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      12-02-2011, 03:42 PM   #41
Comrade Vlad
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Drives: 1999 M3, 2006 325i
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Connecticut

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1999 BMW M3  [4.50]
2006 BMW 325i  [5.00]
After riding about 50 miles last weekend, it seems that K2 Astral 2.0 bike should be great for now. After first couple rides, I took to SA so they cound adjust it, and now it rides even better.

It also seems that I enjoy trails more than plain roads, so I'm going to give up an idea of road bike for now, and just stick with my hybrid and mtb.

Originally Posted by KingOfJericho View Post
I have Specialized gloves for the summer (open fingertips) and pearl izumi full finger gloves that I've been wearing recently and have kept me warm. I will switch to the MTB because they put quite a bit of sand on the roads and the amount of potholes increases tenfold in the winter months. Those tiny narrow tires have such a small contact patch that a few wet leaves or a patch of sand can put you down.

Also, if you're doing 20+ miles on roads and really enjoying it, you would be completely justified in spending a bit more for a higher performance bike from a legitimate bike shop. Just throwing it out there. For about a grand you can get a very nice aluminum frame Trek or alike which will transfer your effort to the road quite a bit better.
Pearl Izumi stuff is great. Just got pair of Pro Softshell Lite gloves last week for colder weather. Also got second scull cap and biking shorts. Last weekend the weather was so great (50-60) and I could not ride two days in a row because my shorts did not dry. So, I bought second (better) pair.

Even though idea of higher performance bike from bike shop sounds great, but I might have to stick with lower end bike. I gotta keep low profile, as my wife still does not know I bought second bike

Diamondback Topanga - has some great reviews. And the price was sweet on Black Friday at only $350.

I might reconsider exchanging it for Diamondback Overdrive 29".

Originally Posted by xindigo View Post
Where do you store your bike? I'd love to start biking but I don't know if I could bare the thought of storing my bike amongst my newly purchased furniture! Really lacking in garage facilities!
I have a garage, so I just park it next to the wall.
There are several bike storage solutions out there. You can find hooks, wall holders, ceiling holders, so you can store it almost anywhere.

Originally Posted by Kyoshi71 View Post
I've been hard-core mountain biking for about 12 years now. My friends and I all swear by Santa Cruz. The "Blur" is just insane.

Anything else is just.......
That looks just like the bike I returned to SA
Santa Cruz look like serious bikes, but out of my budget. May be one day...

Originally Posted by carve View Post
Agreed- Santa Cruz is awesome. I got a Blur when they first came out in '03 and have ridden the piss out of that thing. Still an awesome bike- far from obsolete. I wanted to try a 29er though so now I'm on a Tallboy.

For riding both on and off road, if you want any kind of decent performance, get a dedicated road and mountain bike. The next best solution is a mountain bike with a seperate set of wheels for road tires though. By the time you get wheels, tires, rotors, skewers, and a cassette though, it's usually cheaper just to get an inexpensive 8 year old entry level road bike, and that'll give you much better performance.

I wouldn't bother with incrimental upgrades at Sports Authority. If you want to get into riding, get the best bike you can justify. Ride the hell out of it until it's worn out, or until you want to do a SIGNIFICANT upgrade. All of my bikes have been 50-120% more expensive than the ones they replaced. If they weren't...just keep riding what you have until it's worn out.

For a winter glove, I like Castelli, but there are a lot of good choices out there, including whatever you have lying around in a pinch.

Regarding your crash- I think a lot of beginners treat a bike like a car...sit on it...jam on the controls...hit stuff. Really, a bike is a lot closer to a pair of skis, skates, or even a pair of shoes than a car or motorcycle. You really have to feel what it's doing through your feet and adjust how much weight you put on each wheel, adjust your cg fore and aft for maximum stability and traction depending on how hard you're braking or how steep you're climbing, etc. Really relax and let the bike float over the terrein. Don't panic in a skid. Relax, feel the balance, and ride it out. You may want to practice skidding in a gravel lot.

Imagine running towards a curb. You just don't run right at it, crash into it with your feet, and brace for impact. At the instant your feet would hit the curb you bend your knees to pull your feet up and set them gently down on top of it, then extend your knees to stand up. It's the same on a bike.

Same with braking. When you run and need to stop really fast, you don't just stop your feet- you lean back first. If you're on a slippery surface and your shoes start to skid you just have to feel what's happening and adjust your balance accordingly.

Also...cornering; during low speed cornering you just turn the bar the direction you want to go, but when you go fast cornering is mostly done by leaning. It's in the knees, feet, and hips. Put your outside pedal down, put your weight on your pedals, and point your knees and hips the direction you want to go.
The connection with the bike is getting better every time I ride.
Thank you for the pointers, I'll try to remember and practice them next time I ride.

I do like my new k2 astral 2.0 bike. It might not be the greates one out there, but I think it is very decent for beginner like myself.

How does 29" compares to regular 26"? How different does it feel?

I got DB Topanga (also at SA on black friday), but thinking if I should exchange it for DB Overdrive.

For now, better bikes are off the table. May be when I worn these out.

Originally Posted by Burrnerd View Post
Im in my mid 40s and have been riding to work for 8 years now. I live 16km from my office and the route is mostly scenic bike paths along a river. It takes me 37 minutes, plus or minus 5 depending on wind and load.

I bike 3-seasons. Proper equipment is vital and I always check the weather before going out (forecast always exaggerates). I use plenty of layers because I hate the cold. It gets dark early this time of year so I wear retroreflective material on my clothing, helmet and bike. I have be seen lights, front and rear, plus a serious 300-lumen Cygolite headlight mounted on my helmet to detect the camouflaged dog walkers sharing the path.

My current ride see below is a flat-bar road bike with good components (some XTR) customized by a local bike shop. Note that this photo was taken before I put some 22,000km on the bike. Lots of worn parts replaced and I added a softer saddle and Cateye computer for cadence. No front derailleur/shifter now because of limited hills on my commute.

I count my days cycling and last year was a personal best of 137 days. NO EXCUSES except vacation, business travel and snow-covered roads. Yesterday was Day 117 for 2011, but sadly snow has arrived and that is depressing, which suggests that cycling can be an addiction. Better dust off those skis.
Wow, that does sounds like you enjoy riding very much! That is great! Do you ride to work on regular roads, or you ride trails?

I wish there was a trail to my work, I would be riding to work on warm sunny days.
1999 E36 ///M3 Convertible MT Silver / Silver (99.99% stock)
2006 E90 325i