Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

Am I too fat?

Old 05-24-08, 12:06 AM
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WhichWay
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Am I too fat?

Hello all,

I started riding a few months ago commuting to work. I've been riding 16 - 50 miles per day depending on if I take the train part of the way. Last month I switched from my Walmart Mountain Bike to a Giant Cypress DX that my LBS recommended:
http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/...le/1268/29329/

The bike overall is great, I've put about 500 miles on it so far, however I'm having constant problems with the back wheel for a bike that is basically just over a month old. The bike shop has already replaced the hub and a spoke. Today I noticed that another spoke had broken. The LBS is doing me right by completely replacing the entire wheel, but I'm just wondering if its my weight that is causing the problems.

I'm down from 320lbs to 290lbs. I also have a rack with gear and work clothes that's about 15lbs. I never hop curbs, never ride off road, and try to take the smoothest route LA city streets allow.

Did I just get a bad wheel, or am I going to look forward to issues with this bike every week, possibly due to my size?

Thanks,
Dave
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Old 05-24-08, 12:37 AM
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How many spokes does the wheel have?
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Old 05-24-08, 12:48 AM
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WhichWay,

First off, welcome to the Clyde forum.

I am larger than you at 330lb or so. I saw that your bike has 32 spokes and they are 14 guage. I personally ride 36 spokes on my bikes and have had no trouble. Why did your shop replace the hub? Spokes I can see but what was wrong with the hub?
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Old 05-24-08, 01:27 AM
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hunh...I'm currently running 32 spokes on my commuters BUT they were problematic until they were rebuilt with DT Swiss spokes.

No issues since.

And I started out at 337 and ran the stockers into the ground by the time I was 270...

HI!!
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Old 05-24-08, 04:03 AM
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That is a wheel builder or spoke quality issue. I weigh 340 and I have only broken one spoke in 9,000 miles.
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Old 05-24-08, 07:06 AM
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WhichWay
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Originally Posted by wooljersey View Post
Why did your shop replace the hub? Spokes I can see but what was wrong with the hub?
The wheel started making a grinding sound when I stopped pedaling or spun the wheel by hand.
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Old 05-24-08, 07:26 AM
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Spend the money to have a better wheelset built for the bike. The one thing that us bigger fellers should not skimp on are wheels, and the stock wheelsets on many lower-end hybrids are pretty crappy. .

That said...what is the recommended max pressure of the tires and what are you pumping it up to before each ride? (you are checking the pressure before each ride, right?)
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Old 05-24-08, 07:48 AM
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I had the same trouble with my rear wheel when I first started riding, but I was a lot heavier then, 410 down to 285 now. I did have to buy a stronger wheel, but like others have said, it also has a lot to do with the spokes and wheel builder because the new wheel also gave me problems. My LBS then had that wheel rebuilt with DT Swiss spokes and I had them re-tension the spokes every 300 miles a couple of times. I'm happy to say that I have to had an ounce of trouble with the wheel in over 2500 miles. I also asked the same question as you, "am I too fat to ride?", but my LBS insisted that I was not, and like I said before, I was a lot heavier than you.

Best of luck and welcome.
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Old 05-24-08, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by chipcom View Post
Spend the money to have a better wheelset built for the bike. The one thing that us bigger fellers should not skimp on are wheels, and the stock wheelsets on many lower-end hybrids are pretty crappy. .
Chipcom gives quality advice here. Rare for him
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Old 05-24-08, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by jaxgtr View Post
Chipcom gives quality advice here. Rare for him
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Old 05-24-08, 08:31 AM
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Originally Posted by chipcom View Post
Spend the money to have a better wheelset built for the bike. The one thing that us bigger fellers should not skimp on are wheels, and the stock wheelsets on many lower-end hybrids are pretty crappy. .
+1 And if you want to save money, you could start with just having a rear wheel made. Front wheels take less abuse and you could probably keep riding the stock front.
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Old 05-24-08, 09:43 AM
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I started riding at 325, had custom wheel builds on both bikes and have not had any issues with spokes or hubs. I deal with trashing components a lot as well. In the year I've been riding I've popped 4 chains (on 2 bikes), ruined 2 cassettes, spun my left crank arm off repeatedly, on two bikes.

Yea, I have to replace parts more often than most, but I'm too fat NOT to ride IMO. If you don't have a strong wheelset, it's worth the money. Also, make sure to check your chain for stretching every few weeks.
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Old 05-24-08, 09:58 AM
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I am having a set of 36 hole, double butted spokes, deep v rims with ultegra hubs being built for 240. I had the hubs already but even if I would have purchased the hubs it would have been about 330. I am having them built at Universal Cycles in Portland. They seem pretty easy to work with.
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Old 05-25-08, 08:54 PM
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Thanks for the input everyone. If I continue to have problems I'll talk to the LSB about replacing the back wheel with something a bit more heavy duty.

Since my Giant is in the shop waiting for the new wheel, I took my girls out in our trailer attached to my mountain bike. I got home and realized I had broke two spokes while out on the back wheel. I guess I'm living up to the nickname the guys at work have given me, "The bike destroyer".

Was a really nice riding day though:



And the girls like the rest stop at our local kid's pizza place

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