The Black Beast returns

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Postby heavymetal » Mon Jan 28, 2008 6:48 pm

europa wrote:It's certainly worth looking at as a fine tuning exercise when I get the bars closer to the right height though ... or do you find it makes a dramatic difference?


I find it makes a small difference in much the same way as one puts one's seat slightly off centre.


europa wrote:It's a pity you can't loosen the neck and allow the bars to find their own place like you can a saddle.


I can :lol: I have a neck extender fitted, and also a centre pull canti mount which locks the neck in place.

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by BNA » Mon Jan 28, 2008 6:59 pm

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Postby mikeg » Mon Jan 28, 2008 6:59 pm

europa wrote:The front dr changed from middle to large okay, but on the middle restricts me to only the middle 7 cogs which is unacceptable on a bike being used this way - I guess I can ignore scraping dr cages for short periods, but it's still not what I'm used to.

Your used to the trim facility on front road STI shifters, yes?

The 9-speed Flat Bar shifters, SL-R440-9 also have the trim facility on the front shifter (LHS) The RHS flat bar shifter works with the Deore/LX/XT rear derailers.

The FD-R453-F flat bar front derailer is matched to the SL-R440-9, and is intended for 50 teeth big ring, whereas the FD-R443 is for the 52 teeth big ring.

I have not been able to find details or comparisons of actuation ratios (cable pull ratios) between MTB, FB and Road.


The old shifters work a treat, though only being able to go down one gear at a time kept catching me out at road crossings - I'm used to being able to go down two or three gears at a time and don't start changing down early enough. Apart from that though, the shifts were crisp and clean on the back (LX dr there) and quite acceptable on the front.


What type is the LX RD low-normal or high normal?

All my bikes have the low-normal type rear derailers, this mean that same levers on both sides perform the same function (thumb change to higher gear, and finger change to down to a lower gear). This allows me to click down multiple times and the spring will assist, and generally will complete the down change with about one pedal rotation.

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Postby Mulger bill » Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:49 pm

Deore MTB shifters, you should be able to downshift up to three cogs with one push of the lever, I know I used to. As regards the chain scraping the cage at each end of the block, live with it mate, there's no trimming on MTB shifters. Sorry.

Shame about the pain and numbness, but if it's happening so widely as the hamster and the smokebox, methinks it's an after effect from your collarbone injury, trial and error in setup may help.

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Postby Bnej » Mon Jan 28, 2008 9:15 pm

Mulger bill wrote:Deore MTB shifters, you should be able to downshift up to three cogs with one push of the lever, I know I used to. As regards the chain scraping the cage at each end of the block, live with it mate, there's no trimming on MTB shifters. Sorry.


I set mine up to have all the gears except the top one with no rub in the middle ring. I think the SRAM cages are a bit wider than the Deore ones.
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Postby europa » Mon Jan 28, 2008 10:17 pm

Bnej wrote:
Mulger bill wrote:Deore MTB shifters, you should be able to downshift up to three cogs with one push of the lever, I know I used to. As regards the chain scraping the cage at each end of the block, live with it mate, there's no trimming on MTB shifters. Sorry.


I set mine up to have all the gears except the top one with no rub in the middle ring. I think the SRAM cages are a bit wider than the Deore ones.


I think this is what I'll wind up doing. Let's face it, if you're on the tiny cog, you really need to be on the big ring anyway whereas if it's hilly and you're pulling a load, finding yourself on the large cog isn't inappropriate.

This does intrigue me about the mtb shifters though. I'd have thought that bashing through the bush was one place where you didn't want to have to pfaff about with chainrings, where conditions could change so quickly that having access to all 9 cogs would be an advantage. Still, I never claimed to be an off road specialist ... unless I've fallen off me roadie :oops:

I know what I want to do next. There may be some delay in doing it as I research all the numbers and options ... and try to justify spending the money. It is good to have the Black Beast back again, even if she is going to wind up too good to leave lying around at Uni.

The Sow's Ear? She'll be returned to her original setup and then will go to my neice to do her Uni commute on. The legend lives on :D

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Postby europa » Tue Jan 29, 2008 10:57 pm

Added the old stem extension to her today. Raised the bars about 2" above the saddle. Hitched up the dog trailer and took the mutt for a 20km ride while the lad was at soccer training.

Inside of 5km, my fingers were going numb :? Interestingly, it started in a different place to before (thumb this time). Also, it reached a point of 'numbness' that was really no worse than really bad pins and needles, then didn't get any worse. That's over a non-stop 20km ride.

I'm now forced to wonder if yesterday's ride, had it been done in one hit instead of broken in the middle, might not have produced a similar result ie, numb hands but only to a certain point.

So, raising the bars isn't the answer.
I was also interested to note that the vagueness in the steering I noted when I tried this with drop bars was there but, as expected, the wider mtb bars coped will with that.

I also noted that due to the short reach, it was difficult to ride with any appreciable bend in the elbows. It's also interesting to note that the most comfortable df bikes in the fleet stretch me out.

I am led to conclude that once the bars get to saddle height, reach is your friend, not height. Reach allows you to lean forward with a decent bend in your elbows and it's this bend combined with a flexible abdomen that reduces weight and stress on your hands and shoulders.

Once again, the fact that I was sold a frame that was too small has caused problems because the top tube is simply not long enough to provide me with adequate reach. Yes, I am fighting a physical problem, but that is simply serving to highlight the inadequacies of an overly short bike.

Yeah mate, I can see you sitting there nodding smugly. We proved all this with the Jamis didn't we.

In one respect, I'm glad tonight's experiment didn't work, because the old girl looks bloody awful with the stem extension.

The next step will be to remove the stem extension and to install my adjustable neck. This is a lot longer than the short neck I'm using. I'll use the adjustable feature to place the bars at saddle height and I'm guessing I'll gain about 3cm in reach.

I WILL still have problems with my hands, but I believe that unless the medical community can do something, the answer to that problem is the recumbent (with USS - rats, more expense for the conversion :D). However, with luck, I reckon I'll wind up with numb hands but not so bad I can't operate the controls, especially seeing the bike in this configuration won't be doing more than 30km in one trip.

That dreadful Bontrager saddle HAS to go :?

Oh, btw, the slick tyres and narrow rims on the trailer made a dramatic difference. It still slowed me down, but on the road, I really didn't notice the trailer behind me :D

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Postby Kalgrm » Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:12 pm

europa wrote:Oh, btw, the slick tyres and narrow rims on the trailer made a dramatic difference. It still slowed me down, but on the road, I really didn't notice the trailer behind me :D

Richard

That might not be such a good thing, considering the cargo it carries! :)

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Postby Mulger bill » Wed Jan 30, 2008 11:32 am

Yeah, slotting that narrow gap at speed...until the trailer gets there :shock:

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Postby europa » Wed Jan 30, 2008 11:38 am

Mulger bill wrote:Yeah, slotting that narrow gap at speed...until the trailer gets there :shock:

Shaun


BTDT

It was two wooden posts. I had to kick the trailer free :shock:

That was the day I decided I liked the clamp type of trailer hitch I've got - despite that shock, it didn't budge a bit :D

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Postby twowheels » Wed Jan 30, 2008 11:48 am

Hi Richard, I haven't been following the progress of your flat bar conversion too much, but noticed your concern with numbness caused by the flat bars. I'm also doing a flat bar conversion, just got it all together and now in the process of tweaking.
My hands don't give me as much trouble as you seem to be having. But I have noticed as I've been riding that the bars "turn in" in the horizontal axis toward me at the ends. Yet if I hold my hands out clenched they tend to turn out. I've got a "true" flat bar, ie no rise at all, so I'm going to give the bar a 180 degree rotate to see if that improves the comfort.
I notice from your photos that your bars have about a 5 cm rise, so either a rotation (within the stem) or flipping the bars (so they face backward) may appear a little strange. The flat bars I picked up for only $15 new, so may be worth a try for you. I'll let you know how my modification goes.
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Postby europa » Wed Jan 30, 2008 12:16 pm

I had dead straight bars on the Sow's Ear and they are horrible.

I set these by loosening them in the neck and then holding them, fiddling a bit with the angle until they felt comfortable. That doesn't mean they don't need more fiddling of course.

I like the Pro bar ends I've got because you can rest the heel of your hand on the tail, then have the front part of the bar end in the palm of your hand. I'm still fiddling with the angles there (and changing bar height changes the angle of course) but they are very good and completely remove the shape of the bars from the equation.

Keep us posted on your experiments please :D

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Postby sogood » Wed Jan 30, 2008 2:08 pm

europa wrote:Once again, the fact that I was sold a frame that was too small has caused problems because the top tube is simply not long enough to provide me with adequate reach.

Use a longer stem and/or seatpost with greater offset.

Sorting out the ride position on a small frame is far easier than a large frame.
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Postby heavymetal » Wed Jan 30, 2008 7:31 pm

europa wrote:because you can rest the heel of your hand on the tail


There is a nerve in the heel of the hand right in the middle that can get aggravated by doing this. While I found it relieved the dead fingers, it gave me a dead thumb. I also found that the pads in my gloves were compressing in the middle and causing problems.

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Postby thomas_cho » Wed Jan 30, 2008 9:53 pm

Anyone tried these?

http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Mode ... delID=9686

My hands are getting numb from the MTB, and I have been thinking abt trying these out. May not work for MTB riding, but they look like very comfortable grips ... and could be the solution to numb hands.
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Postby sogood » Wed Jan 30, 2008 10:13 pm

The nerve that goes through the middle of the wrist is the median nerve and the tingling described is typical of its compression (Carpal Tunnel Syndrome). And people should be aware that morbid obesity is a known risk factor for the development of this syndrome. :wink:
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Postby Kalgrm » Wed Jan 30, 2008 10:59 pm

thomas_cho wrote:Anyone tried these?

http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Mode ... delID=9686

My hands are getting numb from the MTB, and I have been thinking abt trying these out. May not work for MTB riding, but they look like very comfortable grips ... and could be the solution to numb hands.

I've been interested in the Ergon grips for a long time now, but nobody stocks them in Oz. Now that I'vee seen them on CRC, they'll be going on my next order. (My hands don't go numb, but they do get sore from the pounding on the MTB.)

Note that the bloke who pushes them in the US says that the small size fits most people quite well and only those with really large hands should go for the large size. You'll find his comments all over the MTBR.com site if you want more infor or want to speak with him directly.

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Postby Hotdog » Thu Jan 31, 2008 8:25 am

Kalgrm wrote:
thomas_cho wrote:Anyone tried these?

http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Mode ... delID=9686

My hands are getting numb from the MTB, and I have been thinking abt trying these out. May not work for MTB riding, but they look like very comfortable grips ... and could be the solution to numb hands.

I've been interested in the Ergon grips for a long time now, but nobody stocks them in Oz. Now that I'vee seen them on CRC, they'll be going on my next order. (My hands don't go numb, but they do get sore from the pounding on the MTB.)

Ooh, I swear I saw some of them in Woolys Wheels when I was in there last weekend shopping for grips and bar tape. They don't seem to have them in their online shop though, and I'm sure CRC would give you a better price anyway.
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Postby europa » Thu Jan 31, 2008 8:44 am

They'd want to do the job because it doesn't look like you can use any sort of bar end with them.

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Postby Mulger bill » Thu Jan 31, 2008 12:07 pm

europa wrote:They'd want to do the job because it doesn't look like you can use any sort of bar end with them.

Richard


If that's the case, check out BBBs BHG-13 Ergofix, which combine with their BBE-15 Ergosticks. I'd link to the pics, but their site is playing up :roll:

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Postby europa » Thu Jan 31, 2008 3:21 pm

Fitted the long, adjustable neck. Bars at saddle height, reach lengthened by a bit over 3cm - it's closer to my drop bar setups now.

This takes the sitting position from 'upright holding the bars' to 'forwards and leaning on the bars'. Moving the saddle back a bit would probably be a good move and will be the next thing I try.

I rode her down to Marion Shopping Centre - basically the school run with an extra km down a steepish hill added on. She's certainly a smooth, competent and comfortable bike ... apart from the bloody awful Bontrager saddle and numb hands.

Yup, it didn't fix the problem, not that I expected it to. They were as bad/good as they ever were when I had her set up with drops, so that's promising at least.

Trouble is, now that I've got the bent, I can't see why I should have crook hands and a block of wood rammed up my rear :?

A bit of fiddling with the gears found a happy medium, though it's not real interested going onto the granny - the approved method is to flick the lever, wait for the chain to shift across, swear, unclip foot, tap chain with toe, reclip foot and continue riding, further swearing being optional.

Interestingly, while the chain was refusing to shift, I could see the dr pulsing from side to side. There are two issues here - what was causing the sideways movement in the chain and why didn't the dr just pull the chain across? This is an old dr Shaun, any chance that the spring's a bit tired?

So, we're closer to the final setup and she's looking good. The mtb gear ratios work well - she really climbs well and I hit 57km/hr without going stupid with the pedalling.

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Postby Blybo » Thu Jan 31, 2008 3:51 pm

europa wrote:They'd want to do the job because it doesn't look like you can use any sort of bar end with them.

Richard

Maybe you can Richard. They look a similar design to the Specialized ones I have on my MTB with the same pro bar ends that you use. The Specialized ones have a metal core but a removable end cap and allen key bolt to stop twisting on the bars . The improvement over my giant grips was fantastic and they complement the bar ends nicely. You simply slide them further inwards on the bars allowing fitting of the bar ends. We have the same set up for the missus on her flat bar and the grips are a different shape and size for girls.

Also with the seat, consider a Fizik Arione (Gamma version). Fizik have a solution for saddle bags and rear lights that we discussed months ago. All new Fizik saddles have a removeable clip which allows the direct clipping of a rear Fizik blinky (about $35) so its on the correct angle and its ABOVE your saddle bag so it can be seen when using temporary mudguards or racks with out the possibility of falling off.
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Postby europa » Thu Jan 31, 2008 4:06 pm

Thanks for that Blybo. I'll look into it when I'm a bit more financial.

Ahh, lights. I took the dog for a ride on tuesday ... and realised that my rear blinky is at about the same height as the top of his trailer :? Something to look at if I start doing a lot of night riding though I probably won't as my night vision is rubbish now. I used to be able to walk around in the bush without any lights bar natural lighting, now I have trouble picking small differences in shading and so I need really, really good lights. Methinks it'll be a case of not riding at night unless I have to.

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Postby Kid_Carbine » Thu Jan 31, 2008 5:46 pm

europa wrote:Interestingly, while the chain was refusing to shift, I could see the dr pulsing from side to side. Richard

Is the dr actually pulsing, or is the chainring bent & not running true?
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Postby Blybo » Thu Jan 31, 2008 8:11 pm

europa wrote: ...Methinks it'll be a case of not riding at night unless I have to.

Richard
Yeah but once winter hits I'm sure your uni commute will have you in low light or darkness at times. I was lit up like a christmas tree at 9.00am this morning as it was raining :oops: . I'm sure some must think I'm paraniod but better to look stupid and arrive alive I say. A good helmet blinky can be very useful too as you can be seen over the top of car roofs. Rachel got me a LidLED for Christmas (about $25-$30) and they are much brighter than expected

The Arione is not a cheap saddle at around $160 from the lbs but I'm sure Fizik have cheaper models though.
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Postby europa » Thu Jan 31, 2008 8:38 pm

Blybo wrote:
europa wrote: ...Methinks it'll be a case of not riding at night unless I have to.

Richard
Yeah but once winter hits I'm sure your uni commute will have you in low light or darkness at times. I was lit up like a christmas tree at 9.00am this morning as it was raining :oops: . I'm sure some must think I'm paraniod but better to look stupid and arrive alive I say. A good helmet blinky can be very useful too as you can be seen over the top of car roofs. Rachel got me a LidLED for Christmas (about $25-$30) and they are much brighter than expected

The Arione is not a cheap saddle at around $160 from the lbs but I'm sure Fizik have cheaper models though.


Uni's in the middle of the day mate. I can't be home too late because I have to feed and look after kids (not to mention soccer training). I've been able to avoid late finishes this year, if I can't next year, I'll have to do the subjects externally.

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