Jump to content








Photo

I FINALLY Rode My New Bike! Unfortunately, it was a disaster....


  • Please log in to reply
22 replies to this topic

#1 SierraSlim

SierraSlim

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 600 posts

Posted 30 November 2010 - 04:48 PM

Hey, Y'all!

 

I got back from Maui a week ago (and had an AWESOME time, thanks for asking, but what other kind of time can you have in Paradise, lol?).  Because I got a bad cold from a fellow traveler on the way back, I ended up not being able to go get my bike until late yesterday afternoon.

 

I just came back from my first real ride on her.  I so wanted it to be a great ride, and I wanted desperately to be able to get on her and brag on here about how wonderful it was....  but unfortunately, it wasn't!     I came home and cried because it was not even close to the ride I had hoped for.   Part of it was that it was cold out, and though I dressed as well as I could, I don't yet have proper riding clothes for damp cold weather -- especially when you're used to Maui weather.  (You can read my rant on women's biking clothes in the rant section if you'd like, lol.)   But the seat hurt my woman parts, my wrists hurt almost the entire time (and had NEVER hurt on my cruiser), and the bike was so light-weight that the ride felt jittery, and I had a hard time keeping her going straight and where I wanted her to go. 

 

I'm also learning how to mount a bike for the first time, since I can't just sit on her and start pedaling like I did on the cruiser.  So every time I stopped and got off to lower the front of the seat to try to make it stop hurting, and then to raise the seat itself so my leg could extend further, and then to try to pull a scarf over my ears and zip my jacket higher, and then stop at the stop signs, I had to try the 'proper' method of getting started.  It looks easy enough; you put the pedal in the 10:00 position, step up on it and get going, and then sit on the seat, right?  (At least that's what everybody keeps showing me.)  Well, I seem to have an anatomical problem with that, which is that I have a J-Lo butt -- and then some.      And when I step up on the pedal, the back of my butt hits the front of the seat, and it knocks me off balance.  So I'm struggling with the basic beginning of a bike ride, which doesn't do much for my confidence, and embarrasses me immeasurably when drivers passing by are watching.  Sigh... I'll work on it. 

 

The seat hurting was a bit of a surprise, though even my cruiser seat never quit hurting no matter how used to it I was.  I will keep adjusting it and give it a while to get used to it, and if it keeps hurting I'll try another one.  I think this seat is considered a 'unisex' model; it looks very much like my husband's saddle! 

 

But my WRISTS hurting -- that was a shock, since they never hurt on the cruiser at all.  They didn't hurt when I rode the test bikes, either, but then I only rode them around the parking lot a couple of times.  They started hurting pretty early on in this ride, and nothing I did seemed to help other than sitting more upright and barely holding on to them, which of course didn't feel very safe.  I had listed an adjustable stem as one of the things I wanted on a bike, but this bike doesn't have one, so I doubt that the bars can be raised much at all.  I think that's what needs to happen, so that I'm not leaning so far forward on them.  So I'm pretty concerned about that, because I'm not sure what can be done. 

 

The jitteriness of the ride is no doubt just due to my being a new rider.  I've never had tires this thin or a bike this lightweight before, so it's a very different ride than my cruiser, and it's something I just have to get used to.  But I kept wondering where that "It feels like I'm flying!" feeling was that I remember thinking on the test ride in the parking lot.

 

So... I came home and cried, all disappointed and worried that I've bought the wrong bike even after all my research, and then had a hot cup of chai tea and listened to some soothing music, and am trying to give myself a pep talk about how all this will be easily fixed and I'll love her soon as much as I did my cruiser. 

 

But right now, I'm pretty disappointed. 

 

Thanks for listening. 

 

Sierra















#2 BHOFM

BHOFM

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 571 posts

Posted 30 November 2010 - 06:02 PM

If the test ride was fine, and you bought the same bike as you tested, it just needs some adjusting I am

sure.

 

Cold and damp doesn't help! Wait for a nice day and try again.

 

Post a pic of the handle bars, If it is like the one in the post, "I bought my bike" you did, the stem should

come up some and the bars and be turned so the grips are higher, and maybe the seat is too high.

If it is not a custom built, there may be some compromises you will have to deal with. It just takes time.

 

When I got my new seat, I stopped five times in the first two miles and readjusted it. Now I can do fifty miles

and never think about the seat.

 

Slipping on the seat sounds like the seat is too high. And the back of the seat may need to be higher than

the front. Seats are cheap, don't let that stand in your way.


I am old, fat and ugly, but I have 20 million dollars so it don't matter!

#3 MMMhills

MMMhills

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 206 posts

Posted 30 November 2010 - 06:16 PM

Find a local bike shop that can do a proper fit for you.  Then go out when the weather is nice and go for short rides.  Work the distance up as your body gets used to it.  Riding should be fun.  I hope this helps.



#4 kdelong

kdelong

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 3,475 posts

Posted 30 November 2010 - 07:37 PM

What both previous posters said! A cold day is not the day to get acquainted with your new bike. The cold air affects your joints and can affect the comfort of your saddle. Also, the fact that you have been off a bike for 2+ weeks is a factor, as is coming from summer-like temperatures to late fall temperatures. You definitely need to get to your LBS and have them help you set up the bike. Practice your mounts if that is the way you want to do them. I straddle my bike and then pop into the saddle as I start to pedal. My lady friend mounts the way that you have described. Anyway, don't blame the bike. Just get it adjusted and get used to it and you will feel like you are "flying" again.


One life, one chance. Don't waste it!

#5 SierraSlim

SierraSlim

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 600 posts

Posted 30 November 2010 - 09:21 PM

Thanks, y'all.

 

Brad, I will try to post pics of my handlebars tomorrow, since they're not the same as the stock photo I published.  Also, somebody smart on here had said that because my bike has a quill type stem, the bars should be easy to change if I need, so will keep that in mind.  The different bars also undoubtedly affected how comfortable I felt with the ride, because they are narrower than the cruiser bars I was used to, which probably changes the way I balance.   I remember the test ride on this bike being great (it had wider bars).  The seat hurt a LITTLE at that time, but my bottom had been hurting since the initial test ride on a different bike 3 bikes earlier, which had a hard skinny seat that had practically assaulted me, and I attributed the lesser pain on this bike to leftovers of that at the time.  But as you said, I'll figure out the seat I need, and that's an easy change. 

 

MMMHills, the bike had been fitted to me before I bought it, with a thorough, 3-hour fitting session, and they left tape on all the adjustable parts on the bike so I can see where the seat and posts should go, according to their records.  But the bike I tested on was a medium, and this is a large with different handlebars, so things may need readjusted, all right.  You are right that I will need to get used to riding again, since it has been almost 2 months since I was able to ride.  And I had only BEEN riding for a couple months prior to that at all, so it really is like starting over for me.  I will hope the weather warms up quickly, and will start slow and just try to enjoy it like I had been on my cruiser. 

 

KD, I had not thought about the cold affecting my joints and the comfort of the saddle, but I'm sure glad you did!  And I will definitely be practicing my mounts to get my big booty into that saddle more gracefully and securely.  I'm sure you're right, it's not the bike, it's the rider.... sigh, lol.... who needs to get her head on straight, her butt tucked in, and her eyes back on how much fun riding is once you know your steed! 

 

Thanks for the encouragement, y'all.  I'll try her again tomorrow, weather willing, and remember that I was shaky even on the cruiser for the first few times. 

 

Will keep you posted.  Happy pedaling, all!

 

 



#6 Steve_A

Steve_A

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 246 posts

Posted 01 December 2010 - 04:12 AM

Sierra, I'm sorry to hear that you're having such a hard time with the new bike.  Like everyone else has said, it will get better with proper adjustment and fitting.  Thoughts on your bars:  If it's a quill stem (good), you may need to replace the stem with higher one to get the bars up.  I'm waiting to see a picture of what you've got.  Your wrists are hurting because you're putting more weight on them, which is because your bars are too low and/or too far from your seat.  Also, if your bars are the typical straight kind that mtn bikes have, your wrists are now oriented with the inside facing down.  Your cruiser no doubt had bars with the handgrips about 90 degrees to what you have now. That gives you a different hand/wrist position,  which some say is more comfortable.  I recommend that you go to the Rivendell site and read about the different types of bars that they have there.  You may want something more like that. (Albatross, Dove) You don't have to buy their bars, you would probably want to deal through your LBS anyway.  Bottom line is,  you can put any type of bar, with as high a stem as you want, on your bike.  All of the bars that you would consider (i.e. most anything except drop bars) should be easy to change using your existing brake levers and shifter. 

 

Saddles are very personal, obviously.  Maybe the LBS can let you try some others; they're easy to swap. 

 

I'm a little concerned that the bike you rode at the LBS felt so wonderful, but they ordered a larger frame and now this.  When you go back to them to adjust your position on the new bike, see if you can ride the other one again.  Maybe it's a better fit for you after all.  The shop should want to make things right for you, one way or another.  Chin up, Steve



#7 davereo

davereo

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,639 posts

Posted 01 December 2010 - 08:08 AM

All good advice above.  Steve is probably spot on with the hand position of the bars. Your cruiser grips are most likely more of a natural hand position for you so you had little discomfort with them.  Also your old saddle was never an issue that I recall.  You have the option of mounting these or new ones just like them on your bike.  You will then find yourself in a familiar riding position that you can upgrade gradually to your new parts. Helping you select a new bike was the hard job.  Getting you comfortable should be a little easier.

 

I again want to also weigh in on Steve's concerns about the larger frame.  This is not the frame size you test road and the smaller frame may fit you better.  All things considered you should mention this to the bike shop and go for another test ride on the medium.  Hopefully they will swap this bike if the medium is a better fit. 



#8 SierraSlim

SierraSlim

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 600 posts

Posted 01 December 2010 - 10:29 AM

Thanks, guys.

 

I'm feeling a little better about it this morning after a good night's sleep.  Dear Hubby is going to see if he can raise the handlebars a bit and maybe even turn the stem around backward (?) to help bring the bars a little closer.  He will also lower the seat and angle the front down a tad.  We're going shopping today for fenders and a basket -- I'm just going with basic black metal for both until I get comfortable on her, because I don't want to scratch up the hammered brass ones I'm planning on buying, lol, while I'm learning to mount her.   Then I'm going to dress better for the chill and take a leisurely ride on her this afternoon, and try to just get used to how she feels.  If after a few days of getting used to the thinner tires and lighter bike I'm still not happy, then we'll head back to the bike shop as suggested. 

 

I appreciate all your suggestions and helpful advice.  I'll get it resolved, one way or another.  Biking is too much fun not to! 

 

Sierra 

 



#9 64Paramount

64Paramount

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,640 posts

Posted 01 December 2010 - 02:12 PM

Hang in there, Sierra!

 

You've just got a few minor issues to get through and then you'll be fine.

 

You haven't ridden in awhile do to health issues and vacation, so you're kinda starting over again. Except this time your starting out with a different bike, so I suspect that's adding a bit more stress to the situation.

 

Just keep after it, you'll be fine!

 


Sometimes you may have to look very close to see it, but a measure of grace exists within us all..

#10 Steve_A

Steve_A

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 246 posts

Posted 01 December 2010 - 02:35 PM

I don't know about turning the stem around; I can't imagine what that would do to the steering geometry. If you need it that much closer, go get that smaller frame.  Otherwise, good luck!

Steve



#11 davereo

davereo

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,639 posts

Posted 01 December 2010 - 03:43 PM

Do not attempt to reverse your stem this is not a safe practice and should be avoided.  The large frame may be suited to your hieght and reach but not to any of your limitations such as previous injurys.  The medium frame most likely suits your make up better and you should attempt to return the bike before making any changes to it.  

 

May I also suggest that you sort out all these issues with your bike on a trainer.  If both you and you husband are getting into cycling a trainer would amount to a good investment that both of you could use. This way here you can work through your mechanical and conditioning issues in a safe place. If I am not mistaking Nashbar has a fluid trainer on sale for 159.00 right now. Could make a nice holiday gift for hubby that you could use.                      difficult weather periods



#12 sitzmark

sitzmark

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 472 posts

Posted 01 December 2010 - 04:17 PM

Turning the stem around was something we did in our youth to "do something unique" with out bikes.  It changes the point of leverage and depending on the configuration of your bars can create interferences.  Not a solution for your long term goals.  The stem is most likely much longer than the adjustment you need and will make much more of reach adjustment than a one size drop in frame.

 

It doesn't take a lot of additional weight on your arms to generate fatigue and some discomfort.  It could be something you'll have to "get used to".  Obviously extreme pain or discomfort isn't something to tolerate, but if it isn't too bad you may want to give it a few rides and see if your body adjusts.  Muscular pain from working new muscle groups is one thing ... joint pain is something altogether different and you should be more cautious. 

 

From the picture you posted of your new bike, it doesn't look like a design that puts the bars below the seat, which is a configuration that would put much more stress on your wrists/forearms.  If the seat is below the height of the bar, it could be that the position of your hands is foreign and vibrations from the road are aggravating tendons/muscles.  Be cautious either way, but judge by the type and severity of pain.

 

With the amount of attention to detail you said your LBS went to to help you demo and measure you for fit, they are surely the type of shop that will make sure you have the right outcome.

 

Hope everything is sorted out soon!



#13 SierraSlim

SierraSlim

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 600 posts

Posted 01 December 2010 - 05:31 PM

Steve, and Dave, and Sitzmark,

 

Hey, y'all!  There's nothing like THREE experts warning against something to make sure I don't do it, lol.  Thanks for that, though.  When I told Humble Hubby that you three advised against it, he admitted quickly that bikes have changed in the 50 years since he was a kid and had done it, lol, and also was quick to grasp that even if he did it, it probably would be much more adjustment than I needed.  So the idea was quickly tossed, and once again my buddies on here save the day.  Thanks!

 

I was comfortable enough on today's ride (see my other post) that we may change nothing else with the bars.  He has raised them as much to the maximum-limit sign on the stem.   I'll give it a few weeks to get totally familiar with her and see if the wrist pain continues to subside.  If it doesn't, we'll see about replacing the stem or getting different handlebars.  Even Frugal Hubby said that he didn't have a problem with doing that if we needed to, bless his heart.  I took pictures this evening and will try to post them below, Steve, so you can see what kind they are. 

 

Thanks again for all your help, amigos.  We won't ruin the bike after all, lol.

 

Have a good one!



#14 SierraSlim

SierraSlim

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 600 posts

Posted 01 December 2010 - 05:41 PM

005.JPG

006.JPG

007.JPG

004.JPG008.JPG

 

Here are the pictures of my bike, Steve.  Hope this helps; I wasn't sure what angle you wanted. 



#15 BHOFM

BHOFM

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 571 posts

Posted 01 December 2010 - 09:55 PM

I read the other post, glad it is getting better.

 

With that type of bar, just a little twist will move the grips

closer or farther way so you can tweak them to suit your

needs.

 

I would get an allen wrench to fit the bolts and carry it

with me till I got them just right , also get a wrench to

fit your seat adjustment bolt and carry it as well. You

can pick up a cheapie at any hardware or auto parts

store for a couple dollars. You don't need a professional

tool, high $$.

 

The shorter the handle bars, the quicker the steering

response is, so that is what is throwing you a bit on

the darting about.

 

One other thing, when you are nervous, you tend to

grip the bars tighter, white knuckle, and this can lead

to hand and wrist problems, just relax and enjoy the

ride.

 

We all have to find the best way to mount, there is no

right or wrong.

 

My neighbor puts his left foot on the left pedal and runs, hops

down the street as fast as he can and them leaps on the bike.

He always starts in the lowest gear the bike has and pedals like

mad and shifts and pedals like mad and shifts and pedals like

mad, it is really funny. He claims to be a health nut, all kinds

of organic pills and stuff, only eats honey, tells me all about the

danger of what I eat. One day we went riding and he got hungry

and we stopped at a EZ-mart and he bought four sausage biscuits

and ate all of them before we left the store. I had a Snickers bar

and a Sprite Zero.

 

Getting a bit off topic here??

 

Very nice looking bike BTW!


I am old, fat and ugly, but I have 20 million dollars so it don't matter!

#16 SierraSlim

SierraSlim

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 600 posts

Posted 01 December 2010 - 10:12 PM

Thanks, Brad!

 

I will find out what an allen wrench is, lol, and get one.  In fact, I plan to get one of those bike-repair kits (a cheap one) that supposedly has everything you need to fix the average minor repair.  Then I am going to make Hubby sit down with me and ever so patiently teach me to change a tire.  (I can't believe I just said that; I think a very hot spot just warmed over!)  I am going to do it in front of him, with him telling me step by step and with me writing down each step.  Then I am going to put the paper I wrote the steps on into the tool-kit bag, keep it permanently there because I KNOW I will not remember it when the time comes, and do it again without looking at the paper.  I can't even believe I'm saying this;  I don't even pump my own gas!!  But biking is changing me in a lot of ways, and if I'm going to be a successful cyclist, which I dearly want to be, then I have to make myself get over my mechanical phobias and learn a few things.  Miracles do happen.   

 

I know you're right about nervousness and gripping the bars too tight.  I kept finding myself doing that yesterday.  I wasn't so nervous today and tried to make sure that I wasn't doing that.  The handlebars seem just a smidge off, now.  I'm wondering if even some of those things that fit on the end of the bars that y'all told me about, perpendicular to them, would help give me a little leeway in my grip.

 

I can just see your neighbor mounting his bike that way, lol.  I'm sure I'll figure out what works best for me.  Hopefully it won't look as funny as he does, lol.

 

And thanks for the saying she's nice-looking.  I have to admit, she's getting prettier all the time! 

 

Thanks for the help, big guy. 



#17 BHOFM

BHOFM

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 571 posts

Posted 02 December 2010 - 12:40 AM

Allen wrench, or sometimes called hex key.

 

113%2BAfYrpAL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

 


I am old, fat and ugly, but I have 20 million dollars so it don't matter!

#18 SierraSlim

SierraSlim

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 600 posts

Posted 02 December 2010 - 12:47 AM

Hey, that's a cool-looking thing, Brad!

 

If I had seen it lying in the road, I would have thought it was part of something and had broken off, lol.  I wonder if it was named for somebody named Allen?

 

I'm sure Hubby has one.  I will get him to show me what it's for.  Just think of all the new things I'll be learning! 

 

Oooh -- I did see a tool kit for women the other day online.  All the tools were in a pretty suitcase-type case, and the handles were pink.  They were really pretty!   I didn't look at it closely enough to see what tools were there, but maybe it would have one!   I might just have to buy it, lol.

 

Thanks for the info.



#19 BHOFM

BHOFM

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 571 posts

Posted 02 December 2010 - 01:04 AM

Slim;

 

The wife helps me in the shop, I build clocks, boats, model airplanes, model boats.

 

She is pretty good at sanding and she uses the scroll saw, fairly saw tool. She also

does some of the painting. She does well with most hand tools, tends to be a bit

careful and sometimes doesn't get thing tight enough.

 

She, being a pilot, wanted to build her own model airplane. A simple one to start.

She had to pick one that was.."pretty" and it turned out to be a bit more complex

than she had bargained for. But she got it done, 99% she did by her self.

 

Here is the end results.

 

http://www.rcgroups....ighlight=quikie

 

And the build log she did.

 

http://www.rcgroups....d.php?t=1179148

 

She has to try every thing, just to prove she can. Some times I lock my self in

the study, just to prove I can!


I am old, fat and ugly, but I have 20 million dollars so it don't matter!

#20 Steve_A

Steve_A

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 246 posts

Posted 02 December 2010 - 03:43 AM

Sierra, thanks for posting the pictures, that's a good-looking bike.  I like the brown accents in the color scheme.  Anyway, you bars have a slight angle back for the handgrips.  If you decide that you still need to make a change, look for some that angle back even more.  Take a look at our old bike and see what the difference is in the handgrip position.  I'm glad to hear that you're getting used to it, I'm sure that you will get the position right with the help of the shop.  Take care, Steve






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users