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Category: Articles

Bike-Fit

Cloud9cyles_bike-fitting

 

What is bike fitting?

A bike fit is a process whereby the Rider and the Bicycle will work together in perfect harmony to give the most efficient power to speed to comfort ratio.

Depending on what type of riding you will do will vary the fit.

For instance if you are competing in time trials and need the bike to go as fast as possible your fit will be very different if you are to embark on a round the world tour.

Once we have determined the style of riding we will then get you onto our adjustable jig and start the process of fitting.

The fitting process takes around 1.5-2 hours and during that process each part of your body that moves and / or is in contact with the bike will be analysed for comfort and power and adjusted as necessary.

At the end of the process your measurements will be recorded and this can be then manipulated onto your current bike and will allow us to see what bikes will fit you should you be in the process of getting a new one.

 

Bike-Fit

Why should I get fitted?

Having a fit is one of the most important parts of cycling.

Unfortunately over the last 50 years frame sizing has been dumbed down to simple sizing from XS-XXL.

This is simply not good enough – it is like buying a medium pair of shoes, or a pair of jeans where you just get the waist length and not the leg length.

I understand that it does allow for companies to sell more bikes, and a human body is flexible enough that it can adapt to ride a bike that is not fitted correctly. However riding a bike like this will cause you short term discomfort and long term problems.

We do understand that at a cost of £199 fitting is not cheap but it is superb value as once you get on the bike that is fitted you will ride further, faster and happier.

Numbness, pain and cramps will be a thing of the past and be replaced with pure joy of the freedom of riding a bike!

To date Cloud 9 Cycles have performed over 500 fittings from commuters, to pro-racers and tourers.

Every one has been different but each has had the same outcome of improved performance.

 

How do I get fitted?

Getting fitted is easy – just click on the link below and it will show you Tony’s availability over the next few weeks.

BIKE FITTING IN CLOUD 9 CYCLES 

Simply pick the one you want and book it.

A week before the fitting we will be in touch with a simple questionnaire.

Anything else?

 

Here are just a couple of quotes from people we have fitted:

“I cannot believe how much of an improvement the fit has made – I have just taken 45mins off my personal best for the London 100 – unbelievable – please pass on my thanks to Tony once again!” – Jamie T (Road Racing)

“The 3 of us have just finished our ride from Cusco2Cusco on the bikes you built. We just wanted to say a HUGE thanks to the bikes themselves which were flawless and to Tony as we spent loads of time looking at the scenery rather than moaning about our asses!” – Leo (South American Tour)

“This fit has changed my cycling from 1-2 days a week to 7 days a week! I love it and hate to be without my bike – Thank you Tony and C9!” – Monica G (Commuter)

 

If you have any more questions or would like further information please do not hesitate to CONTACT US HERE

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Hummingbird+yellow

Hummingbird_Yellow+folding+2

To begin I am going to give a quick overview of the Hummingbird bike.

Designed and built in the UK, the Hummingbird is a ultra lightweight carbon fibre bike that can fold up small enough to be taken on public transport or stored inside at home.

The bike was first conceived in 2013 by product designer Peter Craciun who set out to design a bike that could fold simply and ride like a normal bike.

It should also be easy to carry and look great!

In 2015 his idea came to life. Teaming up with Prodrive (the legendary world leading motorsport and advanced technology business) to build the bikes the Hummingbird began to fly!

The Hummingbird’s come as Singlespeeds, 4 speeds and an Electric version – more details here – *link to our selling product page*

Everything about this bike screams premium – from the paintjob to the pedals and below is why we believe it is a better bike than it’s closer competitor, the Brompton.

1) Weight

Bromptons are made of steel and are by their nature heavy beasts – even the Single Speed version that is completely stripped of rack, guards etc weighs in at a hefty 10.5kg!

The Hummingbird on the other has carbon fibre handlebars, forks, frame, seat post and saddle with the rest of the bike being made from premium aluminium. The result is a bike that weighs just 6.9kg!

This weight is insane – it is lighter than many of the Tour De France bikes!

This means that the Hummingbird Bike is truly portable. It can be carried up and down stairs, into flats, onto the tube etc with no trouble.

2) The Fold

Unlike a Brompton where the frame folds in half the Hummingbird frame stays as one piece. This means a stiffer ride with no flex.

The fold happens when the rear wheel pivots under the frame and is locked in place by both the seat post and the handlebars. The pedals can then come off and attach to special places in the rear triangle.

This folded shape is easier to carry than a Brompton and means you don’t continually hit your legs on the pedals!

Hummingbird-raw-carbon

3) The Components

What we love about the Hummingbird is that they use high quality components – premium wheels, brakes, cables and pedals!

Not only does this allow for a smooth ride but you get a lot of miles of use before they need to be replaced.

As they are not necessarily specific to the Hummingbird they can also be upgraded and / or repaired easily should something go wrong.

This is unlike the Bromptons where many of the parts are specific to the bike and so replacing components can be pricey as well as long lead times!

I hope this goes someway to showing you why we are really impressed with the Hummingbird.

Bromptons have been the dominant force behind folding bikes for the last 30 years – and with good reason.

However it is nice now that a competitor that has come to disrupt the market place – one that rides better, is easier to carry and looks awesome!

 

Cloud 9 Cycles are the official stockist for Hummingbird bikes in the UK and we have a demo bike ready for anyone to come and try.

 

If you would like to purchase a Hummingbird bike please click HERE or if you would like some more information please see the CONTACT US page

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Cloud9Cycles-workshop

Cloud9Cycles-workshop

When I was in my early twenties I heard the expression:

“If you can’t be the cheapest you gotta be the best!”

This really stuck with me, it was so simple yet so true and it was at the heart of our business when we started Cloud 9 Cycles almost a decade ago.

We realised that to be the best we had to invest into our staff and our tools and we are really proud of what we have achieved.

Together our staff have over 40 years experience of building, riding and servicing bikes and our we have spent tens of thousands of pounds ensuring our workshop is state of the art and has the best tools for each job.

From P&K Lie Wheel Truing stand to Di2 Analysis Kits right down to Knippex pliers to make sure that every cable is cut perfectly flat.

As we knew servicing was going to be a major part of our business we deliberately put the workshop upstairs in plain sight of the customers.

This not only gives us great light to work in but allows us to easily show customers what condition their bike is in and what parts may need to be changed.

As you can see from the photos below we are pretty anal about making sure our workshop is kept clean and tidy and every tool is easily accessible!

Bike-Service-Workshop

 

By checking each part of the service is done properly will ensure that your bike is riding perfectly and get more mileage out of each component (for instance badly set brakes will wear rims/rotors much quicker).

Once serviced we ride each bike to make sure that it works on the road as well as in the stand (our shop is only a 5min ride to Regent Park which is a great testing ground for Road Bikes)!

We have the skills to service all types of bikes and are as confident working on a Track bike as a Mountain Bike.

The way we service bikes is by asking you to drop your bike off for an assessment – this usually takes around 20minutes and does not need to be booked in advance.

During the assessment we will examine your bike and put a quote together listing what your bike requires to get to full working order.

If you are happy with the quote we will then book you a slot to come in and do the work.

This will ensure that you get to ride your bike as much as possible and we have all the parts ready for you at a convenient time.

Bike-Service-Workshop

This way of operating ensures that most bikes can be dropped off, serviced and collected the same day.

We do keep a good stock of components in the shop (Wheels, Tyres, Dura Ace and Ultegra components etc) and if necessary can perform most jobs on the spot.

For Mountain bike Shock and Suspension servicing we are able to do the majority of these in house however if necessary we often collaborate with the guys at Plush.

If you have any questions about our servicing or would like any further information please do not hesitate to CONTACT US
Book your bike in for service HERE 

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Walter has been a client of Cloud 9 for since early 2016 and at the end of last summer booked a bike fit with Tony Corke to get properly positioned on his existing road bike.

He was already a keen cyclist but promised that if the fit made a big improvement he would treat himself to a new road bike.  

As always Tony got Walter spot on and a few months later Walter popped back to the shop to discuss his requirements.

For his new steed Walter wanted a comfortable bike that was good for commuting and much longer rides. He would like it made from Steel, have a classic shape, could fit wider tyres, take mudguards and would impress!

Walters body shape was quite unusual as he had much longer legs compared to his torso and so it limited us to a smaller number of frames!

The Search Begins.

Over the next two weeks we exhausted some of the most well known Steel brands out there: Surly, Cinelli, Brother, The Light Blue, Orro, De Rosa etc but no one bike did it all…..until!

All City  

These guys have been big in the USA for some time and are steadily gaining traction in the UK for their awesome framesets!

They describe themselves as: We are a company of riders making products for other riders”

Last year they released the Mr Pink frameset and it was one of these in a 52cm that were were on the hunt for – unfortunately all had been sold and we couldn’t find one anywhere and they had been discontinued for the foreseeable future…ahhh!

 The original Mr Pink Colourway - Pink! The original Mr Pink Colourway – Pink!

A few days after we contacted them we got a call from the UK Rep asking if we would like to be one of the first shops to get the new Mr Pink. The new Pinky was similar to last years but had some significant improvements. These included a custom made Whisky Carbon fork (with mudguard eyelets), clearnence for 32mm tyres and one of the nicest paint jobs we’d ever seen.

 The stunning paint job based on the Motorola USA bike team of the 90's! The stunning paint job based on the Motorola USA bike team of the 90’s!

We called Walter and told him the good news and although we were under strict secrecy not to show any photos we promised he wouldn’t be disappointed.

Fortunately he trusted us and this is what we built for him.

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Bespoked 2016 was a great show for ourselves at Cloud 9.  It was a chance to exhibit 2 new models of bike, meet up with suppliers and fellow builders, as well as having a chance to talk about bikes with prospective customers.

NEW MODELS

At the show we exhibited two new models, the first was the Street Fix.  This is a fixed gear city bike that shares the geometry of our Street Racer but with no rear brake and a set of track ends. On the front is a disc brake for controlled stopping.  Wide bars for optimum leverage and carbon components to keep the weight down for quick acceleration. For full information about the model look here.

This bike was entered into the ENVE Build Off. A competition for bikes specifically built with ENVE components. Then the show goers voted for their favourite.  We were delighted to get first place in the competition being crowned Bespoked 2016 ENVE Build Off Champion.  Drop by the shop to see the winning bike and award in person.

The second model released at the show is our new Adventure bike.  It can go wherever you want to ride and for as long as your legs can turn the pedals.  A comfortable and stable geometry will give you the confidence to ride all day long, wherever the journey takes you.  For full information about this model look here.

OUR HIGHLIGHTS OF THE SHOW

Ogre is a builder who specialise in titanium, based in Japan.  Going for quality over quantity he produces around 20 frames a year. The finishing touch to their amazing show bike was the saddle. A hand shaped custom saddle made out of one sheet of titanium.  Now that’s what Bespoked is all about!

At Cloud 9 we always like a mountain bike and what Starling Cycles are making is no exception. A single pivot suspension design gives the bike an elegant simplicity without loosing function. We’re looking forward to the 29er version, no word of when but here’s hoping it’s not too far away.

Finally we have Dear Susan’s awesome single sided mountain bike.  The bike has a single sided fork and mono-stay rear end as well as a pinion gearbox which pivots to tension the chain. Unique thinking to create a unique design.

MORE TO COME

As always Bespoked was an inspiring show. Seeing what other builders were putting out, the paint work available on the bikes and the variety of frame parts available has given us more to think about for next year.  We hope to see you there!

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Remember those dreadful ‘90s TV adverts for discount supermarket chain Netto? The tagline was ‘Netto, Scandinavian for value’? I think there may even have been one with Ulrika Johnson wearing a pointy-horned ‘viking’ hat.

Well I’m happy to announce this post has nothing to do with Scandi bargain-merchants and everything to do with Nitto, the high-quality Japanese component maker.

Let’s start with a little bit of a history lesson.

If you know the brand you can’t even think about Nitto without thinking of Japan, of fixies and of that uniquely Far Eastern sport of keirin. Keirin was created after the second world war by the Japanese government, to was intended to satisfy a hunger on the part of the public for a new form of gambling and as a distraction from the awful economic conditions in the country. It remains one of only four public sports on which people in Japan can legally gamble. 

In the ’50s, as often happens when large amounts of money are changing hands, the keirin tracks all over the country quickly became hotbeds of mob activity, with major public disturbances – even riots – occurring at races that were perceived to have been fixed by the gangs. A governing body was required, to keep the sport honest, and that responsibility fell to the Nihon Jitensha Shinkōkai (which means Japanese Bicycle Association and is usually abbreviated to NJS). The NJS was also responsible for approving the parts used in keirin bikes, to ensure they were of the best quality and that the playing field was fair – an NJS-approved stamp quickly became a globally recognised mark of quality, with only a limited number of brands receiving this honour.

And that’s where Nitto come in.

The brand is as traditional as you like, still made entirely in Japan and still only making metal bike components. They had a look at carbon fibre, but decided they’d rather keep doing something they were the best in the world at than try to learn how to work with this new-fangled material. Their association with keirin also makes them very popular with the fixie scene, which takes a lot of its cues from keirin (whether it knows it or not).

We dug up this awesome video featuring the company president, Akira Yoshikawa, which sheds a little bit of light on just why they have a claim to be one of the best makers of bike components in the world. With gratuitously gorgeous definition and some hypnotic shots of machinists at work, trust us, you’re going to want to full-screen it.

Factory Visit to NITTO from Ryota Kemmochi on Vimeo.

If you follow us on Instagram you’ll have seen this recent build, which features a Nitto handlebar (bars are their ‘signature’ item, if you like). We love building with Nitto gear, because we have confidence that not only is it super-fly, but it’ll also last absolutely ages.

Nitto, Japanese for awesome.

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