Adam Pollard does a Blog

uh oh.. he has found a medium to express himself

Archive for June 2009

7 Things I want in Mountain Bikes:

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1. Internal Gears

Derailleurs are just a hassle. It seems logical to me that gearing should be isolated from the elements. External gearing like derailleurs would make sense if us mountain bikers didn’t ride in the mud … but we do. Internalizing the gearing system would reduce the need for maintenance by a factor bazillion. It could be totally be isolated from rain, mud, grit and grime. The components would just keep on going. If you think about how reliable industrial machinery is, you can start to see how internal gearing would offer a big advantage. By eliminating the problem of mud, etc… the gears wouldn’t need replacing for hundreds of thousands of miles, and they wouldn’t need maintaining for  tens of thousands of miles either. Sure, it’ll be comparatively heavier, but not necessarily significantly heavier, and I would MUCH rather the hassle free nature of internal gears.

2. Solid Disc Wheels

Spoked wheels are a dated technology. They are easier to manufacture, yes, but I’m pretty sure that engineering is capable now of producing decent solid disc wheels. Spokes mean that small buckles can be corrected, but solid disc wheels can be engineered to a greater strength to weight ratio, so you could just simply build a stronger wheel, a wheel that wouldn’t break as easily. Moreover, most of the mass of the mass of spoked wheels is around the rim of the wheel, which gives a very undesirable moment of inertia. The greater the moment of inertia, the greater the “rotating weight”, and thus because disc wheels could be built to a lower moment of inertia, they would “pedal better”.

3. More choice!

I know that it’s unlikely to happen, but I wish that components came in a wider variety of colors and styles. Awesome anodized colors are just awesome. They also sell better too, just look at the latest Spank stuff or the new DMR parts. But not just colors, many components have to settle on a generic “property trade-off”. Usually this is strength-weight, or durability-grip, and I wish that more components came in more varieties. Every rider has their own optimum compromise of strength-weight, etc… and the closer the rider can get to this, the better. I think it just comes down to business at the end of the day – the more varieties, the higher marginal cost. However, I still believe there is a market for very custom parts, and I think it’s something companies should really look into.

4. Less marketing BS

The level of marketing bollocks present in the mountain bike industry today is ridiculous. It’s beyond a joke. I’m fully aware that companies need to sell products and make money, but it’s going well beyond what I think are acceptable levels of marketing crap. How is anyone supposed to make an informed decision when choosing bike parts? Surfing the web doesn’t help. Every website brags about its own special technology, yet doesn’t compare this to its competitors’ technology, or even correctly explain why their respective piece of tech is the best. Magazines don’t help either. Although less subjective than forum reviews, they are still usually just the opinion of one person, and never really of much value. Is there any independent (and reliable!) bike part reviewer?

5. Mud-resistant frame finishing coat

I’m pretty sure something like this must exist. Some kind of final paint coat that helps prevent mud sticking to the frame surface. I don’t mind paying more for this special paint coat, but in muddy conditions I think this could make a big difference. What is the point in shelling out on lightweight components if the first time it rains, you end up with a few pounds of mud on your bike? Racers (especially XCers!) would benefit the most here, but even your average weekend warrior would appreciate it I think too. Think “Bigger Picture”.

6. Even larger pedal platforms

I’ve always loved big bodied pedals. It just feels easier on the foot, hurts less on big landings, and provides greater grip too. It’s one of the reasons I now run Twenty6 Rallye pedals on my big bike. I just can’t stand small, puny pedals. DMR V12s are pretty much the lightest, most reliable, and fairly priced pedal on the market – but they are too small for my feet. After a few big landings my feet hurt… I think pedal platforms could go at least 150% the size of Easton Flatboys. I at least want the choice.

7. Grippier Tyres

Ok, so I don’t quite know how one would produce grippier tyres, but I want them. The grippier the better. There must be a way. Sort it out.

Written by Adam Pollard

June 29, 2009 at 12:02 am

My Trick Step-up Jump

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I took some pics of my trick step-up jump thing a while back. I haven’t really shown anyone it yet, so here ya go. It gets regularly trashed by the local chavs and motocrossers, so it needs tweeking every time I go there. But saying that, its heaps of fun, and a great place to learn bike trickery :). It lives Camberley side of Swinley Forest, and gimme a shout if you want directions or whatever.


Written by Adam Pollard

June 28, 2009 at 10:56 pm

Posted in Trail Building

My Trails: A few initial teaser pics

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I started some trails a month ago. I found a pretty sick location, and I’ve been down there building and riding nearly every day so far. I took these pictures a week or two in, and things have gotten a lot better since :P. Currently, I have about 7 or 8 jumps, a few rollers, and a few berms built. It’s coming along real well :D. The only problem though is that they haven’t seen any rain since these teaser pics where taken… resulting in some very soft and dusty jumps until the rain comes back. Once I get some rain again, the whole place should be as buffed as in these pictures. In a few months, the spot should be dialled – lots of lines, of various difficulty and technicality, and hopefully a hut too 😛 hehe. Should be gooooooooood.


Written by Adam Pollard

June 28, 2009 at 12:05 am

Fame is a mask that eats into the face

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I’m not usually one for poetic quotes. But with the recent news that MJ died, this one couldn’t be more pertinent.

“Fame is a mask that eats into the face”

I don’t know who originally said it, and I don’t even care.

Written by Adam Pollard

June 27, 2009 at 11:49 pm

Posted in Thoughts

Snow Day Photos

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Ok, so I’m bit behind. It snowed on the 2nd of February, and I’ve just taken all these photos off my camera, lol. Regardless, I still think they are worth posting. I mean, hey, how often do us British folk get snow?

A must say, I do like this :). I'm rather happy with the lighting.

Can't really choose between this and the previous photo. Why have one when you could have both?

Not much to say.. It's a tree?

A bit eery, but I like the vibe.

This was actually taken at night. Long exposure and some white balancing :P Freekyyyyyy

This was actually taken at night. Long exposure and some white balancing 😛 Freekyyyyyy

This is one of my favorite photos. I cant put my finger on why, but I guess ineffability is part and parcel with this game. And no, the sky wasnt ACTUALLY purple after it snowed. Bit of raw tweeking there :P.

This is one of my favorite photos. I can't put my finger on why, but I guess ineffability is part and parcel with this game. And no, the sky wasn't ACTUALLY purple after it snowed. Bit of raw tweeking there :P.

So there you have it :). Feel free to comment and/or critique. I wish it snowed more often :(.

Written by Adam Pollard

June 27, 2009 at 11:33 pm

Posted in Photography

I’m back!

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It’s been a while since I last stuck anything up this blog. I was busy with exams. But good news, the exams went well, and A-Dizzle is back, ready to ruin the inter-web with spurious thoughts and arbitrary pictures. I’ve got a good 3 months before I start at Cambridge, so now I actually have the time to keep up this blog thing 🙂

Take it easy


p.s. “A-Dizzle” is my name on da streeeets…

Written by Adam Pollard

June 27, 2009 at 11:13 pm

Posted in Uncategorized