A big brown truck delivered two beautiful large boxes for me yesterday with a ‘Shipped From’ address somewhere in Marietta, Georgia. One was at least 24" and one was at least 36", if you catch my drift.
My anticipation was so great I took off from work early. As I walked to my truck to leave, I was horrified to see dark skies and threatening rain! No! My inaugural ride(s) must be today!
Upon arriving home, I went to the tool shed before even going in the house to retrieve the necessary hand tools for assembly. Back inside, I moved the boxes to another room and cut them open with trembling hands.
Wow. Wow. Wow! A Qu-Ax 24" Muni is a very impressive piece of equipment! It made my Sun 28" look like a toy. And the new Radial 36" is just as impressive, in size if not in quality.
The wheel and hub of the Radial are definitely impressive, but the plain chrome uni-crown frame is fairly basic.
The Qu-Ax frame, however, is a sight to behold. Beautiful paint and welds, and clearly strong as an anvil. No more bent seatposts like on the cheapo Sun.
And that 3" tire! Wow, wow, wow!
Assembly of both was straightforward. The Radial came with the wheel mounted to the frame. The Qu-Ax required assembly of the bearing holders. Am I the only one who worries about tightening them properly?
The only assembly problem was the Qu-Ax seatpost, which required two cuts with the pipe-cutter to achieve the right length, and a lot of sweat and grunting for insertion into the frame, even with silicone spray easing the way. You hardly need a seatpost clamp!
The rain was still falling lightly but I decided the beasts must be tamed, so I took out the Radial first.
One mount attempt, two, and I was riding! This is the second time only I’ve ridden a Coker/Radial, the first being for all of three minutes. A few hundred feet down the block I dismounted, adjusted the seat height, and remounted on the first try.
I needed to get home and do some other chores, but I couldn’t stop! I made a quick 3-mile loop around the bay near my house and couldn’t believe the effortless speed. I can’t wait to get a cycle computer! And bumps that would upset the 28" passed below like marshmallows.
Back home, I wiped the wet Radial down with a rag and WD-40, and grabbed the Muni.
Despite the seat being set a bit too low, I quickly became comfortable enough on the Qu-Ax to mount, ride backwards, hop, and generally zip around with more aplomb than previously possible on the 28". And man, those 170mm cranks are so-o-o long! Especially so after becoming used to the 125’s on the 28".
In just a few minutes, I was dirty, sweaty, tired, and loving it. A great first experience on my two new toys. Today at lunchtime I’ll hit the b&ke trail near work for a quick spin on the Radial, waiting patiently for me right now in the back seat of the truck.
The good dirt trails are a 45 minute drive away, so I’ll have to wait 'till this weekend to break the Muni in properly. I feel 30 years younger!