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  1. #251
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    Re: Advice thread - Post your top 10 tips

    Read the full thread, didn't see (or missed it ) I plan my rides according to the wind. I'll ride into the wind for the first half of the ride. This way the ride home is with the wind at my back.

    Yeah, a few times the wind changed and had to ride into it both ways

  2. #252
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaspi101 View Post
    Scratch that---Just did one this weekend and temp hit 98 degrees...ice water, ice water, baby...
    Ive always been told that ice water is a no no because it aids in cramping.

  3. #253
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    Re: Advice thread - Post your top 10 tips

    Quote Originally Posted by chudson0616 View Post
    Ive always been told that ice water is a no no because it aids in cramping.
    That's ture. Cool water is OK.

  4. #254
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    I'm new to riding, so I only have one:

    -When using a C02 inflator, DO NOT HOLD ANYTHING WITH YOUR BARE HANDS! Use your punctured tube to hold it.


    I was rushing home in the cold, dark, and rain to tend to my dog and hit something and got a flat in the ghetto. Great. Having never used a C02 before, I held the adapter, hard, against the valve. The result is a frost bitten index finger...live and learn.

  5. #255
    Poseur
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    If you transport your bike on a roof rack and you park your car in a garage, before backing out of the driveway put something in front of the garage door (like a bucket or garbage can or a traffic cone or something) to remind yourself to stop and get the bike off the rack before trying to pull in. That's a lesson you don't want to learn the hard way.
    Speed solves all problems, except for those things it makes worse.

  6. #256
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    Almost done updating an old Peugeot and get back into roading after years away...still a noob myself I guess, but...

    After years on MTB, I think these always hold true:
    1. Wear gloves : Not much worse than having to ride home with road rash palms against the bars

    2. Wear some kind of glasses : Protect your eyes...you never know what can get kicked up in your direction. Cycle glasses with multiple inserts are great, but good sunglasses are essential. Wear something at night too..clear...yes there are some "safety" glasses that are pretty modern and don't look like you just walked out of chem lab.

    3. DO NOT give in to the innocent thought of "testing" your new clipless pedals by snapping in the cleat before you install on the bike. Trust me. They are VERY hard to get apart. Can't say much more NOOB than having to walk into the LBS and ask for help getting them apart...luckily I did not get that far ;) They will work after mounted. Your leg strength and the lever of the shoe will see to that. Trust they'll do what they're supposed to do...

    Can't wait for my last parts and get out and see how it rides

  7. #257
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    Hi
    I'm just about to get my first road bike and narrowed it down to 2...ok maybe 3! They are a Cannondale Caad 8, Giant Defy 3, Scott Speedster 40 and now ive gone and seen the Ribble bikes on their website! Does anybody know about Ribble? Seems like a lot of bike for the money! Thanks James Ribble Gran Fondo at Ribble Cycles

  8. #258
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    Awesome tips, coming from a very beginner that has like 2 rides total so far =) Thx!
    Ghis

  9. #259
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    Thx everyone for all the tips! Its so nice to see experienced people sharing their knowledge and making us "the noobs" safer!
    Ghis

  10. #260
    We have met the enemy...
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    Great thread and lots of tips for everyone--new riders and old.

    I just have one set of connected thoughts to add. Your road bike has funny bars for a reason--they are designed to be used in different ways:

    1. Your hands can be (a) on the tops; (b) on the (brake) hoods; (c) in the drops or on the hooks--below the hoods. In any position (as mentioned) don't use a death grip and stay relaxed.

    2. Move your hands around the bars to avoid numbness or discomfort--don't ride thirty miles with your hands in one position.

    3. The places where your hands can be put serve different purposes--time and experience will teach you what works for you, but a rough guide is:
    (a) on the tops when relaxing, reconnoitering, or if you need to take one had off to get water etc.;
    (b) on the hoods--for climbing, general riding or situations where you need quick brake access;
    (c) on the drops--descents, fast riding, and into headwinds.

    4. I usually ride with my hands on the hoods--and move my hands up onto the outside corners of the tops when climbing (elbows slightly out)--this is preference. Other riders will climb with their hands on the hoods. Few riders will try to climb with their hands on the drops...

    Practice moving your hand positions around and feel the benefits and drawbacks of the various positions, and develop your own personal preferences.
    Last edited by paredown; 07-30-2013 at 04:22 AM.
    "There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs."
    John Rogers

  11. #261
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    Great tips! My contributions:

    • Don't have to have expensive eye protection. These safety glasses (example and example) will work also.
    • Get a small air compressor that automatically shuts off at designated psi's. This allowed me to pump tires before each ride and dawn bike gear while its running. If the compressor is a "schrader only" fitment like most small compressors, cut off the chuck and buy this universal kit. (or similar) Just make sure the compressor you purchased can handle your max psi. I use a small cheap 12volt + electrical Costco version.
    • For Weight weenies, lose the presta valve nuts and caps.
    • If privacy is a concern to you when starting/ending routes with your GPS devices.. do so no where near your homestead. This is for those who upload their activities to sites such as Garmin, Strava, MapMyRide etc...
    • Out on rides never get complacent.

  12. #262
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    Re: Advice thread - Post your top 10 tips

    Amateur cyclist here:
    1. Took me 5 years to realize this. Never ride by looking at the speedometer for speed. Just let your heart rate guide you. No HR monitor needed.
    2. 2 chambers and a pump will save you someday.
    3. Always wear a helmet.

  13. #263
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    A good time to buy a bike is at the end of the season, when the shops are getting rid of old inventory and making room for winter sport equipment. Of course it means one has to deal with the cold, or not ride at all.

    As far as riding in cold weather, I have stuffed a plastic bag under my helmet to cut the wind. It is cheap, can't be seen and makes the cold a little more bearable. I have a skull cap too, but some days the wind is too much for the skull cap alone.

    Also, one of my wrecks I happened when I was zipping downhill with bright sunlight on my face, and I couldn't see a fallen branch on the pavement that was hidden in the relative darkness of shadow from a tree. I flew over the handlebars, and hit the pavement. My eyes couldn't adjust quickly enough going from full sun to full shade, and I didn't know I hit anything until it was too late.

    Edited to add one more thing concerning cycling: It is not the bike, it is the rider.
    Last edited by Ullr; 10-30-2013 at 08:49 AM.

  14. #264
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    This place is fantastic !
    As a newbie, I can use all the help that I can get.
    Thanks to all of you old-timers for taking the time to offer help
    to those of us who are just starting out. Much appreciated.

  15. #265
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    Re: Advice thread - Post your top 10 tips

    Quote Originally Posted by ijuf View Post
    All very good advice...

    If you're a beginner to road biking, get used to clipless pedals sooner than later. The more you delay learning how to use them, the more you will be scared of them.
    +1. I jumped right into the deep end and got clipless pedals the day I got my roadie. First few rides were terrifying (especially when coming to four way stops) and almost flopped on my side more than once, but I got used to them in a week. Now, I can't see riding without them...just put a set of SPDs on my hybrid, too.

  16. #266
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    My personal experience from a total noob to road bike vet:

    WHEELS: If you want to have the bling of carbon wheels, get one with an aluminum braking surface. Stronger braking = safer riding

    BIKE FIT: No matter what the fitter tells you, the best indicator of a good bike fit is the absence of body pain (knees, elbows, etc) during riding.

    COMPONENTS:
    1)Once you try electronic groupsets (Di2, EPS) you're never going back to mechanical
    2) Shimano: Affordable, reliable. Campy: Expensive, Sexy. SRAM: no comment

    CLIMBING STEEP ASCENTS: Climbing is painful. Climbing is fun

    FLATS: Practice changing tires for flats before they happen. Do so on the wheels you use most often.

    BIB CHAMOIS CREME: Use it, your nether regions will thank you for it.

  17. #267
    2014 Cannondale SS EVO
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    This is simply the issue with today's LBS. They want to have customers and be "busy", but make sure we all walk on egg shells, mind our manners, don't make eye contact until the right time...get over yourself.

    I spend MY money at an LBS and they should appreciate that...its that simple. I did EXACTLY as you advised and here is what happened:

    I ordered a $3,250 14 Super Six EVO Ultegra in November of 2013. I also upgraded the cockpit, bought a gps and a jersey. I then mentioned I wanted lighter/stronger/better wheelset. I was going to order online (because I didn't want to spend $800 plus tax on a Mavic Ksyrium Elite's). They offered a "trade in" of the curent wheels and I purchased the Ksyrium's for an additonal $500. With year end discount the total came out to be around $3,800.

    While making payments all Winter I stopped in every two weeks. I never "bothered" them when a customer was in the store. i fact, I once waited 30 minutes to make a payment !!!! The payment only takes 0ne minute..they know that and know why I come in every two weeks. I brought other little things while I was there. I hung out a bit and had many friendly talks. When I picked up the bike in March I got both employees dunkin donuts gift cards (for what reason..I have no idea. I bought a freakin bike and paid $3,800). This is what I got:

    One mechanic told me to schedule a "bike fit". There were two available. One was free and basic (seat height, stem/handlebar angle, knee measurement). the other cost $80 and had all this information for me at the end. I told him lets do basic and if I felt uncomfortable on the bike I would come back for $80 fit. He told me EXACTLY what to expect.

    I roll in the day to get fitted and pick up bike. The OTHER employee (and obvious jerk) had me stand up against the counter and pedal. he eye balled my fit.

    I was stunned and actually shaken. I called another local LBS and they were also shocked. They told me to come right down. He did a fit which took about 45 minutes. Adjusted my seat, cleats, handlebar angle and made sure I felt right. He charged me $30 and I did not even buy the bike there. Never spent a dime, never had nice conversation, never not made eye contact, never anything. He has the right attitude simply because he does. It had NOTHING to do with mine and it shouldn't.

    Every job has its stresses and an LBS is not special and should be treated as if it is. Sorry, but I will never, ever buy anything from that shop again and have not in a year. how hard is it to acknowledge someone and say "I'll be right with you". 99% of people realize there is a first come, first serve. There is no need to IGNORE anyone because they are "busy".

    For all the newbies...this type of LBS is the last place you would want to spend your money and not all have this attitude towards us.


    Quote Originally Posted by uber-stupid View Post
    Having worked in an LBS (as well as a woodworking supply store) I know that there is such a thing as good service, and bad service. And while I don't want to make excuses for bad service, workplaces all have their stresses, and I feel compelled to point out the following things:

    -Just because you've just read everything in these forums, doesn't mean you're more knowledgeable than the guy behind the counter, or standing at the bike stand. These guys get paid... well, almost enough... for their services, and they deal with seriously fussy people all day long. And for many people, it's enough to deal with their job at work, they don't come home and geek out. Some of them do, and it's great, but not all of them. The forums, on the other hand, are populated with everyone from 16 year old punks to middle aged mechanical engineers, and there's a lot of information here. It's a highly specialized information resource, populated with people who are addicted to information. But that doesn't make the guy who fixes flats and brakes all day long is an ignorant idiot. Just because you have some miraculous bit of hyper-specialized information does NOT make you better or smarter than they are. It just means you've read something that they haven't.

    -It's hard to explain to people who are on the other side of the counter sometimes, but the truth is that some of the most difficult customers are the ones who are really convinced that they know more than the LBS guys. There's nothing more dangerous than having a little information. Maybe you have a detail, or a piece of information that they don't, but other times you'll have a problem that is everyday for them, that they can handle with their eyes closed, that you've never seen or really had to think about.

    I watched one bicycle owner rip a mechanic a new one because the bike wasn't working properly, and he was convinced that it was the shop's fault. Turns out he'd turned the barrel adjusters the wrong way on a ride, and when it didn't work, he kept turning them that wrong way, making things worse. A bicycle is a remarkably simple machine. And so is basic human error. There's nothing wrong with making a stupid mistake. There's a lot wrong with treating people like dirt over your own mistakes. If something isn't working, accept it, go in, and see if they can explain why. Don't go in with a bike in one hand, and blame in the other.


    -The eye-contact thing works on the road, not in the store. Trust me, they saw you. On a busy Saturday afternoon in June, they're probably trying to avoid eye contact. If it's too busy, and you have a real question, come back when they have time. At that particular moment, they are probably already trying to service a high strung high spender, a wild eyed mother of 2, who are both there and need flat tires fixed, some random cranky guy who doesn't understand the two different sides of his bicycle pump nozzle, and 3 detailed phone calls.

    And while it sounds really impersonal to say so, they already have steam coming out of their ears, and the last thing that they probably want is one more person to bother them.

    I'll add the caveat that sometimes, it's bad service. But there's a difference between crazy busy, and jerk-off attitude. Bad attitudes are easy to spot. But so is crazy busy. Any other day, if it's not busy, they'll make eye contact, and be relaxed enough to give a really thoughtful answer to your questions.

    Everyone has needs, and that's entirely understandable. All I'm trying to say is, if they're clearly in the middle of something, wait your turn. Wait until you see them looking around, and then get their attention. And try not to take it personally if you're one of a dozen people in their face at that particular moment, and they're trying to keep things moving.


    -Once in a while, go in and buy an innertube, or a couple of power bars, or whatever. Generally, the shops are full of nice people, with good attitudes, but they still have a bottom line. But it's still a business relationship. Everyone knows the internet is cheaper for a lot of things. But Brick and Mortar stores run on money, and things like inner tubes are their bread and butter. Sure it costs a little more. But it's worth it to have a good LBS nearby. And it's definitely worth it to have a good relationship with them, and demonstrate your willingness to make sure that they're making money. If you really want to stand out, buy your stuff during the week, and strike up a conversation about something.

    -Try not to come in at 5 minutes to close with a seriously involved problem. It happens, people are human, "Hey, I think we can just make it..." and traffic can slow people down. And I know, and I'm very well aware, that if the customer can get through the door, they have a right to service. The customer is always right. But chances are it's already been a long day for them, and they'd really rather be on their way home... or out riding. This falls partly under the guideline of being prepared the day before a ride. If you have serious shifting issues, and a race the next day, it's really not cool to walk in as they're ready to go home, and dump a pile of work on them with a right now deadline. If they're inordinately nice people, they might help you. But they'll also remember you.

    -I don't want to make this a "You stupid f!cking customers!" rant. And I think if there's an undercurrent to all of this, it's this simple fact: You're here, online, for recreational purposes. They're at work because they have bills to pay, and I can promise you that inevitably, there are going to be difficult customers for them to deal with that day. The above stuff is a pile of some of my own baggage, and my personal rants. Try not to take any of them as personal insults... take them as an insight into the life of a retail clerk. We love our regular customers that understand that we have a job, and we have lives. And many of us love to hang out and talk shop, discuss bike issues, and be friendly... when we don't have a gang of savages hounding us around the store with flat tires and brain damage. Days like that, the closest thing we get to a break is to shoot a greased rubber band at one of the other mechanics when they're not looking.


    -If you want to get in their good graces... Towards the end of the day, if you're a guy, bring in a 6 pack of good beer. If you're a girl, beer works, and so do cookies. Trust me, they'll appreciate it.

    If you want to have a friend at an LBS, (and if you're a newbie, trust me, you want a friend at an LBS) then be a friend. You wouldn't bother your best friend at his job when it's busy, try not to do the same to these poor guys. Stop by on Thursday afternoon, when there's no one else in the store, with a 6 pack of beer, explain to them that you're having a hard time with your bike, and that clearly these bottles are part of the problem. Beer is a complicated problem, requiring time, patience, and thorough consideration, and I'm sure they'll be willing to think it through, and talk shop with you.

  18. #268
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    Great posts in this thread! I have one bit of experience to relate, and I hope it serves as a caution for any new riders on rural roadways.

    I've been riding for a little over two years in a rural foothills area where there is relatively little traffic but lots of climbing. Because there is so little traffic on my local routes, I am usually very aware of engine noise when a car comes up behind me. However, I have been surprised more than once by a second car following the first. The driver of the second car doesn't always see a rider making his or her way up the hill. I've learned to listen for that additional engine noise as the first car passes.

    Safe and happy riding!
    Why is there something when there could have been nothing?" Paul Tillich

  19. #269
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    Great tips.
    I actually love the "bike stand" advice ☺️☺️



    Sent from my SM-G920T using Tapatalk

  20. #270
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    if i could go back in time and give myself a few tips, i would say ...

    1. ride upper-level vintage road, like your uncle.
    2. put down the novel, and read sheldon brown.
    3. never take your bike to the shop. do all the work yourself.
    4. ride new wheels and build them on vintage hubs using sheldon's wheelbuilding page. it's easier than baking a soufflé.
    5. don't crash.
    Yossarian: don't worry. nothing's going to happen to you that won't happen to the rest of us.

  21. #271
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackfrancois View Post
    if i could go back in time and give myself a few tips, i would say ...

    1. ride upper-level vintage road, like your uncle.
    2. put down the novel, and read sheldon brown.
    3. never take your bike to the shop. do all the work yourself.
    4. ride new wheels and build them on vintage hubs using sheldon's wheelbuilding page. it's easier than baking a soufflé.
    5. don't crash.
    Hmm... about #5, how?

    I try really hard not to crash but sometimes it just happens.

  22. #272
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    Don't wear a bathing suit and ride. You will regret the chafing.

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