29 December 2007

New Stopping Power

Saturday, 29 December 2007, I replaced my brake set (Hayes HFX9) with the 2008 Shimano XT brake set.

The new 2008 Shimano XT brake set has the features that I really like:

1. No tool adjustment for the position of brake level for reach adjustment,

2. Simple adjustment for free stroke

I installed them myself, and it was easy. The only dissapoinment (compare to Hayes HFX9) is that the Shimano did not come with flip-flop design for mounting on either side of handlebar.

24 December 2007

Udang Galah (Fresh Water Blue Prawn)

I love udang galah, especially when you fried them. They are delicacy in Malaysia, the taste is exquisite and better than lobster.

During my wedding reception in Teluk Intan, my parents served us the udang galah... yummy.. they were delicious !!!

How to catch them? So, I bought my self a couple of fishing rod and reel sets, and a rod and reel set for my eldest daughter. Suprisingly, the reels were made from Shimano, even the name has XT series added to it.

My first set is Shakespeare Sigma Titanium rod and Shimano Aernos XT 2500. This set will be used to catch the blue udang galah and other fishes (I like the baung fish).

I will try to use this lure bait(from Strike Pro, model JL119, suspended) to get the baung fish.

My second set, especially for reeling up the blue udang galah, consists of the affordable Exori Belida rod and Shimano Slade FB 1000.

Now, catching the famous blue udang galah is another matter.

20 December 2007 : Selamat Hari Raya Aidil Adha (Eid Qurban)

Assalammualaikum or Be peace upon you...

20 December 2007.. its Hari Raya Aidil Adha, and where the Muslims who are fortunate enough to perform the Haj ritual in the holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia.

For those Muslims whose unable to perform their Haj this year, try another year until you succeed. Additionally, a Qurban or animal sacrifice is highly recommended. The calculation is simple, either a goat or 1/7 of a cow.

The meat will be distributed to the needy Muslims (only Muslims) around the world.

Be peace upon you.

11 December 2007

Big Lenses, Small Sensor : The Canon EOS 400D

Photography has always been my other hobby, but it was superseded by various adhoc things that happened in my life. Now, its back... capturing every moments of life (well... almost!)

Lets start with some brief history of my SLR equipment:

Yashica film camera.
Konica 35-70mm F4-5.6 lens.
No external flash.
My school bag was my camera bag.

Canon EOS 50E film camera.
Canon EF 28-80mm F4-5.6 USM II lens.
Canon EF 70-300mm F3.5-6.3 USM II lens.
Still no external flash.
CCS shoulder bag.

Canon EOS 400D digital camera.
Canon EF-S 18-55 F3.5-5.6 lens - comes with the camera, crap lens.
Tamron 17-50mm XR DiII F2.8 lens - replace the crap lens for wide area coverage.
Canon EF 28-135mm F3.5-5.6 Image Stabiliser USM lens - my walk around lens.
Canon 430EX flash - finally.
Tamrac 5E shoulder bag.
Lowepro Topload Zoom 1 bag.
Lowepro Lens Case 2S.
Lowepro Lens Case 2.
Lowepro small belt.

I still can use my old Canon EF 28-80mm F4-5.6 USM II and Canon EF 70-300mm F3.5-6.3 USM II lenses.

More coming... with pictures as well.

02 December 2007

Trail Maintenance 25 November 2007: 4K

We walked along Tony's new and still secret bypass trail along the 4K trail. Short but interesting...

We armoured (with lots of rocks) one of the dangerous 4K descent.

[The hardworking crew]

[The rocky downhill - before]

[The rocky downhill - after (smooth but still rocky)]

[Me.. taking the photo, Asri and Razali]

[Pat, Tony and The Rock]

21 October 2007

Trail Maintenance 21 October 2007: Janie's Addiction

We covered about 1.5km of Janie's Addiction trail today.

Quote from Patawi @ Fakawi Tribe Tribal Talk:

"Cast, in order of appearance: Patawi, Rebecca, Derold, Tee, Umar, Yish, Yian Lei, The Entire Stapo Family, Mus, Phil. Thanks so much to all of you for your help.

It wouldn't have been half as much fun without you, and it would have taken me weeks to do the same amount of work (if I ever managed to do it at all).

Total input:
50 hours of labour, 30 litres of water, 1 liter of chainsaw fuel.

Total output: 1 km of Janie's Addiction buffed to a high sheen. Trimmed, raked, deadfall cleared, roots covered, erosion control added, original route restored. You can't get a better wax job on the beach at Ipanema."

30 September 2007

Interbike 2007

I wish I'm visiting the USA now. The first destination would be riding the trails in either Maob or Sedona, Arizona.

The second destination would be attending the Interbike show. For 2007, it is between 24 September 2007 till 28 September 2007.

16 September 2007

Bukit Kiara Clean Up Day - 16 September 2007

Bukit Kiara Clean Up Day is organised by TRAKS.

More on this later...

14 September 2007

Ramadhan 2007

It fasting month (Ramadhan) again for the Muslim. You cannot consume food or drink, or do extreme sinful things from dawn to dusk.

At the end of the month, there will be a big celebration... we call it Hari Raya Aidil Fitri or in some western country it is known as Eid Mubarak.

As far as mountain biking is concern for me, there not much riding I can do during the day time. I could cycle without food, but definitely not water. It's just demanding on the hydration.

However, this is the month that I actually tried to gain some stamina and lose weight. I will do interval trainings at my local gym at night, two or three times a week. Each session will be divided into 5 periods.

Period 1: Warm up - 10 minutes.
Period 2: Cycling at 1 minutes fast pace, with 1 minute rest. Ten times.
Period 3: Brisk walking - 10 minutes.
Period 4: Cycling at 1 minutes of 9 degrees climbing medium pace, with 1 minute rest. Ten times.
Period 5: Walking - 5 minutes and stretching - 5 minutes.

I usually vary the duration and the pace accordingly to avoid boredom.

31 August 2007

World Champion

The current mountain biking cross-country (XC) world champion is Julien Absalon. He won the title 3 times i.e. in 2004, 2005 and 2006. In the current 2007 season, he is leading the championship points.

I never ride the championship XC courses, and I believe they are mix of steep climbings, technical downhills and fast singletrack sections. But, I would love the world championship (WC) comes to Bukit Kiara.

The existing Carvinal trail that host the yearly KL Mountain Bike Carvinal is about 2.2km per lap. Overlay this onto the typical WC race distance (40km), it will be about eighteen (18) laps !

Could Julien sustains the 18 laps? I would imagine that it would be a great race...

To read more about the 3 times mountain biking cross-country world champion, click here...

23 August 2007

Back Into Riding

Due to great addition into my family, I haven't rode for 4 weekends.

Now, I'm back into riding at Bukit Kiara.
The tarmac climb and the Twin Peaks climb felt so tough. Time to regain my fitness and strength.

See you guys in the trail. Happy riding

19 August 2007

Milestone : Bike wash at Bukit Kiara

A real mountain biking at Bukit Kiara milestone...!!! It is also an ackowledgement by the authority, Kuala Lumpur City Council (DBKL), for the mountain biking activitites in Bukit Kiara, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

[The construction]

[A completed bike wash facility at Bukit Kiara]

[Riders washing their bikes]

Check this page for more detail.

Not even North Shore, Canada has one yet...!

11 August 2007

KL Mountain Bike Carnival 2007

The Kuala Lumpur (KL) Mountain Bike Carnival 2007 was held on 11 and 12 August 2007.

Here are some of the pictures:



22 July 2007

News on Bukit Kiara

This article was taken from The Star:

Friday June 29, 2007



KUALA LUMPUR: The 188.93ha public park, equivalent to the size of about 300 football fields, will be in Bukit Kiara here.

The biggest park in the country will be bounded by Taman Lembah Kiara in Taman Tun Dr Ismail, the KL Golf and Country Club, the Bukit Kiara Equestrian Club and Sri Hartamas, said Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting yesterday.

“The park is our own version of London’s Hyde Park or New York’s Central Park. The park will reflect Malaysia’s identity.

“It will be a sprawling green lung recreational park for city folks to relax in and enjoy Mother Nature. The park will change the image of the city as a concrete jungle,” Ong said.

He said the theme for the park was “design with nature” and not only the natural habitat of the area would be preserved but more trees would be planted too.

“We want to make sure this park retains its identity by adding more greenery to make it more attractive and environment friendly,” he said, adding that the Government would decide on the name of the park later.

He said the park would have various facilities, including jogging and bicycle paths, and space for people to have picnics or camp and courts for various sports like basketball,” he said.

“The public can take part in various activities such as hill climbing and biking, science exploration on flora and fauna, and study tours to the arboretum and herbarium,” he said.

A portion of the park will be reserved for research and development projects.

Ong said the planning and designing of the park would be done by the National Landscape Department under his ministry together with other related agencies including Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL), the Forest Research Institute of Malaysia and the Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute.

He said the Cabinet approved the proposal presented by his ministry together with the Federal Territories Ministry on Wednesday, and his ministry would build and manage the park.

“The Cabinet feels that it should turn Kuala Lumpur and its surrounding areas to be a place for healthy living and a better sustainable environment for the people. We should save the limited green areas now before it is too late,” he said.

He said the park was on land owned by the Government as 146.3ha was under the purview of DBKL while the remaining area belonged to the Information Ministry.

07 July 2007

Trail Maintenance 7 July 2007: Carnival

The Carnival trail is loop trail which starts at the Taman Rekreasi TTDI. It hosts the annual Mountain Bike Carvinal at Bukit Kiara every year.

Today, 07-07-07, the turnout was good. About 10 of volunteers, and as Pat put it in order of appearance... Yish, Joe, Simon, Pat, Stan, Mike, Soon, Shi Fun, Tony, Umar. I was the last to arrive, about an hour late.

Check out the trail guys cool photo below, taken by Joe.

Pat divided us into 2 teams. Me, Simon, Soon and Micheal repaired the switchback on Carnival trail leading to the Rock Garden trail.

[A section on Carnival: Before]

[A section on Carnival: After]

[Another section on Carnival: After]

[Just before the switchback on Carnival before entering the Rock Garden]

25 June 2007

Knee Injury

While riding the 2K trail in Bukit Kiara on the morning of 23 June 2007, I tried to clear a log, about a foot in height, but somehow my pedal and rear tyre stuck. I nearly endo. My right knee hit the handlebar.

I was not that painful, but I felt like the knee cap was dislocated. After a few second, I checked my right knee visually... no blood, no funny looking knee cap around. Phew.. lucky me. It didn't hurt at all, but I was jittered.

I purposely didn't go to the hash to make sure the knee was OK.

However, come Sunday night, my right knee felt a bit of pain. Time to check-up...

03 June 2007

Serendah Uphill Bash

The May 2007 was at Serendah. Most of the trails were old logging trails with not much of forest canopy.

It was hot and look at the GPS evelation... nearly 6 kms of pure climbing. That was for the scenic ride. The long ride was even worse, with 12 to 14 kms of climbings. The rewards were fast and open downhills, and prestine & cooling waterfalls. Torture but rewarding...

13 May 2007

Trail Maintenance 13 May 2007: 4K

4K trail connects the Bukit Kiara crossroad to the KLGCC water tank. If you start from the crossroad, it has a bit of log and jumps ala North Shore, lots of technical downhills, a few other wooden structures and typical Kiara style cross country riding.

The earlier part of 4K is called Rubbish (ala North Shore riding style for the steel-hearted riders), and of course it also has parallel trail.
[Someone correct me if I'm wrong...]

The works that was done is at the technical downhill adjoining of Rubbish and normal 4K.
So, here you're...

[View from the top]

[View from the bottom]

Today orchestra team:
> Pat (Conductor)
> Simon
> Me
> Cougar

06 May 2007

Faulty Fox

My rear shock (Fox Float RP3) for my beloved KHS XC904R failed me on Labour Day (1st May 2007). It doesn't hold the air anymore.

It is now at the LBS for repair. There goes my riding time on such excellent bike.

Luckily, I have another bike, the KHS XC604, to keep my adrenalin flow.

[My bike hanging at the LBS]

[Close up view]

29 April 2007

Rolling weight

I upgraded my wheelset, from 1988 grams to 1696 grams, and yeapp.. I sound like weight weenies. Mathematically, that is a weight saving of 14.7% or more than half a pound.

The new wheelset consist of:
Mavic XC717 silver rims
DT Swiss Competition double butted spokes
Brass nipples
A set of Ringle Flea hubs

It might not be as light as the XC racer wheelset, but I chose durable components like more durable nipples and spokes. I could have gone to alloy nipples and DT Swiss Revolution spokes to save another 80 gms, but I saw to many of those failed.

I had two rides with the new wheelset. Both rides were on wet and muddy trails. It performed far better than I expected. Climbing was definitely easier now. Cornering felt so much better. A downhill rolling felt like butter.
However, I think I need to test them on dry trails to see its true potential.

Even the lightness can be felt when fitting the bike onto the car rack. That must be good.