. That's one issue, and you don't need to be in outer Mongolia.

Simply find the pads you require on the net(I prefer sintered because they last a loonnngggg time in mucky weather),buy 4 sets for approx £20 or less.carry two spare pair on a loonnngggg tour and still have a pair left when you get back :) .Not much heavier than V brake pads and don't wear anywhere near as quick.

Rubbing rotors is another of course. I've had a lot of problems with this and it's not easily cured (I've never managed it).

With a little patience they're easily trued up with an adjustable spanner(heavy to carry)or the correct tool for the job(lighter)by bending the rotor spokes a little.If a rotor gets bent beyond repair six bolts and the new one you've slid down the back of the pannier sorts it,plus you can pick up another spare at any MTB shop and they don't weigh much.
I agree if you like brake levers not to have much free play rotors do need to be spot on,and if the bike is to be thrown on top of far eastern buses by 'baggage handlers' there could be trouble,but for normal use they don't go out of true suddenly unless knocked,we have 203mm rotors on our Cannondale tandem and whilst I can't say I've never needed to true them up it is a rarity,probably no more than three time in 8 years.


One reason for curved - taper gauge forks on a touring bike is that the curve acts as a spring. It's exactly that area which is stiffened by the disk mount. I well remember the difference in ride between my old steel forks and my first pair of 531 forks. Is this significant on a touring bike with front panniers? Possibly - it depends whether the manufacturer specs fork blades/curves appropriately. I'm not a fan of low-riders with drilled forks to be honest.

Most lightweight steel tourers or Audax bikes do have lightweight springy forks but most touring bikes have lowrider mounts and as a result have a pretty stiff fork,the default tourers such as Galaxies and LHT's are stiff as a crutch,with not much give/spring.
So nothing lost IMHO,big supple tyres take care of the ride IME.

But yes you point out all the advantages, and they are perfectly valid, however I would say that they need to be qualified. Wet weather braking - no contest.

Check :wink:
Yes they will run with an out-of-true wheel, but then any expedition cyclist will have a spoke-key and know how to use it and a wheel that can't be trued in 5 minutes with a key is probably shot anyway.

Some people go rigid with fear at the thought of a spoke key in their hands,but I take your point a practical cyclist will be able to true up a wheel.But if you've ever had a flat spot on a rim that negates the rim brake you haven't lived :? though TBH that's a long shot.OTOH we've had a rim unzip in the middle of Holland once,made worse by the fact it was a 26inch 48 hole,no chance zipties are wonderful things at holding the tyre in place :) :evil:
Rim-wear - yes, but this is more theoretical advantage than a practical one as by the time the rim has worn through to the markers you are due a new rim anyway - you'll be getting into spoke-breakages, eyelet failure and so on.

In the right conditions rims can wear at an alarming rate,6k isn't unheard of.
Most rims wear because people don't clean their pads.

And most people don't clean their pads and rims or choose rim friendly pads.
Koolstops are a good buy IMo but don't improve wet weather braking much IME,BBB TriStops are great for all conditions but wear out fast in bad conditions.

My point is that discs have clear advantages - it's great that we have them as an alternative,

Agreed :)
but also have disadvantages for the rider who wants a bullet-proof, easily fixed, long-distance tourer.

Not as bad or as many as some people would have us believe :wink: .
The trouble is that as so often we are not given the choice - in the same way that we are forced from 7-speed (almost no dish) to 8 to 9 to 10 and soon 11 speeds by the manufacturers - it is they that dictate what we ride.

That's true in part,but discs were developed for MTB's because they're used in bad conditions,really bad conditions and used to wear out rims and pads at very alarming rates.Tourers are expected to perform in bad conditions though mostly not that bad,yer pays yer money as they say :wink:
And as a bit of thread drift, the way the industry has largely supplied bikes that their marketing department can sell to an ill-informed public, rather than what their engineers and testers think is best has blighted cycle design for 100 years and put many people off cycling altogether. I'm old enough to have had my first 'proper' bike as a steel framed 'racer' weighing 40 lbs that had gearing suited to Hinault not a 13 year-old child. Go to any CTC meet (or cyclepark) and have a good look at the stem position on the bikes there. At a guess 80% will be at their maximum height - I am never, NEVER asked to lower the handlebars on a hire bike - often asked if they can go higher. Now in the car industry, if Ford for example discovered that all their drivers had their seats at the maximum distance from the steering wheel and who complained that it didn't go back far enough do you think their response would be "oh but proper drivers should have their seats right forward"? But bikes with low handlebars look cool, and look like racing bikes, and most people buy with their eyes and by numbers...

I couldn't agree more,blame the pro racing influence :? :evil:

And don't get me started with */x##** Aheadsets...

Anyone spot that hobby-horse scud by?

It ain't the Ahead system,it's the length of the head tube and steerer tube which mostly are way too short for most people,but there are various stem angle/lengths available and steerer extenders if you really must :? :wink: .
BTW most quill stems are a bu@@er to change,especially with drops.
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bretonbikes
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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby bretonbikes » 25 Feb 2017, 12:20pm

For what it's worth I will be buying two of the 2017 expeditions to try out this season - then if they're good probably more. I will report back.

[inappropriate word removed] colour change though...

reohn2
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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby reohn2 » 25 Feb 2017, 2:21pm

bretonbikes wrote:For what it's worth I will be buying two of the 2017 expeditions to try out this season - then if they're good probably more. I will report back.

I'll be interested to know how you get on with discs and multi use.

<i>[inappropriate word removed]</i> colour change though...

I think you're right,it isn't appealing is it? :?

What surprises me about that bike is the hubs,everything else seems pretty much workmanlike(other than the overly steep s/tube angle and lowish stack)but £20 on the retail cost would have bought XT M756 six bolt hubs.
I'm not sure if the BB is Octolink or S/T,if it's the former there's room for improvement in a square taper sort of way :)
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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby bretonbikes » 25 Feb 2017, 4:49pm

reohn2 wrote:
bretonbikes wrote:For what it's worth I will be buying two of the 2017 expeditions to try out this season - then if they're good probably more. I will report back.

I'll be interested to know how you get on with discs and multi use.

<i>[inappropriate word removed]</i> colour change though...

I think you're right,it isn't appealing is it? :?

What surprises me about that bike is the hubs,everything else seems pretty much workmanlike(other than the overly steep s/tube angle and lowish stack)but £20 on the retail cost would have bought XT M756 six bolt hubs.
I'm not sure if the BB is Octolink or S/T,if it's the former there's room for improvement in a square taper sort of way :)


Hubs are the hidden part of the bike and almost always the bit that gets penny-pinched. After all some £400 hybrids hide a freewheel hub for heavens sake! That said the cheapo Shimano hubs do a job but it's the one thing I'd change. Sadly for the sake of £10 you end up changing the entire wheel... With just that change I'd say all the kit was just fine.

BB is octolink...

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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby Bonefishblues » 25 Feb 2017, 5:35pm

I thought that in one (or more!) of our recent threads the consensus was that the Deore was actually a pretty decent hub and in many ways preferable to the aluminium axle of the XT?

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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby bretonbikes » 25 Feb 2017, 6:00pm

Bonefishblues wrote:I thought that in one (or more!) of our recent threads the consensus was that the Deore was actually a pretty decent hub and in many ways preferable to the aluminium axle of the XT?


The hubs used aren't Deore (which I quite like) but basic Shimano M475

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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby Bonefishblues » 25 Feb 2017, 6:20pm

That would be as good an explanation as I could have hoped for! :lol:

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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby reohn2 » 26 Feb 2017, 12:08am

Bonefishblues wrote:That would be as good an explanation as I could have hoped for! :lol:


And the XT M756 are CroMo axle hubs like Deore and LX,it's the M77X series that have alu axles and small ball bearings,and by all accounts are crap by comparison.
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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby Sweep » 26 Feb 2017, 8:07am

reohn2 wrote:
Bonsefishblues wrote:That would be as good an explanation as I could have hoped for! :lol:


And the XT M756 are CroMo axle hubs like Deore and LX,it's the M77X series that have alu axles and small ball bearings,and by all accounts are crap by comparison.

Thanks for this post reohn, for it is a minefield.

But a question.

Are the XT M756 Hubs(which as they have chromo axles i assume also have the bigger bearings) still generally available in rim brake version?

Can they easily be acquired ready built into wheels?
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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby reohn2 » 26 Feb 2017, 9:43am

Sweep wrote:
reohn2 wrote:
Bonsefishblues wrote:That would be as good an explanation as I could have hoped for! :lol:


And the XT M756 are CroMo axle hubs like Deore and LX,it's the M77X series that have alu axles and small ball bearings,and by all accounts are crap by comparison.

Thanks for this post reohn, for it is a minefield.

But a question.

Are the XT M756 Hubs(which as they have chromo axles i assume also have the bigger bearings) still generally available in rim brake version?

Can they easily be acquired ready built into wheels?

They do have the large bearing similar to Deore and LX,though Shimano claim higher quality cones and races.They're no longer available AFAIK in a rim brake version,I'd go with LX for those.
Shimano M475 are lower end six bolt disc hubs which IME feel a bit rough even when new,though that won't be felt when riding,but they aren't as well sealed from the weather as the higher end stuff and do wear out quicker as a result.
If I bought a R/back Expedition and intended it as my one and only bike for heavy touring and day to day use,I'd have and extra pair of hand built wheels with LX hubs and Sputniks for rim brakes or a lighter rim such as Mavic 719's or Exal LX 17's.
I could then use the stock wheels for day to day use and save the best wheels for the heavy touring.
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Re: Review of Ridgeback Expedition 26" Bad News Update

Postby Sweep » 26 Feb 2017, 10:14am

Thanks for the clarification reohn.

So it's back to my idea before that it is effectively LX hubs from here on in for me.

I bought a Hewitt a couple of years ago and changed the spec from XT to LX after I learned of the issue - was a bit disappointed that Mr Hewitt didn't bring the issue up himself in view of what I said I needed the bike for,

Agree with your take on the standard wheels - and your approach means that they are not wasted. Alternatively you could just sell them to part finance some Spa sputniks.
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