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  1. #1
    Senior Member loimpact's Avatar
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    Yet another weight discussion......Bike weight vs bodyweight.....

    Reason I ask this is because I'm trying to keep my bike as light as originally purchased as possible. I've already since added a water bottle (single cuz I can refill along most routes I ride) and getting ready to start carrying mini pump, patches, tools, etc. as I start riding solo).

    I ride with a guy who has a full-on Specialized S-works roadie that weighs a feather, yet he's got seat-post bag, stem bag, 2 water bottles, pump, etc. He's probably added 25% to his overall bike weight with just the crap he carries. Why not save a few thousand bucks & just buy an alum middle-budget bike then??

    So thinking outloud, I figure I should TRY to carry as much on my person as I can vs on the bike (i.e. don't mount the pump or tools in a stem bag, etc.) since I can probably fluctuate a few pounds in water weight on a long ride, right??

    2lbs off the bike is like 10%.

    2lbs off my body is like 1%

    ???

  2. #2
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    1. I prefer to carry my "stuff" on the bike rather than on my body.
    2. I try not to carry too much - just what i need to fix a flat tire and a water bottle or two, also my wallet, cell phone and car keys.
    My greatest fear is all of my kids standing around my coffin and talking about "how sensible" dad was.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by loimpact View Post
    I ride with a guy who has a full-on Specialized S-works roadie that weighs a feather, yet he's got seat-post bag, stem bag, 2 water bottles, pump, etc. He's probably added 25% to his overall bike weight with just the crap he carries. Why not save a few thousand bucks & just buy an alum middle-budget bike then??
    If we made bike purchase decisions purely based on weight, then the answer is: because his bike will weigh that much more. It stands to reason he would add all the same items to his hypothetical aluminum bike.

    Quote Originally Posted by loimpact View Post
    So thinking outloud, I figure I should TRY to carry as much on my person as I can vs on the bike (i.e. don't mount the pump or tools in a stem bag, etc.) since I can probably fluctuate a few pounds in water weight on a long ride, right??

    2lbs off the bike is like 10%. 2lbs off my body is like 1%
    I think you have to consider yourself and the bike together. I have nothing to base this conclusion on but grade 12 physics, but it seems as though unless you're worried about your centre of gravity being too low, whether mounted to your bike or not would make no difference.

    If you figure you'll sometimes take the pump and tools, and sometimes not, then carrying them makes sense. I don't think having them in your jersey pocket versus on your bike will change anything for you. I suppose if you're hyper-aware of weight, the holder for the pump and the bag for your tools that is required to frame mount would add a few ounces.

    Anytime I find myself considering my bike weight and upgrading a component to reduce it, I look at my stomach and conclude thats where I should be looking to shave pounds

  4. #4
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    It's total weight (you + bike + crap) that matters. Carrying it on you compared to the bike doesn't matter. Yes, there's no reason to spend thousands to save a few pounds when you can do the same by losing it off of your belly.

    Weight weenies are called weenies for a reason...
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  5. #5
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    It's always easier to pull it on wheels, than it is to carry it...

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


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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by loimpact View Post
    I ride with a guy who has a full-on Specialized S-works roadie that weighs a feather, yet he's got seat-post bag, stem bag, 2 water bottles, pump, etc. He's probably added 25% to his overall bike weight with just the crap he carries. Why not save a few thousand bucks & just buy an alum middle-budget bike then??
    Because when you're racing you can easily shed unnecessary items like bike pumps, extra water etc so your bike will be light when it counts. If you're just training and not racing then the weight doesn't matter. As others have said, it doesn't matter where you carry the extra weight, the effect will be the same.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregf83 View Post
    Because when you're racing you can easily shed unnecessary items like bike pumps, extra water etc so your bike will be light when it counts. If you're just training and not racing then the weight doesn't matter. As others have said, it doesn't matter where you carry the extra weight, the effect will be the same.
    I am 63 years old so my weight and bike's weight matters when riding with younguns.

  8. #8
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    I'm 67 and it doesn't matter because the Young Guns are not riding where I go Anyhow.

    theyre off in their own world .

    hope they are better at cleaning it up, Money was Made messing it Up

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    I'm 67 and it doesn't matter because the Young Guns are not riding where I go Anyhow.

    theyre off in their own world .

    hope they are better at cleaning it up, Money was Made messing it Up
    That's my problem, I'm riding in their world and trying not to get spit out.

  10. #10
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    I loved the club ride when I visited Northumbria , whole different culture..

    I was Mid tour , would take a ferry to Norway next.. So on my touring rig
    someone dropped back occasionally to chat,

    the trip was not like a Cafe Race, more a ride in the country side, with lunch in the middle.



    Cant stay on their wheel even if they do all the pulls at the front?

  11. #11
    Ding! Bandera's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by loimpact View Post
    I'm trying to keep my bike as light as originally purchased as possible. I've already since added a water bottle (single cuz I can refill along most routes I ride) and getting ready to start carrying mini pump, patches, tools, etc. as I start riding solo).
    Carrying what one needs for the distance of a ride and nothing else makes sense to me.
    Having sufficient H2O, a reliable pump, flats kit, 'phone, food as distance calls for it, wallet & keys gets it for me.
    Less is more, not enough & you walk. That stuff is carried on the bike.

    That said here's a pic of what I'm riding tomorrow w/ wet weather & variable temps predicted, rain gear stashed & mudguards fitted. If it turns out to be Bluebird weather I can haul a set of plastic fenders & a Carradice bag more comfortably than if it's a North wind & rain w/o my nasty-stuff-kit.

    PS: Body weight, less is great. Go for it.


    -Bandera
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Bandera; 03-15-14 at 05:25 PM. Reason: Bluebird
    '74 Raleigh International - '77 Trek TX900FG - '92 Vitus 979 - '10 Merckx EMX-3- '11 Soma Stanyan

  12. #12
    Senior Member WonderMonkey's Avatar
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    No matter what bike he buys he would probably still add all that stuff on there. So why not start as light as you can to stay as light as you can?
    http://www.280dude.com/
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  13. #13
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=WonderMonkey;16581146So why not start as light as you can to stay as light as you can?[/QUOTE]

    If your rich, then this is a fine plan. For me, it's not how I'll spend my money...
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  14. #14
    Senior Member
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    as regards on-body or on-bike weight...

    think of this. you've got a pair of bike shoes that weight 1 lb more than you would like them to. you also have a pair of pedals that weight 1 lb more than you would like them to. the shoes when in use would be part of you and the pedals when in use would be part of the bike. what's the difference when riding?

    you could also think of a discrepancy between a pair of winter biking tights vs. a heavy saddle. gloves and and handlebars, etc...

  15. #15
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    I just happen to notice this thread and though I post a slightly off topic comment.
    When I lived in NYC, there was a popular ride from the city up along the Palisades in NJ.
    At a midway rest point, I overheard a cyclist with a 1st class light road bike saying that they wanted to buy a lighter bike. I observed that this person had easily about 5lbs of fat. Losing the 5lbs off your body although not easy couldn't be matched by a much lighter bike.

  16. #16
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    Maybe I am misunderstanding, but is the OP arguing against water bottles and flat repair kits?
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  17. #17
    Senior Member Dave Cutter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by caloso View Post
    Maybe I am misunderstanding, but is the OP arguing against water bottles and flat repair kits?
    I can't help but think the OP [loimpact] is just joking.

    Quote Originally Posted by loimpact View Post
    So thinking outloud, I figure I should TRY to carry as much on my person as I can vs on the bike (i.e. don't mount the pump or tools in a stem bag, etc.) since I can probably fluctuate a few pounds in water weight on a long ride, right??

    2lbs off the bike is like 10%.

    2lbs off my body is like 1%

  18. #18
    Senior Member GhostSS's Avatar
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    ??

  19. #19
    Senior Member loimpact's Avatar
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    Interesting that the video didn't REALLY answer the question they proposed at the beginning. (confuzzled) "What makes the bigger difference, lighter bike or lighter rider?"

    And, for those wondering......I'm actually quite serious! I think there is probably a variable or two involved in bike weight that we can't account for the same way in our body weight. Cranks move, wheels turn, headset rotates, etc.

    My mind goes specifically to things like climbing and acceleration. I've ridden heavy & light bikes where I don't know that me losing 10lbs of bodyweight would allow me to get a 35lb slug of an old steel behemoth accelerating faster than a 25lb version of the same bike.

    Anyway, I know in a perfect environment, using a constant wattage to move a bike+rider, they can be considered 1 unit. But I can't help wonder if there's more to it.

  20. #20
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    I did write that my comment was slightly off topic. My comment had to do with our extra body weight versus external weight.

  21. #21
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GhostSS View Post


    ??
    This is a great example of how to ask the right question and get the wrong answer.

    Video should be called: How to show the difficulties of using a power meter.
    http://Charles.Plager.net
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  22. #22
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by loimpact View Post
    Interesting that the video didn't REALLY answer the question they proposed at the beginning. (confuzzled) "What makes the bigger difference, lighter bike or lighter rider?"

    And, for those wondering......I'm actually quite serious! I think there is probably a variable or two involved in bike weight that we can't account for the same way in our body weight. Cranks move, wheels turn, headset rotates, etc.

    My mind goes specifically to things like climbing and acceleration. I've ridden heavy & light bikes where I don't know that me losing 10lbs of bodyweight would allow me to get a 35lb slug of an old steel behemoth accelerating faster than a 25lb version of the same bike.

    Anyway, I know in a perfect environment, using a constant wattage to move a bike+rider, they can be considered 1 unit. But I can't help wonder if there's more to it.

    It doesn't matter where the weight it. It's total weight that matters. Keep the pump. Don't eat the doughnut.
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by loimpact View Post
    Interesting that the video didn't REALLY answer the question they proposed at the beginning...
    For me, the video answered the question very scientifically. The conclusion presented in the video is exactly what's also been said by other posters. It's not bike weight OR rider weight. It's both. At least, that's what I took away from it.

    The video also suggested that if you must drop weight (with the aim of decreasing the amount of effort you'll expend over a given distance for a given length of time) then losing body weight is a wiser (economically-wiser) choice - in the broader scheme of things.

  24. #24
    Don from Austin Texas
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    If you have to move bike and rider from elevation "A" up to elevation "B" you are moving total of weight of bike, rider and accessories from "A"a to "B." The total is all that matters.

    If you need to accelerate from speed "A" to speed "B" you need to accelerate the sum of bike, rider and accessories from "A" to "B." But here we have an additional factor in that weight at the circumference of the wheel is moving at 2 x road speed, so rim and tire weight have a greater influence on acceleration and deceleration. This makes no difference at a steady speed fighting a head wind nor on a long steady climb, but there is a small difference in accelerating.

    Bottom line: moving weight from the bike to your person will give only a psychological benefit in that the bike will feel nice and light if you carry it somewhere. Or it will help if you are a cyclocross racer who dismounts and carries a bike through unrideable segments.

    Don in Austin

  25. #25
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    I personally ride for fitness, not speed, so I have a rack with a large trunk bag. I carry a bicycle tool kit, a patch kit, a spare tube, a screw driver, a CO2 inflator with 2 spare cartridges, a road morph pump, emergency food, 2 full water bottles, a small first aid kit, a space blanket, and an emergency rain poncho.

    I did used to carry a crescent wrench and vice grips, but I have scaled back.

    I carry more on long rides through remote areas...

    All that to say... I am not going to carry all of that stuff on my body!!!
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