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Thread: Birdy thread

  1. #51
    jur
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    Quote Originally Posted by msincredible View Post
    I have found that on steeper hills (15-20%) the Birdy really wants to wheelie, particularly when I have a heavy backpack on. To compensate, I really have to get my weight over the front wheel, which feels unnatural ergonomically for climbing. Maybe what you are feeling is related?
    I have an 18% hill on my commute; I don't have the tendency to wheelie. Is it because I have the more forward stempost? Because the geometry which I have looked at in detail, is not dissimilar from a big-wheeled bike, in fact the chain stay is an inch longer than of a typical roadie... so wheelies shouldn't happen easier... unless the stempost is making you sit upright?

    The other issue is, climbing out of the saddle places the body more forwards, so unless you have bar-ends or brake hoods to hold on to, it feels awkward. Bar-ends are a huge help in climbing out of the saddle.
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  2. #52
    crazy bike girl msincredible's Avatar
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    Hmmm, possibly the stempost.

    Also, I should probably define "heavy backpack". When I have it on (with my laptop and portable drives and all the stuff I need for work) it's typically around 25 lbs, which is about 25% of my body weight, and it is larger than my torso. Guess that might have a significant effect.
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  3. #53
    Eschew Obfuscation SesameCrunch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by msincredible View Post
    Hmmm, possibly the stempost.

    Also, I should probably define "heavy backpack". When I have it on (with my laptop and portable drives and all the stuff I need for work) it's typically around 25 lbs, which is about 25% of my body weight, and it is larger than my torso. Guess that might have a significant effect.
    Say, you can hang your backpack off your handlebars in those steep sections. Counterweight!

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    I picked up a used 2006 Silver that came with a plain straight extension on the comfort handlepost with an ahead stem, and it handles very much like a full sized bike. The ability to use whatever stem you want allows for a greater degree af cockpit adjustment. I seem to remember seeing the plain extension listed as an accessory but not sure about availability.

    Also installed an Avid Magnesium V brake set that I had laying about and there are no clearance problems with either functionality or wheel removal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jur View Post
    Bar-ends are a huge help in climbing out of the saddle.
    I actually have Ergon GR2s on my Birdy. The bar ends are not that long, but I'll give it a shot later on today. I knew there was something I was missing, thanks for the tip!

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    In a big hurry, I wheelied away from a stop sign yesterday on my Birdy right in view of a patrol car... had to talk my way out of an exhibition of speed ticket...

  7. #57
    Car free since 1995 pm124's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SesameCrunch View Post
    Say, you can hang your backpack off your handlebars in those steep sections. Counterweight!
    I used to do that. It makes for an inexpensive front rack. Except it mushes the brake cables. So, if you run your brakes tight, this tends to cause them to rub.

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    It has crossed my mind to use my Birdy for light trails and off road. Aside from the gearing, could I throw some knobbies on there and use it for that purpose? I've seen off-road tires offered for the Birdy, but I can't seem to find a place that actually sells it as an accessory. Changing to the stiffer elastometer also seems like it would be a good idea as well. Any thoughts?

  9. #59
    crazy bike girl msincredible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffy1021 View Post
    It has crossed my mind to use my Birdy for light trails and off road. Aside from the gearing, could I throw some knobbies on there and use it for that purpose? I've seen off-road tires offered for the Birdy, but I can't seem to find a place that actually sells it as an accessory. Changing to the stiffer elastometer also seems like it would be a good idea as well. Any thoughts?
    I've tried MTBing on the Birdy on both fire road and single track.

    Knobbies would be great if you can find them, I only had the stock tires.

    The other issue is clearance. I have to carry over big tree roots, loose sand, and big rocks.

    Calgary's Fish Creek Park


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    Water Dog Park
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    Quote Originally Posted by msincredible View Post
    Hmmm, possibly the stempost.

    Also, I should probably define "heavy backpack". When I have it on (with my laptop and portable drives and all the stuff I need for work) it's typically around 25 lbs, which is about 25% of my body weight, and it is larger than my torso. Guess that might have a significant effect.
    I've got a Rixen Kaul/Klickfix rucksack and bracket that attaches to the seatpost. With my laptop and other bits it can be pretty heavy and so far the bracket seems okay with the weight. And when commuting, the Respro rucksack cover is a great safety feature as it lights up like a Christmas tree when headlights shine on it.

    http://www.dotbike.com/ProductsP2121.aspx?TRACK%3dDPL
    http://www.dotbike.com/ProductsP2122.aspx?TRACK%3dDDI - this is the new version of the one I have

  11. #61
    Car free since 1995 pm124's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by msincredible View Post
    Water Dog Park
    You seem to have captured a UFO in this picture. I hope you do not have any blank spots in your memory of this ride.

    I've done extensive off road riding as well. It shines on pack dirt trails, but not very useful for deep ruts, powdery dust, deep mud, and so forth. Though moderate mud doesn't seem to matter much. It is an outstanding all around bike for international touring.

    I can't afford the Intego version, so I rely on 2 chainrings in mountainous areas with steep climbs. Kind of a ghetto solution b/c the chain falls off when the bike is folded. This is a problem b/c one always folds right before eating, and not everywhere in the developing world has a sink with soap available. (Or in NYC for that matter.)

    With my chainline, the bike automatically shifts onto the low front ring when progressing to low gears and then back to the high ring when going into high gears. Not for everyone, but cheap!

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    Quote Originally Posted by pm124 View Post
    You seem to have captured a UFO in this picture. I hope you do not have any blank spots in your memory of this ride.

    I've done extensive off road riding as well. It shines on pack dirt trails, but not very useful for deep ruts, powdery dust, deep mud, and so forth. Though moderate mud doesn't seem to matter much. It is an outstanding all around bike for international touring.

    I can't afford the Intego version, so I rely on 2 chainrings in mountainous areas with steep climbs. Kind of a ghetto solution b/c the chain falls off when the bike is folded. This is a problem b/c one always folds right before eating, and not everywhere in the developing world has a sink with soap available. (Or in NYC for that matter.)

    With my chainline, the bike automatically shifts onto the low front ring when progressing to low gears and then back to the high ring when going into high gears. Not for everyone, but cheap!
    What tires do you run?

  13. #63
    jur
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    I'm just back from a 4-day 240km tour in south-western Victoria, with me on my Birdy and SWMBO on her Reach.

    Very impressed. we stayed in accommodation for this tour so didn't carry camping gear. We each had 2 small panniers. My stuff was only a scanty 7kg, including the panniers.

    The extra weight of the panniers on the frame made the ride even smoother. It felt like I was riding on soft balloon tires.

    The Alivio gear shifting is wearing out far more rapidly than I expected. When new, it worked just fine. Now at 1600km, I have to push the shifter lever way past the click point to get the gear to engage. It works best if I downshift 2 clicks and then upshift 1 - that gives me a guaranteed shift. A single click just results in a grinding noise. If I adjust the shifter to give a guaranteed downshift, then it won't upshift. The shifter seems to have changed its pull ratio.
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  14. #64
    jur
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    Quote Originally Posted by msincredible View Post
    Water Dog Park
    Apparently those aliens investigated folding the bike too; when they unfolded it, the gear cable formed a big loop. They didn't realise the cable has to go back to the front.

    Looking at the saddle angle and comparing against your first pic, they also adjusted that...
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    Quote Originally Posted by jur View Post

    The Alivio gear shifting is wearing out far more rapidly than I expected. When new, it worked just fine. Now at 1600km, I have to push the shifter lever way past the click point to get the gear to engage. It works best if I downshift 2 clicks and then upshift 1 - that gives me a guaranteed shift. A single click just results in a grinding noise. If I adjust the shifter to give a guaranteed downshift, then it won't upshift. The shifter seems to have changed its pull ratio.
    I've found the gears on my Touring to be similar, which is the reason I'm about to upgrade (parts listed in another thread). That aside I'm enjoying it like you.

  16. #66
    Car free since 1995 pm124's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffy1021 View Post
    What tires do you run?
    When touring, Marathons. When commuting (all pavement), Stelvios.

    Congratulations world!

  17. #67
    crazy bike girl msincredible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jur View Post
    Apparently those aliens investigated folding the bike too; when they unfolded it, the gear cable formed a big loop. They didn't realise the cable has to go back to the front.

    Looking at the saddle angle and comparing against your first pic, they also adjusted that...
    yeah, sometimes I am not that careful when I put it together after a flight. I just adjust it as I go.
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    Quote Originally Posted by pm124 View Post
    When touring, Marathons. When commuting (all pavement), Stelvios.

    Congratulations world!
    These are one the only knobbies I could find in 355. Do you think they're worth checking out or will even fit with enough clearance? Should I just stick with Marathons for light trails?

    http://www.schwalbe.co.uk/c2-1054-sc...-mad-mike.html

  19. #69
    jur
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    I seem to have infected the local wildlife here...

    a workmate whose 700c hybrid bike (see almost last pic in my ride to work photo essay in sig linky) has a busted rear wheel, has borrowed my Yeah for a week. This week he went out to St Kilda Cycles and bought a Birdy! Older frame still, with the 27sp hub geared setup, Birdy Blue. They are on special as the older frame style has been discontinued.

    27sp! Jealous! At least I have the monocoque frame...
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  20. #70
    Car free since 1995 pm124's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffy1021 View Post
    These are one the only knobbies I could find in 355. Do you think they're worth checking out or will even fit with enough clearance? Should I just stick with Marathons for light trails?

    http://www.schwalbe.co.uk/c2-1054-sc...-mad-mike.html
    The will definitely fit. The only possible clearance issue is with the front folding rack, which rides close to the front tire. If you don't have a lowrider, should fit.

    As to the question of which tire to use, that's your call. Knobbies are one of the few things that will significantly slow a bike down. I would only use them if you plan on spending significant time in mud or otherwise really need them.

  21. #71
    crazy bike girl msincredible's Avatar
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    Holy Monkeys! I'm from Singapore! I need ta work out on my Brommie i guess....


    Ride often in sg?

  23. #73
    crazy bike girl msincredible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stormclad View Post
    Ride often in sg?
    When I'm in town. I'll be here the whole week (leaving Sunday morning) and was planning on doing more riding when I get free time (pretty busy work schedule though).

    Trying to decide where to go on Saturday, my free day.
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  24. #74
    Car free since 1995 pm124's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by msincredible View Post
    Did 56 miles on my Birdy today.
    I just got back from 64 miles. Needed monkeys, but it was nice enough in the East Coast US fall.
    Last edited by pm124; 11-09-08 at 07:46 PM.

  25. #75
    Wheres my snuggie? taxi777's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by msincredible View Post
    Did 56 miles on my Birdy today. ]
    So all you've done is "monkey around?'

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