Friday, January 9, 2015

Thomson Setback Seatpost

Making a change in one part of a system can often bring unanticipated results in other areas of that system.  I did anticipate the need for a wider seat when I changed the handlebar of my titanium general purpose bike but after about 40 miles on my new seat a different problem I didn't see coming appeared.  While the new Brooks B67 feels wonderful I just couldn't shake the feeling that I was sitting just a little too forward of the bottom bracket.  

After thinking about it for a while it dawned on me that ten years ago when I was choosing parts to build up the Ti GP I decided on a zero setback seat post to help minimize the effect of an already long top tube and traditional mountain bike flat bars.  Leaning forward extremely to reach the bars the zero set back post always felt right to me.  Now setting much more upright the geometry suddenly seemed off. 

Although I am getting better at managing my condition known as BPAD -(Bike Parts Acquisition Disorder) it doesn't take much to convince me a new part might just be the answer to all my problems.  My New Year's Resolution for this year is to make an effort to shed some carbon fiber from my bike and the seat post seemed like a perfect place to start.    

From the begining I've had a Thomson Elite stem on my bike and long been a fan of the component maker.  With the stem already on the bike it makes total sense that I ditch the old carbon post and get another Thompson alloy part to match.  I opted for the Elite model instead of the higher end Masterpiece.  The Elite is a beautiful piece of work on its own but I'm not too concerned with weight savings at this point which is all the Masterpiece really amounts to.

The cool thing about bicycles is that they are truly universal.  Quality bike parts are made all around the world.  Wheels from France rolling on American hubs; Handlebar and gears from Japan, An English saddle, American stem and post all coming together creating a fine machine.  Easy enough one could add Italy and Germany and many others to that mix.  A neat metaphor in there somewhere I think.   

Thomson posts are very well machined and have the two-bolt clamp system I like best.  The engraved tilt degree indicator marks are also a nice touch.  Of course it was 9 degrees F the day I installed the new seat post but the sun was out and we all know it's completely irrational to have a new bike part and not test it out so I kitted up for the conditions and headed out.

After a spin out around a couple country blocks I confirmed that the set back Thomson has positioned me right on the sweet spot.  Now if spring will just get here.

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