YAB: Yet Another Bike: 2010 Stumpjumper Expert FSR 29er

Picked this one up recently. Having sold my Xizang, I was itching for something new and wanted to try out the 29er thing. Well, this was what I found. I figured that I would get a much better feel/value for a 29er by buying a used bike versus paying the local dealer $100/day for a demo bike. I’m pretty certain I will be able to sell it for what I paid for it should I decide the platform isn’t for me.




In case you’re wondering, this is a size Large. Normally I’d get a Medium, but this is what craigslist had that day, and since I’m about 5’ 11" (“tweener sized”), I’m borderline Large anyway.

Fit seems mostly unnoticeable to me. The cockpit is nearly identical to my Trek dually. I’ve only taken it on one ride so far and came away mostly underwhelmed. I was expecting night and day differences from what I’ve heard and read about the 29er experience. I had a buddy ride my Trek, so I swapped back and forth throughout the ride, so I could get a good feel of the differences between the two.

My first impression was that the trek seemed sooo much lighter and “flickable”. The Trek is under 25lbs with pedals, and the Stumpy is about 29lbs with pedals. The Trek’s smaller size also seemed to make it feel more maneuverable on the trail.

I nearly wiped out a couple of times on the 29er. Something that never happens on my Trek. I’m sure it will take some more rides to get used to handling the bike, so I’m not really going to base my opinions on one ride so far. Another thing I noticed is that I felt like I bottomed out harshly a coupe times. I also hit my crank arms on some rocks. Both of these things have never happened to me on my trek (That I actually noticed). The Stumpy also seems to make A LOT of noise from the chain rattling around while descending. I’ll have to look into that.

One thing I really liked, though, was the Brain shock. It was sort of like having the ProPedal lever ON automatically when I needed it, and OFF when I didn’t.

This Stumpy Expert was stock except for a nice upgrade to the wheelset: black Chris King ISO hubs laced to Stans 355 29er rims, set up tubeless with S-Works rubber. This is also my first bike with a 15QR fork, so I had to order a Thule 15QR axle adapter for my roof rack. Personally, I found the 15QR system to be a little clumsy as far as getting the wheel on and off and the bike onto my rack. I also can’t tell how much stiffer it makes the front end compared to a regular 9mm QR fork/wheel.

I’ve also never had a bike with SRAM on it. First impression is it feels clunky and overbuilt compared to the XTR stuff I am used to. Shifting was fine, but noisier and with a heavier feel to the triggers. The Avid Elixer brakes worked fine, but also seemed overbuilt compared to the XTR on my Trek.

I had some parts sitting around so I swapped in:

  • XTR m970 crankset
  • Specialized XC White lock on grips
  • Syncros FL saddle
If I start to like the 29er after a few more rides, I may swap over my XTR brakes and drivetrain from the Trek and see if that really makes me a convert.
Stay tuned…

Fixing the GPS signal “fix” on LiquidSmooth ROMs for Galaxy Nexus

If you’re running LiquidSmooth on your GNex and it is constantly “Searching for GPS” when using the built in Google Maps or Navigation apps, something is hosed! Flashing this patch fixed my issues instantly, and has remained fix up to the latest LiquidSmooth 1.5MR1 update:

LiquidSmooth Galaxy Nexus GPS patch

I’m anxiously awaiting the new LiquidSmooth Jellybean 4.1.1 update to come out! I tried Jellybean the day it was announced, and it was noticeably smoother (like “butter” baby!). But it was missing all of the customizations I had gotten used to in LiquidSmooth, including the all-important [to me] Profiles Settings.

LiquidSmooth Jellybean 4.1.1 Beta, plus restoring apps with Titanium Backup

Update 08/06/12: For the past few days I’ve been trying out the Beta 2 build of the Liquid Jellybean 4.1.1 rom. It works and is complete, for the most part. Some things (for me) are broken:

  • Voice Dialer quits when accessed by my Bluetooth headset
  • GPS wouldn’t lock (fixed with GPS patcher above)

This was also the first time I used titanium Backup to restore my apps and settings. After a few attempts, I think I’ve figured out how to do a successful restore. The main issue I found was restoring Apex launcher (either from its own saved backups or through Titanium Backup). Every time I restored it, my Camera and Gallery apps broke. They both said “App isn’t installed” when I tapped them.

To fix this, all you have to do is remove the apps from your homescreen, then re-add them from your Apps drawer. Presto, they both work now and both have the correct icons (previously they had generic, green Android icons).

To restore apps with Titanium Backup, just select the schedule to “Restore Missing Apps with Data”. Then, deselect the apps you don’t want restored. Another option is to restore all system data along with it, but I chose not to do this option. Maybe next time I’ll try it.

A new ROM with Profiles! AndroidME CM10 4.1.1

Found a new ROM today, that also has the Profiles Settings app. It’s called AndroidME and is available here.

Turns out, the Profiles setting I require was developed by the team at Cyanogenmod, but released as open source to the Google AOSP (Android Open Source Project). That basically means that Google can use it in a future build if they like it enough, and so can other ROM modders if they choose to build off the AOSP source and include it in their ROMs.

AndroidME CM10 is based off the latest Cyanogenmod 10 build, and therefore contains the Profiles settings built in. While CM10 is still in development, it seems pretty stable so far. The GPS also didn’t lock, but the above flash fixed it yet again. Bluetooth voice Dialing also works now, which is great for driving! I’ll be sure to report back with my next ROM of the day…

Android Bugs: Gmail app stuck on “sending” forever

I recently discovered that the Gmaill app on my ICS Galaxy Nexus wasn’t actually syncing properly. When I would mark an email as archived, it wouldn’t reflect in my desktop browser, or worse, if I sent an email from my Android Gmail app, it would get stuck on “sending” forever, and never actually send the message. Rebooting wouldn’t fix this either.

Basically what happened is Gmail app is messed up and the only way to fix this is to delete the app data associated with the program. This will essentially reset the app so it gets a fresh sync again. Note: You will lose any messages stuck in “sending” mode. You will also have to add back any account specific customizations like label-specific notifications and custom ringtones for the app.

Go to System Settings > Apps > select the ALL tab > locate Gmail and select it > click the Clear Data button. Reboot for good measure. Fixed.

Android Bugs: Gallery app doesn’t show correct image when selecting thumbnail image

Found an annoying issue with the Gallery thumbnails on my Nexus. Selecting a thumbnail in the Gallery app wouldn’t display the right image. It seemed like it was 4 or 5 images “off”. This behavior was also apparent when selecting things like Wallpapers from the Gallery.

The fix was to delete/rebuild the thumbnail cache for the Gallery. Go into Astro file manager or similar and delete the cache files in /Android/data/com.google.android.gallery3d/cache/imgcache (3 of them), and reboot the device. Next time you view your Gallery, you will see the thumbnail images being regenerated.

Part 3: Making Android more like a Blackberry (adding Blackberry sounds and Autotext)

And for my 3rd installment on Making Android like a Blackberry, I’ll share with you some tweaks I’ve discovered in the past month or so to make my Galaxy Nexus behave more like the Blackberry I was used to.


Blackberry users should know what this is. It’s a way to add typing shortcuts for commonly used words or phrases. For example, on a Blackberry you can add shortcuts to your custom dictionary so they can quickly be recalled later by typing just a few characters.

For example, you can set up something like ‘lmk’ and when you type those characters followed by a space, it will automatically input “let me know”. I used this for things like my signature, my phone number, my address, etc. Very handy!

Turns out, there is an app for that in the Android Market. It’s aptly named “Auto Text”. The free version is good for up to 10 shortcuts, which is just about what I need. The paid version is a bit pricey at $9.95, but is unlimited. I’ve been using it for a few days now and it seems to work pretty well. Not exactly like a Blackberry, but totally acceptable. The only issue (that hasn’t become an issue yet), is that I think it replaces the default ICS keyboard with its own. The default ICS keyboard supposedly has many improvements over the old 2.3.x keyboard. And from my experience of trying several 3rd party market keyboards, it’s the best. Auto Text appears to be modelled on the older 2.3.x (gingerbread) keyboard, but so far my typing seems to be as accurate as it was with the default ICS keyboard. I’ll be keeping a close eye on this for accuracy the more I use it.

I did find another keyboard in the Market that has the Autotext feature, but haven’t used it just yet. It’s called Smart Keyboard Pro. If Auto Text fails me, I’m going to try this one next.

Blackberry Sounds

IMO, the notification sounds on Android suck. If you miss your Blackberry sounds, there’s no reason you can’t have them on your Android device, too! just download the sounds and copy them to your Ringtones folder of your /sdcard. You will then be able to select them in whatever app you want:

Download Blackberry Sounds

Part 2: Making Android more like a Blackberry

Following up to my oh-so popular post about making Android more like a Blackberry, I’ve found a way to create notification Profiles that do what I want.

After fiddling for about a week (seriously), with probably 20 apps and runaround forum threads, this seemingly basic functionality couldn’t be done in Android ICS.

To recap, what I wanted was:

  • The ability to disable all notifications at “Night”, except for the phone ringer and notifications for incoming email to one email address that I use to alert me of server-type mishaps.

No matter what app I tried, I wasn’t able to find a way to do this. Many of the apps out there can whitelist contacts, but many required that they be from a phone number and not an email address. I even tried an SMS alert from my monitoring service, but that app just plain didn’t work at all.

The solution? Flash the ROM of my ICS Galaxy nexus to the latest nightly build for Cyanogenmod 9.

Cyanogenmod 9 (and earlier versions), has a built-in setting aptly named “Profiles”. This feature allows you to control notifications for various situations, such as “Work” or “Car” or “Night”. Additionally, you can control the notifications for specific apps. Default apps include Gmail and Email.

What I did was set up all of my email accounts in the Gmail app, and the server-alert account in the Email app using Exchange (per my related post). Once this was set up, I could then use Profiles to override the notifications for the Gmail app when set to the “Night” profile, and subsequently pump up the volume for the Email app and its server-alert email address.

Seems so simple, right? I think the problem I had in finding an app to do this was that Google apparently changed the way apps can be accessed by other programs, basically disallowing the type of control I wanted. Flashing a different ROM removed this restriction.

Anyway, I’ve been using the mod for a few days now and it’s been very stable. It also has a lot of nice and seemingly obvious tweaks to the stock ICS interface that I really think enhances the usability of the OS. Another nice touch is that the changes are relatively transparent; there’s no bloatware or gratuitous interface skinning here. It still looks like stock ICS, but with some welcome tweaks.

Let me try and sum up how to Flash this ROM in my own words:

  1. Install the Galaxy Nexus Toolkit (This allows you to root, unlock, install Clockworkmod recovery, everything, in one step)
  2. Install ROMManager from the Google Play store
  3. Assuming you successfully installed the Toolkit, you can now download the latest CM9 build and also the Google Apps files to your PC (I don’t know if you can do all of this on a Mac, but luckily my Mac has Bootcamp and Win7 on it; it won’t work with Fusion or Parallels)
  4. Create a directory (folder) on your GNex called “cm9”, and copy the above two files in .zip form to it. (I like to keep the ROM files in one place rather than loose on the root level /sdcard)
  5. Launch ROMManager and select Reboot into Recovery (this will reboot into Clockworkmod recovery)
  6. Continue from Step 6 in the article above

Note: This will wipe your device of all user data, but not photos or media type stuff. Just your apps and your account setups like Gmail, etc. Once you are up and running again, you can just restore most of this stuff easily once you sign into your Google account again.

Update: Updating to a new build on CM9 is also easy:

  1. Download the latest nightly build from Cyanogenmod.
  2. Once downloaded, launch ROM Manager, (optional: select Backup Current ROM" if you want to be safe and have a restore point), then select “Install ROM from SD card”. “Wipe Dalvik cache” is selected by default. Proceed.
  3. When your Nexus reboots into CWM Recovery, use the volume buttons to select “install zip from sdcard” (press Power button to select), then navigate to your /Downloads directory to select the new ROM build.
  4. After installation, reboot the device and allow Android to finish updating itself.
  5. Done!

YAR (Yet Another ROM): LiquidSmooth

I found another ROM that also has the Profiles settings. It’s called LiquidSmooth (I think they may have just ripped it off from CM and integrated it into their own ROM under CM open source license). I tried it for a couple days, but went back to CM9 because of one issue: I couldn’t get my notifications to remain persistent in my status bar until dismissed. For example, an email is received, and it dings me and shows me a little email icon in the status bar. It remains there until I slide down my notification and dismiss it. For some reason, in Liquid Smooth the icon showed up but went away on it’s own after about a second or two. It remains in the notifications panel, but not visible in the status bar, so basically you don’t really know if there is an email by glancing at the status bar area. It’s probably a setting somewhere that I missed, but I didn’t want to deal with it.

On the plus side, Liquid Smooth fixed two bugs I have been experiencing with CM9: 1) YouTube does not launch at all and 2) Using DoubleTwist in CM9 results in really bad wifi performance. I’ve since uninstalled DoubleTwist and I don’t use YT anyway, so no big deal there.

Notification Fix: A helpful tip fixed my notification icon issue with LiquidSmooth. At some point I must have changed the notification color to Black, making it essentially invisible. To fix this, in the main section of Liquid Control under Statusbar: select General. Scroll all the way down to the bottom selection (Notification Color). Open that up and change the color to #fff (white). Now just back out and all your notifications should stay  "visible" until you dismiss or check them.

Hence, I am back to running Liquid Smooth for now. It seems to be generally more compatible with various apps. For example, Youtube and Doubletwist work fine for me. Another thing is Bluetooth Audio to my car stereo works, but with CM9 it doesn’t. I do find it faster than CM9 as well, supposedly one of the selling points of this ROM.

Vintage/Retro/Classic! RockShox Judy XC and SL Replacement Fork decals for sale

2022 Update! Decals are available!

New and Improved version! No more cutting of Upper decals! Just peel and stick!

New! 1996 “script” Judy version now available!

I sell these on eBay, but I’ll cut them out and sell directly and give you a little discount if you buy from me direct for $11.00 USD (you save $1.00!)

Apparently SRAM thinks my decals are TOO GOOD! They had my listings removed on eBay after almost 10yrs(!) of selling these to support the VRC crowd!

2021 Update! Decals are available!

Get them while they last. I won’t be making any more once my current run is finished. When they’re gone, they’re gone!

Shipping is FREE in USA (2-3 bus. day delivery). $1.25 Int’l First Class Mail (allow 1-2 week delivery time)

Please specify the version you are ordering:

image “XC”

image “SL”

image SL with script “Judy” 1996


Looking for Judy FSX decals? You can get them here!

Check out my eBay feedback for these decals! (click for larger version)

Description from my [now removed] eBay auction:

Rock Shox Judy SL and XC fork decals! NEW!
You are looking at a set of incredibly high-quality reproduction decals for your vintage Rock Shox Judy forks!
Like you, I had a vintage bike to restore, and the original decals on my Judy forks were toast! I wasn’t happy. It was the one thing that kept my bike from being “perfect” again.
So I took it upon myself to rebuild, recreate, redesign, the original Rock Shox Judy decals. I’m a professional graphic designer, so I knew I could do it. After many, many hours of carefully measuring the original decals, scanning, fixing and tweaking, here is the final result. It’s perfect. Even more perfect than the original decals ever were. They are the exact size of the originals. The perfect finishing touch.
Bring your tired, beaten forks back to life!
The decals are printed using the highest quality silk-screening techniques. Silkscreen printing is an incredibly high-end method with which to print stickers. As far as sticker printing goes, silkscreen is simply the best the way to produce an extremely high caliber, high quality sticker. Once you begin to understand the silkscreen process and see the results of the printing medium, you will quickly realize that in terms of quality, there is no contest.
Silkscreen printing is essentially a stenciling technique, where a design is imposed on a screen of silk or other fine mesh, with blank areas coated with an impermeable emulsion. Ink is forced through the mesh with a squeegee onto the printing surface, which in our case is an adhesive backed vinyl. The result is an extremely thick, weatherproof, waterproof sticker with an effective outdoor capability that is measured by years. (The outdoor capability of a digitally printed sticker of the same design is measured by weeks.)
These decals are clear, just like the originals.

The highest quality. Period.

  • Thick Ink. At least 2-3 times thicker than other silkscreen printers and 10x-20x thicker than digitally printed stickers.
  • 100% UV Protection… Multiple Passes. Each full-color sticker is silkscreened onto a thick vinyl surface with 4 thick coats of ink, and 3 thick coats of clear gloss with 100% UV protection.
  • Weather proof and waterproof. Effective outdoor capability is 2000-3000% higher than Digital/Flexo materials.
  • Extreme durability. Minimum 3-5 year effective capability against any weather. Actual lifetime should be substantially higher since you aren’t riding everyday! Extremely durable in extreme conditions (like mountain biking!). Silkscreen stickers are the only way to go if you are looking for durability.

Each set includes (enough to restore one (1) fork):

  • Two (2), separate Rock Shox Judy main decals (fork uppers)
  • One pair of your choice: “XC”, “SL”, or “SL with Judy script” lower decals.

Note: Before applying decals, be sure the fork leg is absolutely clean of any adhesive or cleaning residues/oils.

Application tips:
  • Completely remove any adhesive residue with WD-40 or similar
  • Use isopropyl alcohol or other degreaser to completely remove any WD-40 residue
  • Peel and stick! Use the blunt edge of your fingernail to rub over the full decal to ensure full adhesion
Free Shipping in USA! $1.25 for International shipping by First Class International letter.
Images below are ACTUAL DECALS applied to forks!

’09 Trek Fuel EX 9.8

Update: Sold on 05/09/13.



After a bit of a break from biking, I decided to get back into it and bought my first “modern” bike. An ‘06 Specialized Epic, which turned out to be an awesome ride coming from a hardtail-only history. My next upgrade path was to something with a bit more travel and this is what I ended up with: an ’09 Trek Fule EX 9.8 with a carbon main triangle no less.

This is the bike I ride all the time. The others are really just wall hangers that i can’t seem to bring myself to part with, or what I ride if I loan this bike to a friend to ride.

All parts have been swapped from stock except for the headset, bottom bracket, and rear shock! I’m a tinkerer…

Just under 25lbs with pedals.


  • Fox Talas 150 RLC with tapered steerer; quick adjust from 110-130-150mm travel on the fly.
  • Stans Olympic wheelset to DT Swiss/Hugi 240s hubset
  • Specialized S-Works The Captain front and rear; tubeless with Stans sealant
  • XTR m960 crankset (I love the look of this crank)
  • XTR m970 shifters, levers, brakes, rear derailleur
  • Thompson setback post
  • Syncros FL saddle (pretty…)
  • Ritchey SuperLogic carbon low-riser bar
  • Ritchey WCS carbon stem 110mm and Ritchey True Grips
  • Ritchey v4 pedals
  • KMC X9 SL Gold chain (Bling!)
  • Can you tell who my favorite component manufacturer is yet?

2004 (05?) Omega Alchemy Ti 55cm

photo S1050096_zps0262e35e.jpg photo S1050094_zps63cae009.jpg photo S1050095_zps9cb4a514.jpg

To be honest, I never really ride this bike. Road riding is BORING. There, I said it. So…while I can still do it, I’m MTB all the way. I’m basically keeping this bike for my future golden years, since it looks like everyone who rides in my town is a roadie and like 80+…

Just under 17lbs with pedals, the Omega Alchemy is a Bri’ish made bike. The company is now defunct, but I believe reborn under another name (Enigma). When I decided I wanted a road bike (for the days I couldn’t manage a trail ride), I wasn’t really sure what to get. At first I looked at some carbon big brand bikes like the Specialized Tarmac and whatnot, but came across a listing online for this one. What caught my eye was that it was made of Ti and had brand new Dura Ace C24 carbon clinchers on it.

I’m not really an experienced road biker, so the handling feels skittish to me. I think that’s just how road bikes feel, though; they are just too light and tight so they feel every bump and crack.

Upgrades since I bought it:

  • Ultegra 6700 brifters and brakes
  • Syncros Ti post
  • KCNC seat clamp in red anno
  • Columbus Super Muscle full carbon fork to match the rear wishbone. Superlight and looks much nicer than the 3T bladed fork it came with when i bought it.

1997 GT Xizang Titanium (Sold!)



Yikes(!). What can be said about one of the winningest, most iconic mountain bikes of all time? Yes, the GT Xizang is perhaps one of the most sought after bikes on the VRC scene…and I have one! In the 16" size no less (18" C-T), which is the perfect size “medium” and even harder to find. This one’s from ‘97, but with ’94 NOS decals applied. The little tab on the back of the seattube is for running canti-type brakes; an extra piece that served as a bolt-on canti hanger could be fitted there to act as the cable stop. Not sure why they kept the tab though, as v-brakes were by far the way to go by ’97.

As she sits: 20.6lbs.


  • ’08 SID Race. Wow, what an upgrade over the original ’98 blue SID, with its 32mm stanchions. 80mm travel. The v-brake model is a bit hard to find and I think they stopped making it in ’09. You can still buy v-brake lowers on eBay for about $160 if you’re desperate.
  • XTR m970 levers and shifters; XTR m952 rear
  • Race Face (RIP) Deus XC crankset
  • Mavic 517s to Hugi hubset (super lightweight; from an ’03 S-Works Epic)
  • Specialized carbon flat bar, Ritchey WCS bar ends/stem/post, Selle SLR saddle
  • Continental Speed King 2.1 black chili tires

Update: Sold(!) on fleaBay on 07/20/12 for $1999.99. Some changes to the final auction build were:

  • ’98 SID Blue 63mm fork
  • Styff Carbon flat bar
  • Dura Ace 9spd barcon shifters mounted to Paul Components Thumbies
  • XTR m952 wheelset to Mavic 517 black rims and Wheelsmith double-butted spokes
  • XTR m950 levers
  • Final weight was actually less, at only 19.90lbs. Not bad.
  • Sold it because, well, I never rode it and I am itching for something new…I think I got a good price, but eBay and PayPal gouged me at about 13.5%! Ouch…
Update 2: Bah! I found another 16" frame and decided it was a good deal so I bought it! This one is a ’93. I’m currently swapping over some parts from the Bonty to get it running so I can take it for a ride. You know, to give it another chance…yeah.