2017 Ribble R872 first impressions

With the weather great and a few hours in my possession I was able to try out my new 2017 Ribble R872. Yes, I’m happy.

There she is, the new model R872, with a few improvements over the old model.

As you can see from the pictures above it’s had some fair improvements in stiffness. Fork, headtube, dropouts, and chainstays are all beefed up. BB30 bottom bracket has been ditched in favour of BB86 and chainstays have been increase in size because of this.

On the road the handling is near identical but the power transfer and handling accuracy have improved greatly. I’m not fit at the moment but I definitely impressed myself on a couple of climbs, purely down to the frames ability to channel my efforts.

Well anyway I want to get some more miles on it before I say much more….. full write up soon!

Ribble R872 warranty replacement

Those of you that follow my Instagram will know that recently my Ribble R872 had developed a crack in the seat tube just below the seat clamp.

Now the bike is four years old nearly but nevertheless it shouldn’t be failing like that, especially as I’m one for looking after my kit (and my time to get out on it has be severely capped in the last twelve months or so!).

I contacted Ribble via email to see what they could do, surprisingly they offered to pick it up with no charge so they could assess. This is where things started to go a little wrong…..

Ribble organised a bike case to be sent to me, a week later nothing had arrived so I chased them. It had lost its label apparently and had been returned to them. Ok I thought these things happen and I’m in no rush so they resent it, it arrived within two days. I stripped and packed my bike up overnight and it was ready to go next day, called Ribble and a same day collection was arranged. This was a Friday, 5:30pm came and the bike was still there. Monday came and at 5:30pm the bike was still in my possession. Again jumped on the phone to Ribble to see where the collection was, only to be told the request had definitely been put through to parcel force and that Ribble couldn’t chase them, they gave me the reference number and it was up to me! Now I’m quite capable of doing this I just don’t think I should be, I’m the customer!

Things really started to get amateurish at this point. I called the local parcelforce depot to find out the collection time, only to be told that the collection manager was busy and he would call me back. That happened three times on the Tuesday with no reply. Wednesday came and the bike was finally collected, and only then did I receive a call.

Generally you would expect a 48 hour delivery/collection to be there in 48 hours yes? Friday came and I emailed Ribble to check to see if they had received my bike for piece of mind, to which they replied no and it would probably be with them Monday. The weekend passed as did Monday, on Tuesday I emailed Ribble to see if they had received my bike. They still hadn’t. They then realised that they were able to chase parcelforce and started the procedure to make a claim from them for the value of my lost bike. This involved me listing the complete spec of my bike so Ribble could build a new one as replacement.

As you can imagine this was all starting to get very drawn out and tedious, not to mention embarrassing for Ribble, and it was all down to the involvement of parcelforce. I was disappointed that my custom built bicycle was missing, pissed off at the delay, but also a little excited about the prospect of a new bike. This still wasn’t the end though (but it’s in sight so don’t worry about having too much to read!).

Parcelforce, faced with the cost of a £3000 bill for a custom bike, miraculously found my bike. Amazing what can be done when there’s an official line of complaint isn’t it! Parcel force got the bike to Ribble and they started on the warranty work asap.

Ribble assessed the frame and replaced it. Now the old R872 is no longer in production so they have replaced it with the new model! This was completed pretty sharpish by Ribble and within a day of receiving they had turned it around and it was winging its way back to me.

Despite all the faffing about I was pretty happy with Ribbles service, to replaced a bike that was questionably outside of warranty period, and to do it so quickly when they did finally do receive was impressive. The only real issue I had was I wish they had taken the reigns for chasing parcel force.

Anyway I had a nice parcel waiting for me!

And here it is unboxed…. looking forward to ripping it up this weekend finally!

I’ll let you know how it goes, expect a full write up on how I feel thenew R872 performs!


Renovatio Bikes opens

Well, I didn’t think we had room for another cycle shop in Bournemouth but it seems we do! Just opened is Renovatio in Pokesdown, unit 2 in the calendula place development on christchurch road (opposite the Corpus Christi school).

Yet to visit but will fit one in soon enough, but from what I can see they have supply from importer Reid Cycles and they are selling both new and second hand bikes. 

Their details are as follows;

Address : 

Unit 2 Calendula Place

752-778 Christchurch Road



Tel : 07528568676
Website : https://www.facebook.com/renovatiobikes/

More when I have it…..

Wimborne Vintage Cycle Ride

There’s nothing quite like the gentle rythmic tick of a sturmey archer hub, and saturday we had them out in force.

Last weekend saw Wimborne host the VDub at the pub and Dorset goes vintage festivals. Included in the latter was the Wimborne Vintage Cycle Ride. What’s a vintage cycle ride I hear you ask? Well without wanting to sound patronising, it’s cycling in vintage gear on vintage bicycles. Dress up in your period outfits and pedal your aged steed.

My role during this event was marshalling and the position of ‘Lanterne Rouge’ (TDF terminology for the last man) to ensure all riders got around safely and in one big pack. Leading out was experienced cycle tutor and bike ability instructor Jason Falconer who held chief marshal position.

All riders were gathered together for a pre ride briefing to ensure all were familiar with group ride protocol backed up by a general reminder of cycling with courtesy. That’s not too much of an ask, this is civilised cycling after all!

The ride started out of showground just south of the town centre, we were all kindly guided out onto the main road by the event staff and we were on our way. Working our way through the town centre we headed through Pamphill and toward Shapwick down narrow, high hedged, country lanes synonymous with our south western countryside. The bunch held together with only one stop for a rod brake based mechanical issue. Shapwick was the halfway point of the ride, taking refreshment in the Anchor Inn. There were various takes on the mid ride recuperation with alchohol, caffeine, and good old H2O being quaffed in equal measures. I obviously opted for a swift ale but was limited in choice, if you are reading this The Anchor Inn you need to up your beer game – there were far to many lagers on tap! and not a new world hop to be seen. 

Once all refuelled it was back on the bikes with the second part of the loop taking in a nice gravel section skirting the back of Kingston Lacy estate. There were some lovely views from this trail looking southward over the hedges and across the Dorset countryside. Cycling in this area really is one of the local gems, and probably my favourite area to cycle to from Bournemouth so I recommend you make your way out there. 

Vintage bikes and gravel aren’t the most sound mix and we picked up a puncture on a Raleigh Kingpin, thank goodness for the ease of removing Sturmey archer hubbed wheels, and after a bit of a team effort (and a patch!) we were soon rolling again.

We headed back into Wimborne with a quick stop in the square for group photo and ended up drawing a fair amount of attention! Back on bikes we turned the pedals toward the show ground, and we were soon back where we started. 

Cream teas (with proper clotted cream!) were ready for all on our return, although probably not the ideal recovery food they were super tasty and a perfectly fitted end to our sophisticated cycling adventure!

A very well organised jaunt in good spirits and good company. Wimborne Vintage Cycle Ride was great fun and took in some lovely countryside. With plenty of other things to see and do on the same weekend (and the option to camp on site) the Dorset goes vintage/vdub at the pub/Wimborne vintage cycle ride festival collection is one to see. Testament to this were the people that had travelled to get there, London and Cambridge were two of the locations discovered after chatting to attendees. Just goes to show this vintage cycling thing is pretty popular. It’s well worth a visit, and from what I hear there will be another vintage ride next year! Maybe see you there.

Here are some of my ride pictures:

Wimbore Vintage Cycle Ride This Weekend

Yep, you only have 4 days to get you vintage bike and outfit ready because Wimborne Vintage Cycle Ride is nearly upon us.

I will be helping to marshall the 11 mile route from Wimborne that runs through the gorgeous surrounding country side.

So get your tweed, wool jerseys, plus four, caps, and dresses and come along.

I’m currently working on a new project for the ride and hope it will be finished in time….. featuring lashings of campagnolo! If not the trusty Carlton will come out to play.

The ride is being held as part of the Dorset goes vintage and Vdub at the pub shows just outside Wimborne on the B3078 over the 23rd/24th/25th of June. With the ride taking place on the 24th.

More info HERE

BBB Cycling Full View Glasses

I have been running Oakley Jawbone glasses for about three years now with no real issues. So why did I need a new pair? Well mainly because I can’t really keep my money in my wallet! But also because I wanted to try some glasses with a frameless design.

When I snowboard I use Dragon APX goggles, their design is such that the curved visor and pure size means an almost uninterrupted field of vision. That’s the same for the BBB Fullview glasses.

Unboxing the Fullview glasses was a nice little experience, I wasn’t expecting to get such a solid case with them at this money, perfect for protecting the two additional lenses that come with them. One low light yellow and one clear. There’s no assembly required, they come fitted with darkest lense, but I insisted on playing with them to see how you swap lenses. It’s very easy, the arms just twist away from the lenses to unclip, and the nose piece comes away with a pinch. The glasses feel pretty solid even for a setup that clips directly to the lense, let’s see how this lasts over time though. I went for the gunmetal grey option but the arms are also available in orange, white, black, and navy.

The fit is pretty damn good, this is down to the adjustable design of the nose piece. It’s entirely adjustable allowing you to move the glasses nearer or further away from your face, adjust the height, or even straighten up wonky ears! Something that’s limited on my Oakleys. The grip on your head is light, probably down to the lack of frame, but they don’t feel insecure on your head with the rubber grippers on the arm hold them in place securely.

Having covered a good couple of hundred miles with them now the most noticeable thing about them is the fact they aren’t! They are very light and with the frameless design it’s an uninterrupted view. You almost forget that you are wearing them. Another boost for the frameless design is the lack of contact between forehead/hair/eyebrows and glasses (although this could just be me!) that always causes sweat to run down them. Something I frequently struggled with on my Oakley glasses meaning constantly wiping them and potentially wearing the uv coating from the lense. 

Overall I’m super happy with these BBB glasses. They are comfortable with great visibility, they come in at a great price, and they look fast! What more could you want from a set of specs?

The BBB Fullview glasses come in at £52 for the spec reviewed, but are available with a photochromic lense that auto dims with increase in light. Pretty cool eh! But be prepared to pay an extra £30 odd for it.

Check out the glasses here BBB FULLVIEW.

Cafe Velo Opens!

As if I needed an excuse to get out on the bike! There’s a new Cycle Cafe in Ringwood.

Cafe Velo opened on the 23rd of May and is a most welcome addition to the cycle cafes in the local area. Yes cafes plural, we now have 4 within a ten mile radius of Bournemouth! Spoiled for choice.

Cafe Velo is the passion of owners Andy and Naomi Boyd having moved to the area 6 months ago. Driven by a love for the area and desire to make coffee, cycling, and the cycling community a bigger part of their lives. It was great to chat to them both today, they are a lovely couple.

The cafe itself boasts an immaculate rebuild, a far throw from the American style diner that was in the premises beforehand, featuring pallet wood cladding, pendant lighting, and separate bicycle workshop and storage areas. A big TV shows the latest racing action with the Rapha Nocturne being today’s highlight.

Cafe Velos breakfast menu is a mix of the typical smashed avocado on toast alongside some nice full breakfast and your choice of mix and match ingredients on toast. Mustn’t forget the porridge or granola! For lunch they have baguettes and sandwiches, burgers, crab cakes, and salads. Not to mention an ever changing specials board.

Coffee is a big thing in the cycling world (how else would you get that kind of performance boost whilst keeping it legal!) and they have it in spades at Cafe Velo. It was pre midday so I almost went for a cappuccino but decided flat white at the last moment. I wasn’t going to have a pastry after all……. It was a nice brew showing off their ability and investment in the machinery! Cafe Velo serves Bournemouth based coffee roasters South Coast Roast coffee and I opted for the house blend single fin. After a great chat with the owners I had polished off two cups! and was ready to ride home at tour speeds!

Despite being Cafe Velo’s first month it looks like they have been doing it for ages (except a distinct lack of pedal and tyre marks of the walls and floors!) and there are plans afoot to bring even more to the business. Repairs and accessory sales being one for the near future, with workshop area already set out, and cycle maintenance and education classes. Another benefit Cafe Velo offer is 10% discount for every cycle club member or cyclist in club kit so get out there with your mates.

To see cycling growing to the extent where we have viable business opportunities like Cafe Velo makes me feel good about the world! and helps subdue the despair I feel when I hear that Bournemouth is the most congested town in the UK and one of the most unsafe for cycling. This town needs to wise up and embrace cycling not just as a hobby but as a genuine method of transport, we could be leading the way if we all put our heads together, and cycling hubs like Cafe Velo and Velo Domestique are slowly helping to change things.

Long live the cycle cafe!


Suns out, Guns out!


Just the right hint of Giro pink!

Cafe Velo is located in Star Lane in Ringwood, just behind the Furlong Centre.

For more information go to the website….. CLICK HERE