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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 10-23-09, 01:49 PM   #1
Hellga
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Athena Intro Post

Hi, everyone! I'm so glad I found this forum...

My name is Jana. I live in Kansas, near Topeka, and I used to ride my bike every single day for hours on end....back in middle school. That was over 10 years ago, and I'm terribly out of shape now. I'm 6' and 238 pounds (as of 10 minutes ago), and I really want to get back into bike riding. My husband and I rode some last spring, on a couple of older mountain bikes, and it felt great! It did make my knee hurt, though so I've been trying to exercise it. I've never been diagnosed with any knee problems, but based on my own internet research it seems like cartilage degeneration.

So, anyway, we were doing good, getting up to 30 minute rides at a time, and something terrible happened...my bike frame (which was cheap, but supposed to be 100% aluminum), split open down the welding seam on the top tube, and it's all rusty! I don't trust the thing to hold my weight anymore, so I'm waiting on getting my *other* bike finished.

My other bike is a Huffy Galaxie from some time in the 50s or 60s. I did know, but I can't remember now It was rescued from a field owned by a friend, and is in the process right now of being completely spiffed up. Pics:

When we got it.

The only in-progress shot I seem to have.

And, for reference, my sister's bike was in the same condition when we got it...here it is now:

Ooh shiny!

So, basically, I'm just here looking for a home...I can't wait to get back into riding, and in the meantime I'm sure I'll come up with lots of questions to ask!
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Old 10-23-09, 02:06 PM   #2
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Welcome Hellga!

I totally dig the bike. You are right, it will awesome once you get done with the rehab. I actually have a Monarch from the same time period that is in a much worse state than yours. Much Worse. I loved the frame style and saved it from going to the land fill. I haven't done anything with it yet, but it will someday find a home with a fresh start.

As far as your knee problem goes, it may have been the size of your old bike or the way you had it adjusted. Did you by chance have the seat adjusted so you could put your feet on the ground while sitting on the seat? Also, at 6' tall you will need a fairly large frame to get a good fit, and sadly chances are not many women's specific bikes are going to fit you well.
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Old 10-23-09, 02:55 PM   #3
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It did make my knee hurt, though so I've been trying to exercise it. I've never been diagnosed with any knee problems, but based on my own internet research it seems like cartilage degeneration.
I, too, had knee pain... until I got a professional "fit" done. Once the Pro adjusted the height and position of my saddle, length of my stem, width of my handlebars, cleat placement, etc. I found that all of my knee problems went away. Which isn't to say that you don't have a knee problem, but getting the bike to fit correctly could help to reduce or eliminate the pain.
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Old 10-23-09, 03:04 PM   #4
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I did have the seat high enough that I could only just barely touch the ground when at rest...just the tips of my shoes. The knee pain actually started before the bike riding, it seems to just be exacerbated by activity of any sort. I'm trying some muscle-building exercises for that leg, as the doc says that will help support it. Right now, it clicks when I put weight on it while it's bent, and it refuses to support my weight at anything sharper than a 100 degree angle. It has been doing that since my last job, where I had to crouch down to floor level over, and over, and over again all day >_<
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Old 10-23-09, 03:12 PM   #5
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Fyi, bikeforums requires that you photograph your rig in front of a white garage door in order to represent it with dignity. Welcome to BF and I wish you the best with your projects.
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Old 10-23-09, 03:13 PM   #6
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I did have the seat high enough that I could only just barely touch the ground when at rest...just the tips of my shoes. The knee pain actually started before the bike riding, it seems to just be exacerbated by activity of any sort. I'm trying some muscle-building exercises for that leg, as the doc says that will help support it. Right now, it clicks when I put weight on it while it's bent, and it refuses to support my weight at anything sharper than a 100 degree angle. It has been doing that since my last job, where I had to crouch down to floor level over, and over, and over again all day >_<


Commonmistake thinking that a bike fits since you can touch the ground with your toes. Fit is determined by the reach to the pedals while sitting on the saddle. There should be a slight bend. If you use your bare heel, it should jsut about be fully extended with the heel on the spindle of the pedal. That should get you in the ballpark.

Also the reach while seated to the handlebars is a big factor. Placing feet onthe ground has absolutely nothing to do with fit.
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Old 10-23-09, 03:14 PM   #7
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Don't do seat to ground, that doesn't work for the pedals. A rough estimate is the heal of your foot on the pedal and your knee being almost straight, but knee not locked. A bike fit makes the difference with a professional bike fitter at a bike shop. I still have some knee pain, but not usually until I am over the 40 mile range and haven't been off the bike. I have also had knee injuries from football and basketball 25+ years ago.

Good luck with the bike and have fun.
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Old 10-23-09, 04:12 PM   #8
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Fyi, bikeforums requires that you photograph your rig in front of a white garage door in order to represent it with dignity. Welcome to BF and I wish you the best with your projects.
Haha, as soon as I get it finished, I will do so! It's currently in pieces and covered in gray primer, though, so the white garage door wouldn't do much for it. Do you think it will still manage to look dignified with that white door, once it's the official Mopar Panther Pink color?

Regarding bike fit, I never actually realized that about seat-to-pedals, I'd only ever been told seat-to-ground stuff. Will getting a seat with a longer post help me? I tend to jack the seat waaaaaay up anyway, but the seat I had been riding on was at it's full extension and I definitely couldn't almost straighten my leg out while sitting on it.

If I can't make this bike work for me, I'll probably sell it and try something else. I'm really more interested in old cruising bikes, the curvy kind, which it seems is going to make it really really hard to find one that will accommodate my 37" inseam legs
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Old 10-23-09, 04:50 PM   #9
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Welcome, Good choice on color( I am a Mopar fan)! I hope that bike works for you!
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Old 10-23-09, 04:53 PM   #10
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Welcome! I'm looking forward to seeing what Panther Pink looks like!
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Old 10-23-09, 05:01 PM   #11
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The white garage door always improves the look of a bike.
"Panther Pink?" You be the judge.
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Old 10-23-09, 05:05 PM   #12
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The white garage door always improves the look of a bike.
"Panther Pink?" You be the judge.

!!!!
I approve whole heartedly!

I love the Pink Panther.
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Old 10-23-09, 05:14 PM   #13
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Welcome to the forum.All of us,if I can use that term,started somewhere! Just keep plugging and don't be afraid to ask any questions.We all have experienced what you have and what you will!
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Old 10-23-09, 07:35 PM   #14
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Welcome Hellga!
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Old 10-23-09, 07:38 PM   #15
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Welcome! I can't wait to see your bike complete. On the seat extension thing, be sure you have enough seat post in the frame! I almost got into trouble with that on an previous bike that was too small for me.
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Old 10-23-09, 07:50 PM   #16
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This is panther pink
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Old 10-23-09, 08:12 PM   #17
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Welcome home!! Looking forward to more pink pics. I've got a busted up knee and cycling is pretty much the ONLY thing I can do without totally destroying it. Use common sense and the information you gather here to help you along the path to your goal.

My dad was from around Topeaka. Great place to ride.
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Old 10-23-09, 08:14 PM   #18
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Is this the same?
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Old 10-23-09, 10:12 PM   #19
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Welcome Jana, its great that you want to get into cycling again. After you start riding some and get more adventurous join some of us in the touring forum and the mechanics forum may be a useful resource for restoring your bike. Glad to have you with us.
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Old 10-24-09, 01:51 AM   #20
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Welcome aboard. I too suffer from a clicking knee (my left one), which I now know was a result of my shoes, and carrying some excess weight around. I have a lot of issues finding shoes that fit (my feet are size 14 6E when fit properly), so I used my old pair past their expiry date... One would think I would notice the pain as my knees were eaten away, but lucky for me I have little to no feeling in the lower 2/3rds of my body. My first sign of worry was my left knee would click as I was walking, and by that point I had already done some significant damage. Moral of the story here is take action BEFORE it causes damage.

Anyway, what helped me with my knees was a pair of exercises my doctor suggested. The first one was simple: lie down on your back and lift a (small) weight up with your foot, while keeping your leg straight. I filled up a small plastic grocery bag with beans and hooked it around my ankle, worked great, and the bag would naturally stop as I raised my leg due to the width of my calves.

The second one was a lot more interesting, and I think I got a lot more benefit from it. Sit down on your bed and keep your legs straight out infront of you, so you are forming a 90 degree angle. Put a pillow under your thighs and press down, lean forward towards your toes and pivot your foot towards your torso at the ankle. You should feel the tendon running down the back of your leg tighten, it will get tighter the further forward you lean or the further towards you your toes come. I was told to hold it at a medium tightness for about 10 seconds, then release and repeat 5 times a day.

Those exercises, along with a new pair of walking shoes, made my clicking almost entirely go away.
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Old 10-24-09, 03:17 AM   #21
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I would rock that color on the right frame! The right frame being a Bob Jackson, who used a similar color on some of his builds.

I'm actually quite concerned that your current frame is going to be way too small for you. As someone else with numerous issues in both of my knees, cycling is one of the few things I can do that will give me a good work out that doesn't involve a pool.

While you can usually find a way to get one size too small or one size too big to work for you with some tweaking, your frame honestly loks more like it was built for someone several ijnches shorter than you are, and certainly with less than a 37" inseem. I'm betting your inseem info is your pants length, and that means your cycling inseem is probably as much as 1 or 2 inches more.

Your quest for an ultra cool cruiser may have to swing toward a mens frame, but never fear, they look good in Panther Pink as well!
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Old 10-25-09, 10:44 PM   #22
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Fyi, bikeforums requires that you photograph your rig in front of a white garage door in order to represent it with dignity. Welcome to BF and I wish you the best with your projects.
n00b! That's only in the roadie forum. If you're in SS/FG, then it has to be in front of a graffed up wall and if it's in the Commuter forum, no one cares as long as it's covered in lights.

Welcome OP! Check Classic & Vintage for tips on rehabbing an old bike.
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Old 10-26-09, 07:04 AM   #23
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I hope you saw my post as tongue in cheek.
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Old 10-26-09, 01:21 PM   #24
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I hope you saw my post as tongue in cheek.
I most certainly did Great to find people who both ride bikes AND have a sense of humor! Not many like that around here...
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Old 10-26-09, 03:14 PM   #25
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Than Gyoo Than Gyoo bur mush.
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