Saturday, February 10, 2018

Review of VSF T500 30 speed. Updated for 2018 models.

The T500 and T700 30 speeds are the nimblest and quickest of all the VSF bicycles. They are at 14.08 kgs the lightest . Lets deal with the T500 in this review .

The heart of the bike is the double butted steel frame which gives the bike it's relative lightness and superb compliance (rigidity with comfort ).

Running gear is Shimano Deore . The complete running gear is Deore so all the transmission and braking.This is great spec. The V brakes are very effective and help keep the weight down.

Wheels are Ryde ZAC2000R which are double walled with eyeletted and stainless spokes and of course Deore hubs which really help with free rolling !!

The cockpit is designed to be a sporty fixed A head stem with straightish bars.If you need a higher position I can fit and A head riser or adjustable stem for you

Great lighting with B&M Lumotec Avy LED with 40 lux and standlight, B and M Toplight 2C Plus led with standlight at the rear and Shutter Precision PV-8 hub dynamo.

The rear rack is Racktime Light-It without mounting stays ........light with a good dogleg for supporting your panniers. As usual great quality Japanese bell in bright red paint over an aluminium body, a comprehensive and strong rear stand, Schwalbe Marathon Racer700-35  tyres for fast travelling .

This is a very fast and fine quality commuter/trekking/touring bike . Not really possible to beat this bike if you compare price and quality against other makes of bikes.

Colour for 2018 ebony matt.

Current price £1050.
VSF T500 30 speed

And again

Showing Deore rear derailleur and 10 speed cassette.

Showing Deore chainset and front derailleur

Great spec Exal MX19 rims with double walls and stainless eyeletted spokes.

Great spec Shimano dynamo

Showing front B&M  25 lux headlight, Deore v brakes and SKS mudguards.

I really like the lightweight rear rack with no nonsense dogleg.

Strong and supportive rear stand

Showing outboard Bottom Bracket

Review of VSF Fahhrad Manufaktur T300 model. Update for 2018.

I have just received a ladies T300 trekking bike for a customer. Here is a review of it for you. As many of you know, the T100 is VSF's benchmark commuter,workhorse bicycle. The T300 has various upgrades and these I will describe for you and you will be able to see them clearly through the pictures I have taken. Update for 2018.......over the last few years the T300 particularly in mens version has without doubt become the most popular commuter that I sell.

The main upgrades over the T100 are as follows............

The excellent shimano 8 speed hub gear is upgraded to the even better 8 speed premium or redline gearbox.......essentially this gearbox has better sealing against bad weather and water ingress and has more metal parts than plastic internally.

The braking system is upgraded from shimano v brakes to the excellent Magura HS22 hydraulic rim brakes.

Tyres are upgraded to Schwalbe Marathon Green Guard from Schwalbe Citizens.They are also at 700-40 slimmer than the tyres on the T100.

The hub dynamo is Shutter Precision PV-8 .........light and efficient. Lights are Axa Blueline 30 lux with standlight at the front and Axa slim with standlight at the rear

Saddle is upgraded from Selle Royale Rio to Ariel. Fantastic quality commuter trekking machine as you obviously expect from VSF. Colours as standard this year are ebony metallic and midnight matt. This one is in white as per customer choice. It costs £90 if you ask me to spec your own colour. Please  remember you can order this bike from me as the 8 speed hub geared version described here  also in 27 speed Deore derailleur format. For 2018 there is also a T300 Gates belt drive version and a T300 in XXL sizes 67cms for gents and 60 for ladies.

Price for both 8 speed and 27 speed models £899.
Price for Gates belt drive version £1199
Price for XXL version £1199
Another superior commuting/trekking workhorse from one of the world's best bicycle manufacturers

Here you see the Shimano 8 speed premium or redline gearbox.Note the sturdy stand.

This pic shows Magura HS 11 hydraulic brake levers ,adjustable quill handlebar stem and quality Japanese bell.

Shimano 3N72 hub dynamo and note Exal TX19 double walled rim with stainless spokes.

Here is part of the Magura hydraulic braking system. Mudguards are German SKS of course !

Both front and back lights are powerful leds with standlights made in Germany by Busch and Muller.

Notice fully enclosed chainglider and pump held neatly within the rear rack.

Frame material is quality 25CRMo4 steel which is powder rust. All bolts for fitting are rust !!

Schwalbe Marathon Green Guard tyres. Racktime rack with sprung top section.

Brooks saddles

I keep seeing customers who have bought bikes from me coming back with a Brooks leather saddle transplanted on to the bike.

It must be that they do not realize that I sell them BUT I DO ! and even if the model you require is not in stock ,I can get it in a day

Some great offers on Brooks at present......B17's, flyers,special editions......give me a call.

Special edition B17 world traveller saddles £125

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Review of the VSF Fahrrad TX1000.................another King of Bicycles

I have just received the amazing VSF TX1000 for a customer. It surely is a King of Bicycles.

VSF produce three models equipped with the Rohloff 14 speedhub (which is a work of art in itself )

The TX400 (26" wheel expedition machine )

The T900 700c wheeled and designed for touring on predominantly good roads but able to take on any Alpine or Himalayan ascents.

The TX1000 which is a 700c version of the TX400 essentially.It is an expedition machine for all types of road surface .

All three bikes are steel frames 25 CrM0 4.All fittings are stainless and frames are powder coated.
Rust does not appear on these machines......the quality and attention to detail is too high

I will tell the story of the TX1000 through the pictures and you will understand the quality .

Price approx £2350 depending on state of euro.
Here is King of Bikes the TX1000 with 14 speed Rohloff Speedhub

The 14 speed Rohloff Speed hub.......truly a work of Art.

The Son delux  hub of if not the best hub dynamo in the world.

Son Schmidt Edelux front class again 80 lux.

Magura hydraulic rim brakes of course. German made excellence.

Tubus Tara front Lowrider. Tubus.....German you can buy.........again !

New for 2013 .....the Fast Lifter. An ingenious way of raising bars with an ahead configuration.This has been discontinued for 2014.......returning to standard ahead.

Eccentric bottom bracket..........the only way to go with a proper expedition hub geared bike. You must have vertical dropouts !!

Tubus Cargo at the back.............the best again !!

Busch and Muller with standlight.....german excellence........again.

The very neat Chainglider which keeps clothes clean and helps with chain maintenance. It is incredibly light and neat and easy to work with.

Exal EX 19 double walled............spokes stainless and double butted of course. VSF do not stray from Exal rims.

Quality with the Brooks B17 Imperial

The Rohloff 14 speed shifter

King of the Bikes

VSF Fahrrad Rohloff stories.

Yesterday saw the first VSF T900 Rohloff in a ladies frame leave the shop.Not only that but Veronica decided to cycle the bike back home to Letchworth. I always think it is really great when people do this. Things were so busy in the shop yesterday that I forgot to take a picture of her setting off which is a bit annoying !

The preparation of the two Rohloff equipped bikes for the australian couple who are cycling the bikes back to Melbourne is coming on. However the bikes have had to change as production of the T400 rohloff has been delayed. Therefore the bikes will be a ladies T400 Rohloff and a T900 gents. Of course both of these bikes are more than capable of crossing the world but I will be interested to hear the comparisons after or even during their trip.

There is a lot of work for me to do before Tuesday when the customers are picking the bikes up.They have specific requirements for their journey which include drilling the rims to enable the fitting of schrader tubes ( their preference ), fitting Brooks Flyer saddles,adding front Tubus rack to the T900,changing tyres to even more puncture proof travel tyres such as Schwalbe Marathon Plus Tour. Altura Orkney panniers (which would be my choice for a trip like this ) need fitting front and back along with one Orkney bar bag.

Anyway the preparation goes on.Hopefully before the customers take the bikes I will take some pics and show you what two Rohloff fully equipped VSF Fahrrads look like before they set off.
As promised pictures of the T900 and T400 ladies Rohloff's in expedition mode.They look fantastic and ride beautifully !!

Review of the VSF Fahrrad Manufaktur T800.

Here I present to you yet another world class bike from VSF.........the TX800 Expedition bike. I do of course have one for you to see in the shop.This is the derailleur geared partner of the Rohloff equipped TX1000......... (Remember that in previous reviews of the bikes I have tried to explain that at each grade of bike there is a hub geared and a derailleur geared version.)

This is another superbly equipped stallion of a bicycle...............I do realize that for most of you it is hard to imagine that bikes like these exist and are stocked in my shop......      especially as when you go into the modern downlit shops that you feel so worth in will see nothing like the quality of bikes that I have. Where else will you see in stock many XT, Rohloff and Pinion equipped bikes that I have .......let alone the much more ordinary but still worthy 8 speed bikes !!!

Anyway back to the TX800......... Double butted steel frame.

 Shimano equipped groupset throughout......superb quality.

Braking is Magura HS11 rim brakes.

Both front and rear racks by Tubus.

Lighting is amazing too.......Son powered front dynamo with B&M Lumotec IQ2 EYC with standlight and B&M Line at the rear.......can't get much better.......

Exal MX19 rims .....double walled,eyeletted stainless spokes and the heart of the rear wheel is the XT hub..............these bikes roll beautifully............this leads me to another point...............don't always think of weight especially with commuter/expedition bikes........this shows your lack of knowledge. You need to know how easily the bike rolls when  you pedal.......that is what enjoyable cycling is about.......and you simply cannot beat these bikes for rolling resistance..........believe me.......I know about bikes as you know about your computer programming or your banking or your lab testing etc.

All the other detail......SKS mudguards, Ergon GP3 with integrated bar ends, Japanese bell that works and lasts ,Hebie 611 rear kickstand, Humpert Crab bars and stem..........

So what is the TX 800 really for? Well it is the 700c (larger wheeled version ) of VSF's out and out Expedition bike for rougher roads.......the TX400. That is why it comes as standard with both racks and wider tyres........expedition riding for those who will need to cycle on good and rough roads all over the world but with 700c wheels. Of course it will make a glorious commuter too !!

Enjoy the pics................

Price £ approx 1299 depending on how the euro moves.

The TX 800 Expedition cycle

From the left...........

Showing XT shifter, Magura HS11 brake lever and Ergon grip with integral bar end.

XT front derailleur

XT rear derailleur

You will know these great wheels by now !!

Showing Tubus Cargo rear rack with B&M Line rear Led.

Selle Royal Ariel with gel lookin

Tubus.......the greatest name in bicycle racks.

VSF Fahrrad Manufaktur T700.

Welcome to my review of the VSF T700 Deore XT 30 speed very quick trekking/commuting/touring bike. You will have read my review of the T500 30 speed which is a great,great bike............well here we notch up the spec and quality one more time . Too highly specced for most people in this country to consider......but of course in Germany and Holland where bicycles are much more highly thought of than here .......they are incredibly desirable machines that sell very well. I of course have one in the shop for you to see and ride if you want. You are also welcome to buy one !!

Right lets get down to the detail on this one. Essentially the T500 and 700 look identical to the disinterested or untrained eye. However the T700 is clothed throughout in Shimano XT....... including the rear hub. This is very high spec and makes for a world class machine. Very quick, with superb handling and super slick gear shifting.

The other significant difference between these two super steeds is that the T700 runs with magura HS 11 2 finger hydraulic rim brakes as opposed to the Deore v brakes on the T500.

Lighting is significantly upgraded on the 700. The dynamo is the same but the 700 front light has double the brightness( 50 lux ) with it's B&M Lumotec IQ2 EYC with standlight and the rear led on the 700 is the same as the T900........B&M Line with standlight.

Minor (ish ) other differences are more subtle but are still upgrades on the T700........Ergon GP1 grips on the 700 as opposed to Hermanns on the T500........the saddle is Selle Royal Ariel on both but the T700 has lookin gel for somewhat more comfort.

It is worth pointing out that at each step up there is a hub gear and multi geared bike within that step. The hub geared version of the T700 now runs with the Shimano Alfine 11 speed whereas the T500 hub geared option runs with the Alfine 8 speed .

Price £1150
The T700 30 speed

And from the left......

Showing the XT rear derailleur

And the XT chainset

fantastic B&M Lumotec IQ with 50 Lux

Showing the Magura HS 11 brake system

Same hub dynamo as the T500

Outboard BB.

Exal MX19 double walled with eyeletted stainless spokes

Hebie 611 rear kickstand

Selle Royal Ariel with Lookin Gel

Showing part of cockpit area .......Magura 2 finger lever and XT shifter

XT hub on rear wheel. Rolls beautifully.