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  1. #1
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    A Mild Rant and Couple of NOOB Questions

    I have been hanging around for a couple of weeks and getting a lot of good information from these forums. I really appreciate the openness and friendly reception I have received.

    Here is my rant: When Santa delivers my first bicycle in over fifty years on Christmas morning the weather is going downhill. My area is supposed to have chilling rain or perhaps even snow! I don't think I need to try to ride in the wet yet....if ever. So ends the rant.

    Now for a couple of simple (minded) questions. Back when I rode bicycles as a child we had a chain-guard to keep our pants out of the chain. Nothing like that on my new bicycle (Specialized Expedition Sport) and since it is going to be cool/cold (see rant above) even after the rain/snow moves through the area, is there much danger of catching long pants in the chain? Should I use some sort of clip on them? (I wear cargo pants or jeans most of the time when I'm not in cargo shorts).

    Braking question: When I took this bike for a test drive around the LBS parking lot I noticed that the brakes really work. It surprised me how effective they were. Should I apply both brakes at once or rear/front first? Assuming not a panic stop, of course.

    And for the California people: Have seen the letters GMR several times. I have my suspicions about what they mean but could you enlighten this old Texian who moved back home to Texas from CA in '66?

    Thanks for your patience.
    The Old Sarge

  2. #2
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    Secure your right pant leg with some kind of band.

    Don't forget to secure shoe strings.

    Use both brakes at the same time with same effort.

    Front brake does most of the stopping.

    GMR:
    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...MR-in-High-Def
    Last edited by 10 Wheels; 12-22-12 at 10:57 AM.
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGukLuXzH1E

    Set F1re To The Ra1n ( NY Night Rain Ride)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W7jfcWEkSrI

  3. #3
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    Velcro pants band will keep your pants out of the chain, but also watch how you tie your shoelaces.

    Over 70% of the stopping power is in the front brakes. In a panic or quick stop shift your body weight toward the rear. If you are not used to this type of brake, it is always good to practice stopping at various speeds until you feel comfortable.

    Merry Christmas, I wonder how he gets bikes down the chimney--In pieces?

  4. #4
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    Yell STOPPING, before you hit the brakes if you are riding with another person.

    I wear gloves and a helmet for crash protection.
    Last edited by 10 Wheels; 12-22-12 at 11:15 AM.
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGukLuXzH1E

    Set F1re To The Ra1n ( NY Night Rain Ride)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W7jfcWEkSrI

  5. #5
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    GMR...Glendora Mountain Rd. Some pics if you can't view the video.

    A back road thru the mountains that takes us from Glendora to Mt. Baldy Village.

    Uh-oh, moderator hahaha! PhotoJoe




    Clyde/Athena forum ride




    Most times we do the 8 mile 2500 ft climb. This day we did the 21 mile nearly 5000 ft climb with the Clyde forum.



    Profile for the 21 mile climb and the 8 mile











    Everybody is happy to make it to the top of the 8 mile climb as it is a challenge for most riders.

  6. #6
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    If you can't get out on the bike- Then polish it to get rid of the soot from coming down the Chimney. This cannot be done with the Christmas decorations the wife has put on it so upset her by taking them off first. I use Pledge furniture polish on all my bikes but don't use the wifes can-- Get your own. It is easier on the ears when the wife has suddenly run out of polish.

    Laces tucked into shoes and trousers tucked into socks. But early on in the new year start looking online for the padded bibshorts in Lycra. Bibshorts as they are more comfortable-Padded to keep things cool and dry and Tight Lycra cos it increases your speed as the women start chasing you down the street. Brakes and in general the front brake works best. Most of my braking is done on the front wheel but it can be disconcerting to have the rear wheel lift in panic situations. You will soon get used to it. If the brakes are too effective- don't worry too much. It is not long before a bit of road grime gets onto the blocks and lessens their impact.

    Welcome to the forum. Expect plenty of Posts from you in the near future--Mainly about sore wrists- Numbness in the fingers and What saddle is best for alleviating Butt Ache.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  7. #7
    Banned. DnvrFox's Avatar
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    I use a metal 2/3rds of a circle chromed pants clip (Amazon), and I double tie my shoelaces.

    Both brakes at once, and experiment so you are used to them.
    Last edited by DnvrFox; 12-22-12 at 11:31 AM.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Beanz View Post
    GMR...Glendora Mountain Rd. Some pics if you can't view the video.

    A back road thru the mountains that takes us from Glendora to Mt. Baldy Village.
    Thanks for your response. I loved the GMR video (along with your other videos). When I was a teen in California myself and some friends would often go to Mt. Baldy Village and my first wife had a brother-in-law who lived in Glendora so I am familiar with the area. I also liked the pictures in your response. Y'all are certainly tougher than me to make that ride. And that can't be Photojoe in the first picture, no camera around his neck.
    The Old Sarge

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    Quote Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
    I like those too, but I had to switch over to rubber bands instead because lightning strikes just kept following me around with the steel ones.
    mainlytext.com/bike.html Bicycling in winter, the entertainment version

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by stapfam View Post
    If you can't get out on the bike- Then polish it to get rid of the soot from coming down the Chimney.
    Good idea. Also, as Doug mentioned, since in must come down the chimney in pieces I'll check to make sure it is all there.
    Laces tucked into shoes and trousers tucked into socks. But early on in the new year start looking online for the padded bibshorts in Lycra. Bibshorts as they are more comfortable-Padded to keep things cool and dry and Tight Lycra cos it increases your speed as the women start chasing you down the street.
    I actually bought some accessories from the LBS (10wheels, that included helmet and gloves). I got some padded shorts (loose) and some special underwear for use under my usual cargo shorts/cargo pants. I'll get the tight stuff if I get back to my army weight (from 1966) but that is doubtful.

    Welcome to the forum. Expect plenty of Posts from you in the near future--Mainly about sore wrists- Numbness in the fingers and What saddle is best for alleviating Butt Ache.
    You may see those. I'm really trying to hit fifty posts so I can use the PM feature here. Don't mind sharing my lack of knowledge one on one.

    I appreciate all the responses about the basic braking, shoe-laces and pants questions.

    I hope all have a Merry Christmas and receive everything your heart desires.
    The Old Sarge

  11. #11
    Senior Member Leastbest's Avatar
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    Now that I'm back into cycling the thing I get most is to get on the bike as often as you can. As your fitness improves you'll enjoy it more. Ride and have fun.

  12. #12
    A might bewildered... Dudelsack's Avatar
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    Flip it and slam it. Do it now.

    Ooops, sorry. Just pulled up pictures of the bike. Looks like a fun bike, but no way you can flip that bad boy.

    As far as the weather is concerned, I bet that bike has the thingies on it that allow you to install fenders. If you dress warmly (learned by trial and error, or hanging around the Winter cycling forum) you can get out in most any weather short of an ice storm. People go out in ice storms, too, but that requires a different mindset, a lot of experience, and a latent deathwish.

    I'd suggest that you ride it around the block and leave it at that until nicer weather comes. You'll be surprised/depressed how many of your muscles and soft tissues initially protest your decision to take up cycling.

  13. #13
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    Just wrap the bottoms of your pants around your legs and put them into your socks. Both sides. If you leave the left size loose, you inevitably will get it caught in the bottle cage, or if you have your pump on the seat tube, on that. \

    You don't need bands or clips that way -- and you won't have to worry about putting them on, taking them off, and losing them.

    I should add, also, that you should pull the legs of your pants up about an inch to reduce pressure of the fabric on your knee cap. If you don't give it some slack, you can cause your knee cap to go off track a little, resulting in pain.

    You also can get a chainring guard to fit to the outer chainring, provided it has the required holes and the guard is the correct diameter. Some chainsets come with them attached -- the LX one on my current touring bike did. The advantage here is that you can leave the cuffs of your trousers open, although catching on the bottle cage might still be an issue.

    Machka and I considered riding GMR when we were in California a week or so ago, but the two places where we stayed, San Diego and San Luis Obispo, were just too far away for it to be convenient with the other stuff we wanted to do. It is, however, on my wishlist for another LA visit in the future.
    Last edited by Rowan; 12-22-12 at 01:39 PM.
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dudelsack View Post
    Flip it and slam it. Do it now.

    Ooops, sorry. Just pulled up pictures of the bike. Looks like a fun bike, but no way you can flip that bad boy.

    As far as the weather is concerned, I bet that bike has the thingies on it that allow you to install fenders. If you dress warmly (learned by trial and error, or hanging around the Winter cycling forum) you can get out in most any weather short of an ice storm. People go out in ice storms, too, but that requires a different mindset, a lot of experience, and a latent deathwish.
    The cold doesn't worry me as much as the wet. I figure I can dress warm enough. May need a do-rag under my helmet to cover the bald head.

    I'd suggest that you ride it around the block and leave it at that until nicer weather comes. You'll be surprised/depressed how many of your muscles and soft tissues initially protest your decision to take up cycling.
    I am blessed at having a little used hike/bike trail less than two blocks from the house, and I can reach it through a back way without going on any major streets. It isn't long, about 1/2 mile, but I figure it is a good place to start. I can also ride a few blocks on residential streets, crossing one four lane (not busy except rush hours), and reach another little used hike/bike trail of about a mile circular. So I have some close spots to practice my unused biking skills....if I have any left after fifty+ years off bikes. Since much of our weather will be in the 60f area for much of winter, I consider that excellent riding weather. Come summer, when we may get 30+ consecutive days over 100f it may take a lot of encouragement to get me on a bike.
    The Old Sarge

  15. #15
    Senior Member GeorgeBMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
    Secure your right pant leg with some kind of band.

    Don't forget to secure shoe strings.


    Use both brakes at the same time with same effort.

    Front brake does most of the stopping.

    GMR:
    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...MR-in-High-Def
    I can't say that I secure my laces. But it did remind me of this past summer when a neighborhood kid got to my front yard, slowed down and then just fell over (fortunately onto my grass rather than the street). As he was laying there he began kicking and thrashing obviously incredibly angry over something or other. Went I went down see what was going on and offer to help, I realized that his shoe lace had wrapped around the crack somehow. He's normally a pretty even tempered, pleasant kid -- but not that day!
    --------------------------------------
    bikes: 1992 Cannondale R500, 2012 Trek DS 8.5, 2008 LeMond Poprad

  16. #16
    Banned. DnvrFox's Avatar
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    You don't need bands or clips that way -- and you won't have to worry about putting them on, taking them off, and losing them.
    I wear low cut socks, and even when I wear high socks, levis won't stay in them, neither will the slippery full length lined nylon athletic long pants I wear.

  17. #17
    Saved by Grace lphilpot's Avatar
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    Another option -- one of many, obviously -- is a length of double-sided velcro strip ("rip tie") that can wrap around your pants leg. I keep one wrapped around the head tube of my bike so that it's always there. I can also clip my cellphone to it if needed; it's generally useful for other things, too.

    As to weather, well it's like that in other hobbies as well. I'm an amateur astronomer (currently pretty inactive, though) and it's always easy to forecast the weather after a new scope purchase: Thunderstorms, overcast and rain.
    Len Philpot - 2012 Specialized Tricross Sport
    I start out slow and then taper off from there...

  18. #18
    A might bewildered... Dudelsack's Avatar
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    One other option, and you can trust us, is to admit that you have a great-looking pair of legs and go out and buy a set of bib shorts. Get leggings to wear with them.

    You're going to do this sooner or later. Might as well get it over with.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dudelsack View Post
    One other option, and you can trust us, is to admit that you have a great-looking pair of legs and go out and buy a set of bib shorts. Get leggings to wear with them.

    You're going to do this sooner or later. Might as well get it over with.
    I was avoiding showing the legs until I get faster on the bicycle. Otherwise some of the ladies might catch me....and my wife might catch them catching me.
    The Old Sarge

  20. #20
    Saved by Grace lphilpot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Sarge View Post
    I was avoiding showing the legs until I get faster on the bicycle.
    My bare legs scare children. Unfortunately, they don't seem to have the same effect on dogs.
    Len Philpot - 2012 Specialized Tricross Sport
    I start out slow and then taper off from there...

  21. #21
    Senior Member MinnMan's Avatar
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    These are widely available from your LBS and elsewhere:

    http://www.aliexpress.com/item-img/F...504816738.html

    (I don't know anything about this company, I just wanted to find a link with the picture. The price appears to be for a box of 40 straps).

  22. #22
    Senior Member Bikey Mikey's Avatar
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    I wear regular walking shoes(walking sneakers) since I use toeclips and straps. I double tie my laces and tuck the loops and ends under the shoe laces going from eyelet to eyelet.

  23. #23
    Senior Member David Bierbaum's Avatar
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    Every strap I've tried has ended up just sliding down onto my ankles. Mostly, I just wear sweatpants when riding my bike in the colder weather like today. Roads were dry but quite salty. I wiped down my bike right after I got back. I hope that was enough...

  24. #24
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    Howdy. I'm down the road from you a ways in south Garland.

    They make bicycle tights that fit over bike shorts and also leg warmers that fit on your leg below bike shorts. Both are snug enough they won't get in the chain. That's the long term solution. On the occasions when I wear blue jeans on my bike, I put a big rubber band around the right leg. The reflective angle strips will work for this if they are long enough to go around over your jeans. I have a litlte clip for this purpose, but that clip is older than I am.

    It is quite common when riding to get a big smear of black on your leg from accidentally leaning your leg on the chain. So don't wear light-colored pants that you care about.

    Use both brakes equally. (Occasionally, gently squeeze just one, then the other to make sure both are adjusted right). The front has more stopping capability, which means in a hard stop when the rear wheel locks up, it's the front that's doing the braking. But most of the time, if you're not in panic stop mode, you just use both equally.

    Riding in the rain is not bad if it's warm, but not a lot of fun when it's cold. But if it's rainy, you can usually wait a day or two and have better weather.
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

  25. #25
    Senior Member
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    Guess I will look for tights or leg warmers when I go to the LBS after Christmas....probably after the first of the year. I'll just tough it out for the few days between Christmas and New Years. Jeans may be my attire during the interim. Thanks for the advice neighbor.
    The Old Sarge

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