Saturday, 26 October 2013

Moots Psychlo-X RSL

Well... this is going to be an intense session of high end craftsmanship appreciation.  I "accidentally" ended up with a Moots Psychlo-X RSL, which in my opinion is THE flagship of titanium machining technology.  In 2012, this bike won the Best Cyclocross Bike award at the NAHBS.  There's a correlation that surprises even me between NAHBS kudos and my 2 wheeled wardrobe.  Thanks Shawn for the inadvertent opportunity.  After 3 weeks of improving my ability to ride, I've put enough miles on it to say that it's the nicest (non-mountain) bike I've ever owned... I'm not even going to narrow down the road/'cross distinctions.

Ahh, beautiful bikes.  Relative to the non-RSL frame, the RSL has a lot of subtle technique applied to the tube set to lighten and stiffen the end product.  See if you can spot the difference from the near identical twin before you get to the bottom...

Fully housed cable routing for the 11 speed rear derailleur.  I've gone with the Ultegra 11-32 cassette which is pretty wide range.  In the back you can see the new TRP dual floating piston cable pull Spyre brakes.  They're awesome.  I've post photo shoot matched front and rear rotors, and have elected to go 160mm for both.

I might end up using a larger front ring than the 34 pictured here, but a) I had this 34 lying around, and b) until I get some miles in, I need easy gears post this broken arm lack of fitness ordeal.  I like the clean lines without a front derailleur.  The eggbeaters with red accents actually are subtle enough not to be red overload but look nice with the crank and the red pinstripe around the Moots logos.  Hidden behind is a Chris King press fit bottom bracket.
Thomson seatpost and Gobi saddle are my go-to's.  An avid weight weenie would see this saddle choice as most material location to shed a quarter pound, but I like the shape, and for 'cross remounting durability I feel better with the non-carbon rails.

Dura-ace 9000 controls, Thomson X4 stem and KFC bar with Fizik big thick tape.  I swear I feel a bit of torque motion occasionally with the 2 bolt Thomson stem, even the way the stem cap interlocks... could be my imagination, but I elected for the 4 bolt X4 to allay that sentiment.  I ride a 2cm shorter stem (100mm) than Shawn's to adjust for our reach difference.  King Headset and beauty Moots head tube badge.  Cable spacers to keep things quiet up front are a subtle touch.  Jagwire compression resistant cable housing.

Clearly a machine that's faster than I am.  Enve 29er XC wheels and Enve 'cross fork up front.  I put water bottle cages on post the glamour shoot and with them it's 19.01lbs ready to roll.

Here's the crux of the story if you haven't spotted the difference from Bunnin's.  Note the rear brake cable runs along the underside of the top tube in the picture below.  This is where it was off spec to Bunnin's - logically for a 'cross bike he wanted it run along the top of the top tube.  Moots noticed they welded it wrong vs. the agreed upon final PDF spec sheet and when informing him, said they couldn't file them off and reweld, so they built a new frame.  What could have been stale custom geometry inventory all winter turned into another sale...  after seeing his up close, admiring it, pondering it, debating my own "almost" 'cross bikes, reviewing geometry spec PDF files against each other, a tape measure session Shawn's living room while we were both crippled, I pulled the trigger on the discounted overstock frame!  We're nearly twins, although this won't help me go as fast as him (from the Moots delivery, other than the brake line routing, the only other difference is I requested a black seat post clamp).

Interestingly, post interbike, it seems the new Moots Psychlo-X standard frame spec has moved a lot closer in terms of geometry to Shawn's custom.

I've ridden it up and down the street, and it feels as lovely as any high end manufactured machine would when it's crisp and new.  For now I can't give it a test ride to justify opining on it's overall feel, as my arm cringes from anything bumpy or aggressive.  

1 comment:

  1. Awesome bike! You're lucky to have that opportunity ;) I have an odd question though...what is the length of your head tube? I'm considering something custom and I am curious as to what it would look like...