What happened to the Aibo?

Are they still trotting around in living rooms around the world until their batt’s need to be recharged?

My new roadie

Here is my new budget roadie. The frame is a Neo exile/fm006 china carbon jobby. From the reviews i have read it seems that it is ok/decentish. Main critique is usually with the noodly fork which i figured was fairly easily replaceable.

Parts are thanks to Eddie who offloaded his left over spares at a good price to me. Thanks buddy!

Total weight is 7.57kg and i am sure it is going to be fastest thing i have ridden on the road. Still need to put cable crimps on + adjust hoods. Ignore the bar tape too as i am still experimenting until my white fizik tape comes in.

Frame :: Neo Exile/Fm006 White
Fork :: Neo Exile/Fm006 White
Headset :: Integrated Campag Style
Stem :: Giant Connect 100mm
Handlebar :: Giant Connect 42mm
Shifter/Brakes :: Ultegra 6700
Crankset :: Ultegra 6700
Front derailleur :: Ultegra 6700 Braze-on
Braze-on adaptor :: Powerplay
Rear derailleur :: Ultegra 6700
Cassette :: Ultegra 6700
Chain :: KMC X10L Gold
Seatpost :: Use alloy 300
Saddle :: Fizik Arione
Wheelset :: Ksyrium Elite
Tyres :: Conti Attack/Force
Tubes :: Michelin Latex
Pedals :: PD-R540

Shall I take it out?

My left arm is about 80% recovered now. I can feel the wire quite pronounced now whenever the tip of my elbow contacts anything. The thing i am wondering is whether i should go back into surgery and take it out. My logic is that the trouble is temporary compared to a wire in my elbow for the rest of my life?

Something to ponder with my specialist. *holy crap they charge a broken elbow and leg*

Wrenching

Anyone find wrenching on bikes therapeutic? I find it relaxing, but only when i have all the tools i require and nothing gets stuck. If something does get stuck i usually walk around the room, grunt a bit and mumble something before bringing out the park tools hammer. Speaking of park tools hammer if you dont have this tool please go get one. It’s awesome. I left my park tool hammer at work today and i was greatly missing it tonight.

Here are some shots from tonight. I really need a flash. I am going to fly to hk and buy some camera gear instead of bike gear for a change.

Thomson X4 stem clamping onto a Truvativ Noir race handlebar from which sits the sram X.0 rear shifter + Elixir CR Mag + ESI racers edge silicon grips.

Trusty Shimano XTR pedal on Truvativ noir carbon crankset running a 32T blackspire mono veloce chainring guided by a MRP 1.x.

Sram X.0 9spd carbon rear derailleur working in conjunction with a Shimano XT cassette and a Dura-ace chain.

Sid XX sitting on a digi scale. 1412g on the scale.

Peeking through the rotors at the work of art that is the XX 11-36 cassette.

Blackbox ceramic GXP bottom bracket which spins noticebly smoother than the standard GXP bottom bracket.

Weight conscious riders

To me, a true weight weenie almost always goes over the top in trying to reduce their bikes weight. You know a weight weenie when you see them ordering one off parts specifically made for their weight *i dont mean under 80kg kinda weight but more like under 75.643kg*. You know a weight weenie when they use 3 bolts for their rotors and you definitely know a WW when they chop their brake mount adaptors in an attempt to shave weight. These are ppl i classify as true WW.

So where do you fit in if you look up weights of certain parts you are purchasing but dont use 3 rotor bolts? Weight conscious. This is the term given to people who understand that certain parts of their bikes are better when light and certain parts of their bikes are better when heavy. I myself research weight specifications on parts extensively but i will not use compromising parts on my bikes. I dont mind using a light seatpost clamp or some light handlebars since i know that i am fairly light weight but i will not skimp on parts like tyres or suspension to save a few grams. I honestly believe this is the best way to go about it.

Don’t let the WW’s talk you into shaving that brake mount but certainly don’t let the weenie haters tell you to man up and ride a bike that is weighted more than it could be!

Sram XX

Let’s see what the fuss is all about.

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Spring cleaning or is it autumn cleaning?

Was in the mood to rummage around 3 bucket worth of spare parts i have accumulated over the past 2 years of solid riding. Consquently took me 4hrs to take all the photos and then another 1hr to edit the pictures to load it up online. The next day it took me the better half of the day to write description for all the parts but i am glad to announce that it is all paying off. My spare room is cleaner and i am richer. Just the way it should be….

On another note, it occured to me today that Flickr actually does not allow you to use their hosting service for EBAY. Great that I JUST figured it out after i spent $24 worth of ads most likely show casing some overly expensive bikes with no pictures of any kind. Real smart …. double check next time Jing, double check next time.

Amongst all the parts i have up for sale i want to sell no other part more than my gravity lock on grips. The price for these worn grips are a single McChicken burger….*hey im hungry alright!* Someone, please someone, end my misery and present me with a McChicken burger and i will tearfully give up my gravity grips. I will even share half of that burger with you!

Bike fit

Generally speaking as weekend warriors we are slightly more tuned in on bike fit compared to your average mums and dads riding on kids bikes. That does not however mean we are experts or knowledgeable on this aspect. A recent self assessment has shown me that my knowledge on bike fit is purely basic stuff.

Ever noticed why pros have such a low handlebar to saddle height ratio? What are the reasoning behind them apart from a more aerodynamic position? Is your handlebars too high or too low? how do you know what is the right height? These question challenges consequently every other part on the bike ie saddle height/fore-aft position/cleat position etc etc

I always setup my bikes fairly similarly but i didn’t know the reasoning behind why. I stumbled across something yesterday which shed better light on the subject and sounded fairly reasonable *in regards to handlebar height*. Which one of these are you? This morning i am inflexiable :(. I will do the test tonight and hope my muscles are a little bit stretchier. :p

This is determined by the purpose of the rider and by some anatomical factors.  We need to assume that you require maximum efficiency, highest speed with least effort.  If you don’t require high efficiency, put your handlebars where they suit you.  But I find the most efficient position is also the most comfortable and visa versa.

The height of the handlebars in relation to the seat is largely determined by a rider’s flexibility.

Sit on the floor with your legs together straight out in front of you, knees straight.

Highly flexible:
Able to reach your wrists to, or passed your toes.
Flexible:
Able to reach your fingers to your toes.
Inflexible:
Unable to reach your fingertips to your ankles.

Some rough guides of thumb:

Highly flexible:
handlebars 0–5cm below the seat height.
Flexible:
handlebars 0–5cm above the seat height.
Inflexible:
handlebars over 5cm above the seat height.

Ohhhh.

and never purchase a kebab when you see white people operating. It is a disaster waiting to happen. Just like when you go into a Chinese restaurant and you see white people. GTFO.

Dirtworks report

I completed my first Dirtworks yesterday. It was a great experience and a great day and i would do it all over again in a heartbeat even with the massive amounts of pain i received. I am however a disappointed at myself though as i feel i could have done better.

I set the alarm for 4AM and after a nice comfy hot shower i had a bowl of cereal and setup the bike on the car to roll out by 5AM. I met Kev at Dural maccas around 5:44AM ahead of schedule and drove down to St albans. The drive was great and the winding roads kept me awake. Arrived at st albans around 6:45AM well ahead of schedule and took our time to setup. By 8AM all the bmu boys Felix, Jarod, Brad were in. We registered and did some last minute prep and then rolled over to the start line.

For the race i decided to carry one 750ml bottle filled with staminade and drink a 500ml bottle of powerade prior to the race +  powerbar. I started towards the end of the first group and the pace from get go was pretty decent. Everyone was clocking around 35km/h on the road section and consequently when most people got to the big climb at 8km mark they decided to just walk it. That hill is MONSTEROUS. I have never seen a hill so big and riding it in a 1×9 setup would be absolutely stupid unless you are really really good. So i walked, and walked, and walked and walked. At the start of the walk i was huffing and puffing but towards the top of the climb the walk had actually allowed me time to settle down and feel decent again. Once i got to the top of the climb i started riding at a decent pace and immediately started over taking people.

This middle section has quite a lot of pinch climbs of significant elevation and it was fairly painful. However it seemed to me that i was either climbing better or forced to climb faster with the 32t ring up front whilst the others grinded their way up. Consequently i passed quite a few ppl during this section. Due to the road section at the start i was clearly able to see how further back i was from the lead group and by the middle section i estimated myself to be fairly in front of the second bunch in the first group. Towards the 28k water station i felt a tightness around my left calf muscles and i started drinking more and downed a bit of gel. I realised i was drinking way too less towards the start and decided to down the left over staminade and fill up at the 28k mark.

At the water station i downed 4 gummy bears *yum yum* had a bit of coke *no no* and filled up my 750ml water bottle. At this point i felt great and i was noticeably more playful on the bike and remember the course profiles i noted that it is more downhill than uphill from this point onwards. I tagged behind a girl and i think being lighter riders we had a fairly similar pace going on and we rode together with some other guys for the reminder of the off road section onto the road. As soon as i got on the road i checked my times and my kms on my computer and i got a reading of 1:50 and 18.57km or something like that. Doing some quick calculations in my head *which is actually pretty darn hard when you are working your body like that* suggested that i was on the way to a decent finish. I was of course happy at that point. I thought to myself the road is pretty much flat and it is much easier than off road all i had to do is maintain my pace. But i was wrong.

The same group i rode with off road rode together on road at a pace of around 30-35km/h and i felt ok but my legs didn’t agree. Cramps came suddenly and repeatedly for the remind of the road portion reducing my pace to at best 14km/h and at worst walking up hills. I received cramps in places on my leg that i didnt think had muscle…and overall it was hugely demoralising to see a huge amount of riders passing me left right and center. At this point i started doing whatever i could to finish the race. I downed whatever gel i had left, i drank all my water, and i experimented with positions on the bike i never tried before. To most benefit was tucking my knees in. I usually ride with my knees outwards as my knees tend to naturally just be like that and as soon as i tucked my knees in i felt the cramps go away for a little but obviously i knew at that stage it would never go away completely. I finished with a time of 2.25 on my computer and an official time of 2.32. Fair enough, i stopped for cramps a lot.

I have to say though that even given the light of the negative tone of this post i am still glad to have finished and done the event. Spending time with friends is enough and finishing the race and the few moments afterwards felt great. I just have to figure out why i cramp so much. Is it me not listening to my body? is it something wrong with the way i am pedalling? In any case i will figure it out and attack the DW next year for a better result.