New model or old faithful?

For discussions about bikes and equipment.
Harptree
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Joined: 3 Jun 2016, 7:38am

Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby Harptree » 28 Aug 2018, 7:48pm

I'm glad I asked the question now - lots of useful advice and different viewpoints and experiences on here that I wasn't expecting and that have cheered me up immensely and given me some sensible perspective.

Many thanks all!

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Xilter
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Location: Guildford

Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby Xilter » 28 Aug 2018, 9:04pm

You have already invested in making old faithful better suited to you.
I’m with everyone else. Get it serviced. Some upgrades to look at would be keeping the braking surface on your wheels clean followed by better brake pads. Some better tyres.

A better bike won’t make YOU better. You want to improve. you don’t need a top bike to do that. All you need to improve, is a starting point and a bike. You have that. Remember Cycling is hard work. And your not racing. Keep at it and you will get better. But it’s not all about being fast.
My poor poor bottom

Barks
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Joined: 14 Oct 2016, 5:27pm

Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby Barks » 28 Aug 2018, 9:46pm

Carry on using your old bike - you will still get fitter the more you use it. Spending lots of money on a snazzy bike is a waste of time unless you want to be able to boast how far/fast you have just gone to your mates.

Harptree
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Joined: 3 Jun 2016, 7:38am

Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby Harptree » 29 Aug 2018, 2:54pm

Hi - It came with Continental Tour Ride tyres - I think it has been someone's touring bike in the past - and I'm quite keen on them because they haven't had a puncture yet and I do like to nip on the odd bridleway round here. I thought they were quite good tyres, but do they make it harder to pedal?

mig
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Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby mig » 29 Aug 2018, 3:05pm

“Don’t buy upgrades, ride upgrades” – Eddy Merckx

enjoy the bike!

random37
Posts: 1952
Joined: 19 Sep 2008, 4:41pm

Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby random37 » 29 Aug 2018, 3:24pm

Harptree wrote:Hi - It came with Continental Tour Ride tyres - I think it has been someone's touring bike in the past - and I'm quite keen on them because they haven't had a puncture yet and I do like to nip on the odd bridleway round here. I thought they were quite good tyres, but do they make it harder to pedal?


No. Some fool is about to chime in and say yes, and they'll probably be right. But for you, not really (yet).

Honestly, save your money, and don't fix what isn't broken. Just replace things when they wear out.

Brucey
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Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby Brucey » 29 Aug 2018, 3:56pm

I am that fool; those are rather slow tyres that are not that nice to ride on. I much prefer to ride on better (faster rolling, more comfortable) tyres than those, but then I don't mind fixing the occasional puncture either. Horses for courses....

cheers
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

slowster
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Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby slowster » 29 Aug 2018, 4:26pm

random37 wrote:Honestly, save your money, and don't fix what isn't broken. Just replace things when they wear out.

In general I would agree, but as you ride more often and gradually build up distances and fitness, you might feel that there are some specific things about the bike which you don't quite like or think could/should be better. Sometimes you will be right, and sometimes you will be wrong, and it may be that the only way for you to decide and satisfy yourself will be to change it, and if necessary change it back.

This might be very slight changes to your position, e.g. raising or lowering the handlebars. It might be changing one small component, such as the brake blocks as previously mentioned (Kool Stop Salmon are reckoned to be a good wet and dry weather brake block).

If you keep riding and building up your stamina to go a bit further each month, I expect that at some point you will find you no longer like your squishy saddle, and will want to change that. Whilst squishy saddles may suit people who ride only short distances, they generally become uncomfortable as you ride further and your body (or rather a particular bit of it) adapts.

You mention being too scared to use your SPD pedals and shoes. Clipless pedals certainly are the right answer sometimes, but I would suggest instead that for now you consider trying some half toe clips and/or some some large plastic toe clips with the straps very loose (as Grarea mentions). The advantage of these is that they will help your feet to maintain their position on the pedal, and so make it easier for you to pedal at a higher cadence. A big difference between 'cyclists' and 'people who ride a bike' is that cyclists tend to pedal faster without consciously trying to do so: part of getting fit on a bike is that the body tends to gravitate to a higher cadence. For a given speed a higher cadence is easier and more comfortable for most of us to maintain than constantly pushing a high gear.

A particular advantage of such plastic toe clips is that they are less likely to mark or scuff your shoes, and you can use them with any shoes. There is a knack to flipping the pedal when starting off to get the side with the toe clip uppermost, but most usually get the hang of it very quickly, and if you fumble the flip at first you simply pedal briefly with the toe clip upside down until you are ready to have a go again at flipping the pedal.

https://www.tredz.co.uk/.Zefal-Toe-Clip-43-515-Strap-Set_50815.htm

https://www.tredz.co.uk/.Zefal-Half-Toe-Clips-45_69850.htm

NB Toe clips require that the pedal is compatible, i.e. a cage type pedal to which the toe clip can be bolted, as opposed to, say, a rubber pedal or a flat MTB pedal, e.g.

https://www.tredz.co.uk/.MKS-MT-Lux-Comp-Alloy-Cage-Pedals_18204.htm

If you wear an extremely soft soled shoe (they are not generally a good choice for cycling), the edges of the pedal cage can dig into the sole and be uncomfortable, in which case a platform style pedal which is still compatible with toe clips might be better:

https://www.tredz.co.uk/.MKS-GR9-Road-Cage-Pedals_18208.htm
Last edited by slowster on 29 Aug 2018, 5:17pm, edited 1 time in total.

Vorpal
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Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby Vorpal » 29 Aug 2018, 5:09pm

Harptree wrote:Hi - It came with Continental Tour Ride tyres - I think it has been someone's touring bike in the past - and I'm quite keen on them because they haven't had a puncture yet and I do like to nip on the odd bridleway round here. I thought they were quite good tyres, but do they make it harder to pedal?

Those are ok. I have them on one of my bikes. I probably won't buy them again, but I don't think they are bad enough to bother replacing.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

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531colin
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Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby 531colin » 29 Aug 2018, 7:34pm

I don't understand peoples' aversion to SPD pedals.
Put simply, they are the biggest single advance in my cycling lifetime, and I'm 71 now.
If they don't work, or are unsafe, how come so many of us use them? Or are we all deluded?
Piece of advice....find somebody locally who will swap your new cleats for some part-worn ones; part-worn cleats release so much easier from the pedals, even brand new pedals. If you can't find anybody locally, send me a PM and I'll swap you a set by post. (provided you have the 2-bolt MTB cleats). I have done this with several new cyclists in my club, all successfully riding SPDs now.
To set your cleats....you need the ball of your foot slightly in front of the pedal spindle; you need to have your feet at your own comfortable angle, which you can only find by riding (and my 2 feet are at different angles) There is some angular "float" in the pedals, you need to fit the cleats so that your foot is never up against the end of the float, ie. you can always rotate your foot a bit both ways. Make sure you have set the tension on the pedals to its lowest value.
Read my DIY bike-fitting guide (below)

slowster
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Joined: 7 Jul 2017, 10:37am

Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby slowster » 29 Aug 2018, 8:22pm

531colin wrote:I don't understand peoples' aversion to SPD pedals.
Put simply, they are the biggest single advance in my cycling lifetime, and I'm 71 now.
If they don't work, or are unsafe, how come so many of us use them? Or are we all deluded?

The OP is scared to use them, and for a novice it is understandable that the feel and thought of the feet being 'locked' to the pedals might be somewhat unnerving until they have used them for a while. They are not completely without any risk whatsoever: I think most of us who use clipless pedals will have had a stationary fall at some point where for whatever reason we are caught out by surprise and fail to unclip in time, and slowly keel over in slow motion comedy fashion. A novice in their 60s does not have the benefit of having learned to use them when they were much younger. Most older riders were already used to using toe clips when they switched to clipless, and that probably made it much less of a transition.

In a similar fashion, whilst the OP could persevere with them and would doubtless soon get the hang of them, she might find it easier to begin with by using toe clips or half toe clips, and then switch to clipless.

Personally I think clipless pedals are great and I have them on most bikes, but this year the bike I've ridden most is a 30 year old tourer with downtube friction levers and toe clips (often combined with sandals), and I've enjoyed every minute of it.

random37
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Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby random37 » 29 Aug 2018, 9:02pm

Brucey wrote:I am that fool


I'm saying nothing. You and I both know there are better tyres for that use case. However, Harptree's current ones are fit for purpose. They are safe, and they work.

Harptree, there is nothing that you can upgrade that will make the bike feel significantly easier to ride.

Get it serviced, and accept that next year you may be due an upgrade, if you are still enjoying your cycling.

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hondated
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Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby hondated » 29 Aug 2018, 9:08pm

Really cannot add to all of the positive comments you have already received so all I will say is " well done you ". :D Going to take my grandsons to a local mountain bike park and hire some bikes and I suggested my wife might like to join us and her comment was "what I am 68 " :wink: and my reply was " I am only a year younger " so it really is down to how you perceive yourself and your capabilities. :)

Brucey
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Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby Brucey » 29 Aug 2018, 9:14pm

random37 wrote:....Harptree, there is nothing that you can upgrade that will make the bike feel significantly easier to ride....


Disagree; those tyres would go straight in the bin. They will cost you a significant amount of speed, all the time.

cheers
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

random37
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Re: New model or old faithful?

Postby random37 » 29 Aug 2018, 9:30pm

Brucey wrote:
random37 wrote:....Harptree, there is nothing that you can upgrade that will make the bike feel significantly easier to ride....


Disagree; those tyres would go straight in the bin. They will cost you a significant amount of speed, all the time.

cheers


You're objectively correct, but it isn't a race. You're missing the bit that will actually get people enjoying the activity of cycling.

Harptree, I would urge you to stop worrying about technical details and get out there. Ditch the cycle computer, and the smart phone.

There are better choices if you need new tyres, but don't upgrade specially.