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Messages - DaveB

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Gear Talk / Another yes no question
« on: May 12, 2006, 07:35:36 pm »
Be easier to answer if you clarified the question.  Aero bars for what use?

Loaded touring?
Light touring?
Credit card touring?
Mountains and hills forever?
Flat as a lake but windy?

Thus, the answer is yes and no depending on what the question really is.

Gear Talk / Best Functional Helmet
« on: June 08, 2006, 12:42:01 pm »
Wanderingwheel negated your argument that hockey helmets are designed as one-shot deals like bike helmets so that's done.

Climbing helmets aren't designed to save you in a fall, they are designed to keep falling rocks and other debris from beaning you.  They are more like industrial hardhats than crash helmets.

Gear Talk / Best Functional Helmet
« on: May 27, 2006, 04:51:50 pm »
But what about the cyclist who wants a better helmet?  What about the manufacturer that would prefer putting the $180 of "value added" into better engineering and better materials

What kind of "value added" features do you want? You give no specifics.  There are lots of expensive helmets with better graphics, better ventilation, more sophisticated suspensions, etc. but other than style and possibly a small increase in comfort what value do they bring?    

As to exceeding the CPSC safety standards, if a manufacturer found materials that would provide better protection without a major weight gain they would certainly do it as it would be a major sales advantage. Bike helmets have significantly improved in impact protection and reduced weight over the years so there must be an incentive to do so over and above legislative coercion.  

The threat of lawsuits from providing "too much safety" is a red herring.  Ever read the disclaimers in any helmet of any type sold for any purpose? They all say this helmet cannot protect you from all possible hazards.  That's their legal defense and I haven't heard of anyone successfully suing Bell.  

Gear Talk / Best Functional Helmet
« on: May 26, 2006, 10:44:53 am »
Bicycle helmets that meet CPSC standards all pass the same tests independent of cost.  A higher price buys better ventillation, more "style" and possibly better comfort but not more protection.  Buy what fits well.  

Multisport, hockey, football and climbing helmets are not made to the same impact standards as they are made to take multiple smaller "hits", not one big hit.

Weight is very much an issue.  Not that the weight has much to do with your total load but very much to do with the load on your neck so don't dismiss helmet weight as a non-issue.

Mototcyclists have a very different riding position than bicyclists so the weight factor is also different.  A full face motorcycle helmet would provide better protection but you would find it intolerable after a very short time.

BTW, I'm a member of the "Saved By The Bell" club having distroyed a Bell helmet in an accident.  I had a mild concussion that would have been anything but mild without the helmet.  On the basis of one data (datum?) point I'm a firm believer.

This message was edited by DaveB on 5-26-06 @ 6:47 AM

Gear Talk / Dream Bike for Touring
« on: May 05, 2006, 01:07:52 pm »
Not sure I would go for Shimano bar end shifters or Campagnolo Ergo.  I'm not sure mixing brands between wheels and shifters/derailleurs works as well as some claim.

If you use a J-Tek adapter you can mix-and-match these at will with good results.  The problems occur when riders try to mix component manufactures directly.  Sometimes it works well, sometimes not so well and often, not at all.  

Gear Talk / Which tires for touring?
« on: April 21, 2006, 07:08:51 pm »
As long as you are doing "fully supported" touring you are riding the same way you do at home or on your weekend rides.  You don't need a special bike or special equipment.

I've ridden a bunch of organized fully supported "tours" on my Litespeed Catalyst with 700x23 tires with no problems.  It's just like a training ride or a club ride except further from home.    

I've ridden several "credit card" tours on a Co-Motion Co-Pilot solo bike with 700x23 tires and had no problems with occasional gravel roads even carrying 20 pounds of gear.  

A fully loaded tour with 40 or more pounds of gear on front and rear panniers would be a different story but supported tours need little in the way of specific tour equipment.  

Gear Talk / Bike for Supported Touring
« on: March 17, 2006, 10:28:55 am »
A light touring or even a pure road bike will be plenty durable for unloaded touring or even credit card touring and will be more fun to ride than a heavy-duty loaded touring bike.  

Avoid low spoke count boutique wheels and your bike should be up to anything you will do.

Gear Talk / carbon seat post
« on: March 12, 2006, 10:15:19 am »
I'm not sure why anyone has a carbon seatpost on any type bike.  I hear lots of problems with slipping and inability to hold height adjustments.  They impress me as a solution looking for a problem.

Gear Talk / Zebrakenko Bike?
« on: March 07, 2006, 06:07:05 pm »
I never heard of it either but if it's cheap enough, you could buy it and become the forum's expert on the brand. :)

Gear Talk / birdy
« on: March 10, 2006, 10:58:59 pm »
I own both a Bike Friday with 20" wheels that cost a great deal less than the $3700,
You didn't buy it in Australia.  The OP lives there and has to pay Australian prices for his purchases.  

Gear Talk / birdy
« on: March 06, 2006, 05:54:07 pm »
My only problem with the 520 is the weight,I will probably put 700c wheels on the Cannondale f2000sl,this will be cheaper anyhow.

I'm not familiar with the Cannondale f2000sl but what size wheels does it come with?  You can't just put 700c wheels on a bike with "26" wheels(ISO 559)because the brakes (cantilever, caliper or V-brakes) won't line up with the rims.  

If it has disc brakes you could lace 700c rims to the existing hubs but that won't be cheap and you have to be sure the fork and frame clearances are sufficient.

I think you are making too much of an issue about the 520's weight.  If you don't need them, take off the racks and it will be at least a kilo lighter.

Gear Talk / Kick stands
« on: February 26, 2006, 01:29:06 pm »
No.  They have to be clamped to the frame behind the bottom bracket or to a chain stay.  They won't hurt a "water pipe" frame but I'd never fit one to a thin wall steel or any Al frame.

Otherwise, unnecesary weight, poor stability and useless if you have to lock the bike to any stationary object for security.  I never found anyplace without something to lean the bike against.

This message was edited by DaveB on 2-26-06 @ 9:29 AM

Gear Talk / Koga no customer service
« on: March 03, 2006, 12:46:04 pm »
I'd also advise not ordering a mail order bike from St. John Street Cycles since you really need to be your own mechanic on mail order bikes and parts.  

This is excellent advice and should be taken to heart by all riders. If you aren't a sufficiently skilled mechanic, buy your parts and bikes from a good local dealer or expect to pay a high premium for dealer service on parts you bought elsewhere.  

I read a number of Bike Mechanics Forums and it's appaling how many questions are posed like: "I just bought XYZ from E-bay.  How do I install it and how do I use it?"

The time to learn is BEFORE you buy, not after.

Gear Talk / Koga no customer service
« on: February 26, 2006, 01:21:17 pm »
I'm not familiaar with Koga bicycles but from your letter it seems to me your problems were primarily due to dealer incompetence.  The handlebar and rear wheel were not secure?  The chain jammed? These are dealer set up problems.  

The dealer is expected to go over the bike and adjust it. That's what they are there for and a reasonable level of competence and attention to detail are the least you should expect.  It sounds like you got neither.

Maybe Koga isn't a well made brand and you should replace it but the problems sound more dealer related at this point.  

Gear Talk / bike choice
« on: February 26, 2006, 01:25:17 pm »
Bike Friday's are very highly thought of here in the US.  They are pretty much a custom proposition and priced accordingly. My son-in-law has one and I've ridden it a bit.    

In general, they make great travel bikes but I don't think you'd want one as a daily rider.  

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