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Messages - DaveB

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General Discussion / Re: Bar end shifters
« on: March 02, 2010, 10:52:20 pm »
I've ridden with both types and the convenience and accessibility of STI/Ergo integrated "brifters" is so much better than barends that there is no comparison in my experience.  The hillier the terrain, the bigger the advantage brifters have.  You can shift brifters while standing and barends are nearly impossible to reach from that position.

Barends are less likely to give mechanical problems.  They aren't immune and brifters have gotten very reliable over the past few years but barends do have friction as a fall back option.  They are also MUCH cheaper so manufacturers will use them to reduce costs if possible.

BTW, there is one other option; Kelly Take Offs.  These are brackets that fasten under standard brake levers and mount downtube shifters just inboard of the brake levers.  They put the levers in reach of your thumbs while riding on the hoods and are nearly (but not quite) as convenient as brifters.  Since downtube levers all have a friction option, you have that fall-back too. They sell for $50 to $70 and use any model or "speed" downtube shifters so the entire thing is much less than any brifter.   Here is a reference:

I have a set of Take Offs on one bike and I'm quire fond of them  They are far better than barend or regular downtube shifters at a fraction the cost of brifters.

General Discussion / Re: Roadside repair question...
« on: March 02, 2010, 10:35:38 pm »
Harris Cyclery sells a portable mini-lockring tool that does what you want, it allows you to remove the lockring while the wheel is on the bike with no other tool.  Here is the URL reference:

Here is a reference for a DIY tool that does the same thing but, read the caveats before using it.  Used incorrectly or if the lockring is very tight it can damage your frame.

If your choices are either Charlston or Savannah, then Charleston is the hands-down winner. 

Gear Talk / Re: 10 speed vs 9 speed for touring
« on: January 30, 2010, 09:59:25 am »
FWIW, I understand Shimano is going to 10-speed for their MTB groups for 2011.

General Discussion / Re: Florida
« on: January 30, 2010, 09:53:18 am »
To those of you who have provided usefull information, I thank you. I have used some of that information and advice. I am sure this trip is going better and has been safer. Thanks to you. I pay for internet usage by the minute and can not afford towaste my time. To those of you who have chose to waste my time having your own irrellevent conversation, It is easy to see that your main concern is your ranking based on how many posts you have on this site. I have it ironic that while you discuss how rude some motorists are you do not see how rude you are being. You should be more understanding and forgiving of those motorists, perhaps they are no more ignorant of their lack of consideration than you are of your own. Happy Riding.  PEACE-OUT
I assume your future question will not be answered since we may inadvertently waste your time with irrelevant digressions.   Apparently you aren't familiar with the the term "thread drift". 

Ignorant motorists, whether overtly hostile or just inconsiderate, can kill you on a bike.  I don't think "understanding" is called for. 

General Discussion / Re: Florida Ride
« on: January 30, 2010, 09:47:09 am »
pretty strict! ???
Pretty common.  Most state vehicle codes say pretty much the same thing.

General Discussion / Re: Florida
« on: January 21, 2010, 10:02:56 pm »
The FL Department of Tourism has "Bicycle Route" maps for various areas in the state.  I've seen them in the Florida Visitors Center on I-95 as soon as you enter the state and I'm sure other places have them or you can get copies from the Tourist Bureau by phone or e-mail.

General Discussion / Re: BRAN - Bike Ride Across Nebraska
« on: January 21, 2010, 09:56:50 pm »
I rode RAGBRAI once in 1986 and it was a BLAST!!!!  I'd go back in a minute if the logistics weren't so difficult.  RAGBRAI is point-to-point so, at one end of the week or the other, you are 300 miles from your car.  You need to be with a group of some sort to arrange transportation to the start or back to the start at the end of the week.  Also, getting an entry is by lottery unless you are a member of an Iowa bike club or are willing to be a "pirate".  There are lots of those too.   A great ride and an unforgettable social experience if you can arrange it.

I have ridden 18 of Ohio's GOBA's.  This is a loop ride so the start and finish are at the same location which is a huge convenience.  That, and the fact I live in Western PA, are big factors in my riding it so often.  It's between RAGBRAI and BRAN in size with about 2700 - 3000 riders and more family oriented than either.  The terrain varies from dead flat to VERY hilly depending on which part of the state the organizers choose for any given year.  There are now two optional days and the weekly distance varies from  about 250 to 420 miles depending on whether you ride the options.   The century day is always optional. 

As to 4:00 AM zippers, every ride I've ever been on has them.  There are those who are so eager to ride or fear they are so slow that they will start while it's still dark.   Then there are the people who go to the Porta-Potties at 2:00 AM and let the door SLAM when they leave. Arrrrgh!

Gear Talk / Re: Touring (Ageing?) Compromises
« on: January 05, 2010, 09:20:04 am »
I'm 67 and as I get older, I want a lighter bike, not a heavier one.  I have a Litespeed Ti road bike I use for both my daily and group rides, including supported tours.  For credit card touring I have a Co-Motion solo road bike that I use only because it had eyelets for mounting a rack.

Nothing on these bikes is "stupid light" and the wheels are 32H. 3X but I don't see any reason to handicap my self with extra weight or rolling and aero resistance that only detract from the ride. 

As always, no matter what your age, there will be riders who are faster and riders who are slower than you.

General Discussion / Re: Trans Am Solo ride - Safety issue?
« on: January 05, 2010, 09:11:37 am »
Well, one difference is that we ride and drive on the right and it will take you a bit of time to learn to look in the proper direction at intersections.   If you have a mirror on your bike you will want to move it to the left side.  I've driven and biked enough in the UK to realize it takes real concentration for the first couple of days. 

Also, almost all of our intersections are 90° crossings and roundabouts are extremely rare so that will be different too.   

General Discussion / Re: What's up with the smileys?
« on: January 05, 2010, 09:02:29 am »
It's been like that since this forum changed it's format a while ago.

General Discussion / Re: Aerospoke wheelset VS 36H Wheelset
« on: January 05, 2010, 09:01:25 am »
An aero wheelset is designed for one thing: to go fast.  I would think it would be unreliable for a Clydesdale class rider just to go around the block.  Skip the aero or radial laced wheel sets and get a traditional wheel set.
Aerospoke wheels are not the low spoke count deep rim wheels typically used for time trials and triathalons that you are picturing.  They are carbon composit wheels molded all in one piece with 5 wide carbon "spokes".  Look here for the details:

That said, while they may be quite strong, failure of any kind trashes them.  They are either perfect or useless since they are not field repairable.  Also, I have heard nearly nothing about them, either good or bad, on several mechanics forums so they are not very popular and there may be a fundamental reason for that.  Failure prone?  Weight?  I don't know.

As the OP noted, a 36H, 3X wheel with a moderately deep profile rim would be very strong and still field repairable by any shop.  Aerodynamics and speed are obviously not an issue for a 265 pound rider pulling a BOB.

General Discussion / Re: Your first long distance tour...
« on: January 03, 2010, 11:10:59 am »
My first "Long Tour" was TOSRV in 1986, a fully supported annual ride (~5000 participants at the time) that requires two century days in a row but on an unloaded bike.   

I was a relatively new rider and my longest ride at that time was 33 miles so I was apprehensive since I would be riding in "terra incognito" even before the lunch stop.

I was elated at the end of the first day, having completed my first ever century and even happier at the end of the second day.  I've been back 18 times since. 

General Discussion / Re: How many days for a good ride
« on: December 29, 2009, 11:58:07 am »
I have done a 300 mile ride 10 times and enjoy doing century rides whenever I can.  I've done more than 100 miles in a day several times.  I plan a training program that will be 400-500 miles/week in preparation.
OK, I realize mine wasn't an exact answer to your original question but you didn't exactly answer mine either. 

Were those 300 mile rides all in one day or over several days?  Were those centuries isolated rides or did you do a series of them on consecutive days?  Were any of them on a bike burdened with a touring load?

For example, I've done twenty 350 - 500 mile rides but they took 5 days to a week each.  I've ridden 75 centuries but they were, at the most, two centuries on two consecutive days.   Given all of that, I still wouldn't plan on 30 centuries in a row on a loaded bike.

I'm not "attacking" your plans but I am asking you to realize the implications of what you are asking.   

General Discussion / Re: Biker vs World
« on: December 29, 2009, 11:45:44 am »
I would slow down or stop beside them, open the car window and ask if they need assistance. The next step is up to them.

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