In the very early days of design development during the 1960s & 70s, many rides ended in a very long walk home due partly to the relative scarcity of cars, but mainly to component failure very often caused, in the ultimate analysis, simply by nasty stuff getting into the wrong places.
Posted by ajantom
If you were to show this bike [the Landseer] to most MTBers, they’d probably dismiss it out of hand.
High BB, short wheelbase, zero length stem, very high, relatively narrow bars. Start looking at the details though and it makes a lot of sense for your average (whatever that is!) UK rider – especially if you enjoy hacking along bridleways in the kind of conditions that are typical to a British winter (and sometimes summer!).
My aim was to ‘design out’ the possibility of these kinds of component failure so that going for a cross-country adventure would be as carefree as possible. There were no mountain bike trails in those days and I would have to traverse all kinds of terrain; deep mud and flooded tracks could be common features on any ride, even in high summer. It really doesn’t help if, while struggling through a quagmire, you’re also have to worry about potential damage to the transmission system, particularly jockey wheels, derailleur mechanism, chain and pedal bearings; and with suspension, bushes and pivots as well.
Posted by slapheadmofo:
“There aren’t gonna be a many who feel that riding a hybrid through ankle deep mud while trying to avoid losing an eye every couple feet is a good time.
Riding in deep wheel-sucking mud for the most part flat-out sucks IMO. As does spending lots of time riding in ATV or Jeep ruts. There are other types of terrain I have far, far, FAR better times riding. I can’t imagine seeking out stuff like that while ignoring and bypassing all sorts of incredible hand-built single-track along the way.”
Any sensible cyclist, after an encounter with extensive mud is, at the very least, going to clean, inspect and lube their machine as soon as possible after a ride, often when all you really want is a long, hot shower!
If the nasty stuff has worked its way inside, which it probably has, dismantling, cleaning and re-assembly is absolutely necessary to prevent further excessive wear.
Maybe you don’t mind spending lots of time on maintenance.
Maybe you don’t mind shelling-out for replacement bits.
Maybe you don’t mind frequently leaving your bike at the store to have new componentry fitted, and paying the bill.
Judging by the number of bicycles gathering in dust in sheds, it looks like quite a lot of people (who have thought enough about cycling to buy a bike) do mind.
The Landseer is designed to be, as far as possible, unaffected by the nasty stuff.
The photo at the top is of an earlier prototype, which, despite having ploughed through thick sticky mud, has a chain that remains relatively clean.
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