Ridley X-Bow

My Avanti Blade 8 C has been at Lifecycle for the past two weeks and I haven’t heard a peep from them. I’ve had enough of the thing breaking down, and I don’t trust it not to fall apart underneath me.

Trust is an important thing to have in a bike. The amount of times the internal hub has skipped a gear as I’ve been climbing a hill, seized up or started making noises halfway home, and the number of times I’ve been left weeks waiting for Lifecycle to get back to me has left me angry and stressed out. Not being able to trust my bike to get me places is not only stressful, but makes me not want to ride at all.

For the last two months I’ve been riding my fallback bike which is a bit small for me and doesn’t have a pannier rack, meaning I have to wear a backpack which gets a bit sweaty. It’s a good bike, very reliable, and pleasant to ride short distances, but it’s not especially good for commuting.

So after stumbling upon a new bike store in Aspley, and stumbling inside only to stumble upon the perfect bike, I took twenty-four hours to arrange my funds and buy the sucker.

Black & white bike beside a bike path, complete with pannier and helmet.

It’s a Ridley X-Bow (Crossbow), which is billed as an ideal commuting bike. I took the opportunity to upgrade it with mud guards and a pannier rack, and fitted it with a set of SPD pedals that I had traded Thom for assorted cheeses days earlier.

A black & white bike on the back of a blue Hyundai Getz, in front of the red facade of the Aspley Bike Hub (no longer there)
The Aspley Bike Hub was a great bike shop, but is no longer there.

It’s a very nice bike.

It’s going to take a bit of getting used to because I’ve only ever ridden anything with flat handlebars, and these have three spots where hands can go. The gear changing mechanism is a bit strange to me as well, but I’m sure it’ll be fine once I’m used to it. Furthermore I’ve not ridden a bike with SPD pedals despite owning the shoes for a year now, so that will take some getting used to too.

I took it for a quick spin before it got dark this afternoon so I could work out how to use the pedals in particular, but I want to take it out for a longer ride before I have to go back to work on Monday, just to get the hang of it.