I won't bore you with the long and tortuous story that's resulted in the setup my bike currently enjoys. Mind you, I'm still fiddling and the test ride on the latest effort (the one shown) was just up the street and back.
However, things are finally making sense.
The bike is my Trek520.
There's a long, sad story about how I got caught with this one, but in my case, a fine bike has been ruined by buying a frame that's too small. The efforts reported here have been attempts to fix this.
Saddle height has been long settled and is right for me. I may find myself lowering it a tad but I'll have to see how my legs extend on the road before looking at that - we'd only be talking a cm anyway.
Saddle fore and aft has always been an issue. The method I'm using now is espoused by Steve Hogg and is similar to Peter White's. The aim is to have your body balanced between bars, saddle and pedals. KOPS and other such rubbish doesn't come into it. Basically, with your hands on the drops and pedalling in a highish gear (to put pressure in your legs - a wind trainer is very useful sometimes), you remove your hands from the bars. You should be able to keep riding with either none or just a bit of movement on the shoulders. I can now manage that, but the saddle is jammed back as far as it can go on the rails. However, when you consider my svelte figure, I'm guessing the safety airbags around my tummy are shoving my cg forward. But I like it because one of my problems has been hand pain.
Then I tackled bar extension and height. I won't go through all the permutations and their results (it's taken six months of experimentation and a lot of kms), but the setup shown here has a neck extender plus the longest adjustable neck you can buy set up fairly high. The bars are now 2" above the saddle ... and thanks to the too small frame, 10" above the top bar
However, on the bike it seems to make sense. If you look at the photos, it turns out I've got a 45 degree slope on my back when on the hoods - I measured this by putting a grid over the photo and counting the squares and it came out exact Not that the number means anything but I like the symetry of it I was also pleased to note that despite my ample middle, my back was straight in all photos suggesting my posture isn't all that bad, and I've finally got plenty of room when deep into the front of the drops.
Now all I have to do is finalise the brake positions, replace the brake cables (currently they won't even tape to the bars, that's how high the bars have come up) and retape the bars ... again
Yes, going lower will improve the aerodynamics but the price is pressure on my hands. Yes, I do have a death grip on the brakes but no, I don't ride that way - I was leaning against the wall and on a slight down hill slope And yes, I am working on the safety airbags around the tummy
Any thoughts are welcomed, particularly if you either agree or disagree with what I've done. Once I get this bike working for me, I'm going to get a frame made that doesn't need endless extensions bolted to it.