New Outside Column And More Test Bike Hijinx!

by Bicycle NewsJuly 3, 20190 comments
Happy Birthday to Canada’s addled downstairs neighbor!

Basically, Canada’s just trying to live its life, while we’re down here banging on the ceiling with a broomstick.

So why am I popping in during this auspicious holiday?  Well, firstly I figured I’d let you know my new Outside column is up:

Basically it’s time to move past the “here’s a new bike lane” phase and into the “here’s a bold new policy that’s going to dramatically reduce the number of cars and trucks on the streets” phase.

Secondly, remember how yesterday I took a ride on the Jones LWB?

Well, today I took the exact same ride, only on the Jones SWB:

And when I say exact I really mean it.  Not only did I leave at the same time as yesterday, but I also wore the same jorts!

So what did these two rides reveal?  Well, the SWB is indeed a more nimble and playful bike, whereas the LWB is smoother and more stable.  Going up steep climbs, taking tight turns, and riding smooth, undulating sections of trail is a bit more fun on the SWB, whereas riding over logs and rough patches is a bit easier on the LWB.  At the same time, it’s not like one does a certain thing that much better than the other, so while it all comes down to preference it’s also not like you can really go wrong.

Or, if you prefer overblown bike review metaphors, look at it this way:

The LWB is like galloping through the woods on a horse, while the SWB is like ripping through the woods on a wild boar.  On one you’re sitting higher up and stepping over everything with grace, while on the other you’re closer to the ground and being led by your snout–and I mean that in the best possible way, except that you will occasionally thwack your pendulous boar testis on a root or rock, since as we established yesterday the SWB is more prone to pedal strike.

All of the above is a bit unfair however, because as I mentioned the differences between them are ultimately not that stark, and the two bikes overlap way more than they don’t.

So which would I choose?  After all, Jones isn’t going to let me hang onto two bikes forever.  Well, yesterday I thought it would be the LWB, but after today I’m less certain, though I am very slightly still leaning that way since I do like the more generous proportions of the LWB and I also value my testis.

But it ain’t over ’til the wild boar squeals.

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