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Price: £2.100.00 as tested. Frameset £800.00 / From: Ison Distribution,

Surly has always been individual and self-confident in its outlook. From pioneering the first production singlespeed (the 1x1, which pre-dated even Kona’s Unit and the On One Inbred) to popularising one of the first 29ers (2001’s Karate Monkey), Surly has always been focused on the fringes of the cycling world, even when those fringes encompass ‘just riding your bike and doing fun stuff’.

Surly has always prided itself in its no-nonsense 4130 cromoly steel frames, always made to accept the biggest tyres possible and to be as compatible as possible with as many of those components that you have lying around in the shed.

A few years ago now, amazingly back in 2012, Surly introduced its Krampus model, and singlehandedly popularised a whole new tyre size: that of 29in x 3.0in, or 29+. this was, and still is, a tyre size that baThes most riders and which is ignored by most of the bike industry. Trek’s Stache is one of the only other believers, along with Salsa, Surly’s stablemate at Quality Bicycle Products. And, with the exception of a few small builders, that’s about it for 29+ believers, which is going to limit any tyre, rim or further bike development for simple economic reasons. However, for those who have tried this tyre size, it really is measurably diTherent and both grippy and stable. Fans of the wheel size tend to be rabid disciples, so this oddball size is probably going to stick around for a while. (Average-sized riders get a choice, Surly also offers the ECR in 27.5+ in sizes medium and below. 29+ comes in medium (as here) and larger)

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About Singletrack

We’ve got our usual dose of adventure for you, with three UK based rides to inspire you to hit the trails. Path of a Prince – Pete Scullion takes us on another historical Coffin Road tour, this time in the wilds of Scotland, in the footsteps of Bonnie Prince Charlie. Trail Hunter – Border Blasting – Tom Fenton heads to the northern fringes of England in search of more of the best trails the UK has to offer, this time skirting the Scottish/English border on a frigid day. Classic Ride – Duddon Valley – Tom Hutton takes us on a tour on the Western side of the Lake District – away from the big tourist crowds, but still big on scenery. Quit Your Job – We look at people who have made the leap from ‘normal’ jobs to working in the bike industry. Could you quit the rat race and turn your hobby into a job? Bamboozled – Wil takes on a build-your-own bamboo bike kit. Will he glue himself to the frame? Will he be attacked by a panda? Will he build himself a bike, or a bike shaped object? Wil tells us the tale through his epoxy-induced high. Bike Test – Unsprung Heroes – Chipps checks out fully rigid bikes from Kona, Pinnacle and Surly and discovers that no suspension doesn’t mean no fun. It just needs a re-evaluation of your outlook. Group Test – Platform Clip Ins – Wil checks out eight pairs of pedals with platforms for support as well as cleats for security. Full reviews of the best four will be published in this issue, along with summaries of the runners up. Room 101 Charlie The Bikemonger sets all judicial process to one side and passes his decrees on what will or will not be banished from the cycling world for ever. Column: Jason Miles Our award winning columnist is settling in to his new life in Scotland – by going on a ski holiday, where he learns that being a beginner again can be refreshing. And finding a whole new avenue of kit to need.