Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

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.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 02-17-12, 03:50 PM   #1
tony_merlino
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
tony_merlino's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Northeastern NJ - NYC Metro Area
Bikes:
Posts: 795
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Look, Ma - no hands! Not.

For the last couple of years, I've been riding an early '90s vintage Specialized Hardrock, which I've fitted up with fat road tires, fenders, Wald folding baskets, a stem extender and trekking bars (to give an upright ride). I've noticed that the bike has always been more fatiguing to ride than any other bike I can remember riding, but I thought it was just me, because I was so much heavier than when I used to ride a lot. Today I decided to make the experiment of trying to ride with no hands, which is something I always used to do.

I couldn't do it. The bike won't track straight unless I'm holding the bars. Is this something common to MTB geometry, or should I suspect some other issues that I might be able to correct? I've found that the bike actually seems more stable when it's loaded up with 20-30 lbs of groceries.
tony_merlino is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-12, 04:05 PM   #2
chefisaac
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: cherry hill, nj
Bikes:
Posts: 6,145
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
could be weight distribution and proper balancing but I have no clue.
chefisaac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-12, 05:44 PM   #3
Mr. Beanz
Banned.
 
Mr. Beanz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Upland Ca
Bikes: Lemond Chambery/Cannondale R-900/Trek 8000 MTB/Burley Duet tandem
Posts: 20,030
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Might look into the headset. If the bearing race has a pit, it tends to stick and does not move freely. You can tell by lifting the front end off the ground and swinging the hb's left to right slowly. Feel for the sticking point.

I had to replace the hs on my tandem for that reason. I thought I was just tired but the hs was sticking causing a counter steering feel.

I ride rather well with no hands. But going from one roadie to another or to the mtb, takes a few minutes to get it under control. Ya never know.
Mr. Beanz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-12, 05:47 PM   #4
bobdell
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Lakeland, Fl
Bikes:
Posts: 281
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Can you roll the bike in a straight line walking beside it and just holding the back of the seat?
bobdell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-12, 10:53 AM   #5
sstorkel
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Bikes: Cervelo RS, Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Pro, Schwinn Typhoon, Nashbar touring, custom steel MTB
Posts: 5,427
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
I would think it should be possible to ride most mountain bikes no-handed. I can ride both of my mountain bikes no-handed without any problems.

That wasn't always true, though. When I first built-up the frame I welded, it was nervous as heck and would barely track straight even with my hands on the bars. Turned out I'd installed a fork that was too short: the frame was designed for a 100mm suspension fork and I'd installed a rigid fork that was equivalent in length to an 80mm suspension fork. That effectively steepened the steering angle and reduced trail, which lead to the nervous handling.

As others have pointed out, there's a lot that goes into handling in addition to the geometry of the frame: weight distribution, frame straightness, headset condition, fork length, fork straightness, etc.
sstorkel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-12, 10:57 AM   #6
himespau 
Senior Member
 
himespau's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Louisville, KY
Bikes:
Posts: 9,477
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 51 Post(s)
I'm with you on that. I have a 90's mtb that I've converted into a drop bar commuter and I can't go no hands either. If I try pushing it with the saddle the fork turns one way or the other so I always have to push by the stem if I'm pushing it with just one had. Don't know if the design isn't set up to have the weight of the bigger bars more forward or what. If that's the case, I'm sure the 140 mm stem isn't helping any.
himespau is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-12, 03:49 PM   #7
RichardGlover
2nd Amendment Cyclist
 
RichardGlover's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Cary, NC
Bikes: Schwinn 2010 World Street, Handsome Speedy w/ SRAM Apex
Posts: 1,036
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Some geometries don't handle front loads well. Others don't handle rear loads.

Google / wiki 'Trail' with regards to bicycle geometry for more info. Too much or too little can impact a bike's handling, especially when you add a load to the front.

Also... with adding stuff to the front - fenders, rack, basket, etc.... it's possible that something attached to the fork crown is rubbing the bottom cup of the headset (at the bottom of the head tube). That'll make any steering feel 'sticky', and make it impossible to ride no-handed for more than a few feet (because you won't be able to micro-adjust steering by adjusting your body weight).*

* - When I first built my new bike, my front caliper cable hanger rubbed like this. Made the maiden voyage to work a bit of a chore. Tore it down and filed it down before I went home that day. Have since added spacers to give me a bit more clearance.
RichardGlover is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-12, 04:20 PM   #8
tony_merlino
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
tony_merlino's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Northeastern NJ - NYC Metro Area
Bikes:
Posts: 795
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Interesting replies, thanks. The weight, right now, is mostly in the back - I intend to add a front rack and removable basket, but right now there are only the Wald folding baskets on the rear rack. There are fenders, but they're really light. The stem extender and trekking bars probably add some weight, but not much.

And no, it won't steer straight if I try to push it along from the seat. It seems to pull to the left. I'll take a look and see if anything's rubbing.
tony_merlino is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-12, 04:49 PM   #9
bud16415
Senior Member
 
bud16415's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Erie Penna.
Bikes:
Posts: 1,097
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 24 Post(s)
It’s really quite simple. Go to this web page and read the explanation. Make sure you read to the very end to get a full grasp of why riding a bike is easier than being a physicist.



http://sites.google.com/site/bikephysics/english-version/no-hands-riding-equilibrium-conditions
bud16415 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-12, 11:35 PM   #10
nymtber
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: NY state
Bikes: See Signature...
Posts: 1,294
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Of all bikes I have owned, my 2006 Specialized Allez road bike was by far the best no hands bike. Went riding with my brother once and on a backroad I just sat up and cruised for a while with no hands and he asked how I was able to for so long. Told him it was all in the bike.

Seems now I can't ride no handed anyway. Oh well, I don't really need to...

Check headset bearings. Also, how are the hub bearings? have they been re-packed recently? If not, do so! I re-pack my bearings every 2-3 years, overkill for my amount of riding, but it takes maybe an hour to do two hubs (I never rush) and I have a 1lb tub of Park grease, so...why not?
nymtber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-12, 11:52 PM   #11
maidenfan
Senior Member
 
maidenfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Portland, Or
Bikes:
Posts: 570
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Beanz View Post
Might look into the headset. If the bearing race has a pit, it tends to stick and does not move freely. You can tell by lifting the front end off the ground and swinging the hb's left to right slowly. Feel for the sticking point.

I had to replace the hs on my tandem for that reason. I thought I was just tired but the hs was sticking causing a counter steering feel.

I ride rather well with no hands. But going from one roadie to another or to the mtb, takes a few minutes to get it under control. Ya never know.
Had a similar problem and it had to due w/an improperly adjusted headset. Definately check that.
maidenfan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-29-12, 07:07 AM   #12
Buck_O
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Olympia, WA
Bikes: Felt F75
Posts: 168
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Its all about Rake and Trail.

I can ride no hands on my friends Felt Z100 (compact geometry) all day long. I can only do it for about 200 feet on my F75 (race geometry), and it gets a wobble on.
Buck_O is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:00 PM.