Road bicycling | The Boneyard

Road bicycling

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Just scored this 2010 Giant Defy 3 road bike for free! I’m still banging around on my Trek 3700 (did 100 miles a few years ago on the mountain bike) and ‘86 Diamond BMX. New to road biking, welcome anyones feedback.
 

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87Xfer

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The old school thinking that narrower tires at really high PSI are better or faster has been debunked. Go with the widest ones your brakes and frame can accommodate, at more modest tire pressures and you'll be happier.
 
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Interested to hear if you enjoy road biking. I became obsessed with MTB a little over a year ago, but I have never had even remote interest in road biking. I used to commute on my bike, so it's not like I never tried it.
 
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Proper fit is the most important thing - assuming its the right size, look for a shop that will fit it for you.

Take the cages off and ride with platform pedals until you get used to how it handles. Then consider going clip less.

Be visible.

Never pass a car to its right if you are coming up on an intersection or side street. (for many it seems that turn signals are optional) If you're going fast, be aware that cars making a left turn will often misjudge your speed figuring you are "just a bicycle" and may turn in front of you.

This is a useful site: Bike Forums
 
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i have a hybrid bike but would highly recommend either the Empire State Trail (if you are close enough to NY) or some of the similar style trails in CT like Farmington Canal Heritage Trail. Miles of paved trail going through quaint NY/CT towns. A few spots will cross roads and stuff so you have to be careful but yeah great ride in the fall.

 

ClifSpliffy

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change the bar to a flat one, mebbe add spike horns to the ends for riding comfort.
my entire life i've been seemingly surrounded by 'bike nuts' and their endless talk aboot clothing, pedal clips, carbon this or that, 25 or 50 mile rides, average speeds, blah, blah, blah, and then they actually ride like only every week, or three.
i say hop on ur steed every day or so, tool around with ur headphones on for a mile or three, and reap the real magic that riding is - a workout for ur brain and it's fundamental need to be exercised in balance training.
forget any stationary bike in that regard.
the fresh air, sights, and fun aren't bad either.
talking with a formerly full bikenut pal recently ('more equipment! more equipment! u don't get it cuz u don't train for the big one! the special shirt!' and so on), who lives in the Denver, he became noticeably angry when i mentioned 'whaddaya mean, you don't ride when it's below 30?- u ain't gonna die.'
he's a wash park rider. always the same place. in a circle. boring.
('bbut i did 20 miles in x minutes at y speed!')
when cycling becomes work, or a deadline, or anything else that can put ur mind at upset for not 'accomplishing' some arbitrary goal, then ur doing it wrong. fun, and balance training, are the magic and the purpose.
sweet ride u got there.
i ride mostly on my local streets, same as i did in Boston, DC, Manhattan, Virginia, Houston, SF, LA, ..... i really enjoy the part with 'hey clif! whats up?.... when they sometimes say 'u gotta minute?' i know that somethings coming requiring extra hands. oh well. i like people.
 
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Agree about the wider tires if possible- more comfort and no speed penalty.
Looking at the pictures, the seat looks kind of low. Is the bike the right size for you? Always heard when you are at the bottom of the pedaling cycle, there should be a small bend to knee.
 
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change the bar to a flat one, mebbe add spike horns to the ends for riding comfort.
my entire life i've been seemingly surrounded by 'bike nuts' and their endless talk aboot clothing, pedal clips, carbon this or that, 25 or 50 mile rides, average speeds, blah, blah, blah, and then they actually ride like only every week, or three.
i say hop on ur steed every day or so, tool around with ur headphones on for a mile or three, and reap the real magic that riding is - a workout for ur brain and it's fundamental need to be exercised in balance training.
forget any stationary bike in that regard.
the fresh air, sights, and fun aren't bad either.
talking with a formerly full bikenut pal recently ('more equipment! more equipment! u don't get it cuz u don't train for the big one! the special shirt!' and so on), who lives in the Denver, he became noticeably angry when i mentioned 'whaddaya mean, you don't ride when it's below 30?- u ain't gonna die.'
he's a wash park rider. always the same place. in a circle. boring.
('bbut i did 20 miles in x minutes at y speed!')
when cycling becomes work, or a deadline, or anything else that can put ur mind at upset for not 'accomplishing' some arbitrary goal, then ur doing it wrong. fun, and balance training, are the magic and the purpose.
sweet ride u got there.
i ride mostly on my local streets, same as i did in Boston, DC, Manhattan, Virginia, Houston, SF, LA, ..... i really enjoy the part with 'hey clif! whats up?.... when they sometimes say 'u gotta minute?' i know that somethings coming requiring extra hands. oh well. i like people.
Actually, he did 20 miles in x minutes at (20 / (x / 60)) speed (in mph). Not that what you wrote is wrong; it just has an unnecessary variable.

Just saying.
 

Fishy

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Don’t change the pedals to flats and definitely do not swap the bars for flat bars. Riding on the hoods is far more comfortable with that bike’s geometry than you would get with bar ends.

I actually have a Giant Defy, but it’s one of the Advanceds. It’s kind of a rain bike now, but originally, even the high end models came with 25mm tires. I can check, but it’s pretty tight, so not sure anything wider is going in there.
 
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Don’t change the pedals to flats
Wasn’t suggesting changing out the pedals completely- just removing the cages from the existing pedals to start out. Figure not having to get your foot out of the cage when you stop is one less thing that can go wrong.

Did you give that advice based on the possibility of a possibly wider replacement pedal bottoming out when pedaling through a turn, or just believe that the cages will provide a better experience for a beginner?
 
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I put together my own bike 10 years ago, and have only added new components to it in the last decade, but the best purchase I made was a Brooks seat with a spring. I had the fast guys around here explain to me it would slow me down, but when I asked how much, I would average 19.5 mph instead of 20. My butt thanks me and so does my back though.

Pricey but worth it: Flyer Carved
 
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I used to ride to and from the office in NYC long before there was bike lanes some things I learned:

1) Flat bar with extensions
2) No clips
3) Wide tires
4) Comfortable saddle
5) Cars will always win, put the bike pride aside, people are, well, people
6) Doesn't need to be said, but will anyway - no earphones or at a very low volume if you use them on the street

Admittedly, I'm not sure I could ride in NYC like I used to, either my balls aren't as big or my brain has gotten bigger. But there are times I miss pushing down 5th avenue in rush hour to the office - did give a great boost in the AM.
 

Fishy

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Wasn’t suggesting changing out the pedals completely- just removing the cages from the existing pedals to start out. Figure not having to get your foot out of the cage when you stop is one less thing that can go wrong.

Did you give that advice based on the possibility of a possibly wider replacement pedal bottoming out when pedaling through a turn, or just believe that the cages will provide a better experience for a beginner?

Partially. That’s a size L Defy which has 175mm crank arms. The clearance to the ground with a set of Look pedals is about 2.5”. A wider pedal would be a plainly bad idea.

Also, the dude is not a beginner…his handle is MTBingNinja.

It’d take him about three seconds to figure how to get into a clipless pedal if for some reason he has’t come across them in his mountain biking ninja’ing.
 

dvegas

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Was impossible to get most parts needed for a complete rebuild of my triathalon/road bike, a circa 2000 Cannondale 900R on March 16, 2020, so I spent $650 on a Giant Roam3 hybrid that day. Best pandemic move I made. When I picked up the bike a week later, the store had been stripped bare. Couldn't even get slick tires and caged pedals until spring 2021. Put bike stores up there with liquor stores and divorce attorneys as some of the biggest pandemic winners :p
 
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change the bar to a flat one, mebbe add spike horns to the ends for riding comfort.
my entire life i've been seemingly surrounded by 'bike nuts' and their endless talk aboot clothing, pedal clips, carbon this or that, 25 or 50 mile rides, average speeds, blah, blah, blah, and then they actually ride like only every week, or three.
i say hop on ur steed every day or so, tool around with ur headphones on for a mile or three, and reap the real magic that riding is - a workout for ur brain and it's fundamental need to be exercised in balance training.
forget any stationary bike in that regard.
the fresh air, sights, and fun aren't bad either.
talking with a formerly full bikenut pal recently ('more equipment! more equipment! u don't get it cuz u don't train for the big one! the special shirt!' and so on), who lives in the Denver, he became noticeably angry when i mentioned 'whaddaya mean, you don't ride when it's below 30?- u ain't gonna die.'
he's a wash park rider. always the same place. in a circle. boring.
('bbut i did 20 miles in x minutes at y speed!')
when cycling becomes work, or a deadline, or anything else that can put ur mind at upset for not 'accomplishing' some arbitrary goal, then ur doing it wrong. fun, and balance training, are the magic and the purpose.
sweet ride u got there.
i ride mostly on my local streets, same as i did in Boston, DC, Manhattan, Virginia, Houston, SF, LA, ..... i really enjoy the part with 'hey clif! whats up?.... when they sometimes say 'u gotta minute?' i know that somethings coming requiring extra hands. oh well. i like people.
Sharing some thoughts when I did bike riding and didn't have the shoulder problems I currently have that limit my doing so.

I would NOT recommend riding with headphones.

Here is why. You will not be able to hear cars behind you and sometimes they get uncomfortably behind you and the better course of wisdom is to pull more to the right if you can. Yes, having and looking at the side mirror helps to view the situation that you hear from not listening to music on headphones when you are riding.

Even on the Canal Line or any linear trails where there are no motor vehicles, , I would not recommend them because you cannot hear rollerbladers behind you who may be talking to each other and not really paying attention.

Hearing them has caused me to then look at the mirror to see if they are not paying attention. Obviously, I don't want to get rearended by them.

Being fitted with Kevlar tires reduces the chance of a flat tire or of a blowout.
 
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For the more advanced people I love the Garmin tail light that senses cars coming and beeps on your computer. There's also the aftershokz headphones where you don't have to put the buds in your ears and can hear the outside. Although listening to nature is always nice. I prefer to ride in the country but do have a couple routes in the city. I never ever go the main roads. Sure it's a right but you're risk levels go way up.
 

8893

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I would never consider wearing headphones while biking outside. Don't trust myself or other people enough. But I used to wear them religiously while running, until I read this piece recently:

The Case Against Running With Headphones (Published 2018)

In the past several weeks I've done the vast majority of my runs without headphones and have enjoyed it more for many of the reasons Sagal discusses.
 

ClifSpliffy

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first up, where i ride currently. my neighborhood, which is the vales, flats, and very rarely, the peaks in my coastal community. as far as busier byways, rt 1 is a breeze, tho 79, 81, and 145 for some reason have seemingly more knucklehead drivers, while 154 and 80 have mellower drivers, tho i don't cruise on that one much as the hills, especially around chatfield hollar, will kill ya. it's pre-colonial Connecticut, so there's always another way to get somewhere without big road hassles.
this may sound like i spend a good deal of time on those busy roads, but i don't. when not meeting up with pals, i mostly just ride around my immediate neighborhood, which offers 1 milers or 25 milers depending on my mood.
no helmet ever. tunes always. and even with a headphone or buds, but for a disco or rammstein beat on volume 10, i can hear your thoughts before you even say them. that nut trying to gun his ride and make all the lights on 23rd going from the hudson to the east river? i heard him before he left chelsea. just the way i was born. local 5-0 hunting at my home will tell you 'clif don't need no gun, he can just sneak up on them, and choke em down (don't hunt no more as i lost my taste for venison).'
no helmet (except for those places that make u wear one), and full tunes on the slopes as well. i seem to have a pretty good ability to avoid physical harm, but for a bball court or timber work, as im there at these places for safe fun, and not some silly attempt to be shaun white.
i have sooo many pals that were bumped by a car, or misread the train tracks, or curb, stoplight, or whatever (whattayou think could happen if you think 'screw it! im bombing this hill!' and you can't?). not me, tho i did stop, and open hand slap the hood of a knucklehead driver in kenmore square last spring. that guy blew away faster than a skeeter biting me a month or so ago.
when i first learned to drive, the advice that i got at the dinner table was, over and over, 'watch out for the other guy!' tru dat.
soooo, wear a helmet, don't wear a helmet. listen to beats, or don't listen to beats. whatever, it's a free country. to each his/her own. im almost never in a rush so pro tip: don't get caught behind cliffy's truck on rt 1 -he lets almost every vehicle in, and drives at an unhurried pace.
almost got hit by a car in tahrir square (circle?) years back. max glare until i realized 'wait, im not home. these people are nuts,' and the further away from the first world u get, the more u realize that there are no rules, only a sketchy law and order environment. no interest in being a dead hero.
on the udder hand, nothing like tooling around on a nice sunny day in February at hammy beach. the bikeshirted packs, whizzing around at high speeds on those flatlands, only come out when it's 55-80 degrees. 81 makes them melt away, and 54 turns them into freezepops.
my tunes source is a fantastic grundig am/fm/shortwave radio, with mindnumbingly good sound and reception in a very small size. holds up very well in wipeouts, too.
it's called 'grundig world traveller.' yup.
biking is fun. iffn u think it should be more than that, ur doing it wrong, and most likely, heading down another unsustainable path for your longterm health and well being. i really like those 80 years old cyclists, and i fully expect to be one if that time comes for me, and wearing tunes.
my daily driver is an older nishiki, with a fantastic seat, and 'should be fixed, someday' gearing. the brakes work great.
 
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For the more advanced people I love the Garmin tail light that senses cars coming and beeps on your computer. There's also the aftershokz headphones where you don't have to put the buds in your ears and can hear the outside. Although listening to nature is always nice. I prefer to ride in the country but do have a couple routes in the city. I never ever go the main roads. Sure it's a right but you're risk levels go way up.
After reading this post, I did some research on Aftershokz and ended up buying a pair. This could be a game changer. My current ear buds (JLab Epic Air Sport ANC) cause an allergic reaction in and on my ears, which is a huge bummer because I otherwise love the things. Good looks!
 
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Have to admit that until Fishy pointed it out, I didn't recognize the significance of your handle. If you're already a mountain bike ninja then the answer is clear. Become a road bike ninja. (not really)

 
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I would never consider wearing headphones while biking outside. Don't trust myself or other people enough. But I used to wear them religiously while running, until I read this piece recently:

The Case Against Running With Headphones (Published 2018)

In the past several weeks I've done the vast majority of my runs without headphones and have enjoyed it more for many of the reasons Sagal discusses.
When I ran, I hated head phones. Not for safety reasons, but running itself was pure pleasure when the circumstances were right (good weather, uncrowded roads, etc), and hearing anything through the head phones just took away from it.
 

Edward Sargent

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I just wiped out today on my Cannondale road bike. I was on the Pinellas Trail and passing three oldtimers and 2 dogwalkers when I had to take a wide berth around a dog on an extendo leash. I hit the lip at the edge of trail and right knee, elbow and hip are medium rare hamburger. I am 70 and my hands are arthritic to the point that more than 25 miles is just too painful and now this. Not sure yet where I am headed but road biking is not in my future.
 
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I had my 2001 Waterford rebuilt after I rode Seattle to Portland (210 miles, 1-day) in 2016. Only rode it once since the rebuild. Next spring, I'll get back on it.

0501181643b.jpg
 

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