The Bikes

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The Bike. It is the central tool in pursuit of our craft. A Velominatus meticulously maintains their bicycles and adorns them with the essential, yet minimal, accoutrement. The Rules specify the principles of good taste in configuration and setup of our machines, but within those principles lies almost infinite room for personal taste.

It seems in some ways like a kind of Stockholm Syndrome, the way we honor our machines. We love them to a point that lies well beyond obsession. Upon these machines upon we endure endless suffering, but also find an unending pleasure. The rhythm, the harmony between rider and machine, the outdoors, the wind in our faces and air in our lungs.

The Bikes is devoted entirely to our machines. Ours, The Keepers, and yours, the Community. It features articles devoted to our bikes, and proves a forum for uploading photos of your own machines for discussion. We will be harsh, but fair; this is a place to enforce and enhance our observation of The Rules.

If you’d like to submit an article about your own beloved bike, please feel free to send it to us and we’ll do our best to work with you to include it.

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  1. @il muro di manayunk

    Speaking of which, working on your custom paint now.

    @peakingintwoyears – what tape is it? fi'zi:k? I have some stuff sent to me from ZA that is also a good match. Been tempted for ages to try it but can’t bring myself not to have white or black bars on my bike.

  2. @Ron

    That’s a classic. Why oh why did you tell him? Prime opportunity to get some on the cheap!!

    @unversio

    Diggin the new avatar.

  3. @Ron

    Cool, I was just offering a word of caution. Glad you are getting great use out of the bike. Sometimes the gruppos on the big store bikes are worth buying the whole thing and then just using the frame for whatever.

    I gotcha, wife, house, vacations…I too am no longer a single grad student who thinks it’s okay to buy three road bikes a year. Well I actually do, I just can’t direct the money towards such endeavors any more.

    s – 1 was ever thus.

  4. @Roger

    @Ron

    All good I appreciate it, I just got the frame and threw parts at it.

    Then added the Dura Ace tubeless wheelset and it has transformed the bike.

    Not a bad ride for only having $800 into it

    Nothing will transform a bike like a good set of wheels. I’ll take carbon wheels on shimano 105 groupsan any day over DA with stock wheels.

  5. @Barracuda

    Rescued an old and rusty kids bike and resto’d it for my 3 yar old son.  Touch of the “V” influence going on.  Now just to await the ordered V decals and its done.

    Good job ditching the purely cosmetic suspension fork. Advise that you take off the cranks along with the training wheels, and set it up as a balance bike.

  6. @frank

    Right on! Sounds like I’ll be able to have it all built up in time for the beginning of the season.

  7. @Nate

    Agree about the stabilisers, all they do is teach kids how *not* to balance on a bike, dump them and the cranks and let him learn to scoot around first and the illogical steering into a lean rather than against it that is the essence of keeping upright on a bike.

  8. @frank

    @Roger

    @Ron

    All good I appreciate it, I just got the frame and threw parts at it.

    Then added the Dura Ace tubeless wheelset and it has transformed the bike.

    Not a bad ride for only having $800 into it

    Nothing will transform a bike like a good set of wheels. I’ll take carbon wheels on shimano 105 groupsan any day over DA with stock wheels.

    I bought my bike in November and I’m already aspiring to upgrade it (obviously) but the only component I really think worth spending anything on is wheels.

    Mine’s a basic alu 105 type bike (Felt F75), what sort of wheel upgrade would be worthwhile? And how much £?

    Probably a ‘how long is a bit of string’ type question.

  9. @frank

    No doubt, the difference is significant in so many ways

  10. @RobSandy

    @frank

    @Roger

    @Ron

    All good I appreciate it, I just got the frame and threw parts at it.

    Then added the Dura Ace tubeless wheelset and it has transformed the bike.

    Not a bad ride for only having $800 into it

    Nothing will transform a bike like a good set of wheels. I’ll take carbon wheels on shimano 105 groupsan any day over DA with stock wheels.

    I bought my bike in November and I’m already aspiring to upgrade it (obviously) but the only component I really think worth spending anything on is wheels.

    Mine’s a basic alu 105 type bike (Felt F75), what sort of wheel upgrade would be worthwhile? And how much £?

    Probably a ‘how long is a bit of string’ type question.

    Really depends on budget, how you ride, how big are you etc. I picked up my Dura Ace Wheels for a few hundred bucks used from a local, the wheels new are like a $1000. If you wait and search a really good use set of high end wheels can be had for a reasonable price, carbon is nice, but you can also have a pretty light set custom built for the $600-800 range, check out the Bike Hub Store, he know his stuff and the components are pretty good.

  11. @frank

    @Ron

    Cool, I was just offering a word of caution. Glad you are getting great use out of the bike. Sometimes the gruppos on the big store bikes are worth buying the whole thing and then just using the frame for whatever.

    I gotcha, wife, house, vacations…I too am no longer a single grad student who thinks it’s okay to buy three road bikes a year. Well I actually do, I just can’t direct the money towards such endeavors any more.

    s – 1 was ever thus.

    I didn’t really mean that. Just getting the 20% together for purchasing our house, so I strayed a bit. But, it was only momentary. I’ll be living in n+1 mindset once again as soon as our mortgage is secured. My apologies.

  12. Do the grips and the saddle follow the rules?

  13. @JCM

    Was once a keg of beer, neatly converted into a beer cooler, with a flip top lid!  Great for parties , just roll in out to the pergola and throw a bag of ice in it and just add some ales !

  14. @Nate

    Tried the balance bike route, sadly he wouldn’t go for it, built this little beast up and its hard to get him off it.  You win some and you loose some.   Agree with the balance bike theory though.  If I could keep him on the balance bike we’d be on a winner, but riding a pedalled / trainer wheeled bike as opposed to no bike at all is a good compromise.

  15. Dropout reverence.

  16. @Barracuda

    @Nate

    Tried the balance bike route, sadly he wouldn’t go for it, built this little beast up and its hard to get him off it.  You win some and you loose some.   Agree with the balance bike theory though.  If I could keep him on the balance bike we’d be on a winner, but riding a pedalled / trainer wheeled bike as opposed to no bike at all is a good compromise.

    I had the same with my daughter initially with a balance bikes. She wasnt keen but I kept trying and took her to a different park where there was a very gentle slope. She was able to ride it without too much effort and from then on it was all good. The next time at the park she was zooming around and going across a low skateboard bowl, and then down the ramp onto the skateboard bowl as her confidence built up.

    Now she has a bigger bike but I had to put trainers on it as it was slightly too big for her, so we have gone backwards. But I took them off the other week and I am building her confidence in riding a pedal bike without trainers.

  17. Article/video explaining the TT bike that Thomas Dekker used at yesterday’s hour record attempt. 30’000 EUR, custom made of course. Tubes with silk in it, which you can throw away after the hour.

    http://www.rtlxl.nl/#!/u/3e815cfd-6aa7-6d4e-8f5f-226aaee6ae7c

  18. @tessar

    @Ron

    The annoying answer is probably “It depends”. I use latex on my racing wheels but skimp out on the training ones, which means they get very intermittent riding at times. Last time I raced mine was October. In between I try to pump them every once in a while but I don’t always get around to it so they sit flat quite often.

    So far, I noticed two problems:

    1. If you leave them with sealant in (which works better on latex than on butyl tubes, it’s no a bad idea), it can eventually glue the tube to itself if left flat. I had two tubes burst on the initial pumping after a few months off.
    2. Latex is very supple, so if you leave it flat and then pump again, the tyre can move and wiggle a bit, causing a pinch. I’ve heard of riders who had the tube wiggle into gaps in the rim tape, again causing flats.

    A good article on latex problems and solutions: http://austintriathlonstore.blogspot.co.il/2015/01/latex-tubes.html

    Quick question. Except puncture during the race, why would you want to repair clincher inner tubes, be it latex or butyl, with sealant. Surely patching them is easier and more effective.

    Also there is no rule that sealant works better with latex than with butyl.

    There are many sealants on the market now and some work better with latex, while others don’t.

    If you’re interested check tests below, tried most of the sealants tested there myself and had very similar findings. Generally I hate using sealants myself but just wanted to see what works better and what not. My main concern were tubulars of course. Don’t see a point of using sealant on clinchers.

    http://www.slowtwitch.com/Products/Things_that_Roll/Tires/Sealant_Test_-_Part_1_4147.html

    http://www.slowtwitch.com/Products/Things_that_Roll/Tires/Sealant_Test_-_Part_2_4155.html

  19. its nearly 4 years since my significant neck injury and Im happy that as of last night Ive got my stem back to a more respectable level, the bike handles completely different and am pleased that can get it looking good once again.

  20. Photo upload issues

  21. @Barracuda

    can see all 3, not complaining though. Bike looks good in each one (though if I’m being picky I could point out the bidon related Rule #26 infraction).

  22. @Barracuda

    Photo upload issues

    all three photos look good!

  23. @Mikael Liddy

    @Barracuda

    can see all 3, not complaining though. Bike looks good in each one (though if I’m being picky I could point out the bidon related Rule #26 infraction).

    Sorry about that, no photos showing my end.  Shit internet no doubt.

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