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Messages - johnsondasw

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I'm 6' 2" and ride a 60 cm frame.  However, when I was younger (and almost 6'4"), i could ride any "larger than average" bike and be fine on tours and everything.  In my 50s things started to change and I even quit biking for a while due to aches and pains that would not go away.  After a couple of years off the bike completely, i went and got a bike fit ($150) and have been happily riding pain free (with occasional numb hands).  Anyway, I think zzzz's comments earlier may be apt in many cases like mine, but given that you are 6' 4", RussSeaton has a point too.  You probably would really benefit from some longish rides in the bikes you are considering.

2
Routes / Re: Southern Tier, highway 78 Glamis to Palo Verde, Ca
« on: October 19, 2014, 02:19:01 pm »
I've been on such roads so many times.  I'd suggest getting a mirror if you're not already using one.  On tours there are almost always sections like this., and they are sometimes unavoidable  Without a mirror, I feel so at the mercy of random strangers who are sometimes texting, drunk, eating....you get the idea.  I don't want to be at the absolute mercy of these folks.  I have left the road to avoid cars/trucks coming way to close.

3
General Discussion / Re: Bike Question
« on: October 19, 2014, 02:14:10 pm »
I've done self supported touring with a bike "too light" for touring.  I towed a Burley Nomad trailer with a Specialized Roubaix CF frame bike and it worked great.  I had to buy the alternative attachment system, which replaces the stock rear skewer.  It's super easy to get the thing hooked and unhooked. 

4
General Discussion / Re: Toe clips? Clipless? None of the above?
« on: October 19, 2014, 02:10:27 pm »
I use regular road biking shoes with Crank Brothers "eggbeater" type pedals.  I love 'em. They are much easier to get out of than the old pedals with straps.  They also stick out above what would be the platform area of most other clipons and therefore don't fill with dirt and mud making it hard to get into.  I've been on rides where my partners' system got too muddy/dirty and they had a heck of a time cleaning them out so they could get clipped in. I have never had that happen.

I definitely like being clipped in and will never go back to the old pedals with straps.  Clipped in, you get much more effective pedaling power, especially if you learn to "circle" with each rotation.  Of course, until one learns how to get out of the clips fast, falls are likely.  I took one very soon after getting my new pedals. But that was 11 years ago. 

5
General Discussion / Re: Strange sounds from below
« on: October 19, 2014, 01:59:13 pm »
Do you hear it only when pedaling, or also when coasting? I assume it's a pedaling thing. Over the past 60 years or so I've dealt with many knocking/clicking sounds.  The last time, it was more of a clicking one, that seemed to be around only when pedaling under pressure, not under just "maintenance" pedaling.  Of course, it was a slightly loose pedal.  That does not sound like your deal. I have also had the slightly loose rear skewer deal. I once had a much more pronounced knock and it was in the BB.  I had to tighten the lock ring a little more and it fixed the issue. That was on an old 1970s Nishiki.  Great durable bike that died when my son had it in the back  of a pickup, went around a corner too fast and the bike flew onto the pavement. Hmmm, just how fast to you have to turn to throw a bike out of the back of a pickup?

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General Discussion / Re: Riding on the US Interstates
« on: September 24, 2014, 01:14:46 pm »
  The major danger on Interstates is at the entrance/exit ramps and cyclists have to be very aware at these points.



And another insidious danger is the debris on the side of the road.  You must be very vigilant about this and constantly be scanning the shoulder ahead.  We have all seen large pieces of lumber, chunks of angle iron, car fenders. etc etc.  Hitting these kinds of items could easily result in catastrophic accidents for cyclists.  Also, not cool to suddenly hit the start of rumble strips that you did not see coming!  Those buggers could throw you.

7
General Discussion / Re: Riding on the US Interstates
« on: August 30, 2014, 09:26:46 pm »
I live in central WA state and have ridden at least hundreds, perhaps thousands of miles on I-90 near my home.

But the I-90 bridge over the Columbia at Vantage is an example of what many people are talking about - a death trap. No shoulders, heavy traffic, high speeds and high winds at times. 

Yup!  Did that once, in 1991.  It is a problem.  I have seen folks walking alon with bikes, squeezed against the guardrail.

8
General Discussion / Re: Quick fixes for cyclist's palsy?
« on: August 30, 2014, 03:26:39 pm »
Getting a pro fit saved me from this problem and several others (back, neck, knees...).  After the fit session, I took off on a ride and all of the above issues had disappeared.  I have since ridden thousands of miles pain free.  What a difference!

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General Discussion / Re: Riding on the US Interstates
« on: August 30, 2014, 03:22:57 pm »
I live in central WA state and have ridden at least hundreds, perhaps thousands of miles on I-90 near my home.  There are times I have chosen to ride on the freeway because of the wide shoulders and the lack or really good alternatives.  I don't think it is more dangerous than some of the rural roads around here, but it is less peasant.  I especially don't like the little metal wires that are a product of deteriorating truck tires and give me flats. They can be very hard to find.  I also have come to dislike the noise of the interstate and now chose to use it less than I did 10 years ago.  Back in the late 70s, I was ticketed (warning ticket) for riding on the freeway but the law has changed since then.  I have found lots of bungee cords (hundreds!) on the side of freeway along with some great tools and one time over $200 in a wallet that did have ID in it so I was happy to return it to the owner.  Anyway, the freeway can be a useful alternative at times in some places. Each to his own.

10
Gear Talk / Re: Panniers vs. BOB?
« on: August 03, 2014, 05:26:12 pm »
If you decide on a trailer, be sure to check out the Burley Nomad before buying the Bob. They are different.  i use the Nomad, and have been on rides with folks using the Bob.  I would choose the Nomad 2-wheeled option for stability and loading/finding stuff ease. I agree with Staephi about the drafting issue.  I think it is a big deal, esp for me, as I am a real wind wimp! therefore, when not touring alone I'd prob go with panniers, but use ultralite technology.

11
General Discussion / Re: dogs and security
« on: August 03, 2014, 05:15:27 pm »
I have gotten very good at kicking dogs in the head with either foot and have done it many times.  I live in a rural area and have been attacked probably 20+ times in the past 40 years.  I make no apologies about this.  If a dog attacks, the rider could easily end up on the road under the wheels of a passing vehicle.  That the mortal danger, much more serious than the dog bite danger.  A word of warning--for the inexperienced, the thrust of the kick can throw one off balance and cause  a crash which could also cause one to end up under a car.

I hate the fact that dog owners allow their pets to get into the road.  It's not the dog's fault, but they get the penalty.  I have found that dogs learn and have known ones that have received the kick penalty in the past come charging out, see who is riding past, turn tail and run back into the yard.  To me, that's success for all involved.

12
Gear Talk / Re: From the road: least used gear, most appreciated gear
« on: July 03, 2014, 08:59:12 pm »
My most appreciated items are mirror, headlamp and book.  I usually read well into the night, and sometimes when waking up in the middle of the night.

13
My algorithm is pretty dirt simple. When a tire is worn out, I replace it. I try not to overthink this.

Ditto.  I watch the two little wear holes on my Continentals.  Also, sometimes a rear tire will keep getting frequent flats and then I change it.

14
California / Re: Pacific Coast Sections 4 & 5
« on: June 18, 2014, 04:28:50 pm »
Cool. I got that, I guess I just want some reassurance that if I show up the likeliness of being left standing there looking stupid is minimal. I've never stepped foot on a train, let alone with a tandem bike in tow.

Just don't believe the schedule.  My two ( and last two) Amtrack experiences were horrible, and one was on the coast route.  Both times they were way behind schedule. (We were supposed to be in Seattle mid-afternoon and got there at 1 am.)  Also, the bathrooms were disgusting, rarely cleaned, and the attendants were unhelpful and unfriendly. They even repeatedly lied about where we were and when we would get to our destination! The last time I rode on the Amtrack was 2005, so things may be better now......

15
Pacific Northwest / Re: Bears on Pacific Coast Ride?
« on: June 18, 2014, 04:20:16 pm »
Raccoons, however, will raid your food supply all the way down if it is not secured. 

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