Bike Love: Santa Cruz Solo

Working with bikes all day at the shop I see many Solos, many similar to mine, but I guess its like the Rifleman's Creed: there are many like it, but this one is mine.  I can't believe how quickly this little bike has grown on me and since I built it up its been nothing but smiles and trails. The Solo has a zippy ride feel, is possible to ride up climbs and manages to feel both stable and peppy on descents.  Its inaugural ride was at Sandy Ridge and most recently I ran it through the paces at Storey Burn.  This is my first 650b bike and I have no doubt that I chose correctly in picking wheel size.  The bike has a great build right out of the box, but here are a couple of things that I swapped out to make it fit my preferences: 

ODI Lock On Grips.  I chose the Vans ones, because they are awesome.  I'll also mention that I initially thought I would want to chop down the bars right away to fit my small shoulders, but I've been riding them at the stock size of 730mm and don't feel the need to trim them.  The wide bar and short stem are great for control and handling.



Next is the saddle.  The boys at the shop like the stock saddle, but on a ride around the block I very quickly discovered that it wasn't going to work for me.  At all.  So I threw on the Terry Damselfly that I had on my old bike.  Right now I've got the stock seatpost, but without a doubt I'll add a Reverb Stealth on the next paycheck.



The stock crank at the R-Kit level comes with a triple, but I really couldn't imagine a time in which I would need or use a 42 so I pulled it off and replaced it with an e*thirteen bashguard.  Its practical and I think it looks nice too.



No doubt I will swap out and customize it more as I ride (or do something dumb and break it) but for now I'm about as stoked as can be.  Good fit, good frame, good components, good ride.  What more can a girl ask for?