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Getting dropped on hills

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Road Cycling It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle. -- Ernest Hemingway

Getting dropped on hills

Old 05-06-21, 12:02 AM
  #51  
SoSmellyAir
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
1/4 inch tubing for both bikes, TBH I prefer the copper to the steel. Im not going to claim that these things are "safe" but they arent quite as dangerous as they look. In any case, I took them off for the group ride to be more sociable. It would take a horrific accident for them to hurt somebody but its still something I have to consider.
In a crash, they may get twisted around and impale you.
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Old 05-06-21, 12:10 AM
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Originally Posted by SoSmellyAir View Post
In a crash, they may get twisted around and impale you.
That can't happen, im more worried about the fringe case of a multi bike pileup where these could stab someone. Like I said, it would have to be a horrific accident for my aerobars to come into play. That fringe case is way more likely on a fast group ride though, hence me cutting the aerobars off
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Old 05-06-21, 06:11 AM
  #53  
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
My old hybrid has a basket, my racing hybrid is brand new. Here’s a pic of my bikes, aerobars removed for the group ride https://imgur.com/gallery/KvS2FjH
What are the bent tube-like extensions you have zip-tied to your stems? I'm just gonna come out and say it: the riders in this group/groups are probably wondering to themselves, "Who the heck is this Fred with the crazy commuter bike?" (EDIT: wrote this before I saw the explanation.)

What hasn't been asked yet is: do you intend to compete in road racing events in the future? Because generally, that's what these guys are training for, in many cases. If so, get the proper equipment for road racing. If not, perhaps a different group of more leisurely riders, not competition-level road riders, is in order. You can still ride hard, challenge yourself, and work the hills in such a group, and ride whatever bike you want.

As it stands now, these guys are most assuredly making fun of you behind your back. I'm not trying to be harsh, just honest.

In the road racing world, we sometimes, only half-jokingly, refer to "The Rules," as laid forth by the Velominati. Learn them, live them, love them.

Having said that, I am no longer one of those guys. I ride what I want, I dress how I want, and the arms of my eyewear are under the helmet straps. My road racing days are about three-and-a-half decades behind me. But my riding ability still speaks for itself. It's not uncommon for me to drop guys half my age, riding $6,000 carbon fiber wonder-bikes, on a 70s-era steel road bike, in the hills. These days I'm out to enjoy the ride with like-minded friends. More rando/touring style riding than road racing.

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Old 05-06-21, 08:10 AM
  #54  
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
Noon ride at page mill and old page mill.
If you want some fun big hill training on the SF Peninsula and have the time, consider the Hills R Us ride on Wednesday mornings. Typical routes have 4000 feet to 7000 feet of climbing.

It's a "social" ride, but there's always a few willing to push the pace. Several years ago, this was ride that transformed me from a guy who thinks he's a climber to a "climbing fool".

Here's the Hills R Us page.
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Old 05-06-21, 08:58 AM
  #55  
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
My old hybrid has a basket, my racing hybrid is brand new. Heres a pic of my bikes, aerobars removed for the group ride https://imgur.com/gallery/KvS2FjH
I'm impressed that you can make any kind of speed at all on those bikes. But for the tiny chance that your phrase wasn't deliberately ironic, "racing hybrid" is an oxymoron.

If speed is important to you, and from your posts, it seems so, then do yourself a favor and get yourself an actual road bike. Hybrids are not built for speed and their geometry alone is working against you. Why go to the trouble of "aerobars" on a hybrid, when its front end is up so high to begin with?
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Old 05-06-21, 09:05 AM
  #56  
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Originally Posted by johnnyace View Post
What are the bent tube-like extensions you have zip-tied to your stems? I'm just gonna come out and say it: the riders in this group/groups are probably wondering to themselves, "Who the heck is this Fred with the crazy commuter bike?" (EDIT: wrote this before I saw the explanation.)

What hasn't been asked yet is: do you intend to compete in road racing events in the future? Because generally, that's what these guys are training for, in many cases. If so, get the proper equipment for road racing. If not, perhaps a different group of more leisurely riders, not competition-level road riders, is in order. You can still ride hard, challenge yourself, and work the hills in such a group, and ride whatever bike you want.

As it stands now, these guys are most assuredly making fun of you behind your back. I'm not trying to be harsh, just honest.

In the road racing world, we sometimes, only half-jokingly, refer to "The Rules," as laid forth by the Velominati. Learn them, live them, love them.

Having said that, I am no longer one of those guys. I ride what I want, I dress how I want, and the arms of my eyewear are under the helmet straps. My road racing days are about three-and-a-half decades behind me. But my riding ability still speaks for itself. It's not uncommon for me to drop guys half my age, riding $6,000 carbon fiber wonder-bikes, on a 70s-era steel road bike, in the hills. These days I'm out to enjoy the ride with like-minded friends. More rando/touring style riding than road racing.
I am a fat alcoholic so Im under no delusion that I will race any time soon, but it would be nice to be nearly as strong as them. Im a commuter and I like being the fastest guy on my route, running into the noon ride really put a wrench in my gears and showed me just how fast the real guys are.

they can make fun of me all they want, Ill just get stronger and come back faster. Gonna spend some time going up a big daddy hill instead of chasing them in a futile effort.


also why are old guys so damn fast lol?? They chill down the hills but I swear once you hit like 65+ and have spent years on the saddle you level up or something. Love to see it. In your pic its sick that the portly Lycra dude was able to keep up with you two, I can tell just by looking that the you and the dude on the left are fast

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Old 05-06-21, 09:19 AM
  #57  
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
I'm impressed that you can make any kind of speed at all on those bikes. But for the tiny chance that your phrase wasn't deliberately ironic, "racing hybrid" is an oxymoron.

If speed is important to you, and from your posts, it seems so, then do yourself a favor and get yourself an actual road bike. Hybrids are not built for speed and their geometry alone is working against you. Why go to the trouble of "aerobars" on a hybrid, when its front end is up so high to begin with?
my local bike shop is building me a track bike, I plan on having a stupidly big gear on it, should be laser fast! Owner of the shop sees me out there riding all the time and thinks Im a nutcase, and strongly recommends a road bike lol.
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Old 05-06-21, 09:22 AM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
my local bike shop is building me a track bike, I plan on having a stupidly big gear on it, should be laser fast! Owner of the shop sees me out there riding all the time and thinks Im a nutcase, and strongly recommends a road bike lol.
Whatever floats your boat, but a big gear is not what makes you fast.

Goggle "spinning" and "mashing"
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Old 05-06-21, 09:36 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
my local bike shop is building me a track bike
Well that's great, but track bikes belong on the track. NOT on the road.

If you're serious about riding a track bike, take it to the Hellyer Velodrome in San Jose. They have beginner sessions on Saturdays.
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Old 05-06-21, 09:39 AM
  #60  
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
Whatever floats your boat, but a big gear is not what makes you fast.

Goggle "spinning" and "mashing"
Yeah high cadence is good, but if I don't have a massive gear ratio the other fixie and single speed riders will think im a clown. I didn't make these rules. TBH I wish I could put a smaller gear on it because I have some knee problems. Once I learn to spin it though, I should be fast
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Old 05-06-21, 09:41 AM
  #61  
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
Yeah high cadence is good, but if I don't have a massive gear ratio the other fixie and single speed riders will think im a clown. I didn't make these rules. TBH I wish I could put a smaller gear on it because I have some knee problems. Once I learn to spin it though, I should be fast
Look, we're trying to be constructive, but that makes no sense at all and is at best an argument for why you shouldn't be buying a single speed.
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Old 05-06-21, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse View Post
Well that's great, but track bikes belong on the track. NOT on the road.

If you're serious about riding a track bike, take it to the Hellyer Velodrome in San Jose. They have beginner sessions on Saturdays.
I'm a working class cyclist (used to deliver food) and track bikes definitely belong on the road, its part of the fashion. Seeing a commuter on a track bike is like seeing a guy with his full lycra kit on a carbon bike; you can assume they mean business and are out there to ride hard.
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Old 05-06-21, 09:49 AM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
Look, we're trying to be constructive, but that makes no sense at all and is at best an argument for why you shouldn't be buying a single speed.
I appreciate that and am not trying to be obstinate, the single speed will be a training tool and a learning experience in riding fixed gear. Ive heard riding fixed gear can make you a more attentive and better cyclist in general.
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Old 05-06-21, 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
track bikes definitely belong on the road, its part of the fashion.
There's an enormous difference between "guy who rides a bike on the road" and someone on a group ride.

Under no circumstances should a person ever show up to a group ride on a track bike. The other riders will shun you like the plague.
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Old 05-06-21, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse View Post
There's an enormous difference between "guy who rides a bike on the road" and someone on a group ride.

Under no circumstances should a person ever show up to a group ride on a track bike. The other riders will shun you like the plague.
woah, Is it dangerous? I thought people paceline in alleycats on track bikes all the time but thats kind of a separate thing.

The last thing I want is for people to think im dangerous
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Old 05-06-21, 10:03 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
woah, Is it dangerous? I thought people paceline in alleycats on track bikes all the time but thats kind of a seperate thing.

The last thing I want is for people to think im dangerous
Yes, the other riders will take one look at your track bike, conclude you are dangerous, and give you a wide berth.

Showing up to a fast group ride on a hybrid also sends a similar (but less blaring) signal.
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Old 05-06-21, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
my local bike shop is building me a track bike, I plan on having a stupidly big gear on it, should be laser fast! Owner of the shop sees me out there riding all the time and thinks Im a nutcase, and strongly recommends a road bike lol.
Based on the examples provided on this forum, I suspect bike shop Owner has made an accurate assessment.

Why are so many old guys so fast? Years and years of going fast. You can bet that all of them were probably even faster in years past. There's also the fact that they know WHEN to go hard, when to conserve, and how to go fast with minimal effort. You gassed yourself just getting to the front of the group, and then got dropped - that was a pretty pointless effort, and made you look pretty foolish.

"Racing hybrid"...
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Old 05-06-21, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
also why are old guys so damn fast lol?? They chill down the hills but I swear once you hit like 65+ and have spent years on the saddle you level up or something. Love to see it. In your pic it’s sick that the portly Lycra dude was able to keep up with you two, I can tell just by looking that the you and the dude on the left are fast
I'll be 55 this July, and I have been riding bikes since I was 5, so about 50 years under the belt. It's exactly that: we have spent years in the saddle, and many of us were former racers. And that "portly Lycra dude," as you put it, doesn't always keep up, but he rides regularly, is a great riding companion, and has no delusions about his riding ability. He just loves to ride.

I'm the dude on the left, gugie in the middle, and Andy_K on the right.
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Old 05-06-21, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse View Post
Yes, the other riders will take one look at your track bike, conclude you are dangerous, and give you a wide berth.

Showing up to a fast group ride on a hybrid also sends a similar (but less blaring) signal.
In my experience with high-level group rides, the tolerance level is pretty low for perceived dangerous riders, and repeat offenders are quickly asked to stay away from the group. Sometimes not very politely. However, demonstrate good ride etiquette, good pack skills, and leg-busting strength on a non-standard bike, and the attitude is quite different. Years ago, John Tomac would occasionally show up and put the hammer down in one of the fast group rides in my area - on his MTB. No one complained about anything but the suffering.
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Old 05-06-21, 10:19 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
woah, Is it dangerous? I thought people paceline in alleycats on track bikes all the time but thats kind of a separate thing.

The last thing I want is for people to think im dangerous
A rookie on a fixie in a fast roadie group is a recipe for someone getting hurt. Win a few National titles on the track, and people will start to be more accepting of your skills with a fixie out on the road.
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Old 05-06-21, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
I appreciate that and am not trying to be obstinate, the single speed will be a training tool and a learning experience in riding fixed gear. Ive heard riding fixed gear can make you a more attentive and better cyclist in general.
I'll give it one last go and then after that, you can do you however you like.

The learning experience you need is how to ride a road bike and how to ride in groups. Some people who already have significant experience in (road riding/MTB, etc.) can benefit from a fixed gear bike, but that's not where a beginner should start.

So if you're coming to BF for advice, the answer is, to repeat, ride a lot, lose some weight, get a road bike, and learn to ride in groups with a group that is at least close to you in ability.

If you don't like that advice, then it's your ice cream truck - drive it wherever you like.
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Old 05-06-21, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Eric F View Post
A rookie on a fixie in a fast roadie group is a recipe for someone getting hurt. Win a few National titles on the track, and people will start to be more accepting of your skills with a fixie out on the road.
...As long as you have two good brakes.
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Old 05-06-21, 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
woah, Is it dangerous? I thought people paceline in alleycats on track bikes all the time but thats kind of a separate thing.

The last thing I want is for people to think im dangerous
There are differences between a "track bike" and a fixed gear road bike. I have a friend who rides fixed gear bikes everywhere. He's done brevets and 500 mile races. He's done Paris-Brest-Paris twice on fixed gear bikes. These bikes are built with road geometry and brakes on both wheels. They would not be suitable for the velodrome.
It's said if you have the right gear climbing on a fixed gear is easier than a freewheel because of the gyro effect. This doesn't make them faster over a hilly course. When good fixed gear riders come on our longer club rides they are welcome but not usually in a paceline. The guy I mentioned above will follow the route but ride his own pace, usually slower than the fast group.
If you're going to ride a fixed gear bike in the hills you have to put a low enough gear for the steep sections or you'll end up walking or blowing up. It's a rare rider who can grind super low cadence for miles on end.
Then there are descents. You will spin out but you can't coast.
The turns are another challenge. Since you can't stop pedaling you can't lean into the outside pedal. Also, pedal strikes are a concern which is why fixed gear roadies sometimes use short crankarms. I think this has caused several crashes that I know about.
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Old 05-06-21, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Eric F View Post
In my experience with high-level group rides, the tolerance level is pretty low for perceived dangerous riders, and repeat offenders are quickly asked to stay away from the group. Sometimes not very politely. However, demonstrate good ride etiquette, good pack skills, and leg-busting strength on a non-standard bike, and the attitude is quite different. Years ago, John Tomac would occasionally show up and put the hammer down in one of the fast group rides in my area - on his MTB. No one complained about anything but the suffering.
I've seen many types of bikes on our Tuesday night fast group rides, but never a track bike. If someone rolled up to the parking lot on one, I would probably nicely tell him that he wasn't going to ride with us on that bike. Gloves are off after that if he insists and he'd probably end up in the ditch.
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Old 05-06-21, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by MoAlpha View Post
...As long as you have two good brakes.
Does this count?
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