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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
    Wonder if there's a significant upside / downside to this. I hate rim brakes...
    I don't see anyone here forcing you to use rim brakes if you hate them so much. You know... can I say this... you are starting to get annoying... seriously... fish or cut bait. I'm 55 and up until 5 years ago lived in NYC. Not everyone rides Schwinn beaters because its the bike theft capitol of the world. I certainly didn't. There are folding bikes, just saying. Schwinn America isn't run by stupid people looking for a class action lawsuit to finish the company. Just because you can't stop in the rain because your rims are painted doesn't mean no one else riding with painted rims can't. Taking a sanding disc to a perfectly good wheel cannot be argued as a best practice in any scenario one can imagine. Citi-bike is bankrupt and will likely be extant in a year or so. Enjoy them while they last. Are they disc equipped? Probably don't need them, the hysteresis of the balloon tires and the internal drag of the cheap drive-train self limit the speed potential to what ordinary caliper brakes can handle. BTW. Cheap brakes don't stop any worse that expensive ones. Expensive ones will be lighter and the caliper return springs that retract the pad after braking application are much stronger in a better quality caliper. Once the Kool-Stop Salmon pad is applied to the rim and Delta vee begins conversion to thermal coefficient, the actual brand of brake caliper that is pressing it against the rim surface becomes irrelevant.

    H

  2. #27
    Senior Member surreal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
    ...To be clear, when the rims are covered with snow / ice, I can yank on the damn levers with all of my strength (I'm 6'2" and 195 lbs, with gorilla-hands) and the bike makes only the vaguest notion of wanting to slow down slightly. It's really quite terrifying, especially when a taxicab suddenly decides that it wants to be where you are.
    Yeah, as others have told you, that's a problem with painted rims in conjunction with rim brakes. It's not a problem one would normally associate with rim brakes. I'm 6', 245lbs, and I ride all-weather. I have never had a scary braking situation on a bike with unpainted aluminum wheels and rim brakes... from linear pulls to trad'l cantilevers to dual-pivot calipers; the bike stops fine despite the inertia of a big, clumsy guy and the wet conditions.

    FWIW, I'm a huge fan of Sturmey drum brakes, but mostly from a maintenance perspective. They don't need a lot of attention, and I love that. (I run coaster brakes on some bikes for the same reason.) But, the simple truth is: my linear-pull equipped bikes stop better than the drum-equipped bikes, under any/all conditions. I know a lot of ppl love discs, but they need a fair amount of maintenance and the turkey-gobble noises offend me. Most disc ppl will claim that they don't squeal/squawk if they're tuned right, but every time I ride with disc ppl (especially in the wet), it sounds like a pre-Thanksgiving turkey massacre....

  3. #28
    Senior Member surreal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Preaching to the converted , here .. but maybe the OP has to worry about getting their bike Nicked
    and wont make the investment.
    .
    I'm a huge hub generator fan, but I have to confess that I worry about the lights being stolen or vandalized almost every time I lock up in a high-traffic area. It's yet to actually happen, but good Samaritans do show a tendency to switch my B&M headlights from "s" to "0" if I leave it parked at night. They assume it's battery powered, and that I'm draining the juice. The first few times, I was worried that I had a wiring problem, or that my hub or light had died, but now, it's the first thing I check.

    It's tempting to be annoyed by this, but it's merely evidence of good intentions. OTOH, it is proof that passers-by take note of my lights. If the good guys will switch the light off, what will the bad guys do?

    So, yeah, as much as I love generator lights, I'd be afraid to run them on a commuter bike in Manhattan. My solution, so far, has been to stay out of Manhattan.

  4. #29
    Freewheelin' Joe Perez's Avatar
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    I'm honestly a tad surprised by the hostility that's sprung up here recently. And I'm sorry if my wanting to repair old parts rather than buying new ones, or having a different opinion about something offends anyone. It's in my nature to tinker, experiment, and conserve resources rather than solving every problem with my credit card. And if at all possible, I'd prefer to avoid this thread turning into a pissing match about lights. Let it suffice to say that I already own a set of lights and a set of Eneloop NiMH rechargeable batteries for them, that the environmental impact from my continuing to use them is essentially zero, and that is far less than if I were to toss them into a landfill and buy three new dynamo-equipped front wheels (one for each bike) plus a new set of lights.


    Anyway, I spent an hour this evening watching old M*A*S*H reruns and wet-sanding the front rim with 220 grit. Wish I had something a little coarser to start with as this paint is pretty tough, but I got one side of the rim down to clean metal with a nice crosshatch pattern in it.



    Planning to do the other side tomorrow night after I pick up some more aggressive paper, after which I'll report on the results.

    Also took out the brake pad inserts, and found that they''d accumulated a fair amount of white schmutz. I cleaned 'em up a bit with the sandpaper to get back down to clean, green rubber:




    Hopefully this is sufficient evidence of progress to satisfy Leisesturm's "fish or cut bait" ultimatum.






    Quote Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
    There are folding bikes, just saying.
    Yeah, I did go that route initially. Bought a Dahon from a local shop back in November and gave it a shot, but ultimately that wasn't the right solution. Not only did I really dislike the handling and overall ergonomics of it, but even the little one with 20" wheels was just too awkward and cumbersome to comfortably lug around through turnstiles and carry aboard packed, rush-hour PATH trains.



    Quote Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
    Citi-bike is bankrupt and will likely be extant in a year or so. Enjoy them while they last.
    The Canadian company which manufactured the bikes (Bixi) is in bankruptcy and undergoing reorganization, though it's true that CitiBike, while solvent, is also under financial scrutiny. It's a shame, as all they really need to do is double or triple the amount that they charge annual passholders like myself. $95 a year is insanely cheap, especially as compared to the $112 per month that we'd all be paying otherwise for an unlimited-ride Metrocard (subway pass). From what I understand, the planners assumed that far more of their revenue would be coming from tourists buying 24 hour passes for $10, while in reality we resident commuters have turned out to constitute the vast majority of their business.

    Regardless, this is yet another reason why I am presently looking for an alternative in the form of keeping my own bike on the Manhattan side of my commute rather than relying solely upon CitiBike.


    Quote Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
    Are they disc equipped?
    CitiBikes use drum brakes on both wheels. They're not extremely aggressive, however they are pretty much identical to discs in terms of exhibiting consistent performance regardless of weather. That is the specific quality which I am trying to achieve; consistency.





    Quote Originally Posted by surreal View Post
    My solution, so far, has been to stay out of Manhattan.
    Hehe. Well, I'll keep trying to convince corporate that we need to move WPIX to Hoboken, but until then I'm stuck having to cross the river and head up to E. 42nd St every day. It's hard to complain, I do ♥ NY

  5. #30
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    The Green compound Magura's rim brakes use is their most abrasive ones ,

    when I got my bike it had Hard anodized Mavic rims .. braking was not so great .
    2 or 3 down hill long stops , in the rain , was enough to wear thru the anodizing.. after that it was fine..

    Magura also got Kool Stop to mold pads to fit their brakes So I have the salmon compound on that bike , now.

  6. #31
    Freewheelin' Joe Perez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    The Green compound Magura's rim brakes use is their most abrasive ones ,

    (...)

    Magura also got Kool Stop to mold pads to fit their brakes So I have the salmon compound on that bike , now.
    Do I interpret correctly that when you say "the green compound" you're referring to Swissstop GHP II? (I'm not familiar with Magura's lineup)

    If so, I'm extremely curious to hear your opinion of how the two pads compare, both in the dry and in cold & wet conditions.

  7. #32
    Freewheelin' Joe Perez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by acidfast7 View Post
    You must admit that having three bikes is quite wasteful, or?
    A person who lacked the proper context might think that. Allow me to provide you with that context.



    Bike #1 is an electric bike which I built a few years ago. At the time, I was living in a very mountainous region of southern California, and was simply not at a fitness level which allowed me to deal with long 20% grades and elevation changes of >300m over the course of 1-2km, several times each way:



    The blue MX-5 which you see in the garage is mine- this picture was taken before I had gone completely car-free. This bike worked very well for the region I was in- I had a garage to keep it in at night, and during the day I was able to bring it with me into the office. Thus, theft and vandalism were not a concern.



    This past September, I took a job in New York City, and I live in an apartment which is just across the Hudson River in Hoboken, New Jersey. Since I realize you are probably not familiar with the area, here is a map. Point "A" is where I live, and point "B" is where I work:



    As you can see, there are no bridges which connect this part of New Jersey (left) to Manhattan (right), only tunnels. And bicycles are prohibited from entering the tunnels. Therefore, my daily commute is multi-modal. I use one bicycle to get from Point A to the train station, then I take an underground train which passes through a tunnel beneath the Hudson river into Manhattan, then I get on another bicycle to get to work.

    Now, unfortunately, theft is a very serious concern here. I simply could not use Bike #1 for my everyday commute, as it would be stripped in an instant if left parked unattended at a train station. Therefore, it spends most of its time sitting inside my apartment. I use it occasionally on the weekends if I need to travel a great distance or haul very heavy cargo, as it excels at this task.

    Bike #2 , therefore, is the first of the very cheap bikes which I use for my daily commute, the one which lives entirely in New Jersey and which I leave parked at the train station during the day, then use to visit the shops and whatnot on my way home in the evening. It cost me $160, plus another $100 or so in tires and accessory parts:



    For as cheap as it was, I'm quite pleased with this bike overall. It's comfortable and handles well, and while the components on it are obviously not of extremely high quality, they function adequately. Were it not for the inadequate wet-braking performance I would have already bought two more (one to keep in Manhattan, and one as a spare.)




    Bicycle #3 , of course, is the one which I do not own yet. The one that this thread was created to discuss. It will be the one which I keep parked in Manhattan overnight, and use to go between the underground terminal and the television station where I work. At present, I typically grab a CitiBike for that leg of the journey, however that is not without its problems and therefore I intend to keep my own bike there. Depending upon the outcome of this brake experiment, this will either be another bike identical to the red one pictured above, or else it will be something with disc brakes, most likely a Schwinn FourOneOne or similar:






    So, can we please stop bickering and thread-hijacking about wastefulness, lights, batteries, etc? I thought that this forum was more mature than that sort of thing. I am trying to have a serious conversation about brakes, and gain input from those who have actually commuted in adverse weather (rain / snow) with different sorts of brake systems. I know that this may seem disingenuous or unbelievable to those who were raised in climates where rain and snow are common things, but as a former desert-dweller, I really have never had to deal with riding in wet conditions at all until these past few months.

  8. #33
    RIP Sonny RaleighSport's Avatar
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    I was reading this thread at the beginning..I come to check in this morning and this is where you guys went with it? Yeesh. Painted rims=bad for stopping in the wet with rim brakes.. that's a simple fact. Dyno lights are dimmer than good battery lights, debatable but tends to be a fact, Acid has strong opinions also another fact so do most of us for that matter..

    If we're still talking the original subject matter though, I don't see why the OP can't get himself a SA 3 speed with coaster brake hub for that rear wheel.. looking at the admiral it appears to be a 3 speed igh to me, and I might be wrong but isn't NYC fairly flat? Never did spend much time there, but that's what my memory is telling me. OP could replace his rear wheel with a SS coaster also.. those are some pretty cheap easy and waterproof braking options IMO.
    "Seriously is what I want to be, so I put on spandex and show off my gear, my junk, my thing, yes my ding-a-ling."

  9. #34
    Freewheelin' Joe Perez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
    That should help a lot. Frankly, it was dumb on the part of the manufacturer to paint the rims. It was unnecessary to protect the metal and actually cut into their profits.

    When you look at the picture of your pads, you can see the paint transfer to the pads. Once transferred, you have a painted surface, a surface with paint on it and water in between. It's no wonder that your brakes didn't work. You could reclaim the pads above by sanding the paint off them. That will make they work like they are supposed to.
    Yeah, like I said, it's something I never even considered until after I made the first post in this thread. It's been a long time since I owned a bike with rim brakes, and I simply wasn't thinking about it.

    That said, I have already sanded and "reclaimed" the upper of the two pads in that image. I am waiting to do the other one until I strap the paint off of that side of the rim, which I will do tonight. I took that image just to show a "before and after" comparison of the two- one sanded, one not.




    Quote Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
    Of course, your braking is going to be worse in wet conditions than dry but it should be better than it was.
    Yeah, I guess the only question is how much worse. With the CitiBikes and their drum brakes, I am accustomed to the braking performance (the ratio between lever pressure and wheel-braking action) to be totally consistent at all times independent of weather. While I won't claim that they have the best brakes in the world, you can easily lock up the rear wheel of a CitiBike even in dry conditions, and yet I've never felt that they were uncontrollable in wet weather. I've ridden motorcycles for nearly 20 years (going back to when I lived in Florida, where it rains nearly every day in the summertime), and have no problem modulating my brake input in response to road conditions just as the driver of a car would do prior to the universal adoption of anti-lock brakes (I've also never owned a car with ABS.)

    That's really my ideal goal. The brakes should always behave the same way in response to my commands, and leave it to me to adjust the brakeforce in response to road conditions. How close to that goal I can come is what remains to be seen once these wheels are cleaned up.

  10. #35
    Freewheelin' Joe Perez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    If we're still talking the original subject matter though, I don't see why the OP can't get himself a SA 3 speed with coaster brake hub for that rear wheel.. looking at the admiral it appears to be a 3 speed igh to me, and I might be wrong but isn't NYC fairly flat? Never did spend much time there, but that's what my memory is telling me. OP could replace his rear wheel with a SS coaster also.. those are some pretty cheap easy and waterproof braking options IMO.
    I do appreciate on-topic input.

    The Admiral / Wayfarer, as shipped, has a 7-speed cog set and a conventional derailleur on the rear. You're correct in that the island of Manhattan is quite flat (there are some elevation changes, but not much), and a three-speed hub would be entirely adequate. In fact, this is exactly what the CitiBikes have, and it's perfect for the terrain. So, yes, and internally geared 3-speed rear hub would be adequate, though spending money on buying a hub and then paying someone to build a wheel around it (that, I will admit, is outside of my expertise) wouldn't make sense as compared to just buying a slightly better bike in the first place.

    Also, I'd prefer to avoid coaster brakes, quite frankly, as I find them unintuitive and difficult to modulate. And, of course, braking on the rear wheel just isn't a major concern as compared to the front, especially in poor weather.

  11. #36
    RIP Sonny RaleighSport's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
    I do appreciate on-topic input.

    The Admiral / Wayfarer, as shipped, has a 7-speed cog set and a conventional derailleur on the rear. You're correct in that the island of Manhattan is quite flat (there are some elevation changes, but not much), and a three-speed hub would be entirely adequate. In fact, this is exactly what the CitiBikes have, and it's perfect for the terrain. So, yes, and internally geared 3-speed rear hub would be adequate, though spending money on buying a hub and then paying someone to build a wheel around it (that, I will admit, is outside of my expertise) wouldn't make sense as compared to just buying a slightly better bike in the first place.

    Also, I'd prefer to avoid coaster brakes, quite frankly, as I find them unintuitive and difficult to modulate. And, of course, braking on the rear wheel just isn't a major concern as compared to the front, especially in poor weather.
    From what I can see you already like drum brakes, and there's obviously disc brakes as well out there. But the question is how low do you want to go? You can get an x-mart bike with discs for sure.. but are you going to make sure their right and replace any parts you need to? Have a shop do it.. I guess I shouldn't speculate out all that far.. what's the price range you're looking at? What are your mechanical skills like? Would you be willing to use a folder for the train? Is that even an option?
    "Seriously is what I want to be, so I put on spandex and show off my gear, my junk, my thing, yes my ding-a-ling."

  12. #37
    Freewheelin' Joe Perez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    From what I can see you already like drum brakes, and there's obviously disc brakes as well out there.
    I don't have a strong preference for any one specific technology, I just want consistent performance across all weather conditions. It's my experience that both discs and drums provide this equally, and to a far greater degree than any rim-brake which I have yet used. I remain open to the idea that rim brakes can be made to perform adequately, and intend to continue experimenting with the rims and brakes that I have now.



    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    But the question is how low do you want to go?
    I'd be foolish to assign an arbitrary budget number to something like this. My goal is simply to have the cheapest (and least attractive to thieves and vandals) bike from which I can obtain reasonable performance.



    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    You can get an x-mart bike with discs for sure.. but are you going to make sure their right and replace any parts you need to?
    The current $160 Schwinn was purchased from Wal-Mart, as was the $99 Roadmaster which preceded it (the one that was stolen from outside Hoboken Terminal.) And yes, I assume any time I buy a department store bike that I'm going to have to completely disassemble it, lube all the bearings and cables, and re-assemble it correctly. This is not something which a view as a burden, it's an enjoyable way to spend a few consecutive evenings at home with a glass of good stout.

    I have been researching department-store bikes yet again, and while I've found a few cheap ones that come with a front disc brake, they all seem to be very small MTB-style frames with suspension forks and 26" wheels. All else being equal, I'd prefer a rigid 700c which is large enough to suit my height- this is one specific characteristic which drew me to the Schwinn that I have now.




    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    What are your mechanical skills like?
    I am an engineer who has built race cars for Formula SAE (back during my college days) and more recently the Spec Miata and Miata Challenge series as well as SCCA AutoX. I have built several e-bikes for myself and others, done a number of automobile turbo conversions, and until I moved from California to New York had a well-appointed garage complete with lathe, MIG welder, mill, etc. I have literally never paid a mechanic to do anything (car, bicycle or motorcycle) other than mount tires and perform alignments since around the time I turned 18. The only major mechanical component of an automobile which I have never torn down and done a complete rebuild on is an automatic transmission (those scare me), and the only bicycle-related mechanical task which I don't feel I'd be capable of is a from-scratch wheel build, mostly because I lack the proper tools. During 2009-2010, I worked at the Meyer-Werft shipbuilding yard in Papenburg, Germany, as part of the team which designed and built the audiovisual production and distribution systems aboard the Disney Cruise Lines ships Dream (hull # 687) and Fantasy (hull # 688). Prior to that, I worked for ten years as a design engineer for the Harris Corporation in their studio products division, where I did a hell of a lot of prototyping, both electrical and mechanical. Presently, I am the engineering manager at WPIX-TV, where most recently my team and I just gone done building and installing a $260,000 robotic camera system in the main news studio.

    Here is a picture of me from 2011, working on a car owned by 949 Racing which subsequently won its class (E2) at that year's 25 Hours of Thunderhill endurance race, and placed 8th overall out of 83.




    So all in all, while I don't usually like to brag, I feel pretty confident about my mechanical skills.






    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    Would you be willing to use a folder for the train? Is that even an option?
    I already tried this late last year, with a 20" wheeled Dahon. I really disliked the way that it handled (for reference, I'm 6'2" and 195 lbs), and I found that it was still very burdensome to lug through turnstiles and aboard a standing-room-only subway train. Further, having to carry a folder prevents me from also being able to carry anything else with me.

    I'd far rather spend a few hundred every few months replenishing Manhattan-only bikes than constantly having to lug a folder around all the time.
    Last edited by Joe Perez; 04-01-14 at 09:59 AM.

  13. #38
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    I just noticed from your pic that you are using v-brakes. I have never had a problem with stopping power using that style of brake. I can definitely make the bike lock wheels and skid. I can't imagine disk brakes being that much better.

    Now on caliper brakes on my road bike, I actually have never been able to make that bike skid using the brakes.
    I would consider disk brakes on the road bike.

    just as a point of info, I am also a Clydesdale.

    with that said, I would take the advice too just buy an alloy wheel set...

  14. #39
    RIP Sonny RaleighSport's Avatar
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    You seem to have everything covered man, just watch x-marts for sales and what not.. you can usually scoop up 2-3 bill bikes for 50-100 when that happens.

    FWIW: I have, coaster brakes, canti's, v's and calipers only on my fleet. I don't have wet stopping issues but I also pretty much exclusively use kool stop salmons or the multi compound pads, I like to use my coaster on rainy days more then anything but the power loss in wetness on most of my bikes (excluding the steel wheeled ones) is negligible.
    "Seriously is what I want to be, so I put on spandex and show off my gear, my junk, my thing, yes my ding-a-ling."

  15. #40
    Senior Member surreal's Avatar
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    If you can build a Turbo Miata, you can tune up a bike. That being said, even the most mechanically-inclined ppl cannot make a "BSO" into a proper bike. Not on a tight budget, anyway. Which is why I suggest looking for the older, trickle down tech-equipped x-mart bikes. I don't doubt that, with a little bit of love (and a little less paint on the rims), the "Schwinn" from the original post can be made into a reliable, serviceable bike. But, I'd be wary of any x-mart discs in the year 2014, as they're likely to be pretty bad examples of a disc brake. That will likely change in the future, but I don't think BSO discs are "there" yet.

    So, hopefully, removing that paint will do you fine. As you've already surmised, the current pads might be contaminated, so you might want to be ready to get ne pads, too. It'll be cheaper to go that route, either way, and I feel 98% certain that the painted braking surface is he cause of your woes here.

  16. #41
    Administrator CbadRider's Avatar
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    I did some clean up because the thread was getting derailed from the OP's initial question. If you want to have a dynohub vs battery light debate, feel free to start a new thread for that in Electronics & Gadgets.

    Thanks for your cooperation.

    CbadRider
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    Quote Originally Posted by toddles View Post
    So Tom only hires people that are nutty? Is part of the requirement to be a moderator on this site is that you have to be nuts??
    Forum Guidelines *click here*

  17. #42
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Do I interpret correctly that when you say "the green compound" you're referring to Swissstop GHP II? (I'm not familiar with Magura's lineup)

    If so, I'm extremely curious to hear your opinion of how the two pads compare, both in the dry and in cold & wet conditions.
    The inverse is my case.. never had any Swiss Stop pads in my hands .. to have an A/B observation

    Magura HS33 R*| MAGURA

    their color/compound range is (quote) Black: stock pad, general purpose ..

    Salmon (by popular demand, made for the German brakes, in Oregon) Wet , rim friendly,
    they call it their competition pad for polished rims

    Grey for hard anodized and ceramic impregnated braking tracks ,
    And the Green; the competition pad for the same CD & ceramic face rims.

    Just inferring based on appearances .. [FYI 0:54 in of 1:28 video of accessories. ]

    Once I scoured thru the CD coating on the brake track, the green pad was popped off
    and the stock pad popped on, after wearing that pad set down with my daily transportation
    the next set bought was the Salmon color compound..

    as a Porsche fan you may like the HS33 better than the V brakes ..

    (except for the money put out as NY theft candy).
    Last edited by fietsbob; 04-01-14 at 10:57 AM.

  18. #43
    Freewheelin' Joe Perez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaleighSport View Post
    You seem to have everything covered man, just watch x-marts for sales and what not.. you can usually scoop up 2-3 bill bikes for 50-100 when that happens.

    FWIW: I have, coaster brakes, canti's, v's and calipers only on my fleet. I don't have wet stopping issues but I also pretty much exclusively use kool stop salmons or the multi compound pads, I like to use my coaster on rainy days more then anything but the power loss in wetness on most of my bikes (excluding the steel wheeled ones) is negligible.
    Still learning some of the local lingo. I just made the mistake of typing "X-Mart" into a search engine, and now my browser history at work is filled with lots of adult-oriented toystores. So thanks for that.

    On a more serious note, I'm *extremely* interested to hear your opinion on how the dual compound Kool-Stops compare to the pure Salmons. I ask this principally because no LBS in my area seems to stock the salmon-only pads, just the duals, and some of what I've read online was critical of them.

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    Freewheelin' Joe Perez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by surreal View Post
    If you can build a Turbo Miata, you can tune up a bike. That being said, even the most mechanically-inclined ppl cannot make a "BSO" into a proper bike.
    I only just figured out what BSO means, and I'm still not sure whether "X-Mart" is a single thing or a generic stand-in for all department stores (every forum seems to have its own unique slang) though I certainly get what you're saying. And yes, I agree that poor metallurgy and bad machine-work cannot be adjusted out.

    That said, I'm obviously not looking to build a high-class competitive race bike. I have no interest in ever owning anything made from carbon-fiber, or anything CAAD, etc. My taste in transportation machinery has historically tended to fall on the side of what the Brits amusingly refer to as "Cheap & Cheerful," from my old Honda Nighthawk 250 to the early-90s-vintage Mazdas, to the VW Karmann Ghia, to the 914, and so on.

    This bike isn't going to be lovingly pampered, kept in perfect tune and taken indoors at night- it's going to be bounced along on some of the most potholed roads imaginable, ridden through salt and grime and gravel and never cleaned, urinated on at night by the homeless as it's chained up outside a subway station entrance, kicked and vandalized by drunken teenage delinquents, etc. I'm not saying this to sound dramatic, it's just one of the realities of city life.

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    RIP Sonny RaleighSport's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
    Still learning some of the local lingo. I just made the mistake of typing "X-Mart" into a search engine, and now my browser history at work is filled with lots of adult-oriented toystores. So thanks for that.

    On a more serious note, I'm *extremely* interested to hear your opinion on how the dual compound Kool-Stops compare to the pure Salmons. I ask this principally because no LBS in my area seems to stock the salmon-only pads, just the duals, and some of what I've read online was critical of them.
    LoL We use X-mart like commercials use Brand X, you know who we're talking about but we don't have to advertise for them from WM-KM to SC etc.. I never considered anyone actually punching that into their browser but it makes sense.. BSO is Bike Shaped Object, which is what most people will call X-mart bikes.

    About the pads: The dual compounds are fine for all weather bikes and stop pretty well in the wet, but IMO the salmons are where it's at. The experience that made the difference for me was after I upgraded to dual pivot caliper brakes (I'm deeply in love with vintage bikes so single pivots are common in my world) Shimano 105.. prolly 1055 series, I had some much newer shimano 105 oem pads on the calipers and the braking seemed fine, I swapped the pads because of "wear" I swear the salmons the first time I braked nearly sent me over the bars! Night and day against most other brands, I haven't bought a lot of fancy different pads since I found koolstops do what I need and then some.
    "Seriously is what I want to be, so I put on spandex and show off my gear, my junk, my thing, yes my ding-a-ling."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
    I'm honestly a tad surprised by the hostility that's sprung up here recently. And I'm sorry if my wanting to repair old parts rather than buying new ones, or having a different opinion about something offends anyone. It's in my nature to tinker, experiment, and conserve resources rather than solving every problem with my credit card. And if at all possible, I'd prefer to avoid this thread turning into a pissing match about lights. Let it suffice to say that I already own a set of lights and a set of Eneloop NiMH rechargeable batteries for them, that the environmental impact from my continuing to use them is essentially zero, and that is far less than if I were to toss them into a landfill and buy three new dynamo-equipped front wheels (one for each bike) plus a new set of lights.
    Welcome to BF. Sadly there are a small but vocal and sometimes hostile minority who like to pick fights, stray off topic, and strongly vocalize a very specific opinion, even if it is irrelevant tot he topic at hand. You clearly identified a few of them in this thread. If you read other threads you will likely see similar comments from them. I think the best thing you can do is ignore them unless you really want to engage

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
    Anyway, I spent an hour this evening watching old M*A*S*H reruns and wet-sanding the front rim with 220 grit. Wish I had something a little coarser to start with as this paint is pretty tough, but I got one side of the rim down to clean metal with a nice crosshatch pattern in it.

    Planning to do the other side tomorrow night after I pick up some more aggressive paper, after which I'll report on the results.

    Also took out the brake pad inserts, and found that they''d accumulated a fair amount of white schmutz. I cleaned 'em up a bit with the sandpaper to get back down to clean, green rubber:
    I think you are doing the right thing here. Try to fix what you have before throwing money at the problem. Keep in mind that when you are done, you will have normal rim brakes, which are likely not going to break as well when wet as when dry. Kool Stop salmon or similar will help, but most likely there will still be some degradation in brake performance when wet. I think the realistic expectation is that the degradation is minor enough it doesn't bother you. End of the day I think you just have to ride more carefully when its wet.

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
    Hopefully this is sufficient evidence of progress to satisfy Leisesturm's "fish or cut bait" ultimatum.
    Ha, I am not sure if anything will please him. (see my first comment). I actually thought the thread, minus some flaming tangents by a few, was a good and relevant discussion.

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    It seems a lot of your decisions are based on wanting to have a bike that is not a target for thieves.

    If you do decide to spend a bit more, or even if you don't, there are other things you can do to make a new bike look less attractive, if you don't mind making it look worse .

    Beat up bikes have worse resale, less attractive to steal. You can cover up any logos etc to make any brand name parts be hidden...scratch them off, cover with e-tape, etc. Something like tape on the bike might make it look more beat up.

    Just a thought, as if I was leaving a bike on the street I would want it to look as unattractive as possible.

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    Senior Member surreal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
    This bike isn't going to be lovingly pampered, kept in perfect tune and taken indoors at night- it's going to be bounced along on some of the most potholed roads imaginable, ridden through salt and grime and gravel and never cleaned, urinated on at night by the homeless as it's chained up outside a subway station entrance, kicked and vandalized by drunken teenage delinquents, etc. I'm not saying this to sound dramatic, it's just one of the realities of city life.
    You should see what kind of awesome full-rigid 80's/90's MTBs can be had for $150. I know NYC charges a premium on its CL, but here in SJ/Phila, you can get a really cool older mtb for <$100, get some new tires/cables/pads, and run with it. Bikes from that era ranged from "awesome" to "awful", just like they do today, but you can find some true gems that just need a cleaning, a tune-up, and a few replacement parts. I'm building an 88 (maybe an '89?) Panasonic Mountain Cat 3500 into a commuter/camping/fake tour bike; my main commuter rig used to be a late 90s steel Kona. Nicely made frames for cheap; all of the parts that still work are just icing on the cake. And, these tend not to have a lot of theft appeal....

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    Quote Originally Posted by surreal View Post
    You should see what kind of awesome full-rigid 80's/90's MTBs can be had for $150. I know NYC charges a premium on its CL, but here in SJ/Phila, you can get a really cool older mtb for <$100, get some new tires/cables/pads, and run with it. Bikes from that era ranged from "awesome" to "awful", just like they do today, but you can find some true gems that just need a cleaning, a tune-up, and a few replacement parts. I'm building an 88 (maybe an '89?) Panasonic Mountain Cat 3500 into a commuter/camping/fake tour bike; my main commuter rig used to be a late 90s steel Kona. Nicely made frames for cheap; all of the parts that still work are just icing on the cake. And, these tend not to have a lot of theft appeal....
    If you go this route, invest in some Huffy decals or something like that.
    "Seriously is what I want to be, so I put on spandex and show off my gear, my junk, my thing, yes my ding-a-ling."

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    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by surreal View Post
    I know a lot of ppl love discs, but they need a fair amount of maintenance and the turkey-gobble noises offend me. Most disc ppl will claim that they don't squeal/squawk if they're tuned right, but every time I ride with disc ppl (especially in the wet), it sounds like a pre-Thanksgiving turkey massacre....
    They don't take much tweaking at all;less than rim brakes in fact. If your friends' brakes are making that much noise,they prolly don't have them set up right,or are running metallic pads.

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
    Planning to do the other side tomorrow night after I pick up some more aggressive paper, after which I'll report on the results.
    Just check with the custodians at your job and see if you can get a green Scotchbrite pad(or part of one).

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
    CitiBikes use drum brakes on both wheels.
    Nooo...they use Roller brakes. Big difference. Roller brakes suck.

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