Cycling thread

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Chris P

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This thread is for discussing our cycling activities, no matter our skill level or experience. Do you go around the neighborhood with the kids? Are you a competitive cyclist, jetting off each weekend to some crazy timed century ride? Are you a commuter? Or are you like me, scheduling mini-challenges for yourself and just taking in the sights along the way?

Feel free to discuss your latest equipment, your Strava stats, your goals and accomplishments, or get recommendations on the new e-bikes. See anything really cool on your last outing? Have any neat stories you'd like to share?
 

gem1122

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I try to bike a few times a week. FL is great because it's so darn flat! I go about 10 miles on my Trek Verve 3. I don't ride to race or for time -- I just like the different perspective cycling gives you. Of course, it's a great workout, too. We have a car rack but rarely go anywhere else. We're fortunate that the areas around us offer good riding.
 

Dennis E. Taylor

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I used to street bike, lo these many decades past. Then life happened. But recently I bought myself and my wife a couple of mountain bikes. We do walking trails, and right now I do green mountain biking trails on my own. I'm planning on taking the mountain bike course at Whistler. Or I was, anyway. Summer evaporated too quickly this year. May have to wait until spring.

But I've done the Whistler walking and green trails a couple of times on my own, racking up 30-40 km at a time. They're pretty good and very extensive. Around home (Coquitlam), it's a little more difficult because of traffic, so I'm more likely to put the bikes on the rack and drive somewhere.

Mountain biking is surprising good exercise, and really good for getting the heartrate up.
 

Chris P

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I agree about the good workout. Biking is the only exercise I've ever liked enough to do consistently. My wife and I live 1000 miles apart, so I have DC bikes and Michigan bikes, both road and mountain.

My summer evaporated too, between a wetter than normal year and more work travel during the best biking months. Strava reports that as of now I've only gone less than half the distance I did in 2017. I better get busy!

DC is great for biking because we have a lot of lanes and trails, and people aren't surprised to see you (usually). Only downside is every trail is always crowded.
 

Chris P

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I had a nice long ride this weekend, but the bike (not even two years old) threw the chain about three times. The back derailer was always crunchy, but it's gotten worse lately (it's "popping" under load, if that makes sense) and it's never thrown the chain like this before. Is this something an adjustment could fix, or is there something else going on?
 

Dennis E. Taylor

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If the derailer is out of adjustment, it might be trying to drop the chain between sprockets whenever you shift. Sprockets could also have worn teeth, but that seems unlikely on a 2-yr-old bike.
 

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I bike to work everyday rain or shine. I don't have a car and do my shopping by bike. When I was younger I rode from KY to the Oregon coast.
 

Chris P

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That's an epic ride, underdawg! I'm sure there weren't all that many hills along the way :D No like, mountains or anything.

I'll probably bring the bike in for a checkup on the chain issue. Problem is it's going to be the first non-rainy day all week on Saturday, and one of theblast good Saturdays before it gets colder (I have travel for most of October so we're looming at November before I'll have another chance). I don't want to lose a day of biking with the bike in the shop, but I don't want to do a big ride with the chain slipping/jumping either.

Indecision! Argh!
 

Chris P

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I'm happy to report the bike behaved itself today; mostly. The rear derailer was still kind of crunchy, but it didn't throw the chain at least. I can't blame the bike for a construction staple through the front tire, though. My patch didn't hold, so although I got home okay the tire's now flat. Time for a new tube!

My ride today was a 45-mile trek along the Maryland perimeter of DC. The District was originally laid out in a diamond, 10 miles on each side roughly centered on what is now the Washington Monument. However, the Virginia side of the Potomac went back to Virginia in the 1840s because the District didn't want to keep paying for the roads (among other political stuff, mostly involving Alexandria as a major slave trading port). You can still see the original shape in a county map, because the VA side became Arlington County. But at some point since then, Western, Eastern, and Southern Avenues were laid out on the boundary with Maryland through mostly residential areas. We got more hills than I expected! I would have bumped against the Potomac to make a full circle of it (would have been just over 50 miles total) but I ran across a 5 Guys. Those 5 Guys always get me.
 
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Chris P

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Wow, it's been a whole month since I biked last! Where is the time going?

Is anyone getting out for the fall colors? Any great pics to share?

Actually, my absence was due to a family vacation and work travel. We planned to get some biking in during the vacation, but no such luck. Too much else to do and kinda grey weather. I got out today, just into town and back. Here, we can have good weekends any time this winter. I remember an excellent single-track ride last December, and glorious days in February, so hopefully today was not "the last rose of summer." Or if so, the next one won't be long in coming.
 

Chris P

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I need Christmas advice, people!

I'm interested in asking Santa a GPS and route tracker, but from what I've seen none of them are any better than what Strava on my phone can do. If I'm going to have my phone with me anyway, and a battery pack to recharge (the only advantage I can see to getting a separate thing to have to tote around with me), why get the gadget in the first place?

Am I missing something, or are these doohickies passe and I should just use my phone?
 

Chris P

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Most people steer me towards the Garmins. Any particular one?
 

Dennis E. Taylor

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I own a Garmin and a Bontrager, and I use the latter more now, simply because it's a bigger screen and easier to see at a glance. There's not a lot of difference between them except that the Garmin seems to take a little longer to lock onto its location when it's started up. It all depends on what features you want, but all else being equal, go for bigger screen real-estate.

I also have a handlebar mount for my iPhone, which I use with Trailforks when I'm doing off-road. Getting thoroughly fucking lost is such a bother. ;)
 

Chris P

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Thanks Dennis. Do I read that right that the Bontrager isn't good for off-road? I'm on-road 95% of the time, but that's not where I get lost. :)
 

Dennis E. Taylor

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The Bontrager's fine, but I like having the trail maps from Trailforks. When I'm off-road I'm not so concerned about cadence and speed.
 

Chris P

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Waaah!!! My mountain bike got stolen!!!:cry:Middle of the day, chained up and in plain sight of a busy intersection. They cut the cable and fwoof. Gone. Available cameras either don't record or weren't recording at the time (not that DC police are going to sit through 6 hr of video to see when it happened, but still).

The police have a network of pawn shops in the DC/VA/MD area, but of course the crooks know that and folks in the know say bikes stolen in DC get shipped to New York or Philly.

I posted it to a couple stolen bike Facebook groups and BikeIndex.org. Does anyone know if there are other similar sites I could try?
 

Chris P

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We had a strangely warm day yesterday, and I had the day off, so forget all the tasks I had planned! I took the new bike (that replaced the stolen one) on its first adventure. I went about 30 miles on roads, paved trails, a short bit of gravel. The newbie handled it like a champ! I celebrated with a stop at the line of food trucks downtown. The new bike is a Cannondale Trail 4, just a notch up from the Trail 5 that was stolen. These Cannondales are faster than I expected a mountain bike to be, although nowhere near road bike fast of course. They've turned out to be great city bikes even if they handle rough single tracks just as well.
 

Chris P

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How's everyone's spring preparations coming along? Is it warm enough to get out yet?
 

Dennis E. Taylor

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Just got our bikes tuned up for spring. There are lots of bikes out around here in the Lower Mainland (Vancouver BC & area).

Meanwhile, the webcams up on Mt Seymour are showing large patches of ground through the snow. I think snowboarding season is basically over on the locals. :cry:
 

Chris P

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I had the rear derailer replaced on the road bike. I never liked how that bike shifted (really crunchy) so I'm excited to see if that was the problem the whole time. I was blaming the brand all this time.
 

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