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Old 05-02-2008, 10:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Road Bike Update (and asking for more advice)

Since so many of you guys helped me purchase my first road bicycle and some gear I figured I owed everyone who followed a quick update.

For those that don't recall, i got a slightly used Masi Vincere off ebay for a steal. I put on some crankbros egg beater quattros. I rode all last summer in Texas on a borrowed bike and I used to do tons of mountain biking, some competitions, 4+ years ago.

Now I have ridden several hundred miles now, despite occasional snow fall still; most recently on April 30th. I am graduating a week from Sunday and my biggest regret is not hafing had a bike all four years while at university. I appreciate Vermont a LOT more. I get to ride some world famous "gaps" or paths between mountain spines. My general routes take me across hundreds of postcard moments from covered bridges with ancient 3+ ft wide planks, along side melting white water rivers, and across great mountain roads. Unfortunately some cooler places have dirt roads, and although they are compact I'm not sure what's safe.

The bike is holding up well. I took the week off because classes were ending and I had to do my thesis, besides we had massive rain. I need to get it to a shop and beg for some air because the front tire is suspiciously low.

Now I am deciding on whether I return to NASA or accept a Cabot cheese sponsorship to ride from VT to Colorado this summer promoting voting among youth, with many other riders from VT colleges. It's a tough decision...

Unfortunately grad school may take this away from me since I am attending Tufts for grad school and my gf is working at Harvard, I will be stuck living in Cambridge/Boston/Medford with no easy access to open roads.

So once again, I ask for some advice What should I be doing about emergency equipment. For now I am interested in keeping things light and my newbish level of experience on the road has kept me from packing anything extra on. Should I carry patch kits, tubes, or small air pumps? How much should I worry about problems of those natures?

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Old 05-03-2008, 09:43 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by GenKreton View Post
So once again, I ask for some advice What should I be doing about emergency equipment. For now I am interested in keeping things light and my newbish level of experience on the road has kept me from packing anything extra on. Should I carry patch kits, tubes, or small air pumps? How much should I worry about problems of those natures?
Here's a link to what a lot of folks are carrying. It's no fun walking 10 miles because you did not have a tube. You can go 5 months and not have a problem but just like in a car it happens at the worst possible time. Throwing a small seat pouch together is not going to make much difference on weight and you will sure be glad you have it when the chain breaks or you have a flat.

Sounds like the bike bag is the least of your worries Congratulations and good luck with the career choices.
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Last edited by Lazarus; 05-03-2008 at 09:57 AM..
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Old 05-03-2008, 02:55 PM   #3 (permalink)
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What size seat pouch do you need to fit all that?

Sometimes I ride with a small camelbak made more for mountain biking, so I can use that as a temporary place to store some things. I already to carry alan wrenches in it.

I really like the idea of the CO2 canisters over carrying a pump, too. I need to stop by my LBS to see what I can get together for this week. With this big trips I definitely don't want to have a problem and be stranded without cell service and a 20 mile walk through mountains.

I feel like such a newbie still, but I guess we all need to start somewhere.
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Old 05-03-2008, 05:17 PM   #4 (permalink)
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What size seat pouch do you need to fit all that?

Sometimes I ride with a small camelbak made more for mountain biking, so I can use that as a temporary place to store some things. I already to carry alan wrenches in it.

I really like the idea of the CO2 canisters over carrying a pump, too. I need to stop by my LBS to see what I can get together for this week. With this big trips I definitely don't want to have a problem and be stranded without cell service and a 20 mile walk through mountains.

I feel like such a newbie still, but I guess we all need to start somewhere.
Mine was a small, about the size of your fist. The thing that will take the most room is the tube. It's surprising how much stuff you can put in them. When you go to the LBS (local bike store) just pull one off the shelf and start stuffing stuff in there. If you ride with a jersey they have pockets in the back where you can carry stuff if you don't want a bike bag.
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Old 05-06-2008, 11:08 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I prefer a frame pump to the CO2 cartridges, but then I'm pretty retro in that regard. I also see far too many used cartridges littering the side of the roads where I rode. At a very minimum, I recommend a tube, and full patch kit. If you're OK with a little more rotational weight, I put Mr. Tuffy tire liners between my tubes and tires and filled the tubes with slime, and that helped a lot with all the puncture vine in CO. An extra small seat bag should hold a tube, tire levers, patch kit, and possibly a multi-tool (I highly recommend one with a bag to keep from ruining the tube). Again (my personal choice), a frame pump under the top tube, and you'll be set for most anything. For long tours, get a couple spokes of each size needed and tape them to your right chainstay (it'll help keep the chain from hitting the frame, and if you break a spoke, you'll have the right replacement handy).

Good luck with whichever choice you make!
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Old 09-03-2008, 12:04 PM   #6 (permalink)
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No Co2 cartridges,please...

They are for emergency race use only,everyone else should use a pump...Why?

I can't tell you how many of these empty CO2 cartridges line the roadways...and they are not cheap!...their only benefit is speed...so they are only needed in a triathlon,or off road race...

I have seen people freeze the skin off their palm with these things...try riding after that!And if there happens to be a problem with your tube,or you didn't find what poked the hole,and it does it AGAIN,immediately,well,....Pumps give you many chances,and work for routine inflation as well....

you just really need a small pump,and a multiple patch kit...You can make small bike size patches from larger automotive ones,and I use a small glass bottle for glue,cuz the tubes of glue evaporate...Likewise the self stick patches deteriorate to uselessness quickly...

Finally,tires with a kevlar belt under the tread(NOT the bead) will let you ride through some stuff that is shockingly sharp...

Get a pump,a mini tool with a chain tool,a patchkit,good belted tires,keep them very HARD,and enjoy the ride,...also watch the road surface and don't ride over sharp stuff!

Flats suck!
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Old 09-03-2008, 12:38 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Good Advice

You guys are good! I'm impressed. Here's my two cents.

You need a spare tube, glueless patches (for this trip they weigh less and are less messy), a good frame or mini pump (in a pinch they have infinitely more uses--replace a broken handle bar, ward off unfriendly dogs) and in the unlikely event of multiple flats, the pump can be reused, a multi-tool, chain tool, and tire levers(if you are riding with someone else you need one set between you--to save weight), bring a picture ID,and insurance card.

The tube should be opened up and tested prior to your ride. Then put in in a zip lock bag with talc. Carry all that you can in an underseat bag--it's less weight that your body has to carry and less chance of it chaffing. You might also want to go to Ultra Marathon Cycling Association, Inc. and read about brevets, there might be a couple of things we've forgotten. Good Luck
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Old 09-03-2008, 04:40 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikin' Ed View Post
...ward off unfriendly dogs...
boy did THAT bring me down memory lane!

This slobbering, barking, mean Roti used to chase me everytime I road past his place... which happened to be along this uphill section of road between Niles Canyon and Castro Valley <can't remember the road's name right now..>.

The water bottle squirt trick didn't phase him... ignoring him didn't work...stopping just made him more aggressive... finally whacking him is the arse using my pump like a polo mallet did the trick! yipe-yipe-yipe!

Smart dog though... riding past him in the future, all I had to do was motion like I was going to reach for my pump and he'd give up the chase, head for home, tail between his legs.

I'm an animal lover through and through, but I swear it was me or him

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