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61

I think it mostly comes down to one primary thing: disc brakes weigh more and road bikes are supposed to be light. Also, you need a heavier wheel and heavier fork to handle the forces of disc braking, which compounds the weight. Additionally, the advantages to disc brakes (working better in mud/dirt, easier to work with a suspension, work with really wide ...


32

Keep it Simple Not everyone knows how to setup and maintain disc brakes. I know that it does not take a lot of work to read the manual but people sometimes prefer to stick to what they know and are hesitant to purchase a bike they do not feel they can confidently work on. Flawed Technology Disc brakes are far from perfect. We all should know that the ...


31

Reference - Cyclecraft by John Franklin A cycle takes more than twice as far to stop using only the rear brake compared to using only the front brake, which will usually stop the machine just as quickly as using both brakes. Nevertheless, you should always apply the rear brake, and slightly in advance of the front brake, so that a slight skid at the rear ...


29

You can absolutely ride road on a cx bike. Many of the components are actually road components, including the wheels, so slap a pair of 700x23's on the stock wheelset and off you go. Things to consider: 1)Cross bikes are going to be a little heavier than a road bike in the same price range- probably a couple to a few pounds. Ultimately not that big of a deal ...


28

Gabe, If you love the frame, and are willing to spend the money to keep it, start upgrading everything else. Start with: Wheels/tires - rotating mass will slow you down the most - go to aluminum wheels and thin/light tires size 23 or 25. Bottom Crank - Once again rotating mass, you can get some hollow core cranks, and adjust the chainring sizes to the ...


27

The tread on a road bike's tires is really quite unimportant and purely cosmetic. Road bike tires have tread patterns because they sell better, not because they perform better. Here's some questions to ask to decide about replacing a tire: Can you see any of the fabric? Are you getting flats more easily than you used to? Is any part of the tire bulging ...


27

To be honest, I think you handled the situation pretty well as it was. You've got to get yourself to the bottom of the mountain safely and even in locales which have laws about deliberately impeding following road users you will have to allow people to pass in a manner safe for you, this isn't necessarily going to be immediately. Seems to me that this ...


25

Do yourself a huge favor, inflate them daily. As they are high pressure and low volume they tend to lose air quicker than that of a tube that is low pressure and high volume (MTB). With daily inflation checks you will vastly reduce the instances of pinch flats, which imo are typically the result of too low pressure. Butyl tubes, the typical tube, retain ...


25

This is not an either-or proposition. Your bike is hitting the bumps and supporting your full weight (minus the very small proportion of weight that might be falling at that exact moment) regardless of how you stand when you hit the bumps. The difference is whether you're going to let the additional damping effects of the down tube, seat tube, bottom ...


24

They're fine. I live outside of Vancouver so I'm already riding in wet a few days a week some weeks. Just this morning I was coming down the backside of a climb at 70km and they were totally secure. Since the tires are so narrow they don't suffer from hydroplaning. The biggest thing to worry about is painted lines and manhole covers (or other metal covers ...


24

All other things being equal, run them as high as the tyre manufacturer recommends (there will be an advisory notice on the tyre wall). For most tyres of even medium quality, this should be at least 100psi, if not 110; higher end tyres might go up to 130+. (I generally inflate both tyres to similar pressures, but I think that there are some theories that if ...


24

The question of big box bike quality to one side, the question should be not whether it's "appropriate" to ride this bike, but whether you like it. Are you physically comfortable riding the bike? If so, great! If not, there are several questions here about bike fit that may help you get comfortable on the bike. A bike that doesn't fit you will never be a ...


24

The key to understanding your situation is its unusual nature. Speed on hills is mostly determined by power-to-weight, while speed on the flat is mostly determined by power-to-aerodynamic drag. The problem is that speed in head winds is also mostly determined by power-to-aero drag, so the conundrum is why you're good in head winds but not on the flat under ...


24

A mountain bike will never really be a road bike. The geometry and construction of the frame is different. Mountain bike frames are designed for a different posture and are often designed for a suspension fork, as well as generally being beefier. You can set up a mountain bike with slick tires and drop bars if you want. I've tried this before and the ride ...


24

Rob, you are correct that a heavier bike will give you a greater fitness benefit over the same distance. The only real counter-point I have is that the most effective bikes for fitness are the ones that get ridden. So, if some reason a lighter bike would more fun or appealing to you (while still be a "good enough" commuter), than a lighter bike could be a ...


23

On my reasonably flat commute I average around 16 mph on my road bike, but your average speed is dependent on many different factors. A general rule of thumb is that if you are switching from a mountain bike with knobbies to a road bike you will be between 15-20% faster at the same watts/effort. Typically that's only a change of 2-3 mph. I teach a bike ...


22

Some years ago, Bicycling magazine did a shootout on available locks and the Kryptonite "New York Chain" came out on top. Unfortunately, it weighs more than many bikes and is not easy to carry either. Fine if you can leave it where you lock your bike. I'm with the police department at a major university, and we have a program through Kryptonite where we ...


21

If I see a significant bump coming (on my touring bike -- no suspension), or just a stretch of fairly rough pavement, I'll generally raise my bum a few inches off the seat and flex my arms, so that my legs and arms are the "springs". This in not only more pleasant than taking the hard bumps, it also helps the bike maintain contact with the road, reducing ...


20

Check out this link for a recent post by ex frame-builder Dave Moulton about disc brakes. He discusses the reverse-directed stress to the spokes due to disc brakes as a potential problem. He also points out that the standard caliper brake can be viewed as a disc brake with a much larger diameter disc (the rim) and without the problem of transferring the ...


20

Yes, all bikes could ride on roads. However, a road bike is one that's optimized for riding on smooth pavement. It usually has skinny tires (no wider than 32mm, often much narrower) with a very light tread. (If they have any tread at all. Some road tires, such as the Kojac, are treadless or "bald", to cut down on rolling resistance.) Road bikes usually have ...


20

I try to put out a constant amount of effort no matter what slope I'm on: A constant 'cadence' of 60 to 90 RPM (that's how fast you spin the pedals) A constant force on the pedals The useful energy you put in is proportional to a product of the force multiplied by the cadence: spinning faster at the same force results in more energy input. To keep my ...


20

While some will say "it's just supply and demand" and companies charge "whatever the market will bear", I'm not convinced that your comparison is fair to try and determine whether bikes are overpriced relative to motorcycles. Using a $4,000+ road bike and comparing it to a $3,000 motorcycle is comparing the upper end of one product to the lower end of ...


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 ...


18

I don't think this should be viewed from a strictly legal or normative point of view, so I'll give my impressions as a former driver and as someone with some experiences of overtaking cars downhill by bike, either on-road and off-road (unpaved roads). First of all, if you drove like you were alone (hypothetically speaking), by no means you would endanger a ...


18

Please accept my apologies on behalf of cyclists. Hollerin' something at a motorist who was trying to figure out how to handle an obviously unclear situation was inappropriate. Thanks for doing your best and not killing any cyclists that day! In general, I agree with the other answers here that you handled this fine and there isn't some magic you could have ...


17

You can get a set of slicks or semi-slick tires that will reduce your rolling resistance. If you're using it to commute lots as well then fenders are awesome to keep the rain off. I have a snap on rear fender that goes on any bike I'm riding if it's raining (outside of races). I hate having a wet butt.


17

Pinch flats are due to under-inflation of tires. On a road bike you should be inflating your tires to 120-130 lbs. Also, you need to check and re-inflate your tires every time you ride. I just keep my pump right next to my bike, and wind up adding air every 2nd or 3rd day. I see you added tire size - those are older bike tires, they don't inflate as high ...


17

Inflating daily might be a bit more work that necessary. Inflate them before every ride. From my experience with 700x25c tires at 115 PSI, I find they lose about 5 PSI after 24 hours, just due to the natural properties of the rubber. I ride a few times a week, and it's part of my standard pre-ride checklist to give each tire about 3-4 strokes on the floor ...


17

Years ago when cars started to get ABS, the argument was that a skilled driver could stop quicker with it turned off, and there was proof of it. When Traction control came in a skilled driver could go faster with it turned off. When ESP became available, ditto. We all know that an unskilled driver benefits enormously from these aids, and it turns out not ...


17

The last major technological improvement in standard bicycles was indexed shifting. The indexing part of this isn't that big a deal, but the feature also gives you the ability to shift under load (which is a big deal). I'm thinking this change occurred in the late 80s, but my memory for chronology is poor. Yes, since then we've gotten V-brakes, carbon ...



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