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Advise on buying a new road bike, Specialized Roubaix

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Nelson Au, Jul 10, 2009.

  1. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    Torque- Enough to keep the post from slipping but not too much to crush the post.. :)

    I've never used a torque wrench on seatposts. If anything, you might look at torque specs for things like chainring bolts and things that can go squeek but tires and seatposts, nobody I know uses a torque wrench, and nobody I know certainly carries one around anyway..

    jay
     
  2. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    Well guys, thought I'd chime in for a quick update.


    I have 197 miles on the bike. I mere hop around the block for some riders! I'm putting in about 15 miles a week or so. Nothing big as I get used to it. My endurance is increasing as is speed. Some days I'm feeling good, others I feel not so!


    I live along the San Francisco Bay, so there's a bike path along the shore. When I ride northerly, there's a strong wind coming at me. It's constant out there. I was doing 10 mph against a strong headwind as I was warming up, a guy on a fixed gear bike, and older one too, blew past me! I could not catch him on my fancy schmancy CF bike! It took me 3 miles and I got him!


    I'm not pushing myself as hard as I ease back into it. By August I hope to have the milage up. At least I'm more one with the bike now and I don't fear the fork folding in on me anymore or the frame cracking. I don't plan to do any climbing yet.


    So far the bike has held up nicely, no issues, though the pedals are getting a bit scratched from me stepping on the bottoms whenever I try to get in them! The bike is a dusty from the bike path. The fit is good. Though on a longer 15 mile ride I did, my neck was really hurting at mile 12. My neck must be out of shape!


    Anyway, I will try to maintain a training schedule of about the same amount of miles a week, about 20. I know that's not much, but I should be able to up that if my workload doesn't increase with my clients. And I have a goal to reducing some fat before the end of August! Darn work keeps getting in the way.


    PS, still have not gotten that pump yet. I must do that.
     
  3. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    You shouldn't be rubbing the pedals when you clip in, Usually with my Time ATACs, I throw the left leg over the bike (or the right leg, but usually the left leg for me. YMMV) and then I can usually click in but it doesn't matter, it is usually easier to clip in when riding than when standing still, so even if I don't click in initially, I can start riding and then click both pedals in. If you are having a problem clipping in, you can even angle the bike slightly towards you and the leg, that will give you more room to play with before the pedal hits the ground.


    Headwinds suck.... Hills are known quantities and can be overcome, Headwinds can make the flattest ride hell! :)


    Jay
     
  4. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    Thought I'd pop back in here. I've got just about 350 miles on the new Tarmac. So far so good and my endurance is going up. Depends on how much sleep I get of course. It's still functioning well and shifts precisely. Braking is great! Especially when a bunch of kids decide to goof around while in your path.

     

    Jay, regarding getting into my pedals. I was just saying that after all these years of riding, I still have times when I'm launching from a stop, difficulty getting getting my right foot clipped in. Sometimes on the first try, I get the pedal upside down. Just timing it seems! I don't mind the head winds anymore. It helps with the work-out and building up my legs again!

     

    I still need to find a pump. haven't had a chance to go get one. One thing I've been anal about is setting the cyclometer as precisely as I can. Up till today, the cyclometer was set by the bike shop that built the bike for me. They used the generic setting for tire size. So my mileage now will vary as I go from the generic setting to the more precise one! I always knew of the precise method by rolling the wheel one revolution and measuring. I made sure tire pressure was up to 110 pounds and then I loaded the bike with my weight. What's funny is a difference of 1/2 longer when the bike is unloaded! I was surprised it was that far off. So I'm not sure how this will translate. On my old bike, the distance I used to ride to a particular location was always at the 20 mile mark when I manually calibrated it. This new cyclometer that was installed on my new bike with the generic settings told me is was 15 miles. We'll see now how that works out with the re-calibrated settings. I hope I get similar results from my earlier rides when I used an Avocet.

     

    A friend was telling me he was building up a bike from used parts and stuff he's collected off cragslist. He suggested I take the 105 components off my wrecked bike and see about finding a 1990's vintage steel frame. We both admire Bianchi and my wrecked bike is an entry level Bianchi that I had upgraded in 2000 with new 105's then. So it would be interesting if I can find one from the 90's, all in Celeste of course and one from Italy as mine was a Japanese one. The only misgivings is if I'll ride it and the 105 has a triple in front. I like the compact set-up on my new Tarmac. But we'll see. I imagine it might be difficult to find Celeste colored cable tubing for the shifter cable coming out of the shifters. Maybe I can re-use the Celeste colored tubing on the bike now for the brake cables.

     

    Funny, I've re-read the posts at the beginning of this thread with all the suggestions that I try to ride as many bikes as I can before buying and not just look at Specialized. I am guilty of not looking as hard as I should. It was tough, every bike shop was Specialized around here! I felt good about the Specialized though. I had one before and I like their design too.
     
  5. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    What kind of pump you looking for a floor pump or one for the bike? There is perhaps a new brand of bike pumps that I see some favorable reviews for, it has a metal body and an extendable head (with a flexible tube so you don't have to be right at the wheel to pump.. begins with an "L". But any metal body pump is a nice touch. I've had good luck with Blackburn but with mountain bike pumps (less PSI), they've waranteed their pumps fairly well at least IME.
     

    As far as kids and games, get to know how to countersteer as well as brakes!

     

    Jay

     

    p.s. my first time wearing long pants for my bike commute this season, the weather is a-changin'
     
  6. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    Ha, ha! Yes, I've counter-steered into the direction the backend goes! I try not to let the back wheel be locked up that long though.

     

    I want to look for a pump for the bike. I used a Zefel frame pump on my old steel bike. But that doesn't look possible with the new carbon frames. So I'm going to pick up the small ones that will mount to the water bottle cage lugs. One I was told about has re-calibrated the valving so it pushes more air with less effort. Or something like that so it won't be as hard as the mountain bike type. Since I'm a designer, I might redesign the mount so it will mount centered on the tube rather then be offset and stick out. I'll do a search for pumps with an "L".

     

    Jay, you're in Massachusetts, I guess it's getting cooler there. Out here in the West coast, it's still pretty mild. Of course in the San Francisco Bay Area, this is often the warmest time of the year!

     

    Edit: is this the pump? http://www.rei.com/product/786538
     
  7. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    Yes, that's the pump, I was able to fondle one at the Arcadian Shop which is right up the road from me in Lenox, MA... They look nice... and seem to get positive reviews.. of course, a lot of folks are going CO2 but I guess I am old fashioned.. and hate what we do with the used cartridges...
     

    Yup, southern Berkshires and preparing for the onslaught of the leaf peepers...

     

    Jay
     
  8. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    Hey guys, it's been a while!


    I have nearly 500 miles on my Tarmac since I bought it. The winter weather has reduced my riding recently. Here in Sunny Northern California, there's been nice enough weather to ride recently, though it's been rainy the past couple of months.

    Since I don't want to get that baby wet, I brought out my old 1992 Rockhopper Comp. Boy, my friend wasn't kidding when he called it a boat anchor! It's still has the original tires on it! I never rode it that much as I had more fun on the road bike. So I've started to ride the mountain bike on the wet days. I've only gone a few times. I put an old set of clipless road pedals on it and an old road bike Selle Itallia saddle on it. The pedals made a huge difference in terms of riding it and not hassling with the clips. The bike weighs a ton compared to the Tarmac!


    I considered getting a new one because I figure they'd be lighter and my bike has no suspension. And my front shifter is not working, so it snaps down to the smallest cog, unless I hold it with my thumb! So I did a quick search of the new bikes, a hard tail bike looks like it still weighs around 26 pounds. I'd guess my bike weighs around 28.


    So I might try to fix the Shimano shifter, even though I know they are not fixable. I found a web page where a guy fixed the exact same shifter I have. Or buy a new shifter. Any advice on how to reduce the weight? New wheels? handle bars? Are shifters still available for my ancient 8 speed? I'll probably get new tires that are more road friendly, so the friction is reduced, but can still go off road. It actually rides pretty well with the tires pumped up. So weight only becomes a factor when I try to lift the bike or climb.


    Thanks!
     
  9. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    Check the tires for dry rot, those are old tires, dry rot affects bike tires as it does car tires... As far as the shifter goes, something might be loose inside or the pawls are worn out that the cable is slipping when you shift and the bike is going to the granny gear (it's natural gear without the tension of the chain). It's hit and miss if you can fix it but 8 spd shifters are probably still obtainable, either ebay or some websites still carry them. I think they are compatible with 9spd... I think my old marin mtn bike which was 1995 was an 8spd... I don't deal with vintage bikes though that much...

    As far as the weight, think tires, if you have a couple hundred dollars to spend, get new rims, rotational weight reduction will increase acceleration and the overall weight.


    Jay
     
  10. Steve Berger

    Steve Berger Supporting Actor

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    I've got about 5500 on my Roubaix that I got at the end of February.

    I pulled out my 1977 Trek TX900 for some bad weather. Adds 5 pounds, same fit, only feels different going uphill, no brakes. (The best brakes of the 70/80's are zero compared with the cheapest of the new ones)


    Are those friction shifters ? If so, then there is usually a simple tension adjustment device/screw.

    Something internal sticking - soak in a plastic-safe solvent.


    8 speed shifters are backward compatible with 7 speed freewheels but not forward to 9 as far as I know.

    9 speed shifters (and possibly 10 with 9) can be made to work with 8 by attaching the cable to the wrong side of the derrailleur cable clamp bolt. (pulls farther)

    Loose Screws/Third Hand http://www.loosescrews.com/index.cgi?c=Shifter&id=330385918414 has older shifters available
     
  11. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    Thanks for the input guys!


    I just double checked my Rockhopper, it's a 7 speed! The shifter I have on the bike now is a Deore DX. It's not the original shifter that came with the bike. I replaced the shifter with these so it would have indexing and is thumb operated. There is a guy with a webpage that shows how he fixed his shifter. Its the same shifter I have and it was due to the grease inside caking up and not allowing the parts inside to move. So he sprayed it with a solvent and it freed up. Then put in new grease and it works like new. I can give that a try, if that fails, I'll look at a replacement. Or try to find my original friction shifter.


    I can't tell if the tires are dryrotted. From what I can see, they look pretty good. I put about 25 or 30 miles on them since I pulled the bike out of retirement. There are small cracks on the sidewall rubber. But I don't plan to keep these tires on there for much longer.


    As soon as I can get the drive train working properly, I'll consider wheels and new tires. My wheels are still in great shape. But I'll see what I can find. And I've always wanted to look at those bar end bars so I can ride with my hands in a similar position as on the road bike.
     
  12. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    Usually the cracks in the sidewall is the sign of dry rot, you can check to see if any of them are on the inside of the tire, which is usually the death knell...

    Jay
     
  13. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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