Sunday, January 13, 2019

The Sonder Signal Ti - Building a Dream Machine.

The Motel du Mugling is an oasis of calm on the bustling Kathmandu-Pokhara Highway. I called in and ate an unplanned lunch with my friend Sagar, the manager. It was unplanned because I had already eaten breakfast there a few hours previously; inbetween times I had made a minor navigational error and cycled 26 or so kilometres in the wrong direction before retracing my steps to begin all over again. My initial 90km trundle to Pokhara was now to be a slightly more hectic race against daylight.
I'd arrived in Kathmandu a few days prior to this and spent my time pleasantly hanging out in the - now traffic-free - tourist hub of Thamel, catching up with old friends, drinking coffee, and riding familiar trails around the valley rim.
Familiar trails with familiar friends on an unfamiliar bike.
I'd been given a great opportunity to ride the final prototype of the new Sonder Bikes Signal Ti 29" Hardtail with the explicit purpose of capturing some high mountain images of the bike in its natural environment (see my initial review here).

I had absolute no intention of building a new hardtail this year, a new full-susser was what I really wanted, but I once I'd stepped across the Signal Ti there was no turning back - I had to have this bike in my arsenal.

So here it is:

Having been sidelined by my shoulder operation over the winter I had a lot of time on my hands. I spent much of this time online scouring the winter sales for high-end bargains, in preparation for a new bike build. I had a few parts to transfer over from my old bike and the rest were secured with some great discounts, saving me a lot of money and allowing me to build a very high spec bike.
I can't begin to tell you how good this bike is on the trails.

The amazing Signal Ti frameset.

Rockshox Pike RCT3 Boost fork - 130mm, and Rockshox Reverb 100mm Stealth Dropper.

Hope Crank fitted with a Superstar Components Edge stainless Steel Modular Chainring.
Custom built wheels from Moonglu, Maxxis Ardent 2.4 tyres (tubeless), Shimano XT 11-42 rear mech, Shimano Icetech 180/203mm rotors. Titanium rotor bolts. Mowa valve caps. 

Fizik Gobi M1 carbon saddle. KMC 11spd chain. Hope BB30 and fittings.

Shimano XTR trail brakes, shifter, and rear mech.

Renthal Carbon Fatbar 780mm

ODI Ruffian grips.

NS Bikes 45mm Oil Slick Stem.

DMR Vault Lacon Signature Oil Slick pedals

If you're in the market for a new hardtail then take a long hard look at this bike. Sonder offer it as frame-only or in a range of builds from £1899 through to an eye-watering dream machine of their own at £4000. It really is a very special bike.

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Thank you for looking, see you soon.
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Consume less, live more. Plant more trees.

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