Monday, 22 September 2014

First real ride out on Bike Swanky's PYGA 29'er

Kind of lost here without my dog Mr Hink's. Our house feels real empty and quiet. My dad, Ern is lost too, so I asked him "how you fancy heading out and helping me shoot a video and maybe get a few pics". It seemed like a good opportunity to take the demo bike I have on loan from Bike Swanky for a proper blast. Paul and Andy of Bike Swanky very kindly sent the bike up on Friday morning along with 2 jerseys a mtb and a road one and some Bike Swanky flyers and stickers.
Smile your on some kind of camera
Out the saddle and away up the trail

You see I had been invited to do a bit of an article in a mag and thought this was the ideal opportunity to try and give all those people and companies who have supported me this far a well deserved shout out. Bike Swanky have been fantastic in sourcing me the very coloured De Rosa Idol in a size 57cm I wanted, and not only that whilst I waited for my bike to come into stock they very kindly loaned me their De Rosa demo bike so that I could take part in the recent triathlon I have just done alongside Arctic ONE (another very special group of people who have my thanks and full support) The PYGA that was sent up is a fairly new bike on the market, it's partly designed by Pat Morewood in South Africa. Pat Morewood made some terrific bikes under the Morewood brand and I have to say on first impressions I really like the ride of this new PYGA. It's called a One Ten 29'er. They also do the bike in a 650b/27.5 inch set up with a little more travel. I recently glanced at the MBR UK top ten 29'er shoot out and the PYGA came top, so good enough for me.

 Anyhoo the story goes I was originally looking for a De Rosa Idol road bike and came across Bike Swanky .I got talking to Paul at first and then Andy and after we had finished chatting and Paul had learned my story he asked would I like to enter into a sponsorship deal/program and work along side Bike Swanky promoting their extensive range of bikes and letting people know all about how they are trying to make good quality kit accessible to ordinary folk. You can read all about the different ways of obtaining a bike or bike gear on Bike Swanky's web page. There are some fantastic deals and the lads over at Bike Swanky will sort you out if your spoilt for choice or just need a spot of advice.

So now I'm just waiting for the rest of the parts to come in to stock to go along with my very own Large PYGA frame and the boys at Bike Swanky will get my sponsor bike up to me.

PYGA One Ten 29
 What's the bike like? Well when I came in from work on Friday at around 12noon (got an early finish as I was owed an hour) I was amazed at how big it looked. I don't know if it's because it has those rather large 29 inch rims or if it's because it has very wide bars, somewhere in the region of 780/790mm, but the bike just looks huge. I immediately went indoors and got changed swapping out my prosthesis for my BTK and taking the PYGA for a quick spin up and down our back lane. It rode very nice. Really I didn't get much of a play on the bike on Friday, so that's why I took it out today, to try and get more of a feel for it.

The Mule....Errr I mean Ern
 The first thing I can say and if your able bodied you probably won't have noticed this anyway, is that this bike is incredibly easy to ride out of the saddle. I have been using the BTK since late 2009, what's that around 5 or so years and each bike I have rode I have had to practice as it takes a bit of getting used to. Different frame heights/angles, bar positions, well you get the picture. Well with the PYGA once I had set the handlebars, attached my pedals I was off and getting out the saddle and riding is a breeze. On some of my bikes my BTK is so close to the bars, not on the PYGA, there is loads of room.

Ern gurning I think...I hope
 The bike itself is so stable, the rear shock is a Rock Shox Monarch RT3 the same as in my BTK, it's a fantastic shock. The PYGA rides so plush in fact at times you think you were riding a hard-tail, yet when needed it deals with everything you throw at it. The front fork on the demo model was a X-Fusion Trace. It's a fork I  hadn't heard of previously, however again handled everything I asked of it. The X-Fusion having a pretty neat feature in that you can fix it at 110 for climbing or 130 for normal riding. It's all at the flick of an easy to reach switch on the top of the fork leg. Switch gear, brakes and the rest of the group set is Shimano XT. This was new to me I've never used a bike with Shimano shifters,they are an opposite pull compared to my SRAM's, so took a bit of getting used to. Once I had become accustomed to them they worked flawlessly, even when covered in mud. The PYGA like I say is stable, however also very nimble, you don't feel like your sitting right up on top of the bike and you can flick it and point it in any direction at will. The bike feels fast and I think the only limits would be the rider. At the end of my trail riding adventures I decided to ride from Beamish up to my Aunty Claire and Uncle Dave's. This meant riding up the rather large hill from the bottom of the Forges, right up to the top of Beamish and the Shepard and Shepherdess pub. The PYGA is fitted with a 2x10 set up and climbed up the hill very well. In fact I have to say I was even able to ride a good portion of the hill out of the saddle, which as an above knee amputee can be very difficult. Of course the BTK allows you to do this, however you need to be pretty proficient in it's use, have good balance and  unlike how I feel at the moment be relatively fit. I almost coughed a lung up at the top of the bank, but was well pleased with my efforts.

Only 4 FAILs! here lol
 So there you go there is a short review. I'm sure I will be blogging lots more about my adventures on a PYGA.

Every time I had to ride over this dodgy tree root that sent me all wonky, crashed 4 times
A little bit of coming down hill for a change
 I managed to shoot a bit of video footage today. Could really do with having more flowing trails nearby, everything seems up hill lol. Never mind I had fun and got to try the bike out both climbing, doing some technical slow riding between trees and a few small downwards sections.

I know quite a few of you will watch my video (well I hope you will ) and think wtf is that music playing. Well to b honest I couldn't think of a track I liked and I like this particular song, it kind of sums up how I have been feeling about Mr Hink's,  "How can you mend a Broken Heart" by Al Green.

Ok laters people...

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