I'm itching to get a proper ride in on the new bike but just haven't had the opportunity since building it up. Just a few commutes to work and errands around the neighbourhood so far.
I got the indexing working on the second attempt and taped the bars when I was happy with the positioning of everything. I hadn't wrapped drops since my 10-Speed days as a teenager but made a reasonable job of it. I'll give myself an 8 out of 10 with some room for improvement.
The fat 45c Panaracer FireCross tyres are a tight fit but are awesome off-road. I will get some skinnier cross tyres at a later date or possibly some Schwalbe Marathons that will work better on pavement "and" dirt. The FireCrosses are deadly slow on the road, even inflated to the maximum 85psi. They have an aggressive, widely-spaced motocross-style tread and hum like a 4WD tyre on the tarmac. I wanted the fattest tyre possible for a couple of mountainbike races next year so I'm happy with the purchase, just wondering if there is a fat alternative that performs better on the road. I have put on some cheaper Vittoria 35c rando tyres since these photos were taken and it's rolling a lot faster now.
The Paul brakes are very powerful compared to the old Shimano canti's on my Avanti commuter. In the dry they feel as strong as the discs on the Pug but maybe with a little less modulation.
The bar-end shifters are taking a little while to get used to. Shifting is easily accomplished but I still have to think about each shift if you know what I mean, not intuitive yet. I hope that comes with time.
More pics when I can ditch the kids and if it ever stops raining. That could be easier said than done.