Great ride today but what's with other cyclists?

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by Mike Jacoubowsk, Feb 8, 2004.

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  1. Jobst Brandt

    Jobst Brandt Guest

    Rick Onanian writes:

    >>> Recently, I went to unscrew a Presta to inflate it, and unscrewed it right out; and it didn't
    >>> want to screw back in properly...

    >> Removable Presta cores are not all that common in most brands but they are detectable because
    >> the coarse cap threads have two flats for tightening the core and loosening it. In that respect
    >> they are

    > Err...I mean, no cap on it, I unscrewed the core too much, and it wouldn't go back together. I
    > guess I have to start keeping better track of this stuff, this stuff just never concerned me
    > much...I just try to bear in mind that Presta valves are, IME, delicate.

    >> identical in function to Schrader valves that also leak if not screwed in firmly, the difference
    >> being that for the Schrader a special wrench is required, one that comes on the tip of some old
    >> metal valve caps.

    > You and David Kerber have mentioned Schrader valves that can be screwed and unscrewed, but I don't
    > think I've ever _seen_ such a thing.

    All Schrader valve cores are removable. You can buy them at auto parts stores. Next time you pass a
    auto tire shop, see if they have the tool handy. Tires on cars are always mounted without valve
    cores installed so that tires can be rapidly inflated and deflated. The last thing is to install the
    valve cores and inflate to user pressure.

    > Well I'll be a monkey's bare-assed uncle. I just looked in a Schrader valve, and sure enough, it
    > appears there's a mechanism by which you could stick an appropriate tool in there and do stuff.

    You'll notice the stem has internal threads as well. That's the clue.

    > With a Presta valve, you always screw and unscrew it. I've _never_ heard of anybody actually
    > screwing and unscrewing a Schrader's innards like that.

    The Presta, not having a closure spring, relies on a conical seal on the inner end of a threaded
    secure/release pin on which a lock nut is located. If this nut is not screwed down, the valve
    might leak but what's more important is that it can centrifugally open or open when hitting a
    "curb"... ta-da!

    >>> While people should stop to help, anybody who needs help should

    >> people cannot see when they are not needed. Just a "Thanks" after the first question seems not to
    >> be enough.

    > Maybe "Thanks, I've got everything I need" will work.

    Yes, the kind of voluteerism of these folks is not help I prefer. If they cannot see that someone is
    well in charge, sand papering the patch area, and isn't glancing around for clues, they probably
    don't understand the process itself. It's like riders who give obviously experienced old time riders
    advice on how to ride not noticing that this guy is on a well used 1960's bicycle just cruising
    along. They wouldn't recognize a professional racer either if the met one.

    Jobst Brandt [email protected]
     


  2. Jobst Brandt

    Jobst Brandt Guest

    Mike Jacoubowsky writes:

    >> I see it the other way. If you need help, ask for it. I find the interrogation I occasionally get
    >> while sand papering a tube... "Do you have a spare tube? Do you need a patch? Do you have a pump?
    >> Do you need help?... to which the questioner demands answers as though wanting to go through a
    >> newly learned sequence and to make use of the knowledge just acquired at the bicycle shop with
    >> the bicycle. Some people cannot see when they are not needed.

    > The "Some people cannot see when they are not needed" bit puts quite a burden on the person asking
    > if someone needs help. And it begs the question, when you reply to a given post, do you consider
    > first whether it will be welcome or not?

    I don't seem to have that trouble when I see someone with a flat. I ask whether the rider needs
    anything and that does it. If they are already busy patching the flat, I don't bother them. It isn't
    that arcane an assessment to make.

    > Asking someone who may (or may not) need help requires nothing more than a three-word response (as
    > in "No, I'm fine"). If one were attempting to be civil, you could add two words and reply "No, I'm
    > fine, but thanks!" The inherent danger in doing so is that it might encourage civility and/or
    > somehow delay the normal progression of the universe in some terrible fashion.

    Your spin on these events certainly throws the burden of proof back to the rider, who is busy
    patching his tire, to accommodate the inquisitive person who wants to get involved. It's similar to
    waiters who will interrupt a quiet conversation of a dining couple to ask whether "everything is
    alright" as though diners are incompetent to ask.

    Jobst Brandt [email protected]
     
  3. John Everett

    John Everett Guest

    On Sat, 14 Feb 2004 22:20:49 GMT, [email protected]
    wrote:

    >>>> While people should stop to help, anybody who needs help should
    >
    >>> people cannot see when they are not needed. Just a "Thanks" after the first question seems not
    >>> to be enough.
    >
    >> Maybe "Thanks, I've got everything I need" will work.
    >
    >Yes, the kind of voluteerism of these folks is not help I prefer. If they cannot see that someone
    >is well in charge, sand papering the patch area, and isn't glancing around for clues, they probably
    >don't understand the process itself. It's like riders who give obviously experienced old time
    >riders advice on how to ride not noticing that this guy is on a well used 1960's bicycle just
    >cruising along. They wouldn't recognize a professional racer either if the met one.

    From: http://hyperdictionary.com

    CURMUDGEON - [n] a crusty irascible cantankerous old person full of stubborn ideas ;-)

    jeverett3<AT>earthlink<DOT>net http://home.earthlink.net/~jeverett3
     
  4. The Real Bev

    The Real Bev Guest

    [email protected] wrote:
    >
    > Yes, the kind of voluteerism of these folks is not help I prefer. If they cannot see that someone
    > is well in charge, sand papering the patch area, and isn't glancing around for clues, they
    > probably don't understand the process itself. It's like riders who give obviously experienced old
    > time riders advice on how to ride not noticing that this guy is on a well used 1960's bicycle just
    > cruising along. They wouldn't recognize a professional racer either if the met one.

    OTOH, the woman I met carrying her bike because the front brake cable broke and it never occurred to
    her to release the straddle cable definitely needed help. What was really weird was that she kept on
    carrying her bike even after I released the brakes for her...

    --
    Cheers, Bev
    ************************************************************
    "Let them eat shit."

    -- Marcel Antoinette, Marie's little-known brother
     
  5. I had a rather different problem on my home commute Wednesday. A bottom bracket bearing failed
    badly, and while the bike wasn't inoperable, a decided the prudent course was to call my wife for a
    ride. But there are few bikers out in Milwaukee at 6:00 p.m. on a cold Feb. evening (more precisely
    there were none at that location), and I didn't have my cell phone along. So it meant a mile walk to
    the nearest commercial area. FWIW, I've been fortunate. That's the first time I've had to be picked
    up because of mechanical trouble in a long time.

    "Mike Jacoubowsky" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > First really, really, REALLY nice day of riding in Northern California in some time, and got out
    > this morning with a couple guys from the shop. On the way back one of them got a flat, so we're
    > stopped at the side of the road, replacing the tube and inflating it with one of those fun mini-
    > pumps... probably a good 15 minutes or so, with maybe 30-40 other cyclists passing by.
    >
    > Not one asked if we needed anything. Weird. Are we so self-absorbed in whatever we're doing that
    > we no longer ask if somebody might need
    anything?
    > (True enough that we were OK, but there's no way anybody riding past can know that for sure
    > without asking).
    >
    > 9 times out of 10, when you pass somebody who's stopped at the side of the road and doing
    > something with their bike (or just looking a bit out of place), they're OK. But there's always
    > that chance that somebody might
    have
    > discovered that their spare tube doesn't hold air, or their pump isn't working, or maybe they
    > can't figure out how to get the wheel back in and knocked out a brake shoe.
    >
    > Of course, lots of people won't say they need help even when they do, especially guys, so when I
    > pass somebody at the side of the road, I don't ask if they "need help" but instead "Do you have
    > what you need?" It's
    truly
    > amazing how many more people will say something like "Yeah, if you've got
    a
    > spare tube that would be great" if you ask them if they need anything...
    but
    > asking them if they need help and they'll almost always say no.
    >
    > It doesn't hurt to look after other cyclists on the road. Someday you
    just
    > might need help yourself.
    >
    > --Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles http://www.ChainReactionBicycles.com
     
  6. I use kevlar linings and exta thick thorn resistant tubes (mainly to keep the kevlar linings from
    causing a flat, as has happened to me 2 or 3 times). The combination has cut way down on my flats.
    But it can't prevent stem failures or valve failures.

    "Rick Onanian" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > On Mon, 09 Feb 2004 13:05:01 -0500, "David L. Johnson" <[email protected]> wrote:
    > >Not too many riders carry spare wheels.
    >
    > We have kevlar tire beads and belts, and kevlar spokes; when are we going to get kevlar rims? <G>
    > --
    > Rick Onanian
     
  7. The Danimal

    The Danimal Guest

    Rick Onanian <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > On Sat, 14 Feb 2004 04:34:09 GMT, [email protected] wrote:
    > >The second problem is that the stem is less than half as strong as a Schrader due to its smaller
    > >diameter and therefore, cannot be safely pumped against. That is to say, the pumping force cannot
    > >be put against the stem but must be essentially from one fist into the other.
    >
    > Yup, this is what broke the second tube.
    >
    > >With the pump handle in one hand and the pump head (on the valve) in the other, pumping reaction
    > >force goes into the hands, not the stem that is unable to withstand that force.

    A better solution is to find a convenient, strong object to provide the reaction force. See below
    for ideas.

    > Even while doing this, it can be hard to keep it still and steady. It helps to remove the wheel
    > completely from the bike, so that you can hold it in whatever position is most comfortable for you
    > to get this proper method. However, when excessively tired, or hot, or on a dangerous/scary road,
    > or whatever, one can be pretty unsteady. Then, schrader's robustness would be preferred over
    > presta's delicateness.

    I routinely see bicyclists assuming they must brace the pump head with one hand while pushing the
    pump handle with the other hand. This divides the available pumping force by more than a factor of
    two, and almost nobody has the neuromuscular coordination necessary to exactly match the dynamically
    varying pumping force from one hand with a reaction force from the other hand. Neuromuscular
    coordination declines as the cyclist's arm and chest muscles fatigue, and this produces
    characteristic jitter as tire pressure increases and more pumping force is necessary. As the
    amplitude of jitter increases, it's easy to break the valve stem or rupture the rubber joint around
    the valve base.

    The solution is quite simple: find some solid, immovable object with a vertical face to brace the
    pump head. A signpost, guard rail, tree, boulder, or brick wall will often work.

    If your frame pump has one of the old-style Campagnolo steel pump heads with the U-shaped prongs,
    you can wheel your bike against a guard rail or sign post and brace the pump head very nicely
    against a suitable edge of the post or rail. You need to manuever the bike a bit to line up the
    valve in the position best for bracing the pump head against the solid object. You still need to
    grip the pump head with one hand to steady it against the solid object, but your hand does not need
    to supply any reaction force---you only have to prevent the pump head from slipping. You can pump
    with the other hand, and as the tire pressure rises you can assist your pumping hand with the inside
    of your corresponding leg. You should be able to get at least 30 more PSI into the tire (if you need
    it) with this method than by using your hands only with a given pump, and with less danger to the
    valve stem.

    If you have a fellow cyclist to assist by steadying the pump head against the solid object, then you
    can use both hands to generate pumping force. This also allows the method to work with pumps that do
    not have projections on the head that can engage a solid object securely. The assistant simply wraps
    both fists around the pump head as if gripping a baseball bat, with the outside of one fist
    projecting just beyond the pump head as necessary to rest securely against the solid object. Gloves
    are helpful to protect the hand that transmits the reaction force.

    An assistant allows the pumper to put all his efforts into driving the pump handle, making it very
    easy to reach high pressures. For someone like a small woman with not much upper-body strength, this
    may be the only way to attain a rideable tire pressure using only a frame pump. (Many small women
    give up on frame pumps altogether and carry CO2 cartridges because they cannot generate a high
    pressure with a typical frame pump used in the obvious but highly inefficient way. People should
    learn to use their strength wisely.)

    With a little spatial reasoning, you can easily exploit available solid objects to make a frame pump
    almost as easy and reliable as a floor pump.

    A frame pump with a hose, of course, can be used directly as a floor pump, using the Earth to
    provide all the reaction force one could need. An assistant may need to hold down the pump for the
    return stroke if it lacks a foldable foot peg.

    -- Daniel Mocsny
     
  8. On 17 Feb 2004 09:40:04 -0800, [email protected] (The Danimal) wrote:

    >If you have a fellow cyclist to assist by steadying the pump head against the solid object,

    but carrying that pump-monkey around is a real bitch up the hills!

    -Luigi www.livejournal.com/users/ouij
     
  9. Jobst Brandt

    Jobst Brandt Guest

    Dan Mocsny writes:

    >>> The second problem is that the stem is less than half as strong as a Schrader due to its smaller
    >>> diameter and therefore, cannot be safely pumped against. That is to say, the pumping force
    >>> cannot be put against the stem but must be essentially from one fist into the other.

    >> Yup, this is what broke the second tube.

    >>> With the pump handle in one hand and the pump head (on the valve) in the other, pumping reaction
    >>> force goes into the hands, not the stem that is unable to withstand that force.

    > A better solution is to find a convenient, strong object to provide the reaction force. See below
    > for ideas.

    >> Even while doing this, it can be hard to keep it still and steady. It helps to remove the wheel
    >> completely from the bike, so that you can hold it in whatever position is most comfortable for
    >> you to get this proper method. However, when excessively tired, or hot, or on a dangerous/scary
    >> road, or whatever, one can be pretty unsteady. Then, Schrader's robustness would be preferred
    >> over Presta's delicateness.

    The problem is that you don't have that choice if you use common high performance rims. They are
    too narrow for a Schrader valve unless you are willing to use lower spoke tension and have a
    weaker wheel.

    > I routinely see bicyclists assuming they must brace the pump head with one hand while pushing the
    > pump handle with the other hand. This divides the available pumping force by more than a factor of
    > two, and almost nobody has the neuromuscular coordination necessary to exactly match the
    > dynamically varying pumping force from one hand with a reaction force from the other hand.

    This claim of a "factor of two" is incorrect mechanically and physically, the holding hand doing no
    work. Just doing this once makes obvious that only the arm that pumps gets tired. Thus I suspect
    that you don't in fact pump tires with a frame fit pump or you would have noticed that it is not so.

    > Neuromuscular coordination declines as the cyclist's arm and chest muscles fatigue, and this
    > produces characteristic jitter as tire pressure increases and more pumping force is necessary. As
    > the amplitude of jitter increases, it's easy to break the valve stem or rupture the rubber joint
    > around the valve base.

    That sounds ominous and scientifical but ridiculous. I agree that there are many riders who don't
    have the strength to pump a tire but that doesn't make this scenario correct. As I have mentioned,
    the demise of the Silca Impero pump was the advent of avocational riders who had the money to buy
    whatever it took while not being athletically adept. The market (where the $$ are) voted against
    those pumps and now they are essentially gone along with the Campagnolo pump head that was designed
    for these pumps.

    > The solution is quite simple: find some solid, immovable object with a vertical face to brace the
    > pump head. A signpost, guard rail, tree, boulder, or brick wall will often work.

    I suppose that may seem good but pumping work remains unchanged and pumping into the other fist is
    far easier and faster. You can't do it for free. The work must come from somewhere. You make pumping
    a tire sound like such a major problem.

    > -- Daniel Mocsny

    So where have you been all this time? I haven't seen a posting from you in years.

    Jobst Brandt [email protected]
     
  10. The Danimal <[email protected]> wrote:

    > A better solution is to find a convenient, strong object to provide the reaction force. See below
    > for ideas.
    ...
    > The solution is quite simple: find some solid, immovable object with a vertical face to brace the
    > pump head. A signpost, guard rail, tree, boulder, or brick wall will often work.

    I just put the wheel on the ground and use my foot (toes under the pump head).
     
  11. Bruce Frech

    Bruce Frech Guest

    I just hold the pump head / valve with one hand and the pump handle with the other. My two arms do a
    fine job working against each other. I find trying to brace the valve against a fixed object without
    fixing the rim is difficult, and if you brace against the rim you run the risk of breaking the
    valve. So I typically hold the wheel in the air so the rim can move freely with the valve.

    Bruce

    "Benjamin Weiner" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > The Danimal <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > > A better solution is to find a convenient, strong object to provide the reaction force. See
    > > below for ideas.
    > ...
    > > The solution is quite simple: find some solid, immovable object with a vertical face to brace
    > > the pump head. A signpost, guard rail, tree, boulder, or brick wall will often work.
    >
    > I just put the wheel on the ground and use my foot (toes under the pump head).
     
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