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Female Cyclists ‘In’s and Out’s’...

Posted on Jan 21, 2015

Or, What’s the Best Saddle-type for a Female Cyclist? Reprinted from Cobbcycling.com The quest for a comfortable bike seat has probably been going on since the second day the bicycle was invented. It is the search for the Holy Grail, the quest for the answers to the Universe, the only thing stopping World Peace, it is on every person’s mind that straddles a bicycle. How can something as enjoyable as riding a bicycle, bring so much discomfort and still be overlooked or just accepted as being okay for that situation. For men, there seems to be a tendency to just “suck it up”, more miles will make it better and to just ride through the pain. Men have certain body parts that require different types of arranging to find comfort without getting crushed, women have a completely different set of issues. For women, the concept of suffering through it, is not that pleasurable, the thought of hours in the saddle has kept many women away from the sport. As a saddle manufacturer, we get many e-mails and phone calls...

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In case you were wondering … Gear Numbers

Posted on Jan 17, 2015

This can be viewed as a TECH NOTE for the cycle computer manufacturers as well as the GPS manufacturers. Last week I was testing several different GPS head units and cycle computers that ‘talk to’ Di2. But, after comparing the data, I noticed that something just wasn’t right. But let me take a step back. The Shimano D-fly wireless transmitter sends several pieces of data to ANT+ devices. These data of importance being Di2 battery level and gear position (front gear number, rear gear number). Its up to the cycle computer/GPS to take this data and display it in a value added format such as a graphical representation of what gears you are currently in and by recording time stamps, can tell the cyclist what % of the ride he/she was in what gear. So what’s the issue? After entering (a) Cassette Model 9/10/11, (b) Cassette type (11-23, 11-25, 11-28, etc.),  and (c) Crankset Type (50-34, 53-39, etc.) into your cycle computer/GPS, it has enough information to display all kinds of data for you. And that’s the issue. In this example,...

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2014 Products of the Year

Posted on Jan 14, 2015

For the 2014 Product of the Year Awards, I have added the categories of  HARDWARE, SOFTWARE, CLOTHING and HONORABLE MENTION. This was actually pretty tough to put together since every product I have tested has been top-notch from every manufacturer. Not a dud in the group. Every product I tested lived up to its manufacturers spec-sheet and every product performed extremely well and met/exceeded its intended purpose. For 2014, each manufacturer put a lot of quality back into their products and every manufacturer I have spoken with has up front and honest when answering any and all of my questions. Therefore, this made it extremely difficult to pick the best of the best. What I decided to do is create a THEME for 2014 … ELECTRONICS. Since Di2 has been out for awhile, I looked at what’s next. I decided to look at the ‘accessories’ built to support Di2. So here goes; HARDWARE – In keeping with the 2014 theme, I chose the Shimano d-fly SM-EWWO1 wireless transmitter. This small transmitter adds a whole new dimension to Di2 by transmitting Di2 data such as % battery remaining, current gear...

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Cyckit’s Aeroclam Hard Shelled Saddle Bag

Posted on Jan 7, 2015

INTRODUCTION CYCKIT Ltd, located in New Zealand, specializes in designing and producing integrated bicycling storage products which are targeted primarily for higher end users in the road bike market. Cyckit’s initial goal was to create a highly effective saddle bag without using Velcro and zippers which are two issues I have had with cloth saddle bags. The cloth tends to fray, the Velcro wears out causing the bag to either hang down or fall off completely and zippers get stuck the first time they get dirty, which is the worst thing that can happen as it prevents  you from getting to your spare tube and C02. Cyckit’s founder, Pat Reardon, looked at the problems with current saddle bags and decided that there had to be a better way. After interviewing 125 road cyclists, common problems, issues and enhancement requests became evident. These being that the bag had to be completely secured under the saddle, seamless integration to the saddle (i.e., more aerodynamic), easy access to the contents, must fit most saddles and free of contact with the cyclist while...

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STRAVA incorrectly calculating total elevation/altitude...

Posted on Dec 10, 2014

Recent issue with Strava. Meaning … DON’T BELIEVE THE ALTITUDE DATA IN STRAVA. I did a local course this morning. The Magellan Cyclo 505 stated 4,080.56 feet of climbing. When I uploaded this ride to Strava, Strava said 6,918 feet. How can these be so different? The Magellan Cyclo GPS creates a GPX file and every second builds on this file as you ride, updating each parameter including Lat, Lon, elev, hr, power, etc. After the ride, when you hit STOP, the cyclo ends the recording, calculates the totals and closes the file – that’s why it takes several seconds for the Cyclo 505 to respond after you hit STOP. At home, you can upload this file to your local Magellan account where a graphical representation of the ride is displayed. Regarding Altitude, the Magellan adds all of the waypoints up and, for this ride was calculated to be 4,080.56 feet. I then uploaded to Strava and now the total Ascent is 6,918 feet. So where is the discrepancy? I then took the GPX file and changed each <ele> to <xxx>...

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Best Location for EWW01 – Shimano D-fly wireless transmitter...

Posted on Nov 25, 2014

I’ve been experimenting with best location for the EWWo1. I have heard several people say that, depending on which GPS head unit you are running, there might not be enough signal strength for the head unit to read. Some cyclists have experienced timeouts with their head units and dropped/missing data when processing the results. Reading through Shimano’s tech docs for the EWW01, they imply that this location is a requirement. They seem very specific that the location needs to be mounted between 110mm and 130mm above the top of the right rear dropout. In actuality, this is only a recommendation for placement. Right rear seat stay mounting: The advantages are (1) easy access, (2) ease of connecting, (3) tucked in and out of the way. The disadvantage being that some GPS head units might not pick up its signal. So, where to mount it? This will work for both the older Ultegra 6770 SM-EW67A-E front junction (shown to the left) and the newer 3-port Shimano SM-EW90-A or the 5-port SM-EW90-B front junction (shown to the right). It’s just that the newer units are easier to work...

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2014 Scattante RAZZO road helmet

Posted on Jul 21, 2014

        INITIAL OBSERVATIONS: I crashed several months ago. Hard enough to crush the rear section of my helmet. My old Scattante razzo helmet saved my life. Razzo is the lightest and coolest helmet in the Scattante lineup. It combines all of the looks, features, comfort and protection that the ‘BIG GUYS” offer at about 1/3 of the price. An added benefit is the integrated high-tech carbon reinforcement construction which holds the helmet together during an impact. This greater protection is the same feature as seen on only the most expensive helmets. Twenty-two (22) large vents provide considerable cooling while the foam material allows quick-drying of the pads. The razzo has a ‘wheel-type’ adjustable rear retention system for a custom and comfortable fit. Extremely soft nylon chin straps allow for easy adjustment but tended to slip and loosen a little during each ride. HOW DOES IT FIT? When riding a bicycle, the single most important thing you can do is to wear a helmet. The second most important thing you can do is to wear a helmet that fits you perfectly. Since...

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The Best Tires I Have Ridden To Date

Posted on Jul 20, 2014

WHATS IN THE PACKAGE: Hutchinson categorizes the ATOM COMP as a “narrow profile clincher racing tire that excels on dry roads and pavements.” Hutchinson claims 4*’s (4 out of a total of 5) in efficiency, lightweight, puncture resistance and wear. So, after 1,200 miles, I agree with one exception, Wear & Longevity. The rear tire lasted 1,200 miles vs. 2,000 miles for a Hutchinson Fusion 3 Tubeless vs. 2,800 miles for a low cost Performance Forte Pro+ road tire. This is pretty poor mileage for a tire, so the bottom line is don’t use this as a training tire. This tire is for racing only. INSTALLATION OBSERVATIONS: I recently tested the Essor PACE 32mm Carbon Clincher wheels mounted onto a VeloVie Vitesse 500, and the Hutchinson ATOM COMP tires came included. Being that the wheels are carbon fiber, I mounted the tires by hand. This is because a friend of mine bought a set of Reynolds Attack carbon clincher wheels (pictured to the right) and took them to a bike shop to mount a set of racing tires. The...

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