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5 Mile commute.

Old 03-29-24, 11:04 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider
Agreed about RJ the Bike Guy. Very good instructions. Park Tool also has excellent videos.

If your derailleur makes noise, it's possible that your derailleur hanger is bent. They get bent even when you can't figure out how. The problem is that there is a probability of it getting bent *in*, but it's virtually impossible to bend it *out*. So over time, it seems that they all get bent in. The alignment tool is expensive, so it's worth it to have a shop do it. Unless RJ tells you how to make a tool. The tool shows you if your hanger is bent, and it allows you to bend it back into alignment.

It's great that you're not only handling your commute but also doing intervals now. I don't do them often, but they help a lot. They're just so darned annoying. Lately, I've been doing pushups and a few weight lifting exercises before I head out. It helps me on my ride. I don't understand how that works, but maybe someone knows.

Agreed about denim. Some people ride in it; I don't know how. I'll wear ANYTHING but denim.

You may be amused to know that I commute wearing a dress shirt and tie. I'm the only one on my route who wears a tie. I probably look weird. I guess I have to admit, I like being weird.
well, i hope it isnt bent. I really wish i had a shop close to me. The park tool video and tranacript is what i used as a guide for my adjustments. I am not fully confident that i am using the barrel adjuster properly LOL.
As for being a little weird, a think the world could all afford to take itself a little less seriously sometimes.
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Old 03-29-24, 11:33 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider
Agreed about denim. Some people ride in it; I don't know how. I'll wear ANYTHING but denim.
I think the bigger problem is the lap-felled (4 thickness) double-sewn seams, expecially in the crotch.

There's a great program on NHK Japan, haven't seen it in a while, Cycling Around Japan, usually hosted by some Japanese-fluent anglo; USA, Canada, UK, etc. One has lived in Japan many years, goes by "Bobby Judo", he's often seen riding a road-race bike good distance, like 30-40 miles, in tight skinny jeans, I immediately thought the same thing, WTF? Now, denim is a twill, 1-under, 2-over weave, which both gives it the diagonal pattern, but also provides a bit more stretch I think than a pure 1:1 weave. Judo's jeans I'm guessing are part spandex, doesn't take much.

BTW, the show frequents these small towns all over Japan, each highlighting a particular craft good; Heirloom quality vegetables, bean pastes, lacquered chopsticks, fishing villages, one show was in a farm area on steep slopes, the farmers were constantly raking the soil back uphill, wearing the rake to nubs; Buy a new rake? No, brought to local blacksmith who forges or welds on new tines and hammers to shape. Didn't say, but my guess is, no cheaper than buying a new rake, but it helps keep the blacksmith employed, both good for community, and to have around for more money-saving repairs.
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Old 03-30-24, 08:20 AM
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It is hard to adjust shift cables and derailleurs without a repair stand. Google diy repair stands for ideas or what many of us have done— suspend your bike from above with one rope to the seat post and one to the handlebars with the distance between the above attachment points longer than the bike. The you can fine tune without the on off adjust on off adjust …
And you can see exactly what’s going on back there.
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Old 03-30-24, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Duragrouch
I think the bigger problem is the lap-felled (4 thickness) double-sewn seams, expecially in the crotch.

There's a great program on NHK Japan, haven't seen it in a while, Cycling Around Japan, usually hosted by some Japanese-fluent anglo; USA, Canada, UK, etc. One has lived in Japan many years, goes by "Bobby Judo", he's often seen riding a road-race bike good distance, like 30-40 miles, in tight skinny jeans, I immediately thought the same thing, WTF? Now, denim is a twill, 1-under, 2-over weave, which both gives it the diagonal pattern, but also provides a bit more stretch I think than a pure 1:1 weave. Judo's jeans I'm guessing are part spandex, doesn't take much.

BTW, the show frequents these small towns all over Japan, each highlighting a particular craft good; Heirloom quality vegetables, bean pastes, lacquered chopsticks, fishing villages, one show was in a farm area on steep slopes, the farmers were constantly raking the soil back uphill, wearing the rake to nubs; Buy a new rake? No, brought to local blacksmith who forges or welds on new tines and hammers to shape. Didn't say, but my guess is, no cheaper than buying a new rake, but it helps keep the blacksmith employed, both good for community, and to have around for more money-saving repairs.
yeah, i wear 21oz tapered selvedge denim. It stretches about as much as a powerlifter does. 😆😆 i am going to check that program out thpugh, it sounds fun.
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Old 03-30-24, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Classtime
It is hard to adjust shift cables and derailleurs without a repair stand. Google diy repair stands for ideas or what many of us have done— suspend your bike from above with one rope to the seat post and one to the handlebars with the distance between the above attachment points longer than the bike. The you can fine tune without the on off adjust on off adjust …
And you can see exactly what’s going on back there.
ill try to rig something up..i may have to use a tree or 2 LOL. I had the bike upside down in my livingroom
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Old 03-30-24, 01:26 PM
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The ride GPS data from my ride into work. Tonight when i get home i will be at over 36 miles for the week.
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Old 03-30-24, 02:43 PM
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You're doing well! An average moving speed of 10 mph means you're an experienced bike commuter. Pretty good considering you have some hills.
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Old 03-30-24, 11:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Strawbunyan
ill try to rig something up..i may have to use a tree or 2 LOL. I had the bike upside down in my livingroom
If you have a garage or other work area, what used to be expensive bike or kayak lifts, are like $8 at harbor freight or maybe amazon. Pulleys screwed into ceiling joist, two hooks for handlebars and seat (careful, do not lift by seat platform, easily ripped off, hook around seat rails or a noose around seatpost below seat).

I am not allowed to do such in my rented room. I have a skinny table, sitting height, 5' long x 18" wide, against wall; My bike is stored on it upright, leaning against the wall, I'm short on floor space (and I tie a taut line (trucker's hitch) between front wheel and seat tube to keep wheel from cocking, and throw a cam buckle strap over the top tube to secure, in case of earthquake). To service bike, I invert the bike on same table. Because the aero bars are high in the center, I need to use a small but stiff open-top double-wall cardboard box, like from a flat of yellow mangos, to rest the inverted flat handlebar on, for stability.
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Old 03-31-24, 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Duragrouch
If you have a garage or other work area, what used to be expensive bike or kayak lifts, are like $8 at harbor freight or maybe amazon. Pulleys screwed into ceiling joist, two hooks for handlebars and seat (careful, do not lift by seat platform, easily ripped off, hook around seat rails or a noose around seatpost below seat).

I am not allowed to do such in my rented room. I have a skinny table, sitting height, 5' long x 18" wide, against wall; My bike is stored on it upright, leaning against the wall, I'm short on floor space (and I tie a taut line (trucker's hitch) between front wheel and seat tube to keep wheel from cocking, and throw a cam buckle strap over the top tube to secure, in case of earthquake). To service bike, I invert the bike on same table. Because the aero bars are high in the center, I need to use a small but stiff open-top double-wall cardboard box, like from a flat of yellow mangos, to rest the inverted flat handlebar on, for stability.
i actually have one of those lifts, i just dont have anywhere indoors to hang it as long as inverting the bike doesnt skew my results ill probably just keep doing it like that.
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Old 03-31-24, 09:09 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider
You're doing well! An average moving speed of 10 mph means you're an experienced bike commuter. Pretty good considering you have some hills.
I'm also impressed by the 29.5 mph!
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Old 03-31-24, 09:19 PM
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Getting a wonky rear derailleur dialed in is not easy. Lots of things can mess you up before you even start making adjustments - a bent hanger, a weak spring, worn pulleys, a bad shifter, bad cables/housings, a bent axle, frozen limit screws/barrel adjuster, or improperly adjusted cables.

If all of that is good, the actual adjusting part can be accomplished with a stand, a YouTube video, and a couple of simple hand tools.

Also worth noting that no derailleur shifting at all is still a rideable bike, and bad shifting is generally still better than no shifting. I had a derailleur once that I had to kick with my right heel like I was spurring a horse every time I wanted to get out of "first" gear. It still got me to work until I got around to replacing it.

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Old 03-31-24, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Strawbunyan
i actually have one of those lifts, i just dont have anywhere indoors to hang it as long as inverting the bike doesnt skew my results ill probably just keep doing it like that.
People have been working on bikes inverted, usually drive side facing you, for many decades without the benefit of a work stand. As long as you have decent chain tension, it should not affect your results, and you have complete freedom to run the crank. I also true my wheels that way. V-brakes, I service with the bike upright because the brakes and bosses face up in back, and forward and up in front. But even that way, I use the table, because it raises the bike to perfect standing work height. Handlebar work I do with the bike on the floor, leaned against the table.
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Old 03-31-24, 10:48 PM
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Originally Posted by ScottCommutes
I'm also impressed by the 29.5 mph!
I would love to take credit for that one but I owe it to the wicked bomber about a mile from my house...and that is me workin the breaks at the top.
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Old 04-01-24, 06:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Strawbunyan
I would love to take credit for that one but I owe it to the wicked bomber about a mile from my house...and that is me workin the breaks at the top.
I figured. Still, impressively high speed for a new commuter, at night, on a non-road bike.
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Old 04-02-24, 08:58 PM
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Originally Posted by ScottCommutes
I figured. Still, impressively high speed for a new commuter, at night, on a non-road bike.
I gotta get that adrenaline somewhere 😁😉
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Old 04-04-24, 06:25 AM
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Will we be seeing you in the How was your commute? thread?
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Old 04-06-24, 10:44 AM
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Originally Posted by noglider
Will we be seeing you in the How was your commute? thread?
as soon as the weathet straightens out around here and i get to riding again ill head over there thank you for all the help and support.
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Old 04-06-24, 10:55 AM
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I hear ya. Monday shouldn't have much rain, if any. I looked up Knoxville. Is that close? Check out the various ways bike commuters handle rain. If it's raining heavily in the morning, I don't ride, but the ride home is OK to risk. Also, I look at the amount of expected rainfall. Small amounts are not at all annoying. Moderate amounts are not too bad, either.
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Old 04-06-24, 01:27 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider
I hear ya. Monday shouldn't have much rain, if any. I looked up Knoxville. Is that close? Check out the various ways bike commuters handle rain. If it's raining heavily in the morning, I don't ride, but the ride home is OK to risk. Also, I look at the amount of expected rainfall. Small amounts are not at all annoying. Moderate amounts are not too bad, either.
i dont think im ready to go that hard yet i daily rode a motorcycle in FL for years and got soaked enough for a lifetime. Its sad but atleast for now I am going to be one of those guys...(a fair weather rider) hahahaha
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Old 04-06-24, 01:45 PM
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In time, you will learn your tolerance points. It's good you started out at this time of year so weather won't be much of a challenge for a while.

I've been riding a fair bit for many years. You can imagine I've ridden in some awful conditions that I would never recommend. But some conditions are really tolerable. And there are more times when I decided against it and regretted not riding than times that I rode and then regretted it. I mean, sometimes I get cold or wet, but there was at least something enjoyable about it. My commuting route is. mostly along a river path. The Hudson River is over a mile wide! It's a very welcome respite in a dense, loud, smelly city. Sometimes I'm on the path in the heavy rain, and yes, I'm wet, and I might be cold, but it keeps a lot of cyclists away, so I have it mostly to myself. That's a rare treat on this path, because it's very heavily used at other times. And the views are almost always inspiring. And on days when the cold is very painful, I can still feel triumphant that, HEY, I did it!

And one day, you'll be out there, and it will rain unexpectedly. And it might be OK or even nice. On hot summer days, it can be downright pleasant.
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Old 04-06-24, 10:09 PM
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I don't mind getting wet, and I wear raingear. I avoid biking in the rain because it trashes the drivetrain and the brakes with grit, and water can get in the hubs (poor seals), pedals (no seals at all), possibly bottom bracket (a certainty on old cup and cone bearings, perhaps not now on externals).
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Old 04-24-24, 04:55 PM
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A few people in this thread (and invetiably in every "what bike for me?" Thread) recommended buying an older bike because you get a good bike that will do the commute for a fraction of the cost..... sound advice and just figured i would show off that someone took the advice. If you spend time in the C&V section you will know, if not, you are finding out now.... my 1982 Austro Diamler SLE, built from the frame up, will be taking over for the MTB i bought as my "5 mile commute bike"

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Old 04-24-24, 05:07 PM
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Glad you're experimenting with different bikes. Best way to find out what works best is to just try out different bikes. The benefit with going a bit older, and you really don't even have to go that old to get bikes for cheap, is if you don't like it, you're not in for much money and you can sell it for about the same. It'll also help you figure out what you like aesthetically. Function is key but let's be real, we all (or most of us) want something that looks cool at the same time.
Enjoy the ride and let us know how the retro bike compares to the brand new mtb on the road.
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Old 04-24-24, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Pantah
Glad you're experimenting with different bikes. Best way to find out what works best is to just try out different bikes. The benefit with going a bit older, and you really don't even have to go that old to get bikes for cheap, is if you don't like it, you're not in for much money and you can sell it for about the same. It'll also help you figure out what you like aesthetically. Function is key but let's be real, we all (or most of us) want something that looks cool at the same time.
Enjoy the ride and let us know how the retro bike compares to the brand new mtb on the road.
The ride is a bit bumpier and uphil hurts worse but the ole AD feels like a rocketship compared to the MTB on the flats and it feels much more nimble in the front end..it doesnt hurt that this steel beast is a full 10 pounds lighter than the alpaka and the riding position is MUCH more how i like to sit...forward and down...drop bars are the way to go in my case, my wrists are much more comfortable in this position...flat bars feel unnatural to me in the hand and wrist and elbow zone.
plus...this bike just looks so much cooler😉 and has so much more soul...like riding art.
i will have to come up with an all new bag system again though.
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Old 04-24-24, 05:39 PM
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A-D: Nice classic bike. I see no triple crank, and also, is it me, or is the inner ring not a 42, but larger, closer to half-step gearing? Just curious. If you don't need the lows on the hills, especially if you climb while standing, great. Me, if a long hill, I need a bailout low to spin if I run out of gas climbing, I can't push hard while sitting, hurts my knees.

Glad you can do low drop bars. Me, even in my prime, too low for me, I went with bullhorn bars tilted up at about 30 degrees maybe, perfect height and hand position for me most of the time, and clip-on aeros for when I needed aero.

On my current flat-bar bike, I considered bullhorns, but realized that is a lot more narrow than I like now, so went with bar-ends on the flat bars, about 15 cm wider.

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