Bicycles!

CraigB

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Took the new to me Knolly Endorphin out for a fairly long test drive in northwest Arkansas. Put nearly 17 miles on it, but after about mile 12 I was toast. Pushing up some of the steeper sections.

Overall, I like the bike, could use a few tweeks, but I'm excited to have a fairly modern (for me) bike.
 

altoid

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I did that thing a third time: Ride for Black Lives Los Angeles 2020.09.26

1am bedtime + 6am alarm = coffee:


The pre-ride ride, from my place in Marina Del Rey to ride start in West Hollywood:


Threw out the gross main helmet and wore the commuter instead:


Ride start, still a bit cloudy around 8am:


Ride finish, quite sunny by then:


Ride summary (rode the "bottom" section thrice, as always):


Post-ride recovery:



Unrelatedly, after two months of living in this apartment, I finally stopped being lazy and mounted both bikes on the rack:


While it looks pretty good and even works OK, there are a few issues:
• Both bikes sometimes touch the wall, so it's gonna get destroyed over time;
• Taking them off and putting them back on is tedious as fuck;
• Can't wait for an earthquake.

That aside, I've been wondering if there's a point to holding onto the Fuji anyway. I kept it as a beater bike when I got the Cannondale, but have used it for that purpose only a few times at my old apartment and zero times here. I don't see that changing either, to be honest. I didn't want to risk theft of the nice bike by locking it up in front of the store or bar, but that's become a complete non-issue.

In fact, I've only ridden the beater on Ride for Black Lives rides in months now, and I was already thinking about taking the Cannondale next time, since the Fuji simply isn't as nice, and I seem to care at least a little by the time I need to head back. I chose the Fuji for these in case the police decided to crash the party, but I'm not worried about that any more. Besides, the Cannondale is actually insured.

The best argument in favor of keeping the Fuji now is having a backup bike. The US bike market is fucked—courtesy of COVID-19-inspired resurgence of cycling interest—so getting a replacement for the Cannondale might not be trivial. But this feels like a real stretch of a reason, and not enough if it's the only one.

Anyway, enough rambling about that. In other news, I ordered a new helmet to replace the utterly disgusting Kali Loka I've had for two years, and I'm excited for my fancy new Giro Cinder to arrive tomorrow. I ordered some casquettes today to try and keep some of the sweat away from the padding, but that's probably for naught and a worse strategy than just buying cheaper helmets more often.

I'm also thinking about getting a seat-mounted dual bottle cage to up my max capacity to four bottles. Some of these longer rides can be a bit dehydrading in the sun, and refilling the frame-mounted bottles isn't as easy during the pandemic as it was before.
 

altoid

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Moved my Brooks Imperial B17 from the Fuji onto the Cannondale to give it a whirl, and it looks pretty awful, but will likely be super comfy! :D

 

NooDle

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That setup looks noice. I have tons of bikes so I just use my carhole to put bikes. It's more of a bikehole, really, as there hasn't been a car inside there for years. I'm not even sure my Golf would fit, haven't ever tried it.
So yeah, 2 kids with 3 bikes each, I have 2 and my wife has a bike, which makes 9, and that's not counting the little rocker bikes and scooter thingies.
Since everyone uses every kind of bike all the time I can't really mount them to the wall... But these things are nice and don't use up a lot of space.

Also, don't get rid of a perfectly good bike. You may need a spare at some point or indeed some beater bike to just get around (as in, use a bike for, transportation, instead of leasure - what an idea, I know)
 

altoid

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That setup looks noice. I have tons of bikes so I just use my carhole to put bikes. It's more of a bikehole, really, as there hasn't been a car inside there for years. I'm not even sure my Golf would fit, haven't ever tried it.

Ha, a garage, some day!


Also, don't get rid of a perfectly good bike. You may need a spare at some point or indeed some beater bike to just get around (as in, use a bike for, transportation, instead of leasure - what an idea, I know)

Y'know, I appreciate the thoughts, but I literally covered that toward the end of my post… 😂
 

eizbaer

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Moved my Brooks Imperial B17 from the Fuji onto the Cannondale to give it a whirl, and it looks pretty awful, but will likely be super comfy! :D

Well, that's one major rule of the cycling world... saddles that mostly look super uncomfortable are actually most comfortable. I know of enough guys that run bare carbon saddles (as in: no padding at all) on their road bikes and they swear it's the most comfortable they've ever been :dunno:
 

NooDle

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I just use whatever standard saddle there is and put on riding pants. Yeah it looks silly (unless you can get one with a loose short over the top) but it's SO comfortable, especially after a few hours riding...
 

altoid

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Well, that's one major rule of the cycling world... saddles that mostly look super uncomfortable are actually most comfortable. I know of enough guys that run bare carbon saddles (as in: no padding at all) on their road bikes and they swear it's the most comfortable they've ever been :dunno:

I think the Brooks looks super comfortable, and it really is (at least for upright riding, haven't tested it on a spirited ride yet). Given how much I hate its looks already, I'll have to do some shopping around. Something like the Fizik Antares is likely to work reasonably well for me, but I have yet to measure my sit bones to have a bit more certainty.


I just use whatever standard saddle there is and put on riding pants. Yeah it looks silly (unless you can get one with a loose short over the top) but it's SO comfortable, especially after a few hours riding...

I don't ride without padded bib shorts ever any more. Trying them was a one way street many years ago.
 

DanRoM

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After the chain of my trekking bike broke earlier this month (see this post), I went through a bit of trouble searching for replacement parts (see that post), but I managed to source what I needed from bike-components.de and gave the parts and the bike to the dealer last week. Today, I got my bike back with a new drive train, freshly adjusted brakes and gears, and centred wheels. Overall cost: Just shy of €200 for parts and labour.
The ride home was pure awesome. :)

Next up: a new stem that's actually adjustable (I killed the allen screw in the old one long ago, no chance of getting it out) to make for a bit more comfortable riding position.
And treating the road bike to the same "new drive train" treatment in time for next season. I don't want to end up stranded somewhere with that, too. Especially as I tend to ride it in areas where public transport availability is not as perfect as in the spot I had the defect three weeks ago.
 

Blind_Io

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@Kiki and I are thinking about getting some Fat Bikes for snow riding this winter. It's only been 20 years since I did any cycling and apparently everyone else is doing the same. I can't seem to find much in the way of Fat Bikes that hit that intermediate ground between "Walmart junk" and "$2,000 competition machine".

Our friend recommended the Framed Wildtrax, which is out of stock everywhere.
 

eizbaer

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Never really understood fat bikes myself... seems like a weird concept. But with snow (which we don't really get here, at all) I can sort of see the appeal.

Seems like those got hit by the exact same Corona wave as basically all other bikes - EVERYTHING seems to be sold out EVERYWHERE (slowly getting better now) :| Which sucks for people in the market to actually buy stuff, but on the other hand: lots more cyclists, which can only be a good thing in my book.
 

CraigB

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Look for used. I'd say by now many who bought early in the pandemic have already reverted to riding the couch.
 

Blind_Io

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Any brands or models that I should look for as a good value for money, or any I should avoid for being cheap junk? I saw a Mongoose for sale recently for a good price, but the last time I looked at bike that was a fairly low-end brand.
 

CraigB

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I'm not real up on newer brands, but I do know Mongoose sold out long ago. I would avoid them.

Trek, Giant, Salsa, Specialized are brands I know are still sold at local bike shops.

I have never bought from them, but Bikes Direct (http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/fat-bikes.htm) ships you a bike straight to you, but there's usually a couple month wait. I rode with guy that bought one of their full suspension MTBs, it was... OK. The parts were fine, the frame was decent, but it just wasn't quite as nice as something you'd buy at a LBS. Though it was miles away better than a big box bike.
 

altoid

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Moved my Brooks Imperial B17 from the Fuji onto the Cannondale to give it a whirl, and it looks pretty awful, but will likely be super comfy! :D


As I posted elsewhere, the Brooksperiment is over. Verdict: meh. The B17 is a bit wide and thus uncomfortable for aggressive riding. And it just looks so terribad on the otherwise thoroughly contemporary bike. Back to the stock one until I figure out its actual long-term replacement. But I do think this exercise made me realize I had it too low in the first place, so the next ride will be a bit of an on-the-road bike fit.



Unrelatedly, got caught being a radical lefty on the far left:
 

NooDle

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Any brands or models that I should look for as a good value for money, or any I should avoid for being cheap junk? I saw a Mongoose for sale recently for a good price, but the last time I looked at bike that was a fairly low-end brand.

Depends on how you want to use them.

Ive looked into them myself before I decided on my current MTB. They're super fun for a while and you can ride over ANY obstacle without real skill needed, because of the massive cushion the tyre is. But OTOH they are a bitch to ride on the road because of super fat tyres (rolling resistance) + ridiculously low pressure.

I've seen some for sale for 500€ or less, steer clear (low quality parts, or inobtanium if they break). Most decent ones are in the 1.000-1500€ bracket...
 

altoid

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I got the idea to explore Los Angeles a little bit, so after living near the Lakers practice facility for seven years out of the nine, I ventured thataways yesterday: Beach + Lakers Practice Facility (alt title: Elevation Gain Level: Blaze It)

It involved some trippy weather, the briefest of 18% grade climbs, and a few near-death experiences thanks to the ample sand all over the beach bike path, but it was a lot of fun!

Ride overview:


Trippy:



Lakers Team Shop, right next to the practice facility—closed when I was there, luckily for my wallet:


Where greatness is forged:



I've got some other fun routes planned for the future, too.
 

NooDle

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Who broke the combo on Strava? 5h10-4h10-3h10-2h10 needs someone with 1h10
 

NooDle

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:oops: 100+ kms is still a long way off from mere mortals like me...
Also super shitty weather here so I doubt I'll get many miles under my belt this week.

Goal is still to reach 2500 kms by the end of the year, I'm at 2206 now.
Not bad, considering my total mileage in 2019 was around 500. Yay, corona!
 
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