Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

DIscuss anything relating to non-standard cycles and their equipment.
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fossala
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Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby fossala » 14 May 2018, 3:27pm

I've recently bought an ICE QNT and it's a revelation. I'm commuting on it everyday (20 odd miles) and am going out for longer rides (up to 80miles so far but that is because of time restraint, not ability).

I honestly don't think I want to go back to upright bikes, they honestly just don't make much sense now. I don't drive so use trains for transport to get to different starting points, this is problematic with trikes. Any thoughts on Challenge mistral SL's? It should be with me on Friday.

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fossala
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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby fossala » 14 May 2018, 3:38pm

Posts are better with pictures
Image

UpWrong
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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby UpWrong » 18 May 2018, 4:02pm

Looks good. The large matt frame tube is very purposeful, almost military. Let us know how you get on with it.

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pjclinch
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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby pjclinch » 18 May 2018, 4:50pm

fossala wrote:Any thoughts on Challenge mistral SL's? It should be with me on Friday.


The one I rode many moons ago was a rather less Whizzy looking standard one rather than a verging-on-invisible SL, but I must say I was distinctly underwhelmed. Nothing actually wrong with it, but on the other hand devoid of stand-out "this bike is great because..." grin producing elements (though the HS11s it had did convince me Magura rim brakes were a worthwhile upgrade for my Streetmachine).

But, there again, my wife thinks much the same about my Streetmachine, so take it as it comes and don't worry about what I found on a variant.

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fossala
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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby fossala » 18 May 2018, 5:08pm

I'm still unsure I want it but I'm sure I'll find out after a few weeks. I'm more than happy with my ICE trike but it can't go on trains.

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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby UpWrong » 20 May 2018, 7:56am

The things is, if you want a lightweight 'bent with suspension there are no options currently available. Challenge achieve it with butted aluminium tubing and carbon parts, neither of which are used by HP Velotechnic and Azub. Why? Maybe reliability (and risk of litigation if frame failure occurred) and also luggage carrying capacity a priority to cater for the tourers. There is also the question of power loss with frame flex. A heavier frame might actually be a better climber if it flexes less.

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fossala
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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby fossala » 20 May 2018, 8:10am

UpWrong wrote:The things is, if you want a lightweight 'bent with suspension there are no options currently available. Challenge achieve it with butted aluminium tubing and carbon parts, neither of which are used by HP Velotechnic and Azub. Why? Maybe reliability (and risk of litigation if frame failure occurred) and also luggage carrying capacity a priority to cater for the tourers. There is also the question of power loss with frame flex. A heavier frame might actually be a better climber if it flexes less.

Are challenge not around anymore or do they just not make the sl models?

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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby UpWrong » 20 May 2018, 8:19am

fossala wrote:Are challenge not around anymore or do they just not make the sl models?


Good question. Theoretically yes. In practice I get the impression they are only making bikes in small batches and selling to dutch and germans who visit Nijmegen. The business got bought by one of the dealers who doesn't seem interested in supplying former Challenge dealerships. Others might want to relate their experience of trying to buy bikes and parts direct.

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fossala
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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby fossala » 20 May 2018, 8:23am

UpWrong wrote:
fossala wrote:Are challenge not around anymore or do they just not make the sl models?


Good question. Theoretically yes. In practice I get the impression they are only making bikes in small batches and selling to dutch and germans who visit Nijmegen. The business got bought by one of the dealers who doesn't seem interested in supplying former Challenge dealerships. Others might want to relate their experience of trying to buy bikes and parts direct.

I went on their website a week or so back but their catalogue and price list hasn't been updated since 2011. Do to collection/shipment issues I won't be getting the bent until Tuesday now. I'll report back then on how I find it.

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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby mark aldridge » 23 May 2018, 3:50pm

Challenge is still in business and machines and parts can still be sourced from continental shops. I have got bits within days.
Bikefix in London can manage it as well but a degree of patience is needed. This is not down to them but the reluctance of Challenge to service the UK market.

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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby nigelnightmare » 24 May 2018, 4:29am

fossala wrote:I'm still unsure I want it but I'm sure I'll find out after a few weeks. I'm more than happy with my ICE trike but it can't go on trains.


Why not?

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fossala
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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby fossala » 24 May 2018, 2:10pm

nigelnightmare wrote:
fossala wrote:I'm still unsure I want it but I'm sure I'll find out after a few weeks. I'm more than happy with my ICE trike but it can't go on trains.


Why not?

Mine is a 26" non-folding Trice qnt. They get grumpy enough with normal bikes (gwr).

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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby nigelnightmare » 24 May 2018, 11:12pm

fossala wrote:
nigelnightmare wrote:
fossala wrote:I'm still unsure I want it but I'm sure I'll find out after a few weeks. I'm more than happy with my ICE trike but it can't go on trains.


Why not?

Mine is a 26" non-folding Trice qnt. They get grumpy enough with normal bikes (gwr).


So.....Let em get grumpy. They're only jealous of your cool machine and the fact that they can't afford one.
I have a QNT 2007 model and have not had any "major" problems with trains, like you say they get grumpy. I just pointed out that weather it's got two wheels or three it's classed as a pedal cycle and pedal cycles are carried at the discretion of the company not the guards OR ticket inspectors and it's not my problem if your "cycle" facilities are inadequate/ poorly designed. After all it's not like they're something "NEW", recumbents have been around for over 100 years now.

Basically pre-book your ticket "with a pedal cycle" you don't have to tell them how many wheels its got, they usually don't ask. :wink:

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fossala
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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby fossala » 25 May 2018, 4:26am

nigelnightmare wrote:
fossala wrote:
nigelnightmare wrote:
Why not?

Mine is a 26" non-folding Trice qnt. They get grumpy enough with normal bikes (gwr).


So.....Let em get grumpy. They're only jealous of your cool machine and the fact that they can't afford one.
I have a QNT 2007 model and have not had any "major" problems with trains, like you say they get grumpy. I just pointed out that weather it's got two wheels or three it's classed as a pedal cycle and pedal cycles are carried at the discretion of the company not the guards OR ticket inspectors and it's not my problem if your "cycle" facilities are inadequate/ poorly designed. After all it's not like they're something "NEW", recumbents have been around for over 100 years now.

Basically pre-book your ticket "with a pedal cycle" you don't have to tell them how many wheels its got, they usually don't ask. :wink:

I had a tricycle (upright) and ended up stuck in Plymouth for a few hours until they would let me get on a train back home. To be fair you do make bicycle reservations. I think gwr also excludes tricycles in their terms, I check later.

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Re: Thoughts on Challenge mistral sl

Postby [XAP]Bob » 25 May 2018, 8:41am

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A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
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