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Messages - RussSeaton

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61
I've driven in the northwest US a bit, but not biked there.  I'd suggest flying to Seattle or Portland.  Get on the Pacific Coast highway route and go down to San Francisco.  You would see the redwood forests.  Then cross the Sierras over to the central valley in California.  Near Sacramento.  Head north.  Sequoia Park is somewhere in there I think.  Ride near the mountains in California and Oregon and Washington.  Rainier Mountain in Washington.  Then back to Seattle.  Make a small loop in the northwest on both sides of the mountains.  Cross them once or twice.  Tailwind on the Pacific Coast going south.  Six weeks might be enough time.  It is very scenic in that part of the US.  Yellowstone has a lot of traffic and there are only a few roads in the park.  So all the cars are on those roads with your bicycle.  Its worth seeing Yellowstone.  But drive there, not bike.

62
Gear Talk / Re: Good winter SPD shoes?
« on: January 24, 2016, 07:10:46 pm »
I was a carry my clothes each day commuter.  We had a casual dress code at work.  Polo shirt, t-shirt, cotton pants, black socks.  Think I left my belt at work with my shoes.  Used a backpack like college kids use to carry books to class.

63
Gear Talk / Re: Thoughts on "fat-tired" touring bikes?
« on: January 24, 2016, 07:05:45 pm »
Gravel IS a lot of big sharp edges.

No.  Its maybe possible to have a sharp edge on gravel.  But not likely.  Gravel on roads in the USA are made from limestone.  Its a very soft rock.  Easily crushed and easily rounded by use.  Gravel roads in the US are not made out of granite that can hold a sharp edge.  And you are confused about pinch flats and cut tires.  They are not the same.  Pinch flats occur when the tire hits a sharp edge, such as the edge of a pothole, at high speed.  The tire and tube are compressed so the edge of the rim contacts the tube.  And you get two holes in the tube about an inch apart.  As wide as the rim.  Skinny tires with low pressure ridden on pothole paved roads can result in pinch flats easily.  You are talking about cut tires.  There are many situations where tires can get cut.  Cut tires and pinch flats are not the same.  The railroad beds you are talking about are not made from limestone like gravel roads.  Railroads use a different rock of much larger size for the track beds.  You will never see this rock on gravel roads or trails in the US.

64
Gear Talk / Re: Thoughts on "fat-tired" touring bikes?
« on: January 23, 2016, 05:43:30 pm »
I wouldnt ride gravel with high pressure road tires... You'll pinch flat in no time.

? ? ?  How could you pinch flat on a gravel road?  Pinch flats occur when riding at high speed on a skinny tire and you ride into a SHARP edge.  Such as the edge of a large pothole you ride over.  The front tire will clear the edge due to momentum or you pulling the front tire off the ground.  The back tire will drop into the pothole and crash, at full speed, into the sharp hard edge of the pothole.  Pothole in a paved, hard surface road.  All the potholes I've seen on gravel roads have very smooth and rounded over edges.  And are not very deep because with a gravel road, the surface is not hard so it moves into the lower pothole.  Sort of filling the pothole up.  Not really sure a pothole can develop in a gravel road.  As for the size of the gravel.  All the gravel I've ever seen is 1 inch in size or less.  On gravel roads you do not see big chunks of rock that fill your entire palm.  That is not gravel, that is rock chunks.  Gravel roads are not made from rock chunks.  They are made from rock that has been crushed and sorted to the size of small gravel.  And even with rock chunks, I doubt you would ever ride fast enough on such a surface to induce a pinch flat.

65
Gear Talk / Re: Good winter SPD shoes?
« on: January 23, 2016, 05:31:10 pm »
Agree with the other post.  Kept my dress work shoes in a desk drawer.  I did carry fresh clothes back and forth each day.  Changed into the shoes at the beginning and end of the day.  Wore SPD sandals most of the time.  In winter I had some Lake winter boot/shoes.  Also had neoprene booties over them if it was bad.  And wool socks of course.  There are several companies that make SPD winter boot/shoes.  They have a rubber lugged sole so are fine for walking.  Have a friend who is a proponent of sandals with multiple pairs of wool socks during the winter.  If going that route I'd also recommend neoprene booties on top of many wool socks and sandals.

66
Gear Talk / Re: Peter White Cycles
« on: January 08, 2016, 10:49:20 am »
I can't speak as to why.  I can only report that when I laid the tensiometer on the wheel as received, the drive side was tensioned to 85-90 kgf.  As noted, some of the spokes were going slack after a year, so I brought the DS spokes up to 105+/-5 kgf, and it's been trouble-free since then.

Your tensiometer reading just means the wheel was not built to the proper tension, maximum, when it was built.  Does not imply it was right or wrong.  I think it was wrong, but others may think otherwise.  The fact you had loose spokes so quickly and had to tension it higher kind of supports my idea that it was wrong and not tensioned properly.  But...

67
Gear Talk / Re: Peter White Cycles
« on: January 07, 2016, 10:52:19 pm »
Had never heard of this idea of tensioning the wheel differently depending on the weight of the rider.  Seems bizarre to me.  I just make the wheels as strong as possible.  Which is strong enough to carry any load weight.  Thicker spokes are generally better on the drive side.  14/15 double butted.  Brass nipples over aluminum nipples on the drive side at least.  Aluminum nipples are more than fine everywhere else.  Tension the drive side spokes to the maximum the rim and hub and nipples can handle.  Maximum tension equals strongest.  Then tension the non drive side as much as possible to center the rim between the hub nuts.  I prefer three cross over any other pattern.

What you people are talking about implies you would intentionally make the wheel less strong if you knew the weight was going to be less.  Why would you intentionally build a wheel weaker than as strong as possible?  Its no more difficult to make the wheel maximum strong as opposed to weaker.

Now if you are concerned with getting the strongest wheel possible.  Then big, thick, heavy, deep aluminum rims are best.  Offset rim if possible.  Offset rim helps to even the tension between the drive and non drive sides.  Usually the non drive side spokes are lightly tensioned compared to the drive side.  And thus will detension and break if you hit enough bumps.  MOST spokes possible.  14/15 double butted spokes.  High quality hub of course.  3 or maybe 4 cross if its a tandem wheel with 48 spokes.  And tension it as I described above.  This wheel will be much stronger overall than a 28 spoke wheel with 1 or 2 cross on the drive side and radial on the non drive side.  And using aluminum nipples and 14/17 light weight spokes.  And a carbon fiber hub.

68
General Discussion / Re: Down Tube Shifters
« on: January 06, 2016, 03:40:57 pm »
As to the cost, yes Tiagra can be less expensive and are the Ultegras you mention the current 11-speed versions or left over 10-speed?  That said, the Gevenalles are only slightly more expensive initially and upgradable at much less cost since all you need is a pair of downtube levers.

The Tiagra and Ultegra levers I mentioned are both 10 speed.  As to whether the Ultegra are left over, not sure.  I do not know how Shimano runs its factories.  Once Shimano changed to 11 speed on Ultegra, did they immediately stop making all 10 speed levers forever?  Or did they make 10 and 11 speed Ultegra levers for years side by side?  I'd guess the last.  Shimano continued to make the old style for years after shifting to the new style to keep stores and shops supplied with parts to fix older bikes.  Its probably not a black and white changeover going from 10 speed to 11 speed levers.

As for upgradability, does anyone make indexed downtube shift levers for 9, 10, 11 speed gear systems?  I looked on the Shimano website and saw zero downtube levers of any kind.  I see MicroShift does make downtube levers for 9 and 10.  http://www.microshift.com.tw/road_Shifters.html

69
Gear Talk / Re: Salsa Marrakesh
« on: January 05, 2016, 01:58:41 pm »
2) 10 speed road shifters do not work with  9 speed mountain bike derailleurs--mountain bike shifting over shifts and settles into position and road shifting moves exactly where it wants to go and demands that everything else follow along.
3) 10 speed chains want 10 speed jockey wheels.

I disagree.  I use 10 speed Shimano 105 triple STI shifters on one bike.  Bike has a 9 speed Shimano Deore mountain bike rear derailleur.  11-32 10 speed cassette.  Perfect shifting.

70
General Discussion / Re: Down Tube Shifters
« on: January 05, 2016, 01:51:29 pm »
I used brifters, both Shimano and Campy, for many years in 7,8,9 and 10-speed form and while I loved the convenience I wasn't thrilled with the expense or perceived fragility.

"Perceived fragility"?  Perception.  The vast majority of the world thinks a belief, a perception, is a fact.  They are not the same.

The Gevenalle shifters you speak so highly of cost $199-$219 on their website.  Ribble Cycles has Tiagra 10 speed triple STI levers for $125, and Ultegra for $185.  Why would someone choose to buy these other Gevenalle shifters for more money instead of the proven original Shimano shifters for less money?

71
General Discussion / Re: Down Tube Shifters
« on: January 05, 2016, 01:25:05 pm »
You see, I am not sure exactly what it takes to build up a bike as I have never done it.  I absolutely will never know if I do not try.

You seem to be a bit confused with this idea of building up a bike from scratch and buying a complete bike from a store.  They are not really mutually exclusive.  I and my friends have bought complete bikes from the store but do all of the mechanical work on the bikes.  Lubing, adjusting, tuning, tearing down and rebuilding are the exact same as building a bike up from scratch.  In the winter when you tear apart your store bought bike down to frame and all parts and then rebuild it, you are doing the exact same thing as building it up from scratch.  About the only difference is not being able to pick out every single part if you buy it from the store complete.  Building it up from scratch when new or overhauling a store bought complete bike a year later requires about the same tools and knowledge and techniques.  As an example, Surly/QBP sells the Long Haul Trucker as a frame or as a complete bike you buy at the local bike shop.  Assuming you have some intelligence when picking parts and assembling it, your frame and parts build will be very similar to a store bought LHT bike.  And if you do all your own bike mechanic work, which I recommend, then in 10 years the frame built bike will have one extra assembly/disassembly by you than the store bought bike.  Lets say you rebuild your bike once every two years.  You will have 5 builds on your scratch bike and just 4 builds on your store bought bike.  Not much difference.

72
Gear Talk / Re: Salsa Marrakesh
« on: January 04, 2016, 01:40:18 pm »
I don't recall suggesting anyone use 11 speed cassettes on a loaded touring bike.  Did you suggest this?

You stated, "And 11 is the new norm now days." in saying Salsa Marrakesh's components, a touring bike, are behind the times.

Yes, 11 speed is used by Shimano Dura Ace, Ultegra, and 105.  SRAM Red, Force, Rival are 11 speed.  Campagnolo Super, Record, Chorus, Athena are 11 speed.  Shimano mountain XTR, XT, Saint are 11 speed.  Its been 3-4-5 years since 11 speed replaced 10 speed at the upper and middle level of bikes.  11 speed is the new norm for upper bikes.  But 10 speed is still common on bikes sold in shops and the internet.  Its still very easy to get 10 speed parts at all levels, high and low.

But the Salsa Marrakesh uses 9 speed parts.  Its been 10 years since 9 speed was the top.  9 speed is not the prior year model/last year's model.  9 speed is two models ago.  Its been replaced twice already.  It fits my definition of behind the times for bicycles.

Paddleboy17 does present a good reason for why touring bikes remain with 9 speed.  The incompatibility between mountain and road groups.  And the fact touring bikes take parts from both the road and mountain world and try to make them interact on a bike.

73
Gear Talk / Re: Salsa Marrakesh
« on: January 03, 2016, 09:53:13 pm »
Looks very similar to Trek 520, Surly Long Haul, REI Randonee.  Steel frame, fork, bar end shifters, triple crank, derailleurs, braze ons, etc.  Priced about the same at $1600.  Odd that Salsa chose 9 speed instead of 10 speed.  Don't see any good reason to go into the past for parts.  10 speed has been the normal for road and mountain bikes for a decade or more.  And 11 is the new norm now days.  Why intentionally choose parts that are 10-15 years past their prime?

I have not heard of any 11 speed bicycles designed for fully loaded touring. 10 speed has not been the normal for touring bicycles "for a decade or more". I have a 2014 Trek 520, 9 speed. Prefer 10 speeds for a  touring bike if you wish, but I would not say buying a 9 speed touring bike is choosing "parts that are 10-15 years past their prime". This organization's  magazine recently featured a custom touring bike that cost nearly $9000, 8 speed. I questioned that, did you? The editor didn't answer the question.

I don't recall suggesting anyone use 11 speed cassettes on a loaded touring bike.  Did you suggest this?  But all the top road and mountain bike groups use 11 speed cassettes now.  Dura Ace 10 speed was introduced in 2003-4, Ultegra 10 speed was 2005, Shimano 105 10 speed was 2007, Tiagra became 10 speed in 2012.  Not sure on the mountain bike groups but I would think they became 10 speed 1 or 2 years after the road groups.  So it has been a decade of 10 speed mountain bike groups from Shimano.  Guessing SRAM was very similar.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shimano

The current Trek 520 still has 9 speed cassette.  Not sure why Trek is choosing to sell bikes with outdated parts.  I suppose a bike equipped with out of date parts appeals to the buyers of loaded touring bikes.  Trek's 720 and 920 sort of touring bikes have 11 and 10 speed cassettes.

I do not recall the bike offered by Adventure Cycling.  But if it had an 8 speed gearing system, I would wonder what cave the designers were living in for the past couple decades.

74
General Discussion / Re: Down Tube Shifters
« on: December 31, 2015, 01:55:34 pm »
I have a Surly LHT, that I converting to down tube shifters,  I raced and rode with the down tube shifters in the 70s and 80s, and felt I had a better connection with the whole shifting process.

Curious.  Have you ever used friction downtube shifters with a 9 speed cassette?  I'll assume you are using a 9 speed cassette since its sort of old and nostalgic.  Guessing you used downtube shifters in the 70s and 80s with 5 or even 6 speed freewheels.  6 speed was the big thing in the first half of the 80s.

75
General Discussion / Re: Down Tube Shifters
« on: December 31, 2015, 11:24:47 am »
In about 1991-1992 roughly, Campagnolo and Shimano came out with the shift lever/brake lever systems we use today.  Pros were the first to use them of course.  But the rest of the bicycle world picked them up fairly quickly.  The clipless pedal came on the scene a couple years before Ergo/STI.  Clipless pedals were also picked up by the rest of the cycling world pretty quickly.  I used clipless Time road pedals on a loaded tour of Europe in 1992.  Used bar end shifters back then.  Anyway, downtube shifters died out pretty quickly after the advent of Ergo/STI in the early 1990s.  It still existed but many or most new bikes sold, especially more expensive ones, had the Ergo/STI shifters.  Bike equipment makers are in business to make money.  If they invent a new way to do something, they want to sell it to everyone and make profits.  Staying with the old ways does not help them.

Are people still using downtube shifters?  Not really.  Every now and then you may see a bicyclist using them.  But he will probably be over 60 years old riding a bike that is 40 years old and has nostalgia for the past.  Its kind of like asking if someone drives a manually shifting car.  About 10-15-20 years ago they were sort of common.  But now days you have to specially order a manual transmission car.  Go to a car lot and ask to see a manual Honda Civic or Toyota Corolla, two small, efficient, light cars that usually had manuals a long time ago.  Not sure you will find any on lots now.

A detriment to downtube shifters is they were almost always friction.  You manually moved the levers so far to shift either the front or rear.  You had to know how much to move the lever for each shift.  Feeling your way.  Or get scraping and rattling of the gears.  Click shifting, indexed, downtube shifters were only around for a couple years before the advent of Ergo/STI brake-shift levers.  Click shifting on downtube shifters was fairly good.  You just moved the lever until you heard or felt the click.  Perfect shifting, sort of.  And in downtube shifter heyday, there were only 5 cogs on the freewheel on a 120mm spaced rear hub.  Easier to manually friction shift when there are only 5 cogs.  Big and little are easy to find since you just move the lever all the way forward or back.  It was just the middle three cogs you had to "find" with the lever.  Somewhat easy.  When you get 6 or 7 or 8 or 9 cogs then its even harder to find each cog manually.

Unless you want to build a retro, old style bike and relive the glory years of Eddy Merckx, its best to avoid them.  Or maybe if you want to salvage parts from bikes you find real cheap at yard sales and live in a flat part of the world.  Downtube shifters work OK if you rarely shift your bike.  I frequently go on 50-60 mile rides and might shift 5 times total.  Downtube shifters would work well for me.  I also ride a single speed bike on those same rides and never shift at all.  I might choose single speed over downtube.

I also think the old time racing bikes of the 50s-60s-70s look good with downtube shifters.  Better looking than almost all the current bikes.  But not better functioning.  The only bikes you will see with them are extremely cheap or extremely old bikes.

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