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  1. #351
    Senior Member sherbornpeddler's Avatar
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    Classic Cruising

    I paste a link to a google map of my 37 mile looping ride from Sherborn to Claybrook, Strawberry Hill to Pine Street and back. The roads are classic cruising roads of smooth pavement, low traffic and swooping turns. Moderate hills, lots of shade and did I mention smooth pavement?

    The Prouty is the PMC of NH benefiting Norris Cotton Cancer treatment, a great cause. There are various distances of walks and rides. The figure 8 course loops back and forth across the Conneticut River into Vermont and back to the NH side there are flats and significant hills.

    Generally low car traffic, well marked and very friendly. About 5000 riders but no crowds because Prouty uses a "riders choice" start rather than the enmass crowd. We've camped the night before and this time, got up at 4:30AM and drove up in the morning.

    We finished the 50 just after noon. We opted out of the 100 mile ride in concern for getting caught in thunderstorms and big hills on what would have been daughter's first century. Daughter and weather were fine, Father too cautious. We'll do the TriStates Century in September.
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    Life is like riding a bicycle. In order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein

  2. #352
    Senior Member sherbornpeddler's Avatar
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    Meeting in Waltham and riding to Boston for breakfast. White trail in; Memorial side out.
    Life is like riding a bicycle. In order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein

  3. #353
    Life Is Good ZIPP2001's Avatar
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    What a Great day for a ride, I rolled out of work early (noon) and headed to Worcester to do the Airport then George Street. Then headed to Clinton, Lancaster , and Sterling before heading back to work to pick up my car. It was a nice 72 mile ride, I really enjoy the Hot weather keep it coming.

  4. #354
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Took the GS out for 22.1 miles this afternoon. Wanted to get out early but a late return last night from a show in Maine made that impossible. So in the heat of the afternoon sun I rode the round trip from Waltham to the Esplanade. Not a bad ride though despite the 94degF heat. The Esplanade does have its charms on a warm sunny day.

    The watermelon tastes great right now.

    For tomorrow I hope to go much longer and much earlier. Want to repeat the run out to Carlisle but with bikinggrrrl's additions, maybe throw in a gratuitous around-the-block or two if the mileage wants it. My new wheel isn't ready yet though.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
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  5. #355
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sherbornpeddler View Post
    White trail in; Memorial side out.
    I usually cross over to the right bank at Rt 20/N Beacon St. Haven't ridden the Mem Drive side for many a year. But the Boston (bump!) side (bump!) is really (bump!) annoying because (BUMP!!) except for (bump!) one stretch where the river takes a loop northward at the Elliot Bridge the (bump!) surface is broken (BUMP!!!) by a depression every (bump!) 10 yards or (bump!) so until you (bump!) get to the (bump!) BU Bridge. Most of the rest of the way in is nice enough though.

    The guys on the urban/commuter/mtb bikes don't seem to mind. I usually pass them on the smooth parts but let them blow by me on the bumpy parts. (BUMP!!! Ouch! My poor wheels.)
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
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  6. #356
    Senior Member mastershake16's Avatar
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    Welcome to Boston Massachusetts

  7. #357
    Senior Member sherbornpeddler's Avatar
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    Welcome indeed! I didn't feel any bumps but I was satiated with good food and a city pace on my Oneway singlespeed with 35cm tires.

    Eggs over easy at Wilson's in Waltham then 1st stop with Saltonstall statue in Watertown then the "Biscuit for Bass" memorial along the Charles. We saw the Bobby Orr statue, rode passed where we'd hoped to see a giant plywood, golden NBA trophy (auugh) and found the very small Great Molasses Flood plaque by Copp's Hill.

    I am glad I don't have to do the brightwork on the boats at Rowes Wharf, Harbor walk trail past the Court House, passed Harpoon Brewery and had a donut at Doughboy on Dorchester Ave.

    On to Commonwealth's Hamilton, Morison, ladies Adams, Stone and Wheatley then left Leif by turning right on Mass Ave. We visited the site of Alvan Clark and Sons telescope company on Sydney St. (made the largest refractory lens in 1897). We then rode Mt. Auburn St. to Sevan Bakery in Watertown for a fatayer meat pie and back to Wilson's.
    Life is like riding a bicycle. In order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein

  8. #358
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    No bumps today! The intrepid GS and less-intrepid rider went northwest instead of east. Only 53.0 miles but after yesterday's ride in the heat, Friday's late night, and today's heat I'm glad it wasn't any longer. Still, though it ain't my age it is a personal longest distance. Bikinggrrrl, your directions were great. I think going north on West St is the wrong direction, which it to say it is all uphill! On the other hand, it also means going north on South St. And North Rd. goes east-west. Go figure...

    Going past the cranberry bog I got behind a farm truck pulling a trailer full of, um, organic, beast-derived fertilizer. He was dropping little bits all over the road. It made for an interesting olfactory experience. Those roads are nice to bike. A bit hilly too, which is what I expected.

    There must have been an antique car show on somewhere too. About a dozen brass-era Fords went by heading north out of Concord on Monument Rd. Also saw a Saab Sonnett, a chrome-bumpered Midget, some mid-50's Chevy. Also saw a lot of bikes.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
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  9. #359
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sherbornpeddler View Post
    Welcome indeed! I didn't feel any bumps but I was satiated with good food and a city pace on my Oneway singlespeed with 35cm tires.
    Ooh, that sounds so civilized. A C&V or "tweedy" thing, no doubt. Yes, definitely civilized.
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  10. #360
    Senior Member mastershake16's Avatar
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    We saw the Bobby Orr statue, rode passed where we'd hoped to see a giant plywood, golden NBA trophy (auugh) and found the very small Great Molasses Flood plaque by Copp's Hill.
    Bobby Orr is the man! I play pond hockey all the time, but we definitely should have won the NBA championship..stupid Lakers.

    How is riding in Boston? Seems hectic and dangerous! Come up north so you won't get drilled by a car haha

  11. #361
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mastershake16 View Post
    How is riding in Boston? Seems hectic and dangerous! Come up north so you won't get drilled by a car haha
    New Hampshire? Where the state flower is the small-displacement gasoline engine?

    Actually, Boston is fairly bike-friendly. It's easy to get out for rural road-riding, and biking in the city is pretty good. It depends on where you want to go, of course.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
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  12. #362
    Senior Member mastershake16's Avatar
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    Hey don't be hatin' on the purple lilac!
    Next time you come up here I'll roll my John Deere out, and ill be lookin' to hit you!
    (Just try to stay under 5 mph for me)



    We do actually have nice trails, but the roads are usually cracked on the sides and have dirt edges...but there are tons of bike trails so its all good.

    Now I just need a bike... which I still haven't decided on. Have you ever heard of Butchikas in salem (NH)?

  13. #363
    Senior Member sherbornpeddler's Avatar
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    I "city ride" Boston faster than pedestrians and slower, very much give way to motorized vehicles. Occassionaly I ride up on sidewalks to avoid traffic and creep at intersections. City drivers seem bicycle friendly; used to stop and go, proximity of pedestrians and even bikes. The spandex messenger-type flying through traffic I imagine drives drivers nuts. I imagine my near pedestrian pedal speed is nothing.

    Out in the Metro-burbs, spandexed at 17 mph, I inspire honks, sudden accelerations and (texting) near misses; even when solo, tucked to the side of the road. I am pretty good staying single file in group rides, mortified when comrades don't promptly give way and find motor drivers relations more strained than Boston proper.

    Still, today was another great Metro ride, sailing 45 miles through Norfolk, Wrentham, Blackstone, Mendon, Hopedale and Bellingham.

    Anyone biked under an official "Public Shade Tree?" There is a beauty on 114 Elm St in Balckstone, just east of the stone E. Blackstone Grange Building.
    Life is like riding a bicycle. In order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein

  14. #364
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mastershake16 View Post
    Now I just need a bike... which I still haven't decided on. Have you ever heard of Butchikas in salem (NH)?
    Hmm, without a bike it's hard to ride very far! Never heard of Butchikas but I did catch their website. Seems like a decent place. Don't know much more though.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
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  15. #365
    Senior Member mastershake16's Avatar
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    Alright. I called them and the guy said they had a CAAD9 6, and a Specialized Allez Sport Compact.... He said Tiagra is fine, and 105 isn't much better.

    What should I go for?

  16. #366
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mastershake16 View Post
    Alright. I called them and the guy said they had a CAAD9 6, and a Specialized Allez Sport Compact.... He said Tiagra is fine, and 105 isn't much better. What should I go for?
    You're asking the wrong person. I ride a bike that was new in 1973. I wouldn't know the difference and never understood what Shimano was thinkin' when they named their stuff. But from what I can tell, by yesterday's standards most bikes today work very well.

    First, the bike must fit. There are a lot of "rules" about fit but they're all just guidelines and every body is different. You have to be comfortable.

    After that, it's all a matter of perspective. If you're not racing the differences don't matter much.

    Consider gearing, for example. Bikes today come with 8 or 9 or 10 cogs or for all I know even a dozen. In the old days they came with 5. What does that gain you? It means that the gears are closer together. If you want a certain ratio X but that isn't exactly one of your gears, your choices are X plus a little or X minus a little. How important is that small error? So small you can live with it, trust me!

    Consider the range. People stress over whether the high should be 120 gear inches or 132 or whatever. Those gears are high enough for you to pedal at 40+mph. Most people can't maintain much over 20mph. On a good day I can maintain 18 to 19, on a bad day (like yesterday) with a headwind I may not manage a steady 15. And we live in New England where they grow short steep hills. (You should know!) The only time I ever hit 30 is going downhill, but I don't need to pedal downhill. I can if I want to but I'm not racing anyone. So my high gear is about 92.5 and I almost never use it. Of all the differences between those bikes, one of the least important is the high gear.

    Now, there are differences between bikes. Everything about the bike is a trade-off of practicality issues. Some bikes are optimized one way, some another. One of those issues is cost. Another is weight. Some components work ever so slightly better than others. But compared to the wind and your own stamina those factors are all peanuts on the road. Far more important is whether the bike fits. Secondly, it should match the kind of riding you want to do - a trail bike will do okay but be less than ideal for speed riding on roads, but a road bike will be inappropriate for trails. After that, just have fun.

    Comparisons between bikes like those come up almost every day in the Road Cycling forum. You might want to ask there, or go through the threads which have titles like "Which bike should I buy?"

    Good luck! Maybe we'll see you on the road.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
    jimmuller

  17. #367
    Senior Member mastershake16's Avatar
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    Thanks!

    I want to race, but I guess if it really ever does make a difference, I can upgrade later.

    Oh, and short steep hills....haha gotta love them.

    I look forward to riding!

  18. #368
    Senior Member sherbornpeddler's Avatar
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    I agree with Jim; fit is most important.
    I bought a really great Caad8 on sale and found the frame couldn't be made to fit. I went to a different bike shop, was expertly fitted 9to a steel with carbon forks frame) and swapped the fancy gear over and sold the Caad8 frame to support the Jimmy Fund. 20,000 miles alter I still love the ride.
    I have bikes with Tiagra, 105, Duraace and Campy. Wheels are more important.

    Unless you are poor Andy Schleck today, weight and function differences in shifting gear aren't all that important and they all work. The higher the price, the nicer it is but a good fit, nice wheels and a nice frame are more important than the shifting gear. If the ride is the same and one frame weighs a pound more go for the cheap frame and get clip on peddles and shoes.
    Life is like riding a bicycle. In order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein

  19. #369
    Senior Member Jim from Boston's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sherbornpeddler View Post
    I "city ride" Boston faster than pedestrians and slower, very much give way to motorized vehicles. Occassionaly I ride up on sidewalks to avoid traffic and creep at intersections. City drivers seem bicycle friendly; used to stop and go, proximity of pedestrians and even bikes. The spandex messenger-type flying through traffic I imagine drives drivers nuts. I imagine my near pedestrian pedal speed is nothing.

    Out in the Metro-burbs, spandexed at 17 mph, I inspire honks, sudden accelerations and (texting) near misses; even when solo, tucked to the side of the road. I am pretty good staying single file in group rides, mortified when comrades don't promptly give way and find motor drivers relations more strained than Boston proper...
    I live in Kenmore Square and commute to, as well as do training loops to suburbs in all the sectors radiating out from Boston. I totally agree with your well-witten description of the cycling in scene in Metro Boston, with an attitude similar to mine, especially about giving drivers room.

    In a recent preceding post you wrote:

    Quote Originally Posted by sherbornpeddler View Post
    ...Eggs over easy at Wilson's in Waltham...

    On to Commonwealth's Hamilton, Morison, ladies Adams, Stone and Wheatley then left Leif by turning right on Mass Ave...
    Our last bike excursion together as a family was about 20 years ago to Walden Pond with a stop for breakfast as Wilson's Diner where we snapped a favorite family photo of my son and wife. Mike soon outgrew the trailer that I pulled, Sharon got busy with childcare, etc and we never got back into synch to ride together. (Before children we were avid tourists including a cross country ride.)

    Also our condo overlooks that Lief (Erickson) statue on the Comm Ave Mall, the only one that faces West instead of East.

  20. #370
    on a road near you... cmolway's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mastershake16 View Post
    Alright. I called them and the guy said they had a CAAD9 6, and a Specialized Allez Sport Compact.... He said Tiagra is fine, and 105 isn't much better.

    What should I go for?
    If you think you will want to upgrade, get the 105. It is entry-level top-tier components. Shifts as well as its more expensive ultegra and dura ace brethren while sacrificing a little weight-wise. With 105, you probably won't be tempted to upgrade (and spend extra $ in the process).

    Both bikes are good entry level bikes. Make sure you take them both out for a ride (read: more than a simple spin in the parking lot) and decide which is the best for you. I have owned a few C'dales and have been very happy with them. C'dale is coming out with the CAAD10 soon which will make the CAAD9's drop in price. That being said, there are always some upgrade-fever guy with disposable income getting rid of his near-new road bike for a song to be had on craigslist if you take the time to look.

  21. #371
    Senior Member mastershake16's Avatar
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    So your saying it is worth waiting for 105's than just going for the Tiagras?

    Also the LBS is on a main road so I don't know how I'm going to be able to take it for a test ride, at-least outside of the parking lot.

  22. #372
    Lug Princess Veloria's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimmuller View Post
    New Hampshire? Where the state flower is the small-displacement gasoline engine?

    Actually, Boston is fairly bike-friendly. It's easy to get out for rural road-riding, and biking in the city is pretty good. It depends on where you want to go, of course.
    I thought the countryside around Boston was nice, until I rode through Southern Maine and realised how much nicer it is - traffic wise, I mean.

  23. #373
    on a road near you... cmolway's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mastershake16 View Post
    So your saying it is worth waiting for 105's than just going for the Tiagras?

    Also the LBS is on a main road so I don't know how I'm going to be able to take it for a test ride, at-least outside of the parking lot.
    Don't waste your $ on a gruppo that you'll want to upgrade from--it's cheaper to get the grouppo you want on the bike. Don't forget, 105 is 10-speed and Tiagra is only 9.

    Why can't you ride on a "main road"? Road cycling is about riding on the road, not cycling paths. If you are talking about Cycels Etcetera, you can ride down Old Rockinham Rd which is right off Range Rd. I'm sure if you ask, the LBS will show you where you can take it out for a spin. I am sure you will not be the first (or last) customer to do so.

  24. #374
    Senior Member mastershake16's Avatar
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    I didn't mean to say that I can't ride roads at all. I certainly can! I just want to try riding the trails for a while because they take you all around, and the pavement is perfect.

    I was talking about a different cycling shop, but it's funny you bring Cycle ETC up because I had totally forgotten about them and on my way home from work I saw the shop. I thought they had closed, but apparently they now have a new owner! I read this on a mountain biking forum, but hopefully the new owner still has a good amount of road bikes.

    Ill probably stop in tomorrow or something but since you know where it is, where do you think they'd let me test it out? Not on 28 hahaha

  25. #375
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmolway View Post
    Don't waste your $ on a gruppo that you'll want to upgrade from--it's cheaper to get the grouppo you want on the bike. Don't forget, 105 is 10-speed and Tiagra is only 9.
    That is good economic advice. However I question the idea that someone who didn't have a bike, who hadn't done a lot of riding but who thought he wanted to race could buy his first bike and that bike would become his entry-level race bike. I suppose entry-level racers could do that. But it strikes me that after getting some amount of experience, were he to walk into a bike shop then as opposed to now he would probably choose something totally different. Different pedals, different stem and bars, different gearing, different wheels, different saddle, etc. If he stays in it he will eventually customize much of the gear, even the frame choice.

    It appears that at the moment he isn't even sure about whether to buy a trail bike or a road bike. He's sure not going to race a trail bike successfully in road races. Yes, one should buy what one really wants the first time because it is cheaper than buying the wrong thing then "fixing" it. But with no experience one really can't know what is best.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
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