Thursday, July 21, 2011

New Wheels: 2011 Kona Dew Review

I was surprised with a new set of wheels this week: a 2011 Kona Dew in a sleek and not girly matte black. I've been admiring the Kona Dew ever since renting one in Monterey, CA for an easy 30+ mile ride around 17 Mile Drive and Pebble Beach a few years ago. It's very lightweight and easy to handle. I used to have a 2007 Specialized Crossroads Elite (which I just sold on Craigslist), which I used a lot around town for errands, but was really heavy and a little too small for me. We rode our bikes down to Main Street to go bar hopping during carmageddon last week, which is mostly downhill, but felt like so much work on my old bike. So much effort (combined with the heavy drinking at six different bars) that we left our bikes locked up on Main Street overnight and drove our bikes home the next day. I love the Kona Dew; I rode to the Promenade and back this afternoon and barely broke a sweat. The 53 centimeter frame is so much more comfortable for me, all the components work smoothly and the bike feels very responsive and energy efficient. It's amazing what a difference there can be. We also contemplated the 2010 Dew Deluxe which was on sale for only $99 more, but we decided that caring for the disc brakes would be a little more hassle and the regular Dew was lighter. The Dew Deluxe does shift a little smoother and the disc brakes are definitely quicker. K. picked the bike up from Wheel World in Culver City who were really great to deal with and not at all pushy. I've already ordered a new topeak rear rack and side mirror from Amazon, just debating a new rear basket, and I'll be completely outfitted!

Update: the fully outfitted bike, with Topeak Explorer rack and Mirrycle handlebar mirror from Amazon and Topeak MTX rear basket from Sport Chalet. I had read a lot of reviews on the Topeak rear basket so wasn't surprised to find that it didn't fit my bike perfectly since I have a smaller frame and lower seat. The basket hits against my seat which doesn't bother me, and I need longer screws to attach the top bracket. Not a big deal. I tested it out today and the basket works well.
The old wheels, served me well for 2.5 years, but I'm happy to be moving on

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