Notices
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.

Embarrassing Test Ride

Old 09-21-10, 12:55 PM
  #1  
Starting over
Thread Starter
 
CraigB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 4,077

Bikes: 1990 Trek 1500; 2006 Gary Fisher Marlin; 2011 Cannondale Synapse Alloy 105; 2012 Catrike Trail

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Embarrassing Test Ride

While I'm still 18.6 pounds away from breaking 200, at which point I promised myself a new road bike, I've been doing research around town as to what brand and model I might like to get. Today I test rode a Felt Z5 at a shop a couple of miles from my office. The sales guy told me it might be hard to start out on since it was on the big ring, but a gradual downhill slope in the parking lot helped.

So I'm heading down the lot, knowing I'll have to climb back up to the starting point soon, so I decide to get back on the small ring ahead of time. Here's where it gets embarrassing. I'd never ridden a bike with "brifters" before. I didn't know which lever went which direction, gear-wise. I know enough from 40 years of riding to know the front and rear levers work in reverse from one another, but not knowing how the rear one worked meant I didn't know how the front one did, either. So I guessed. Wrong. The front derailleur went outboard of the big ring just enough to drop the chain.

I dismounted and started to try to get the chain back on the chainring, and the salesman came jogging up. We then went through a virtual Abbott and Costello routine of my trying to hold the rear wheel off the pavement while manipulating the front levers to move the cage the direction he needed it to go so he had room to get the chain on the teeth. It took several attempts on my part to remember which lever to use to get it where it needed to go. Not exactly a "smooth ride."

The bike itself was fantastic, though, and an extremely "smooth ride." If I were already under that 200 pound mark, I would have bought it. But I promised myself (and more importantly my wife) I'd wait, even if that means I might miss out on a year-end special or two. Though I gotta say, I'm SORELY tempted to go back to the shop and see if they'd do some kind of layaway for me. I'd do it if we hadn't just had to replace an $850 computer board in our well pump control panel, and if I wasn't about to take a week off without pay so I can go on vacation with my wife and her family.
CraigB is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 01:13 PM
  #2  
Senior Member
 
jr59's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: the 904, Jax fl
Posts: 2,286
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 9 Posts
LOL! Don't worry everyone has done it, or something like it!

Good job on your weight loss and new bike!
jr59 is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 01:15 PM
  #3  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: DFW
Posts: 1,556
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 24 Post(s)
Liked 597 Times in 105 Posts
When I was starting out with Shimano brifters, I remembered that the small lever on the brifters moves you to the smaller ring. Then you have to remember that the small ring is a lower gear in the front, but a higher gear in the back.
hammond9705 is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 01:38 PM
  #4  
Senior Member
 
exile's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Binghamton, NY
Posts: 2,896

Bikes: Workcycles FR8, 2016 Jamis Coda Comp, 2008 Surly Long Haul Trucker

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 5 Posts
I had the same problem the first time I tried double tap shifters. I was in Ithaca test riding a bike and for those unfamiliar it is very hilly. I felt like an idiot when I had to walk back to the shop. I pedalled away with no problem but coming back the first thing out of my mouth was "how do you shift these things"?
exile is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 02:10 PM
  #5  
Senior Member
 
rumrunn6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: 25 miles northwest of Boston
Posts: 29,593

Bikes: Bottecchia Sprint, GT Timberline 29r, Marin Muirwoods 29er, Trek FX Alpha 7.0

Mentioned: 112 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5234 Post(s)
Liked 3,608 Times in 2,357 Posts
sales guy should have been embarrassed for giving you a test bike without testing the adjustment. good way to get someone hurt.
rumrunn6 is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 02:12 PM
  #6  
Senior Member
 
magohn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Woodinville, WA
Posts: 1,460
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Me too
I bought my 2010 Roubaix after being 20 yrs away from modern shifters and the Roubaixs SRAM shifters were a total mystery to me - I thought one lever went up the gears and the other down the gears (logical?). I test-drove the bike and rode back to the store in the hardest possible gear as I had managed to run all the way through the gears and the levers had no place else to go I chatted with the salesman while gasping and sweating from the tough gearing and zero fitness level...

I still bought the bike and its so much nicer now that I can change gears correctly
magohn is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 02:15 PM
  #7  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Bay Area, Calif.
Posts: 7,239
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 659 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 7 Times in 6 Posts
Originally Posted by rumrunn6
sales guy should have been embarrassed for giving you a test bike without testing the adjustment. good way to get someone hurt.
Agreed. The limit screw should be set so the chain doesn't go too far to the outside no matter which way you push the lever.
prathmann is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 02:30 PM
  #8  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Buffalo NY
Posts: 1,035

Bikes: Gerry Fisher Nirvana, LeMond Buenos Aires

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Andy Schleck lost the Tour De France due to a dropped chain... so don't feel bad. Everyone can make a mistake. Brifters are definitely nice, but it takes the body/brain a little practive before using them becomes second nature. When I got my road bike I'd been riding my hybrid every day for about a year (commuting). The action on brifter is completely different. It took a few ridees before the shifting became semi-automatic. Now I can do fine adjustments without giving it any thought.

Enjoy the ride,
André
andrelam is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 02:44 PM
  #9  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Buffalo, NY
Posts: 100

Bikes: Trek 2300, Cannondale ??, Univega Hyrid

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
just went from campy brifters to bar end shifters on my new sojourn, had the same problem of what direction to go....

they should have had the limit screws set right before allowing a customer out on a bike.
root11 is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 05:44 PM
  #10  
Starting over
Thread Starter
 
CraigB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 4,077

Bikes: 1990 Trek 1500; 2006 Gary Fisher Marlin; 2011 Cannondale Synapse Alloy 105; 2012 Catrike Trail

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
I did finally figure out the easy way to remember - that in each case the small lever shifts to a smaller sprocket, and the big one shifts to a bigger. Then all the brain has to do is remember bigger in front is harder, bigger in back is easier, a concept I've understood and lived with since my Schwinn Varsity days.

The issue of the derailleur's adjustment came to mind as I was back at my office desk. Not only was the travel too great, but it sure seemed to me that there were three detents or clicks on that shifter, as if it were made for a triple and not a compact. I don't know if that's a setting, or an adjustment issue, or if it was simply the wrong shifter for the bike (something I highly doubt, but like I said, I have no experience with these animals). Heck, I wouldn't even rule out that that part of it wasn't just in my imagination. But you're right - at the very least, the travel adjustment should have been trimmed to prevent that sort of thing. So I guess the shop and I were equally stupid. No, they were stupid - I was ignorant.

BTW, I loved the bike so much, I had worked myself up into thinking a wise thing to do would be to go back after work and see if they'd take a deposit to hold it until I'm officially at my reward weight. My brother talked me down during the course of a one-hour phone call. I really need to wait for many reasons that I won't go into here. If the bike isn't there when it's time, it won't be the end of the world, and if it is, maybe it'll be marked down even more.
CraigB is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 07:47 PM
  #11  
Senior Member
 
Zoxe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Indianapolis!
Posts: 503

Bikes: Giant Cypress DX, Bianchi Imola, Surly Cross Check 105, Twin6 Standard TI FSU

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Liked 37 Times in 22 Posts
Hey CraigB,

I live in Pendleton and work on the east side. Curious which shop you were at? Trying to put it in my mental viewfinder.
Zoxe is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 09:06 PM
  #12  
Senior Member
 
cyclist2000's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Up
Posts: 4,695

Bikes: Masi, Giant TCR, Eisentraut (retired), Jamis Aurora Elite, Zullo, Cannondale, 84 & 93 Stumpjumpers, Waterford, Tern D8, Bianchi, Gunner Roadie, Serotta, Serotta Duette, was gifted a Diamond Back

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 305 Post(s)
Liked 2,038 Times in 604 Posts
What's really confusing is that I have 8 bikes with all different shift levers, dt friction, dt indexing, bar end, campy ergo brifter, trigger shifters, thumb shifters and the last bike I got had Shimano 105. I had always thought that when I brifters that they would only be one brand so it wouldn't be so confusing.

I just remember that on the shimano brifters that the chain moves in the same direction as the large lever.

I am not planning on getting sram brifters. Those seem really confusing.
cyclist2000 is offline  
Old 09-21-10, 10:37 PM
  #13  
Senior Member
 
dbikingman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Spokane/Tri-Cities WA
Posts: 1,385

Bikes: mountain bike, road bike

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
The issue of the derailleur's adjustment came to mind as I was back at my office desk. Not only was the travel too great, but it sure seemed to me that there were three detents or clicks on that shifter, as if it were made for a triple and not a compact. I don't know if that's a setting, or an adjustment issue, or if it was simply the wrong shifter for the bike (something I highly doubt, but like I said, I have no experience with these animals).

On my bike with the triple I have two positions for the middle chain rig. It adjusts the derailleur so the chain can go from large to small cog with no rubbing.
dbikingman is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 01:12 AM
  #14  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 5,428

Bikes: Cervelo RS, Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Pro, Schwinn Typhoon, Nashbar touring, custom steel MTB

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Originally Posted by CraigB
The issue of the derailleur's adjustment came to mind as I was back at my office desk. Not only was the travel too great, but it sure seemed to me that there were three detents or clicks on that shifter, as if it were made for a triple and not a compact. I don't know if that's a setting, or an adjustment issue, or if it was simply the wrong shifter for the bike (something I highly doubt, but like I said, I have no experience with these animals).
Most modern integrated shift systems have one (or more) "trim" positions that place the derailleur in between the two standard stops. This helps prevent the chain from rubbing on the front derailleur when you're cross-chained.
sstorkel is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 07:26 AM
  #15  
Starting over
Thread Starter
 
CraigB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 4,077

Bikes: 1990 Trek 1500; 2006 Gary Fisher Marlin; 2011 Cannondale Synapse Alloy 105; 2012 Catrike Trail

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by Zoxe
Hey CraigB,

I live in Pendleton and work on the east side. Curious which shop you were at? Trying to put it in my mental viewfinder.
It was Bicycle Outfitters on the west side - Country Club Rd just on the north side of 10th St. If I remember correctly from what I read in Indianapolis monthly, the owner is the son or grandson (don't remember which) of the founder of Matthew's on the east side on Pendleton Pike.

Interestingly, the sales guy I spoke with said the shop was founded originally as an internet retailer, but evolved in to an actual bike shop because many of their suppliers preferred to do business with a place that had an actual storefront retail operation. Their website is at bicycleoutfittersindy.com, I think.
CraigB is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 07:28 AM
  #16  
Starting over
Thread Starter
 
CraigB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 4,077

Bikes: 1990 Trek 1500; 2006 Gary Fisher Marlin; 2011 Cannondale Synapse Alloy 105; 2012 Catrike Trail

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by cyclist2000
I just remember that on the shimano brifters that the chain moves in the same direction as the large lever.
That's a great little mnemonic. I'll use that one.
CraigB is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 08:43 AM
  #17  
XR2
Senior Member
 
XR2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Back in the hills again
Posts: 998

Bikes: 88 Bridgestone T700

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked 2 Times in 1 Post
uhm.........errrrrrrrrr............I've never ridden anything other than downtube shifters. Thinking about barends for the Bridgstone.
XR2 is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 08:56 AM
  #18  
Starting over
Thread Starter
 
CraigB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 4,077

Bikes: 1990 Trek 1500; 2006 Gary Fisher Marlin; 2011 Cannondale Synapse Alloy 105; 2012 Catrike Trail

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by XR2
uhm.........errrrrrrrrr............I've never ridden anything other than downtube shifters. Thinking about barends for the Bridgstone.
Before I got my Fisher Marlin a few years ago, I hadn't used anything other than DT shifters, either. The convenience of the trigger and thumb shifters on that mountain bike are what made me start to dislike the DT shifters on my old road bikes. And one of those still had its original friction (non-indexed) shifters. Anyone remember those? How you had to develop a certain degree of touch or finesse to trim your shifts so they'd be quick and quiet? Those were the days.
CraigB is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 08:58 AM
  #19  
Banned.
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 732
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
i think if the bike fit you well and you liked it you should see about putting a deposit down or layaway. It would probably give you extra motivation to get over the top and lose those last 18lbs withoug you laying out too much money upfront. Perhaps you should just get the bike if it will motivate you to ride more and lose those last 18lbs.
cappuccino911 is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 09:10 AM
  #20  
Starting over
Thread Starter
 
CraigB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 4,077

Bikes: 1990 Trek 1500; 2006 Gary Fisher Marlin; 2011 Cannondale Synapse Alloy 105; 2012 Catrike Trail

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by cappuccino911
i think if the bike fit you well and you liked it you should see about putting a deposit down or layaway. It would probably give you extra motivation to get over the top and lose those last 18lbs withoug you laying out too much money upfront. Perhaps you should just get the bike if it will motivate you to ride more and lose those last 18lbs.
cappuccino911, you're real name isn't Steve, and you don't work at the shop I visited, do you? I'm kidding, of course, but your suggestion, particularly the last part of it, is almost word for word what the salesman said.
CraigB is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 09:37 AM
  #21  
Senior Member
 
cyclist2000's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Up
Posts: 4,695

Bikes: Masi, Giant TCR, Eisentraut (retired), Jamis Aurora Elite, Zullo, Cannondale, 84 & 93 Stumpjumpers, Waterford, Tern D8, Bianchi, Gunner Roadie, Serotta, Serotta Duette, was gifted a Diamond Back

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 305 Post(s)
Liked 2,038 Times in 604 Posts
Originally Posted by CraigB
Before I got my Fisher Marlin a few years ago, I hadn't used anything other than DT shifters, either. The convenience of the trigger and thumb shifters on that mountain bike are what made me start to dislike the DT shifters on my old road bikes. And one of those still had its original friction (non-indexed) shifters. Anyone remember those? How you had to develop a certain degree of touch or finesse to trim your shifts so they'd be quick and quiet? Those were the days.
Two of my older bikes have downtube friction shifters. I rode them last month for the first time this year. I think that they are pretty fun. I do have a set of friction shifters in my touring gear, incase problems develope with the brifters on tour.
cyclist2000 is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 11:34 AM
  #22  
XR2
Senior Member
 
XR2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Back in the hills again
Posts: 998

Bikes: 88 Bridgestone T700

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked 2 Times in 1 Post
Originally Posted by CraigB
Before I got my Fisher Marlin a few years ago, I hadn't used anything other than DT shifters, either. The convenience of the trigger and thumb shifters on that mountain bike are what made me start to dislike the DT shifters on my old road bikes. And one of those still had its original friction (non-indexed) shifters. Anyone remember those? How you had to develop a certain degree of touch or finesse to trim your shifts so they'd be quick and quiet? Those were the days.
Hehehe..................equipped with brand new DiaCompe Silver friction shifters by choice. It was missing the right side Suntour indexed when I bought it.

XR2 is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 11:51 AM
  #23  
Starting over
Thread Starter
 
CraigB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 4,077

Bikes: 1990 Trek 1500; 2006 Gary Fisher Marlin; 2011 Cannondale Synapse Alloy 105; 2012 Catrike Trail

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
^^ As cool as CF frames can look, to me there'll never be anything as beautiful as a well-sculpted set of lugs.
CraigB is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 01:26 PM
  #24  
XR2
Senior Member
 
XR2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Back in the hills again
Posts: 998

Bikes: 88 Bridgestone T700

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked 2 Times in 1 Post
Yeah there's just something elegant about a lugged steelie. Elemental cycling. It's got some battle scars but I can't quite make myself paint it yet. Maybe this winter,maybe not. It looks a lot better in that photo than up close.
XR2 is offline  
Old 09-22-10, 01:34 PM
  #25  
Pug
High Modulus
 
Pug's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Madison, NJ
Posts: 663

Bikes: Cervelo R3, Ridley X-Night

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Please excuse my stupid question: when you went for your test ride did you bring your bike shoes, or did you use regular street shoes?
Pug is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.