need more comfort...

miniello84
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need more comfort...

Postby miniello84 » Wed Jul 25, 2018 9:20 pm

Hello everybody my first post here and i got a question for you Guru guys!
I got a shimano steps touting ebike. it has got alluminium fork and straight alluminium seatpost. tyres are schwalbe marathon supreme 40c(min psi 50) with pressure 45 front and 55 rear (as low as i could go before losing too much rolling).
my weight is 80 and usually i got a 4/5 kg bag on the rack. my everyday commuting despite is most on tarmac and bike trail is not really smooth so i like to improve a bit the level of comfort. budget 200!
my idea was
1) change tyres with schwalbe big ben or maybe 50c almotion/supreme
2) front suspension suntour nrx coil + seatpost suspension ncx.
what would you suggest?
thank you

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MattyK
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby MattyK » Wed Jul 25, 2018 9:50 pm

What do you define as discomfort? Where are you feeling the hurt? 40C tyres should be pretty plush on most roads and trails, and suspension probably won't help there either.

I guess the areas I'm thinking of are contact points - saddle, shorts, bars, grips, bar height/angle, feet, etc.

There's also a lot to be said for fitness - the stronger your legs, the more weight they will bear, taking load off your bum and wrists and giving you the ability to unweight your backside over bigger bumps

human909
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby human909 » Wed Jul 25, 2018 10:35 pm

Have a look at a more comfortable seat. Possible a sprung seat or a sprung seat post. Sprung seats are very good at taking out some of the harsh bumps on bumpy surfaces. Don't get suspension and your tyres are fine.

And like MattyK said. It is probably something you will get used to as you ride more and get fitter. Most of us ride bicycles with minimal cushioning and high pressure tyres. (And there are plenty of us on this forum that are heavier or started out riding at a much heavier weight.)

miniello84
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby miniello84 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 5:59 am

thank you for replying guys.
what I'm looking for is take off a bit that unpleasant vibration in my arms and at the low bottom when i drive over a bit of gravel or not very well paved area (my commuting is mostly along the m80 bike path in Melbourne).
my last roadie with carbon fork/seatpost was even a bit better with 100/110 psi!

i should probably even said that i drive well over the 25km/h speed limit assistance

HenryCharlie
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby HenryCharlie » Thu Jul 26, 2018 10:27 am

Have you looked at changing your handlebar grips and getting more padded gloves?
I overtook some people going uphill once.

human909
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby human909 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 11:03 am

miniello84 wrote:my last roadie with carbon fork/seatpost was even a bit better with 100/110 psi!

i should probably even said that i drive well over the 25km/h speed limit assistance

Sorry. I think there was a implicit assumption that because you were new, an ebike rider and mentioning comfort that you might have been a newer and less fit & experienced cyclist. By the sounds of thing you are probably fitter than me at the moment. :oops:

miniello84 wrote:thank you for replying guys.
what I'm looking for is take off a bit that unpleasant vibration in my arms and at the low bottom when i drive over a bit of gravel or not very well paved area (my commuting is mostly along the m80 bike path in Melbourne).

Are your arms too straight? You want some bend at the elbows...

I'm really only guessing here. I mostly ride without gloves or padded bike short or any of the creature comforts other people here use. I don't get discomfort so I can't really relate.

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Duck!
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby Duck! » Thu Jul 26, 2018 11:32 am

Two probable factors: the fork and the tyres.

Aluminium forks offer virtually nothing in the way of vibration damping. Steel, or carbon if you want to lash out, forks will both smooth out that fine vibration.

The Marathon family of tyres is built to be tough and robust. They might be 40mm wide which on paper says "comfy", but the reality is that they're pretty rigid & unforgiving. Lighter, more supple tyres will make a big difference, but the trade-off is that you may be slightly more prone to punctures.
I had a thought, but it got run over as it crossed my mind.

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Thoglette
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby Thoglette » Thu Jul 26, 2018 1:07 pm

human909 wrote:Have a look at a more comfortable seat. Possible a sprung seat or a sprung seat post. Sprung seats are very good at taking out some of the harsh bumps on bumpy surfaces.

This. A sprung Brooks or Brooks-a-like ($20 from you know where).

Duck! wrote:Lighter, more supple tyres will make a big difference,

And this.

Duck's point on the forks is also very valid. A straight aluminium fork is going to be very, very sucky. Replacing it with a traditionally shaped, properly made steel one is the best option as it will provide some flex. Even an old gas-pipe fork would be an improvement.
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miniello84
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby miniello84 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 3:07 pm

gosh guys you're amazing!!!
ok...
grips: already swapped the original with a couple of silicone/rubber small wing blabla comfortable enough.
fork: i would like to get a good one but (just cause i spent already a lot for the bike) for that one the budget shouldn't exceed 100/150 and anyway is just to reduce vibration, i don't drive on cross.
tyre: absolutely have to quote duck about the marathona...that why i was thinking about big ben or almotion but I'm afraid to loose too much rolling, coming from a road bike I'd like my ebike to be not a rocket but not even too slow.
anyway guys could my problem be the fact that i drive in average at speed of 30/35 instead of the 25 of a normal ebie!?

human909
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby human909 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 4:27 pm

As you correctly mention the shape of aluminium forks is the real influence, not the material. Aluminium is more flexible and dampens vibrations more than steel.

My road bike has a narrow tubed aluminium frame and fork and the bike is as smooth as butter. I have another bike with a modern hydroformed aluminum frame and carbon fork, it is stiff and harsh.

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10speedsemiracer
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby 10speedsemiracer » Thu Jul 26, 2018 4:37 pm

miniello84 wrote:Hello everybody my first post here and i got a question for you Guru guys!
I got a shimano steps touting ebike. it has got alluminium fork and straight alluminium seatpost....


Wondering if perhaps we could narrow down which bike you actually have, as the Shimano Steps system is used by everyone from Focus to Polygon.

But as Duck and others have suggested, may be better to approach this in stages. I would recommend perhaps some different tyres as a starting point :

Image

along the lines of these Maxxis Re-Volt in 47mm provided they fit. If these don't provide the degree of comfort being sought, perhaps a change of saddle. In any case, probably need a little more information, perhaps even a pic of the bike.,,(upload it to your Imgur account, and then paste the Imgur BBCode link here in a reply post).
Mmm, SunTour

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Thoglette
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby Thoglette » Thu Jul 26, 2018 4:43 pm

miniello84 wrote:anyway guys could my problem be the fact that i drive in average at speed of 30/35 instead of the 25 of a normal ebie!?

It will be when you have an accident and get your ass sued off for having an unlicenced motorbike. :shock:
Oh, that's you pedaling :D
No, that speed's irrelevant.
For the budget you have you need to change your tyres. And get a sprung saddle - cheap clone of a Brooks
Tyre choices off the top of my head
Maxxis re-fuse can be had in 40-622. Cheap, fairly supple
Panaracer Pasela up to 38-622. Better but not as cheap.
Not sure Conti have anything decent in 38 to 42 on 622 (or are you running 559 aka 26")
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BugsBunny
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby BugsBunny » Thu Jul 26, 2018 6:47 pm

Here are a few pointers. It depends what is the source of your discomfort:

Wide, supple tires.
Tire pressure. I err heavily on the side of lower is better.
Latex tubes - helps a bit... but controversial.
A saddle that fits your bum and is forgiving. Specialized Elastomer is a good one to look at.
Seat post suspension - Google Thudbuster. I had one a long time back and they work great.
Bib shorts.
Good handlebar grips. Try Ergon GP.
Padded gloves.
Bike fit.

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Duck!
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby Duck! » Thu Jul 26, 2018 6:56 pm

human909 wrote:As you correctly mention the shape of aluminium forks is the real influence, not the material. Aluminium is more flexible and dampens vibrations more than steel.

Sort of, but not quite.

Yes, in the most simplistic view aluminium is more flexible than stel. However, aluminium has two major caveats that need to be worked around, so the ultimate reality is quite different from the starting point.

The first point, that while more flexible, aluminium is considerably less springy than steel - it will reach the point where it satys bent at a much lower force input than steel. The second point is that aluminium is weakened every time it is bent. Therefore, to give an acceptable product life, aluminium components are shaped to minimise the effects of those two caveats, resulting in a component that is less flexible and compliant, therefore transmits more vibration.
I had a thought, but it got run over as it crossed my mind.

am50em
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby am50em » Thu Jul 26, 2018 7:10 pm

Schwalbe Marathon Supremes are lighter and much more supple than the other Marathon versions. But less puncture protection. And they roll well.

human909
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby human909 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:11 pm

Duck! wrote:Sort of, but not quite.

I think we are going to have to smile and disagree on this one. So I'll make this response to this off topic point my last.

Duck! wrote:Yes, in the most simplistic view aluminium is more flexible than stel.

It's also the material facts.

But the other half of the equation as we both recognise is shape.

Duck! wrote:However, aluminium has two major caveats that need to be worked around, so the ultimate reality is quite different from the starting point. The first point, that while more flexible, aluminium is considerably less springy than steel - it will reach the point where it satys bent at a much lower force input than steel. The second point is that aluminium is weakened every time it is bent. Therefore, to give an acceptable product life, aluminium components are shaped to minimise the effects of those two caveats, resulting in a component that is less flexible and compliant, therefore transmits more vibration.

Again we are back to simply how it is built and the shape chosen. My ALU road bike is coming close to 30 years old. Planes made from aluminum flex all day long close to 365 days a year. Gary Klein's quote here summarises things well.

I've got nothing against steel. I love steel bikes. But the mantra that aluminium is stiff and less flexible is misplaced. The stiffness depends on the geometry and the material. You can readily make a very stiff or very flexible alumimum bike, just like you can readily make a very stiff or flexible steel bike. You can even make a carbon bike heavier than a steel bike if you were so inclined.

Image

Extremely unscientific, but fun to watch:

eeksll
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby eeksll » Thu Jul 26, 2018 10:22 pm

I have a similar issue, I ride a flatbar with a 35c marathon on the front (green guard I think, the rock hard type) and a 40c marathon supreme on the back.

my commute is on a shared path which is more a path than a veloway, its fairly smooth but lots of bumps caused by tree roots.

Someone above has probably pointed out the main cause of the uncomfortableness ... I ride this bike when I want to sit arse heavy on the seat and just slowly spin in.

Added to that my panniers on the back continue the vibration after the bump (or atleast that is what I think is happening).

I'd also like a solution if one exists, I was thinking seat suspension, I don't have any issues on the hand side though.

not helping much except I don't think the marathon supremes will make a big difference.

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Thoglette
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Re: need more comfort...

Postby Thoglette » Sat Aug 04, 2018 6:50 pm

eeksll wrote:I'd also like a solution if one exists, I was thinking seat suspension,


Brooks Flyer or any of the cheap clones.
Image

eeksll wrote:except I don't think the marathon supremes will make a big difference.

I'll agree only to the degree that they're only a half way step to tyres that are actually comfortable. Suppleness is king. And watch your tyre pressures. Keep them as low as practicable.
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