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Old 11-18-13, 10:52 PM   #1
LiteraryChic
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Mudflaps

Just a quick thought on mud flaps. I have the Verlo Orange Leather Mudflap for Lola, and the shop installed it on the front instead of the rear. I understand that in the scheme of things it does not matter, but I'm curious where (if you have them) are your flaps on your mudguards?

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Old 11-18-13, 11:16 PM   #2
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Just a quick thought on mud flaps. I have the Verlo Orange Leather Mudflap for Lola, and the shop installed it on the front instead of the rear. I understand that in the scheme of things it does not matter, but I'm curious where (if you have them) are your flaps on your mudguards?

It does matter if only one is to be installed and the intent is to keep the most slop off your self and/or bike; your shop made the right decision.
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Old 11-18-13, 11:16 PM   #3
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In the scheme of things it's much better on the front, because it'll keep your feet, and the bike, cleaner.

EDIT: I Like To Bike beat me to it!
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Old 11-18-13, 11:47 PM   #4
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If you have a rear rack that will essentially block the spray from the rear wheel, then all you really need is a fender up front that has decent coverage.
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Old 11-19-13, 02:43 AM   #5
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A rear rack doesn't do nearly as much as even a clip-on rear fender. Full fenders, front and back, with mudflaps as needed to extend them a bit lower are what you really need to help keep both you and your bike clean and relatively dry.
The shop installed it where it most likely will be of more use if your intent is to keep water and road muck off you and your bike. If you ride with lots of other cyclists, it may help to have another mudflap on the rear fender- most production fenders I've seen are long enough to keep the spray off the rider.

I only have one; and it is on the front fender.
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Old 11-19-13, 06:59 AM   #6
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I have them, front & rear. Mine are stealth reflective.
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Old 11-19-13, 08:27 AM   #7
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I'm gonna have to get some of those naked lady mudflaps for my new fenders.
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Old 11-19-13, 10:29 AM   #8
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I'm curious where are your flaps?
I keep 'em in my wife's pants:

Big Bottoms, Big Bottoms, talk about mudflaps, my gal's got'em!
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Old 11-19-13, 11:08 AM   #9
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Front for me.
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Old 11-19-13, 01:45 PM   #10
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A mudflap on the rear is extra weight and only encourages wheelsuckers, so no to the rear, yes to the front.
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Old 11-19-13, 02:03 PM   #11
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I understand that in the scheme of things it does not matter, but I'm curious where (if you have them) are your flaps on your mudguards?
Actually it does matter.
As others have noted the front is to keep your feet as dry as possible and the rear allows a rider in a paceline to draft efficiently without being drenched or blinded. For commuters the front is primary. My mudguards have both molded in.

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Old 11-19-13, 02:32 PM   #12
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Mine are in the dumpster. Your feet and legs get wet anyway and the bike gets dirty with fenders.

Follow Rule #9 , with Rule #5 close behind.
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Old 11-19-13, 03:40 PM   #13
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Mine are in the dumpster. Your feet and legs get wet anyway and the bike gets dirty with fenders.

Follow Rule #9 , with Rule #5 close behind.
I'd love to argue, but... here's my bike with fenders and mud flaps:




But here's what my legs looked like after a recent commute home (including several miles of unusually muddy gravel road):




It was dark by the time I got home, and still raining. I knew the bike was a mess so hosed it off, but I didn't see my legs until I got back in the house. I bet it would have been even worse without the fenders and flaps, though.
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Old 11-19-13, 04:23 PM   #14
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But here's what my legs looked like after a recent commute home (including several miles of unusually muddy gravel road)
What's coming down from the sky is just rain, what your tires are throwing up from the road isn't.
Know why the Brits euphemistically call them "Mudguards"?

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Old 11-19-13, 05:03 PM   #15
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Look at his first picture. Full coverage fender, mudflap beyond line from tire contact to pedal at low point.

What are you going to do?? Stick your legs behind the fenders????

That's why I don't mess with them. You're gonna get wet, the bike will get dirty. Suck up and deal with it.

I do wear Planet Bike toe covers. They work better than fenders----my feet stay dry.
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Old 11-19-13, 05:13 PM   #16
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I do wear Planet Bike toe covers. They work better than fenders----my feet stay dry.
I wear plastic grocery shopping bags. Feet also stay dry. 100% less cost (and attractiveness).
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Old 11-19-13, 05:34 PM   #17
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I tried the plastic bags--the velcro/elastic leg bands hold them up quite well. My feet did stay dry, but they got hung up in the cleats. I tried them inside the shoe but, my feet sweated, then got cold.

I don't know that the Planet Bike covers are better than any others. They're the only ones that I've used.
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Old 11-19-13, 06:25 PM   #18
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Your feet and legs get wet anyway and the bike gets dirty with fenders.
Fenders aren't a force field repelling water & crud, if it's raining out and one goes cycling one gets wet.
Limiting what your tires throw up from the road is what fenders do, longer ones of an appropriate width with 'flaps do it best.
Perfect? No. Effective, certainly.

Consider what's coming down from the sky, it's just rain. Wearing proper kit like a traditional rain cape or a modern rain suit and shoe covers keep a rider reasonably dry and comfortable on a long commute or a Brevet.

What's coming up from the road is not just rain, today it's a filthy chemical mixture coating rider and machine. Not what I'd care to wear even on my rain gear.
Riders can avoid most of the toxic soup flying up from spinning tires with properly fitted mudguards, that is certainly not in question.

The term "mudguard" goes back to the days when draft animals were common on the roadways, the euphemism was "mud" not being flung up on the rider. It was sh_t and not a welcome deposit on clothing or spun up into one's mouth. Same, same w/ today's vehicular sh_t.

At speed the front tire can spin up a blinding spray, especially at night, fenders prevent that and allow a paceline to form safely in wet conditions.Club riders and Randonneurs travel at pace in bad weather. A properly fitted rear fender w/ 'flap shows respect for others on a ride.

The morning after a rainstorm the fender equipped cyclist rides dry on the wet streets that soak the mudguard-less.

Cleaning, maintenance and component wear on a fender equipped machine are less in the rainy season than a bare bike.
Riding kit same, same.

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Old 11-19-13, 06:41 PM   #19
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I tried the plastic bags--the velcro/elastic leg bands hold them up quite well. My feet did stay dry, but they got hung up in the cleats. I tried them inside the shoe but, my feet sweated, then got cold.
What do you mean 'got hung up'? I didn't use straps, I just tied the handles around my ankles. Depending on the size of the bag, I sometimes the handles can reach around and tie intact, sometimes I need to rip one end off the body of the bag. Then I don't bother with a cleat hole, I just clip in and the bag is thin enough to might as well not be there.

Are you saying like when you unclipped you were still stuck to the pedal via the bag? That hasn't happened to me yet, but good to know it might so I won't be taken by surprise!
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Old 11-19-13, 07:04 PM   #20
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No. I guess hung up isn't just right. They'd just flap around and catch in a new spot every time I'd clip in. They were fine until I got to town then ended up all torn and flapping around.

Nothing dangerous, like you said they're to thin to cause harm.
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Old 11-19-13, 07:36 PM   #21
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Without fenders I get water in my bike frame, and a skunk stripe up my back. With fenders, I don't.
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Old 11-20-13, 09:45 AM   #22
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Fenders make a big difference in the rain and on wet roads.

As said already, rainwater fresh from the skies is fairly clean, though it has picked up some atomospheric dust as it fell. Water sprayed from the road is very dirty, it carries mud, grit, tire rubber, debris, oil, dog poo, everything on the road and the neighboring lots.

If you regularly ride a bike without fenders in the rain, after a week you'll see a film of sticky, slightly greasy gray schmutz coating the bike. It doesn't rinse off, you have to wipe, use soap and a towel or brush, and your hands get dirty. If you leave the same bike just sitting out in the same rain, after a week there will not be a schmutz layer. That gray schmutz comes from road spray, not from mere rain.

Without fenders, your tires pick up the dirty road water and spray it onto your back and butt, up your crotch, onto your legs, into the brakes and bottom bracket and all over the bike. The front tire throws the dirty water up and forward, and you ride through the cloud of spray.

Good fenders with mudflaps stop most of the road spray from your tires, before it hits you or your bike. Your feet will still get road sprayed. You and the bike will still get rained on. But after a week of riding in the rain, you'll see that while plenty of gray schmutz film has collected on your rims and tires, and some is on the chainstays and lower downtube, most of the bike is schmutz-free or at least low-schmuitz.

I'm in Portland OR and ride to work every day of the year, rain or shine. It rains like 150 days a year here. Every bike I ride regularly in the winter has fenders. Same with most bikes you'll see in the winter here - I mean most commuter bikes, not the racer-wannabe bikes, the hipster singlespeeds propped outside the cafe, or the BMX being pedaled with low rider jeans.

I admit I've resisted installing the really long, pavement-brushing mudflaps, but that is purely for aesthetic/vanity reasons.

Last edited by jyl; 11-20-13 at 09:52 AM.
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Old 11-20-13, 09:55 AM   #23
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I'm in Portland OR and ride to work every day of the year, rain or shine. It rains like 150 days a year here. Every bike I ride regularly in the winter has fenders. Same with most bikes you'll see in the winter here - I mean most commuter bikes, not the racer-wannabe bikes, the hipster singlespeeds propped outside the cafe, or the BMX being pedaled with low rider jeans.

I admit I've resisted installing the really long, pavement-brushing mudflaps, but that is purely for aesthetic/vanity reasons.
If I lived in Portland I'd get fenders too, and frankly with that much rain I'd be much much less interested in bike commuting (or living). But here in San Diego we get like 10 rainy commutes/year, which I'm willing to put up with, without fenders or even a waterproof jacket. As I tell my amazed co-workers, I have the superpower of being waterproof. I can get all kinds of water and mud dumped on me, towel it right off and I'm good as new! Even the days that don't rain, I purposefully rinse my whole naked body with warm water, just to prove how awesome I am.
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Old 11-20-13, 10:24 AM   #24
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Just a quick thought on mud flaps. I have the Verlo Orange Leather Mudflap for Lola, and the shop installed it on the front instead of the rear. I understand that in the scheme of things it does not matter, but I'm curious where (if you have them) are your flaps on your mudguards?

Both. Mine are homemade from plastic milk bottles.

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Old 11-20-13, 02:28 PM   #25
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I'm in Portland OR and ride to work every day of the year, rain or shine. It rains like 150 days a year here. Every bike I ride regularly in the winter has fenders. Same with most bikes you'll see in the winter here - I mean most commuter bikes, not the racer-wannabe bikes, the hipster singlespeeds propped outside the cafe, or the BMX being pedaled with low rider jeans.

I admit I've resisted installing the really long, pavement-brushing mudflaps, but that is purely for aesthetic/vanity reasons.
I get about twice as much rain as Portland. I'm certainly not taking my fenders off until next summer. But hey, I think mine look good! I can't even imagine how muddy I would have been without them.
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