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  1. #1
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    Newbe Clyde - first hill ride

    Hi All,

    I'm new here, first post, been reading for about a month.

    I'm about 50 miles into ownership of my specialized crosstrail disc. Love the bike so far, it's my first bike since being a kid. I'm in solid Clyde territory, 35 years young guy , 5'10", 250#. Been looking for a new way to exercise, hence the bike.

    Yesterday I felt ambitious and tackled a 6.3 mile ride with several hills including a big (?) 575' ascent according to mapmyride.com. Just as I arrived at the big hill I goofed and was late to change gears, ended up getting my chain tangled and stuck between the smallest gear and the frame. With the help of a friendly pedestrian and her dog, we managed to get the chain back on the gear (10-15 minutes of amateur bike mechanic work). With sticky black hands and a bit of frustration I was back on the road.

    I think the hill took about 20 minutes. It was difficult for me but I persevered and made up without having to stop and walk. The whole ride including the chain repair was 1 hour. I'm not sure how my speed compares to others. I don't really care about speed but it is nice to know how I rates vs. to others,

    Anyway, just wanted to give an intro to the community and share my most recent adventure, and get feedback from peers. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Let's Ride! Jimbosays's Avatar
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    Grab a few 'Wet Wipes' (often found for free at your local gas station self-serve island) to toss into your seat bag to help with greasy hands on such occasions (been there - done that with slipped chains!)
    Work Some - Play MORE!
    "The value of good equipment is usually worth more than the cost."

  3. #3
    Just Keep Pedaling Beachgrad05's Avatar
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    Newbe Clyde - first hill ride

    Congrats on taking on the hill. Getting "ready" gear wise comes with experience. I'm thinking of carrying some disposable rubber mechanic gloves for stuff like this.
    http://www.tofighthiv.org/site/TR/Events/AIDSLifeCycleCenter?px=2914622&pg=personal&fr_id=1770

  4. #4
    Senior Member mrodgers's Avatar
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    Oh you city rats, a little grease on the fingers never hurt anyone, lol

    That's quite a hill in my book. How long was the hill?

    As far as speed, I'll let you know I started riding last year and started riding on the road with hills this year, 580 miles on bike trail flat last year and 376 miles this year so far on both flat trails and hilly roads. I typically ride 12 to 15 miles with about 1100 feet of climbing and I only average 8-9 mph on the road with my Giant Escape. Sounds to me like you did pretty good.
    Ride no faster than your Guardian Angel can fly!

  5. #5
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    To prevent the chain from overshifting past the small ring, you might need to adjust the limit screw on your front derailleur: Park Tool Co. ParkTool Blog Front Derailleur Adjustments. It's usually a matter of turning in the screw closest to the frame. If you still have problems, there are also "chain watcher" devices that clamp on to the seat tube and block the chain back onto the small ring in such situations. Most bike shops should have them.

    If you want to know how you rate vs. others, try the Strava smartphone app (or upload to Strava from some GPS cyclecomputer) and strava.com website, just don't get depressed if you find out you are something like 2900 out of 3000 or whatever. Keep on riding consistently, find the right diet that works for you to get the extra pounds off, and you'll find yourself moving up the board and feeling good about progress.

  6. #6
    Senior Member daviddavieboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrodgers View Post
    Oh you city rats, a little grease on the fingers never hurt anyone, lol
    True but still not nice when you have nothing to clean up. I used to cook my chains in paraffin back in the day, not I love the liquid wax. No more dirty chain hands

    Great job on the hill. I know for me a bad shift ruins a great feeling climb.

  7. #7
    Senior Member linnefaulk's Avatar
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    Well done on your first big hill. My husband was ready to throw his bike away on his first big hill. I just dropped it into low and kept pedaling.
    sharon
    when did I become vintage?

  8. #8
    Cat 5 field stuffer bbeasley's Avatar
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    Welcome to BF! Good job on the hill, to get 575' where I live I'd have to put my bike in an airplane.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beachgrad05 View Post
    Congrats on taking on the hill. Getting "ready" gear wise comes with experience. I'm thinking of carrying some disposable rubber mechanic gloves for stuff like this.
    +1 I have been doing this for a while and it works great.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clmason View Post
    Hi All,

    I'm new here, first post, been reading for about a month.

    I'm about 50 miles into ownership of my specialized crosstrail disc. Love the bike so far, it's my first bike since being a kid. I'm in solid Clyde territory, 35 years young guy , 5'10", 250#. Been looking for a new way to exercise, hence the bike.

    Yesterday I felt ambitious and tackled a 6.3 mile ride with several hills including a big (?) 575' ascent according to mapmyride.com. Just as I arrived at the big hill I goofed and was late to change gears, ended up getting my chain tangled and stuck between the smallest gear and the frame. With the help of a friendly pedestrian and her dog, we managed to get the chain back on the gear (10-15 minutes of amateur bike mechanic work). With sticky black hands and a bit of frustration I was back on the road.

    I think the hill took about 20 minutes. It was difficult for me but I persevered and made up without having to stop and walk. The whole ride including the chain repair was 1 hour. I'm not sure how my speed compares to others. I don't really care about speed but it is nice to know how I rates vs. to others,

    Anyway, just wanted to give an intro to the community and share my most recent adventure, and get feedback from peers. Thanks.
    Welcome to the forum.
    Good on you for hanging tough. I would like to say I never met a hill I couldn't walk up but unfortunately I have.

  11. #11
    Senior Member IBOHUNT's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forum and congrats for the accomplishment.

    Quote Originally Posted by bbeasley View Post
    Welcome to BF! Good job on the hill, to get 575' where I live I'd have to put my bike in an airplane.
    Not an airplane, just 12 repeats of the Hilltop Grocery climb

    Quote Originally Posted by Baboo View Post
    Welcome to the forum.
    Good on you for hanging tough. I would like to say I never met a hill I couldn't walk up but unfortunately I have.
    There is no walking, only cross-training.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Black wallnut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stephtu View Post
    To prevent the chain from overshifting past the small ring, you might need to adjust the limit screw on your front derailleur: Park Tool Co. ParkTool Blog Front Derailleur Adjustments. It's usually a matter of turning in the screw closest to the frame. If you still have problems, there are also "chain watcher" devices that clamp on to the seat tube and block the chain back onto the small ring in such situations. Most bike shops should have them.
    Good advice however I'm thinking that his bike is new and if it is he should just take it back to the LBS and have them check the adjustment. Chain catchers do work however can be pricy depending on the frame.

    Welcome Clmason! If you really want to compare yourself to others Strava or Edmondo(sp?) have apps to do that. It might be better to just measure yourself against yourself and those apps will do that as well. There is always someone faster, weather impacts virtual leaderboards. I've capitalized on a good tail wind a time or two, effort was still required though. Hills are tough, they keep being tough, or you are doing it wrong; you will get faster over time.


    Mark

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    Thanks for the warm welcome everyone!

    After that ride I purchased a small bag that fits under the seat and a bike multi-tool. I also added a couple baby wipes in a ziplock bag. Hopefully these will help next time and get me back on the road quickly and happily.

    Someone asked how far the 575' hill was... it was 1.7 miles up.
    A couple suggestions for the apps to see how I compare. I'm scared to look since I saw a pack of spandex skinnies going downhill on my way up. I live in San Diego, bikers here are hard core...I'm sure they destroy that hill without much effort. I'll check it out sooner or later, thanks.

    I was planning to bring the bike back for a checkup in a couple weeks anyway, now I get that going sooner rather than later.

    Holy Cow was I sore the day after that ride. My butt cheeks and quads. My butt bones were fine but my muscles were feelin' it! It feels good though, I am happy with the results. My dress shirt even feels ever so slightly less snug this Monday morning. It was a good weekend.

  14. #14
    Senior Member IBOHUNT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clmason View Post
    Thanks for the warm welcome everyone!

    After that ride I purchased a small bag that fits under the seat and a bike multi-tool. I also added a couple baby wipes in a ziplock bag. Hopefully these will help next time and get me back on the road quickly and happily.

    Someone asked how far the 575' hill was... it was 1.7 miles up.
    A couple suggestions for the apps to see how I compare. I'm scared to look since I saw a pack of spandex skinnies going downhill on my way up. I live in San Diego, bikers here are hard core...I'm sure they destroy that hill without much effort. I'll check it out sooner or later, thanks.

    I was planning to bring the bike back for a checkup in a couple weeks anyway, now I get that going sooner rather than later.

    Holy Cow was I sore the day after that ride. My butt cheeks and quads. My butt bones were fine but my muscles were feelin' it! It feels good though, I am happy with the results. My dress shirt even feels ever so slightly less snug this Monday morning. It was a good weekend.
    1.7 miles at ~6% hurts a lot of folks. Well done for that accomplishment

  15. #15
    Senior Member Mithrandir's Avatar
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    You might consider getting your bike shop to install a "chain catcher" on your bike. I've got one after my chain kept dropping, and it's been great ever since.

  16. #16
    Cat 5 field stuffer bbeasley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IBOHUNT View Post
    Not an airplane, just 12 repeats of the Hilltop Grocery climb
    Rik, Sunday we rode all around that area, 63 miles with 1,200' of climbing. There's just nothing but a few rollers down here.

    It's taken almost a year but I think I'm back to where I was pre broken foot. You know, when I put in that epic racing performance - 40th out of 49

    .... sorry for the hijack

  17. #17
    Senior Member IBOHUNT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbeasley View Post
    Rik, Sunday we rode all around that area, 63 miles with 1,200' of climbing. There's just nothing but a few rollers down here.

    It's taken almost a year but I think I'm back to where I was pre broken foot. You know, when I put in that epic racing performance - 40th out of 49

    .... sorry for the hijack
    @Black wallnut - He said "Epic"

    (has to be the most over used adjective in history. Can't turn on the radio or tv without hearing that word these days)

    I did a social ride on Saturday that was 60 miles with only 5,000' or so. Other guys that showed up for the ride didn't want to climb. Even at that little amount of climbing we ended up waiting.
    Really? A LOW Z2 ride and we gotta wait?

    Moving Time 3:41:24
    Elapsed Time 4:03:50

    /back to your regularly scheduled thread.

  18. #18
    Senior Member mrodgers's Avatar
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    One thing to note, I refuse to walk any hill. Instead, I'd rather stop for a moment, grab a drink, let my heart rate settle for a bit and get back to it.

    I don't have hills that long. Mine are all quarter to half mile long but they are constant. 10 minutes up, 10 seconds downhill, and righht back to uphill again. So I don't get much of a break downhill because I'm at the bottom again in seconds, but on the longer and steeper ones, I stop and rest a bit instead of walking. Next time or 2 I am usually good to make it to/the top without stopping.
    Ride no faster than your Guardian Angel can fly!

  19. #19
    Senior Member daviddavieboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clmason View Post
    My dress shirt even feels ever so slightly less snug this Monday morning. It was a good weekend.
    Great feeling ain't it. almost as good as when you will start having to wear a belt when your pants don't fit any more!

  20. #20
    Senior Member ahultin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clmason View Post
    A couple suggestions for the apps to see how I compare. I'm scared to look since I saw a pack of spandex skinnies going downhill on my way up. I live in San Diego, bikers here are hard core...I'm sure they destroy that hill without much effort. I'll check it out sooner or later, thank
    It was a good weekend.
    The nice thing about living is San Diego county is that there is a very large variety of cyclists at all levels. This makes using an app like strava more fun. At nearly 300lbs I am slow on the climbs but on most am still not dead last
    Also, I don't think I have seen it mentioned yet so I will throw it out there. I once heard and find true the statement, the climbs don't ever get easier, you just get faster on them!

  21. #21
    Senior Member IBOHUNT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clmason View Post
    H

    Yesterday I felt ambitious and tackled a 6.3 mile ride with several hills including a big (?) 575' ascent according to mapmyride.com.
    Sign up for Strava and make a personal segment of that hill if it's not one already. Keep on doing that hill and see how you improve over time. Nothing better than measuring your progress for motivation.

    If you want make that hill a repeat hill where you ride up it, go down then turn around and go back up.

    Here is one I ride to then do 8 of these

    Strava Segment | High Rock

    I'm not on the first page but I'm trying to get there

    Quote Originally Posted by ahultin View Post

    Snip>>

    I once heard and find true the statement, the climbs don't ever get easier, you just get faster on them!
    Absolutely

    Quote Originally Posted by daviddavieboy View Post
    Great feeling ain't it. almost as good as when you will start having to wear a belt when your pants don't fit any more!
    Or, as happened to me, spousal unit goes and gets new britches for work and they are laying on the bed.
    I see them and think... Sweet(!) new britches for Church so I try them on then walk downstairs and thank her for getting me new britches but they are a bit short in the inseam.

    Needless to say she was not(!) amused.....

    Oops. Nice black denim though.

  22. #22
    Senior Member daviddavieboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IBOHUNT View Post
    Or, as happened to me, spousal unit goes and gets new britches for work and they are laying on the bed.
    I see them and think... Sweet(!) new britches for Church so I try them on then walk downstairs and thank her for getting me new britches but they are a bit short in the inseam.

    Needless to say she was not(!) amused.....

    Oops. Nice black denim though.
    Thanks for the laugh!

    I don't have this problem though, my wife only wears skirts and dresses.

    My church clothes must be getting loose because 2 weeks ago my pastor asked if my health was ok, I was loosing a lot of weight. I told him I think it's fine but I am only up to 80-100 miles a week on my bicycle, well see when I get serious!
    Last edited by daviddavieboy; 06-17-14 at 05:21 PM. Reason: format and spelling

  23. #23
    Senior Member moochems's Avatar
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    Been using melted paraffin wax as lube for a while now. Votive candles in a croc pot with some graphite for good measure.

    pros include:
    -mechanical advantage (lubricants rob energy from the chain, paraffin does this the least)
    -extension of life of consumables (oil attracts dirt/particulate which act as abrasives shortening component life)
    -NO STICKY BLACK RESIDUE OR SMUDGES FROM TOUCHING THE CHAIN (flat out true, try it if is concerns you)
    -cheaper (12 dollars for a small can of speciality lube!? No way)

    cons include:

    -necessary to remove chain from the bike (easy enough with a power link)
    -takes slightly longer than spraying the chain with an aerosol can of goo
    -you need to start with a new chain and clean rings/cogs to get full advantage


    notes:
    -degrease the new chain before you first lube in paraffin.
    -google "bicycle chain paraffin graphite Garth" without the quote marks. This user from another forum initially turned me onto the idea, he describes his technique in detail as well as the benefits.

  24. #24
    Senior Member daviddavieboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moochems View Post
    Been using melted paraffin wax as lube for a while now. Votive candles in a croc pot with some graphite for good measure.
    I have cooked chains for 20+years but never added graphite. Pure paraffin is easy and cheap to come by but not sure about graphite. I would think adding graphite would make the chain almost as messy as oil. At what point do you add the graphite to yours? do you cook your chain or do you just melt he candle onto it?

  25. #25
    Senior Member moochems's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daviddavieboy View Post
    I have cooked chains for 20+years but never added graphite. Pure paraffin is easy and cheap to come by but not sure about graphite. I would think adding graphite would make the chain almost as messy as oil. At what point do you add the graphite to yours? do you cook your chain or do you just melt he candle onto it?

    Initially I carefully applied graphite to a new degreased chain before dripping it in wax. I added the left over graphite to the mix for good measure. That user Garth recommended it so I did it. I have not been careful to add more graphite to my croc pot of wax since, but I haven't removed it either.

    Graphite is is like a fine powder, and is slick. Mixed with the wax, it may add a little color to the wax, but does not change it's other characteristics. For example, touch my chain and you won't get dirty despite the graphite.

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