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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 01-13-06, 09:49 AM   #1
chicagoamdream
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The Bad:

Continental Ultra Sport 1000s.
These tires ****ing suck; they're flat magnets, and the real reason that I wanted to write this post. NEVER BUY THESE TIRES! (Or, if you insist, I've got a set I'll sell you, cheap). As of yesterday, I had them on both of my bikes, and I was flatting every time I went out . So, in yesterday's gorgeous weather, I got a flat within the first ten minutes, and as I was fixing it, I resolved to screw around no longer, and get to Performance for some decent tires. I went with a set of the Michelin Eriliums. The price was right ($25/each), and I recalled one that came on my first fixed wheel, and didn't recall any problems with flats. Half an hour later, the front Conti flats AGAIN, so I pulled off the Lakeshore path and mounted the Michelin. And I made it home! I know people like the Gatorskins (and my father swears by the Armadillos), but I didn't feel like giving Continental any more money. (700c x 23 Gatorskins are $25/each at Performance right now, if anyone's interested.)

Park HCW-5 Lockring Tool.
Yeah, I knew it was crap when I bought it, but this was the only three-pronged tool that the LBS I was at had. It sucks. It's way too easy to get jammed between a Phil lockring (with the lip) and the cog. Too painful to tighten without wrapping it in something. Don't buy it, pistaboy/irokid.

The Good:

Giro Pneumo helmet.
I finally decided to stop cheating death and get a helmet that I wouldn't mind wearing. I went with this because it seemed like it fit a bit lower on my head; the goofiness of vertical height was what killed the last one for me. Plus: grr, so AERO!

I've only worn it for about an hour, but it feels very comfortable, and the ventilation is a massive improvement over anything I've worn before. Not cheap, but I can't feel very guilty about buying a helmet.

Crank Bros. Power Pump.
I had a lot of fun with this yesterday, thanks to the two flats. I'm sure the larger Crank Bros. pumps are even better, but this thing is really great. It's tiny, and although it takes a while, I able to get some pretty decent pressure out of it after a few minutes. I'm not sure I felt much difference between the "High Volume/High Pressure" settings, but whatever, it worked.

So, if it's not obvious, the moral of yesterday is that I wish I hadn't tried to save a few bucks buying cheap stuff. I've now got three pumps (four with the floor pump), two of which aren't worth anything, which together would have easily covered even the most expensive Crank Bros. I've got a bunch of Continental Ultra Sports that are garbage. So, if anyone's debating between a cheaper version of something and the luxe one and feel like they need a little encouragement, you are hereby encouraged to scrape together whatever more it takes to skip over mediocrity.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:06 AM   #2
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For what it's worth... the only way that Conti 1000's work is on the front wheel with an extra-thick tube. I picked one up a long time ago in New Mexico (ever heard of 'goatheads'?), and it kept me inflated when I ran a Conti 1000 for a few weeks.

Otherwise they're complete and total crap.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:06 AM   #3
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I emailed Brent from PW to ask which lockring tool they advised for the Phil lockring because I had some trouble with the ones at my community shop...
he advised the park HCW-5

I'm not sure I understand what problem it is that you were having...wrap it in something????

also...thumbs up on MIchelins over here too
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Old 01-13-06, 10:10 AM   #4
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my turn!

Reviews of the products I used yesterday afternoon:

15mil cheapie hardware store wrench - it does the job.
Pedro's "Leche" Tire Levers - dood. they do the job.
Specialized Pre-talc'd Pro Tube - pretalc baby. so you get yer hands all white.
Cute Boy's Pump - thank you Cute Boy. i needed that.
Anderson Valley Winter Solstice Ale - i might have the name wrong because it was so good i couldn't stop myself. This is a quality product. It's a strong ale that's delicious. It avoids that evil temptation to add spices or some other unnecessary flavor **** to a beer just because it's a 'holiday' beer. A fitting thank-you for a Cute Boy.
Sam Adam's Boston Lager - some say it tastes the most like a british ale of any beer in the US. I say it's just schmancy pants beer. But it does an ok job of rounding out a night.

what i learned:
mmm. beer.

Last edited by chimblysweep; 01-13-06 at 10:31 AM.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:16 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teiaperigosa
I emailed Brent from PW to ask which lockring tool they advised for the Phil lockring because I had some trouble with the ones at my community shop...
he advised the park HCW-5

I'm not sure I understand what problem it is that you were having...wrap it in something????

also...thumbs up on MIchelins over here too
The HCW-5 has three prongs that line up nicely with the Phil lockring.



Other than that, I can't see anything to recommend about it. It's just a flat piece of metal (laser-etched, supposedly, not stamped, but), with no guides or anything to keep it in the lockring notches (like some BB spanners do, so you can kind of rest against the cog to keep the tool on straight). So, you're simultaneously trying to exert massive torque and balance 10mm or so of metal within another 10 mm of metal. Super easy to slip out.

The "wrap it in something" refers to how bad a piece of metal digging into the ball of your hand feels. This isn't a huge deal...just use a rag or something...but it's another infamous feature of this tool.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:19 AM   #6
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i think most of us swear by the Hozan lockring wrench. It's just two pronged, but I use it on the phil lockrings too. But it's still flat metal and not at all ergonomic.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:22 AM   #7
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I used my bike yesterday. It was good.

Lockring tool. If you want something really worthy and in keeping up with the "quality" aspect, go for the Keirin professional tool (Marcus even has one for sale):



The Pneumo is nice. I had mine for a week before it cracked and split in a little motorist running stop sign endo accident (thereby causing my mis-aligned collarbone separation). It was a nice helmet for the week that I had it. I like the Monza a lot though because it's a little beefier in that regard. The Pneumo I felt, was set up to be easily cracked -- the skeleton is pretty damn thin in areas. I prefer a more robust helmet for everyday use (i.e. dropping on the floor, bashing against doors when it's atached to my bag, etc). This is separate from an actual crash situation.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:22 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chimblysweep
what i learned:
mmm. beer.
Well, yeah. To expand into yesterday evening:

Allagash White Ale.
Mmm. And on tap at the Map Room.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:27 AM   #9
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Also: Hitachino Nest White Ale and others have been very tasty. they also feature my favourite ever ale labels.

http://kodawari.cc/engpage/kodawari/html/hitachino.htm

and

http://kodawari.cc/engpage/kodawari/.../white_ale.htm

Available at Smallbar.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:28 AM   #10
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Let us not overlook the $85 Paul Lockring Wrench:



So many options!

For the record, I'll probably be using that Park until it breaks, I lose it, or I die. Flats daily are one thing...some hand discomfort once a month is tolerable for me. I just felt like reviewing it.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:31 AM   #11
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Swobo wool longsleeve jersey.

Worked good yester day on a long ride, 3 large rear pockets are nice, long front zipper works well for excellent ventilation. Works great for the $8 I paid for it. Only complaint is my 15 mili wrench slipped slideways in one of the pockets and the pointy ends poked a hole in my jersey. :/
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Old 01-13-06, 10:34 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keevohn
I picked one up a long time ago in New Mexico (ever heard of 'goatheads'?), and it kept me inflated when I ran a Conti 1000 for a few weeks.
The only thing I've found that stands up to goatheads are Specialized Armadillos and Mr Tuffy tire liners. Maybe some of that Slime goop in your tube, but that will only get you back to your start point before the tire is flat. Truely an evil thorn.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:34 AM   #13
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8 bucks?!
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Old 01-13-06, 10:42 AM   #14
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8 bucks?!
old swobo. Thrift store. pwn.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:46 AM   #15
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Oh i have the ultra sport 1000's. They suck. New tires is on my list of things to buy when I have a little more money.
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Old 01-13-06, 10:52 AM   #16
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What tires are you guys talking about?

No tires exist by the name of ultra sport 1000. Conti makes an ultra sport tire, and a sport 1000 tire, both vastly different.

ultra sport:


sport 1000:



So which was it?
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Old 01-13-06, 10:59 AM   #17
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I'm talking about the Ultra Sport; I've seen it as the "Ultra 1000" as well.

I think it replaced the Sport 1000 in Conti's line, if I'm not mistaken.
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Old 01-13-06, 11:05 AM   #18
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Im talking about the one on top.
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Old 01-13-06, 11:21 AM   #19
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the only conti worth buying is the gatorskins. I love those things and I think they actually ride better than my rubinos. The conti 23 are definately skinnier than the rubino 23s.

Here's my product review... Performance tights are super awsome. I have the unpadded ones that are waterproof in the front. they keep me warm and dry so now I wear those and shorts to work. not bad for 50 clams.
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Old 01-13-06, 11:27 AM   #20
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As noted, the Ultra Sport was formerly the 1000's. Basically the bottom of the line Conti.
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Old 01-13-06, 11:44 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by absntr
Also: Hitachino Nest White Ale and others have been very tasty. they also feature my favourite ever ale labels.

http://kodawari.cc/engpage/kodawari/html/hitachino.htm

and

http://kodawari.cc/engpage/kodawari/.../white_ale.htm

Available at Smallbar.

Hitachino is one of my favorite lines... I can, oddly enough, only find it at home in LOuisville. One place has it at IU, but it is $4.99 for a 12oz bottle. Down south its $2.99 for a 24oz for any of the brews. My vote is for the red rice ale.


I have the hozan locring thing and it does the job, but slips once in awhile to the demise of your knuckles. That kerin pro tool would be a sweet purchase, but since i don't run 13/14t cogs, it doesn't really make it worth it.
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Old 01-13-06, 12:01 PM   #22
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I use the Conti Ultrasports and they work fine for me. My only complaint is that they are probably the hardest tire on the planet to mount/unmount. A serious PITA. Holy moley. I was getting flats fairly regularly when I first put them on, but I doubled up my rim tape and it's been smooth sailing for the past few months of brakeless (ie, skipping, skidding, etc) city riding (ie, glass, crunk, crap, etc). I honestly can't remember the last time I had a flat. They're $13 at MEC. I think everyone I know rides them.

m.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:04 PM   #23
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I HAVE THE CONTI 3000'S cant say how good,bad they are since i only road twice on them
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Old 01-13-06, 01:26 PM   #24
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you had way more ****ing fun than me
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Old 01-13-06, 01:39 PM   #25
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1999 Lemond Chambery, full Ultegra, Time carbon fork, Rolf Vector Comp wheels, Selle Italia Flite Titanium saddle:

Yesterday was my first time out on a long ride with this bike. 50 miles. I am loving it. It's very stiff and responsive. I nice change from my 01 Pista, which I find to feel kinda mushy on climbs and over bumpy roads. The fork dampens road vibrations brilliantly. Aside from being dangerous in strong crosswinds (deep rims) the wheels feel very smooth and zippy once you get moving. Accelerating feels a little slow if you start out in a beefy gear, but only for the first few rotations of the cranks. The saddle is a dream.
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