Saddle Sore – Reviews, Rides & Rablings – Cycling Blog

Mason BokehTi Off-Road Shakedown

This was my first real outing with the Mason BokehTi off-road and fully loaded; 2 days of the South Downs Way.

I’d swapped out the 42t chainring for a 40t to make the steep, lumpy climbs a bit easier. I would have gone for the 38t had it been in stock. My plan is to have the 42t for the road and a 38t for off-road use.

The SRAM Force 1x groupset was ideal for this application. The gearing was good and the brakes were perfect, I didn’t experience any of the issues that I did on the Dorset Gravel Dash with the Tripster ATR.

The MASONxHUNT 650b Adventure Sport wheels and Schwalbe Rocket Rons were amazing. First off, they dealt with the first noticeable puncture (a sizeable 5mm gash) without any action needing to be taken. Downhill lumpiness was absorbed with ease and I felt no fatigue in the arms or hands.

Looking out over Harting Down

The 2.1″ wide Rocket Rons from Schwalbe are strictly too wide for the Mason’s spec, but on a dry route they performed admirably. I had taken them for a short off-road in Dorset after a week of rain and clearance was a slight issue. I think Mason spec 2″ so the Rons are only 2.5mm over (excuse the mixed units) but when I need new tyres I’ll be going 2″ for those wet, muddy paths. Thanks again for convincing me to go tubeless Cal.

My bum and the Fabric Scoop saddle have made friends, the seat didn’t even cross my mind which, I think, is the best a saddle can do.

Not strictly the bike but the Apidura luggage is a perfect match for the Bokeh and echoes Mason’s form equalling function ethos. Lightweight bike packing is en vogue and the market is rapidly expanding with that said I have no reason to have my head turned by any other brand. A better looking and functioning setup I don’t think you will find.

I’m certainly not technically proficient but the BokehTi gave me the confidence to go at it (whatever ‘it’ was) and more often than not I would come out the other side successful. I was surprised how at home it felt off-road considering how well it inhabits the tarmac – all it takes is a 30 second wheel change. You’d expect to find a compromise somewhere but if it’s there I’m yet to uncover it.

I’m not sensitive enough to tell what makes a bike feel good (or I’m not good enough at lying to pretend I do) but my insensitivity can’t take away from the fact that the BokehTi is brilliant. If my Tripster ATR was a capable jack of all trades then my BokehTi is the consummate master.

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Matt

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