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GCN Replicates Stage1 of the 1903 TDF

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GCN Replicates Stage1 of the 1903 TDF

Old 07-27-19, 12:21 PM
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GCN Replicates Stage1 of the 1903 TDF

C&V taken to the extreme;



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Old 07-27-19, 03:31 PM
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I can only imagine he made the crank creaking worse by trying to reinstall the cotter.
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Old 07-27-19, 03:35 PM
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Just watched that this morning and it was entertaining but no I would not want to do it! My suffer fest days are behind me, although the route they took looked like a gorgeous ride. I once did 330 km in one day but that was a decade and many pounds ago on a modern bike, decent roads, with a group on a supported ride and very limited riding in the dark. No comparison.

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Old 07-27-19, 03:49 PM
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I liked the video. I wish they'd have spent more time talking about the bikes though. Good thing they used modern lights for the night riding.
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Old 07-27-19, 03:52 PM
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Carbide lamps can actually be decently bright. It's incandescents with dynamos that are awful.
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Old 07-27-19, 04:41 PM
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In 1903, the winning time was 17:45 on dirt/gravel.
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Old 07-27-19, 07:52 PM
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The feat of riding that far on those bikes shouldnt be understated. Those nighttime hours they didnt film must have been nerve wracking and miserable.

Would have been nice if they'd done more maintenance to the bikes prior to the ride. They both obviously made it but a cotter shouldn't fail out of the gate. Otherwise they should be commended. I thought his moustache was fake for most of it.
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Old 07-28-19, 06:44 AM
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The thicker the moustache gets, the thicker his accent gets. So Beaumont had to trim it down so we could understand him.

I cannot imagine that kind of time in a saddle that started the day uncomfortable.
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Old 07-28-19, 07:39 AM
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Originally Posted by iab View Post
In 1903, the winning time was 17:45 on dirt/gravel.
The first thing that came to mind while watching the video was you on your Frejus completing the 150km Dairyland Dare. The 467km completed in France is epic, but I expect you climbed more vertical during the Dairyland Dare.
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Old 07-28-19, 10:58 AM
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I've done a handful of 200k brevets, and can imagine doing a 300km on a modern bike, but that's outrageous.
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Old 07-28-19, 01:18 PM
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They should now make Si and Jeremy do the same route on modern bikes to see if it's any easier.
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Old 07-28-19, 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
They should now make Si and Jeremy do the same route on modern bikes to see if it's any easier.
I was thinking the same, it would be interesting to know how much faster. Certainly, a modern bike in near new condition has half the mechanical frictional loses than the museum pieces they rode. Modern bikes should be at least 5 mph faster.
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Old 07-28-19, 02:05 PM
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When James said something along the lines of his bike being "north of 20 kilos" I was like... whaaaaaa? I knew it would be heavy, but DANG. 45lbs and one gear? Ridiculous.
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Old 07-28-19, 02:27 PM
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I kept wondering when they'd break out the strychnine and cocaine, to be period-correct in doping.
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Old 07-29-19, 11:01 AM
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In a sort of way, my 1966 Schwinn Racer converted to 700c fixed gear replicates but yet doesn't match the extreme rake. Hope someday to acquire and experience one of the genuine hardcore of hardcore bikes.


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Old 07-29-19, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
I was thinking the same, it would be interesting to know how much faster. Certainly, a modern bike in near new condition has half the mechanical frictional loses than the museum pieces they rode. Modern bikes should be at least 5 mph faster.
Mechanical friction is a pretty small number, compared to everything else. I do think they would have had a much easier time if they were riding period correct wood rims and tubular tires. That would have been a huge improvement over the probably not original steel rims and really heavy looking wired on tires. Anyone else notice that the tires look like the are 50+ years old utility tires?

Anyone know what a road racer of this period would have weighed? I'm thinking maybe 23-24 lbs or so?
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Old 07-29-19, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
Mechanical friction is a pretty small number, compared to everything else. I do think they would have had a much easier time if they were riding period correct wood rims and tubular tires. That would have been a huge improvement over the probably not original steel rims and really heavy looking wired on tires. Anyone else notice that the tires look like the are 50+ years old utility tires?

Anyone know what a road racer of this period would have weighed? I'm thinking maybe 23-24 lbs or so?
Tires are included under mechanical loses.
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Old 07-29-19, 11:51 AM
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Truly amazing!

Though they should have shown and talked about the bikes more.

I keep seeing 100-ish year old, wood wheel, bikes for sale, can't wait to find an affordable one. Even if it's just a show piece and only good for riding around my block.
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Old 07-29-19, 12:35 PM
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Yes, pity the most important component of a bicycle, other than the frame... the wheelset... seems wrong for the era and purpose. Road racers of this era had wooden rims and tubular tyres or at very least narrow section road racing wired-on tyres like the Dunlop Racing Reds. This looks more appropriate for a Raleigh No. 1 roadster. I suspect if you put this wheelset on a modern racing frame, you'd get about the same results. Wheels and tyres matter... a lot.

By the first five years of the 20th century, the modern racing bike was already with us. The Rudge-Whitworth No. 5 Speed Iron, possibly the most successful commercially made road racer of its day, came out in 1905. It weighed 20-22 lbs. with wooden rims. And won more RRA and time trial records of any machine of its day with timings that few on this board could emulate on the newest models.

Probably the biggest improvement in road racing isn't the bicycle or the rider but the roads themselves, especially on the Continent.

But yes, an interesting video recreation of Iron Men in Wool Jerseys on Steel Bicycles. And... no ear buds, either. Imagine that.

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Old 07-29-19, 12:42 PM
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Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
I wish they'd have spent more time talking about the bikes though.
I never had the impression those guys know much about bikes.
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Old 07-29-19, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Kovkov View Post
I never had the impression those guys know much about bikes.
Yeah if they had, they probably would have overhauled those old bikes before taking them on an epic trip through France.

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Old 07-29-19, 01:32 PM
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Sometimes it's more about the ride than the bike. I'm sure they wished that they had access to period correct equipment that was optimized for the TdF. I'm under the impression that these bikes were the best option found during a limited search, and that additional discussion of the equipment was not beneficial. Considering most of us couldn't do a 1/4 of that distance on any pre-WWI bike, respect is due.
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Old 07-29-19, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
Sometimes it's more about the ride than the bike. I'm sure they wished that they had access to period correct equipment that was optimized for the TdF. I'm under the impression that these bikes were the best option found during a limited search, and that additional discussion of the equipment was not beneficial. Considering most of us couldn't do a 1/4 of that distance on any pre-WWI bike, respect is due.
I don't think giving them a hard time for their lack of mechanical aptitude shows a lack of respect for the ride. Besides what's the point of a thread without different points of view?

I can't see how anyone who watches this doesn't think that this was a heck of a hard ride.
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Old 07-29-19, 01:46 PM
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Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
I don't think giving them a hard time for their lack of mechanical aptitude shows a lack of respect for the ride. Besides what's the point of a thread without different points of view?
Exactly. The title of the video includes "...utterly stupid bikes" and the availability of utterly brilliant period-correct bikes for such a long ride was probably zero. I'm certain that owners of perfectly maintained and perfectly period-correct bikes that are nearly identical to the bikes that competed the TdF don't enthusiastically give them out.

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Old 07-29-19, 02:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
I'm certain that owners of perfectly maintained and perfectly period-correct bikes that are nearly identical to the bikes that competed the TdF don't enthusiastically give them out.
Yes, and such bikes are not stupid.
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