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My bike's getting better (and more wrong)
Last Post 08/21/2015 09:51 AM by ed custer. 2 Replies.
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08/20/2015 01:53 PM
Just made two improvements I wish I made on day one for my "good bike", the TiCycles road bike with triple.  Replaced two parts.  One was honestly worn and well past it's prime (the middle 42t chainring, 105 Hollowtech) and the other, the sweet SunTour aero brake levers, circa 1995.

The chainring had started dropping the chain onto the 28 any time I was on the bottom two cogs and didn't set the FD cage to rub.  It always could do that and did occasionally but it was becoming a regular event.  So I replaced it.  Easy.  130 BCD.  Thank you Shimano.  Bought a Sugino ring,  no pins!  no ramps!  Just real teeth!  What a joy!  And everything feels so much more secure riding a ring the chain doesn't want to fall off.  Of course, this bike has the advanced Digital Technology (with feedback) shifting, aka DT, not the crude pre-feedback index system.  That ring is more than compatible.  That old Shimano chainring was shot!  Granted the bike has 9000 miles and the middle ring gets most of those.  But still, it looks to me like the ramping and cutouts really hurt chainring life.  Those teeth never had the meat of the new ring.

The other change.  I took off the SunTour levers, standard road aero levers that I put on new when I set the bike up in '07.  I always liked them except I do get some chafing on the thumb side of what ever finger is closest to the lever when I climb out of the saddle.  (A lifelong challenge with almost every lever I have ever ridden.  I made a radical and "wrong" change to my good fix gear, Jessica, that solved it.  But I am getting ahead of myself.)

So I replaced the standard road levers with Tektro V-brake levers.  Wow!  Solves two issues simultaneously.  The chafing issues.  (Those levers are 1) huge! and 2) have very decent rounding and attention on the underside.  They are probably no better than the much smaller road levers, but with that extra room, it isn't an issue.  (And I know that for certain.  I have done two Cycle Oregons on those levers on Jessica and many thousands of feet and miles of climbing, never in a gear lower than 42-23.)

And stopping power!  Real, secure stopping power.  Like "oh s***!, I'm not going to make the next turn and I need to shed 10 mph fast!" stopping power.  Grab them like your life depends on them and all they do is stop you.  No lock up.  No skid.  True, you have to squeeze hard.  Big hands are a big plus.  Braking from the tops is not as good.  But in the drops, like I always am going down big hill, great!

I did a stop with that setup in traffic a couple of years ago on Jessica.  Car in front stopped suddenly.  I hit the brakes hard.  Lifted the rear tire.  And stopped with 10' to spare!

Both of these bikes have Shimano dual pivots.  Probably Cool Stop pads on Jessica and I am not sure what on the good bike.  Aluminum rims.

I get to go for a ride on my "new" beast!  (On the old re-wrapped HB tape.  I never put new, nice tape on after playing with levers.  Got to ride them to get them dialed in.)



08/20/2015 11:04 PM
I went for a hilly 40 miles. Love the changes! Funny, depowering the brakes has made the bike much more fun to descend on. Given me far more confidence on corners and on rough roads.



08/21/2015 09:51 AM
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