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  1. #1
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    How much to fenders benefit the bike ?

    I'm trying to make a decision between a frame with fender clearance and one without. I love riding in the rain and I love getting wet. If I got fenders they wouldn't be for me.

    How much do fenders actually benefit the bike itself? How effective are they at keeping road grit off the drive-train?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Fat Guy Rolling dcrowell's Avatar
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    The fenders will help keep road grit out of your drivetrain. That's a good thing. Also, riding in the rain you will still get wet. That's good, and can be fun. Tasting road grime that the front wheel throws up at your is not fun.
    Car-Free IT Geek
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    Older than dirt CCrew's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dcrowell View Post
    Tasting road grime that the front wheel throws up at your is not fun.
    Or the skunk stripe up your back.

  4. #4
    Beer and nachos today!
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    Quote Originally Posted by dcrowell View Post
    Tasting road grime that the front wheel throws up at your is not fun.
    Quote Originally Posted by CCrew View Post
    Or the skunk stripe up your back.
    QFT. That isn't just water spraying off of your tires, it's water mixed with whatever crudliness is on the road- oil, antifreeze, dirt, etc. And it may not come out of your clothes in the wash...

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    And all the stuff mixed with rain water that splashes on your bike also splatter your water bottle.
    Whether you think you can, or think you can't, you're probably right

  6. #6
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    If you ride MUP's and the dogs have been out....

    On my bikes the fenders (and mud flaps) keep water spray off the drive train, especially the BB. FWIW most of my bikes still use the old style bearings and cups so keeping them as clean as reasonably possible helps keep maintenance time down. Chain guards and chain cases help too.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

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  7. #7
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    I decided to put fenders on my recumbent bike after riding through farm country after a rain storm getting my face splashed with the runoff from the cow barnyards I was riding past. Yuk!

  8. #8
    Unobtanium-Based Lifeform calamarichris's Avatar
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    The only thing worse than getting rained on all day, every day of your four-day tour, is riding on the scenic and idyllic back roads of Germany and Belgium and tasting the various flavors of pig manure tracked onto those scenic & idyllic roads.

    (It was hard getting hotel rooms on that trip too. )

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    If the fenders WERE for you, you can get clip-on fenders that attach to the fork and seat stays that keep most of the water off you, like SKS Raceblades:


    http://www.coloradocyclist.com/product/item/SKSVGZ8R

    They do have some drawbacks, like your feet (and probably the drivetrain) still get crud on them, and they tend to collect (smash) a lot of rocks against your rear brake right after where the fender doesn't cover.

    But they keep away the "skunk strip" or your front wheel throwing water up into your face if you're turning.

  10. #10
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    Or, why not get the road bike and simply get fenders that will work with it. http://www.crudusa.com/company

    Do a search on Bike Forums. There is a lot of positive reviews about them.
    Demented internet tail wagging imbicile.

  11. #11
    z90
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    I see no downside to a bike with clearance for fenders for general cycling.

  12. #12
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    The difference is truly amazing - the fendered bike stays sooooooo much cleaner..............

    "Retirement is the best job I ever had!" Me, 2009


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    Quote Originally Posted by z90 View Post
    I see no downside to a bike with clearance for fenders for general cycling.
    The downside is that they're hard to find (a road bike with clearance for fenders). If you want something "racy" or want the comfort of full carbon fiber, it's nearly impossible (sadly, because there's really no other reason than a few grams).

  14. #14
    z90
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    Quote Originally Posted by redsparrow View Post
    I'm trying to make a decision between a frame with fender clearance and one without. I love riding in the rain and I love getting wet. If I got fenders they wouldn't be for me.

    How much do fenders actually benefit the bike itself? How effective are they at keeping road grit off the drive-train?

    Thanks.
    It would help to know more. Are you building up a bike, or buying a complete bike? What kind of riding do think you want to do with it (commuting, group rides, tooling around town, etc)? Do have another bike, and if so, what is it? Also, what's your budget?

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by z90 View Post
    It would help to know more. Are you building up a bike, or buying a complete bike? What kind of riding do think you want to do with it (commuting, group rides, tooling around town, etc)? Do have another bike, and if so, what is it? Also, what's your budget?
    Well I'm looking for a replacement for my full-on road bike (Lemond Maillot Jaune). The Lemond is too big for me and I figure I'll get something a touch more practical at the same time. I'll also be using it for commuting and would like to put my change of clothes on a rack rather than a backpack. (Little rack-top bag, not panniers.) I don't plan on doing any racing. I've done a century on the Lemond and in a few years might want to get back to that sort of riding with this bike. Right now I'm leaning towards a Soma Smoothie or an ES. I'd either transfer my Ultegra from the Lemond or maybe buy new Ultegra/105.

    The ES has (real) fender clearance, and the Smoothie doesn't. Without being able to go out and ride one of each, I'm not sure how much of a difference the geometry would make in the feel of the bike. I've been thinking of trying to find complete bikes with similar geometry to do some comparisons, but haven't gotten around to it. (Also I think that I'd be wasting someone else's time trying bikes that I don't plan to buy.) The differences between the Smoothie and ES aren't huge, but big enough that they go to the trouble of manufacturing both...

    And now, the confession, the big advantage that the Smoothie has over the ES is that the Smoothie comes in white (nice!) and the ES is deep red (blech.) If I can convince myself that the fender clearance is worth it, it could tip me towards the ES.

    I have a winter bike for in the snow (and salt,) but this bike would be for all other weather. I have plenty of experience riding in the rain, and it's not like my drive-train has been disintegrating, but that grit must be wearing it down faster than if I were a Fair Weather. Enough to make it worth buying a deep red bike? Hmmmm.... Not sure yet.

    Thanks everyone for your comments.

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    See, this is why you need a rain bike!
    Demented internet tail wagging imbicile.

  17. #17
    Immoderator KrisPistofferson's Avatar
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    Part of the reason I have fenders is because my derailleurs are freakin' expensive and I really don't like the idea of all the sand and other road grime ending up in them. In Tennessee if it looks like it's icy, they spread sand on the roads, it disappears but then comes out to play again when it rains no matter what time of year it is. Just looking at the inside of my fenders after a good rain I know this for a fact. Better stuck to my fenders than to my chain and derailleurs.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by redsparrow View Post
    ...I'd either transfer my Ultegra from the Lemond or maybe buy new Ultegra/105...
    fyi, the latest Ultegra and Dura-Ace (and I think the recently announced 105) have that cool under-the-handlebar-tape cable routing, and reputedly have noticeably better front shifting (though little different in rear shifting).

    'course if you're changing component groups, I ended up riding SRAM Red and was a little shocked to find that I really liked it better than my previous-gen Dura-Ace. Ah, well now I'm just changing subjects aren't I? Sorry. LOL

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by knobster View Post
    See, this is why you need a rain bike!
    Ahhh, both the Smoothie and the ES! Brilliant! Oh wait... money. Oh well.

    (Thanks for pointing out the Crud fenders, I hadn't seen those before.)

  20. #20
    z90
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    Quote Originally Posted by redsparrow View Post
    Well I'm looking for a replacement for my full-on road bike (Lemond Maillot Jaune). The Lemond is too big for me and I figure I'll get something a touch more practical at the same time. I'll also be using it for commuting and would like to put my change of clothes on a rack rather than a backpack. (Little rack-top bag, not panniers.) I don't plan on doing any racing. I've done a century on the Lemond and in a few years might want to get back to that sort of riding with this bike.
    For this, especially the commuting part, especially considering you live in Ottawa, I'd get something that can take fenders and fatter tires. Who knows, you may decide you want to run studded tires on it, and it would be nice to have the option. What about Soma's cross frame? Have you looked at Surly's frames? I bought a complete Long Haul Trucker and for commuting it is great. Also, a quick search for "SOMA ES frame" turns up some places that appear to be selling silver and blue frames (maybe last year's model?)

  21. #21
    z90
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    By the way, I kind of like the red. And red bikes go faster, according to BF wisdom.

  22. #22
    Cycle Dallas MMACH 5's Avatar
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    A fenders PSA from BSNYC:
    fender psa1..JPG
    That's gonna leave a mark.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Yellowbeard's Avatar
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    They can block:

    -spray into the headset
    -spray into the bottom bracket (if long enough)
    -spray onto the chainset (if long enough, we're talking mudflap long)
    -spray onto the brakes
    -spray onto the seatpost clamp area

    etc.

    They're worth it.
    I'll eat it first.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by z90 View Post
    By the way, I kind of like the red. And red bikes go faster, according to BF wisdom.
    I'm sure lots of people like the red...

    You're right that I might be able to get my hands on a blue ES from last year. For winter riding I have a fixie with some Hutchinson cyclo-cross tires, although sometimes I leave a slick on the rear wheel for a little extra fun. This new bike is just for pavement in above-freezing conditions.

    The only touring bike I've ridden was a test-ride of Jamis Aurora, which seems to fair well in reviews, but it was very far from what I'm looking for. I'm sure it's better fully loaded, but that's not what I need.

    The Surly Pacer falls somewhere between the Smoothie and the ES, geometry-wise, but doesn't have rack mounts. I also like the Tange Prestige and carbon forks of the Somas.

  25. #25
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by redsparrow View Post
    I'm sure lots of people like the red...

    You're right that I might be able to get my hands on a blue ES from last year. For winter riding I have a fixie with some Hutchinson cyclo-cross tires, although sometimes I leave a slick on the rear wheel for a little extra fun. This new bike is just for pavement in above-freezing conditions.

    The only touring bike I've ridden was a test-ride of Jamis Aurora, which seems to fair well in reviews, but it was very far from what I'm looking for. I'm sure it's better fully loaded, but that's not what I need.

    The Surly Pacer falls somewhere between the Smoothie and the ES, geometry-wise, but doesn't have rack mounts. I also like the Tange Prestige and carbon forks of the Somas.
    What about the Surly Cross Check?

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

    "Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
    RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
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