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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 10-23-08, 12:56 PM   #1
Mr. Beanz
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LOOK MA! ...No Hands! (how many of you can?)

Went out for another hilly 30 miles today. Nobody to photograph, nothing of interest other than my own talent!....Figured I'd get some kind of photo on my ride!

It's a cool thing and handy to be able to ride with no hands. Pictures, removing jackets, remove the helmet for the bee search, the usual! How many of you's can ride 'no hands no prollem'?

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Old 10-23-08, 01:13 PM   #2
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I work on it a little each ride. Getting more comfortable with it. I figure it's a necessary skill for long group rides. Being able to free up your hands to open snack packaging and eating while riding is very helpful. Not to mention being able to put on/take off a jacket, zip up or down your jersey, etc.
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Old 10-23-08, 01:13 PM   #3
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I am much better right after I true my wheels. I thought it was me on one ride when I was trying to stetch my back and couldn't go straight without my hands on the bars.

Checked the wheels and they were off. Then it wasn't a problem.
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Old 10-23-08, 01:20 PM   #4
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I'm good for short distances. I think I have saddle issues to work out because I have to tilt it forward to be comfortable, which makes me feel like I'm going to slip off the seat w/o hands!
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Old 10-23-08, 01:24 PM   #5
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I am much better right after I true my wheels. I thought it was me on one ride when I was trying to stetch my back and couldn't go straight without my hands on the bars.

Checked the wheels and they were off. Then it wasn't a problem.
I know a couple that was having problems. The woman was having a hard time controlling her bike. I looked at the back wheel, was near one of the stays. Plus the tire was showing wear signs on the edge of the tire!

I suggested taking it back as they had just had a "good" expensive tuneup. I mentioned the dish looked way off. Week after they returned with a much better adjusted wheel. Problems solved!
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Old 10-23-08, 01:27 PM   #6
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I work on it a little each ride. Getting more comfortable with it. I figure it's a necessary skill for long group rides. Being able to free up your hands to open snack packaging and eating while riding is very helpful. Not to mention being able to put on/take off a jacket, zip up or down your jersey, etc.
This is me, too...working on it every ride. I got somewhat comfortable going "hands free" on my hybrid, but the faster steering of my road bike was like going back to the start.
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Old 10-23-08, 01:35 PM   #7
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Learned it when I was a kid and haven't forgotten. It was easier on a bike w/ a banana seat. No sliding forward.
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Old 10-23-08, 01:52 PM   #8
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Well, on my trike, It's pretty darn easy! Even do a no hands/no feet move.

On my recumbent, hands-free is suicide. The wheel is so far out in front of the rider that you can't really shift your weight to account for give in the steering.

I could do it on my Navigator, but was afraid to press my luck.
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Old 10-23-08, 02:11 PM   #9
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On my recumbent, hands-free is suicide. The wheel is so far out in front of the rider that you can't really shift your weight to account for give in the steering.

Oh C'mon, you can do it! Just be sure to show us the postride pics!
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Old 10-23-08, 02:19 PM   #10
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I cannot do it and am not optimistic about getting there any time soon on my road bike. Could do it as a kid, but with much more massive and "untwitchy" bike.
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Old 10-23-08, 02:29 PM   #11
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I cannot do it and am not optimistic about getting there any time soon on my road bike. Could do it as a kid, but with much more massive and "untwitchy" bike.

Helps if you use the inner thighs clenched on the saddle.
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Old 10-23-08, 02:38 PM   #12
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I finally succeeded for the first time in over 40 years on the 6-month anniversary of acquiring Radagast the Beige-and-Black. Since then, I've done as much as 3.8 miles in El Dorado Park one morning. Coulda made it a full 4 if I'd kept going the way I had been instead of taking another path.

Why do it? Because. I. Can.
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Old 10-23-08, 02:40 PM   #13
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I can def ride though I dunno if i could remove a jacket and pedal, my guess is i'd have to coast no handed to do something like that.
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Old 10-23-08, 03:03 PM   #14
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I'd be much better at it if I was riding stoker on a tandem.
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Old 10-23-08, 03:14 PM   #15
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I am one of those annoying no-hand fixed riders. Its actually easier than a freewheel bike. TO me anyway...
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Old 10-23-08, 03:55 PM   #16
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For anyone having trouble learning no-hands, try sliding your butt all the way to the back of your saddle and sitting straight up. I get way better steering control that way. (I also have a fairly relaxed bike with a very stable trail to the fork.)
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Old 10-23-08, 08:34 PM   #17
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I have to suspect that the bike characteristics have a lot to do with this.... will try some of the suggested techniques though.
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Old 10-23-08, 08:39 PM   #18
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I have been frustrated by my lack of not being able to ride hands free. I can hardly get my hands a few inches off the bar before I have to grab them because I feel so unstable.
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Old 10-23-08, 08:52 PM   #19
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I have 3 bikes, one will stay balanced well with no hands, another does a fair job and the last FORGET IT.

Anyhow,, I sit here in pain from my crash last week, my hands were on the bar, my eyes were not on the road, still, I am done with careless and unsafe activities.
I'm just chicken of crashing again, pain sucks.
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Old 10-23-08, 09:06 PM   #20
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When I was a kid, I think I rode more without hands then with.

Last year when I got my Rainier, I would let go and within a couple seconds, the handlebars would start to shake violently. If left unattended the result would be disastrous. I took the bike in and had the wheels trued, but no help. Very late last year, I had a flat and noticed that my back tire was cracking a bit, so I decided to change out both tires. When we pulled the back tire, we noticed a thick area about 4 inches long on the inside of the tire on one of the sidewalls. The rubber was twice as thick in that area as the rest of the tire and had it out of balance.

After we changed out the tires, I could let go and no matter the speed, it was smooth as silk. Last Sunday I was riding in the Shawnee National Forest, and realized that I needed to tell my wife something. Without even thinking about it, I reached with my left hand into my pocket, got the Crackberry out and used my right hand to dial. I was talking to Tracey when it hit me, I had my left hand to my ear and my right hand was hanging down and shaking off a little bar numb, and I was just peddling along. Felt really cool. Reminded me of being a kid

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Old 10-23-08, 09:11 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Mr. Beanz View Post
Went out for another hilly 30 miles today. Nobody to photograph, nothing of interest other than my own talent!....Figured I'd get some kind of photo on my ride!

It's a cool thing and handy to be able to ride with no hands. Pictures, removing jackets, remove the helmet for the bee search, the usual! How many of you's can ride 'no hands no prollem'?

It does really depend on the bike, a nice stable bike with a decently balanced weight shouldn't have a problem, some bikes though are not very stable, and that can make it nearly impossible. Another factor is weight, not total weight but distribution of weight side to side, even if the bike is stable put 4L of milk in a pannier on one side, with something light in the other pannier and it becomes impossible, you can probably figure out how I know this I could easily do it in 1980, so I could probably do it now, but the MTB is too unstable and the bike is not well balanced most of the time.....
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Old 10-23-08, 09:43 PM   #22
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I learned back when I used to race for Brea Velo (currently known as Velo Avanti) in Juniors. I'd go for 75 mile morning training rides and I'd carry one of the quick bowls of cold cereal. I had an a water bottle half full of milk and a banana. I would pull the bowl out of my jersey pocket while riding, flick the lid off the bowl, place it in back in my pocket, get the water bottle, squirt milk in the bowl and eat the cereal all while riding. Everyone on our team became good at doing it because we were out riding at 5-5:30 in the morning. Anyway, quite a few people can do it but it's really important to have a well balanced bike in order to stay at it. 19 miles per hour with no hands? That's really commendable. You are Da Man!!!
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Old 10-23-08, 09:46 PM   #23
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I have been frustrated by my lack of not being able to ride hands free. I can hardly get my hands a few inches off the bar before I have to grab them because I feel so unstable.
That's the toughest position IMO. Once you sit up and relax, it's muich easier. Need confidence to let go of the bars. It's like skating. Much better when you relax and bend the knees a little. Most are scared to relax and keep the stiff knees.

It's tough to ride with torso hunched over towards the bars. Just sit up, it'll come!
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Old 10-23-08, 09:50 PM   #24
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It does really depend on the bike, a nice stable bike with a decently balanced weight shouldn't have a problem, some bikes though are not very stable, and that can make it nearly impossible. Another factor is weight, not total weight but distribution of weight side to side, even if the bike is stable put 4L of milk in a pannier on one side, with something light in the other pannier and it becomes impossible, you can probably figure out how I know this I could easily do it in 1980, so I could probably do it now, but the MTB is too unstable and the bike is not well balanced most of the time.....
Hmmm,never had a problem. 3 differ roadies, hybrids, my mtb with knobbies, all easy 'nuff! I can almost do it on the tandem but Gina doesn't like it!...Don't think I'd try it tour loaded though!


I can ride no hands for miles! Overpasses, underpasses, turns, it's all fun!
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Old 10-23-08, 09:54 PM   #25
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19 miles per hour with no hands? That's really commendable. You are Da Man!!!

And my eyes were closed!.........................
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