22
votes
5answers
1k views

Can you shift both the front and back gears simultanously?

Is it advisable to shift both the front and back gear simultaneously? Can this cause any damage?
22
votes
4answers
628 views

Basic toolkit for bicycle maintenance

What should be in the basic toolkit for someone that wants to maintain their own bicycle? I'm looking for something for your average day to day maintenance and tools that I will get the most use out ...
22
votes
9answers
25k views

What is the best breakfast right before cycling?

Sometimes I feel I will faint when I am cycling in the morning. I usually don't have this problem after lunch. My breakfast is rich in carbohydrates, but maybe I'm eating too much or missing some ...
22
votes
8answers
7k views

Why is the front brake lever on the right if you 'drive' on the left and vice-versa?

I live in the UK and I expect my front brake lever to be operated by my right hand. However, I recently went on a friend's bike that had the brakes 'back to front', which would be the 'right way ...
22
votes
5answers
2k views

Recommendation for panniers used off the bike a lot

I'm looking for panniers. I mostly just potter around town, and am not planning any cycle touring so my main criteria is that the panniers should be easy to carry around off the bike. Built in ...
21
votes
7answers
2k views

Are Z-shaped cranks a good idea?

I've stumbled across this kickstarter project, which promotes an original shape for cranks: They claim a wider arc of useful push during rotation. While their main point is rendered moot by ...
21
votes
10answers
60k views

What pressure should I run my Road Bike tyres at?

There's a question for mountain bike tyres but I can't seem to find anything on here for road bikes. At the moment I'm running at around 90psi. Is that too much? too little? Also, am I more likely to ...
21
votes
10answers
1k views

What to wear when it's cold?

If I put on heavy clothes it will be very hot inside them after the warm-up. If I wear only a T-shirt I'll freeze. What's the solution? I ride around 20 km in a hilly city, with temperatures between ...
21
votes
14answers
10k views

When should I not use my front brake?

I have only been riding for a short time and I remember when I was a child there was a belief that if you used your front brakes going downhill that you would fly over your handlebars. However, my ...
21
votes
4answers
12k views

How are the categories for climbs decided?

In cycle racing, there are five grades or categories for climbs - Category 4, 3, 2, 1 & Hors (Above Category or HC). How do they decide what is category 1 and what makes it so hard it is a HC?
21
votes
11answers
5k views

Do glueless tube patches work as well as glue ones?

Quite a few years ago I tried some glueless patches for repairing my punctured tubes while out on the road, and found that they rarely stayed on for very long. I know that technology has advanced a ...
21
votes
4answers
3k views

Are bananas still a good food to carry when cycling?

I am very much an old school cyclist and I always carry a banana with me when I go on rides longer than an hour. In the past I have found them ideal - they easily fit in my jersey pockets, the ...
21
votes
4answers
324 views

Do I have to simply wait for google maps to add cycling directions to my area? Or can I help?

Related to this question about submitting road data to google maps. I'm curious to know if there is any way to get Google started on cycling data in my city. There are a lot of cyclists in my city, ...
21
votes
5answers
4k views

what makes a good entry level road bike?

I've been riding a mountain bike for years, but I prefer to go longer distances on paved ground, so I think a road bike would be better. When I ask what is a good bike, I don't need brands/models - ...
21
votes
2answers
4k views

How to know when to change a chain?

A bike shop employee used a tool he said would check the wear on the chain, and said that it should be changed. He said it took a measurement that meant the chain had expanded, but it is still hard ...
21
votes
8answers
1k views

What type of brakes is least subject to failure in the winter?

There is a lot of snow in the winter where I live. Different kinds of snow; soft, sticky, wet, etc. And ice too. It can get pretty cold: -25 °C (-15 °F). We drop salt, sand and gravel on our roads. ...
21
votes
2answers
598 views

How to wash a bike properly?

I use my bicycle in a typical urban commute setting. No extreme MTB, but it still accumulates some dust and grime. How should I wash my bicycle?
21
votes
2answers
5k views

Does the chain direction make a difference?

Recently, I helped a friend install a new chain on her road bike, and for the first time read the instructions for installing one. It seems to claim that there's a forward direction, and that it ...
20
votes
16answers
67k views

Converting a MTB to a Road Bike

I just bought a new MTB and am planning to change my previous MTB into a Road Bike. How do I do it? What kind of parts do I need to change or add or remove? I am not looking to for a full ...
20
votes
11answers
753 views

Safety guidelines for cycling in traffic

Please post your safety tips for cycling/commuting that should help you get to your destination place in one piece. I came across a nice printed guideline a few years ago when working as courier, it ...
20
votes
7answers
5k views

How to achieve an always clean chain

My chain and cogs always look very dirty as the oil attracts dirt. It is a constant problem as you can't fully avoid stains on your trousers and hands. Also, that looks ugly and I believe it wears the ...
20
votes
11answers
13k views

Are there advantages of dedicated bike computer instead of smartphone apps?

I do a lot of road biking. I have a basic Catseye onboard computer for my speed and odometer. But I also use my iPhone to track and record my biking. I've tried a variety of iPhone apps, the best ones ...
20
votes
8answers
3k views

Arguments for/against bike lanes?

What are the arguments for and against bike lanes? Can anyone summarize the best reasons they're good for and bad for cyclists and automobile drivers? For example, Are there some environments ...
20
votes
8answers
29k views

How often should I change road bike tyres?

My road bike has now done 500 miles, but unlike cars, I've no idea how often the tyres should be changed. It's used on normal road conditions. The brow of the tyre is now smooth. How do I know if my ...
20
votes
13answers
7k views

What is a good iPhone app for bikers?

There are tons that are out there for recording routes, and such. There's also the physical mounting. Is the iPhone actually good/useful for bikers?
20
votes
6answers
3k views

Best practices for commuting with rack & panniers

I've been starting to commute by bike more (about 6 miles each way) and decided to upgrade from my cheap, old mountain bike to something more suitable. I just bought a used 2009 Kona Jake off ...
20
votes
5answers
387 views

What are some good tips for riding in a large group?

One of the popular bike routes near me has a few groups that ride together on Saturday and Sunday. The groups get as big as 30 to 40 riders and they move fast (25 to 35 mph). I have occasionally ...
20
votes
7answers
3k views

How can I teach my capable 20-something friend to ride a bike?

My friend, let's call him Jack, does not know how to ride a bicycle. Jack is a fully capable 27-year-old man. His father was incarcerated during a block of his upbringing, leaving him without a skill ...
20
votes
5answers
1k views

How can I improve my pedal stroke?

I know a part of biking endurance and speed come from having a perfect pedal stroke. What should I do to improve my pedal stroke?
20
votes
7answers
889 views

What are important items for a touring first-aid kit?

When riding long distances, either solo or with groups of people, it is obviously necessary to carry a first-aid kit in case of a crash or other injury. What are the most important items to pack, ...
20
votes
4answers
97k views

How can I tell which size chain my bike uses?

After learning how to break a chain and reattach it, and also how to add and remove a master link, I find that I can now do much more in the way of maintenance at home. I'll no longer need to bring my ...
20
votes
4answers
8k views

How can you recognise a quality steel frame?

I'm looking to buy/build a road bike and I would like it to: last 100 years have a low environmental cost As I'm not interested in shedding grams (a diet would be more helpful for me), I'm leaning ...
20
votes
5answers
2k views

Which states or countries have stop-sign-as-yield laws for bicyclists (Idaho stop law)?

In Idaho (PDF), bicyclists are allowed to treat stop signs as yields, and red lights as stop signs (essentially; see the actual law for details). This seems like a very reasonable approach, balancing ...
20
votes
5answers
1k views

Spokes keep breaking - bad hub or bad build?

Background information A bit of background information (I'll try keep it brief): Last year I bought an old but unused bike, 5 speeds with internal gearing. Apparently the shop bought a lot of bikes ...
19
votes
7answers
2k views

What is the hand gesture for “I'm sorry”?

I usually signal "turn left" and "turn right" and "pass me by, take point". However, there is one more situation that happens to me often and I do not know a widely accepted gesture to convey my ...
19
votes
8answers
6k views

How do I prevent my pants from getting caught into the bike gears

I have the unfortunate habit of always getting my jean pants stuck in my gears and end up with a nice rip on the seams. I've used those velcro braces to keep the bottom of my pants leg close to my ...
19
votes
5answers
2k views

How should a bicycle helmet fit?

I see enough folks wearing helmets in such a manner that they might as well not be. What is the proper way to fit & wear a bicycle helmet?
19
votes
10answers
1k views

Theft deterrents (in addition to locking up a bike)

Besides locking a bike up properly, are there other deterrents against theft (such as engraving) that make a bicycle less attractive to a potential bike thief? UPDATE It was stolen. :-(
19
votes
7answers
1k views

What are some alternatives to fruitlessly ringing my bell at a motorist?

I doubt that motor-vehicle drivers can hear the "ding" sound that a bicycle bell makes. What are some better alternatives?
19
votes
6answers
470 views

Do cyclists warrant special consideration under traffic laws?

I recently saw a YouTube channel where a motorist with an agenda has taken it upon himself to film cyclists as they break traffic laws. Most (perhaps not all) of the actions I observed would be what I ...
19
votes
6answers
15k views

Am I too heavy for my road bike tires?

I am wondering if bike tires have a weight limit. I have to admit, I am a large guy at 6'3" 250lb (190 cm, 113,5 kg), and I have always had issues with my road bike's tires getting pinch flats. I ...
19
votes
12answers
30k views

Is it better to have a slightly big or slightly small bike?

I'm planning to buy a Scott Speedster S30 (This is my first road bike) and I'm looking at the size chart. I'm around 177 cm tall, and this fits exactly in between the M and L section. Just wondering, ...
19
votes
5answers
7k views

Pros/Cons of Bar-Ends?

I've always heard "never use barends" and they're banned equipment for some of the local clubs/group rides. A number of people on-line swear by them though. What's up with that!? :-) Why would I ...
19
votes
5answers
34k views

How do I separate disc brake pads after accidentally pulling the front brake while the wheel is off?

The title says it all really. I've taken the front wheel off my mountain bike to get it in my car. When I get it out and try and put the front wheel back on the space between the brake pads isn't wide ...
19
votes
3answers
1k views

Is fluorescent clothing effective?

I read recently that fluorescent clothing was not effective at all at night. If this is the case, how effective is it during the day, and should I stop buying tops that are fluorescent to use on my ...
19
votes
2answers
4k views

How to store bikes inside a house or unit with limited internal space?

Between my girlfriend and myself, we have 5 bikes of which 3 would ideally be stored inside (the two road bikes and my duallie). However, my house is a relatively small terrace house which doesn't ...
19
votes
1answer
367 views

Selecting the right crank length

What is the best way to determine the correct crank length for my height and more specifically my leg length?
18
votes
10answers
8k views

Using a ski helmet for winter biking

I am cuirious if anyone uses a skiing helmet for winter biking? Would this be safe? Are skiing helmets designed to protect you from the same kind of acidents that you would have on a bike? I am ...
18
votes
5answers
2k views

Does drafting cause resistance to the lead rider?

I know that when riding close to another cyclist, I expend less energy to go the same speed. But does the Conservation of Energy "law" mean that the lead cyclist is going to expend more energy to ...
18
votes
13answers
73k views

Can I use a cyclocross bike for regular road-biking purposes?

I want to race cyclocross, and I also want to ride some longer rides out on the road. Can I buy a cyclocross bike and use it for both cyclocross and some serious road rides (I'm talking century type ...

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