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Messages - RussSeaton

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1
General Discussion / Re: Can scooters ride the routes?
« on: September 08, 2014, 02:00:55 pm »
so I can hop on and off the bike path when needed.

NO.  Let me repeat so you understand, NO you cannot ride a motorized scooter on bike paths.  That is the rule/law in my state and I assume it applies to bike paths in other states.  Scooters, like the Italian Vespa ones, are not allowed on bike paths.  They are quasi motorcycles.  Motorized bicycles, bikes with a motor driving one of the wheels, are a different matter.

2
General Discussion / Re: Help me decide on this last minute tour.
« on: August 24, 2014, 03:01:34 pm »
I vote for your Colorado ride.  I have ridden two organized week long rides in Colorado.  There used to be a couple organizations that put on week long rides.  They were good.  Enough mountains to climb.  Few hundred or few thousands of people.  I think they were June or July.  I have toured two weeks in September in the Rockies.  Silverton, Durango, and other towns to the east.  Cold and rainy a couple days.  But the weather was OK.  Pleasant out of the mountains and the climbs and descents were not too bad.  Colorado is good in September.  Plenty of motels in Colorado towns so you do not have to camp.  Enough towns so you do not have to ride too far between refreshments.  Although riding east out of Durango on the state road that goes back to the Rockies, there is nothing for 50 or more miles.  Just wide open desert, waste land.  No towns, no services, no nothing east of Durango.  Never much traffic on the side roads in Colorado.  Always a car every now and then, but you usually have the road to yourself.  I've even ridden on a few busier roads and they were not that busy.

3
Routes / Re: Seeking Advice for a Cross Country Route
« on: August 15, 2014, 11:09:20 am »
Your departure dates are February 1 to March 31.  Too early to be riding anywhere in the northern two thirds of the country.  I'm in the middle of the Midwest, and we can easily get snow and freezing temperatures through March.  Sometimes into April too.  And if you try to start riding in the northeast in Feb. or Mar., you will get snow and freezing temps too.  As already mentioned, the Rocky mountains will have snow and freezing temps into June.  But trying to cycle from the Atlantic to the Rockies before May or June would be so miserable you would likely give up cycling for the rest of your life.  Starting in Feb. or Mar., your only viable option is to ride the Southern Tier.  And if you are finishing up the Northern Tier now, you don't have too much time to get out of the NE and down south to the Southern Tier starting point before the bad weather hits the NE.  You will have bad weather and cold in the NE starting in October and November.  So don't hang around the NE too long.  Get south fast before winter hits.

4
Gear Talk / Re: trikes
« on: August 06, 2014, 04:20:06 pm »
I have a friend with a trike.  That is as close to trikes as I have gotten.  So be forewarned.  All recumbents are as low as trikes.  Recumbents and trikes have similar riding positions.  So having your head at the same level as a car grill is not unique.  I'm guessing recumbent riders overcome it so trike riders must too.  On recumbents and trikes you are sitting on your backside leaning back a bit with your back against a fabric chair.  And your feet are in front of your body pedaling.  Sticking straight out in front of you.  If being so low bothers you, then do not ride recumbents or trikes and stick with regular bicycles where your head is above the car.

As for safety of trikes.  I have not heard any stories of high rates of accidents with trikes or recumbents compared to regular bicycles.  So guessing they are not any more dangerous or safer than regular bicycles.  I have heard stories that recumbents and likely trikes are more noticed than regular bicycles because they are so different.  Car drivers see them because they are unique.  Safer?  Maybe.  Trikes do have the disadvantage of being wider than a regular bicycle.  Trikes are about 3 feet wide total between the outside wheels.  Regular upright bicycles are about 2 feet wide.  The width of the rider's behind.  So its easier to fit between objects with an upright bicycle.  When riding on the right side of the road, you will have one wheel close to the white line.  And the other wheel will be about 3 feet over.  So with a trike you are taking up more space on the road.  Maybe easier to get sideswiped by a motorist not paying attention or caring.  Probably in reality one foot difference in width should not make any difference on the road.

5
General Discussion / Re: brooks saddle break-in how long
« on: August 04, 2014, 08:28:14 pm »
I'll add to this thread.  I have six bikes with Brooks saddles on them.  And one or two more Brooks saddles in boxes in the basement waiting for their day.  It takes many many many thousands of miles to break in a Brooks saddle.  More miles if its one of the untreated thick models.  Like the B17 or Professional.  Little easier if it one of the soft pretreated models like the Swift or the Team Pro.  Although I think they use extra thick leather on the Team Pro, pretreated or not, its a hard thick saddle.  Two Swift, which are broken in.  Two Professional, which are sort of kind of broken in I guess.  One Team Pro, which is not broken in after years and years and thousands of miles.  It is a hard hard hard piece of leather.  One B17, which is broken in.  As for treatment, put lots of oil and paste and such on the underside and topside, frequently.  Just keep on rubbing various oils on the saddle until it looks like the oils have absorbed into the leather.  Then be sure to coat the saddle once a year, both sides.

6
Gear Talk / Re: Best foot wear for touring?
« on: July 22, 2014, 10:02:40 pm »
Cycling shoes have been some kind of plastic for about a decade or two now.  Wet cycling shoes is not really an issue.  If you wear socks, the socks will get wet from sweat or rain.  But plastic shoes getting wet is not a problem.

7
General Discussion / Re: Touring on carbon
« on: July 21, 2014, 11:22:28 am »
It is a bit odd to revive such an old thread for not reason.  Oh well.  All bicycle frame materials will break.  Racing bikes probably the most often because weight is an important criteria for them and they use the thinnest tubes possible.  Thus less strength.  Its very easy to make a very fragile steel frameset.  Just use very thin and lightweight tubes!  But most companies use heavier and stronger steel tubes because they do not want the reputation of making bikes that break.  Again easy to do.  I suspect touring bikes use steel because it is probably the cheapest material to make a bike from.  Steel foundries and fabricators are very common.  Suspect its easy and cheap to roll a sheet of metal into a circle and weld it into a tube.  Cheapness is why companies do things a certain way.  Steel is cheap!  Whether its the best touring frame material?  Who knows.  You could make a stronger and superior frame out of titanium maybe.  But it would be costly so its not done.  No one uses titanium for touring bikes because of cost.  Making a touring frame from carbon would also be costly probably.  So its not done.  Cheapness is the reason for many many things.  Steel is cheap to make into bike frames.  Long ago all bikes were made from steel because it was the only material.  1970s aluminum started to be used.  Carbon in the 1980s.  Titanium about 80s too.  Steel is also cheap because its an old way of making frames.  Its been around a long time.  Working with aluminum, carbon, titanium is newer and less known.  So more expensive.

8
Routes / Re: Bicycle Tour
« on: July 01, 2014, 04:40:08 pm »
Go to the page below and click on the following routes:
Lewis & Clark
Northern Tier
Transamerica Trail
Pacific Coast

http://www.adventurecycling.org/routes-and-maps/adventure-cycling-route-network/interactive-network-map/

The Transamerica and Lewis&Clark routes both go through Missoula.  Missoula is the home of Adventure Cycling.  The Northern Tier route is about 150 miles north of Missoula.  I am sure the people at Adventure Cycling could tell you which roads to take to get up to the Northern Tier route.  The Pacific Coast route goes down the coast.  Getting from Provo Utah you will have to ride east to meet up with the Transamerica route.  Or go north to Missoula Montana.  Couple hundred miles.  State maps should work fine.  Lewis&Clark, Transamerica, Northern Tier all go over to the Portland or Seattle area.  Meeting up with the Pacific Coast route.  Adventure Cycling sells maps for all of the mentioned routes.

9
Routes / Re: East to West or West to East
« on: June 28, 2014, 03:16:46 pm »
I live in the middle of the country.  Anyone and everyone who rides a bike will tell you the wind comes out of the West during the summer.  Blows to the east.  There is no arguing this fact.  In the summer the wind will also come out of the South and Southwest.  In the winter the wind comes out of the West and North.  Maybe more North than West in the winter.  But summer, wind comes out of the West and South.  This is not 100%.  Occasionally the wind comes out of the East too.  When its going to rain, the storms come from the East.  But it does not rain every single day, so the wind usually comes out of the West.

Another reason to ride west to east is the setting sun.  Sun sets in the west.  So riding to the east you will have the sun above or behind you all day long.  Cars coming up behind you cannot be blinded by the sun if the sun is above or behind you.  Safety.  I do not start riding at daybreak so would never have the sun in my eyes as I am riding east.  I start several hours after daybreak so the sun is well up in the sky.  I will be riding to the east in the late afternoon as the sun begins setting in the west.

10
Gear Talk / Re: Best foot wear for touring?
« on: June 21, 2014, 05:47:47 pm »
From 8AM until about 4PM, use bicycle sandals.  Not mountain bike shoes, sandals.  Shimano and Lake make bike sandals.  You may want to carry along a pair of sneakers for off the bike time in the evening or days you do not ride.  It may not be necessary since bike sandals are fine for wearing off the bike too.

11
General Discussion / Re: equipment & route
« on: May 21, 2014, 06:13:30 am »
In regards to the sleeping bag.  Consider taking a stocking cap or balaclava to sleep in at night and cover your head.  It will help keep you warm at night.  Take a pair of wool socks too and wear them at night.  As others said, your bag will probably be too warm and hot by the time you get to the Midwest and East.

12
Gear Talk / Re: Touring wheel configuration
« on: May 15, 2014, 09:56:18 am »
For 700C touring wheels you cannot go wrong with fairly standard wheels.  36 holes.  Wide, heavy, strong, tough, durable rims.  Whatever model those happen to be.  Many companies make wide, heavy, strong rims with 36 holes.  Just find them.  Hubs, Shimano.  One of their middle of the road mountain bike models.  Check whether your bike is 130mm or 135mm wide rear dropout.  That kind of determines whether you get mountain (135) or road (130) hubs.  Not the high dollar, expensive, maybe more fragile, light XTR model.  All Shimano hubs are good.  Road or mountain.  Just get a regular priced one.  14/15 stainless spokes with brass nipples.  These wheels will work everywhere.

13
I am taking the approach you want clothes to bicycle in and still look presentable at house showings.  You are not looking for racer jerseys and shorts with your company colors and logo on them.  Look at mountain bike clothes in the various catalogs and websites.  And clothes designed for commuting.  You should be able to find shorts or pants that are black or brown.  And look like cotton casual shorts or pants.  But are made of synthetic fibers.  Use Velcro bands around pant legs to keep them out of the chain.  For shirts go to a store that has outdoor type shirts.  But still look OK.  Appropriate colors.  100% cotton will be nice but will get sweaty.  So maybe look for cotton/polyester blends or all polyester shirts.  Probably find Polo style shirts or long sleeve dress type shirts.  Those would look good and be comfortable for biking around town.  Assume you would only ride on pleasant days.  Drive on rainy or suspect days.

14
Gear Talk / Re: 11-32 vs 11-34
« on: April 22, 2014, 04:24:22 pm »
Different people here have posted different opinions as to whether or not you'd notice the difference between 32 and 34, but if somebody offers to give you either an 11-32 or an 11-34, take the 11-34, just in case.

Yes.  No one who posted about there being no real difference between the 32 or 34 cassette claimed the 34 was not easier.  It is.  A little bit easier.  But the difference in ease is negligible.  Probably never notice the difference if you rode both cassettes back to back.  Not worth spending money to change the cassette unless you just want to spend money.  If you have a free choice, then take the 34 cassette.  Assuming your rear derailleur will fit underneath the 34 cog.  Some derailleur hangers are sized so the derailleur cannot get under a 34 cog.  Just fits under a 32 cog.

The person who posted the question has a 44-32-22 crankset and 11-32 cassette.  Assume 9 speed on his Trek 520.  The 22x32 low gear is 18.2 gear inches.  At 90 rpm he is going 4.9 mph.  With a 22x34 low gear the gear inches are 17.1.  At 90 rpm he is going 4.6 mph.  At 80 rpm he is going 4.3 mph with the 32 cog and 4.1 mph with the 34 cog.  0.2 to 0.3 mph difference.  Can you tell the difference?

15
Gear Talk / Re: 11-32 vs 11-34
« on: April 22, 2014, 12:59:22 am »
So you've gained 1365' in 2.92 miles. You plug that into your handy/dandy incline calculator:
http://www.csgnetwork.com/inclinedeclinegradecalc.html
and you get a incline of 8.8%,(which seems awfully low for that hill)
Now, the math is the math. I'm sure the incline calculator is giving you the right % for the numbers you put in.

1365 feet elevation gain
5280 feet per mile
2.92 miles
2.92 x 5280 = 15,417 feet
1365 / 15417 = 8.85%

As you said, the math is the math.  It works out exactly right.  As for 8.8% seeming low for the hill, well, that is the right percentage.

Whether you have a 32 or 34 big cog on the cassette, it won't make any difference climbing, you won't notice any difference pedaling.

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