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Thread: beginner road bike???

  1. #151
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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by cy View Post
    cave dave, hmmmm this is getting interesting... the knee over center of pedal is how I've always set bikes up. it's worked for thousands of miles and used by thousands of folks... so I would not call it bunk.
    I didn't call KOP bunk, I called the handlebar/hub thing bunk. I said KOP was a good place to start.

    I'm glad someone is reading the links. I'm actually putting a fair bit of research into each of my posts.
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  2. #152
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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by cave dave View Post
    Its pretty darn difficult to look at a just the bike and tell anything about it, that is why I asked for more info. Ideally I'd go for a ride with robo. Maybe he can make it to FCW-3?

    I wasn't even looking at the compact frame, I was looking at the bar to saddle height. I even rotated the image and plotted a line, but actual measurement will help. I was also taking into account Robo's age (39) and physique. My recommendations would be different for a limber 20 yr old. I'm 38 and rode a much lower bar in my 20s, and I'm no newbie to cycling.



    Comparing the specs of a 53cm to a 55cm Lemond the headtube is 2cm longer and the effective toptube is 2cm longer. The stems are the same size. With the same setup the bars will be 2cm higher and 2 cm further from the saddle. Since raising the bars also brings them back the overall effect is a shorter reach to the bars; therefore, Robo will be leaned over less and there will be less pressure on his hands (helping with the numbing). Increasing the frame size also reduces toe clip overlap (a problem on smaller frames). With the compact frame standover will not be an issue. The larger frame will weigh more though.

    The numbness could also be be caused by the tilt of the bars. They look good in the pic but sometimes just a degree or two makes a huge difference.

    There really are a variety of ways to fit a frame and I ride everything from a 53cm to a 58cm all in comfort.

    In the grand scheme of things all this really doesn't matter though because in 2 yrs either robos bike will be forgotten in the garage or he will have traded it in for something else.
    +

    Again, a larger frame is not the answer. Glad this is clear.
    I'v ridden and raced bikes my whole life, both mountain and road. I truly understand bikes and balance.

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    The photo of the bike is with the latest settings after the shop moved the bars forward just a little. I was unable to ride it with these new settings as weather got very bad. I also do remember the shop did take some type of measurements from my knees on the pedals and they used a weighted string or plum line to do so.

    Honestly I believe it may be plain old soreness from not using the specific muscles in riding. I like the sport thus far and am always learning something. I had no idea so much tech stuff was involved with riding a bike.
    Is that an ARC in your pocket or are you just small like that?

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    I am having trouble with the focus on this crappy camera however I will try to add a few pics of me with the bike...just to show the frame size. I feel this bike is plenty big for me and in person it looks normal. Most all the bikes I saw on line looked small until I was able to actually ride them. I was not able to balance long enough to take a photo of me on the bike however I feel as if it is fit to my frame pretty well. I have one of me beside the bike then one of me straddling the top tube to show the seat height a little better.









    Is that an ARC in your pocket or are you just small like that?

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by Robocop View Post
    The biggest fear I had all day was other traffic. It seems as if everyone is in such a hurry and I hugged the outermost section of roadway however there were still many cars that got very close. The sidewalks in this one area are horrible and full of step ups and many times I was shocked at just how easy it was to lose control of this bike. The tires are very thin and hard due to the 120 psi rating so rough terrain is not something I wish to test. I have heard stories of rude or even dangerous motorists however now I see just how bad it could be at times. And this was a quiet little town so I can only imagine a congested city full of higher speed traffic.
    You're quite right here. Potholes that you would barely notice in a car can easily cause a fall if you hit them at the wrong angle. As for motorists, my motto is to ride as if I'm invisible, meaning that I don't have to depend upon anyone seeing me to avoid a collision. Learning to ride in traffic comes in time. I still usually avoid traffic when I can, but when I encounter it I have no trouble dealing with it. Friday I went for a ride along Northern Boulevard around maybe 7:30PM. Pretty much still rush hour traffic with cars packed in moving at 30-35 mph, and all I had was 3 feet of space between the traffic and the rows of parked vehicles. Lots of fun in a way knowing that I can ride in traffic like this when I have to. Probably the best way to describe situations like this is sensory overload. You're looking in all directions for obstacles such as parked cars pulling out, pedestrians, potholes, inattentive drivers drifting into your space, people exiting cars, etc. These sights and sounds coupled with moving along at 25 mph under your own power make this a Zen experience of sorts. Not for everyone, definitely, but I love riding in these conditions once in a while, processing all the sights and sounds of the city at a mesmerizing pace.

    All in all I enjoyed it and believe it or not I am not really very sore at all. I have a little pain in my calves and for some reason the outer edges of my ankles and a little to the edges of my feet. My g/f mentioned some type of lotion type friction reducer that men and women use to prevent chaffing and I plan to try this next time.
    I get somewhat sore when I haven't ridden in a while. It comes from breaking in muscles which didn't see much use. Once you ride a few times a week, the pains will gradually diminish. The trick is to not try to do too much in one shot. I always start with 10 or so miles rides when I've been idle a few weeks. If not, I pay for it the next day.

    At higher speeds I really noticed the ability of this bike. It was very unforgiving as far as steering and I had to really watch any stray movements. It almost did feel like I was on rails and I could tell the bike was very lite and wanted to go where I pointed it. many times while pedaling and trying to talk I took my eyes away from what I was doing. I quickly realized the bike was off course and it is just really sensative to movement.
    On rails is as good a description as any. High pressure tires pretty much have very similar rolling characteristics to steel wheels on steel rails. The ride seems about the same, too. Some bikes are more forgiving than others, but in general a shorter wheelbase will be more responsive, a bit faster, and also less forgiving.

    13 miles today before the rain came with a top speed of 38.7 mph.
    Excellent-38.7 mph! Now you're one of us! I'll admit that on most of my rides I don't get much over 30 mph, at least with that slug of a bike I'm currently riding. The Raleigh (red bike) is a good deal faster. High 30s to low 40s at some point in nearly every ride was normal for that bike. 13 miles is a pretty good workout for your first ride.

    The biggest suprise of the day really was what I learned about drafting. My g/f explained a bigger rider at high speed could actually pull a smaller rider if the smaller rider remained very close to the rear of the bigger rider. I tried an experiment where I rode up front and it was harder to do by myself however when I let her take the lead and I rode behing her it was much easier to pedal and even she was able to pull me with her draft.....I can only imaging what it would be like if I had several riders in front of me pulling me in their wake.
    While I rarely draft other riders I draft large vehicles like buses and semis whenever I get the opportunity (and I'm on a road I know is free of potholes). Besides being able to go much faster (40 mph behind a bus is easy), your acceleration at higher speeds is quicker by virtue of using very little energy to fight wind drag. All you're overcoming is tire drag, so most of your power goes right into acceleration. I use drafting whenever I ride in traffic, as opposed to being to the right of it. If I draft a bus, I can go from a standing start to 30 mph in 10 or 11 seconds. This is enough to keep up with traffic. Breaking my own wind, it might take me twice as long. 0-20 mph is probably almost the same whether drafting or not, but 20-30 mph takes forever unless you're drafting.

    I am having trouble with the focus on this crappy camera however I will try to add a few pics of me with the bike...just to show the frame size. I feel this bike is plenty big for me and in person it looks normal. Most all the bikes I saw on line looked small until I was able to actually ride them. I was not able to balance long enough to take a photo of me on the bike however I feel as if it is fit to my frame pretty well. I have one of me beside the bike then one of me straddling the top tube to show the seat height a little better.
    Your bike looks fine for your height. Here are some pics of mine. I'm about the same height as you. The Raleigh is actually a little large for me but your bike looks like it has a slightly smaller frame. It seems perfect for you.

    Raleigh awaiting airless tires. Note the new aero wheels:



    My "daily driver". This is actually just an old Huffy upgraded with a few spare parts (alloy wheels, new drivetrain, new seal-bearing crankset). Unfortunately, it's as slow as hell compared to the Raleigh. I think it weighs in at over 30 pounds!

    Last edited by jtr1962; 04-28-2008 at 02:24 AM.

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    jtr1962 I have to say that there is something crazy about the casual way you mention "drafting behind a bus"....holy smoke I can not imagine having the nerve to ever do that but again I am not an experienced rider.

    The top speed I clocked was down a mild hill with me pedaling and a gradual curve made me slow a little.....I kind of lost my nerve towards the bottom. I was happy to see the bike was stable at higher speed but again as a beginner I did not press my luck. Most of my first ride was spent in the 13 to 18 mph range and for me that was a nice pace.

    The tires on my bike are 700x23 and I think the psi rating is 120. I forgot to air the tires up before I rode and the bike had sat for about 4 days prior to riding. The shop reminded me to always check my pressure however I was so eager to ride I simply forgot. Can a few pounds of air pressure really make a big difference?......Why do the tires need to be constantly checked....I mean if the bike has not been ridden where does the pressure go anyway?

    My g/f said after a week or so her tires will always need a little air and she thinks all tires will slowly leak down air even if not ridden on. Is this true for all roadbike tires?....why do they slowly leak down if there is no puncture in the tube?
    Is that an ARC in your pocket or are you just small like that?

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by Robocop View Post
    jtr1962 I have to say that there is something crazy about the casual way you mention "drafting behind a bus"....holy smoke I can not imagine having the nerve to ever do that but again I am not an experienced rider.
    It's not something I do very often nor do I take it very lightly even if my post seemed casual about it. I'll be the first to admit drafting a large vehicle can be dangerous if you don't know what you're doing. First thing as I said is to make sure I'm on a road that I've ridden on recently and know for a fact has no potholes on the stretch I'm on. When you're close to a large vehicle, it's a given that you'll never see potholes in time to stop, so this is a must. Second, you don't need to be right on the bumper to get a good draft. Even 15-20 feet back the bus is blocking most of the wind and at least gives you some chance to see any debris in your path. Third, you need to be very aware of every sound the bus makes. The moment I hear the engine throttling down, I back off because I assume the driver is slowing or stopping and I don't want to become a bumper ornament. Doing all those things mitigates the danger by quite a bit, but there's no getting around it, drafting a bus or semi is risky just by virtue of the fact that you're going 40+ mph on a bicycle. So is drafting another cyclist at 40 mph, or even riding solo downhill at that speed. A good bike is stable at speed, a good rider can handle it. But if you have a blowout and fall at high speeds, you can get seriously injured. A few years after I started riding a lot, I hit a pothole at 37 mph and fell (no, I wasn't drafting a bus, rather it was night and I just didn't see it). Fortunately, all I ended up with was road rash. The moment I felt the bike falling, I stretched out my arms to protect my head, and went sliding along arms outstretched while digging in my sneakers to slow me down. When I finally stopped, I wiped moisture off my head but was afraid to look for fear it was blood. Thankfully, only sweat. The point where I stopped sliding was about 100 feet from the pothole. To this day I realize it could have been much worse, so I don't do bursts of speed unless I'm very sure of the bike, the road, and myself. I'll also add that one of the main reasons I'm getting airless tires is to mitigate the danger at speed factor. I like to go fast, but I'm keenly aware that a blowout at high speeds can ruin my day. Anything I can do to reduce my risk is worthwhile. As they say, the safest crash is one which never happens.

    I'll also add that my main reason for drafting is to be able to keep up with traffic on roads where there isn't enough room to ride on the right. Some examples might be some small bridges with very narrow, or nonexistent, shoulders. Some roads with no parking are like that as well. The rare times I'm on these roads it's either keep up with traffic, or risk getting rear-ended. So drafting may have its own risks, but overall I'm probably minimizing my risk just by not having cars overtake me. And of course there are times where draft just for fun. I'll be on a mostly empty, smooth road, nice day, and along comes a bus. If he's slowing or stopped, I can catch his wake. I personally think drafting other cyclists is more risky in that if one goes over, everyone behind them can. In the end cycling is like any other sport, you enjoy it while being keenly aware of what you can and can't do. I couldn't imagine sticking with any other form of exercise for this long. Cycling rarely gets boring for me. When it does, I just wait until the desire returns.

    The top speed I clocked was down a mild hill with me pedaling and a gradual curve made me slow a little.....I kind of lost my nerve towards the bottom. I was happy to see the bike was stable at higher speed but again as a beginner I did not press my luck. Most of my first ride was spent in the 13 to 18 mph range and for me that was a nice pace.
    13 to 18 mph is a nice pace for many riding situations. Often in heavy traffic I'll ride in that range even though I can go faster just to give myself a cushion. Even as an experienced rider there's times I'll lose my nerve is similar situations. Sometimes things just don't feel right, and I back off. I use premonition quite a bit. It's saved me numerous times. Sometimes I'll feel myself drifting a little left without realizing it, and half a block later someone whom I didn't see opens their car door. Had I not moved left, I might have hit the door. Other times I'll feel a giant hand slowing me down, and maybe some obstacle appears which I surely would have hit a few blocks later. If your ever get premonitions while cycling, my advice is to heed them. Worst case you wasted a little energy by slowing down. As a general rule, if you don't feel comfortable doing something, then don't do it. And when in doubt, don't. Thanks to a combination of defensive riding and the other things I've mentioned I've never had any crash where I was seriously injured. Most of my crashes occurred the first few years while getting my road legs. It's been about 7 or 8 years since I've fallen off the bike at all.

    The tires on my bike are 700x23 and I think the psi rating is 120. I forgot to air the tires up before I rode and the bike had sat for about 4 days prior to riding. The shop reminded me to always check my pressure however I was so eager to ride I simply forgot. Can a few pounds of air pressure really make a big difference?......Why do the tires need to be constantly checked....I mean if the bike has not been ridden where does the pressure go anyway?

    My g/f said after a week or so her tires will always need a little air and she thinks all tires will slowly leak down air even if not ridden on. Is this true for all roadbike tires?....why do they slowly leak down if there is no puncture in the tube?
    Yes, tires do leak slowly but I find mine don't get noticeably worse until at least a week. They might leak 10 psi in a week, but the difference between 110 psi and 100 psi isn't that noticeable. Usually by the time I notice the bike feels harder to ride they're down to something like 70 or 80 psi. That could take a few weeks in the winter. In the summer if it's hot maybe only a week. The reason bike tires leak is because the tubes have micropores. Air molecules will gradually diffuse out. Latex tubes are worse in this regard but they're sometimes used by hard core riders because they're a little lighter.
    Last edited by jtr1962; 04-28-2008 at 05:50 AM.

  8. #158

    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by Robocop View Post

    The tires on my bike are 700x23 and I think the psi rating is 120. I forgot to air the tires up before I rode and the bike had sat for about 4 days prior to riding. The shop reminded me to always check my pressure however I was so eager to ride I simply forgot. Can a few pounds of air pressure really make a big difference?......Why do the tires need to be constantly checked....I mean if the bike has not been ridden where does the pressure go anyway?
    The air seeps directly through the walls of the inner tube & tire, like conventional NiMH batteries begin to lose charge as soon as they come off the charger. Top your tires off before every ride (or at least daily). This is important for several reasons:

    1) underinflated tires are more prone to pinch-flats when you hit stuff (pothole, small rock, etc)

    2) underinflated tires don't protect your wheel rims (the metal part) as well. Want to see those fancy wheels with a dent in them? And the rim is the brake rotor too. Thump, thump, thump

    3) underinflated tires don't go as fast


    As several of us mentioned, you might want to look at bigger tires too. 700 x 25 or 700 x 28 give you more rim protection for just a little more weight than 700 x 23. If you stick with the 23's then definitely keep them cranked to max rated pressure. Remember, when riding in a group, or entrained in traffic, you can't always see what you're about to ride over.
    Last edited by mechBgon; 04-28-2008 at 09:46 AM.

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by mechBgon View Post
    As several of us mentioned, you might want to look at bigger tires too. 700 x 25 or 700 x 28 give you more rim protection for just a little more weight than 700 x 23.
    +1 on the 700x25 or 700x28. Big difference in shock resistance for a very slight (few tenths of a mph) speed penalty, mostly from the slightly wider profile (=more aero drag). Worth it IMO.

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    +

    Robo, wow, you are one big dude!

    Two thing I see; your saddle is tilted up in front, some people like that, consider having it more parallel to the ground.
    Another thing you could talk to your bike shop about,..possibly a slightly longer stem. (1 or 2cm longer).

    Obviously you are into lifting, which is sudden bursts of max power.
    With cycling you will have to train you muscles to do fast repetition over long periods of time.
    {this is the whole Fast twitch, Slow twitch muscle thing}

    You will get more out of your cycling in the long run if you really try to spin high cadence (high RPM). Using Slow Twitch.

    ~By the way, I run my road stem tilted up also; w/ 6 degree rise, and 3/4" spacer...
    Last edited by orbital; 04-28-2008 at 02:17 PM. Reason: add

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Boy you are a big dude!

    Quote Originally Posted by orbital View Post
    Another thing you could talk to your bike shop about,..possibly a slightly longer stem. (1 or 2cm longer).
    So a 2 cm longer stem makes sense but a 2cm longer top tube doesn't?

    Robo, you have any issues with toe overlap between your toe and the tire?
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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Dave I have no idea what toe overlap is however if it has to do with my shoes they feel pretty good.

    I am not sure what the stem is either....if I replace the stem will that raise the bars higher?...or does the stem make the bars move out further?
    Is that an ARC in your pocket or are you just small like that?

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by Robocop View Post
    Dave I have no idea what toe overlap is however if it has to do with my shoes they feel pretty good.

    I am not sure what the stem is either....if I replace the stem will that raise the bars higher?...or does the stem make the bars move out further?
    It is the overlap you get between your foot and the front tire. Put your foot on one pedal and rotate it backwards until the pedal is at the full forward position, now turn the handlebars. The front wheel will probably hit your foot. Don't worry too much about the overlap, it's not that big a deal in normal riding, I was just curious. You will never turn the handlebars that much if you are going faster than 2 mph.

    The stem is the extension that holds the handlebars to the fork. They come in a variety of sizes and tilts and also adjustable ones are available but they are heavier. Basically the frame size gets you in the ballpark and you fine tune the rider position with the stem.

    Play with the numbers here and you will see:
    http://alex.phred.org/stemchart/Default.aspx
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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by Robocop View Post
    Dave I have no idea what toe overlap is however if it has to do with my shoes they feel pretty good.

    I am not sure what the stem is either....if I replace the stem will that raise the bars higher?...or does the stem make the bars move out further?
    +

    Your bars are attached to your stem. A 1cm stem increase will raise your up and out a bit.

    ~My bike came stock with a slightly too short of stem, I absolutely would not have gone to the next size frame.

    'Front end stuff' with your bike takes a little time to figure out ,...be patient.

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    holy smokes 38MPH on your first time out!!!
    you're a beast

    good stuff

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Dave I just checked the toe overlap and with my shoes clipped in and the pedal forward the tire just barely touches the tip of my shoe when turned hard....never even noticed it however when riding I dont think it will be an issue.

    I will get the shop to check the stem this weekend as I have another planned trip for Saturday. I believe they will exchange it for free if I have any trouble as I do remember they swapped out the stem on the Madone for my g/f however at the time I did not know what the part was.....I saw it listed on the receipt and it was labeled as zero charge with exchange of the factory part.

    scaredofthedark believe me that top speed was all downhill and I got a little nervous at the bottom so I backed off. I did find that I was not in the proper gear for downhill as when I looked I still had a few gears left on the bottom sprocket.....maybe with practice I can better this.

    I am having trouble feeling what gear to be in for the best results but again I will learn all this in time. I do not understand the gear levers really as the shop tried to show me how to work the "trim" feature. They explained with certain gears I could pull the lever in harder and would hear a slight clicking sound and this was the trim fine tuning the settings. I have made it work a few times but mostly I never hear the 'click". It shifts just fine but again with some gears the chain will be at an odd angle and it works much smoother when I get the trim to adjust correct. The biggest problem I had was when trying to figure out the fine tuning each time I worked the lever it switched to another gear. Out of habit I am grabbing the entire shifter when each one actually has two parts. I believe the shifters are Shimano Tiagra and made to work with my fingers rather than my thumbs like the Sora style shifters.

    Regardless I am learning daily and in no time will be able to enjoy this much more. This Saturday my g/f and I are planning a trip to a nearby small town on some country roads. the trip is about 13 miles one way and we plan to eat lunch and drive back home for a total of 26 miles. As a precaution we are going to take two cars and drive to the town and leave my vehicle there. This way if we have bad weather (or eat too much..hehe) we can simply load the bikes up and drive back in my car. If we decide to bike home we will just drive back later and pick up my truck.

    The biggest thrill thus far for me is biking several miles and looking back on how far I have gone.....then knowing I did it all with just my own pedal power is just pretty cool to me. I can honestly see me some day running many of my errands by bike alone. It is cost effective and much more healthy and gives a good feeling of being self reliant. Now if I can just figure out how to avoid that fire crotch from these riding pants and saddle I will be all set....LOL
    Is that an ARC in your pocket or are you just small like that?

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    I talked to the shop today and they said they would do some measurements this weekend and check my stem. They said they would swap the stem for a new one of different size if there was a problem. They did say that I would have to use the stem for a long ride before I would know if it worked well.

    I am very happy with this shop as they offered to do it again for free. They even offered to swap the pedals and shoes for free if I did not like the fit after riding a little more.
    Is that an ARC in your pocket or are you just small like that?

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by Robocop View Post
    I talked to the shop today and they said they would do some measurements this weekend and check my stem. They said they would swap the stem for a new one of different size if there was a problem. They did say that I would have to use the stem for a long ride before I would know if it worked well.

    I am very happy with this shop as they offered to do it again for free. They even offered to swap the pedals and shoes for free if I did not like the fit after riding a little more.
    That all sounds right. It really seems like a you got a great shop. Neither of the two in this area are like that. When I bought my high end MTB I drove 5 hrs R/T to the shop I used to deal with in the Norfolk VA area. Saddly they sold out to a not so good shop.
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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Dave I really did use the quality of the shop as a big factor in the bike I bought and I did not hesitate to ask questions as to the quality of their service. The shop I bought from told me up front that they used the quality of their service to ensure repeat customers.

    Between my g/f and myself we purchased 3200 dollars worth of items and they assured me they wished to keep us as customers. They said that most people usually trade up within a few years and when we decided to buy again they asked us to return to them. I asked directly about replacement parts and they said the cost to replace pedals or smaller things was nothing to them if it would assure us as future customers.

    They did say it may take weeks for me to figure exactly what set up I liked and not to worry about adjustments or parts. I was up front in explaining the problems I had with other shops and they said that most of their customers have the same stories and as such they get that much more business.

    One of the employees even offered to ride with me for a few miles to watch my pedaling style and to offer any suggestions. The bike my g/f traded cost 1100 new and on trade she got 600 dollars....the bike was 2 years old and had been wrecked with a few scratches so again they did everything they could to earn our business. I have a ride this weekend but sadly it is said to be bad weather again. I am anxious to try the newest settings out and will keep you posted when I do get it all just right.

    I am looking at Nashbar and Pricepoint now for some other goodies and am thinking of maybe buying a hydrapack system. I went through my two water bottles pretty quick last time and it is only getting hotter each weekend.
    Is that an ARC in your pocket or are you just small like that?

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    +

    Sounds like your off to a good start.

    I have purchased from PricePoint many times before, actually getting some mtn. bike tires tomorrow from them.

    Try freezing your water bottles ( I like Cytomax in one of my water bottles, the other,..just water) about 3/4 full, top off before you go and you'll have super refreshing fluids.

    I'm not sure how much you know about recovery meals;
    right after you are done cycling, have a small meal based on carbohydrates, a little protein...this is very important.
    (keep in mind there is a real narrow window for your recovery meal, so ASAP)

    Keep up the good work!..
    Last edited by orbital; 05-02-2008 at 07:38 AM. Reason: add

  21. #171
    Flashaholic* chimo's Avatar
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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by orbital View Post
    +

    Sounds like your off to a good start.

    I have purchased from PricePoint many times before, actually getting some mtn. bike tires tomorrow from them.

    Try freezing your water bottles (or energy drink) about 3/4 full, top off before you go and you'll have super refreshing fluids.

    I'm not sure how much you know about recovery meals;
    right after you are done cycling, have a small meal based on carbohydrates, a little protein...this is very important.
    (keep in mind there is a real narrow window for your recovery meal, so ASAP)

    Keep up the good work!..

    Here's an funny twist. I started my commuting season here (Ottawa, Canada) at the end of March. We had a lot of snow during the winter (14+ feet) and the temperature still dipped below freezing overnight. One particular morning, it was -8C (18F) with about a 25km/h (16mph) headwind. I filled my water bottle from the tap as usual. By the time I got to work (~35-40min), I had an nice layer of ice on the inside of my water bottle!

  22. #172

    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Hydration packs are nice to have. The water in the pack changes temperature relatively slowly, and the popular 70-ounce capacity approximately doubles your total capacity when combined with your two waterbottles.

  23. #173
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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    I have bought a small pack that attatches under my saddle and it has a limited amount of space. Thus far I have one spare tube as well as 2 small plastic type tire changing tools with two Co2 canisters and a small nozzle for filling the tube. I have room for a few more items and wonder what experienced riders carry with them?

    Are the compressed canisters ok for use or should I consider one of those small manual pumps that attatch to the frame? Any other must haves for the small pack? My g/f keeps a few of those energy gel packs in hers however she rides much farther than I do and actually uses them wisely.

    On say a 26 mile ride should I use plain water in my bottles or maybe add a little salt and sugar? I really do not like the sports drinks that replace glucose like Gatorade....they seem too thick in taste and seem to make me more thirsty. In the coming hot months will plain water be enough for longer rides?
    Is that an ARC in your pocket or are you just small like that?

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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    resisted carrying a hydration pack for years. almost always carried two standard size bottles. one plain water, other with some type of sports drink.

    rider preference, but I always use plain water until it starts getting really hot. find out what works for you. I'll never carry sports drink alone. need plain water to dunk yourself.

    you don't want to put anything but water in your water bladder. very hard to clean out. I'll carry one std size bottle for sports drink + camelbak.

    if you do decide to carry a hydration pack. camelbak is the way to go. their bladder/bite valve seems to be designed the best.

    scored several camelbaks on cpf B/S/T. soldiers leaving for iraq, then not deploying, have killer military version new camelbaks for sale.

    takes a bit to figure out which size camelbak is best for you. folks are different on gear carried. my preference is just enough room for: basic tools, spare tube, road morph pump, patch kit, snack and a light rain jacket.

    again.. rider preference, but don't like CO2 cartridges. you have only two shots. too many times limped home on slow leaks. road morph pump is my favorite.

    price point is an excellent source for tires/tubes. my preferences is 25mm continental and specialized armadillo tires. have purchased loads of conti's from price point at 25% of retail prices.

  25. #175

    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by Robocop View Post

    Any other must haves for the small pack?
    As I mentioned before, you might want a master link for your chain, and a chain tool if you don't have one already (Park Tool CT-5 is good). That enables you to repair the chain if you have chain damage or breakage. And plastic tire levers are a must-have, if you don't have them already.

    Note that the master links come in different widths to suit different chains. Your bike shop can set you up with the correct width.

    Oh, and I also recommend carrying a patch kit, preferably the glue-type rather than "glueless." Yeah, I carry spare tubes like everyone, but sometimes luck is against you and you need Plan B That's the same reason I use a tire pump instead of CO2, too.
    Last edited by mechBgon; 05-02-2008 at 09:09 AM.

  26. #176
    Flashaholic* orbital's Avatar
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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    +

    I don't like to carry lots of rather unnecessary stuff,..keeping it simple.
    {Learned how to be very easy on my drivetrain while cycling}

    So I bring:

    Park MT-1 tool (can work on nearly my whole bike)
    Tube & Tire lever
    ID & Cash
    CO2 setup
    A little snack and liquids in water bottles.

    That's it,...maybe a cell phone could go also.

    ~ This all goes in the back of my cycling jersey.

    Last edited by orbital; 05-02-2008 at 01:33 PM. Reason: spellin'

  27. #177
    Flashaholic* chimo's Avatar
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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by orbital View Post
    +
    A little smack and liquids in water bottles.
    What!!!???? Is that a performance enhancer?

  28. #178
    Flashaholic* orbital's Avatar
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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by chimo View Post
    What!!!???? Is that a performance enhancer?
    +

    smack, snack,...

  29. #179

    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    Quote Originally Posted by orbital View Post
    +

    smack, snack,...
    We better test this guy for EPOs

    Robocop, one more tip for riding with others: the lead rider in a "paceline" is expected to guide the other riders safely away from potholes, broken glass, protruding manhole covers, storm drains, and other road hazards. So if you end up taking your turn at the front of a paceline, then

    (1) be vigilant about looking as far ahead as possible for hazards, and

    (2) remember that the people behind you don't all maneuver with you, they "snake" along behind you. So if you see a pothole ahead, you want to begin guiding your followers clear of it well in advance, not right before you get there. People need time to react.

    (3) as he begins to change course to avoid the hazard, the lead rider usually points down at the ground on the side where the hazard will be, and may also call it out ("GLASS!"). The people behind him will duplicate the hand signal back down the line. This helps the followers know they need to hold the line of the rider in front because there's a hazard coming up that they can't necessarily see. Again, do this with plenty of time for people to react down the line, not when you're right on top of the hazard.

    In my area, if the hazard is an "area-effect" hazard such as broken glass or gravel, the hand signal is an open hand, pointed palm-down with the fingers spread out and shaken a bit, to show it's a spread-out hazard.

    It's always nice to be in a paceline led by a "smooth operator"
    Last edited by mechBgon; 05-02-2008 at 10:05 PM.

  30. #180
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    Default Re: beginner road bike???

    The group advice is good however for now I will stay solo of with my g/f. From what I have seen most group rides start pretty nice however always have several who wish to go all out as if they have to prove something. I have no desire to go all out with a few guys and am more concerned with enjoying myself right now.

    Most recently a friend at work was involved in a beginner group ride that had maybe 15 riders. There were two guys in the ride that showed up on 6k bikes all dressed in the latest gear. They smoked everyone of course as they were seasoned riders and probably ruined the experience for the others..

    I also am working on the chain tool and master link mentioned by mechBon and I did not realize a chain tool could be so small. The shop has me one on hold however did say that it is very rare to break a chain with weekend riding. They did say however that if it happens it is impossible to repair in the field without tools and links.

    I bought some riding shorts tonight at Dicks Sporting goods for 39 dollars. They are padded well and fit nice but I found very few styles for men. The womens section had many more shorts to choose from. I found a mens pair however wondered if the womens were made different so I compared. By looking it seems as if the padded sections are identical with the womens shorts running a little smaller. I am curious if a womens large would be ok as there were maybe 15 more choices on the womens side.....is there really any difference as I can find no visible differences between the two.

    I would like to have a few pair and after searching all over only found one pair in mens. If I would have bought a womens style I could have had maybe 4 more pair for even less cost. My g/f warned against it saying she thought the padding was different somehow so I just bought one mens pair and left.
    Is that an ARC in your pocket or are you just small like that?

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