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Messages - jrswenberger

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General Discussion / ACA Leadership Training course
« on: February 05, 2012, 02:02:27 pm »
Hello All,
Anyone been through the Leadership Training course recently? I'll be in the May class in Denver and would love to hear your thoughts and opinions. I've taken a 3 week mountaineering-based outdoor educator course from NOLS and led multiple backpacking and snow camping trip for a local college. I've also bike toured solo and with my wife in the US and internationally.

I'm expecting the course info to be delivered sometime in March so I'm just looking to hear from some of you that have previously been through the class.


General Discussion / Re: Weather Extremes
« on: February 05, 2012, 01:54:34 pm »
The more people I talk to and "chat" with online the more confused I am on which direction to go. Seems there are good and bad to both.
From a logistics point of view it would be easier to start from the West coast because I am in Idaho and it would be easy to begin from Oregon or Washington.

What to do  :-\

I think you've just answered the question...

Gear Talk / Re: removing tabs on fork
« on: January 29, 2012, 10:20:15 pm »
They are nicknamed "lawyer tabs" for a reason.  If you inow how to mount a tire, you don't need em.

I perfer "lawyer lips" myself....  ;)

Gear Talk / Re: Alcohol Stoves
« on: January 24, 2012, 11:03:25 pm »
We'll be touring Wales for 2+ weeks this summer and I'd like to use my Trangia for the two of us. Is alcohol fuel readily available? What about in more remote locations? I've used Whisperlites since they first came out and would love to quiet meal times down.  ;)


Gear Talk / Schwalbe Supreme sizes
« on: January 04, 2012, 12:49:19 am »
Anyone used either the 700x32 or 35 Supremes? Have you actually measured the width when mounted? How wide are they when fully inflated?


Routes / Wales July 2012
« on: November 28, 2011, 10:21:47 pm »
My wife and I will be touring Wales for 2+ weeks prior to the Olympics next summer. We plan to criss-cross the country to cover as much as we can in that time. As long as we make it to Wembley for the football finals, we'll ride as much as we can.

Anyone interested in sharing their experiences touring Wales?


Gear Talk / Re: Brooks saddle break in period
« on: October 20, 2009, 11:53:58 pm »
I read an article somewhere about how to artificially break in a Brooks saddle in a couple of weeks. The process required oil, a heat lamp, rubbing, and a baseball bat. I think weight is applied also. It simulates body warmth and useage. I guess it works. It does not require actual use of the saddle on the bike.

I'd be interested in hearing how this is supposed to work, unless your butt is shaped like a baseball bat.  :-\  The purpose behind saddle break-in is to mold the saddle to match your specific anatomical structures. Heating and oiling the leather alone only soften the leather. It takes specific pressure from your anatomy to make that mold.

As a general rule, the goal for any bike fit issue is to match the bike to the body, as best you can. Trying to change your body to match an improperly fitted bike or components may work in the short term, but will likely lead to discomfort and possible injuries down the to speak. This is typically an issue of saving a few bucks now versus getting things right the first time.


General Discussion / Re: Numb Feet
« on: July 04, 2009, 01:08:39 pm »
> I really don't see how adapting a racing equipment mentality fixes problems of touring cyclists. <

I started  using clipless on my mountain bike and found a huge contribution to my climbing power and control over the bike. On my recumbent, the pull lets me climb with less fatigue and to put on short bursts on speed. Clipless pedals have much more going for them besides adding an upstroke but that's fodder for another thread. Physiologically, I don't see that a pull stroke changes circulation issues either. I hope the OP comes back and tells how a visit to the bike shop changed his situation. Additional anecdotal reflectgion on numb or tingley toes will contribute to the discussion.

david boise ID

I am actually a firm believer in using clipless pedal systems. Over the years, I've used most of the various versions out there. I wouldn't even think about riding off-road without my old Shimano 737s and the Look style is my all-time favorite when road riding. But for touring and commuting, I really enjoy the freedom to move my feet around and adjust the pressure points as I need. It also helps with the spontaneous situations that, for me anyway, are the highlights of being on the open road.

As I've never had a numbness or tingling problem while cycling, I really can't comment about specific remedies. I'd bet that a majority of touring cyclists do use a clipless system because they prefer this rigid connection. Personally, I've found this supposed benefit to be more marketing hype than actual need on a tour.

For some perspective, my first bike in the mid-60's was a Schwinn Sting Ray with a big banana seat and sissy bar on the back. I remember riding that thing everywhere, before it was stolen  :(, and returning to that kind of unclipped freedom has brought back a huge sense of freedom and joy to my riding.

Be safe and enjoy your rides,

General Discussion / Re: Touring
« on: July 03, 2009, 08:42:20 pm »
I have not toured but want to get input from you who have about the feasibility of starting a fully loaded tour of the southern tier, from west to east, on Dec 1. 

Without addressing the specifics of your intended route or the timing you are thinking of, I would have you think about whether or not having your first tour being a fully loaded, cross country one is appropriate for you.  :-\ 

Does your cycling experience support this committment?
How familiar are you with your bike and gear?
How capable are you with repairs?
What is your fitness level?

This isn't meant as a critisism or to deter you. I only want you to look at your abilities and preparation honestly. I love a tour with lots of unknowns, as long as they relate to the journey, not me, my abilities or my gear.

Good luck and I hope to see you out there sometime,

General Discussion / Re: Numb Feet
« on: July 03, 2009, 08:35:14 pm »
I think you might be better served by going to clipless pedals.  On your down stroke, you will force your feet into the toe box.  Do this long enough, and you will interfere with blood flow and get numbness.  With clipless pedals, you can pull up, and restore circulation to your feet.  I have no idea how to accomplish that with platform pedals and toe clips

Since most of us mere mortals don't really "pull up" as our pedals are coming back up, but rather just unweight them, what is different between releasing pressure with your foot trapped on the pedal vs releasing pressure with your foot free to move about as you need to. I really don't see how adapting a racing equipment mentality fixes problems of touring cyclists.


Gear Talk / Re: Pedal Suggestions for Soft Soled Shoes?
« on: July 03, 2009, 08:25:55 pm »
I've used everything from toe clips/straps, just about all the different clip-in systems, powergrips and nothing at all. I remember switching over to Look pedals when they came out (still my favorite road system).

With that being said, over the past 10 years, I've commuted to work and toured the US, Germany and Denmark with nothing more than running shoes and wide BMX/trick style platform pedals with little nubs for grip. I look for an inexpensive, well-constructed (metal) pedal, repack with better quality bearings and forget about all the hype. With this style of pedal, there is plenty of support for your foot, you have the freedom to make slight alterations in foot postion and you can wear whatever shoe you are comfortable in. I met many touring in Croc type "shoes" on my last trip. If you want a bit more support, powergrips are easy to use and stay out of the way when not in use.

I'm not against toe clips or clipless systems on or off-road. In fact, only my touring bike doesn't have them. However, they are NOT the solution to every cycling situation.


General Discussion / Independent fundraising tour 2010
« on: November 29, 2008, 02:58:47 pm »
Hello Everyone,
My wife and I are just starting to plan for a cross country tour in mid-2010. While riding, we'd like to also raise money for diabetes awareness and research. We have domestic and international touring experience. I even worked as a bike mechanic for nearly 5 years.

I'm a registered nurse working as a pediatric diabetes educator and my wife is a college professor with her doctorate in public health, preventive care. Other than working to partner with the ADA and JDRF, any suggestions on fundraising. Neither of us has done any fundraising in the past.

Thanks for any pointers or suggestions,

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