Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Test drive

KMX Tornado owners are far and few in between. There just aren't that many of us so it was surprising to find that someone I found on the forums (bentrideronline.com) lives locally! We scheduled to meet up and Mike pulls in with a full size flatbed tow truck. Not just any truck. It had at least a 12' long bed!

I never expected to ride the Tornado, but just to check out the different mods. The first thing Mike said to me though was,

Hop on!

Wow! Hopping on for a test drive, I found his Tornado was much more quiet than mine. The drivetrain was whisper quiet. Asking about the mods, I learned that it has the Terratrike idler - yes the $150 one. It's tough to tell if it really translates to more efficiency without riding it on my normal routes, but it was definitely more quiet. This Tornado also had new SRAM chains. It takes three to fit on the trike.

The one thing I really wanted to see were the Schwalbe Big Apple tires. They didn't look nearly as big as I imagined it would. For me, this is good thing. I was worried it would look too bulky, but it looks just fine in person.

Taking the Tornado for a sharp high speed turn, I found it gets up on two wheels a lot more easily than mine with stock no-name tires. Later, I found that this might be b/c the tires were filled to the maximum wheel capacity of 45lbs. Maybe lower pressure would keep all the wheels grounded.

The other thing I noticed were the super tiny handlebar mirrors! In all honesty, they were way too small for me. My current Blackburn Multi Mirror has at least 300% of the reflective surface area as these mirrors. I avoided using Mike's mirrors during my test run and just did a head check.

Mike was a great guy. Excellent personality. He definitely loves his trike! Good to have met another KMX fan!


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