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Thread: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

  1. #21
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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    My current happiness device. Had since 1998 and can’t let go.

    2EF0D71F-70D4-432B-B8F6-DFA327818892.jpg
    Riding has to be fun, and part of the fun has to be that you’re not worried about having too much technology on your bike. - Tom Ritchey

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    There are days I get on the bike and feel a tailwind all day, and others when I feel what must be a brake shoe dragging silently.

    It can go either way.

    I've learned this has more to do with what I had for dinner the night before than with the bike, because it has happened on any and every bike.

    After going on a tear for most of the teens, I haven't bought a new bike in > 3 years - I've been more focused on dinner.

    I lost 40 lbs in 2020 (thank you, pandemic!), and surprise surprise: My overall mileage is down vs 2019 and earlier but I often return from a ride and see that PRs occurred without trying. And this is on a bike with 35c tires vs. the "road bike" with ~25c tires upon which I achieved PRs circa 2018-19.

    Sure, bikes feel different and we feel different on bikes. Find one you like, and go ride the lugs off the damn thing. A new-to-you bike that coincides with recovery, change in habits, or other change in circumstances can yield great results.

    In fairness to OP, I've also scratched that new bike itch pretty hard at times. In fact, I think I feel a case coming on again...

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    Quote Originally Posted by RichTheRoadie View Post
    ...
    My point is, there's something about the bike that I can't quite put my finger on, but it somehow makes me ride 'better' [....]
    What's even more odd about it is that the
    I'm not looking for answers - just curious whether anyone else has experienced this?
    Dear Rich,

    Yes. Absolutely. Three times.

    One was a Guerciotti branded alan. Hated the fender clearance, but I was a gear faster, a gear more exhausted, and a gear more satisfied with the ride, be it a double century or a criterium. Beaten to death outside a Rugby road house party.

    One was a Calfee. I had to be trained up, but that bike just kept giving. It pushed back until about april and spinning up the hill was not optional. I broke it and sold the repaired one.

    One was a René Herse prototype. I rode it up and down the hills west of Boulder, CO in 2006 and put a deposit down. My (near-clone) bike took a year and a half to get together, and 65,000 miles later I feel I may have gotten my money's worth out of it. It had bad habits, bit there has been nothing I have ridden that encouraged me to see over the top of the next hill more.

    Best Regards,

    Will
    William M deRosset
    Fort Collins CO USA

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    Quote Originally Posted by RichTheRoadie View Post
    I said “ridiculed”, not “abused”.
    Seems there should be a safe word if you're going to split hairs..
    Dan in Oregon

    ---------------

    The wheel is round. The hill lasts as long as it lasts. That's a fact. Everything else is pure theory.

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    Quote Originally Posted by Sascha Roszak View Post
    My current happiness device. Had since 1998 and can’t let go.

    2EF0D71F-70D4-432B-B8F6-DFA327818892.jpg
    Some very classy and warranted updates on there - the C12, the newer Mavic OPs - without it losing its soul. Just about perfect I'd say.

    But for the love of God man - big-ring it before the pic!!
    Dan in Oregon

    ---------------

    The wheel is round. The hill lasts as long as it lasts. That's a fact. Everything else is pure theory.

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    I'm currently experiencing this with my Canyon Ultimate CFR - but I'm chalking it up more to the geometry than anything else inherent to the materials, build, or weight of the bike. I mean, it's supposedly built of unicorn hairs or something - and is one of the lightest production disc frames out there.. the Red AXS is pretty sweet, discs are fun, and I find the Antares Adaptive saddle and the CP20 integrated bar/stem to be super comfy (though the hooks are a little short) - and with the 25th Anniv DT Swiss wheels on it (180 hubs, Made in EU rims), it's right at 6.8-kg as shown. All of that is neat but what I think is most thrilling me about this bike is the geometry. I've mostly ridden bikes with 72.5-STA and 15-25mm setback posts and this one is 73.78-STA and 15mm setback - that's maybe a 20mm difference. I also have mostly ridden bikes with 120-130mm stems and this one has a 110mm on it. My experienced reach from saddle to bars is more or less the same as ever though because the frame has super long reach for an XL at 418mm - that's an effective TT of 596mm. That short setback, long reach, short stem setup results in a 1034mm wheelbase with 415mm stays, which for me delivers what feels like a very balanced COG with zero toe overlap - quite a feat with my size 49 feet. With this position I'm climbing really well and descending even better. And while the low weight certainly helps account for a few seconds on climbs, I'm setting significant uphill PRs on everything from 30-min threshold efforts to 3-min VO2 killers to 30-sec all-out sprints up 12% grades - all while not having lost any weight myself and not really changing up anything with my training. It's gotta be the bike, right?

    35ade4919b47bd332626d9b1662c9611.jpg

    So then why am I itching to go back to a steel setup? Seriously. After 1000mi on this bike, loving it, and loving its versatility (it'll fit 32mm file-treads), I'm contemplating a return to a steel frameset with mech Campy and nice classic wheels. Maybe it's a disease, this constant pull between form and function. Maybe I just need to accept that I want both types of bike in my riding life. Dunno - but whatever it is, I'm looking to copy the positionals achieved on this bike as much as possible going forward.. I guess we'll see if that's where the magic is or if it's something less tangible.
    Dan in Oregon

    ---------------

    The wheel is round. The hill lasts as long as it lasts. That's a fact. Everything else is pure theory.

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    Quote Originally Posted by Clean39T View Post
    I'm setting significant uphill PRs on everything from 30-min threshold efforts to 3-min VO2 killers to 30-sec all-out sprints up 12% grades..
    Quantitating:

    A few examples:

    00:27 -> 00:21 on a 0.1mi, 12.5% avg climb
    03:22 -> 03:07 on a 0.5mi, 8% avg climb
    34:30 -> 30:29 on a 9.0mi, 2.1% avg climb (has two descents, most is 4-7%)
    1:08:02 -> 59:42 on a 13.69mi, 3.1% avg climb (has a couple descents)
    Dan in Oregon

    ---------------

    The wheel is round. The hill lasts as long as it lasts. That's a fact. Everything else is pure theory.

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    Quote Originally Posted by Clean39T View Post
    Some very classy and warranted updates on there - the C12, the newer Mavic OPs - without it losing its soul. Just about perfect I'd say.

    But for the love of God man - big-ring it before the pic!!
    Ha ha! The irony is it's usually on the big ring 99% of the time, I'll remember next time.
    Riding has to be fun, and part of the fun has to be that you’re not worried about having too much technology on your bike. - Tom Ritchey

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    I've mostly ridden bikes with 72.5-STA and 15-25mm setback posts and this one is 73.78-STA and 15mm setback - that's maybe a 20mm difference...
    Do you mean you're in a different place over the BB on the Canyon (than previous bikes)? Sounds like that's the 20mm, and it's farther forward?

    So then why am I itching to go back to... a steel frameset with mech Campy and nice classic wheels... Maybe I just need to accept that I want both types of bike in my riding life.
    Sure, accept this. Is it so wrong? Imagine drinking the best bottle of wine you've ever had in your life (or, name your poison, if you're not into wine), every night. Now imagine that whenever you chose to you could drink something just as nice, but different. Circumstances permitting, wouldn't anyone prefer that? <----BIG OLD RATIONALIZATION

    (Also, full disclosure, I'm right with you on the steel frame/mechanical Campy/classic wheels... putting one together in the next few weeks.)

    I'm looking to copy the positionals achieved on this bike as much as possible going forward.. I guess we'll see if that's where the magic is or if it's something less tangible.
    I'll be super-curious about your results. In the past decade or so, I've gotten much more precise about measuring just how i drape myself over a bike, and duplicating it on every bike I ride. But this by itself doesn't always make a bike feel so good, and the more I learn about it the deeper the mystery seems to become. Obvious things like where the seat is over the BB and how far to the bars are easy, but my current idea is that when I getting my center of gravity in the right place over the front and rear wheels and the headset is what makes the bike really transcendental. I guess that's what custom framebuilding is supposed to achieve, but my last 3 customs have been total busts and my current favorite rides were customs for other people, that I got second-hand... so long story short, I'm absolutely mystified by the whole question, and I'd love to hear what you find out.

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    Quote Originally Posted by Clean39T View Post
    So then why am I itching to go back to a steel setup? Seriously. After 1000mi on this bike, loving it, and loving its versatility (it'll fit 32mm file-treads), I'm contemplating a return to a steel frameset with mech Campy and nice classic wheels. Maybe it's a disease, this constant pull between form and function. Maybe I just need to accept that I want both types of bike in my riding life. Dunno - but whatever it is, I'm looking to copy the positionals achieved on this bike as much as possible going forward.. I guess we'll see if that's where the magic is or if it's something less tangible.
    In my opinion the Canyon will look out of date in a half dozen years where as the classic steel frameset is more likely to age like a fine wine.
    Riding has to be fun, and part of the fun has to be that you’re not worried about having too much technology on your bike. - Tom Ritchey

  11. #31
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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    First bike that ever made me want to go endlessly faster was a 1999ish Trek OCLV Postal bike. Not a cool point of reference, but there it is.

    Here's another from a few years later, flip phone pic and all:


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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    Quote Originally Posted by blaumax View Post
    Do you mean you're in a different place over the BB on the Canyon (than previous bikes)? Sounds like that's the 20mm, and it's farther forward?
    Yes. My saddle to handlebar reach is roughly the same as what it has been for years, but I'm sitting further forward (less setback) on the Canyon with a much longer front center and a middling stem, which delivers a longer wheelbase and more stability than what I've usually experienced, even with the same trail figures and bb drop.

    Quote Originally Posted by blaumax View Post
    ...but my current idea is that getting my center of gravity in the right place over the front and rear wheels and the headset is what makes the bike really transcendental.
    Absolutely. This is what I'm experiencing on the Canyon and why I want to more or less copy its design when getting a steel frame/fork built.
    Dan in Oregon

    ---------------

    The wheel is round. The hill lasts as long as it lasts. That's a fact. Everything else is pure theory.

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    Quote Originally Posted by Sascha Roszak View Post
    In my opinion the Canyon will look out of date in a half dozen years where as the classic steel frameset is more likely to age like a fine wine.
    True. And while SR12 may be out of date at that point, it will still have style and performance going for it, which Red AXS likely will not..

    There's nothing wrong with enjoying the bleeding-edge of technological advancements, you just have to accept it for what it is - and accept the depreciation and likelihood it will be replaced by the next-new-thing more quickly.
    Dan in Oregon

    ---------------

    The wheel is round. The hill lasts as long as it lasts. That's a fact. Everything else is pure theory.

  14. #34
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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    Quote Originally Posted by blaumax View Post
    Do you mean you're in a different place over the BB on the Canyon (than previous bikes)? Sounds like that's the 20mm, and it's farther forward?



    Sure, accept this. Is it so wrong? Imagine drinking the best bottle of wine you've ever had in your life (or, name your poison, if you're not into wine), every night. Now imagine that whenever you chose to you could drink something just as nice, but different. Circumstances permitting, wouldn't anyone prefer that? <----BIG OLD RATIONALIZATION

    (Also, full disclosure, I'm right with you on the steel frame/mechanical Campy/classic wheels... putting one together in the next few weeks.)



    I'll be super-curious about your results. In the past decade or so, I've gotten much more precise about measuring just how i drape myself over a bike, and duplicating it on every bike I ride. But this by itself doesn't always make a bike feel so good, and the more I learn about it the deeper the mystery seems to become. Obvious things like where the seat is over the BB and how far to the bars are easy, but my current idea is that when I getting my center of gravity in the right place over the front and rear wheels and the headset is what makes the bike really transcendental. I guess that's what custom framebuilding is supposed to achieve, but my last 3 customs have been total busts and my current favorite rides were customs for other people, that I got second-hand... so long story short, I'm absolutely mystified by the whole question, and I'd love to hear what you find out.
    I moved my saddle forward 1cm and my pretty nice bike rides like a million bucks now. I'm almost exactly at KOPS. (just as a point of reference, it's not meaningful, or an aspiration)
    Zuzu’s pedals

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    My saddle to handlebar reach is roughly the same as what it has been for years, but I'm sitting further forward (less setback) on the Canyon...
    I moved my saddle forward 1cm and my pretty nice bike rides like a million bucks now...
    Okay, as of today I have another anecdote: I bought a sweet Goodrich-built Rivendell some months ago, and I couldn't get it to settle down, it was WAY too sensitive and flibbertygibbet and wouldn't hold a straight line. I switched from a swept-back Nitto Sparrow bar, which was visually appropriate but put my hands aft of the headset, to a long-reach drop bar that put my hands a little ahead of the front hub when I'm on the hoods... and suddenly, the Riv's a bike. Moving my weight farther forward mysteriously calmed the steering down.

    I generally like to make up my seat-to-bar distance out of less top tube and lots of stem. And using the smallest size frame I can get away with, I can usually get a lot of weight over the steering axis, like I just achieved with the Rivendell, while keeping the seat in the place I like over the BB. What do I like about that place, you ask? Don't know! Internet research is inconclusive (surprise), fitters don't agree, and all I have to support my choice is a lot of miles over a lot of years. But you guys are both talking about putting your seat in different places from what you've been used to... maybe there's more flexibility about this than I've assumed? After all, where you sit over the cranks is pretty dynamic as you ride anyway, up hills and down hills, hard efforts and slacking off... I wonder if I've been more dogmatic about my setback than is really called for.

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    Default Re: Bikes that make you ride better (or differently) - is it just me?...

    Quote Originally Posted by blaumax View Post
    I generally like to make up my seat-to-bar distance out of less top tube and lots of stem. And using the smallest size frame I can get away with, I can usually get a lot of weight over the steering axis, like I just achieved with the Rivendell, while keeping the seat in the place I like over the BB. What do I like about that place, you ask? Don't know! Internet research is inconclusive (surprise), fitters don't agree, and all I have to support my choice is a lot of miles over a lot of years. But you guys are both talking about putting your seat in different places from what you've been used to... maybe there's more flexibility about this than I've assumed? After all, where you sit over the cranks is pretty dynamic as you ride anyway, up hills and down hills, hard efforts and slacking off... I wonder if I've been more dogmatic about my setback than is really called for.
    I know I have ever since 7-11 went to race the classics and I read that the locals told Davis he should slam his saddle (back)

    I never really thought about it until after I started reading Steve Hogg's writing. Recently my goal has been to get more power out of the glutes. A more forward position seems to help with this, at the expense of needing more engagement of the upper body.
    Zuzu’s pedals

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