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22

Keep your front brake. It does the most work, it will stop you much faster than your rear brake ever could hope to. Take a look at a motorcycle, the front brakes are always much larger than the rear. Whenever you brake, on a bicycle, motorcycle, in a car, more weight is transfered to the front wheels, so the front tire has more traction to stop you with. ...


18

You can probably change the stem to something shorter with more rise and not have anything else to change. This may be enough to relieve the back pressure and the drop bars will give you more hand positions which I've always found easier on my carpal tunnel. Changing the handle bars to flat bars will mean you have to get a set of shifters and brake levers ...


10

I agree with the others, it doesn't seem like stickers should be a problem. My helmet has stickers on the shell added by the manufacturer - clearly they were added make me ride faster. Paint is a different story... Polystyrene (aka Styrofoam) and certain other plastics can be damaged by the solvents used in paints, like some spray paints. I believe ...


7

Difficult to say without knowing more about the bike, but I'd trade it in for a better bike; Huffy has a rep for low-end, tank-like bikes. From your description, you'd need to replace the frame and front fork to see any significant weight savings. Something with an aluminum frame like a hybrid bike would probably be easier to carry up the stairs, even ...


6

This is an extremely bad idea, and it may or may not be illegal where you live. It's pretty common for the law to require you to be able to lock up both wheels on flat dry pavement. Regardless, both brakes are important, and you shouldn't remove one for something a silly as weight reduction. The contact patch on your tires is small enough already without ...


6

Getting the weight of your back is a good idea. Another thing to try is some back/core strengthening exercises. Much better than getting some hybrid good for nothing cycle! I am hesitant to suggest exercises as I am not a doctor but there is a lot of body-weight stuff you can do easily enough.


5

I would consider changing your crankset to a true compact, 50t/34t, and running an 11/25 rear cassette. Campy actually made a specific derailleur for running a compact front, because they said that the 50t doesn't work well with the standard front derailleur (that may be a function of the tooth differential, so it may not apply if you leave the 39t in ...


5

As long as the material in the paint doesn't cause the helmet material to degrade, it should be fine. While helmets do sometimes break apart in a crash, that's not a primary design requirement for them to keep your head protected. The two things a helmet does to keep your head safe during a crash are compress (to absorb the impact) and stay securely ...


5

One of the main problems with converting an old bike is the width of the headset. Old rigid mountain bikes[1] commonly have a 1" headset while modern suspension bikes have a 1 1/8" diameter headset. Suspension forks are mostly for 1 1/8" headsets so fitting suspension to an old rigid mountain bike is normally a non starter for that simple reason. The ...


5

I would consider looking at a used later model bike.The improvements made in the last 18 years are worth the money.A decent fork can run hundreds of dollars not including installation. Check with your local bike shop for used bikes or craigs list if you keep it local so you can see before you buy.Bikepedia is a good reference to make sure you have an idea ...


4

What you most likely have is an old-fashioned coaster brake, along with a hand brake. In reality the coaster brake is probably more "natural" for someone learning -- the hand brake is mostly an affectation designed to make the bike appeal more to boys (of all ages). But it is possible to disassemble the rear hub and disable the brake in most cases. There ...


4

I do not know how heavy your backpack is, but I would defo start by getting that off your back, If you carry your laptop round in it then its too heavy. Stick it in a saddle bag. It makes the whole trip more enjoyable, you are free to move around, your back gets relief and the bike carries the weight and you'll be quicker!.


3

Stickers are fine... paint is the danger as mentioned already. Some helmets are constructed using a thin plastic shell that is stuck to the foam base. If you remove the shell and paint that seperately, then re-attach it you should be fine. However, as you should get a new helemt every few years, to make the manufactures happy and to be safe because the ...


2

Panniers are a great idea. Having the weight off your back will give you more stability. Flat bars are nice but not required. If your road setup has C-drops, just ride with your hands on the hoods. Check into an adjustable stem. This will allow you to position it as you like. Since this will be a commuter, the extra weight of an adjustable stem is of ...


2

Since you may need a big gear to power down big hills, let's look at the effect in gear inches of changing from 53 to 50. 53/13*27=110 50/13*27=104 (27 is arbitrary figure for comparison) So you will be losing 6 'gear inches' at the top end. Your next sprocket is presumably a 14 tooth, 53/14*27=102 If you went for a 49 then 49/13*27=102 Therefore, you ...


2

About stickers: The Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute writes in an article: The Snell Memorial Foundation has informed us that the hundreds of crashed helmets they examined in a study done in the mid-1990's with Harborview Injury Prevention Center showed no ill effects from any of the stickers that had been applied. But duct tape can compromise a ...


1

There are seat posts available that have a curve that can be used to the rear or to the front. Without knowing your height or more importantly, your weight, recommendations can't be made, but I'll include links that may help you decide. I surely wouldn't recommend making your own from handle bars or any material you don't know the history of. If the seat ...


1

A quick check around the interwebs (http://www.lmgtfy.com/?q=chain+drive+rpm+limit) took me to this site: http://www.practicalmachinist.com/vb/general/roller-chain-sprocket-rpm-210682/ It looks very practical to use some sort of chain for what you want to do. Bike chain might work, might not, but the cog you're using doesn't look suitable for bike chain ...


1

My concern is that once I get moving (maybe 15-20mph) the chain will be moving so fast around that tiny sprocket that it will come off. You can use a chain tensioner to keep tension on the chain, so some slack on the chain won't cause the chain to skip off the sprocket.


1

I changed the tyres on my MTB for slicker ones, The difference was very noticeable and more comfortable. Running higher pressure in the tyres also helps, but be careful not to exceed the tyres recommended max. Also I would recommend reducing the weight if you can, remove any unnecessary parts


1

If you reduced the size of the large ring substantially it would probably be "recommended" that you to adjust the front derailer and shorten the chain (though from a mechanical limits/clearance point of view adjustment wouldn't be required). However, reducing by only 3 teeth is not likely to affect derailer adjustment, and at most you'd remove one double ...


1

How to kludge up a "fix" Obtain two stainless-steel "spiral" hose clamps, a little larger than your frame tubes. Obtain some shift cable housing material and a new shift cable (or two), as long as possible (your existing will likely be too short). Obtain an extension (pull) spring you judge to be about twice as stiff as the spring on the derailer (measured ...



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