After writing about Airborne’s Interbike sale not too long ago (here) a friend of mine decided that she wanted to get back into cycling. What great timing on her part! With the sale price, a bike in a box showed up at her place today for the amazing price of $250! Since I am the resident bike geek in the workplace, I picked up the box on my way home from work to put together the Sabre for her, and thought I would post the build process. I am still not so sure I would call this a build, it was that easy!
The Sabre was packed amazingly well. Every important part was covered, and most if not all of the bike was tied together in one unit. There was a small accessories box that was loose in the larger bike box, that held the manual, reflectors, and two cable ferrules. This box had a small hole that had developed in transit, but nothing seemed to be missing. That would be my only complaint in the shipping category.
Once out of the box, the seat post was installed to place the bike on the rack, and I spent the majority of the build time taking off the packing material. All of the tubes of the bike were wrapped and taped, the fork was bubble-wrapped and taped, the bars were wrapped and taped; do you see a pattern yet? It was packed very well, with nothing really forgotten about. Everything went together as smoothly as possible.
One non-issue, that potentially could be an issue(Maybe?) is that the stem is installed backwards. This enables the fork to be installed during the shipping process, as the stem in the reverse position makes the bike easier to pack. This only takes an allen wrench to loosen two bolts, but I could see some folks just turning the stem around, while attached, and ending up with a fork in the wrong position. I think it would be very obvious, but some might not. I feel it should be noted though…
After the stem was spun around, I mounted the handlebars, installed the front wheel, and inflated the tires to the proper level. While the bike was still on the stand, I tested out the shifting and braking, and everything was as it should be, so pedals were installed and it was time for a test ride.
The Sabre reminded me of my first “serious” mountain bike, only the Sabre costs around $200 less! Just around 15 minutes speeding around the neighborhood, mostly due to this bike not being my size. Anyway though, in my short time with it, I walked away impressed. The shifting was spot on. The Shimano 7 speed shifters, matched to Shimano derailleurs front and back worked like a charm. I was expecting to spend most of the evening fine tuning the shifting, and I did not even have to adjust it. Flawless! The Tektro Novela disc brakes also surprised me, being a great, easy, virtually set-up free disc brake. The fork did not impress me as much as the other items, but I am used to riding a rigid steel bike, so I would probably not be the best to judge the suspension. Top all of that off with a WTB saddle, and that is a smoking deal for your first mountain bike. Well done Airborne!
If you are on the fence about buying an Airborne due to putting it together yourself, don’t be. This ended up being maybe a 30 minute investment, with most of my time removing packaging. If you are interested in this deal, you need to move fast since it is over on the 23rd. Head over to Airborne’s site here to start your adventure!
Not too long ago, I stumbled upon Airborne Bicycles. They are a relatively new bicycle company based out of nearby Dayton Ohio, that is pumping out quality bicycles at very reasonable prices. How they do it, I am not sure, but for certain I am seriously considering adding one to my current stable. Here are a few that strike my fancy:
This bicycle makes me happy. Big wheels from WTB. Front suspension in the form of a Rockshox Reba. Components from SRAM in the 2×10 variety. Elixir hydraulic disc brakes. All together for just $1149.95! That is pretty amazing. I love 29ers, having owned a couple different versions, and their MSRP was definitely higher. Great price on a great bike, which many different magazines are giving great reviews!
This is another bike that really intrigues me. I have been intrigued by a dual suspension for quite some time, but their prices have always been too steep for me. Plus, after my last MTB being a rigid steel single speed, that really made me start thinking about a dually. Anyway, parts: Rockshox front and rear suspension, SRAM X7 and X9 drive train and Tektro hydraulic discs. Nice parts, all for $699.95! This is the best deal of the bunch in my opinion. Try to find an equally spec’d dual suspension mountain bike for a similar price. I don’t think it can be done. Bravo Airborne!
Another great bike of a different variety. A well equipped disc only cyclocross bike. Their site says limited quantity, and after seeing this one I can see why. Great looking bike, makes me want to start ‘cross racing. Great package at $999.95!
One thing that might be a deal breaker for some with this company is that they are mostly mail order. Myself, I do not find this to be an issue. I still support my local bike shop by buying the majority of my parts and having things fixed there as well. This type of bicycle sales is great for the consumer, giving us lots of options, which in this case are very affordable. These low prices with a little bit of maintenance knowledge will make for a very enjoyable ride.
These three are just half of the Airborne line up, just the ones that I really, really enjoy. Hopefully this brand sticks around for a while, and from the looks of the reviews, I would imagine so. It is nice to see a somewhat local company do well in the cycling business. Rock on Airborne…
All pictures from Airborne’s website.