Bicycles

This is for all non-EC or peripheral-EC topics. We all know how much we love talking about 'The Man' but sometimes we have other interests.
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bambooneedle
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Bicycles

Postby bambooneedle » Thu Jun 25, 2015 5:52 am

I've gotten into bicycles in the last year and although threads here in The Annex no longer have much discussion I thought I'd at least share some of mine via pictures and with some background information about them for those interested enough to look and/or to discuss, post pics, etc.

My renewed interest is not so much that as it is now much more than it ever was. Before that I'd owned a trusty 12 speed Raleigh 'racer' for probably 20yrs. I'd occasionally put WD40 or Singer sewing machine oil on but other than that it never needed much maintenance and I didn't give it much thought.

I suppose I never had to seriously consider upgrading while I was only moved to ride the old bike occassionally but when I happened upon a matte black 'aluminum' Trek 7.0 FX (the entry model in that series) in a pawn shop for what looked like a good price, it said "buy me", and then I really wanted to ride. It was that kind of bike...

It came without mudguards but here it is in its present state -

Image

It's not a mountain bike as some (who are more usually used to road bikes I suppose) automatically refer to it, but a 'hybrid' or 'flat-bar road bike'. Mountain bikes are heavy inefficient things (I don't think I'd ever get one), this has 35mm tyres that are not 'knobby'. It's 21 speed with a triple front chainring so it's good for hills and it flies.

Here is a profile picture and more details about it - http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes/ci ... fx/7_0_fx/

I didn't really know what I'd bought, it just looked good and I'd heard of Trek - Lance Armstrong rode on Treks...


More to come tomorrow.

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bambooneedle
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Re: Bicycles

Postby bambooneedle » Fri Jun 26, 2015 7:43 am

So the plan for the Trek is for it to be a reliable commuter bike. It needs a decent sized sturdy rear rack to which I can strap a heavy bag.

I'm also tempted to modify the steerer-and-stem-in-one set-up and swap it over for one like on higher FX models where I can adjust the position of a stem (of a certain angle and length to be determined) with spacers. The ideal time for that would be if someone is selling a suitable carbon fork - also a chance to make the bike lighter (and more comfortable against bump vibrations) as the current fork is not aluminium but heavy high-tensile steel.

Next up is a bike a neighbour was getting rid of, a 'frankenbike' of sorts so another work in progress:

Image
Image

I had to get it to riding condition by finding a similarly neglected old Hanimex girl's bike on gumtree for $30 and combining the parts. What I liked most about it was the old lugged frame - of mysterious brand ('GoBike'. Internet searches revealed nothing, only about unrelated hire bikes called that). It's got a few nicks and scratches that have slight surface rust but what an awesome colour, a metallic blue that's been nicely weathered. The girl's bike had these mismatched (but at least functioning) wheels which included an old Shimano 3-speed internally geared hub. Only 2 were working so it needs an overhaul and regreasing but I won't bother attempting that yet (found a youtube video about how to do it with this model and it's a challenge) unless it gets worse. I may even change to another wheel later with another internally geared hub. But for now 2 gears are fine.

What I didn't like about it were these cottered cranks. One was loose so I bought a new cotter pin to install but the cranks kept not being at a perfect 180 degrees... Ok, they had some old school charm to some degree especially with these pedals, but it was getting irritating.

I got another single chainring crankset from my neighbour and put that on and changed the bottom bracket, my first ever bottom bracket change! It had less teeth so it made it even better with the limitations of the 2 gears and looked great! I was very pleased. I don't have a picture of it right now so i'll post a close up tomorrow.

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bambooneedle
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Re: Bicycles

Postby bambooneedle » Sat Jun 27, 2015 10:46 am

Here is the aforementioned newly-installed crankset:
Image
For those interested in the specs it's a Suntour crankset (165mm) with a 40-tooth Sugino chainring.

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bambooneedle
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Re: Bicycles

Postby bambooneedle » Thu Jul 02, 2015 8:15 am

Hm.. didn't mean for this thread to become like my own personal blog on the subject -- would like to see about other peoples' bikes, reflections, experiences, etc -- however at the risk of looking like a showoff (so unlike me in the past...) I shall continue posting about my mostly relatively recent journey into the subject.

It has kind of surprised me to emerge as one of those things that will probably be a constant forevermore... riding and fixing your bike, there aren't many purer joys in life...

---

After a few months of riding my Trek a few times a week after work for "a good ride" (usually about 1-1.5hrs or so), I could really feel a difference. There is a biketrack closeby but I'd venture at my own chosen speed around every unknown path around that took my fancy and take in all the geography, it's very therapeutic.

I have a buddy that joined a poncy riding club where they ride together on the latest lightest roadbike they can afford and try to keep up at a certain speed, all closely monitored for analysis (heartrates, pedalling rpm cadence, etc) on their fancy bike computers, but that didn't appeal to me. He paid up big fees to be part of that and then when he couldn't keep up fitnesswise and very expensive bike maintenance cost wise (every time he broke a spoke it cost him a small fortune), and couldn't keep up with the regular rides and he couldn't get his money back, he felt quite burnt on his investment...

But I did want to get a good roadbike.

But, what kind? I was just starting out, did I really need what the bike shops would try to sell me? Did I, like my friend, need to pay a decent chunk of change for a 'bike fit' when I bought a new bike? He underwent a lengthy process of being measured, his riding position analyzed, his bike seat and seatpost and handlebars being tweaked a few critical millimetres or degrees... There are various theories about it and they get quite scientific. Some even argue that although your riding 'fit' may not feel the most comfortable at first, you 'grow into it', etc... Buying a roadbike wasn't like buying a motorbike where one size fits all, my friend told me, as he made suggestions to me about what suitable good-value 'beginner' brands (with corresponding low grade specs and so on) I might start with... It made me sick, I just wanted a nice bike that just felt good to ride. It didn't have to be carbon, it didn't have to be a brand that every other guy and his dog bought... As I kept enjoying the hell out of Trek hybrid, I'd glance at 2nd hand bikes on Gumtree for clues, and I was tempted to go for another Trek. Yeah, I'd probably buy another Trek so I looked closer at specific models.

Then, I started to learn about the Lance Armstrong story... It was unavoidable, he had confessed on Oprah that he had taken performance enhancing drugs and his 7 Tour de France "wins" had been stripped. Documentaries were coming out describing not just the prevalence of blood doping with Armstrong and others in cycling and so on but about the questionable ethics of some of the players and companies involved, like Trek... the more I found out about Trek and their dodgy treatment of primarily Greg Lemond (former US cycling champion who had won 3 Tour de Frances), who had his own bike company and who was getting Trek (whose star athlete was Armstrong) to manufacture Lemond bikes when their relationship soured over Lemond's public comments over time related to doping in cycling and his suspicions that Armstrong had been doping, the more reluctant I was to buy another Trek.

So in the middle of all that I found my first serious road bike:

Image
Image

details in my next post.

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Emotional Toothpaste
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Re: Bicycles

Postby Emotional Toothpaste » Fri Jul 10, 2015 3:20 pm

Thats one sweet road-bike. And I like the new crankset on the frankenbike.

Here is a picture of one of my bikes -- a tandem that I picked up at a swap-meet a couple years ago. Its been a lot of fun, especially when we hook up the Yakima trailer to it and throw the kids in it . . . or the dog. The trailer came in handy when our Eurovan broke down at the very moment of our arrival at Hilton Head Island for vacation. The van stayed in the shop all week waiting for a part, and the tandem and trailer were put into service as our mode of transportation around the island and also for picking up and hauling groceries.
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bambooneedle
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Re: Bicycles

Postby bambooneedle » Sat Jul 18, 2015 6:21 am

Sounds like an awesome adventure, ET. And what a frame. Been getting into Cannondales and really like the aluminium craftsmanship like those rounded-off welds at the headset tube. I found an early '92 roadbike with a 2.8 series frame from when they were still handmade in the good ole USA as yours probably was. Here is a closeup of the frame stripped :

Image

Am currently building it up with modern Shimano 105 10 speed parts mainly so when it's ready I'll unveil it. I haven't ridden it yet because of the state it was in:

Image
Will be saving some of the old parts for future builds.

Did you say bikesss, would love to see more of them.

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bambooneedle
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Re: Bicycles

Postby bambooneedle » Sat Jul 18, 2015 7:15 am

About the Lemond, the specs were pretty low grade, Shimano 8 speed Sora running gear including weird thumb-shifters, Bontrager original equipment manufacturer (OEM) bits, including a too-long stem I had to change, tektro brakes that now had rusty screws and springs...but what the hell, it was an awesome looking frame and it was a Lemond. It came with pretty basic wheels, I only acquired those old carbon ones very cheaply by chance when someone was upgrading to 11 speed and didn't feel comfortable flogging off used carbon which can be potentially dangerous for a lot. It's a 2008 Etape which I found out later is supposed to have been one of their less expensive models but I think that was mainly due to the equipment on it not the quality of the frame. As it turned out that was Lemond Bike's last year of mass production because of the big fallout with Trek and he is only now recently working on reviving the brand, so I was glad I found it as people seem to hold onto them now (the number of still way overpriced Trek Madones on the used bike market, some emblazoned with '7 Times Winner of the Tour de France', however...), the name has some great history behind it.

It was always begging for an upgrade so I've recently been getting some nice Shimano bits for it (it's really going to be my show-off bike, the Cannondale will be my No.1 serious road bike as it's just my size):

A 7800 series Dura-Ace 10 speed derailleur:
Image

7800 series Dura-Ace 10 speed STI shifters/brake levers (not my bike):
Image

6600 series Ultegra brake calipers (same generation as the above):
Image

Latest Tiagra 10-speed 170mm compact (50/34 teeth) crankset -
Image

And I also went with a new 10 speed Tiagra cassette and chain and bottom bracket (just ordered the Tiagra stuff today). Really looking forward to riding a compact crank as the 53/39 175mm cranks that the bike had were just too much for me at this point and I was cross-chaining a lot and steeper hills were difficult.


There have got to be more bike riders here...

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Emotional Toothpaste
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Re: Bicycles

Postby Emotional Toothpaste » Tue Oct 06, 2015 3:37 pm

Love the old Cannondales. I had a that exact 2.8 frameset on a Shimano 105 road-bike that I had for a while. Then I had a Cannondale with Suntour GPX. Loved that road bike too.

Just took my old mountain bike for a lunch time spin. Suntour XC Pro rear derailleur and thumb shifters, XC roller-cam rear brake, Deore crank, Deore XT cantilever front brake. Still rides great, though a bit heavy and no suspension to soften ride. Kids these days . . . :P
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bambooneedle
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Re: Bicycles

Postby bambooneedle » Fri Feb 26, 2016 5:19 am

I've come to appreciate Suntour somewhat more in the months since my last post here along my slow ongoing learning curve about road bikes. And it certainly is to be revered. GPX is kind of the holy grail of Suntour (their pinnacle of road bike 'groupos' (that's the Italian term...; 'group sets', in English) just before they went out of business...), as I've discovered in my growing appreciation of high grade 'tange 1' steel Centurion bikes finely made in Japan in the mid to late 80's before the growing Yen made them quite unobtainable, learning that the 'Ironman' model from '89 was fashioned with GPX. I've recently obtained an '87 model Ironman 'Expert' Centurion which rides awesomely and which i'll post about later. It's only 7speed at present with downtube shifters (double on the front) and easily the best steel bike I've ever ridden.

Here is my Cannondale project bike as I'd promised -
As I was building it up
Image
featuring modern Shimano 5700 series 105 compact cranks, 10 speed cassette and rear derailer, 6700 series Ultegra brake calipers

here is the finished build (just need to fine tune the position of the saddle):
Image
Got it pretty much just as I wanted it having added Deep V Velocity rims. I definitely wanted to retain the traditional style quill stem but opted for a carbon seatpost to help soften the ride on this particularly stiff aluminium frame.

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bambooneedle
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Re: Bicycles

Postby bambooneedle » Fri Mar 11, 2016 4:44 pm

Over time I've relied on youtube instructional videos for all sorts of solid bike-related advice on my journey of self-sufficient bike maintenance. Just thought I'd share an example:


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bambooneedle
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Re: Bicycles

Postby bambooneedle » Sat Mar 12, 2016 6:02 am

One more video. This guy is really good, gives very good no-fuss useful advice. In this case, how to go about buying a used roadbike:


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bambooneedle
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Re: Bicycles

Postby bambooneedle » Mon Jun 06, 2016 1:33 pm

Here is my latest bike:

How it was when I acquired it -
Image

HOW I WAS LUCKY TO GET THIS BIKE

I pounced on an ad on gumtree that I'd come across that had only been up for 4 hrs! It was pure chance, these bikes are hard to find. By chance I had just been reading about them, I knew where they stood in terms of quality Panasonic bikes and how revered Panasonic bikes were in general. The guy selling seemed to have little idea about just what he had and had advertised it for a mere $100. I contacted him immediately (around 11am) to try to set up a meeting and most-likely-sale and he said he wouldn't be available till later that night. I knew there'd be other people inquiring hard and making offers in the meantime, so I texted him a few hours later and told him to give me a chance to counter any offers made because "i really liked the colours of the bike and it seemed to be in my size" (in other words i played a bit dumb and didn't want to seem tooo desperate...)... By 6 he told me that there'd been an offer for $220 (which was believable enough to me) so I told him it's mine for $250 so long as he would hold it for me... and, he agreed!


I took a chance, I didn't really know what condition the bike or parts of it were in, but it seemed to look ok. Something told me to go for it. When I first laid eyes on it it was obvious that it had hardly been used, and it had all original parts. The original spec rims had hardly been used. The brake pads were hardly worn nor were the chain rings or sprockets... the saddle, although old-fashioned of-course, looked new... and, the wheels spun fairly true. And, it didn't look too dirty or old. However the original handlebar tape and brake lever hoods were long-worn. But by 6.30 that night I was the proud owner of this bike in approximately my size - it was 53cm - i was thoroughly chuffed to be walking away with it, wheeling it to the back of my car that day (Anzac sunday) as the sun was going down.


HOW IT LOOKS NOW

Image
Image

If you thought Panasonic only made stereos and other such appliances, you'd better think again...

Begather
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Re: Bicycles

Postby Begather » Thu Oct 13, 2016 7:07 am

bambooneedle wrote:I've gotten into bicycles in the last year and although threads here in The Annex no longer have much discussion I thought I'd at least share some of mine via pictures and with some background information about them for those interested enough to look and/or to discuss, post pics, etc.

My renewed interest is not so much that as it is now much more than it ever was. Before that I'd owned a trusty 12 speed Raleigh 'racer' for probably 20yrs. I'd occasionally put WD40 or Singer sewing machine oil on but other than that it never needed much maintenance and I didn't give it much thought.

I suppose I never had to seriously consider upgrading while I was only moved to ride the old bike occassionally but when I happened upon a matte black 'aluminum' Trek 7.0 FX (the entry model in that series) in a pawn shop for what looked like a good price, it said "buy me", and then I really wanted to ride. It was that kind of bike...

It came without mudguards but here it is in its present state -

Image

It's not a mountain bike as some (who are more usually used to road bikes I suppose) automatically refer to it, but a 'hybrid' or 'flat-bar road bike'. Mountain bikes are heavy inefficient things (I don't think I'd ever get one), this has 35mm tyres that are not 'knobby'. It's 21 speed with a triple front chainring so it's good for hills and it flies.

Here is a profile picture and more details about it - http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes/ci ... fx/7_0_fx/

I didn't really know what I'd bought, it just looked good and I'd heard of Trek - Lance Armstrong rode on Treks...


More to come tomorrow.


I wanted to ask you one question about sewing machine, i am planning to buy an automatic sewing machine for latest design sewing, which machine would be better for domestic usage? If you have some experience or a friend who know about it then please tell me because i really need it.


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