'bent on ebay: Challenge Mistral SWB OSS

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Simon Brooke, Jun 8, 2004.

  1. Simon Brooke

    Simon Brooke Guest

    Once again, not mine. Looks competent.

    <URL:http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=3-
    681751105>

    If anyone objects to me posting these, let me know and
    I'll stop.

    --
    [email protected] (Simon Brooke)
    http://www.jasmine.org.uk/~simon/

    Tony Blair's epitaph, #1: Here lies Tony Blair. Tony
    Blair's epitaph, #2: Trust me.
     
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  2. Peter Clinch

    Peter Clinch Guest

    Simon Brooke wrote:
    > Once again, not mine. Looks competent.

    Looks very nice, and that's what I thought of the one I took
    out to test =

    from Amsterdam earlier in the year. Unfortunately a few
    hours later the =

    only really positive thing the test told me was that Magura
    hydraulic=20 rim brakes were Really Very Good and I was a
    bit underwhlemed otherwise := -(

    Part of the problem was undoubtedly that the seat just
    wasn't quite=20 right for me. Other people will feel the
    same niggles about the=20 Optima/HPVel seats I personally
    like as we're all slightly different=20 shapes, so this
    isn't really a dig at the Mistral except in a personal=20
    context. However, beyond the shape of it there's the fact
    that=20 Challenge have the seat as effectively an integral
    part of the frame,=20 and though that's quite neat as an
    engineering solution it does mean=20 there's not very much
    decoupling you from road shock from the front=20 wheel (no
    suspension and it's only a 20" wheel so doesn't eat holes
    and=20 bumps that well). If you're only riding on good roads
    that's not a=20 problem, but I ride on some pretty poor ones
    and on the block paved=20 roads[1] that seem common around
    the Amsterdam area induced so much=20 vibration that the
    bike was less comfortable than the hired vanilla=20 Batavus
    roadsters we'd been using earlier in the day, and IMHO
    that=20 isn't really good enough for a bike that's likely to
    be bought (and for=20 a lot of money too!) because it's
    meant to be very comfortable :-( You could probably work
    around this by adding a Pantour hub or 20" sus=20 forks, but
    either option is Real Money you'll have to spend on top
    of=20 the purchase price.

    The spiel says more versatile than the Hurricane from which
    it is=20 derived. Well... maybe, but since it's higher it'll
    be slower so not=20 much use if you want to tear up tarmac
    low to the ground, and for=20 touring the comfort
    limitations on poorer surfaces alluded to above=20 strikes
    me as a definite problem. To cut a long story short, I
    wouldn't =

    give Challenge =A3600 (the eBay start price here) for a
    brand new one, an= d=20 paying more than twice that for a
    Grasshopper or Fiero strikes me as=20 better value for money
    to be honest.

    But some people seem to like them: 'bentrideronline seemed
    rather more=20 complimentary than I've been, but as always
    with these my advice is try=20 before you buy if you can. I
    think Bikefix have a Mistral in, and=20 Norman Fay in South
    Shields is a Challenge dealer IIRC.

    Pete.

    [1] think of those brick driveways, not cobblestones. These
    provide no=20 problems at all on typical Dutch roadster,
    and they didn't trouble the=20 Rainbow Lyner also out on
    the trip. A subsequent NL trip saw worse=20 roads not
    being a problem on a Nazca Fiero or Optima Lynx both
    with=20 rigid front forks so it isn't just 'bents, rigid
    front forks or 20/20=20 SWB configuration --=20 Peter
    Clinch Medical Physics IT Officer Tel 44 1382 660111
    ext. 33637 Univ. of Dundee, Ninewells Hospital Fax 44
    1382 640177 Dundee DD1 9SY Scotland UK net
    [email protected]
    http://www.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinch/
     
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