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A bike I cannot like!

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A bike I cannot like!

Old 11-13-22, 01:12 PM
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A bike I cannot like!

Anybody bought one and found the same?
For some reason, I cannot make that connection with one of these bikes. I just bought it locally for 100 smackeroos and, considering it's probable purchase date, it's in good nick.
It was to be my new shopper with front basket.
New pedals, tyres (32 size) for a comfortable ride with an elderly gel seat cover to gild the lily, and off goes.elderly me.
Turgid. Like riding through mud. Legs feel like lead, my passion evaporates like the early morning mist.
Could it be the new tyres? Rubber too soft, maybe, needing to bed-in like new car tyres sometimes seem to?
The other two bikes are fine. Both inspire me (or my legs) to do more, to go faster! Whether I'm on a diatance trip (anything over 5 miles lol) or a shopping/gym run) it's the same.
But my latest acquisition?
Can't get no . . . .satisfaction!

Never gets cleaned

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Old 11-13-22, 02:57 PM
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I'm not the greatest bike mechanic (or even a good one) but I will share what I know from 30 years of bike commuting on not so new bikes.

First, most recently, a simply replacing the chain with a new one for $14 cured a sluggish feeling bike and returned my 1984 Nishiki International to it's former glory. https://www.bikeforums.net/commuting...st-wasn-t.html

Regarding tires, I prefer smooth, lighter, more supple tires and put tire liners in for more puncture and thorn resistance. I have tried the popular heavy-duty puncture-resistant tires and while they had grippy compounds, they were a drudge to ride. Unless you are riding dirt, gravel or snow, tread just slows you down. I just mounted my heavy-duty, studded snow tires with deep tread on my winter bike which drops my average speed by almost 2mph on dry pavement.

Check to see the brakes are clearing the rims when not in use. The brakes may be off center, or the wheel may be out of true.

Check to see if the rear axel is broken. I had that happen once and the bike rode just fine except under heavy pedaling where the broken axel allowed the rear wheel to deflect enough to make the tire rub on the non-drive side chain stay.

Check the bearings in the wheels and bottom bracket.

If the bike had a good solid frame, and it is a comfortable fit, it may be worth having a trustworthy mechanic go through it and make suggestions.

In my case with my old road bike, the mechanic suggested it was merely the chain. He even asked if I knew how to replace it (I did) so as not to incur the shop fee for service (plus he was busy).
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Old 11-14-22, 08:22 AM
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Gonna take it out for a trip. Set up for general road/hilly terrain. And I've pumped my tyres up more. I don't have sticky brakes or anything else catching, but I did do something naughty.
Ordering 2 inner tubes, only one held air. The other had a valve defect, so I cut out the valve, sliced the tyre along its inner circumference, and stuffed it in the wheel along with the smaller original 25 size tube. It went up ok . . .Fingers crossed, see how she goes!
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Old 11-14-22, 08:35 AM
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Fore/aft position of the saddle can have an impact of the weight distribution between the wheels. This can have a knock-on effect of how steering feels.

Saddle height can affect how much weight is on the various contact points. Making the bike uncomfortable if out of range for you.

Looking at the photos, the saddle nose down seems like the easiest free low hanging fruit to mess with.
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Old 11-14-22, 12:55 PM
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Seems like smaller gears on the rear cassette than what I’d expect to see on a bike like that. It’s probably just the angle in the picture but I’m having a hard time figuring out what the handlebars are supposed to look like.
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Old 11-14-22, 04:57 PM
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Looking at the first two bikes, it is obvious from the seat and handlebar heights that the frames are far too small for you. This will also make the fore-aft distance between seat and handlebars too short, making it very difficult to fit you correctly. I'd guess that the seat fore-aft position relative to the pedals is as a result way off from what it should be, making it difficult to get you in a correct position on the bike. The wacky handlebar/brake setup and ultra long stems on bikes 1 and 3 are most likely caused by the need to mitigate the smallness of the frame and closeness of the bars to you.

Also note that your "solution" to the bad inner tube is not going to work. The second inner tube that you stuffed into the tire is far too thin to make any meaningful difference to the amount that you've stretched out the 25mm inner tube. It definitely can't help the ride quality too. Expect flats soon since you've way overstretched that tube. I'd recommend that you replace it with a proper size tube ASAP.
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Old 11-14-22, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by davester View Post
Looking at the first two bikes, it is obvious from the seat and handlebar heights that the frames are far too small for you. This will also make the fore-aft distance between seat and handlebars too short, making it very difficult to fit you correctly. I'd guess that the seat fore-aft position relative to the pedals is as a result way off from what it should be, making it difficult to get you in a correct position on the bike. The wacky handlebar/brake setup and ultra long stems on bikes 1 and 3 are most likely caused by the need to mitigate the smallness of the frame and closeness of the bars to you.

Also note that your "solution" to the bad inner tube is not going to work. The second inner tube that you stuffed into the tire is far too thin to make any meaningful difference to the amount that you've stretched out the 25mm inner tube. It definitely can't help the ride quality too. Expect flats soon since you've way overstretched that tube. I'd recommend that you replace it with a proper size tube ASAP.
The first bike set up is what I aim for on the third. There's about an inch and a half on the wheelbase and after amendment by me, measurement for measurement, it stacks up.
The only things I'm gonna do now is to swap the seat , and the pedals. I'm determined the white bike is to stay, it is the newest and has shiny spokes. It also has a 28T rear speocket for some reason. 26 is usually enough.
I agree about the tube! Pity about presta valves though. You'd think something better would be around these days . . .probably is but I still have my head in the sand.
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Old 11-14-22, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by davester View Post
Looking at the first two bikes, it is obvious from the seat and handlebar heights that the frames are far too small for you. This will also make the fore-aft distance between seat and handlebars too short, making it very difficult to fit you correctly. I'd guess that the seat fore-aft position relative to the pedals is as a result way off from what it should be, making it difficult to get you in a correct position on the bike. The wacky handlebar/brake setup and ultra long stems on bikes 1 and 3 are most likely caused by the need to mitigate the smallness of the frame and closeness of the bars to you.
Yup. Just what I was going to say. The handlebar and seat extensions appear to indicate that the frames are way too small. That being the case, the BB/seat distances are probably significantly non-optimal too. Hard to say if the extended steering tube and short stems are because you want to be more upright, or if you don't like reaching further out to grab then handlebars.

Obviously, take all that with a grain of salt ... I'm no bike fitter.
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Old 11-14-22, 05:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
Yup. Just what I was going to say. The handlebar and seat extensions appear to indicate that the frames are way too small. That being the case, the BB/seat distances are probably significantly non-optimal too. Hard to say if the extended steering tube and short stems are because you want to be more upright, or if you don't like reaching further out to grab then handlebars.

Obviously, take all that with a grain of salt ... I'm no bike fitter.
We're all dofferent and age dictates some of us ride upright to avert a bust neck joint over a bump, through peering upwards. It happened once, aint going to again. The first bike is probably female size if not just small, but it suited me from the outset. Still does because it enables a closer handlebar fit.
I quite liked that fit on my motorbikes too but it got a bit windy over 70 . . .. . .
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Old 11-14-22, 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by peterws View Post
We're all dofferent and age dictates some of us ride upright to avert a bust neck joint over a bump, through peering upwards. It happened once, aint going to again. The first bike is probably female size if not just small, but it suited me from the outset. Still does because it enables a closer handlebar fit.
I quite liked that fit on my motorbikes too but it got a bit windy over 70 . . .. . .

Oh, I get that. I have had people who are respected "fitters" do some adjustments for me, and the bike just didn't feel right.

It just might be that you need a bike that has a different frame geometry to allow that upright a posture, while keeping the other relationships where they should be. I know a guy that has a bike with a super long head tube. It was custom made for him because he wanted a much more upright posture than was otherwise possible. There might be other ways to get the a similar result (all three appear to have setback seatposts ... you might try a zero setback seatpost).

Am I correct in assuming the first two fit fine and you are trying to match the third (white) bike with the same fit?
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Old 11-14-22, 06:21 PM
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If the cassettes are the same number of cogs try switching wheels with your blue bike. Sometimes a heavier set will make a bike feel sluggish. Not going to comment on fit since you are happy with it.
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Old 11-15-22, 01:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
Oh, I get that. I have had people who are respected "fitters" do some adjustments for me, and the bike just didn't feel right.

It just might be that you need a bike that has a different frame geometry to allow that upright a posture, while keeping the other relationships where they should be. I know a guy that has a bike with a super long head tube. It was custom made for him because he wanted a much more upright posture than was otherwise possible. There might be other ways to get the a similar result (all three appear to have setback seatposts ... you might try a zero setback seatpost).

Am I correct in assuming the first two fit fine and you are trying to match the third (white) bike with the same fit?
Exactly that. But it isn't an exact art. That's why I'll be swapping seats and pedals. I'm just too fussy and gone are the days of face-slapping otherwise my wife would've . . . .
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Old 11-15-22, 11:42 AM
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Can't really tell by looking at it so I'll defer to the experts above but what about the weight? I have a small selection of steel bikes and none of them are grail worthy but the lowest quality bike weighs a ton. it's too bad because I really like the bike as a go-to bike for groceries, or casual ride with the missus to get a coffee but when I take it out for a longer stretch, it's like riding through water. Everything else works fine on it but it feels like I'm hauling a trailer full of rocks.
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Old 11-15-22, 12:01 PM
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Originally Posted by gthomson View Post
Can't really tell by looking at it so I'll defer to the experts above but what about the weight? I have a small selection of steel bikes and none of them are grail worthy but the lowest quality bike weighs a ton. it's too bad because I really like the bike as a go-to bike for groceries, or casual ride with the missus to get a coffee but when I take it out for a longer stretch, it's like riding through water. Everything else works fine on it but it feels like I'm hauling a trailer full of rocks.
I know what you mean. The frame of the road bikes are both aluminium with steel forks. With that "extra gel" seat cover, yeah, it'll weigh plenty but I never noticed. I did however, have to get back from a 5 miler quickly (it was sluicing down) and the thing (blue one) just flew. Loved it!
I think, as has been mentioned, the eight evenly spaced gears suit me during such occasions wheras the more widely spaced seven rear sprocket is not something I'm fond of.
I've decided, having bought in error, that the white one will be sold on. I'd rather spend money mainaining my existing. It's gotta be worth it.
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Old 11-15-22, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by peterws View Post
Gonna take it out for a trip. Set up for general road/hilly terrain. And I've pumped my tyres up more. I don't have sticky brakes or anything else catching, but I did do something naughty.
Ordering 2 inner tubes, only one held air. The other had a valve defect, so I cut out the valve, sliced the tyre along its inner circumference, and stuffed it in the wheel along with the smaller original 25 size tube. It went up ok . . .Fingers crossed, see how she goes!
IME: If the tube is too small it will develop a leak.
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Old 11-15-22, 04:35 PM
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Teach that bike who's boss and put it on a trainer.
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Old 11-16-22, 09:31 AM
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Had a light bulb moment. Looked at the dang thing. Rejected, unwanted, still with shiny spokes and tidy paintwork. Looked at the horror handlebars I made it wear, with extension ends to add to the ignominy.
Looked at the work I'd have to put in restoring it for re-sale. Decent front innertube, restoration of all the other changes I'd made.
I suddenly decided she looked well good enough to take out. She is a big boy's bike.
Thouroughly enjoying the soft comfortable ride, I saw it for what it was and enjoyed what it does best. An armchair on 2 wheels.
Without arms, but with the shopper basket. instead.


In all her splendour! Snooty ***** Lol

You want Horror Handlebars? You got 'em in one. .

Clean Cogs! Not seen them for ages. The guy must've used this dry lubricant spray. I never took to it, but might soon . . .


Sorry about the picture sizes guys. Huge aren't they?

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Old 11-21-22, 05:04 PM
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Maybe I'm just old school, but those brifters on non-drop handle bars look awkward to me. What's wrong with thumb shifters and separate brake levers, like my 4-finger Shimanos?


(This is a bike I DO like a lot. ) I really appreciate having multiple hand positions and being able to brake from the extensions. I am running 3x8 with the 7-speed thumb shift in non-index mode.
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Old 11-22-22, 09:17 AM
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I loved the thumb shifters. Once had those on a bike in yellow and black, with yellow straight h'bars too, my fave colours from when I was a kid. At school, first year infants, we played around a lot, and made stuff which was fun. Windmills were great; you got to choose two colours, and off you went.
Probably a psychological profile on us all, to separate out the potential Einsteins or Epsteins from amongst us.
I had an axe in those colours too.
But the brake and gear levers are much better on my current arrangement. I do not lean forwards any more. Better for my back and neck when encountering unseen potholes/kerbstones. My hands are ever-ready to stop the thing when needed, which has been several times so far.
I love a good upright seating position. It doesn't stop you having fun.
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Old 11-22-22, 09:44 AM
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Originally Posted by venturi95 View Post
IME: If the tube is too small it will develop a leak.
I typically size tubes on the small side or even a bit smaller than recommended. The are a bit lighter and easier to mount. The do bleed a bit more air and require a bit more frequent topping off, but I have not had actual leaks that caused flats as a result. I guess that could happen somewhat more frequently though.

Edited to add:
That is with light weight tubes. I've never done it with heavier tubes. Also, these days I might be tempted to spring for $$$ aerothan tubes instead.
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Old 11-22-22, 03:06 PM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
I typically size tubes on the small side or even a bit smaller than recommended. The are a bit lighter and easier to mount. The do bleed a bit more air and require a bit more frequent topping off, but I have not had actual leaks that caused flats as a result. I guess that could happen somewhat more frequently though.
.
But not in winter! The best thing about winter is . . you never need to pump your tyres up. Now, you guys'll be aware of the reasons for that, no doubt . . .but I never get puncturres anyway. Last time for that was withinh a week of buying a puncture-proof tyre. a Gator. The sidewalls are so weak I hit a rut in the road and got a snakebite . . .
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Old 11-22-22, 10:12 PM
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Originally Posted by peterws View Post
But not in winter! The best thing about winter is . . you never need to pump your tyres up. Now, you guys'll be aware of the reasons for that, no doubt . . .
What?! I've never heard this and can't imagine how this could possibly be.
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Old 11-23-22, 01:34 AM
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Originally Posted by davester View Post
What?! I've never heard this and can't imagine how this could possibly be.
I don't suppose you would in California . .. .
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Old 11-23-22, 10:07 AM
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Yeah Dave, didn't you know they pack the tires with snow and ride them until the spring thaw?
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