Search found 611 matches

by DevonDamo
30 Jul 2021, 11:03am
Forum: The Tea Shop
Topic: Electric everything.
Replies: 108
Views: 1612

Re: Electric everything.

axel_knutt wrote: 29 Jul 2021, 6:30pmWhat intrigues me is where we're going to get plastics and tarmac etc from once we're no longer pumping oil for petrol.
When I was a dope-smoking student, there was a bit of a cult book going around which had recently been published called 'The Emperor Wears No Clothes' which claimed that cannabis was only outlawed in Western countries in the 1920s was because of lobbying by the oil industry - DuPont, in particular. Their interest in this was, allegedly, that the hemp plant is the most cost-efficient source of all sorts of raw materials, including cellulose, which can be used to create biodegradable plastics.

Knowing nothing about industrial chemistry, I have no idea whether this is all drug-addled conspiracy nonsense, but the book does at least provide sources to back up the claims and a quick internet search doesn't throw up the deluge of unfavourable fact-checks by the scientific community which you usually get with this sort of stuff. BS or not, it's still an interesting read:

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... lothes.pdf
by DevonDamo
29 Jul 2021, 12:46pm
Forum: Touring & Expedition
Topic: Extremely low gears
Replies: 70
Views: 1574

Re: Extremely low gears

Thehairs1970 wrote: 29 Jul 2021, 12:13pmAm I the only one that feels there are some unnecessary comments here and boasts about your own ability? You are obviously blessed with amazing abilities but maybe you could work on modesty and understanding.
I thought exactly that when I read Tiggertoo's post, but I chose not to comment as I didn't know if it was just a case of someone having a cheeky pop at his mate. (If they're not mates, then that was a toe-curlingly embarrassing 'everyone! look at how good I am and how terrible this other person is' post.)
by DevonDamo
28 Jul 2021, 1:14pm
Forum: Touring & Expedition
Topic: Extremely low gears
Replies: 70
Views: 1574

Re: Extremely low gears

I've got the Shimano 12-speed, 51 tooth cassette on one of my mountain bikes. If you want to search for my one, you're looking for a 'Shimano SLX M7100 Cassette.' One problem you will encounter with this cassette is that it fits Shimano's micro-spline hub, which your bikes are unlikely to have. So you're either looking at a new back wheel, or finding a different large-sprocket cassette which doesn't need the micro-spline hub. One example of such that I'm aware of is the 'SunRace, 12-Speed, 11-51T.' (You'll need to do a bit of Googling to find out whether any of these will fit your hubs.)

Given that the 51 tooth cog is like a dinner plate, and the cassette goes down to a 10 toothed cog, your derailleur will need a lot of forward/backwards movement to take up the slack, so you'll probably want one with a clutch. (Mine is a 'Shimano XT, 12-Speed, SGS.') Then you need 11/12-speed shifters... (Edit: having read Tigerbiten's post below, it looks like it might not even be possible for the derailleur to cope with such a wide range on the rear cog, as well as the range up front with a triple - in which case the whole idea is a non-starter...)

You will be able to get cheaper versions of all the above - e.g. with Shimano, look for 'Deore' equivalents, which will be a bit heavier, but basically the same.

There's a bit more to all this than just fitting the right sized back-end components though - your existing chainrings may be too wide for an 11/12 speed chain, and if you want to get full bangs for your buck, you want to make sure the whole drive train, including chain and chainrings, all work together with the same shifting technology. (11/12 speed systems tend to have all sorts of new ridges and bumps to make the shifting slicker but the whole system wants to match up to get it working right.) So it could be a bit pricey - I'd start by pricing up the cheapest versions you can find of all the above, including chain, chainrings (and cranks, if you can't get 11/12 speed rings for your existing ones.) That should give you a rough starting point to decide whether it's worth all the expense and you could then ask some more specific questions on here about compatibility of the components you've got in mind. The other thing to bear in mind is that 11-speed, and particularly 12-speed, systems may have lower cassette/chain life. I'm not sure whether this will be such a problem in your case, as you're using a triple chainset, so you can have a nicer chainline as opposed to my 1x mountain bike which has the chain contorted at a horrific angle in first gear.
by DevonDamo
28 Jul 2021, 10:35am
Forum: Touring & Expedition
Topic: Cycle trip south Devon
Replies: 12
Views: 278

Re: Cycle trip south Devon

alan dun wrote: 28 Jul 2021, 9:26amDoes anyone have any good tips/routes?
(Edit: totally revised my previous suggested routes as I hadn't spotted you were after 3 to 4 days.)

Here's what I'd do:

Day 1: Take the NCN 'tour de manche' route from Exeter to South Zeal. (South Zeal is an interesting Dartmoor village with an excellent pub - The Kings Arms - which often has good live music and might let you camp in their garden if you ask nicely.)

Day 2: 'Tour de Manche' then NCN27 routes via Okehampton to Tavistock. The Stannary Brewery in Tavistock has an excellent brewery tap with good food - only Friday/Saturday though.

Day 3: NCN27 from Tavistock to Plymouth. (If staying in Plymouth, there's 'Riverside' campsite or you can wild camp in the woods alongside the bike route. Be warned though - it's also a popular set of fast mountain bike trails, so avoid any noticeably worn ground when choosing a spot.)

Day 3 or Day 4: NCN2 from Plymouth to Totnes. (Both Plymouth and Totnes have plenty to see/do. The Dartington Estate has camping.)

Then get the train from Totnes to Exeter or wherever you're going.

One bullet-proof way to stick to the route is to download the Cyclestreets app onto your phone and get that to plot the quietest route (which in this case will be the NCN routes) between your start and end points. You can then either use it as a full sat nav, or just as a map which (when you press the location button) will show your position in relation to the route on the map.
by DevonDamo
26 Jul 2021, 12:58pm
Forum: Electric bikes
Topic: The perils of not buying from a authorised dealer maybe?
Replies: 9
Views: 387

Re: The perils of not buying from a authorised dealer maybe?

Even though it's from an established forum user, I didn't click on that link when I read the post because it doesn't look like a recognisable URL. I suspect that the issue here is just that they've cut/pasted a link from within their own forum profile which others don't have access to, but in these circumstances I'll always just leave it rather than look.
by DevonDamo
25 Jul 2021, 11:31am
Forum: Bikes & Bits – Technical section
Topic: Derailleur alignment tool recommendations?
Replies: 87
Views: 3492

Re: Derailleur alignment tool recommendations?

Northern_Monkey wrote: 25 Jul 2021, 10:11amWorth a punt on a Chinese eBay Park DAG-2.2 copy or using Bicycle Hero (ships Taiwan/US), open to other suggestions?
My experience is that the cheapo copies do the job. The only problem I've noticed with mine (http://www.superbiketool.com/prod4.asp? ... 17&pid=244) is that there can be some play in it, i.e. the long torque arm can angle in and out by a few millimetres, rather than being locked rigid to the thread in the dropout. For all I know, this could be the same on the expensive tools, and it's not bad enough to stop you from doing the job - you just take any range of play into account when deciding whether the tool is telling you the hanger is straight or not. I've used the tool to perfectly straighten a badly distorted hanger as well as to check the alignment on good bikes to rule that out as the cause of shifting problems.

Depending on what problems your bike has, you may also need a tool to check the alignment of the frame. This was a problem on a second-hand bike I bought which had obviously been crashed, so (thanks to Brucey) I made a little tool to get that checked and straightened before using the hanger alignment tool. It was just an old rear axle broken in half with some large washers and nuts to turn it into two 'pointers' to show that the holes in the frame were parallel and pointing towards each other. There's a YouTube video of a guy making one here, although his is a lot more elaborate than mine. Again, it did the job and I got the bike shifting faultlessly without too much effort: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tUVvtZmbhYQ
by DevonDamo
23 Jul 2021, 12:06pm
Forum: On the road
Topic: Cycle route apps that 'talk'
Replies: 27
Views: 660

Re: Cycle route apps that 'talk'

Always good to hear about updates to Cycle.travel - it's already a superb resource, even if you're only using the website version. However, someone has to say it: of all the possible features in a routing app, I'd have though the lowest priority for the OP would be speech.
by DevonDamo
21 Jul 2021, 4:37pm
Forum: Bikes & Bits – Technical section
Topic: Seat posts - that sinking feeling!
Replies: 31
Views: 831

Re: Seat posts - that sinking feeling!

pwa wrote: 21 Jul 2021, 4:16pm What would be really nice would be a protective grease that included fine sandy particles for grip. But I have never seen that for sale.
You can get it readily enough, e.g. Fenwicks (https://www.wiggle.co.uk/fenwicks-carbon-assembly-paste) or the aforementioned Park Tools stuff. Although these are marketed for use on carbon components, they still tick both your 'protective grease' and 'fine sandy particles' boxes. My very limited data sample (in-situ for 1 year on one set of ally components) suggests that toothpaste also ticks both those boxes.
by DevonDamo
20 Jul 2021, 12:44pm
Forum: Bikes & Bits – Technical section
Topic: Seat posts - that sinking feeling!
Replies: 31
Views: 831

Re: Seat posts - that sinking feeling!

Darkman wrote: 20 Jul 2021, 11:45amIn terms of seat post clamps, what is "stack height"?
In the context of a seat clamp, as opposed to a dropper post, stack height is just how tall it is. I.e. lay that Hope clamp down flat on a table and it will be 17mm tall

Update on my Colgate assembly paste: just pulled the seatpost out and it slid out like it was greased-up with some proper posh stuff, no sign of corrosion and after all this time it's still minty-fresh. So the toothpaste trick seems to work and might be a useful tip for anyone doing bike maintenance on tour. There are a few applications where assembly paste is advised, e.g. clamping your stem onto your steerer or your bars, especially when there's carbon involved - toothpaste is cheap and readily available.
by DevonDamo
20 Jul 2021, 10:59am
Forum: Bikes & Bits – Technical section
Topic: Seat posts - that sinking feeling!
Replies: 31
Views: 831

Re: Seat posts - that sinking feeling!

Darkman wrote: 20 Jul 2021, 10:53am You know what? I considered that exact solution myself last night, then thought "nah, don't be so bloody stupid"!
Haha! The only unknown in my mind is whether it will have any problems in terms of corrosion - I have zero understanding of metallurgy or the PH of toothpaste etc. so I genuinely don't know. Mine's been on there untouched for the best part of a year now so I'll go and check whether my seatpost is now welded-on when I'm next out in the garage and report back...
by DevonDamo
20 Jul 2021, 10:26am
Forum: Bikes & Bits – Technical section
Topic: Seat posts - that sinking feeling!
Replies: 31
Views: 831

Re: Seat posts - that sinking feeling!

I've been resisting the urge to contribute this as I know it won't be received well, but I've finally cracked...

The seat on my hybrid started doing the same thing last year - i.e. it seemed to be locked, but during a ride it would work its way down. The seatpost and frame are both ally, and the seatpost had developed a glassy smooth polished surface. I've owned the bike for several years and this was the first time this had happened so I'm assuming I'd either got some grease on the post and/or the surface of the post had become too polished from use.

I'd tried scrupulously cleaning the post, but it still did it. Then a mate told me that toothpaste works in exactly the same way as carbon frame assembly paste. I thought it couldn't hurt to try and.... still working fine to this day after a tiny smear of Colgate.
by DevonDamo
19 Jul 2021, 1:41pm
Forum: Does anyone know … ?
Topic: Folder for tall people
Replies: 17
Views: 701

Re: Folder for tall people

I'm tall and used to own a 'Bromptonesque' folder. (A Dahon Ciao - nowhere near as posh and foldy, but in vaguely the same ballpark in terms of form-factor.) I managed to snap my frame by over-extending the seatpost. Using a telescopic seatpost would have prevented this, and I eventually repaired the frame (another story, and if I explained how, that would derail your thread) and made my own telescopic seatpost, which worked. However, from my experience I just don't think small-wheeled bikes suit tall people - you look and feel weird. I also found the clamping system for the folding frame kept breaking, and I also put this down to the extreme leverage my lanky frame was putting on the bike.

I'd therefore recommend looking for a folder with bigger wheels/frame for your son. Two examples of which you might look at are

(1) the Rudge/Montague bi-frame. See this thread for detailed discussion. They come up on eBay etc, but remember to buy the large frame option. viewtopic.php?f=5&t=68084 I've got one and it's exactly like riding a normal bike - no wobbliness from the frame.

(2) The Ritchey Breakaway system, which allows a normal frame to be dismantled. Here's a posh brand new, ready-made one, but you can also buy the fittings and convert an existing bike. https://eu.ritcheylogic.com/eu_en/bike/ ... d-frameset

Neither of these options are anywhere near as compact as a Brompton, but if he's just wanting something that's easy to get into a flat, then they might be fit for that purpose and a hell of a lot cheaper.
by DevonDamo
9 Jul 2021, 11:20pm
Forum: Bikes & Bits – Technical section
Topic: Bike designs which should be binned
Replies: 353
Views: 13529

Re: Bike designs which should be binned

jb wrote: 9 Jul 2021, 1:00pm I've ridden stoney tracks with my fingers on the rear shock and it doesn't seem to react in time with bumps. It's fine on bigger stuff as my back can testify (which is the reason I went full suspension) but small bumps - I remain to be convinced.
It's technically no problem for a shock to react instantly to small bumps because they're set up to be already working as soon as you sit on the bike - that's what setting the 'sag' is all about, i.e. having the shock already approx. 30% through its travel so it can extend or compress from the off. So the 'air spring' is already doing its thing as soon as you're sitting on the bike and the only reason it might not move in time with the bumps is because the compression damping and rebound damping will be doing their jobs. For most riders, having the shock just move in time with every bump the bike hits would not be desirable.

Most forks/shocks only have 'low speed' compression damping adjustment because that's good enough for mere mortals. However, you can buy high-end stuff for megabucks which has separate adjustment for the high-speed compression damping, which is what you'd need to fiddle with to change how it reacts to small, quick bumps like stones and tree roots. However, if you set it up so you could actually feel your shock moving with your hand when you hit small stones, I bet you'd very soon want it put back the way it was. (You'd either be kangarooing or during a bumpy section, you'd find your forks/shocks had bottomed out and you had no suspension left.)

The reason why the aforementioned 'lefty' fork is designed that way isn't about saving weight. It's so that both the air spring and the various damping systems are installed into one unit, rather than spring in left fork, damping in right, like most forks. According to user reviews, this makes it much more responsive and capable. However, as is often the case with exotica like this, it's a pointless expense for an average rider like me as my low skill levels mean that I'd never be doing anything that would give it a chance to shine.
by DevonDamo
7 Jul 2021, 2:44pm
Forum: Bikes & Bits – Technical section
Topic: Flat Pedals vs Clipless
Replies: 51
Views: 1936

Re: Flat Pedals vs Clipless

Paulatic wrote: 7 Jul 2021, 12:34pmWellies all day long,
Heretic! Burn him!
by DevonDamo
7 Jul 2021, 11:50am
Forum: Bikes & Bits – Technical section
Topic: Flat Pedals vs Clipless
Replies: 51
Views: 1936

Re: Flat Pedals vs Clipless

Paulatic wrote: 7 Jul 2021, 8:51am I’ve never bashed a shin since a child either. I assume those who keep trotting it out as a 'thing' do actually do it and it’s not an urban myth.
Yep, 'getting shinned' is a real thing as the cuts on my right shin currently testify. However, I don't believe it's a risk when you're riding normally - you're only going to come off your pedals like that when you're doing something particularly dynamic, and even then it usually only happens when you're learning (E.g. trying to learn high bunny hops is what's bitten me a couple of times recently.) It's really not as bad as its made out to be though - I could wear shin pads whilst I'm practicing tricks, but the consequences of getting shinned just aren't bad enough for me to bother.

Debating whether clipless or flats/pins are better is a bit futile though - a bit like trying to decide whether Wellies or ice skates are the best footwear.