Back from Injury, Fat Bike ASMR, & Berm Creek

Back from Injury, Fat Bike ASMR, & Berm Creek


Back in November I broke my collar bone during
a rushed jump build on Berm Creek. If this jump looks small on video, that’s
because it is. I still don’t really understand what happened,
but I guess it was a combination of soft dirt, carelessness, and bad luck. Anyway I spent the last three months doing
repair and hack focused videos to keep the content coming. Although I am proud of that content, it was
definitely missing something. Thankfully I have great friends. Kevin and Phil helped me dig for a day, enhancing
the sketchy little double I had crashed on. But I knew it would be months before I could
actually ride this new and improved jump. Since healing up, I’ve been waiting for
some dry weather to finally hit this thing. After a couple of warm days, the lip and landing
just need a little grooming before they’re ready. Now, it’s finally time for redemption. It’s smooth, effortless, and fun, just like
a small backyard jump should be. But for true redemption, I need to hit this
jump on the very bike I crashed on. Introducing the new and improved Murder Machine. I did make some changes to it in the name
of additional dirt jumperfication. In addition to removing the dropper post (reluctantly)
I installed a oneup EDC kit to run the front brake hose through the steerer tube. With that and no dropper cable, the Murder
Machine is now barspinnable. Except I forgot about one thing. The EDC cap tightens with a cassette tool,
and there’s now a brake hose in the way. Unwilling to give up, I cut a notch in a cheap
cassette tool so that it would fit over the brake hose. Now I can use this modified tool to tighten
the headset. With that, there’s only one thing left to
do. It still doesn’t feel anything like a dirt
jumper, but that’s because it’s not. In any case, all is now right with the world. Although this jump makes my recovery official,
I have been easing back on to the trail for a few weeks now. I even went on a night ride the other week,
pushing myself a little harder than I probably should have. But even during my recovery I was riding gravel
to stay in shape. And to keep things interesting, it was usually
on my El Oso fat tire bike. I got this Diamondback El Oso last winter
to ride in the snow, but the snow never came. This year when it did snow, my clavicle was
broken so Phil was the only one to get use out of this bike. And use it he did. But that’s not the only back story involving
the El Oso. In December, we filled the rear brake with
Johnson’s Baby oil as part of a year long test. You see, some brake systems use mineral oil
blends as hydraulic fluid. Johnson’s baby oil is mineral oil so it
should work fine in theory, right? Well, these brand specific blends actually
do have different boiling points, viscosities, and other properties which, we can assume,
make them optimal for the brakes they were designed for. So to obtain evidence as to whether or not
this hack is safe, I need to burn through a set of brake pads using nothing but baby
oil. Hence this year long test. But having never really taken this bike out
on a trail, I’ve got my work cut out for me. To ride enough downhill for a proper test,
I’ll need to push this beast up a few mountains. With a proper granny gear, loads of traction,
and the fact that this is technically a hardtail, the El Oso climbs surprisingly well. I can’t push it as quickly as my trail bike,
but that’s not much of a surprise. In addition to this being my first real trail
ride on the El Oso, it’s actually my first time descending on a fat bike, period. I’m definitely gonna take it slow and proceed
with caution. Okay, so my thoughts on the El Oso. Traction is excellent, but cornering takes
some getting used to. You can really feel the gyroscopic effect
of those massive wheels, especially when going fast. Jumping feels easier than you would think,
but again making adjustments mid air requires more effort due to the mass of the wheels. But that effort is worth is just for fat tire
ASMR. As for the baby oil brake, it felt fine. For one ride I’m sure any liquid including
apple juice would feel fine, but this test has many months remaining. Before my ride the rear brake felt spongy,
and it needed a bleed pretty bad. I don’t know yet whether this was somehow
related to the baby oil, or just a careless initial bleed by yours truly. Both are possible, but time will tell. I’ve also been checking the temperature
of the rotors and hoses after long descents to see if they ever approach the boiling point
of mineral oil. So far it hasn’t even come close, but I’ll
continue to keep an eye out during future descents. I know this video has been all over the place:
Berm Creek, Clavicle, Murder machine, baby oil fat bike….we certainly had a lot to
catch up on. But it’s good to be back, and I feel I’ve
returned a better more calculated rider. If you’ve ridden big stuff, it’s easy
to think that you’re invincible on anything smaller. But that’s just not the case. I guess with experience, comes wisdom. Again, it’s good to be back and from here
on, things should start getting back to normal around here. Thanks for riding with me today and I’ll
see you next time.