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Lets go ride bikes!
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ThunderPoit
Captain Potatoman
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Saint Paul
 
2007-04-29, 22:02

So who here bikes?
A few years ago, some idiots stole my cheap-o target schwinn right after I moved into my new apartment (nice housewarming gift) and I've been without a bike since. A few weeks ago, I decided that it had been to long and went to a local shop to get myself a nice new bike.
Heres what I came home with:



*catches self drooling over shiny-ness*
A 2007 Speicialized Crossroads Sport. I absolutely LOVE this bike! It rides so smooth and I don't get the numbness issue I had with my old bike (seat was not designed to be used sitting upright.)

The apartment I live in now has very close access to Minneapolis' bike trails, and I live very close to Lake Calhoun (clicky here for QTVR), which has a 3 mile trail around it.

I try to do at least one lap a few times a week, should be easier now that the weather has warmed up. And if I get bored with that, there are about 50-60 miles of bike trails in the area around the city, but not all of them have the smoothest trails.

I plan to do a lot of riding this summer and hope to get myself fit enough to try ridding to work at least a few times. I found out the trail that runs right behind my apartment building also runs extremely close to where I work, only a 9 mile ride (vs the 17 miles that I have to drive there.)

So does anyone else ride? Any tips or suggestions for a new rider?
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Majost
monkey with a tiny cymbal
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Lost
 
2007-04-29, 22:18

Quote:
Originally Posted by ThunderPoit View Post
So does anyone else ride? Any tips or suggestions for a new rider?
Goodness yes! I just got home from a 30 mile cruise around Chicago. It was a marvelous day, I love discovering different parts of the city on my bike. I bike into work most every day (4 miles each way) and am working towards 2000 miles on my bike odometer in one year.

I *really* wish my workplace had showers, though I just have to bring a change of clothes and try not to sweat too much. Riding on city streets really isn't bad, at least here in Chicago. You need to keep your wits about yourself, but that's half the fun From my perception of Minneapolis, I imagine cycling on the roads there should be nice.

I always make sure I have an extra tube in my backpack, as well as some basic tools (the right sized allan wrenches, etc). And a cell phone is essential. I used to go on 50 mile rides out in the countryside in Northern Indiana without a cell phone... nothing ever happened, but I can't imagine what I would have done had something happened 25 miles from home in the middle of nowhere. Yeesh!

Another tip: get some biking shorts! It took me *way* too long to discover that most people don't wear biking shorts for the streamlined spandex... it's for the padding! Grab a pair with regular shorts nylon outers if you don't want to have the super-sleek spandex look.

Heh, I keep editing this to add more tips. Get a bike computer. They're cheap and its fun to see how fast you're going, and handy for keeping time, too.

Oh, I ride an '80s Schwinn road bike. It's marvelous. I love it.

Last edited by Majost : 2007-04-29 at 22:22. Reason: Yet another tip.
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autodata
hustlin
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2007-04-29, 22:23

I've been biking just about everywhere (through rain, sleet or snow) for a little over 6 years. My current bikes are a Cannondale F400 and a hardtail Giant. My wife has a car, but I rarely use it.
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World Leader Pretend
Ruling teh World
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Boston, MA
 
2007-04-29, 22:24

I too just got back from riding around the Little Apple (in Kansas), although it got a little dark.

I ride a lot and I usually try to wear a helmet. Yes, it looks tacky but I can ride along with traffic much easier if I wear one for some reason (people don't swerve as much to pass you, etc).

Tonight I got hit by a bunch of bugs and flies when riding along the trails by the rivers. It is gross but luckily they weren't too bad.

I ride a Gary Fisher (Hoo Koo Ekoo) that I purchased from a neighbor in Colorado who ran a bike shop. It is really a nice bike that is good both on an off road.
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ThunderPoit
Captain Potatoman
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Saint Paul
 
2007-04-29, 22:24

Asside from the first warm weekend we had when I first got the bike and I took it on a 20 mile ride (my legs were rubber for 2 days) I haven't taken it on more than a lap or two around the lake, so I'm not more than 2 miles from home.

I plan to get a small pack for under my seat or one that rides above the rear tire to hold some tools and a spare tube. I also don't have a lock yet, but thats not too big of a deal right now as my bike is in my closet.

I also want to get a cycling computer so I can actually see how fast I am going or how far I ride. I had to figure out that the ride I took was about 20 miles by figuring it with google maps
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SpecMode
Wait what
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: NorCal
 
2007-04-29, 22:24

I picked up an '07 Novara Forza at REI a couple months back, and I take it out every chance I get (in fact, I intend to ride over to the local Barnes and Noble shortly). I did a 30-mile jaunt out west of Davis about a month ago; it's about time I did another cruise, in fact, though I think I'll change the route a bit next time.
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Mac+
9" monochrome
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: I'm here
 
2007-04-29, 22:29

This reminds me of something I started - but never formally finished up. Who, here, is a mountain biker?

So, not wishing to bump my old thread TP, I offer this link as an effort to make amends - some pics of my bike

Took it out for about 35km yesterday around Zhong Shang Ling - lots of climbing, some rocky downhill passages and a few spills to boot. Ah, yes, as much as I dreaded the inevitable, the first scratches are all mine. Still, for me, mountain bike riding is where it's at! It's also perfect for the roads over here in China since so much is unfinished and rough in spots.

Re: tips - I have one tool that I take with me: an Exustar 10-in-1. It's small, lightweight and perfect for any adjustments that need to be made.

I have never owned a phone, so I don't take one ... although I'm usually mountain bike riding with friends, so that's not a concern. For long rides, make sure you take a water bottle with you.

[tangent] When we get back to Australia, I want to be a one car family. My wife can do the driving - I want to commute via PT (public transport) or ride a bike! So much better for the environment, as well as personal health. [/tangent]

All I want is a simple life
twitter
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Majost
monkey with a tiny cymbal
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Lost
 
2007-04-29, 22:30

Quote:
Originally Posted by World Leader Pretend View Post
I ride a lot and I usually try to wear a helmet. Yes, it looks tacky but I can ride along with traffic much easier if I wear one for some reason (people don't swerve as much to pass you, etc).
Dude, helmets do not look tacky. Just wear the damn thing. If you think yours looks tacky, grab a new one. The ones for about $50 nowadays are extraordinarily lightweight, have lots of holes for air, and really don't look bad at all. I *never* leave the house without a helmet.

Then again, I do cycle on the streets of Chicago; an accident is inevitable at some point (I've already gotten hit twice, but they were just sideswipes where I didn't even fall off the bike... I just lost a bit of skin off my knuckles and got really angry at the drivers).
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Mac+
9" monochrome
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: I'm here
 
2007-04-29, 22:34

It's mandatory to wear a helmet when bike riding in Australia.
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pscates2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2007-04-29, 22:36

I bike casually (and flat)...

Here's mine...no, seriously!. Bought it in Encinitas, CA in 2001.

I put whitewalls on it, and a chrome bullet headlamp.

I rode it all the time when I lived in Carlsbad, a block or so from the beach: to the store, to the pub, to dinner, to the beach, back to the pub, to 7-11, to the pub again, etc. (you can see how I spent my "beach years", can't you?).

It's all residential (and hilly) where I am now (with no real destination to go to except for an exceptionally shitty convenience store about a quarter mile away), and this thing weighs about 6,000 pounds so I'm not riding it as much now, but I need to change that. It's too cool to sit around, not being ridden (currently hanging on the wall in my grandpa's garage).

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ThunderPoit
Captain Potatoman
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Saint Paul
 
2007-04-29, 22:41

i havent bought a helmet yet, but i probably should. I'm not too worried about it as I don't do any on street driving at the moment, so there is less risk of being hit. But the big risk I run into are the idiots who cannot seem to read a friggen sign.

Lake Calhoun has 2 trails, one for peds, and one for bikes/rollerblades. The bike/blade path is a 1 way going clockwise around the lake. Signs are posted everywhere and its painted on the trail every few hundred feet. You think these people could figure out that its not a good idea to walk the wrong way around a one way bike path, WITH THEIR FRIGGEN KIDS EVEN!

anyhow, that was my rant for the day.
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murbot
Mammogram Tech
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Canada
 
2007-04-29, 22:46

OK, I'm cheating here, but whatever. I took mine for a 100km spin this morning.



Set a new personal speed record of 282 km/hr before having to slow down for traffic. (damn cars)
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turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2007-04-29, 22:49

I would love to get a bike and go riding. I used to do it all the time as kid along the George Washington Memorial Parkway. I really miss it now. I want to get another bike and enough for my family, but it seems like a hurdle we haven't fought to get over with the apartment we live in. They don't want our bikes on the balconies, but we don't want them inside our closets. Oh how much fun it would be to ride on the boardwalk though. For now, we rollerblade instead.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
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iThink therefore iMac
Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
 
2007-04-29, 22:55

I like to mountain bike. I have a Trek 8000 that is about 6 years old and I love it!
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SpecMode
Wait what
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: NorCal
 
2007-04-29, 23:26

This is the route I rode a month ago; all flat, low-traffic, and fairly scenic once you get close to Winters. Anyone living or visiting near Sacramento/Davis, this is a route worth trying out. I'm looking at a longer ride, probably 40-50 miles, a couple weekends from now.
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Perfecting_Zero
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
 
2007-04-29, 23:44



I adore bicycle riding... I've discovered nothing better for my mind and body than riding as fast and as hard as I can. I ride every day. I'm addicted to it.
Majost (and others) offered some excellent advice.

Cheers to all the AN cyclists!

"We do not see things as they are, we see them as we are." Anais Nin
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AWR
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: State of Flux
 
2007-04-30, 02:34

Nice ride, Perfecting_Zero!

Just got a new bike, myself. Will chime in when I get a homemade picture of it (her).
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beardedmacuser
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: eastmidlandshire
 
2007-04-30, 04:34

Nice looking bike, Perfecting_Zero! Such all-round road/cross/commuting bikes haven't made much of an impact here it the UK, yet. Very nice!

By the looks of it, are those mechanical disc brakes? Out of curiosity, how do get on living with them everyday? Some say mechanical discs can be a hassle compared to hydraulic, but as I don't have a bike with discs I have no idea.
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Perfecting_Zero
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
 
2007-04-30, 07:22

Thanks, AWR and beardedmacuser.

AWR, yeah... my bike is a "she," as well -- Bessy. Bessy the bike. I look forward to your photos!

beardedmacuser, cyclocross, as a sport, is still relatively uncommon in the US. However, the bikes themselves are gaining in popularity as they offer a bit more versatility (namely, the frame clearance for 700 X 32 knobby tires) and robustness. My bike is a Lemond Poprad Disc. I keep my bike set up for road more than for dirt. And yes, I made a conscious decision to ride a nice, well-executed platform pedal over the almost-ubiquitous "clipless" pedals.

Quote:
Out of curiosity, how do get on living with them everyday? Some say mechanical discs can be a hassle compared to hydraulic
The brakes are indeed mechanical, but I think that you have gotten their propensities-for-hassle stated backwards: typically, the hydraulic discs are more troublesome. They are susceptible to fluid contamination, leakage, hose damage and catastrophic failure beyond the means of easy roadside repair. I've had virtually no issues with the Avid mechanical discs. It is imperative that the rotor surfaces remain free of oil and grease, so I rub them down with denatured alcohol once or twice a month.

The advantage of discs over rim brakes is that their stopping power is relatively unaffected by snow, rain, mud, etc. Granted, this advantage is partly a simple function of their location toward the center of the wheel's (more protected) circumference rather than being mounted at the edge (or rim) of the wheel's (more exposed to road grime) outer circumference.

Those of you with carbon fiber road bikes, how do you like them? I think that my riding style is too aggressive for the somewhat delicate-natured carbon fiber frame. I prefer a well-made steel frame. But I think that I'm old-fashioned that way.

"We do not see things as they are, we see them as we are." Anais Nin
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beardedmacuser
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: eastmidlandshire
 
2007-04-30, 07:41

Quote:
Originally Posted by Perfecting_Zero View Post
Those of you with carbon fiber road bikes, how do you like them? I think that my riding style is too aggressive for the somewhat delicate-natured carbon fiber frame. I prefer a well-made steel frame. But I think that I'm old-fashioned that way.
I agree, you can't beat a good old steel frame for comfort and longevity, but I've never owned a bike as solid and pleasant to ride as my carbon-framed Trek road bike. It combines the comfort of steel with supreme stiffness and sublime handling. By far the weakest and least stiff part of that bike are the wheels. I've thrashed that frame over thousands of race miles, crashed a few times, and it's still as good as new apart from a couple of scratches from nasty aluminium bikes in crashes. I've gone through several pairs of wheels for it though. Should I get back to racing at the end of this summer it'll be due a new groupset and another pair of wheels.

Of course as with all frames, the choice of material is only half the story. It's possible to find crap carbon frames, and sometimes aluminium can make for a decent frame too (not that I've ever found however). In fact, come to think of it, I've seen several steel or aluminium frames snapped clean in half in big crashes but I've never seen a carbon frame suffer such a catastrophic break.
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InactionMan
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2007-04-30, 08:13

Last year I started a thread to get advice on buying a bike (lo! it's right at the top of the similar threads thing!) and got lots of great advice. I never got around to getting one last year. But I finally bought a bike last week. It's a low end Trek (cost about $400 Canadian). Biking to work is pretty much the greatest thing ever. It takes me around fifteen minutes from door to door as opposed to the hour it takes on the TTC. And biking means I get to avoid all the fat sweaty that crowd public transit.
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Dorian Gray
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Paris, France
 
2007-04-30, 08:17

Oooh, I love seeing other people's bicycles! Such a personal glimpse into the soul of the owner. Take Perfecting_Zero's pedals for instance: platforms with enough surface area to throw a decent party! The fact that he consciously chose these...things...over clipless offers a good starting point for assessing his mental health state.

Nah, I like your bike okay, Perfecting_Zero. LeMond make great frames of course, with lovely classic proportions and design elements. The ride quality of a steel bike is unbeatable until you hit the first hill that needs the small ring. I'm no fan of reflectors in the spokes though. "An ounce off the wheels is a pound of the bike" and all that.

AWR: looking forward to seeing this BMC dream machine. I didn't know BMC made mountain bikes. I vaguely remember you were thinking of getting an American handmade bike. Did that change for practical reasons (e.g. availability in Switzerland) or did you just change your mind?

ThunderPoit: start by definitely getting a helmet. I can't even sit on my bike without a helmet because it feels so wrong (like driving without a seatbelt: that naked feeling). Helmets vary in aesthetics, protection and price. My favourite for the past couple of years has been the Catlike Whisper, a Spanish helmet that looks funky and offers plenty of ventilation air flow. It's not the most aerodynamic helmet on the market but that's not so important if you're not racing or doing time trials.

By the way, shaving your legs is not optional! You know you want to. Gives you an edge in the bluffing stakes, too.

… engrossed in such factional acts as dreaming different dreams.
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beardedmacuser
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: eastmidlandshire
 
2007-04-30, 08:36

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dorian Gray View Post
By the way, shaving your legs is not optional!
Hairy legs and Lycra is just WRONG! *shudder*

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dorian Gray View Post
ThunderPoit: start by definitely getting a helmet.
Just get a helmet. It's simple and there's no reason not to. Cars and roads are hard; heads are soft. Just do it.

Last edited by beardedmacuser : 2007-04-30 at 08:36. Reason: Posts merged
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autodata
hustlin
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2007-04-30, 08:36

Quote:
Originally Posted by Majost View Post
Dude, helmets do not look tacky. Just wear the damn thing. If you think yours looks tacky, grab a new one. The ones for about $50 nowadays are extraordinarily lightweight, have lots of holes for air, and really don't look bad at all. I *never* leave the house without a helmet.

Then again, I do cycle on the streets of Chicago; an accident is inevitable at some point (I've already gotten hit twice, but they were just sideswipes where I didn't even fall off the bike... I just lost a bit of skin off my knuckles and got really angry at the drivers).
Indeed. In the past 5 years I've had one degree of separation from two bikers who were killed in separate accidents in chicago.
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Banana
is the next Chiquita
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
 
2007-04-30, 08:49

I'm still waiting to be included in their markets.
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murbot
Mammogram Tech
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Canada
 
2007-04-30, 09:02

OK, here's mine. I think I bought it in 1991 for about $1000.

No girlie features to make me soft, like shocks and shit. My legs and arms are the shocks. Grrrr.



Oh, and please ignore the colour scheme. I was still under the effects of the late 80's, early 90's flashy colour mind control experiments by the government. My god, you should have seen the Kemper snowboard jacket I had back then. Yikes.

I'm thinking of spray painting it a nice dull grey.
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709
¡Damned!
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Purgatory
 
2007-04-30, 09:12



I'm a badass.
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Sketch
Formerly “iceman009”
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Some place
 
2007-04-30, 09:14

Quote:
Originally Posted by 709 View Post


I'm a badass.
Is this your bike? Damn! some gangsta shit! what do you go pimpin' with it or what?
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709
¡Damned!
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Purgatory
 
2007-04-30, 09:18

Serious. I look awesome too. Half-helmet, aviator goggles and black lycra shorts...with fringe.
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Sketch
Formerly “iceman009”
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Some place
 
2007-04-30, 09:19

Quote:
Originally Posted by 709 View Post
Serious. I look awesome too. Half-helmet, aviator goggles and black lycra shorts...with fringe.
What, no bling bling?
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