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General Bike Thread (Desiderata, Questions, Pics)

Discussion in 'Health & Body' started by kronik, Apr 30, 2009.

  1. zippyh

    zippyh Senior member

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    I'm looking to start doing some upgrades on my Cannondale Synapse I got at the beginning of the Summer.

    First I'm looking at a new crankset and front derailleur. I currently have a Shimano Sora Triple derailleur and an FSA Vero crankset. I have no clue where to start and have been doing a little browsing on Jensen USA. Does more expensive necessarily mean a better part? Are there brands that I should stay away from or gravitate toward? What are the differences in sizes (do some perform differently or are there some that won't even fit my bike)?

    Is this even a good place to start for upgrades? My rear derailleur is a Tiagra, so I just figured I'd start upgrading the shittier parts first.



    Also I was thinking about upgrading to a carbon fiber front fork. After a quick browse I found this Bontrager Satellite Plus Fork on ebaye for cheap: http://cgi.ebay.com/Trek-Bontrager-C...#ht_500wt_1156

    The q&a section says it's from 2004. Does this make a difference? I think I'm going to jump on it, but wanted to get some input from others who might know the deal.

    Thanks!


    So why exactly do you want to upgrade your crank? Sure, a more expensive crank will probably be better but unless there's something wrong with your current one there's probably no reason to change. Also, unless you're searching ebay and online dealers for dirt cheap closeout parts, upgrading is really not cost effective. For example if you want to end up with say all Ultegra parts, you're much better off just buying an Ultegra bike. I'd put the upgrade money to savings for a new bike.

    Anyway, if you're set on upgrading your crank, I'd stay with Shimano and get some kind of compact double. Shimano shift smoothness really is superior. There's really not much reason to get a new FD unless it bugs you. I'd avoid FSA cranks but that's just because I had a bad experience with one that creaked like mad. In general they're probably fine.

    It's pretty easy to install the new crank assuming you're not also changing the bearing cups. Look at the instructions on the Park tools website. Make sure you use a torque wrench and grease the threads because it's going to creak if you don't.

    If you go to a double, you'll probably have to lower your FD and adjust the stops. Not too hard but kind of fiddly.

    If you're changing the bearing cups too, make sure you get the right tool. Park tools sells a socket for this. Don't get the wrench they sell because you'll just end up going back to get the socket.

    No way would I pay $80 for that fork.
     


  2. Kark

    Kark Active Member

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    Consider ditching the triple arrangement if you're replacing anyway. A compact double has a wide, usable gear spread if you wish to retain low gearing or just a standard double (53 big ring) if you don't live/ride in the mountains. Going to a double will require replacing the shifter also.

    I've never seen/known/used a road bike triple that shifted anywhere near as quickly and crisp as a double, and I don't know anyone who actually needs that much gearing. Unless you do fully loaded touring in mountains with 15+ percent grades and aren't in great shape or like to doddle up hills at 10km/h with a 90+ cadence you really don't need it.

    Is the existing fork aluminum? if so a carbon fork will quieten the ride and feel a bit less harsh so depending on the price and your pocketbook it may be very worthwhile.

    Leave the tiagra derrailleur on until it's worn out (a long time). Put the money into nice tires. Tires have no 'bling', but it'll make a bigger difference in how the bike rides. I'm fond of the michelin pro race tires. They square off fast but feel really plush and reasonably sticky in corners.
    Also big fan of vittoria open pave evo. Very sticky in the corners and nice ride also. I'm only on them a few months now so can't comment on how well they age. A pair of either will be in ballpark price of a derrailleur.

    Your other questions r/e brands and sizing are too general to make comment on.

    I'm looking to start doing some upgrades on my Cannondale Synapse I got at the beginning of the Summer.

    First I'm looking at a new crankset and front derailleur. I currently have a Shimano Sora Triple derailleur and an FSA Vero crankset. I have no clue where to start and have been doing a little browsing on Jensen USA. Does more expensive necessarily mean a better part? Are there brands that I should stay away from or gravitate toward? What are the differences in sizes (do some perform differently or are there some that won't even fit my bike)?

    Is this even a good place to start for upgrades? My rear derailleur is a Tiagra, so I just figured I'd start upgrading the shittier parts first.



    Also I was thinking about upgrading to a carbon fiber front fork. After a quick browse I found this Bontrager Satellite Plus Fork on ebaye for cheap: http://cgi.ebay.com/Trek-Bontrager-C...#ht_500wt_1156

    The q&a section says it's from 2004. Does this make a difference? I think I'm going to jump on it, but wanted to get some input from others who might know the deal.

    Thanks!
     


  3. zippyh

    zippyh Senior member

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    Going to a double will require replacing the shifter also.

    A shifter for a triple will work with a double too. Just set the limit screws properly.
     


  4. Cool The Kid

    Cool The Kid Senior member

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    If I utilize do HIIT running on a treadmill in the winter, will that help me get/stay conditioned to cycle during the spring? I realize they are two totally different movements, but I only have a fixed gear, so I'm not sure rollers would help, and I prefer running on a treadmill to riding on a stationary. Not looking to be pro or anything, just want to get a road bike and try some low level crits
     


  5. foreverly

    foreverly Active Member

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    If you're going to be racing Crits understand there is nothing 'Low Level' about them. It's hard racing even at the Cat 5 level. Depending on the course you'll be lucky to hang with the group on your 1st race.

    Certainly, you'll need more than a fixed gear bike....

    Most do base miles during the winter, then slowly ramp up interval training (aprox 90% max heart rate). But if you've been riding you don't really need to do the base miles, & can start interval training asap. & really the sooner the better if you are just beginning to race.

    Criteriums can be very dangerous. I've broken bones & have actually seen people die in one of my races. so don't go in thinking it's 'low level'... Sure its not the Tour or the Giro, but its still ultra competitive. & you are going to need to be prepared & be comfortable riding close to others in a large group/pack.
     


  6. Cool The Kid

    Cool The Kid Senior member

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    Gah... I've already had my big bike injury.... gonna pass on the crits, just ride to stay fit
     


  7. il ciclista

    il ciclista Senior member

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    get a cyclocross bike that way you can use it for darn near everything. They're good for commuting, off road, road cycling, modest distant riding, etc..and most can hold rack and larger tires.
     


  8. LawrenceMD

    LawrenceMD Senior member

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    get a cyclocross bike that way you can use it for darn near everything. They're good for commuting, off road, road cycling, modest distant riding, etc..and most can hold rack and larger tires.

    thats great advice. I kinda wished I just spent my money on a cyclocross bike that had braze ons for a rack and fenders after I bought my hybrid:

    [​IMG]

    I kept on tweaking the hybrid (added new lower bars and a longer stem) but realized that I was just trying to turn my bike into a cyclocross/road geometry bike.... lol

    so I just realized that its a great commuter (especially here in NYC) decided to leave it be and added a road bike instead of wasting time tweaking my hybrid/commuter.

    My vintage trek 5200 (circa 2000) USPS colors (totally stock with ultegra except for dura ace brifters!)

    [​IMG]
     


  9. il ciclista

    il ciclista Senior member

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    damn fine bikes one both occasions though! I am digging the USPS colors. [​IMG]
     


  10. LawrenceMD

    LawrenceMD Senior member

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    damn fine bikes one both occasions though! I am digging the USPS colors. [​IMG]

    the sad thing is... i'f i just spent $1000-$1500 on a entry level/low midlevel cyclocross bike I would have been better off - one bike for everything: commuting/road riding/light offroad/ect..

    where were you when I was buying a bike in the first place?![​IMG]
     


  11. Tim_Whatley

    Tim_Whatley Senior member

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    can anyone recommend a good trainer?
    priced less than 300
    nice and quiet
    don't need a ton of bells and whistles, just something that will let me peddle during the winter and still hear the TV without pissing off my neighbors.
     


  12. Kark

    Kark Active Member

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    can anyone recommend a good trainer?
    priced less than 300
    nice and quiet
    don't need a ton of bells and whistles, just something that will let me peddle during the winter and still hear the TV without pissing off my neighbors.


    Hunt down a used Kurt Kinetic road machine. no bells, no whistles. There is still noise, but it's much more muted than mag trainers. If you put the trainer and bike on those interlocking foam floor tiles (like for kids play areas) you'll decouple the acoustics from the floor (mostly) and transmit less sound to your neighbours.

    There's another brand thats very comparable to the kurt but I can't remember the name. Cyclops makes a good fluid trainer also.
     


  13. fffffut

    fffffut Senior member

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  14. otc

    otc Senior member

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    no ergo shifters and a backwards seatpost and messed up saddle angle? Not for $700

    Possibly stolen...or too old to be worth it
     


  15. bunnyoswaldo

    bunnyoswaldo Senior member

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    The problem with older used carbon fiber bikes is that they can develop stress fractures that unless you know where to look and what to look for you may not observe. Kestrels of that vintage had problems cracking at the chain stays. Its an area that gets a lot of dirt and grime so you really might not notice it. CF when it fails just shears w/o much warning. I have modest collection of older bikes and with the exception of a 3 year old Look 486 sl, they are all older steel framed rigs. I'd avoid really old used cf .....
     


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