Saturday, May 25, 2019

Summer is here. Time for new cleats.

I waited until my semester ended to put new SPD-SL cleats on my Sidi shoes. I don’t know why I made that a thing. But I did. Looks like I almost waited too long.

These lasted about a year. I guess they are just another consumable, but I'm always surprised how quickly I trash them. With each new install I promise myself I'll be careful, use cleat covers more often, and try to not walk in them. Then I break my promises.

Cleat covers are a pain. They almost, but don't quite fit in a jersey pocket. And when I use them I inevitably try to ride again without taking them off. (It doesn't work.)

My prediction: I'll repeat the same process with these.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Bike maintenance day: Tires, chains, pads, cleaning

Yesterday I spent way too much time working on Tricia's bike and my bike. It took hours and hours to do what pro could do in an hour.

  • Used the ultrasonic cleaner on our cassettes (very clean now!)
  • Installed new tire on both bikes 
  • Install new chains
  • Installed new brake pads
  • Cleaned
  • Adjusted as needed
That doesn't seem like much, but it was.

I finally gave in and am giving 25mm tires a shot. I bought Michelin Power Endurance. I wonder if I'll even notice the difference from my Michelin Pro4 23s.

Tricia has been using Gatorskin 25s, but I put Continental Grand Prix 4-Season Special Edition 25s on her ride. They are supposed to be more supple and better in wet conditions at only a slight decrease in puncture resistance. We'll see what she thinks.

When did chains get so expensive? I think $25 is an OK price, but $40 or even $80? That seems crazy. I'm sticking with Ultegra for now, but may drop a level or two, especially for the commuter bikes, which also need chains. It's so had to know what matters in terms of quality and lifespan.

UPDATE: Went for a ride to try it out and broke a rear spoke. No, I don't see how it could be related. It's just another annoyance. At least I have a spare set of perfectly fine wheels.

Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Primavera Century, metric version 2019

The weather didn't register in my weather app. It looked to be a cool but OK day. Instead, when we arrived it was misting heavily. But we'd paid, so we started.

We had an event that evening, so we planned on the 85 miles route. But with all the wet, and having finished the beautiful Calavaras Road section we said "Screw it" and jumped on the metric course. I'm glad we did,

The course runs uphill, parallel  to I 580 Dublin Canyon Road and the way to Palmaras Road. It's always an annoying joyless uphill grunt that seems to take forever. This day it had a massive headwind, so much that we had to pedal even when we hit the downhill section.

Still, fun was had, bikes were ridden, and the food at the end was really nice. And we did get 4000 feet of climbing in those 60 miles.