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Messages - PeteJack

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Gear Talk / Re: clipless shoes
« on: May 18, 2011, 04:46:49 pm »
One thing I promise: you will fall off at least once when you start using clipless pedals. The paralyzed feelling when you are stationary and can't unclip is long remembered. However I also promise that once you have got the hang of them you will wonder how anybody manages to ride without them.

A couple of things I suggest to new users 1) find a Y or similar that has stationary bikes and get some practice with clipless pedals on one of them. A spinning class is not a bad idea so you can learn to pull up on the backstroke and put a lot more power into your pedaling. A major benefit of clipless. 2) the first time you ride a real bike with them do it on grass. There's nothing worse than keeling over at a set of traffic lights. Believe me I've seen it done.

that's why some people will circle the parking lot at the end of a century
One day on the Southern Tier we rolled into Blythe and my computer read 99.7 miles. For about a microsecond I thought about riding round the parking lot to make it 100, then sense prevailed, I opted for shower and food. Come to think of it I didn't even ask my pal what his computer read.

Depends how much precision you need. I used to measure the circumference of the tire but I've stopped bothering. the numbers that come with the instructions for your computer are quite accurate. On club rides of 30 -40 miles my mileage is rarely more than 0.2 miles different from everyone else's, that's 0.7%, supposing they are right and I'm not. It's plenty accurate for finding a turn on an ACA map (Mind you, ACA maps are usually pretty good but sometimes those distances are way off, so don't stake your life on it no matter how accurate your computer is) On a 1000 mile trip you may be off by +/- 1 mile, does it really matter?

Gear Talk / Re: lightweight, waterproof gloves
« on: May 15, 2011, 06:57:09 pm »
Pearl Izumi made a lightweight unlined glove that you can slip on over your fingerless gloves. I like them a lot for end of season riding because they take up very little room and are just the thing if caught in the rain. They are not waterproof but do keep the wind off and reduce evaporative cooling. Unfortunately mine are worn out and they are no longer available. Does anyone know where I can get something like this

Gear Talk / Re: Gear Chainring
« on: May 15, 2011, 03:57:57 pm »
I can only go by personal experience: if you are interested in getting up steep hills without walking get a small granny. It's not like it would cost you an arm and a leg to try one out which beats theorizing about gear inches, mine cost $25. Just ask your LBS if the ring you want to try will work with your derailer. Now if you have to use a different derailer...

Gear Talk / Re: Gear Chainring
« on: May 15, 2011, 02:42:43 pm »
I can't get into gear inches and all that. They never mean anything to me. Here's my thought: on my Trek520 I have 51-38-24 and 11-32. My big front ring, about the same as yours, is comfortable on the flat. I used to have a 28 granny but I found it too big for loaded climbing so I swapped it for a 24 the smallest my derailer would take. It's not often you need it but when you do it's much appreciated. I suggest you try a smaller granny if your big ring is OK on the flat. It will be ludicrous on the flat or even slight gradients, the old pedaling air syndrome, but when you need it you'll both be so grateful it's there. It can be the difference between riding and pushing.

Gear Talk / Re: Gear Chainring
« on: May 13, 2011, 09:12:07 pm »
Having the chain hang loose on the bottom does not cause any concern.

You are probably right, although you can get the chain rubbing on itself as someone noted. Someone mentioned how loose my chain appeared to be when I was using the small ring so I took a link out. Now I can't use the big big combination because the chain's too short. I know you aren't supposed to use this combination either but I find you are much more likely to do this by accident (like when you turn a corner and find a surprise hill) than use the small-small combination by accident. I'll fix it next time I change the chain. FWIW Here's Sheldon on chain length

General Discussion / Re: Camelbak / Water Bladder
« on: May 09, 2011, 11:08:48 am »
Not even bottles are perfect. Riding across the North Cascades I dropped one and it rolled downhill right down the middle of a very busy two lane road. It was quite exciting dodging cars and chasing my bottle.

Gear Talk / Re: Gear Chainring
« on: May 09, 2011, 12:59:15 am »
Be careful. If you have too big a difference between the big ring and the granny; if the chain is short enough for the granny gear it may be too short for the big ring. If you see what I mean. I

Gear Talk / Re: Any advantage of using 4 vs 2 panniers?
« on: April 19, 2011, 08:55:03 pm »
I agree with all of the above and will add that front panniers can give you a more comfortable, consequently less fatiguing, ride. It's surprising how they damp down vibration in your bars.

Gear Talk / Re: BOB skewers--do they break?
« on: April 19, 2011, 08:51:00 pm »
Don't know about skewers but you may want to put a Mr Tuffy in the BOB tire. Guy I did the Transam with kept getting flats until I gave him a Mr Tuffy I'd brought just in case. I think but don't know that the small tires they use are made for kids bikes and not very puncture resistant.

General Discussion / Re: Medication
« on: April 14, 2011, 12:34:23 pm »
Be aware that childproof caps (the default for my pharmacy service) come off very easily while traveling. It's counter intuitive but I found this out before I retired when I flew a lot. If they come off in airline baggage they will surely come off rattling around in a pannier or bar bag. (now somebody will tell me it's all to do with pressurization I suppose) because of this I use little bottles with screw tops from REI. If you are going on a long tour it's not a bad idea to get an extra prescription from your doc and keep it separate from the medication. Make sure it's less than a year old. I found out about this last the hard way. After many phone calls I ended up having to pay $7.50 for one pill.

General Discussion / Re: Possible cause of crashes?
« on: April 14, 2011, 11:37:40 am »
Yes the article is infuriatingly vague. I do know that I've stopped at the top of a hard climb to have drink and take in the view and felt decidedly woozy. Which leads me to think it's immediately after stopping that this occurs.I don't know if this was the same phenomenon. If it this does happen I suspect it will be like falling asleep while driving, very hard to be sure about.  I also suspect that men are much less likely than women to admit to feeling faint. A physician acquaintance of mine looked into the research, apparently it was people doing research on astronauts who came up with it. Consequently said physician poopooed my suggestion but nowhere in the article does it mention astronauts, weightlessness, space or any such. The article does go on about technical stuff beyond my ken. Any bofffins out there got any input?

Well it was just a thought. And if we didn't have thoughts where would we be?  Mind you, all I felt on getting to the summit of Hoosier Pass was relief and I didn't see any other cyclists falling over either. Hummm guess I'll have to try to contact the guy for more details. If I do find out more I'll let you know. But don't hold your breath (you might faint)

General Discussion / Re: Possible cause of crashes?
« on: April 14, 2011, 12:13:14 am »
John Nelson. Hard to investigate. One time was in the Italian Alps the other in North Wales. Of course there was all kinds of theorizing at the time but no conclusions. You've got a good point about not remembering. Have you read he article? It seems that fainting after strenuous exercise is a known phenomenon even with "highly trained athletes". If no one want to think about it, so be it.

General Discussion / Re: Possible cause of crashes?
« on: April 13, 2011, 07:46:34 pm »
As a 200+ pound rider, I have turned myself inside out on long hard climbs.  I have never felt anything but wonderful on the way down the other side!  I have low blood pressure and sometimes black out just from standing up quickly; never experienced any thing like than in many miles of suffering on the bike.  Just my experience...

Thanks for a thoughtful reply. What got me going on this was first my friend who died who was seen standing at the top of a rock climb having successfully completed it; next thing anybody knew he'd fallen. This guy was a fit, apparently healthy, experienced climber.  The reason I got to thinking about cycling is that I have a friend who has twice been hospitalized after crashing on downhills. Neither time can he recollect how it happened. If that article is to be believed it can happen to the fittest among us...

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