Saturday, 26 February 2011

Azub..the perfect bike.

The journey begins

Without pointing too much blame in anyone direction, it quickly become clear that I spoke to the wrong people who advised me badly for my choice of `bike No.2` and of the options that were available and advised to us. The Azub Ibex, although a great bike in itself was in fact not ideal for the type of journey I was wanting to make.



Within a few test rides I had already fallen off and realised that the under seat steering was very vulnerable, taking full impact with every fall, whereby the Magura brakes that I had been advised were the best were in fact very very powerfull, but also very vulnerable and difficult to repair if broken. Because of their position on the end of the under steering bars, they were protruding too much from the handlebars and were damaged on two occasions, the last which completely destroyed them.
These hydraulic lines cannot be joined if broken; the metal fittings were of unusual thread; special bleeding tools needed to be carried, all making this system vulnerable and very difficult to repair.

Simplicity and practicality is a must.

Various modifications to the original expedition luggage carrying became obvious, the heavy items being best situated as low and as central to the geometry as possible, having less impact on the stability and handling, so the space between the wheels under the steering looked very practical, so with ideas that my friend had also developed, many hours was spent fabricating brackets and bits of aluminium, to extend the carriers to this part of the bikes geometry, which proved to be a perfect ride when tested for the first time.

After all the work, testing and fabricating we were close to realising what we should have considered right at the start of our bike enquiry….we should have spoken directly to someone who knew what they were doing! Azub directly.

Finally we contacted Azub to let them know about our experiences and alterations that we felt was needed for our journey, they were at first a little confused about our modifications, our needs and our overall disappointment with our bikes, as we expressed ourselves that we felt they were not the perfect bikes that we had expected for such an investment.

They immediately informed us that in no way would they have advised us on such a choice of bike and components for such a journey that we were hoping to do, we should have contacted them at the start. Azub were genuinely upset for our delay and extra cost to our plans, so they invited us to visit them in the Czech Republic, whereby they would help us to put together a strong bike exactly suitable for our needs.

Already impressed with this helpful attitude it was further elevated after arriving at their factory to be welcomed by what I would describe as a family run business, passionate and dedicated to the product and its customers, their statement from their web site really does reflect this attitude.

fabricating the new `low rider` luggage carriers

Azub5...or maybe Azub6?

I am humble and eternally grateful for this experience and now with their help I do indeed have the best bike for my adventure coming shortly in April.

Thank you especially to Honza who had the task of taking care of our needs, putting up with us, inviting us into their homes and listening to all our crazy ideas and finally for advising us correctly.

A big thank you to all the team at Azub for their patience whilst we were there using all their tools, equipment, parts, the bad smells as fish and guests do after three days…!

Just a perfect bike now and a pleasure to have met you all, memories that will carry me far.

Thank you.

Left to right..Myself, Melanie, Fabien

My wheel being built
Talking with Honza about our needs
Azub 5 taking shape
Now all we need to do is just ride.....

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