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Messages - DaveB

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General Discussion / Re: northern tier - how to start in bar harbor
« on: October 13, 2014, 09:04:11 am »
PPS: As far as I know people usually dont have jetlag going from Europe to USA ... only the other way around. I for instance started biking right away and did not need time to adjust.
Don't count on this.  Europe to the USA makes for a loooong day. If your flight leaves Europe at a typical 11:00AM CET, it will arrive at most East coast USA airports about 1:00 PM EST (8 hour flight  minus 6 hours time difference) so your day will be long and you will be ready for bed about normal dinner time here.  It's not necessarily a major problem but you will most likely take a couple of days to adjust.

Gear Talk / Re: Looking for a good touring shoe.
« on: October 12, 2014, 10:39:44 am »
  I have found that bike shoes are like running shoes in that, if I have the shoe that fits me properly, they are comfortable from the start.  If they weren't I'd keep shopping for something else that was.
I agree and i've found the same thing.  Modern running and biking shoes with synthetic uppers and soles don't "break in" and mold to fit your foot the way leather shoes do (did?).  If they aren't comfortable right from the start they won't be later either.   

Gear Talk / Re: Looking for a good touring shoe.
« on: October 11, 2014, 09:47:28 am »
I use Shimano Deore XT MTB pedals (PD-M780) on my road bikes along with Shimano "Touring" shoes ( mine are the older SH-T090. The current version is SH-RT82).   

The pedals are double sided and reasonably light at 340 gms/pair.   The shoes take the standard recessed Shimano SPD cleat but have flat soles without the typical MTB lugs and allow comfortable walking but are stiff enough for good pedaling efficiency.   Shimano also make a couple of "Trekking" shoes that are more conventionally styled but also take SPD cleats.

General Discussion / Re: northern tier - how to start in bar harbor
« on: October 08, 2014, 09:34:03 am »
If you do decide to rent a one-way car be sure to check with the rental company about drop-off charges as these can be very high.  Contact several rental agencies to find the best deal. 

Several years ago we rented a car in San Francisco and dropped it off in Seattle.  Before the trip I contacted a bunch of rental companies and got quotes varying from; "we don't rent one-way" to a $400 drop-off charge to no drop-off charge at all.  Guess which car we rented? So be sure what you are getting before you rent.

General Discussion / Re: Handlebar Grips
« on: October 03, 2014, 12:07:17 pm »
I haven't dealt with Gripshifters in decades but are you sure the shifter part can't be loosened and moved inboard on the bars the needed amount?

Gear Talk / Re: Panniers vs. BOB?
« on: September 27, 2014, 06:43:38 pm »
It will be interesting to see how long this thread goes.  Panniers vs Trailer has the same potential for heated discussion and disagreement as Shimano vs Campy and "whats the best chain lube?" questions.

General Discussion / Re: Gear Calculator for Android
« on: September 25, 2014, 02:05:33 pm »
The calculator app should do the trick. Divide the ring teeth by the cog teeth and multiply by your wheel diameter.
That only gives one gear at a time.  The Sheldon Brown "app" gives the entire gear chart.

General Discussion / Re: Riding on the US Interstates
« on: September 24, 2014, 06:04:58 pm »
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.
That isn't limited to the Interstates and any road with a shoulder has debris and litter on it.  The auto traffic blows anything on the travel lane over to the shoulder.

General Discussion / Re: Riding on the US Interstates
« on: September 24, 2014, 09:17:57 am »
Don't forget that the higher the speed differential, the shorter the reaction time.  Even if you see it coming, in front or in the mirror, your ability to evade is reduced.  This one isn't a v-squared problem, but once you've used up your reaction time, what's left over to actually move is a lot less.
Yes, but it is extremely unlikely there will be any problem in front of you since there are no side roads, driveways or drivers coming the other direction turning left in front of you.  Also, from behind, everyone is going the same direction and has multiple lanes to do it in.   The major danger on Interstates is at the entrance/exit ramps and cyclists have to be very aware at these points.

As noted, I would not ride any Interstate through or near a large city, even it it was permitted, as the interchanges are much too close together.

General Discussion / Re: Handlebar Grips
« on: September 23, 2014, 09:37:03 am »
Along with what may be excessive weight on your hands, do you move your hands around while riding?  The major disadvantage of straight bars is that they offer only one hand position.  Adding barend extensions will give you an alternative hand position and avoid constant pressure in one place.  One reason drop bars are popular (beside aerodynamics) is the multiple hand positions they allow. 

General Discussion / Re: Nishki bikes
« on: September 18, 2014, 09:04:23 am »
Try the "Classic and Vintage" forum at  The posters there should be able to provide all of the details.

General Discussion / Re: Can scooters ride the routes?
« on: September 09, 2014, 10:17:12 am »
Motorized scooters come in a huge range of power and ability these days.  The slow, smoky two-stroke Vespas of the past have been replaced with similar, low power 4-stroke models with a top speed of maybe 35 - 40 mph up to 650cc 30+ HP models with top speeds near 100 mph.   "Slow" doesn't mean what it used to. 

General Discussion / Re: What is a century?
« on: September 08, 2014, 09:15:10 am »
I think the functional definition of a bicycle century is 100 miles in "one day", typically from morning until evening. Normally not a 24 hour day but you could claim you road a century even if it took the entire 24 hours. 

Gear Talk / Re: Straight up Noob bike/gear advice.
« on: September 04, 2014, 08:29:27 pm »
AWOL is the current line of Specialized adventure bicycles.
OK, thanks for the update.  I really don't follow the various manufacturer's product line and name changes from year to year so that's why the name was new to me. 

Gear Talk / Re: Straight up Noob bike/gear advice.
« on: September 04, 2014, 09:50:02 am »
I've never heard of "AWOL" bikes but you absolutely must buy a bike from a decent bike shop or REI, NOT from a department store or Xmart.  Trek, Specialized, Cannondale, Fuji, or other well established brands and REI's house brand should all be available in the type you need and be reliable.

As Pat recommended, go to a shop that will fit you properly and is willing to make changes to dial in the correct dimensions.  A touring or similar bike will be far more suitable than an ultralight carbon frame racing bike.

Finally, ride quite a bit before embarking on your trip.  You need to get used to hours in the saddle and to handle the bike.   

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