Beating the system - the cycling commuting section
He already has a pretty short stem... I would almost go the other way: longer stem = straighter arm into the drops.
The Versa/Microshift levers have an awkwardly placed shift-release button from the drops. Not much you can do about it I've found. Try rotating the bars on the stem first, before you rip the bar tape off.
Bar tape is off and i will make some adjustments tonight. I think i need to get the emd of the bars back near parallel and then get the hoods set so i can still reach the shifters. I didnt just roll the bars as the hoods will be to far forward. I think the top tube is too long for the drops but oh well i think i will be able to get something close to right though. My ride home felt ok on the drops when sprinting. My seat feels a little far back now so moving this forward a bit might help also.
Dunno about the longer stem though....
I have readjusted the bars and this has put the bar ends back near parallel which has made the drops much more comfortable as my wrist angle is much straighter and i can reach the lever and shift buttons easier too. I also moved the hoods back up near level and it all feels good. The only other thing i will look at is sliding my seat forward a bit. By the knee over axle fit currently my knee is a bit behind the axle so i can prob go forward a bit and still maintain good position. I do find my current position very good for climbing though as i can really get my heels down. I dont know if this compromises my sprinting performance though but atm it feels ok but i do feel that i maybe have less power when in the drops and i thought this may be a result of being too far behind the pedal??
I will see what tomorrows ride brings
have ridden the bike this week and am happier by the day with it. the new position is a bit different to what i was used to so there are some new muscles im feeling. Particularly my hip flexors after sprinting in the drops, this may be because im not used to it or it may be a fit issue. This can be a sign of too acute of a hip angle from what i have read and is probably a result of the long top tube on the bike and slightly long reach. i have played around with a few things, namely shifting the saddle forward on the rails: this didnt really help as it ruined my position over the cranks and loaded up my quads too much so i shifted this back to where it was. I also raised the saddle height about 5-10mm but this stretched out my legs too much when pedalling and didnt really help my position at all so i put it back where i had it. this morning i dropped my saddle about 10mm and this seemed to feel much better for both riding in the hoods and on the drops. My legs extension is still good (knee bending at bottom of stroke in normal range) but i feel i can spin the pedals better rather than having to push up and down so much, possibly my seat was still a bit high all along.
Is dropping the seat height something that would be expected after going from a riser bar to drop bars especially with a long top tube length??
anyway the bike is starting to feel really good and im happy with the setup. One other thing i have noticed is that that brakes get very hot and the pads rattle in the calipers when going over any bumps which is a bit annoying as it is an up and down rattle rather than a result of not enough spring pressure. Im not sure how long my resin only rotors will last with the extra heat as the elixir 1s i had on didnt get anywhere near as hot. I have also noticed small cut in the right side hood rubber cover so im hoping these can be replaced down the track (i bought these second hand but supposedly unused).
Other than that there isnt much else to report. I have been taking it easy on the commutes this week after 3 weeks off and whilst getting used to the new bike. I have done some sprint sections and my times are slightly better but this could be a fresh legs result rather than any efficiency or drag improvements due to the bike. i will do a full week next week and see how my times compare. I think it may take a while to get accustomed to the new setup and riding position.
By the way, bike looks nice. Maybe a little different with such a short stem but overall I like
I'm no biomechanic, but I would guess that rotating your pelvis on the saddle is likely to move where (how high) your hip joint is, hence the need to readjust seat height accordingly. Whatever feels the best, it sounds like you can identify what works for you.
The basis of the Versa levers is actually Microtech, so you could probably approach them for new hoods if needed. Or here: http://www.hashtagbikes.com/product_p/br0550.htm
Good work mate. I love a good alfine drop conversion!
My only comment would be that the tyres make the bike look less stealth due to the protection layer colour. Go nuts with a laundry marker haha.
Specialized Secteur Expert
Kona Hei Hei DL
The bike has worked out well after commuting on it for a week and a half now im happy. I think it is more comfortable to ride now and the drops are a big advantage in the daily headwinds. My commute home yesterday was a pb on strava and i put in for the final sprint segment and got my best time with an average of 44km/hr for a 50 second effort, i also set a pb for another longer sprint section with a 39km average for a 2 min effort. I dont think the new bars are faster but the reduced drag in the drops does seem to help as the 38-40 speeds on the flat bar felt really fast but being down lower now and the sprints dont feel as fast as the wind isnt in my face as much.
i am still in seat and cleat fiddle mode trying to find the swet spot but im pretty close still. im trying to find the compromise between a sprinting position and still retaining the ability to climb. i find the position best for sprinting (seat forward more) really burns up my quads when climbing but moving the seat back help get my glutes engaged for climbing but feels like it restricts my cadence somehow when sprinting??? unfortunately i think the changes might be seat fore/aft, seat height and cleat position but this takes time as i dont want to change too many things at once.
the brakes are not as good as my elixir 1s. the hyrdos required less force and stopped better as well as were self adjusting. However the Spyres can lock up the wheels and stop the bike when needed they just need a harder squeeze. This was expected however and i have every confidence in the spyres after riding them this week. The pads are quiet although this morning the front did make some shudder like noises on full brake so not sure if the pads have dirt on them or something.
The versa shifters are excellent and the long pull on the downshift is not a problem. Shifts are fast both up and down the only issue is no gear indicator which i liked especially riding the same route each day meant i knew what gears i had to be in and where. the hoods feel good and are nice and chunky so there is something to hold onto. I can reach the shifters easily off the drops now they are set up right so this is another big plus. The fizik bar tape is excellent and went on (and off) easily and didnt tear after pressure.
overall i have no complaints and would recommend this conversion to anyone. the only negative is giving up hydro brakes but in future i expect this to be solved. i would certainly do this change again as the bike is much better and more interesting to ride with drops. All up the conversion cost me $500.
It's already possible (just more expensive) to have hydro brakes and hub gear. Either shimano Di2 shifters and the Di2 hub, or TRP Hylex brakes and a jtek bar end shifter (or possibly a retroshift shifter if they do one).
The Hylex got a rave review recently: http://road.cc/content/review/117844-pi ... cross-bike
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