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Do you ride your vintage bikes hard?

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Do you ride your vintage bikes hard?

Old 01-14-19, 11:08 PM
  #76  
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Not only do I ride 'em hard, I look at 'em hard!

Seriously, sometimes I just stare at one of them for like 20 minutes straight. It's like I'm hypnotized. They don't actually talk to me or anything. So, no worries ... yet.
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Old 01-15-19, 12:14 AM
  #77  
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Originally Posted by SurferRosa View Post
Not only do I ride 'em hard, I look at 'em hard!

Seriously, sometimes I just stare at one of them for like 20 minutes straight. It's like I'm hypnotized. They don't actually talk to me or anything. So, no worries ... yet.
Yeah, I gaze upon them as well. Sometimes I even go down to the garage to check on them. No joke.
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Old 01-15-19, 12:42 AM
  #78  
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This is a really good question.
for my Miyata 1000, I try to use it for randonneuring or sport touring. It's in great shape and everything is original.

I have an 87 Bianchi Grizzly that was abused hard by its previous owner in the 90s, but the frame is still in amazing shape. It's only the consumable parts that need replacing. i'll be converting it into a drop bar touring bike.

The one I abused to heck with my ex was our Burley tandem. I don't know how those 40 year old 36h low flange wheels could take such a beating, but they're still true.
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Old 01-15-19, 02:21 AM
  #79  
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The only thing I've managed to break on my late 50s J.C. Higgins Freightliner is the chain many times, and the back tire when I hit the pot hole at the end of my alley, five freakin spokes snapped, I only go about 10 mph on my 40+ mile rides, but I am usually doing 18mph when I take it on 20 mile rides, it has a 48-16 gear ration and weighs 110lbs with the sound system, so I have no idea how more stuff hasn't broke. Really shows how well some stuff is built.
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Old 01-15-19, 06:40 AM
  #80  
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Yes, I ride them hard, from my perspective, enough to see changes in the finish over 4-5 years and 5K miles.

None of my bikes are really wall hangers with the Patina of use they have seen. Plus, they are somewhat common bikes. Found out, over the holidays, that my youngest can ride all of them. They will likely out live me and have a home in the family.
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Old 01-15-19, 08:06 AM
  #81  
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I remember as a kid bringing one of my first bikes into a shop because I was breaking rear spokes. The owner asked "Do you torque out the rear wheel going up hills?"

"Yeah" I replied.

"Don't do that." he advised sternly.

From that day on, I decided it was my mission in life to see how long I could stay in the big ring up hills, and torque that rear wheel out like it was my worst enemy and there was no tomorrow.


I still try to do that when I can, and ride my equipment as hard as possible, torque-wise anyway, as opposed to riding over curbs and off roofs, etc. I think it's a good thing to do with a new build, and something that ought to be done for safety's sake, to make sure something is not gonna come loose or go out of adjustment a month from now in the middle of nowhere. I would much rather have something go out during intentional stress testing. So I'm pretty much always trying to coax something to break, especially when I know I'm close to home.


"It's for safety's sake" I insincerely tell myself.
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Old 01-15-19, 01:57 PM
  #82  
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I'm not heavy or strong enough to ride a bike hard.
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Old 01-23-19, 10:41 AM
  #83  
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My bikes groan when I ride them.
Does that count?
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Old 01-23-19, 05:05 PM
  #84  
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Originally Posted by RobbieTunes View Post
My bikes groan when I ride them.
Does that count?
You're sure that's your bike you're hearing, right?
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Old 01-23-19, 05:25 PM
  #85  
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I ride my "vintage" bikes as hard as I ride my modern bikes.

OK, my most modern bike is from 1990.
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Old 01-23-19, 06:45 PM
  #86  
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Originally Posted by Lemond1985 View Post
I remember as a kid bringing one of my first bikes into a shop because I was breaking rear spokes. The owner asked "Do you torque out the rear wheel going up hills?"

"Yeah" I replied.

"Don't do that." he advised sternly.

From that day on, I decided it was my mission in life to see how long I could stay in the big ring up hills, and torque that rear wheel out like it was my worst enemy and there was no tomorrow.
It's easiest to put high torque on the rear wheel if you're in a low gear, not a high gear. Similarly, for a given pedaling force, chain tension is higher when you're in a smaller chainring.

If a wheel was so poorly-tensioned that pedaling forces were slackening spokes and causing them to fatigue, then it would break down constantly in normal use anyway.

The only way to make sense out of this tale is that the shop owner was trying to cover his poor work by blaming kids for random irrelevant things.
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Old 01-24-19, 01:09 PM
  #87  
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Was thinking about this thread, and "riding hard."

1-Often, the most interesting centuries/charity rides are hard, on the bike, and the rider.
Thunder Ridge in Lynchburg VA, the Dairyland Dare, the Hilly Hundred in Indiana, the Assault on Mount Mitchell. After all of these, the bike most likely will need a tear-down and refresh. The rider needs a transfusion and a massage.

2-I'm in that age group that rides hard to keep up, and generally does.
We ask the bikes to compensate, in some form, for the legs we no longer have, the extra weight we now carry. They're more than up for it.

3. I still ride the bike for a workout, but not like a banshee, not every day. I'm old, dammit.
I used to bolt out the door on my normal 10-mile run, no clock, no watch, just go as hard as possible for the 10, and then my day was "OK."
Extra runs were based on available time, and of course, peer pressure and a shoe sponsor sort of demanded that protocol.

I never could do that on a bike, but I did often warm up for 3-4 miles, then really hit it for about 20, then cool down the last mile or so.
No longer, but it's not the bike's fault.

Whenever I see a beautiful vintage bike like a Pinarello, so pretty you think it shouldn't be ridden,
and then, realizing all the stage wins, etc, on these same bikes, I don't worry about me riding them "hard."
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Old 01-24-19, 05:04 PM
  #88  
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I'm not in my 20's any more, or my thirties for that matter. I was never into bikes as a kid, I rode around my neighborhood growing up, but that was about it. Funny thing, I remember missing the bus on occasion and walking to school, where was my bike then?!?

Now I'm in a city, married, and working on being more curmudgeonly. I use my bikes everyday for commuting and errands, but not specifically for fitness. I've met some other riders though, on vintage steel no less! And we've been on a few group rides, and that's been a lot of fun.

Guess you'd say I'm working up towards riding my bike hard! Wish me luck!
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Old 01-24-19, 09:10 PM
  #89  
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Everything's relative.

I'm 5'11" and 260 pounds.I have an 18 inch neck, 17 inch arms, 38 inch waist, and 25 inch thighs. I can leg press 720 pounds for reps. According to the wattmeter on the spin bikes at the gym, I can top out at a peak wattage of over 2100.


I ride my 1986 Trek 310 Elance hard. I even time trial on it.



The only factory parts on this bike are the frame, fork, and headset. Since the above picture was taken, I've replaced the stem, bars and pedals.

I don't out and out abuse the bike, but I'm not gentle either. Since uphill rides are my weakest point (gravity IS NOT my friend. Neither is the square cube law) that is probably where I subject it to the most stress.

I've taken my son's 1983 Ross Force 1 on the local singletrack a few times:



I swapped out the tires for some Cheng Shin Jackrabbits since I took that picture.

I don't ride that bike nearly as hard as I do the Trek First of all, it has all vintage parts on it. Unlike road bikes, an old MTB is a LOT less capable than a modern MTB. You can ride a lot faster, and a lot more aggressively on modern gear. You also have a LOT more control. Second, and most importantly, I don't want to ride where I outstrip my skill level or my ability to recover from a mistake. I'd rather go a little bit slower or avoid a large dropoff than wipe out and injure myself to the point of missing work.
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Old 01-25-19, 09:02 AM
  #90  
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Originally Posted by RandolphCarter View Post
I'm 5'11" and 260 pounds.I have an 18 inch neck, 17 inch arms, 38 inch waist, and 25 inch thighs. I can leg press 720 pounds for reps. According to the wattmeter on the spin bikes at the gym, I can top out at a peak wattage of over 2100. I ride my 1986 Trek 310 Elance hard. I even time trial on it.
That right there is a pretty good ad for Trek's 531-triangle Elance frames.

No doubt in my mind, he'd have broken a few of the early Aluminums.
Trek, to their credit, replaced them under warranty.
At the time, Trek did not pay shop labor on the swap.
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Old 01-25-19, 03:23 PM
  #91  
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I know I'm hard on wheels because I'm not good at bunny hopping and probably wouldn't anyway because it's hard on the knees to huck a 25 lb or heavier bike. I try to unweight a bit before blasting across rough pavement but it's not always possible at 20 mph or faster. Especially on roads where it makes better sense to call out the good spots than the holes. I was reminded of that yesterday when I blasted across some rough patches and worried more about jolting my neck than damaging the bike. Much as I'm intrigued by lighter wheels with fewer spokes, I'd better stick with the 36 spokes.

And while I'm intrigued by the occasional older lightweight aluminum frame bike I see on craigslist, I'd probably better stick with steel and go for the lightest steel frame I can afford. Locally a fellow has both an early 90s Diamondback Master TG and an early 2000s Trek Alpha 1000, same price for either, under $200. Very tempting, since I've never owned an aluminum road bike or any bike with brifters. But I'd probably better stick with the steelie.
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Old 01-25-19, 04:27 PM
  #92  
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Old often get ridden harder than new...no fear riding over crappy pavement with steel fork but I'll slow down with my carbon forks...:-)
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Old 01-25-19, 06:50 PM
  #93  
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My one and only ride is a vintage '84 Peugeot that I purchased new. I ride it according to how I feel or the terrain commands at the time. And yes, the Helicomatic rear end still works as good as the day it was new. I'm 64 and don't ride as hard or long as I usta', but I don't treat it with kid gloves, either.
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Old 01-25-19, 08:30 PM
  #94  
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Originally Posted by vintagerando View Post
Yeah, I gaze upon them as well. Sometimes I even go down to the garage to check on them. No joke.
Join the club. As my bikes are also "living room" "decorations" just off to my left (besides the ones in my bedroom...small apartment unit), I will stare at them quite often. If I had a garage and they were in there, I'd be in there as well doing the same thing. Never makes me feel bad!
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Old 01-28-19, 07:01 AM
  #95  
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
Much as I'm intrigued by lighter wheels with fewer spokes, I'd better stick with the 36 spokes.
My Trek pictured above has Mavic Open Pro 32 spoke 700C rims with DT Swiss spokes and Shimano 105 (5800) hubs. They've held up perfectly.
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Old 01-28-19, 07:16 AM
  #96  
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Hard enough to keep up, whenever possible.


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Old 01-28-19, 12:09 PM
  #97  
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Do you ride your vintage bikes hard?

@rccardr definitely does.


I think I do.
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Old 01-29-19, 09:28 PM
  #98  
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Originally Posted by RobbieTunes View Post
That right there is a pretty good ad for Trek's 531-triangle Elance frames.

No doubt in my mind, he'd have broken a few of the early Aluminums.
Trek, to their credit, replaced them under warranty.
At the time, Trek did not pay shop labor on the swap.
Point of order: Main tubes on my ride are triple butted Ishiwata CrMo, not 531.

But, I agree with your assessment about early aluminum frames. I'll never ride one.

Before I put this together, I tried various bikes friends owned - a new, modern aluminum framed bike, a lower end carbon bike, and a slightly nicer carbon bike. The only way I'd end up with a new bike that had the components I wanted and didn't make me feel beat all to hell after a 15 mile ride was to spend A LOT on a really nice carbon bike, or less (but still too much for my tastes) on a steel bike.

I din't build up this frame just because it was old and vintage, I built it because it did the best job of meeting my needs AND staying in budget. The frame was free. Building it up with the wheelset from Velomine + tires + tubes + bar tape + Shimano 105 groupset from Pro Bike Kit got me the bike I've wanted for years, at about 2/3 the price of a new steel framed All-City. The 'vintage steel with patina' thing is a very definitely appreciated added bonus.

My riding would be less aggressive if it had the original parts.
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Old 01-30-19, 11:10 AM
  #99  
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At the weights admitted on this thread you are automatically riding your bike hard. Old bikes, and any racing bike new or old, were and are designed for much lighter riders. BITD I was once 6'1" and weighed 150. I was the biggest guy on any ride. My bike was built for riders like I was. So now I am 5'11-1/2" and 190#. On many rides I'm the smallest guy there. My bikes survive what I do to them but were not made for it.

It goes the other way too. The wife weighs 105# and has usually weighed less. Her RRB has been in continuous use since built in 1975. She doesn't ride huge miles but rides nearly every day and always has. That bike has been used straight through forty-three Chicago winters. Pulled her freewheel the other day, the original Regina freewheel. Looks like something I rode for a month. She gets new chains when she gets new paint. Bike is currently getting the third repaint, will get chain number four when reassembled. Old chain looks not bad, measures OK. But after 15 years she is ready for a new chain.
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Old 01-30-19, 01:36 PM
  #100  
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Originally Posted by 63rickert View Post
Old bikes, and any racing bike new or old, were and are designed for much lighter riders. My bikes survive what I do to them but were not made for it.

It goes the other way too. Her RRB has been in continuous use since built in 1975.
+1
Lightweight racing bikes are firstly designed as just a tool for the job. Nothing more to the competitive racer.

What becomes of them later or how they survive is up to us. Fact is, in the views of the majority public these old bikes are just trash.

🏁 Awesome about the RRB.


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