So last time I told you I’d borrowed a 2014 Orange RX9 from the Bike Workshop to test ride over the Christmas period.
I’ve now taken it out on a couple of rides, to get a feel for the shape, seating position and shifters. I must admit it felt pretty weird, I’m not used to being so hunched over like that. Also it took some getting used to, shifting gears by pushing to the left rather than pulling a lever towards me.
I was really grateful for the crosstop levers though, as I’d suspected, they made the transition so much easier. I stayed on the top bars for a little while so I could get a feel for the bike first. I’m used to a heavy, clunky old Ridgeback frame, and this is ridiculously light in comparison. Also the tires on the RX9 are a bit thinner.
The crosstop levers made it easier to get used to the bike, though I found it strange to have my arms so close together. The handlebars are a lot more narrow on this.
Once I’d gotten used to the frame and wheels I decided to ride on the hoods. It was really weird to be so hunched over. I also found that I had to stretch more than was comfortable to reach the brake levers. We adjusted the seat and tilted the handlebars back slightly and that sorted out the problem.
Today I rode it out on the Bristol to Bath Railway Path, turning off at Saltford to get some chips and a coffee at The Jolly Sailor. I’ve definitely gotten used to the feel of the bike and built up enough confidence to ride on the road from Warmley to Kingswood.
It rides really well! It’s got an aluminium frame so it doesn’t absorb the shocks as much as I’d like, but I don’t have the budget for steel right now, and taking a little air out of the tires should sort that out. Otherwise I really like it, and I’ve decided to buy it! I’m going to get it powder coated blue, and replace the saddle, but otherwise it’s good to go. Very excited!