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My first long ride. Any tips?

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My first long ride. Any tips?

Old 08-26-10, 03:14 PM
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sauze
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My first long ride. Any tips?

So this weekend I'll be taking my first major ride. A friend and I are doing the local MS Bike Tour (from Stonewall To Gimli) I want to make sure my bike is in as good of condition as possible and that I've got everything I need. Only thing I can think I need to do is scrub my braking surfaces (use acetone? will nail polish remover work?) Thanks in advance.

* Oh I'll be riding a 77 Super Course
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Old 08-26-10, 03:21 PM
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Good luck! I hope you have a great ride. I have done several long rides on vintage bikes, and there are one or two things to look out for. I would go over every nut, bolt and lock-ring and make sure it is tight. Loose small parts that won't fall off on your commute to work WILL fall off due to the constant road vibration of a long, sustained ride. Last month did back to back 200k on my '65 Cinelli, and I thought I had gone over everything carefully. However, I did NOT check the bb fixed cup, and halfway back to Toronto from Niagara falls my cottered crank started to unwind itself to the point that the drive side almost fell of while I was riding. Anyway, check EVERYTHING, including your spoke tension.

Also this seems very basic but make sure you have the tools and know-how to change a flat.

Have fun!

Last edited by devinfan; 08-26-10 at 03:21 PM. Reason: Crappy spelling
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Old 08-26-10, 03:23 PM
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I hope when you say your first major ride that you do not mean it is the first long ride you are doing. Hydration and fuel. Eat before you feel any hunger and drink frequently. Would not bother with the braking surfaces. Be sure you have a small tool kit with you, but may not be such a concern as most MS rides are well supported.
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Old 08-26-10, 03:25 PM
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Rock On Super Course!!

I dunno anything about scrubbing brake surfaces with solvent, but I'd say bring a small tool kit with an adjustable wrench, some tire levers, a fresh tube, a small piece of lanyard or cord (can be infinitely handy in a pinch) and if you've got any hex bolts on your bike bring an allen wrench or two.

More importantly be sure the Motor is well supplied. Bring water bottles and a snack to eat during the ride.
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Old 08-26-10, 03:31 PM
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It is indeed the first major ride I've done (everyone's got to start somewhere) I'd say the most I've ridden in a single ride is 35ish Km. Plus I doubt the rims have had a major scrubbing since... 1978 or so. I've got a nice little handlebar bag with a few choice tools I'll be bringing with, and devinfan I'll make sure to give EVERYTHING a good tightening and what not. Thanks for the reminder

edit: @Zaphod Snacks are no problem, scoured that "I'm Hungry" thread for suggestions, and luckily my friend has an extra camel back he's lending me. Plus there's apparently well stocked food/water stations on the route.

Last edited by sauze; 08-26-10 at 03:44 PM.
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Old 08-26-10, 03:33 PM
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Originally Posted by sauze View Post
It is indeed the first major ride I've done (everyone's got to start somewhere) I'd say the most I've ridden in a single ride is 35ish Km. Plus I doubt the rims have had a major scrubbing since... 1978 or so. I've got a nice little handlebar bag with a few choice tools I'll be bringing with, and devinfan I'll make sure to give EVERYTHING a good tightening and what not. Thanks for the reminder
How old are your tires and tubes?
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Old 08-26-10, 03:34 PM
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new on both counts
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Old 08-26-10, 04:02 PM
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+1 on water & snacks. Pre-hydrate beforehand, and during the ride be sure to drink before you are thirsty & eat before you feel hungry. According to the map link above, it's about 80km (~50 miles). Certainly doable. Looks like a lot of straight roads out there!
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Old 08-26-10, 04:20 PM
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My advice .. have fun!


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Old 08-26-10, 06:27 PM
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Zaphod Beeblebrox


I'd say bring a small piece of lanyard or cord (can be infinitely handy in a pinch)

"edited for content"

**********? So much extra wieght when he can just shred a pair of shorts if he needs to tie something off
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Old 08-26-10, 06:31 PM
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Keep moving, but go at your own pace. Stop, take a break when you feel the need. Yeah, eat and drink, you'll make it.

The last long ride I did, someone said, just do 10 miles at a time... just keep moving.
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Old 08-26-10, 06:50 PM
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Originally Posted by gaucho777 View Post
+1 on water & snacks. Pre-hydrate beforehand, and during the ride be sure to drink before you are thirsty & eat before you feel hungry. According to the map link above, it's about 80km (~50 miles). Certainly doable. Looks like a lot of straight roads out there!
I've made this mistake a few times, never again.
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Old 08-26-10, 07:02 PM
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+1 to all.

Have some basic repair stuff but being an MS ride it's supported isn't it?
If your tires and tubes are BRAND new I'd put 20 on them before the MS ride...be sure you don't have anything internal that's going to flat you 5 miles into the MS ride.
I'm weird but I like to have whole wheat pasta and eggs (two yolks, four whites) for breakfast before an especially long ride. Good balance of carbs, protein, and fat.
Drink a lot, if you're not urinating occasionally you're not drinking enough.
Eat often, I like to eat a bit every 30 minutes or so rather than a big lump at once.

Have a ball...the most important thing.
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Old 08-26-10, 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by khatfull View Post
+1 to all.

Have some basic repair stuff but being an MS ride it's supported isn't it?
If your tires and tubes are BRAND new I'd put 20 on them before the MS ride...be sure you don't have anything internal that's going to flat you 5 miles into the MS ride.
I'm weird but I like to have whole wheat pasta and eggs (two yolks, four whites) for breakfast before an especially long ride. Good balance of carbs, protein, and fat.
Drink a lot, if you're not urinating occasionally you're not drinking enough.
Eat often, I like to eat a bit every 30 minutes or so rather than a big lump at once.

Have a ball...the most important thing.
The Minnesota long bike ride diet!

I'm with you sir.
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Old 08-26-10, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by sauze View Post
So this weekend I'll be taking my first major ride. A friend and I are doing the local MS Bike Tour (from Stonewall To Gimli) I want to make sure my bike is in as good of condition as possible and that I've got everything I need. Only thing I can think I need to do is scrub my braking surfaces (use acetone? will nail polish remover work?) Thanks in advance.

* Oh I'll be riding a 77 Super Course
You should read the Charity and Events section> A LOT of threads specific to MS tours with a LOT of information. I modernized my Bianchi so when I was riding next to a fellow dogging it on his Peugot PX-10 (A REAL ONE with Reynolds!!) I helped him up the BIG hill we were climbing. It is the least I could've done after gitting rid of the crappy Shimano Z-series for SRAM Rival .

They provide A LOT of water and food so don't worry too much, try to travel with a group that is the speed of your friend and yourself, drafting will make this ride REAL fun and improve your wheel sucking. Take the hills nice and easy until you get warmed up (15-25km in) there may be a lot of hills . Take every rest stop, go-rest-go is a great endurance tactic that mountain climbers use.

I did 180km over 2 days and biked home (another 40km).

PS if you are riding tubulars bring FIVE or so because you will be the ONLY one with tubbies I guarantee it. I got a flat 2km before the ride and had myself a group of folks watching the tubular experience unfold (literally?). I suppose I could've ridden the rest because it wasn't that bad of a puncture.

Last edited by pcfxer; 08-26-10 at 07:48 PM. Reason: tube story
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Old 08-26-10, 07:56 PM
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The bike, day before:
Tires for cuts, bulges, etc.
Rims for dents, bulges, etc. Clean the braking surface (I use rubbing alcohol).
Spokes for any looseness.
Hubs for cleanliness, especially on the end.
Pedals tight to the cranks.
BB tight in the shell.
Bottle cages snug.
Cable clamping points, all good.
No frayed cable ends.
All adjustments right on.
QR's working on the calipers.
Make sure caliper barrell adjusters are intact and not fully extended.
Brake pads clean.
Headset is not loose.
Stem is tight and straight.
Bars are where you want them and tight.
Wrap is not loose or gouged. Bar end plugs snug.
Brake levers are tight on the bar.
Shifters are secure and adjusted.
FD is tight on the seat tube and lubed.
RD is tight on the hangar and lubed.
Crank arm bolts are snug all around.
Chain is clean and lubed (night before)
Seat post snug and clean, saddle snug and clean.
Seat bag is properly packed and mounted, no frayed straps.
Bike is clean, lubed, adjusted.

Day of:
Pump your tires up in the morning.
Make sure your wheels are set in firmly and the QR's are tight.
Make sure the brake QR's are closed.

You, the engine:
Good night's sleep. Hydrated and well fed.
Shorts fit and are not pinching.
Jersey is comfortable and ready for a long day.
Eye protection.
Helmet.
Good socks.
Shoes are clean.
DOUBLE-CHECK the cleats and mounting screws.
Helmet is clean, no loose pads, straps are adjusted and not frayed.
Gloves, if you use them, are not falling apart or about to.
Food on board or ready for rest stops.
Know the course of follow someone who does.
Cell phone or know someone who's equipped.

Hygeine is important:
Toe nails trimmed.
Fingernails trimmed.
Sun block/chapstick.
Body Glide (do not use the chapstick)
Cleanliness. Period. Everywhere....everywhere.

In your seat bag:
CO2 (2) if you don't take a pump.
Money
Cell phone
Tire lever
Tube or two
Presta adapter if needed
ID.
In a group, the seat bag stuff isn't for you, it's for the person who needs it. Someone else would come through for you, if you needed it. Cyclists are like that.

Attitude:
Take it easy at first, there's plenty of road to burn up later.
Have fun. Meet people. Make friends. Get numbers. Network.
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Last edited by RobbieTunes; 08-26-10 at 08:00 PM.
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Old 08-26-10, 08:29 PM
  #17  
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You musta been in the military or something.

J


Originally Posted by RobbieTunes View Post
The bike, day before:
Tires for cuts, bulges, etc.
Rims for dents, bulges, etc. Clean the braking surface (I use rubbing alcohol).
Spokes for any looseness.
Hubs for cleanliness, especially on the end.
Pedals tight to the cranks.
BB tight in the shell.
Bottle cages snug.
Cable clamping points, all good.
No frayed cable ends.
All adjustments right on.
QR's working on the calipers.
Make sure caliper barrell adjusters are intact and not fully extended.
Brake pads clean.
Headset is not loose.
Stem is tight and straight.
Bars are where you want them and tight.
Wrap is not loose or gouged. Bar end plugs snug.
Brake levers are tight on the bar.
Shifters are secure and adjusted.
FD is tight on the seat tube and lubed.
RD is tight on the hangar and lubed.
Crank arm bolts are snug all around.
Chain is clean and lubed (night before)
Seat post snug and clean, saddle snug and clean.
Seat bag is properly packed and mounted, no frayed straps.
Bike is clean, lubed, adjusted.

Day of:
Pump your tires up in the morning.
Make sure your wheels are set in firmly and the QR's are tight.
Make sure the brake QR's are closed.

You, the engine:
Good night's sleep. Hydrated and well fed.
Shorts fit and are not pinching.
Jersey is comfortable and ready for a long day.
Eye protection.
Helmet.
Good socks.
Shoes are clean.
DOUBLE-CHECK the cleats and mounting screws.
Helmet is clean, no loose pads, straps are adjusted and not frayed.
Gloves, if you use them, are not falling apart or about to.
Food on board or ready for rest stops.
Know the course of follow someone who does.
Cell phone or know someone who's equipped.

Hygeine is important:
Toe nails trimmed.
Fingernails trimmed.
Sun block/chapstick.
Body Glide (do not use the chapstick)
Cleanliness. Period. Everywhere....everywhere.

In your seat bag:
CO2 (2) if you don't take a pump.
Money
Cell phone
Tire lever
Tube or two
Presta adapter if needed
ID.
In a group, the seat bag stuff isn't for you, it's for the person who needs it. Someone else would come through for you, if you needed it. Cyclists are like that.

Attitude:
Take it easy at first, there's plenty of road to burn up later.
Have fun. Meet people. Make friends. Get numbers. Network.
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Old 08-26-10, 08:30 PM
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clean socks?
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Old 08-27-10, 10:23 AM
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Thanks for all the awesome advice (Robbie, great checklist!) luckily the terrain is flat as a pancake (the Manitoba way) and yesterday and picked up a few protein bars + energy gel packs and a few extra pairs of good socks. The tires and tubes aren't BRAND new (probably two months old)

I'm feeling quite good about the whole thing, did a 30km ride yesterday with my buddy and kept our average speed above 30 KMH (19ish MPH) and feel just fine today. Not worried about the ride down (Stonewall TO Gimli) but it's a two day event and the ride back might be .... challenging. In any case I'll report back this weekend and I'll try and take tons of pics. Thanks again for all the help.
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Old 08-27-10, 11:54 AM
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I don't recall you saying how long the ride is, but follow everyone's advice and you'll do fine. Along with what's been said about food/hydration, let me add a few things:

1) If it's gonna be hot that day, on the day prior drink water all day till you pee relatively clear. Then you'll start off with a good hydration base that you can easily manage.

2) Pace yourself. Lots of guys go off like roman candles at the start of their 1st long ride, because they always do that with good success on their shorter rides. Might be a mistake.

3) If you get into a headwind, find a big guy and get behind him.
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Old 08-27-10, 12:06 PM
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I did forget to mention the length, it's about 80 KM (about 50 Miles) each way. Saturday we ride there, Sunday we ride back. Luckily my riding partner's a good size so if it's windy he's leading the way.
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Old 08-27-10, 12:34 PM
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I like to eat a big plate of toast and a banana before a century. But eat a couple of hours before.
And I now use hammer gel mid ride. I can't believe I used to think this stuff was a placebo.
Anyway, pack a banana or two and some energy bars. Don't forget a recovery drink if your going to hammer hard as some people tend to do when riding with others.

Last edited by ricohman; 08-27-10 at 02:00 PM.
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Old 08-27-10, 12:39 PM
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50 miles on flat ground? You'll be fine - you'll be able to do that with 2 big water bottles and a PayDay.
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Old 08-27-10, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by RobbieTunes View Post
The bike, day before:
Tires for cuts, bulges, etc.
Rims for dents, bulges, etc. Clean the braking surface (I use rubbing alcohol).
Spokes for any looseness.
Hubs for cleanliness, especially on the end.
Pedals tight to the cranks.
BB tight in the shell.
Bottle cages snug.
Cable clamping points, all good.
No frayed cable ends.
All adjustments right on.
QR's working on the calipers.
Make sure caliper barrell adjusters are intact and not fully extended.
Brake pads clean.
Headset is not loose.
Stem is tight and straight.
Bars are where you want them and tight.
Wrap is not loose or gouged. Bar end plugs snug.
Brake levers are tight on the bar.
Shifters are secure and adjusted.
FD is tight on the seat tube and lubed.
RD is tight on the hangar and lubed.
Crank arm bolts are snug all around.
Chain is clean and lubed (night before)
Seat post snug and clean, saddle snug and clean.
Seat bag is properly packed and mounted, no frayed straps.
Bike is clean, lubed, adjusted.

Day of:
Pump your tires up in the morning.
Make sure your wheels are set in firmly and the QR's are tight.
Make sure the brake QR's are closed.

You, the engine:
Good night's sleep. Hydrated and well fed.
Shorts fit and are not pinching.
Jersey is comfortable and ready for a long day.
Eye protection.
Helmet.
Good socks.
Shoes are clean.
DOUBLE-CHECK the cleats and mounting screws.
Helmet is clean, no loose pads, straps are adjusted and not frayed.
Gloves, if you use them, are not falling apart or about to.
Food on board or ready for rest stops.
Know the course of follow someone who does.
Cell phone or know someone who's equipped.

Hygeine is important:
Toe nails trimmed.
Fingernails trimmed.
Sun block/chapstick.
Body Glide (do not use the chapstick)
Cleanliness. Period. Everywhere....everywhere.

In your seat bag:
CO2 (2) if you don't take a pump.
Money
Cell phone
Tire lever
Tube or two
Presta adapter if needed
ID.
In a group, the seat bag stuff isn't for you, it's for the person who needs it. Someone else would come through for you, if you needed it. Cyclists are like that.

Attitude:
Take it easy at first, there's plenty of road to burn up later.
Have fun. Meet people. Make friends. Get numbers. Network.
Are you kidding me? This is an awesome list I just copied this and saved it to my desktop!
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Old 08-27-10, 01:20 PM
  #25  
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Originally Posted by sauze View Post
Thanks for all the awesome advice (Robbie, great checklist!) luckily the terrain is flat as a pancake (the Manitoba way) and yesterday and picked up a few protein bars + energy gel packs and a few extra pairs of good socks. The tires and tubes aren't BRAND new (probably two months old)

I'm feeling quite good about the whole thing, did a 30km ride yesterday with my buddy and kept our average speed above 30 KMH (19ish MPH) and feel just fine today. Not worried about the ride down (Stonewall TO Gimli) but it's a two day event and the ride back might be .... challenging. In any case I'll report back this weekend and I'll try and take tons of pics. Thanks again for all the help.
My route 180km over 2days finished with an easy 64km, early morning ride. The morning ride took no more than 2.5 hours including 12 minutes for flat tire change. In my opinion, the first day was the hardest perhaps it was because the "toughest" part was behind everybody.

30kph+ on an old machine is quite good, do you draft on your rides? If you can go out for a 60-70km ride a few days before you really should. I felt a BIG difference my second time out on a 70km ride; 30km is a joke now .
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