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Old 07-15-04, 08:25 AM   #1
hooligan
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I really do not understand this...

MY bike ( a department store bike, shouldn't really matter) has poor balancing issues. I mean I can ride no hands for long on other peoples bikes and on my old bike. Im like 159cm tall and I'm riding a (yes I know its far too big) 20'' inch bike. Is the issue my balance, the bike's balance or the size difference?
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Old 07-15-04, 08:34 AM   #2
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Yes, quality does matter to some extent. Things that contribute to not being able to ride no handed might be wheels out of true, bad headset adjustments and other things not properly tuned or assembled. The other thing to consider is the geometry of the bike. I have a hell of a time riding my Specialized Hardrock without hands, but can do it. I can ride my road bike without hands all day and even make small turns on it. Geometry and rider position seem to make the biggest difference in my opinion.
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Old 07-15-04, 08:35 AM   #3
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From my experience, department store bikes are lower quality, but the main problem is who built the bike. It was not built by someone who was trained in bike building, it was most likely built by the guy who gets paid minimum wage to work in the sports dept. Because they are lower quality, they are hard to adjust and build anyway...add to that the fact that an untrained person built it and you have an unstable bike.

My first thought would be to check over the bike completely, and if you don't know how to, get a friend who does. Make sure the wheels are true and are installed correctly, make sure the bottom bracket and the headset are installed correctly, and make sure everything else is straight...including the frame. The frame and fork are hard to check without the proper tools, and I doubt the dept. store checked the frame and fork for damage when the received the bike.
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Old 07-15-04, 10:19 AM   #4
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Being a department store bike is irrelavant here. Bikes with varying degrees of frame geometry and fork rake/trail will all exhibit different levels of twitchiness. I can ride a couple of my bikes VERY SLOW no-handed while on others I have to pick up some speed to stay stable no-handed.
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Old 07-15-04, 06:57 PM   #5
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A poor qulaity frame with, varying tube wall, thickness can cause a balance problem.
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Old 07-15-04, 07:13 PM   #6
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Well, I built it myself. My wheel is a tiny bit outta true but my friend's are out of true and his works quite well. I think I need to adjust my headset a bit. I mean I can ride no hands if Im moving fast already but as soon as the bike leans a bit, it starts over doing it and I Cant recover unless I use my handlebars. Oh well, riding no hands is bearly used when mountain biking .
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Old 07-15-04, 10:59 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hooligan
Well, I built it myself. My wheel is a tiny bit outta true but my friend's are out of true and his works quite well. I think I need to adjust my headset a bit. I mean I can ride no hands if Im moving fast already but as soon as the bike leans a bit, it starts over doing it and I Cant recover unless I use my handlebars. Oh well, riding no hands is bearly used when mountain biking .
If it's a department store bike, it's probably not a mountain bike even though it might look like one. Many of them are now labeled "not for off-road use".
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Old 07-16-04, 10:40 AM   #8
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If it's a department store bike, it's probably not a mountain bike even though it might look like one. Many of them are now labeled "not for off-road use".
We were just discussing this and the subject of fork rake and trail came up, not mention Botton bracket height as influnecing handling.
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Old 07-16-04, 08:22 PM   #9
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Oh well, riding no hands is bearly used when mountain biking .
My opinion: riding no hands is just not a real smart thing to do no matter what kind of biking you're up too. The ability to ride no handed on a particular bike bears no reflection on the quality of the bike.
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Old 07-18-04, 07:00 PM   #10
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I would not attempt to ride any department store bike offroad. They are not designed for that type of use even if they resemble real mountain bikes. Even bikes in bicycle stores that are under $500 do not hold up very well to serious offroad use. My point is do not use the bike for what it was not intended for unless you are willing to risk serious personal injury.
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Old 07-20-04, 09:46 PM   #11
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Your headset or front hub is probably loose...
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