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Old 7th December 2018, 06:11   #4036
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Originally Posted by amitoj View Post
...

Power meter is the main thing that is missing from my setup. But my expense account for bike shopping is closed for some time

The most important item on my wishlist right now is to have our Regional Brevet Admin schedule populaires throughout the year so that I can shoot for a P-12 award.
I am sure you will upgrade to power based riding soon in the future.

And all the best with getting your P-12 award. Hope everything works out well and they start scheduling these events regularly
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Old 7th December 2018, 09:42   #4037
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I too only have access to power only via my wahoo trainer, nothing for my bike per se that I can use on outdoor rides.

Interestingly and on a related note, we now have a concept of power based training for running as well. If anyone is interested, they can look up a product called Stryd - its a footpod that allows you to adopt a power based approach to run training.
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Old 7th December 2018, 09:48   #4038
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Amitoj, Graaja, impressive space age sounding buys guys! This thread could definitely do with more photos please. Bike porn!

Am still in that part of the curve as a rider where I'm cycling on the road because I enjoy it. Not for the numbers.

But the whole world seems to be on indoor trainers and zwift etc. so obviously that seems like it would eventually be the next step ...

But first I need to get more consistent with all year riding instead of the 3-4 month burst with months long inactivity interspersed and then having to start all over again.

Same cycle repeating for the third or fourth time now in the past two years.

Build up base miles into the legs and core and heart and lungs.

Start going longer and harder and building in more weekly climbing.

Then go longer on the weekends. Move from the 100s and 150s to the first 200. Then a 250 and finally a 300.

That's where you hit a block as a solo rider. Without a partner or a group, it's not possible to go on from there to a 400 because of the extended night riding.

I think this time around I'm going to just stop putting time and schedule pressure on myself with carefully charted out rides and volume rampup to increasingly longer weekend rides.

As happened last time around, overseas travel for work messes up the whole plan and all the prior training goes to waste. As even a three week break at the end of a pretty intense 3 months and 3500+ Kms and you come back on to the road totally out of condition.

Apologies for venting. Just wanted to know from you guys if I was doing something wrong or could change something?

Cheers, Doc
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Old 7th December 2018, 22:28   #4039
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Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
Amitoj, Graaja, impressive space age sounding buys guys! This thread could definitely do with more photos please. Bike porn!
Thanks Doc. Will try to take some pictures over the weekend and share.

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Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
Am still in that part of the curve as a rider where I'm cycling on the road because I enjoy it. Not for the numbers.

But the whole world seems to be on indoor trainers and zwift etc. so obviously that seems like it would eventually be the next step ...
Three years back, I was in your shoes. I was riding just for fun and was doing brevets just for completing them and not worrying about time etc. I got the MTB shoes just for the reason that they allowed me to stop at roadside eateries and walk normal whereas the guys with roadbike shoes would be walking on their heels which looked funny and uncomfortable.

But then things changed when I started riding short Criterium races and then got into running half marathons, swimmathons and Triathlons. Unlike brevets where they do not publish at what place a rider finished, in these events, they publish your timing and overall standing. Though the satisfaction of completing these events is the most important thing, it was also quite embarassing to finish at the bottom 10%. That is when I started to focus on performance and that is what has led me to this point.

Even in Brevets, the satisfaction you get when you finish a 200km ride in 9 hours is much higher than when you finish it on the nick of time at 13:30 hours. It all comes to FTP (functional threshold power). On 200k+ rides, you should be riding at 50% to 60% of your FTP to ride strong till end. If your FTP is low, you have to ride at higher % of FTP to be able to finish within time ending up tired and bruised. Also, on rides 300K or more, if you have lower FTP, you end up sacrificing rest which also can result in other problems like fatigue, injury etc. So, the correct approach to strongly riding Brevets is to increase FTP.

Riding lots of miles alone does not improve FTP. It improves base, but to improve FTP, you need to do structured workouts where you add sustained efforts at various % of FTP, short to long intervals at various % over FTP etc. That is where these indoor workouts excel.

Another important thing to take care of is nutrition and hydration. In my early long rides, I used to always take breaks and have tea or coffee with snacks like biscuts, vada etc. This was a mistake. The moment you load your digestive system, your body starts spending energy in digesting the food that you ingested and you will lack energy for the ride. It is best to eat food that will put sugar in blood without much effort on the digestive system - enerzal, dried fruits, chocolate bars etc. Yes, your taste buds totally start hating you by the time you finish the ride, but you finish strong.

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Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
...
I think this time around I'm going to just stop putting time and schedule pressure on myself with carefully charted out rides and volume rampup to increasingly longer weekend rides.

...
Apologies for venting. Just wanted to know from you guys if I was doing something wrong or could change something?
That is the right approach. Have a well planned training schedule. Have shorter structured workouts to boost FTP in the weekdays and do long endurance building rides in the weekends. You will see the difference in your future Brevets in both the time it takes to finish the Brevet and also how strong you feel at the finish line. Once your FTP increases, you can ride faster at lesser effort and catch that extra hour of sleep.

Good luck with your training and for the next season.
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Old 7th December 2018, 23:53   #4040
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Originally Posted by graaja View Post
Thanks Doc. Will try to take some pictures over the weekend and share.


Three years back, I was in your shoes. I was riding just for fun and was doing brevets just for completing them and not worrying about time etc. I got the MTB shoes just for the reason that they allowed me to stop at roadside eateries and walk normal whereas the guys with roadbike shoes would be walking on their heels which looked funny and uncomfortable.

But then things changed when I started riding short Criterium races and then got into running half marathons, swimmathons and Triathlons. Unlike brevets where they do not publish at what place a rider finished, in these events, they publish your timing and overall standing. Though the satisfaction of completing these events is the most important thing, it was also quite embarassing to finish at the bottom 10%. That is when I started to focus on performance and that is what has led me to this point.

Even in Brevets, the satisfaction you get when you finish a 200km ride in 9 hours is much higher than when you finish it on the nick of time at 13:30 hours. It all comes to FTP (functional threshold power). On 200k+ rides, you should be riding at 50% to 60% of your FTP to ride strong till end. If your FTP is low, you have to ride at higher % of FTP to be able to finish within time ending up tired and bruised. Also, on rides 300K or more, if you have lower FTP, you end up sacrificing rest which also can result in other problems like fatigue, injury etc. So, the correct approach to strongly riding Brevets is to increase FTP.

Riding lots of miles alone does not improve FTP. It improves base, but to improve FTP, you need to do structured workouts where you add sustained efforts at various % of FTP, short to long intervals at various % over FTP etc. That is where these indoor workouts excel.

Another important thing to take care of is nutrition and hydration. In my early long rides, I used to always take breaks and have tea or coffee with snacks like biscuts, vada etc. This was a mistake. The moment you load your digestive system, your body starts spending energy in digesting the food that you ingested and you will lack energy for the ride. It is best to eat food that will put sugar in blood without much effort on the digestive system - enerzal, dried fruits, chocolate bars etc. Yes, your taste buds totally start hating you by the time you finish the ride, but you finish strong.


That is the right approach. Have a well planned training schedule. Have shorter structured workouts to boost FTP in the weekdays and do long endurance building rides in the weekends. You will see the difference in your future Brevets in both the time it takes to finish the Brevet and also how strong you feel at the finish line. Once your FTP increases, you can ride faster at lesser effort and catch that extra hour of sleep.

Good luck with your training and for the next season.
Totally get what you mean about the power. In lay person terms, fast riders who finish early, in spite of the much higher wattage they put out and possibly greater more intense suffering over a shorter times, they suffer much less overall and for much shorter time than the slower riders.

Personally, I'm a 10 and 17 hour 200 and 300 rider. I've done more than one of each so I can say that confidently.

It's not the fastest, but it's not slow or slowest either. Over a less hilly 300 than the Mahabaleshwar one, a 15 hour finish could be a possibility as well.

400 I do not know, coz the 24 hour finish was with the first 200 done at 25+ kmph, then severe knee pain, and the second 200 on the return at just 18+ kmph popping Combiflams. So possibly a 20 to 22 hour finish could be done. I think.

A point I missed in the last post was about body weight. I'm 180 cm and my peak fitness cycling weight is 80 kilos. I never managed to cut it lower. But the smallest break off the saddle with an overseas trip and travel and food thrown in, and 5 kilos gets put on in the blink of an eye.

A longer time (2+ months) off and it's 10 kilos. Up to 90 which I'm starting back at now. As road bikers, you guys would appreciate that 10 kilos means riding with an extra bike! Lol

I'm a fan of Coach Hughes. Great inputs. Not too technical. For a lay guy like me. So this is what he suggests for the 3 month buildup base endurance phase (this is a mix of that and what he prescribed for the intervening weeks between brevets with a 4 week gap between each) -

3 easy recovery rides at conversation pace (40 Kms that could be increased to 50 km) - this is faster cruising than digestion pace post a meal

1 brisk ride of up to 1 to 2 hours at headwind pace (can talk but cannot whistle) - 40 km with a constant gradient longish stretch to push on

1 hard ride of about an hour or a bit more at what he classified as sub-barf pace - 30 km of a hill climb or a hard rolling route done as fast as possible

So 4 or 5 weekday rides (depending on laziness and knocking one easy ride off).

The easy rides at endurance pace train the body to burn fat for energy, and going hard on such rides defeats the physiological changes the body undergoes when riding at that pace over time, building the kilometers.

The brisk and hard ride, including intervals and getting into the habit of standing on short explosive climbs, like flyovers, build power. And speed.

On the weekends (for me only Sunday), it is an endurance pace long ride, making up not more than the cumulative weekday volume, so not more than 50% of the total week volume.

Increase 10-15% every week might not be possible for weekday rides, as 40 or max 50 km is all a working guy can manage with an early start in the morning before work. But can definitely ramp up the weekend rides from 80 km all the way to 200 km and then alternate 100, 150, 200, even 250 Kms, building up to the next official 300 and then 400.

200 is the sweet spot. More than that is not sustainable over successive weekends. Life too needs attention.

You are right that in brevets the finishing ranks are not officially put up. But believe me, there is a lot of pretty intense amateur level competitiveness among the fast and faster guys. Everyone with that streak does keep track of the total time of he top finishers. Depending on who are the guys riding, a top 5 to top 10 finish is always a feather in your helmet.

Racing would come next. Seniors and veterans also being pretty hard fought with Poona having a slew of ex racers in that age cohort - late 40s, early 50s.

Thanks for those greats tips!

Cheers, Doc
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Old 9th December 2018, 22:26   #4041
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A point I missed in the last post was about body weight. I'm 180 cm and my peak fitness cycling weight is 80 kilos. I never managed to cut it lower. But the smallest break off the saddle with an overseas trip and travel and food thrown in, and 5 kilos gets put on in the blink of an eye.

A longer time (2+ months) off and it's 10 kilos. Up to 90 which I'm starting back at now. As road bikers, you guys would appreciate that 10 kilos means riding with an extra bike! Lol
I can totally relate to your situation. Till 3 years back (since another 10 years before that), I too was in the 90-94kg weight range. I used to do lots of cycling, running etc., but the best I could do was to bring the weight down to around 89kg. Just a couple of years back, I realized once you hit 40's and metabolism slows down, exercising does not play much of a role in weight reduction, but diet does. That is when I started reading about LCHF (low carb high fat) diet after reading the book "Why We Get Fat" by Gary Taubes. That was a turning point for me.

With LCHF, I was able to bring the weight down to 80 kilos. I then added intermittent fasting (IF) a year back. Now my weight is at 77kg to 79kg range. I want to bring this down to 73kg, but as I have started adding carbs due to my high intensity workouts for an upcoming triathlon event, my weight loss has stopped. I will resume LCHF and IF in January to achieve my target weight.

I would suggest you read through the Weight Loss Thread (The Weight Loss Thread) where you can find lots of details of LCHF. I am sure with proper dieting, you will be able to reduce your weight to the ideal cycling weight and also maintain it without gaining it back.

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This thread could definitely do with more photos please. Bike porn!
Here are a few pictures of the Wahoo Kickr.
The Bicycles thread-kickr.jpg

The flywheel side. The Kickr Core comes with a massive flywheel that weighs 12 pounds. This gives a very good road feel and unlike the wheel on trainers with smaller flywheels, allows some coasting as well.
The Bicycles thread-flywheel.jpg

The drive side has the cassette. This supports 10 speed and 11 speed cassettes. The cassette is not supplied with the trainer and I had to buy it separate.
The Bicycles thread-cassette.jpg

Supports both Bluetooth and ANT+. Bluetooth is used to pair the trainer to a cell phone. ANT+ is used to pair it with a bike computer or to a laptop using an ANT+ dongle.
The Bicycles thread-ant_bt.jpg

Remove the rear wheel off the bike and attach the bike to the trainer. The trainer becomes the wheel of the cycle.
The Bicycles thread-wahoo-2.jpg

The bike attached to the trainer. The removed rear wheel can be seen in the background.
The Bicycles thread-wahoo-3.jpg

The laptop that runs the Zwift app. I have connected the output of the laptop to the home theater system using a HDMI cable. The small dongle next to the HDMI cable is the ANT+ dongle. Zwift uses this dongle to communicate with the trainer, the ANT+ heart strap and the ANT+ cadence sensor that is fixed to the bike.
The Bicycles thread-laptop.jpg

The full setup.
The Bicycles thread-wahoo.jpg
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Old 10th December 2018, 00:09   #4042
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The other day, my wife and I attended a Christmas market. Came across this sign. We thought it very appropiate. On our bicycle shed now!

Jeroen

The Bicycles thread-img_4063.jpg
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Old 10th December 2018, 00:27   #4043
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Here are a few pictures of the Wahoo Kickr.
Attachment 1826512
Love the setup. Could you share the approximate price points of the various bits to get a setup like this at home please? For future reference. Loved how you take care to make sure there is something to protect the cycle finish from the dripping sweat!

Noticed how you've setup the saddle right forward for the TT position. Is that the Scott Addict? Seems to be a very popular carbon choice for guys moving on from alloy.

I have the same tail light as you. But I'm wondering how you've managed to align it in line with the seat post. Mine is horizontal. Though I wish I could have it like yours too. The slide in base does not change orientation.

I'm definitely going to go on a diet. I've tried keto in the past with great results. Though some weakness/low energy and I feel some muscle loss too.

The one I did before that with very significant loss of weight I liked better. Where I ate whatever was cooked at home. Just cut out bread, roti, potato and rice. Worked great.

Cheers, Doc

Last edited by aah78 : 10th December 2018 at 21:38. Reason: Removed large quote.
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Old 10th December 2018, 03:51   #4044
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Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
The other day, my wife and I attended a Christmas market. Came across this sign. We thought it very appropiate. On our bicycle shed now!
With all those endorphins flowing in the system, melancholy has no place in cycling indeed

Quote:
Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
Love the setup. Could you share the approximate price points of the various bits to get a setup like this at home please? For future reference. Loved how you take care to make sure there is something to protect the cycle finish from the dripping sweat!

Noticed how you've setup the saddle right forward for the TT position. Is that the Scott Addict? Seems to be a very popular carbon choice for guys moving on from alloy.

I have the same tail light as you. But I'm wondering how you've managed to align it in line with the seat post. Mine is horizontal. Though I wish I could have it like yours too. The slide in base does not change orientation.

I'm definitely going to go on a diet. I've tried keto in the past with great results. Though some weakness/low energy and I feel some muscle loss too.

The one I did before that with very significant loss of weight I liked better. Where I ate whatever was cooked at home. Just cut out bread, roti, potato and rice. Worked great.
Following is the cost breakup:
Wahoo Kickr Core - 68K. Wheel on trainers would cost around 50K.
Cassette - 5K
Zwift subscription - $15 a month. There are other apps like Trainerroad and Sufferfest each with it's own speciality and slightly different costing.

Yes. I have moved the saddle a little higher and forward for the TT setup. But even this does not provide the necessary height difference. As I have reached the saddle height limit, I am planning to drop the height of the handlebar by moving the spacers above the bar. Will do this gradually as I get used to the position.

The tail light that I have only goes in the vertical direction. Maybe the holder has two variants - one for vertical and one horizontal.

Keto is a little difficult to sustain as it allows for very low amount of carbs which makes it a little impractical. Your method of eating what is cooked at home minus the breads, roti, potato and rice (and most importantly, sugar) is much more sustainable and should give excellent results. Instead of considering this a diet, if you make this your eating habit, then you will never have to worry about the yo-yoing weight.

Last edited by graaja : 10th December 2018 at 03:52.
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Old 10th December 2018, 05:22   #4045
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Missed answering your question on the cycle model. It is a Scott Solace 10.
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Old 10th December 2018, 16:19   #4046
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Originally Posted by anandpadhye View Post
Hmmm...don't go for a 25mm roadie in this case. You will have to regularly deal with bent rims and punctures.
Welcome to the madness
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Originally Posted by sdp1975 View Post
The RR 520 is a very well specced bike for it's price. It's got a mostly SRAM groupset and disc brakes. I would prefer it over the ST100 . It weighs 15kg.
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Originally Posted by varunanb View Post
Try for a 540 else pick the 520. You can have fun off-road too in these.
Thank you all for the advice. Yes. Indeed, Its a madness!

Finalized RR 520 and went to nearest decathlon for a purchase 2 weeks ago. Since both L and XL are suitable for me, i had to decide the size. Did a test ride and XL found to be more comfortable. Only Black color was available and selected the same. I believe i had the wrong salesman there. I reached there around 1:30PM without lunch, hoping everything will be completed in half an hour time. Unfortunately i had to wait indefinitely to get it fitted with a stand. Even after 3:30PM, nothing prospective happened and the person was fixing a new order that came after me. Since i got "Just 5 minutes" for the 3rd time, i left them without purchase.

But the experience with the bike didn't let me go away from the product. So ordered the same model through their online website and selected collect from local decathlon store. Order confirmed that i will get a boxed piece and the same can be collected after 7 to 8 days from the day of order. Exactly after 7th day, i got a mail that the product can be collected from the store. Went to the store that evening and submitted the bill. It was my third visit to decathlon and one guy who introduced all the models during my first visit was available there and identified me. During my second visit, i asked about him, but he was on leave. Anyway, i mentioned my experience to him and he apologized to me about the incident and assured that the issue will be well taken care of.

I was planning to unbox the product at home, but since the guy offered an assembly and initial checkups, i decided to get it done at the store itself. They opened the box and get it assembled and made some adjustments with the gear shift and ensured everything is working as expected. Bought a side stand from them at a cost of 699/- and left home with the bike. He taught me how to remove the front wheel for transportation and was very supportive. He also advised the best saddle position as well.

Once i reached home, did another small ride and was satisfied with the performance. Product quality seems to be fine and the ride quality is far far better than any other bicycles i had in the past. I don't have an words when comparing it with a new hero MTB experience happened recently. (Flipkart delivered two hero MTB's without the wheels trued and rust was coming out from the rims and from a hole in carrier. Had worst braking capabilities as well. Flipkart refunded the amount, but my mails to hero cycles questioning the quality remains unanswered even after a month.)

There were some minor niggles and quality issues that i faced with RR520, which can be neglected.

1. Brake touches the disk slightly even when not applied. This need to be adjusted.

2. Never ever remove the reflectors fixed on spokes. If you remove it, most probably, you have to buy another one. The holding metal piece will broke on a single removal and re fixing. Definitely the quality need to be improved

3. Couldn't understand how the tread got damaged like this. I am very gentle to the bike and couldn't recollect any harsh approach. This spotted within a Km of ride through smooth pavement. Seems to be an issue with the tyre quality.
The Bicycles thread-tyre-problem.jpg

Accessories

1. Odometer. This was bought from aliexpress in advance. Got it for a cheap price when compared to amazon, where they sell a lower model with double the price.
The Bicycles thread-odometer.jpg
Odometer sensor placement
The Bicycles thread-odometer-sensor.jpg

2. Stand. I could get a stand costs one third of the price locally, but decided to go with decathlon stand for 699/- Its adjustable and seems rigid.
The Bicycles thread-stand.jpg

3. Lock. Ordered it from their online store in advance.
The Bicycles thread-lock.jpg

3. Rear light and Head lights. Both uses AAA batteries.
Headlight is nothing but an LED torch with a bicycle mount. Rear light can be seen in one of the images below.

4. Bell. Decathlon had good looking bells, but the sound seemed to be poor. So got one from the local shop that has a decent sound.
The Bicycles thread-bell.jpg

5. Mud guards. Got it from local store for 140. Made of plastic and seems good too. Can see the rear warning lamp as well in the below image.
The Bicycles thread-mud-guard-front.jpg
The Bicycles thread-mud-guard-rear.jpg

Below are the major parts and areas of RR520, that worth mentioning.

Tyres used are Btwin all terrain 50-584 / 27.5 x 2.00. Support min of 35PSI to max 65PSI air pressure.
The Bicycles thread-tyre-spec.jpg

Double Wall Rim only for Disc
The Bicycles thread-rim-spec.jpg

SRAM Shifters
The Bicycles thread-front-shifter-1.jpg
The Bicycles thread-front-shifters.jpg
The Bicycles thread-rear-shifter-1.jpg
The Bicycles thread-rear-shifters.jpg

SRAM-X3 rear Derailleurs
The Bicycles thread-sramx3.jpg

Shimano Altus front derailleur
The Bicycles thread-shimano-altus.jpg

Crank set
The Bicycles thread-crankset-1.jpg
The Bicycles thread-crankset.jpg

Cassettte
The Bicycles thread-8-cassette.jpg

Hayes disc brake
The Bicycles thread-hayes-disc-brake.jpg

Weight adjuster for Shock absorber
The Bicycles thread-weight-adjuster-shock.jpg

MRP label
The Bicycles thread-mrp-label.jpg

Saddle adjustments. Note that its a quick release one.
The Bicycles thread-saddle-adjustment.jpg
The Bicycles thread-saddle-height.jpg
The Bicycles thread-sddle-adjust1.jpg

Quick release front tyre.
The Bicycles thread-front-tyre-removal.jpg

Made in India
The Bicycles thread-made-india.jpg

Wear a helmet warning on prominent place.
The Bicycles thread-helmet.jpg

Complete RR520
The Bicycles thread-cycle-1.jpg
The Bicycles thread-cycle.jpg

Last edited by sujithsidhardha : 10th December 2018 at 16:26.
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Old 10th December 2018, 18:48   #4047
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Congrats on your RR520 ! The FD as per the Decathlon website is a Microshift one .

I've read some complaints of a lag with the front FD , so if they've changed it to Altus , that's a welcome move.
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Old 10th December 2018, 19:46   #4048
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Originally Posted by sujithsidhardha View Post
Thank you all for the advice. Yes. Indeed, Its a madness!
Congratulations on a very capable bike! Their Rockrider series remain great value for money. I don't understand why their other bikes (hybrids) now come with only single cranks.

Cheers, Doc

Last edited by aah78 : 10th December 2018 at 21:39. Reason: Quote size.
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Old 14th December 2018, 08:03   #4049
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https://www-forbes-com.cdn.ampprojec...ss-cyclists%2F

"An Interesting article on Bicyclists safety during overtaking by cars.

Spanish automaker SEAT has released promotional materials for its new SUV that promotes the correct distance a motorist should leave when overtaking a cyclist. On 10th December, SEAT sent out a press release for the 2019 version of its Tarraco SUV and this included photos and videos of engineer Esteban Alcantara overtaking two cyclists by moving wholly into the opposite carriageway. “In order to overtake cyclists correctly: reduce the speed and maintain the safety distance,” stated the press release. It is highly unusual – possibly even a first? – for a car company to promote such a critical safety message.


Rule 163 of Britain’s Highway Code states “give motorcyclists, cyclists and horse riders at least as much room as you would when overtaking a car” and illustrates this advice with a photograph of a motorist leaving a full car’s width when overtaking a cyclist. Many other countries have similar “close passing” laws and maxims, although they are rarely enforced."

Posting on the Forums Safety section as well.

Last edited by ACM : 14th December 2018 at 08:08.
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Old 15th December 2018, 09:16   #4050
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Hello everyone.. I've been on the fence for getting a new bike for a very long time. I plan to use it for daily morning rides and commutes, if possible. I've tried hybrids and MTB-s, but haven't checked out road bikes- not decided on which one to go for. I'm on the heavier side and almost 6'- I think I'll be needing a L or XL sized frame depending on the manufacturer. Instead of a fixed budget, I'm more or less on the lookout for a VFM buy than lower cost outright. So, I had considered the following options:

1) A used Firefox Target from my neighbour for 10K.
Components used seems to be good... Shimano Altus front derailleur and Acera for the rear. Had the opportunity to ride it for a week. Fit seems okay. Tires seem to be in pretty good shape. Front derailleur seems a bit slow. Chain had slipped once when shifting the front derailleur gears and I had to slip it back in on the road. Front brakes make a screeching sound when applied and a scratching sound persists for a while after it's applied for a while and then it disappears- those V-brakes definitely need some TLC and possibly a pad replacement.

Pros:
i) Seems well built and light for an MTB. My old Hercules Top Gear with a rear suspension weighed a ton compared to this.
ii) Components used seem pretty good for the price.
iii) A service center is nearby
iv) Ride quality seemed fine though I had locked out the front suspension (not a fan of those)

Cons:
i) It seems to need some servicing and tuning (brakes, especially)
ii) Doesn't seem to be in the best shape aesthetically (but has the lowest price in this lot)
iii) Firefox seems to have a negative stigma when it comes to after sales and reliability.
iv) Not sure if the price is on the higher side or not for a two/three year old bike.

2) A used Montra Blues from my friend for 15K
This one is very well maintained. Has been stored indoors and has been serviced and maintained really well. Fit seems okay here too. The components used seems to be good once again- Shimano Altus front derailleur (not sure) and Shimano Acera rear derailleur. Has a Suntour front suspension. Brakes seemed to work well with no drama. Ride seemed fine enough for me. Was a lot more nimbler compared to the Firefox Target. No delay in shifting gears observed.

Pros
i) Very well maintained. Seen it personally being maintained and serviced well.
ii) Light, well built and finished.
iii) Doesn't seem to require any further preventive maintenance. No niggles expected.
iv) There's a service center nearby that seems to do a good job.

Cons
i) Feel like this is on the expensive side for a two (or more) year old bike
ii) Pricing is awfully close to some new bikes- can't help wondering whether it's worth paying a premium for the Shimano Acera components in this one as compared to the new ones which usually pack in Altus or Tourney rear derailleurs under 20K.

3) A Montra Celtic for 25-30K.
Saw this online. Seems like one heck of deal for a road bike packing Shimano Claris front and rear derailleurs. I like the fact that there's no suspension here. Fit and finish seemed good. Appears to be one heck of a deal for this money. Hard to find a more VFM bike spec wise. Considered a road bike just because it was available at this price point.

Pros
i) The best gear components I could find at this price point.
ii) Montra's fit and finish seems good to me.
iii) A service center is nearby

Cons
i) Not sure how a road bike will take the abuse of daily rides and commutes
ii) Nor am I sure how comfortable I would be on a road bike. I'm used to the committed stance in a CBR, don't know if it helps.
iii) Concerns over the thin 23 tires and how well it would grip in gravel, wet and whether the rim would get bent or not.

4) A new B-Twin Triban 100 flatbar for 20K
Seen it once at Decathlon.

Pros:
i) Liked the silver color
ii) The service seems to be pretty good- a step up from the local dealers for Firefox and Montra
iii) Lifetime warranty on the frame (dunno if it matters- never saw a bike frame go bust)

Cons:
i) Components seem on the lower end- is it me or does it have only a single crankset at the front?

5) B-Twin Rockrider 520
Seen it once at Decathlon.

Pros:
i) Once again, for the seemingly excellent service.
ii) Lifetime warranty on the frame

Cons:
i) Not sure of the components. Have the feeling that a better spec-d bike can be got at the same price or for a bit more.

Other bikes considered were Trek 7.2 FX, Cannondale Quick 6, Fuji Absolute 1.9, Bianchi C Sport and Specialized Sirrus. Not sure of these bikes since they sport kind of lesser components as compared to the the top 3 entries here. Again, all are mostly hybrids without a front suspension. I guess these bikes offer better ergonomics, frame design, geometry and might be much smoother to ride than those three. Need advice on buying those (especially interested in the Trek) and suggestions for any other recommended models. Main concerns in this group being:
- Looks like I've to order them online.
- Concerns about service. Not at all sure where I can service Cannondale, ,Fuji, Specialized and Trek bikes.
- Not sure about the VFM aspect.

Seeking your advice on the above listed models, the ones at the last paragraph, whether to go for hybrids or MTB-s and whether to venture into the entry level road bikes category at all for commutes and daily rides.

Thanks for your patience- had a ton of these doubts in me for the longest time and couldn't find direct answers to these anywhere.

Last edited by evilmessiah : 15th December 2018 at 09:18.
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