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Impact of Tire Quality on Ride Comfort

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Impact of Tire Quality on Ride Comfort

Old 09-03-21, 01:02 PM
  #51  
masi61
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Harold74 : one observation about your wife’s Norco - the saddle appears slightly tilted down. Is this the camera angle or her preferred position?

Can she ride no handed? If not she might be “white knuckling“ it a bit too much.

How confident of a rider is she BTW? I’ve noticed that skittish riders or riders who have yet to truly relax on their bikes get more carpal tunnel type hand pain. And the comment you made about her preference for the hoods supports this too. Also from the photo, it appears that the tops of the bars are actually higher than her saddle. You might think this would be more comfortable but I’m not so sure.

+1 to canklecat for the remarks about latex inner tubes and supple tires, particularly in the front.
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Old 09-03-21, 05:51 PM
  #52  
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Originally Posted by Craptacular8 View Post
I'm a big Rene Herse fan, and have them on quite a few bikes. That said, I might be one of the few that does not find the 28's overly plush....they are fast, they do better on wet pavement than the Vittoria's I have on another road bike, but for me are not as cushy feeling as the GP4000's in the same size on another road bike. I initially had the RH's mounted on this bike as I though it would be the bomb when combined with the future shock stem, and they worked well, aside from the flats I got using them on local highway shoulders, so switched to the GP4000's. For me, the 4000's feel smoother. I'm disappointed to hear at least a few here not finding the 5000's to be plush.

I put the RH 28's on another road bike I was building up, and I like them fine...I'll probably try to stuff the 32's on there when I wear them out though.

I love the 35's, and run the knobby 42's on my gravel bike, which I really enjoy.

To the OP, going up to 28's will be a help. I've significantly lowered the psi I ride even 25's on....I mostly air them up to 65'ish any more, and that works for me at 150. 28's a hair less at 60.
At what pressure were you running your 4000s/5000s? I actually loved my 5000s for the entire time I rode them, something like 7k miles. I was riding them at about ~100psi which is probably too high. But I was new to the world of nice tires and am slowly on the learning curve about how all of the aspects of the bike--including tires/tire pressure--affect ride quality. And at that time, I was riding a cheap steel frame that also likely played a big role in transmitting a lot of the road to me.
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Old 09-04-21, 01:35 AM
  #53  
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Originally Posted by tyrion View Post
Incorrect. A fatter tire rolls over softer ground much more efficiently, is less susceptible to cracks in the road, and has overall less rolling resistance at a given pressure.

The recent increase in tire size is hardly a "blind" process - people like Jan Heine have documented their experience and analysis of increasing tire size. Pro racers have increased the size of their tires over the years and they haven't done so "blindly".
No I am correct. You're incorrect. There's a reason the pro peloton isn't running 42mm tires, even on the cobbles.

And even if you were correct most people in modern society are riding on pretty decent pavement. This isn't 1920 when all tires were fat. There's no need for a 38mm tire on smooth roads, which I see all the time.

Last edited by Lazyass; 09-04-21 at 01:41 AM. Reason: Poor spelling because I'm old
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Old 09-04-21, 05:54 AM
  #54  
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I returned to 'serious' cycling this year after a couple decades of utility-only biking. Bought a cheap, old Cannondale 'sport' touring bike, to a great extent out of nostalgia as that was the last 'good' bike I had in the '90s. I didn't notice it back then, but this time I found the ride harsh and uncomfortable, particularly on my hands. Obviously I'm older, somewhat less flexible, etc, and now live where the roads are much worse than where I lived when I was younger. Decently padded gloves helped, as well as the usual tinkering with stem height, saddle position, etc, but by far the biggest improvements have come through tires. Moving from the cheap, stiff 32c tires that were on the bike to Gravelking SS 35c made a fair difference in comfort, but then going to 38c Rene Herse tires (the absolute max the bike can fit) transformed the bike. I know I'm talking outside your size range, but I think the quality & suppleness of the tires had at least as much to do with the improvement as the size. The Rene Herse's ain't cheap, and they were beyond a b**ch to get seated properly, but I love the way the bike rides with them and it's vastly improved hand/wrist (and overall) comfort.
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Old 09-04-21, 08:12 AM
  #55  
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Rough roads
My hands and shoulders get sore quite easily. (I'm in my upper 60s.) I ride two kinds of rough roads:

Buzzy chip-seal. This is more of an annoyance. My 28mm GP5000 at low pressures help a lot here.

Or jarring expansion joints, bad patchwork, and thick tar strips. Ow, these can be hard on hands and shoulders. Riding in the drops helps here: Leaning over a bit more, my core is helping support the weight, my arms are bent to help reduce shoulder soreness, and the pressure is spread evenly across my whole palm. The 28mm tires probably help, but they can't fully absorb shocks like this. (I rode some flexible 38mm tires at 40 psi on another bike. Those were very nice on choppy roads, and made chipseal buzz disappear.)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Bike fit
The bar, hood, and saddle positions on your bike photo wouldn't work for me. Way too much pressure on my hands from the saddle tilt. And bent wrists from the hood position. (Perhaps the camera angle exaggerates these angles, I suppose.)

Your bike:




Here's my bike setup. The bike and camera are both leveled, and the photo is shot at saddle height.
The green line is a horizontal reference.



Saddle:
I started years ago with the nose level. This works better, with the sit bone area level. No sliding forward. (I also see this a lot with leather Brooks saddle riders--nose up so the contact area is level.)

Bars:
A bit more than an inch drop to the top of the bars.
Hoods are angled up to even out the pressure across my palm and straight wrists. I have long fingers, so there's no problem with the reach to the brakes.
Drops are also angled to even out the pressure across my palm. The drops work great for me like this--I use them as just another comfortable hand position. In the old days, drops were only used for strong headwinds or control on fast downhills. Switching back and forth between hoods and drops is very good on longer rides.

I have to be careful not to ride pressing on the center of the base of my palm, which can aggravate soreness. This setup works well. And I tried lots of different padded gloves to find ones that have correct-for-me padding on the palms.

Saddle setup:
This fitter's video was very helpful. Saddles too far forward put too much weight on hands and shoulders.
It's an easy test to check saddle setup and position.
Saddle Fore Aft fit

Bar setup:
With bar tape off, I sit on the bike in a doorway for support.
First, the drops:
I start with the drops pointing approximately to the rear rim brakes.
I shake out my arms and hands to help get a neutral position, then reach for the drops. I want the whole palm to contact with minimal wrist bending. Adjust the bar angle a bit, and check again.
Once the drops angle is set, the hoods are adjusted similarly, trying for straight wrists and even hand contact.

Last edited by rm -rf; 09-04-21 at 08:25 AM.
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Old 09-04-21, 08:25 AM
  #56  
xroadcharlie
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When I bought my Giant Sedona comfort bike in 2018 I was convinced the 2" (50 mm) wide tires would give me a plush ride. Hardly. While the cheap Kenda "multi-surface" tires are a very good value, Comfort isn't one of their strengths. They are just OK in that respect.

I meet an old friend riding his vintage Raleigh 10 sp racer, We swapped bikes for a few minutes. I was pleasantly surprised how comfortable this bike was even with a narrow 25 mm tire. Honestly on some of the roads I ride it rides as well or better then the cheap tires twice their size. I'm pretty sure for big hits, even the cheaper wider tire might be better though.

So it looks to me like a good quality tire makes a big difference in comfort. Specifically a more supple tire. I think for road bikes a good quality 28mm or 32mm tire is the sweet spot for both comfort and speed on most roads we are likely to encounter. Giant uses 28mm tires on their $6,800 TCR Advanced Pro disc. They use 32mm tires on their $1,700 Contend AR2, Perfect for an everyday road bike.

Last edited by xroadcharlie; 09-04-21 at 08:59 AM.
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Old 09-04-21, 08:51 AM
  #57  
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Originally Posted by Lazyass View Post
No I am correct. You're incorrect. There's a reason the pro peloton isn't running 42mm tires, even on the cobbles.

And even if you were correct most people in modern society are riding on pretty decent pavement. This isn't 1920 when all tires were fat. There's no need for a 38mm tire on smooth roads, which I see all the time.
Frame clearance, aero, weight? Not necessarily rolling resistance - especially on the actual cobbled segments. Most of the roads the pros race on are in pretty good condition - certainly compared to the crappy local potholed, chip-sealed back-roads I usually ride. But I agree 38 mm is overkill for smooth roads. I'm finding 30-32 mm a good all-round compromise with no plans to ever go back to using anything narrower than a 28 mm even on the smoothest of roads.
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Old 09-04-21, 02:10 PM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by Lazyass View Post
No I am correct. You're incorrect. There's a reason the pro peloton isn't running 42mm tires, even on the cobbles.

And even if you were correct most people in modern society are riding on pretty decent pavement. This isn't 1920 when all tires were fat. There's no need for a 38mm tire on smooth roads, which I see all the time.
The reason the pro peloton is not riding 42s on the cobbles in the race you are likely thinking about is that 80% of that race is on pavement.
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Old 09-06-21, 12:45 PM
  #59  
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My experience

1) As others have said - wider allows lower pressure and a more comfortable ride.
2) If the frame won't allow wider tires, consider going tubeless. I run 700x28 at 60psi on a road bike. Kind of a hassle to set up, but the ride quality is high. On a gravel conversion, I mounted some Donnelly tubeless on standard cheap rims without problems.
3) If she has carpel tunnel, try double wrapping your bars, and of course gloves with Gell padding.
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Old 09-07-21, 08:30 PM
  #60  
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wrote a long response and bikeforums logged me out and dumped it. This has happened many many times.

So, my short response is that some tires are not as advertised. I mounted a new set of 28mm Vittoria Rubino Pro on a set of HED wheels to soften the ride. They measured 26mm fully inflated. When I got no improvement (and subjectively worse) in the ride, I switched the wheels back to my 25mm Michilin Pro2 Race, which also measured 26mm. Specsmanship, it sucks. Vittoria was able to post a lighter weight for their 28mm relative to vendors producing true 28mm.
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Old 09-08-21, 02:25 PM
  #61  
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Originally Posted by masi61 View Post
Harold74 : one observation about your wife’s Norco - the saddle appears slightly tilted down. Is this the camera angle or her preferred position?
It's the preferred position. I agree though, we'll experiment with the seat angle some more. The history on the way that it is now:

1) Before there were sore hand problems, there we sore bum problems.

2) Previously, we've ran a set of aero bars on the bike. The intent was not to be aero but, rather, to give my wife a position in which to rest her hands. I've come to see that strategy as a detrimental crutch. It's impossible to set up a bike to fit properly in both the aero and conventional road riding positions in my opinion. I think that part of the seat tilt was about allowing my wife to lean further forward to rest on the aerobars. I've watched my wife's use of the aero bars carefully. She only uses them on the flats and when there's no traffic around: cars, bikes, or pedestrians. On a typical MUP ride, this means that she'll spend about 5 min of a 60 minute ride on the aerobars.

Originally Posted by masi61 View Post
Can she ride no handed? If not she might be “white knuckling“ it a bit too much.
We haven't tested that yet but it is something that I've been thinking about and will likely be the subject of a separate thread. Seems to me that, the more forcefully one pedals, the more "weightless" their upper body becomes.

Originally Posted by masi61 View Post
How confident of a rider is she BTW? .
Not very.

Originally Posted by masi61 View Post
Also from the photo, it appears that the tops of the bars are actually higher than her saddle. You might think this would be more comfortable but I’m not so sure.
Can you elaborate upon that statement at all? Most folks seem to roll the other way and suggest that a more upright position is best for taking the weight off of the hands. I'm also in the expensive process of possibly swapping out the 6 deg suspension stem for a 30 deg suspension stem. Your comments will help to guide my decision making.
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Old 09-08-21, 02:45 PM
  #62  
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Originally Posted by rm -rf View Post
And bent wrists from the hood position. (Perhaps the camera angle exaggerates these angles, I suppose.)
No, you are quite right about that. The story:

1) I recently installed that suspension stem and gave my wife the opportunity to put the handle bars where she thought her hand comfort would be optimized.

2) Counter to my expectation, she turned the handlebar down rather than up.

One issue that I face is that my wife is a busy body and never wants to spend the time to work on the bike fit with me. I've acquired a stationary trainer that I plan to use for this purpose soon.

Thanks for taking the time to share your experiences, there was a lot of great stuff in your post.
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Old 09-08-21, 02:46 PM
  #63  
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Originally Posted by sunburst View Post
wrote a long response and bikeforums logged me out and dumped it. This has happened many many times.

So, my short response is that some tires are not as advertised. I mounted a new set of 28mm Vittoria Rubino Pro on a set of HED wheels to soften the ride. They measured 26mm fully inflated. When I got no improvement (and subjectively worse) in the ride, I switched the wheels back to my 25mm Michilin Pro2 Race, which also measured 26mm. Specsmanship, it sucks. Vittoria was able to post a lighter weight for their 28mm relative to vendors producing true 28mm.
That is a bit unfortunate in that I just purchased some Rubino 28's....
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Old 09-08-21, 07:54 PM
  #64  
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Originally Posted by Harold74 View Post
That is a bit unfortunate in that I just purchased some Rubino 28's....
I should add that someone on biketiresdirect gave the Rubino's a good review saying they were softer than the Michelin Pro4 Endurance, which I also own. I didn't do an apples-to-apples comparison because they were on different generations of HED wheels. And I couldn't get those %!#&@ Endurance tires off! I have warmed up to the Rubinos however. And am going to mount them on a better bike I just built. They look good (tan sidewalls) and a good price.


I also mounted some 28mm Rene Herse (who supposedly is a champion of wide tires) on a customer's Mavic CXP-22 rims, and they measured 26mm, disappointing. And the customer specifically bought those Herse tires to get the width. Now this is a direct comparison - my 25mm Michelins Pro2 were previously mounted on Mavic CXP-22 rims and they measured 26mm.

Note: All three wheels I've mentioned have different internal rim widths. That's why I'm specifying the wheel when I give the tire width.
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Old 09-08-21, 08:25 PM
  #65  
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Originally Posted by sunburst View Post
So, my short response is that some tires are not as advertised. I mounted a new set of 28mm Vittoria Rubino Pro on a set of HED wheels to soften the ride. They measured 26mm fully inflated. When I got no improvement (and subjectively worse) in the ride, I switched the wheels back to my 25mm Michilin Pro2 Race, which also measured 26mm. Specsmanship, it sucks. Vittoria was able to post a lighter weight for their 28mm relative to vendors producing true 28mm.
​​
Originally Posted by sunburst View Post
I also mounted some 28mm Rene Herse (who supposedly is a champion of wide tires) on a customer's Mavic CXP-22 rims, and they measured 26mm, disappointing. And the customer specifically bought those Herse tires to get the width. Now this is a direct comparison - my 25mm Michelins Pro2 were previously mounted on Mavic CXP-22 rims and they measured 26mm.
CXP-22 is only 15mm internal, which is extremely narrow by current standards: most tire manufacturers today are labeling nominal width assuming a wider rim than that. The Rene Herse website claims that the 28mm Chinook Pass measures 28mm on 20mm-internal rims, for example. The Michelin Pro2 appears to be the outlier here, which may be because it's a fairly old tire that was in production when narrower rims were in vogue.
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Old 09-08-21, 11:18 PM
  #66  
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Originally Posted by Harold74 View Post
It's the preferred position. I agree though, we'll experiment with the seat angle some more. The history on the way that it is now:
1) Before there were sore hand problems, there we sore bum problems.
2) Previously, we've ran a set of aero bars on the bike. The intent was not to be aero but, rather, to give my wife a position in which to rest her hands. I've come to see that strategy as a detrimental crutch. It's impossible to set up a bike to fit properly in both the aero and conventional road riding positions in my opinion. I think that part of the seat tilt was about allowing my wife to lean further forward to rest on the aerobars. I've watched my wife's use of the aero bars carefully. She only uses them on the flats and when there's no traffic around: cars, bikes, or pedestrians. On a typical MUP ride, this means that she'll spend about 5 min of a 60 minute ride on the aerobars.

We haven't tested that yet but it is something that I've been thinking about and will likely be the subject of a separate thread. Seems to me that, the more forcefully one pedals, the more "weightless" their upper body becomes.

Can you elaborate upon that statement at all? Most folks seem to roll the other way and suggest that a more upright position is best for taking the weight off of the hands. I'm also in the expensive process of possibly swapping out the 6 deg suspension stem for a 30 deg suspension stem. Your comments will help to guide my decision making.
Hi Harold, Maybe some of my suggestions might be found helpful...

so, quickly on tires - generally better tires are more supple, some more than others, better tires also will have better rubber and BTW, will usually give substantial more mileage for the life of the tire - partially mitigating the additional cost. Can't tell you much about model and brand, because I only have 28's on a shopping/errands bike with 26" inch wheels...
BAck to other important consideraton.
Ride/Bike considerations
'Position' is determined to provide a balance of 'power, efficiency, comfort and possible injury avoidance'.
What ultimately happens when the body meets the bike is 'posture' related to that 'position' (all in relation to the cycling on whatever road/conditions/terrain encountered).
So Rider 'Posture' is key for comfort and injury avoidance. What one wants is a 'posture' which allows inevitable road shock to be mitigated thru 'absorption' and 'dissipation'.
Road shock comes thru primarily thru 2 areas, the bars and the seat (pedals and legs are giant shock absorbers...)
My comments are also based on what your bike image shows...
The seat - a very slight tilt to seat is usually manageable, but your(her) seat is angled enough/so much that she may be positioned to slide forward,, to counter that, riders will create a stiff, supportive triangle... - lock the elbows, shoulders high and braced, stiff straight back. What then happens is the wrists are severly bent down, with wrist joint BELOW the palm level.
The shocks go into the wrists, thru the locked arms to the shoulders and neck.
I would suggest gradually bringing the seat angle back towards horizontal, in small increments, over rides/time.
If you/she haven't yet done this, get 'measured' for seat width. Specialized (and most SPec dealers) will have the 'Ass-o-meter', which measures sitzbone width, from which one has a better chance of finding a supportive saddle.... just sayin...
Back to posture - and shocks come thru the bars.
Key is to allows the hands,arms, shoulders, neck and back to 'absorb' and 'dissipate' whatever shock comes thru. Which means flexible posture.
Posture is actually the hardest thing for many riders to optimize. Because, it seems easier to 'brace', rather than to 'absorb'... But bracing quickly produces pain and possible injury. Absorption mitigates that.
So, to best absorb and mitigate shocks, don't lock the elbows, bend the elbows slightly, as much as one can. Drop/pull the shoulders down, don;t allow the shoulders to brace up and in towards the neck. Roll the elbows inwards towards the torso, NOT elbows outward !!! Don;t allow the wrists to drop below a horizontal plane with the palms - this eliminates shocks concentrating in the wrist joint.
Never let the bars rest down the middle valley of the hand/palm (carpal Tunnel syndrome). Always works to having bar pressure spread at the fleshy area below the thumb and the fleshy area at the outside of the hand.
If one rides with the hands on the bar top - inward from the bend - the grip should be light and with elbows rolled inward towards torso - NOT elbows out and heavily braced at the shoulders.
There's no reason why you can't inch those Brifters up and back on the bend, just a bit - it might affect a better reach. more comfortable grip to the hoods, and allow a more supple hand/arm/shoulder posture - only a bit...
Here are 2 pics, one of good posture and one of poor posture....

Good road cycling posture
and poor posture...

poor road cycling posture
Hope this helps a bit...
Thx
Yuri

Last edited by cyclezen; 09-08-21 at 11:24 PM.
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Old 09-09-21, 05:13 AM
  #67  
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Originally Posted by HTupolev View Post
​​
CXP-22 is only 15mm internal, which is extremely narrow by current standards: most tire manufacturers today are labeling nominal width assuming a wider rim than that. The Rene Herse website claims that the 28mm Chinook Pass measures 28mm on 20mm-internal rims, for example. .
This^^^
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Old 09-09-21, 01:11 PM
  #68  
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Vittoria Rubino Pro

Originally Posted by sunburst View Post
wrote a long response and bikeforums logged me out and dumped it. This has happened many many times.

So, my short response is that some tires are not as advertised. I mounted a new set of 28mm Vittoria Rubino Pro on a set of HED wheels to soften the ride. They measured 26mm fully inflated. When I got no improvement (and subjectively worse) in the ride, I switched the wheels back to my 25mm Michilin Pro2 Race, which also measured 26mm. Specsmanship, it sucks. Vittoria was able to post a lighter weight for their 28mm relative to vendors producing true 28mm.

Have one set of those tires (in a 25) on my one and only road bike that tops out at 25's (maybe the odd slightly larger tire would fit). They measure 26 on the Easton rims. They are light...ride is OK. Don't like them on wet pavement at all, and the flat protection is worse that the gp4000's, but maybe a hair better than the RH...regardless, I've flatted the latter 2 plenty.
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Old 09-09-21, 01:16 PM
  #69  
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Gp4000 psi

Originally Posted by kfried View Post
At what pressure were you running your 4000s/5000s? I actually loved my 5000s for the entire time I rode them, something like 7k miles. I was riding them at about ~100psi which is probably too high. But I was new to the world of nice tires and am slowly on the learning curve about how all of the aspects of the bike--including tires/tire pressure--affect ride quality. And at that time, I was riding a cheap steel frame that also likely played a big role in transmitting a lot of the road to me.
Can't speak for the riders of the 5000's, but I run my 4000's at 60 psi. Love them.
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Old 09-09-21, 01:51 PM
  #70  
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I also have issues with wrists. What worked best for me was changing to carbon stem and handlebar. I also put silicon gel pad under bar tape.

Good luck
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Old 09-11-21, 09:27 AM
  #71  
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Originally Posted by Harold74 View Post
It's the preferred position. I agree though, we'll experiment with the seat angle some more. The history on the way that it is now:

1) Before there were sore hand problems, there we sore bum problems.

2) Previously, we've ran a set of aero bars on the bike. The intent was not to be aero but, rather, to give my wife a position in which to rest her hands. I've come to see that strategy as a detrimental crutch. It's impossible to set up a bike to fit properly in both the aero and conventional road riding positions in my opinion. I think that part of the seat tilt was about allowing my wife to lean further forward to rest on the aerobars. I've watched my wife's use of the aero bars carefully. She only uses them on the flats and when there's no traffic around: cars, bikes, or pedestrians. On a typical MUP ride, this means that she'll spend about 5 min of a 60 minute ride on the aerobars.



We haven't tested that yet but it is something that I've been thinking about and will likely be the subject of a separate thread. Seems to me that, the more forcefully one pedals, the more "weightless" their upper body becomes.



Not very.



Can you elaborate upon that statement at all? Most folks seem to roll the other way and suggest that a more upright position is best for taking the weight off of the hands. I'm also in the expensive process of possibly swapping out the 6 deg suspension stem for a 30 deg suspension stem. Your comments will help to guide my decision making.
Looking at that Norco photo showing the stem/handlebar set-up, it looks good. The tilted down saddle not so much. But it was worth a try with the aero bar setup.

I said that the handlebar tops being higher than the saddle may not increase rider comfort, yes. I told my girlfriend about this thread and she has the same sore hand issues on her road bike. She doesn’t like that I encourage her to try the drops for short intervals. He new Guerciotti cyclocross disc road bike is an extra small. She has like 90mm of spacers under her stem and wants more because even with good gloves and getting carpal tunnel surgery on both wrists she still has to shake out her hands a lot. My main concern about the too high stem is front end stability.

With that nifty suspension stem on the Norco, I suppose it is worth a try to get the same stem but in a higher upward rise. I’m just an ordinary 59 year old road rider myself. I’m 5’11” and enjoy riding bikes on the small size and using longer stems to get the correct extension my smallest bike has a 13cm stem with a slight upward rise.

I’m just sort of rambling about bike fit and wanted to respond to your query about why I thought a higher stem might not be that great. I’ll follow this thread since how she resolves the issue of the hand pain is something that my GF would like to know about.
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Old 09-28-21, 11:09 AM
  #72  
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Originally Posted by cyclezen View Post
Hi Harold, Maybe some of my suggestions might be found helpful...
I just wanted to take the time to acknowledge that, with respect to your post:

1) It was enormously helpful to me. I'm very much coming around to the principles that you've espoused regarding cycling posture.

2) A post as detailed as yours implies real effort. I'm grateful that you took the time to do that for me/us.

You'll see your ideas reflected in my subsequent posts. Imitation is flattery, right? I hope so.
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Old 09-28-21, 11:23 AM
  #73  
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So I've been doing some research and testing (on myself) on this and I believe that I have a working theory of how to improve hand comfort for folks like my wife. I acknowledge that some of it runs counter to a lot of the reputable advice that you find out in the cybersphere.

Principle #1: dampening vibration is great but, to really help CTS folks, you need to get the weight off of the hands, not just dampen the vibration.

Principle #2. the key to getting the weight off of your hands, on a road bike at least, lies in adopting a posture that creates a near-weightless riding condition at the handle bars. Per the sketches shown below, I feel that there are two ways to accomplish this:

2a) Put some real force into the pedals. Not mashing, but forceful riding. I've noticed that it's harder for me to get weightless when I'm riding casually. This makes sense to me from an 8th grade physics perspective.

2b) Get low. As shown below, getting low winds up the spring that allows your body to cantilever from the saddle rather than span from saddle to bars. Again, this matches my experience on my own bike.

3) Based on the above, I do question whether it is universally advisable to raise the bars to help with CTS and hand comfort. It seems to me that doing so would yield one of two results:

3a) If you're riding weighted, then you shift your center of gravity back and lessen the weight on your hands. I see this as pretty much worthless for road bikes unless you raise the bar A LOT, which leads into the answer being an entirely different kind of bike. Raising the bars modestly simply does not shift the rider's center of gravity enough to make a real difference. Also, if feel that shortening reach is likely to be more effective at shifting the center of gravity than is increasing stack.

3b) If you're riding weightless, raising the bars unwinds the all important spring shown in the sketch below which diminishes the rider's ability to cantilever from the saddle.

I'm interested in hearing everyone's opinions about these ideas, particularly the dissenting opinions.


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Old 09-28-21, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by masi61 View Post
I’ll follow this thread since how she resolves the issue of the hand pain is something that my GF would like to know about.
I've been testing out a promising hand position that I'd sort of forgotten about: the hooks. Perhaps it might bring some measure of relief to your partner.
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Old 09-28-21, 05:16 PM
  #75  
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Originally Posted by Harold74 View Post

2b) Get low. As shown below, getting low winds up the spring that allows your body to cantilever from the saddle rather than span from saddle to bars. Again, this matches my experience on my own bike.
My comment is that I totally avoid this approach and have great success. I agree that it can work (for at least some of us) to minimize bearing weight on the hands, but I keep the bars roughly saddle height, bend my elbows and wear my core muscles out supporting the cantilevered weight. Getting low just makes that unbearable and more exhausting and bending the spine like that is not what my body wants to do for comfortable riding.

Of course, any time I’m pushing hard enough that I have to pull with my fingers means I’m not bearing weight and when I do bear weight I keep the bearing surface more on my thumbs and off the middle of the palms as much as possible. Plus, I ride out of the saddle a significant fraction of most rides.

YMMV.

Otto
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