Category Archives: Equipment

Everyone should know about their equipment.

A better use for triathelete time trial handlebars….

Dear Rouleurs,

I’ve fallen out of love with Mr Zuckerberg’s social behemoth, Facebook.  It’s big brother use of my activity data just leaves me cold and wondering when Skynet will arrive.  Nevertheless, the occasional post from cycling magazines turns up a gem and this is one of them.  Can’t help but wonder if Aussie didn’t ‘invent’ this.

Not that I’ve advocating drink-riding or any other similar foolishness.

Until next time, ride safe and sober,

Marv

 

Merry Christmas from MMT

Dear Rouleurs,

November and December have vanished in the blink of an eye, and MMT has not posted anything for over three weeks. MMT is way behind on updating his bike log.  A quick look at MMT’s Strava account reveals a grand total of almost 7,500 Km.  MMT has averaged 5 rides  and 160 Km a week all year.  Damn….thats not bad.  When MMT returns to work next year he’ll have to do the math and see where he ended up.

Santa came early for MMT.  He took delivery of a very cool and fast pair of Aeolus 5 wheels for his beloved Domane.  Whilst his wallet will hurt for a few months, the wheels have been absolutely superb and worth the $4,000 they cost.

The other nifty addition, to MMT’s never ending collection of bike paraphernalia, has been a Topeak bike seat.  This has been installed on Marv’s old Canondale F4, for the specific purpose of doing Sunday morning rides to the park with gorgeous half-pint daughter.  Here she is locked into the seat and enjoying being the centre of attention.

Change of topic, MMT scanned an article on Richie Porte a few months ago.  He’s Tasmania’s (er…Australia’s as well) best chance to win the Tour de France next year.  He had a horrific stack this year breaking his pelvis among other things.  You can see the screen capture of this incident, that I posted a few months ago.  The good news is that he is back training.  Another interesting development was the departure of Simon Gerrans to Porte’s Team BMC Racing.  That could make for a very interesting combination on the road next year.  Anyhow here’s blatant breach of copyright from Herald Sun a few months ago.

So finally, MMT and famil would like to wish any that may have accidently stumbled across this blog, a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous 2018.

Until next time, ride safe.

Marv

 

 

 

What to do with all those old rubber inner tubes??

Dear Roulers,

Alas, I’ve been busy at work and sick…sigh…again, resulting in this blog being sadly neglected….Booooooo!!!!!!!!.  However its a quiet Friday afternoon and all my co-workers have nicked off early so I’m doing some blogging.  This blog is a bit of hack job/outright theft of an article I read in the May 2017 version of Bicycle Times.  Hopefully the publisher’s lawyers won’t be pursuing me for copyright/IP theft :-).

No matter, this article resonated with MMT as he was wondering what the hell to do with all the old and crappy inner tubes he has.  The question being, if a tube has been patched 3 or 4 times, isn’t it time to let it go?  In this age of recycling shouldn’t there be another use for these things.  Well this arch-plagiarist thinks so. So here’s five really cool uses of old inner tubes.

   
Tie Down Straps
Go to a camping store and find some 1 inch buckles.  A 28mm tube should thread through fairly easily.  They are perfect for strapping things down to a rack, securing items to your handle bars or pretty much anything you might use a bungee cord for.
 Loops
These can be used to hold new inner tubes, holding tools together so they don’t rattle or even holding a flashlight on the handle bars.  Mountain bike tubes seems to work best.
   
Pant Cuff
This one requires a bit more work.  Find some velcro, super glue and a length of rubber.  Figure out the right length for securing your pants/jeans.  Alternately, you could sow the velcro on instead.
Protective Chain Cover
This is an awesome idea.  Thread your locking chain through the tube to stop it from scratching the bike frame or some other part.
 
Shoe Laces
This really surprised MMT.  Cut the length ways into strips of about 1 cm wide.  Follow the ribs of the tube so they are straight.  Cut them to length. Most laces are of the 55cm to 75cm variety.  Thread them through and tie them up.  You should be able to slip them on without untying them.

Now MMT did a smidge more research care of Google and found another set of interesting uses:

  • Fire starters: An inch-long bit wrapped around some kindling will start a fire, even in the rain.
  • Keep a bit of inner tube on your handlebars. Put it over the brake, locking your bike wheel, very useful when taking your bike on a train or bus.
  • Bits of inner tube make a great cushion between various attachments on your bike, much better than the insets that come with the items.
  • Wrap your D-Lock in inner tube to prevent damage to your bicycle’s paint.
  • Put inner tube on your rack. Your panniers will then fit perfectly and won’t rattle.
  • Inner tube make a great seal. It can be used to make lights waterproof.
  • Use as a seal round fuel or water bottles to stop them leaking

How about that for a list??

Until next time ride safe

Marv

Marv’s post-Christmas childcare blues

 

Dear Roulers,

The baton of primary child carer has been passed to me and I’m officially in ‘daddy daycare’ mode. My main job is to transition my darling daughter into childcare.  My wife, the other member of Team MMT, has had really mixed feelings about this, after having nearly 7 months leave. Alas all of us will need to return to our employment and keep our places in the great rat race that is working in Melbourne CBD.  Happily, our daughter seems to be adjusting to the transition.  We both draw solace from knowing that she’s being cared for in a centre nearby to our respective workplaces. 

So onto cycling, MMT is still recovering from his brush with pneumonia which has really reduced my horsepower.  This has taken some of the gloss MMT’s main Christmas present.  For Christmas, MMT received an annual membership to Rapha Cycle Club from his wife.  MMT rolled up to his first ride last week.  RCC operates 2 rides during the working week.  The Thursday one leaves from Elwood’s Turtle Cafe and cruises down to Mordialloc and returns via the Nepean Highway.  I should qualify that description of the route with “I think’ as this bunch has dropped me 2 out of 2 rides, after about 10kms. It’s happening on the ramp that leads into Blackrock.  MMT just can’t seem to find the grunt to keep up with these guys.

Much of what MMT has read suggests that to become a faster, better rider you have to start riding with people are better than you. So it seems I have had my wish granted. These guys are moving much quicker than what RCC App says is the overall speed for this ride. So I’m going to  have to suck this up and get back to shedding unwanted kilos and getting my pre-Christmas conditioning back. I’m hoping that another new member will turn up one morning and challenge me for latern rouge that I seem to keep ‘winning’.  May be I’ll form up the second bunch that that the Rapha app speaks of 😉  

So onto the main topic of this blog, my new Trek Domane SLR 6 Disc.  First let me say I’m in love.  Its taken me awhile to get used to the geometry and the stopping power of the disc brakes.  Here’s a picture of MMT’s new machine.

Its soooo beautiful. My Trek Domane SLR 6 Disc

The first couple of weeks were driving MMT a bit nuts as the relaxed geometry and bike fit were creating aches and pains in places that weren’t there before.  The most significant problem being the saddle, which seemed to be creating friction and soreness in a area that MMT would rather not have it.  So after a few adjustments in seat post height and saddle position, it looks like that problem is now resolved. So happily, it looks like I have the bike and enough conditioning to take on, at least, the 65km version of the Cadel Evan’s Peoples Ride next weekend.  A weeks ago I wasn’t sure that I had either.

So in a couple of weeks time I’ll write up my experiences on that ride.  Last time I did in 2015 and it was great fun.

Until next time ride safe

Marv