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Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 30 Mar 2018, 2:20pm
by cycleruk
Mentioned in another topic, and thinking it more prudent than rather reply there, so I would do a separate post.

hercule wrote:
"There is a handling issue that I've never really got to grips with, namely that on steep climbs its very difficult to keep the front wheel on the ground, which does nothing for my confidence."

The technique for stopping the front wheel lifting on steep gradiants - lower your elbows so that the forearms are parallel with the ground.
Obviously this causes you to bend forwards but has the effect that you pull back on the bars rather than lifting them if you stay upright.
Naturally, on a steep section, sitting upright, you will pull on the bars to get more force into your legs but then this encourages the front to lift.

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 30 Mar 2018, 2:31pm
by reohn2
Front wheel lifting when climbing steep hills could also be caused by short chainstays(26in wheels and tight clearances),long thighs necessitating greater saddle layback,short front centres and or a short stem.
One or all of these things won't help as they put most weight over the rear wheel and in doing so lighten the front end :?
To add to Cyleruk's post ,thinking "round and even" when pedalling will also help

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 30 Mar 2018, 5:35pm
by LinusR
Also riding in a very low gear will tend to lift the front wheel. Lean forward and pedal smoothly the hardest gear you can manage.

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 30 Mar 2018, 10:23pm
by hercule
Tried them all but it still happens!

The bike in question (a GT Avalanche) has particularly short chain stays, but also owing to a dodgy neck there are limits to how low I can lean over the bars. There's a section of road round here which almost invariably causes the wheel to come up, yet I can ride up it on all my other bikes without any problems, so I suspect it is something specific to the machine.

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 30 Mar 2018, 10:33pm
by reohn2
Check the geometry of the Cannondale your thinking of buying against your GT.
The Genesis Longitude is particularly well behaved climbing :)

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 30 Mar 2018, 11:30pm
by freeflow
You need even smaller gear inches to minimise the torque you apply which is causing the front wheel to lift. You'll just have to accept pedalling at 100 rpm with a 15 inch gear to gobuphill at just over 2mph <big tongue in cheek grin>

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 1 Apr 2018, 4:24pm
by hercule
freeflow wrote:You need even smaller gear inches to minimise the torque you apply which is causing the front wheel to lift. You'll just have to accept pedalling at 100 rpm with a 15 inch gear to gobuphill at just over 2mph <big tongue in cheek grin>


This opens another can of beans... despite spinning happily at 100 rpm in medium gears (say 50"+) I really struggle to spin in low gears and seem only to be able to maintain 60-70 rpm. That's even on my recumbent trike, where there's no risk of falling off. Maximum cadence seems to be proportional to gear inches, in my experience (or maybe that's just me). At the other end of the spectrum I've hit 140 rpm descending a local hill in top gear on the trike (that got me up to about 40mph, I think)

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 1 Apr 2018, 7:53pm
by MikeDee
Maybe your saddle is too far back.


I'm a trendy consumer. Just look at my stupid phone. Pro

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 9 May 2018, 9:16pm
by Username
LinusR wrote:Also riding in a very low gear will tend to lift the front wheel. Lean forward and pedal smoothly the hardest gear you can manage.


In a harder gear you will have to push the pedals harder, so there will ultimately be the same amount of torque in the rear wheel. Shifting your weight forward and being as smooth as possible with the pedalling is the best bet. If a hill is that steep there will always be a battle to keep the front wheel down.

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 9 May 2018, 11:46pm
by PDQ Mobile
Username wrote:
LinusR wrote:Also riding in a very low gear will tend to lift the front wheel. Lean forward and pedal smoothly the hardest gear you can manage.


In a harder gear you will have to push the pedals harder, so there will ultimately be the same amount of torque in the rear wheel. Shifting your weight forward and being as smooth as possible with the pedalling is the best bet. If a hill is that steep there will always be a battle to keep the front wheel down.


Except on a recumbent! It's not usually an issue.
Though balancing requires practice.

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 10 May 2018, 10:01am
by reohn2
PDQ Mobile wrote:
Username wrote:
LinusR wrote:Also riding in a very low gear will tend to lift the front wheel. Lean forward and pedal smoothly the hardest gear you can manage.


In a harder gear you will have to push the pedals harder, so there will ultimately be the same amount of torque in the rear wheel. Shifting your weight forward and being as smooth as possible with the pedalling is the best bet. If a hill is that steep there will always be a battle to keep the front wheel down.


Except on a recumbent! It's not usually an issue.
Though balancing requires practice.

Depends on the recumbent :wink:

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 10 May 2018, 12:45pm
by PDQ Mobile
reohn2 wrote:
PDQ Mobile wrote:
Except on a recumbent! It's not usually an issue.
Though balancing requires practice.

Depends on the recumbent :wink:


Maybe but not on the couple I have owned.

Or did you mean the balancing. :wink:

Re: Lifting front wheel.

Posted: 10 May 2018, 4:48pm
by gaz
freeflow wrote:You'll just have to accept pedalling at 100 rpm with a 15 inch gear to gobuphill at just over 2mph <big tongue in cheek grin>

At that cadence you'd need a 7" gear to go up hill at just over 2mph :wink: .