On Rule #12: The Luxury of Passion

Rule #12 is a luxury of passion; the #1 for good weather and epic rides or races, the Nine Bike for bad weather, the Graveur (which is neither a cross bike nor a road bike), a ‘Cross bike, a mountain bike, a townie, a track bike, a time trial bike. Add in steel, carbon, titanium – a bike for each material and a material for each bike. The only logical conclusion is that we all need – need – a bare minimum of somewhere in the neighborhood of 25 bikes. Columbo couldn’t poke a hole in that case.

On the other hand, there is something to be said for just riding your bike wherever you happen to point it, in whatever weather you happen to be riding in, on whatever kind of road you happen to have at your disposal.

We should collect as many bikes as we can love, but we should also remember that bikes were meant to be ridden, not pampered. Vive la Vie Velominatus.

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84 Replies to “On Rule #12: The Luxury of Passion”

  1. @Oli

    Well you know, that didn’t faze me at all..simply thought of it as part of the grand presentation of these beautiful bikes.  You down under? I’m in Minnesota…  literally a stone’s throw away from where Greg LeMan lives. Lots of my buds know him. We don’t do drive bys of his house we do RIDE bys…

  2. @Lynn Pauly

    Well this pampered little princess is actually RIDDEN since she is only one of two… Yes, I’m looking to ADD; perhaps an INFINITO CV lies in my future… MAYBE. But it has to be the right color, of course.This sweet little greenie is known in these parts as The Duchess. No interloper will ever rank higher OR get more attention. .. believe me. She takes me wherever I want to go.. whenever. Rain or shine.

    Love the chromed stays and fork. Matching stem would be perfection.

  3. @The Grande Fondue

    @Lynn Pauly

    Well this pampered little princess is actually RIDDEN since she is only one of two… Yes, I’m looking to ADD; perhaps an INFINITO CV lies in my future… MAYBE. But it has to be the right color, of course.This sweet little greenie is known in these parts as The Duchess. No interloper will ever rank higher OR get more attention. .. believe me. She takes me wherever I want to go.. whenever. Rain or shine.

    Love the chromed stays and fork. Matching stem would be perfection.

    At least it’s a quill stem. And period correct: black stem (and bars) was the thing in the late 80s, early 90s. Almost a dead ringer for Fignon’s Gatorade-era Bianchis. But that Rule #41 issue needs addressing.

  4. @Ccos

    There’s a shop near work that sells recumbents, that it also sells bikes with huge wicker baskets attached to the bars with frames made out of scaffolding poles tells you all you need to know about the customer base, most of whom have ginger beards.

  5. @frank

    @the Engine

    The V-Bike can take much more than a 32mm tire. Its a fucking CX bike, you git. Can’t wait to smack you upside the head in Lille for not bringing a road bike on Keepers Tour!

    Did I mention I’m bringing two bikes? The Ridley may get a 52 or 53 up front this year so that I can blow my knees up properly.

  6. @Chris

    @the Engine

    @Chris

    @the Engine

    I’m not known as a bike pamperer

    Ivor, we’re not tri-athletes, comfort stops are allowed.

    …and I promise not to shit myself on the KT

    No, but Museeuw will if you turn up to ride with him on fat tyres and cross sized rings.

    @frank is right the KT isn’t about comfort bikes

    The V-CX bike is as fast on the road as my road bike and the 49 on the front gives me exactly the same ratios that I use on the road – just misses a few steps. CX is only for P-R obviously. It is an astonishing piece of kit.

  7. @Chris

    I’m currently at n = 3 but that a slightly simplistic way to look at it as 3 = r + m + b where r is road, m is mountain and b is bmx.

    I’ve had the mountainbike on ebay a couple of times recently but suspect that it was too close to Christmas. I’m not in a rush to get rid of it but if I got a decent price for it I’d put the cash towards another road bike. As for the bmx, I should probably put that on ebay as well an look for a cheap second hand cross bike.

    12 might be Frank’s magic number but I suspect that for most of us a realistic maximum would be 3, the #1, a dual purpose cross/graveur and a nine bike. Or the #1, a cross bike and a dual purpose graveur/nine bike. Or combinations thereof.

    That’s about where I’m at. My N = 3 for the most part, and I manage to cover most niches okay.

    #1 is the plastic fantastic Bianchi Vertigo, the pure go-fast bike

    #3 is a rather nice aluminum hardtail for going well off the path

    and in between we have this:

    which given my absurdly large stock of old parts can be whatever I want it to be from week to week. Given some 42c knobblies and it’ll run cross pretty well, 25c tubulars and it’ll run road just fine, 38mm and fenders and a rack and it’ll get me to work or across the state. It’ll even take downtube shifters if I feel like doing that.

  8. @the Engine

    @Chris

    @the Engine

    @Chris

    @the Engine

    I’m not known as a bike pamperer

    Ivor, we’re not tri-athletes, comfort stops are allowed.

    …and I promise not to shit myself on the KT

    No, but Museeuw will if you turn up to ride with him on fat tyres and cross sized rings.

    @frank is right the KT isn’t about comfort bikes

    The V-CX bike is as fast on the road as my road bike and the 49 on the front gives me exactly the same ratios that I use on the road – just misses a few steps. CX is only for P-R obviously. It is an astonishing piece of kit.

    That says more about how fast you ride your road bike than it does about versatility or gear ratios.

  9. @brett

    Oh my goodness.. yes this is a 92.. I must look up #41. A little far down on the list … #5 and #9 are very much my concern… as my friends are wont to point out as well. Very often. And shut up legs. I will check out 41!

  10. @frank

    We should collect as many bikes as we can love, but we should also remember that bikes were meant to be ridden, not pampered. Vive la Vie Velominatus.

    that place where the VMH just shakes her head. Steel, frank forgot aluminum, carbon, and ti. Bases covered. Road, CX, MTB, SS. Bases covered. Actively looking for N+1.

  11. @frank

    @the Engine

    The V-Bike can take much more than a 32mm tire. Its a fucking CX bike, you git. Can’t wait to smack you upside the head in Lille for not bringing a road bike on Keepers Tour!

    Road bikes only at Keepers Tour! I thought that was an established rule.

  12. The latest folly. Steel. Chain (Izumi super toughness) matching text on the downtube (both are gold, an homage to Fausto Coppi’s hour record machine). In addition to satiating Rule #12 interests, I’ve also noticed that track riders tend to be a little bigger than the road rider. Which means I’ve okayed a certain laxness in my diet. For power, you know…

  13. @RedRanger

    @frank

    @the Engine

    The V-Bike can take much more than a 32mm tire. Its a fucking CX bike, you git. Can’t wait to smack you upside the head in Lille for not bringing a road bike on Keepers Tour!

    Road bikes only at Keepers Tour! I thought that was an established rule.

    An unspoken one, that might need to be spoken…

    @Lynn Pauly

    @brett

    Oh my goodness.. yes this is a 92.. I must look up #41. A little far down on the list … #5 and #9 are very much my concern… as my friends are wont to point out as well. Very often. And shut up legs. I will check out 41!

    I think you are addressing @pistard there, but that bike is a beauty!

  14. @Steampunk

    Classy looking bike! Love the bits of chrome and silver with the black and white. Are those Cafe Domestique frames built by Marinoni?

  15. @pistard

    Good eye: Marinoni build. Here’s a shot pre-chain addition.

    My question, though: track gearing seems to be measured in inches. How does the Velominatus handle such conversations? By following along? By translating into metric? Or by just Rule V: gears don’t matter.

    [dmalbum: path=”/velominati.com/wp-content/uploads/readers/Steampunk/2015.02.02.05.09.28/1//”/]

  16. @Steampunk

    I’ve done just a few track sessions and I could get hooked, particularly on crappy winter days like the last weekend.  Started browsing for an old steel frame for the next project though I’d better finish the current one first!  I’m a little over an hour from Calshot which apparently is the second tightest track in the world.  The tightest is, I believe, somewhere in Canada.

    The banking is at a claimed 45% and tight enough to feel the G (V?) Force pushing you down if you hold below the red line at speed.

  17. @Steampunk

    No, just a guess. A friend was looking into their road frame and thought it might be Marinoni. I do see quite a few Nonis, new and old, around here.

    The metric system for gearing is “metres of development” which is the distance travelled for one rotation of the cranks. MoD = drive wheel circumference (in metres) x chainring teeth/cog teeth.

    Sheldon Brown’s “gain ratio” is a system that hasn’t really made it into popular use, but accounts for crank length. It’s the total distance travelled divided by the distance travelled (in a circle) by the pedals during one rotation. GR = drive wheel radius/crank length x chainring teeth/cog teeth. The result is a ratio independent of measurement units.

  18. @pistard

    @Steampunk

    That’s just way too much math. Feel like you’re spinning? Smaller cog or bigger ring. Feel like your knees are going to explode? Bigger cog or smaller ring or you’re just getting old.

  19. There’s some nice looking bikes in this thread and it makes me think that my 1 Road and 1 MTB bike are not enough, but my wallet says otherwise :-) But I think I can squeeze in a Single speed purchase this year!

    Somehow I have always survived with 1 bike and I even took my racing bike on a camping trip around the Coromandel peninsular here in NZ once. I was racing at the time, so riding to Whangamata from Auckland with a tent and small backpack on my road bike seemed like a good idea. Great fun and I wish I could do it again but i need something family orientated so I can take my daughter on some cycling holidays.

  20. @Teocalli

    @Steampunk

    I’ve done just a few track sessions and I could get hooked, particularly on crappy winter days like the last weekend.  Started browsing for an old steel frame for the next project though I’d better finish the current one first!  I’m a little over an hour from Calshot which apparently is the second tightest track in the world.  The tightest is, I believe, somewhere in Canada.

    The banking is at a claimed 45% and tight enough to feel the G (V?) Force pushing you down if you hold below the red line at speed.

    Riding a short, steep track like that is insanely fun, once you get past the vertigo. The Canadian drome you mention is in London, Ontario. Built into a pre-existing structure, hence its size. Its original incarnation (hockey rink, naturally) saw Johnny Cash propose to June Carter — on stage in the middle of a concert.

  21. @pistard

    @Steampunk

    No, just a guess. A friend was looking into their road frame and thought it might be Marinoni. I do see quite a few Nonis, new and old, around here.

    The metric system for gearing is “metres of development” which is the distance travelled for one rotation of the cranks. MoD = drive wheel circumference (in metres) x chainring teeth/cog teeth.

    Sheldon Brown’s “gain ratio” is a system that hasn’t really made it into popular use, but accounts for crank length. It’s the total distance travelled divided by the distance travelled (in a circle) by the pedals during one rotation. GR = drive wheel radius/crank length x chainring teeth/cog teeth. The result is a ratio independent of measurement units.

    Since we all use 700c wheels on our road bikes (and most of us use the same tyre size as well) it’s a good-enough approximation to just use the teeth ratio. Crank length is insignificant anyway for those calculations, unless you like to measure your muscle contraction velocity.

  22. @Steampunk

    Brilliant.  Sounds like it’s quite near you!

    I’m quite fortunate to live about 800 metres away from where Jack Bobridge had a crack at the Hour Record last weekend.

    Gear inches.  Always gear inches.  It’s tradition going back some hunnert years.

    If you tell of racing on a 94 inch gear, people at the velodrome will know what you’re speaking of.  Any other complicated re-calculations will just confuse people.

  23. @Steampunk

    @tessar

    @mouse

    Yes, always speak gear inches at the track. Tooth ratios mark you as a roadie or fixie kid. I only mentioned other systems because math.

    51×16, 48×15 and 45×14 are pretty much the same, but it’s easier to say 94 inches.

    And as @mouse says, gear inches is the oldest standard. Obvious when it was the diameter of your high-wheel; now we have to whip ’em out and download an app.

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