Archive for May, 2009
This picture comes from Mark T and are the first pictures I have seen of a District with anything other than OEM parts on it. Mark added some cut down straight bars and toe clips with leather straps. Personally I think it looks brilliant!
Thanks Mark! Send more pics!
Anyone else changed things up on the District?
I just realized that I had never posted this picture I got a while ago. It comes from Ronald S of Holland who had his district way back on the 29th of April.
Here is another great review with some equally stunning photo’s from the UK!
Back in early December 2008, the winter off road commute was taking its toll on both the bike and me. I was in the market for a low maintenance, fun commuter. Not sure where I first saw a details of the District but thought – that’s got to be a fun bike.
A deposit went down on the District and every week I was hoping that it would be just another few days, I regularly visited trekdistrict.com to see if there was any news.
After waiting several months and only having a few pictures to look at, I was unsure what my initial reaction would be when finally seeing it for real. I arrived on foot at the bike shop with the intention to cycle it home. I waited eagerly as they brought it out from the workshop – the first thoughts were wow! The styling, lived up to my expectations, the build quality was stunning. It was “for real” and looked so much better in real life.
After a chat with the friendly guys at http://www.evocycles.co.uk/ it was now time to get on and ride it. At this point I felt nervous. Having not owned a road bike for 20+ years, my focus has been on long distance cross country riding. The fit didn’t feel too dissimilar to my Trek EX-8, the main thing that crossed my mind was how small and light the bike felt underneath me. In contrast to a chunky MTB, it felt fragile. I pulled away slowly and started to wind it up. The gearing felt natural and my worries about power transfer quickly faded. A strong tail wind was in my favour, before I knew it I had covered nearly 2 miles. The build felt robust with the only noise being traced to a loose inner tube valve nut – this bike is seriously silent. After a quick stop, and with a long flat stretch ahead it was time to see how fast I could go. Acceleration is effortless, the GPS logs showed that 24.8Mph was reached. At this speed, the legs spin like crazy and my fingers were twitching to down shift. Would be interested to hear what others feel about the gearing, would like to have gone faster but perhaps I just need to stick to a sensible speed and enjoy the cruise?
The next test was to see what its like at hills. Nothing to steep, but the ones I tried were fine. A few times I had to get out of the saddle to keep the spin up, the bike is incredibly light and seems to fly.
A few observations, the pivots on the brake levers have orange paint which has started to flake off – not fussed as feel that they looks better without. The weld at top of seat stay looks rushed and untidy. One side of the pedals seem convex whereas the other side is flat, I prefer using SPD’s so will fit these soon. The black spokes are a nice touch. Its amazing how much attention it gets, I think it’s a bike that people either love or hate – two days of ownership and I love it. Happy riding
Thanks Nigel! Lots more pictures after the jump…
One of our loyal readers Sander van der Vegte of http://www.coin-op.nl/ just got his Trek District last week. It’s currently the only District in Holland. He was kind enough to take some great pictures and write up his initial thoughts. If you are one of the lucky to own a District, drop us a line and share some photo’s, we’ll post them up for everyone to see. See Sanders full review below.
If there were something like drive-by burglaries, this would be the tool of choice.
The Trek District is quiet. You hear nothing but the tires or the hard-to-notice squeak of the belt when you push down hard. It’s a lovely experience, especially in parks and woods. I bought this bike at a Trek dealer called Top Bikes in The Hague, the Netherlands. Amongst many other bike stores they were one of the few that listed the District. I made reservations approximately three months upfront not knowing about the delays. When it finally arrived they informed me that only four (or maybe five) Districts were made, and only one was shipped to Holland. I consider myself very lucky.
This is my first Trek bike. I’m not an expert in biking, but in this country everyone rides bikes. It’s by far the best way to get around town (and I don’t even have a drivers license as result). This picture gives you a good idea of how common biking is here:
I’ve owned many bikes. Some were stolen, some rusted away. But it wasn’t until a few years ago before I bought my first new bike. Eventually, I got fed up with having grease all over the place and looking like a clown stuffing my pants in my sock. The belt drive of the District is, together with its stunning looks, the reason why I wanted to have one. The bike doesn’t make you worry about things like grease or gears. Just get on and drive away. A lazy-men’s bike when it comes down to those things. And I find that positive. Before I left the store I asked if they could flip the stem. Apparently the stem is mounted upwards by factory default. With such a minimalistic design something trivial as a stem can change the look of the bike entirely. The mechanic flipped it for me without a problem.
My first trip was from The Hague to Rotterdam, which is (including some sight seeing) roughly 30 kilometers or 18.5 miles. The rock-hard tires in combination with brick roads made for an uncomfortable ride at first, but as soon as I hit tarmac all my worries were gone. The word ‘smooth’ couldn’t even cover it. The gear ratio is perfect, as is the grip on the pedals. The belt drive feels like a strong piece of fabric that doesn’t stretch. It’s hard to describe the difference between the belt and a normal chain, but you can certainly feel it. There is absolutely no slippage or jerky moves to be found. It really makes you wonder why this system hasn’t been applied to all bikes already.
There is a downside to the quiet ride though. For instance, with every odd sound the bike produces I find myself bending towards the frame listening carefully to learn what causes it, and it makes a bike bell a necessity which lessens the looks of this clean machine. I can’t recall how many times I had to brake or steer clear from unexpected bikers and pedestrians that simply didn’t hear me coming. The good looks of the bike is something we can all agree on. The minute the bike was outside the store it received its first bystander’s comment of approval. Kids shouting “cool bike!”, grown ups turning heads and elderly people stopping for a moment to study it. It all happened in a matter of hours. If I have to summarize my impressions, it would be that the Trek District is a great looking bike, a very good and silent ride that is ridiculously well priced for what it offers. That evening I couldn’t help myself and went for another 15km ride. I eventually stopped at a bench and took a closer look. Here are a few pictures of interesting things.
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