Tuesday, April 15, 2014

You Can't Spell "Innovation" Without "In," "Vat," or "On." Think About It.


Innovation is the driving force behind the bicycle.  So vital is innovation to the cycling industry that there's a company whose motto is "Innovate Or Die."  I can't remember who it is though.  I think maybe it's Cannondale.  Or is it Trek?

Doesn't matter really, it's all the same crap.

Anyway, innovation is what brought us from the pennyfarthing:

To the "safety bicycle:"

And then for a brief period back to the pennyfarthing, only with three wheels:

After that innovation stood still, trackstanding in time like a fakenger at  a red light that never changes.

Until now.

Thanks to the Internet, and in particular the popularity of crowd-sourced funding or whatever you call it, we have entered a new golden age of bicycling innovation fueled by the creative energy of people who have been riding bikes for months, and in some cases even a handful of years, though more often than not, I suspect, not at all.  Consider the work of Null Winds Technology:

No, "Null Winds" is not an insult, like "dim bulb" or "numbskull."  Null Winds is the cutting-edge think tank behind "Upper Wheel Fairings," which are basically skirt guards for Freds:

"For decades, the bicycling industry has been focussed on improving aerodynamics for the benefit of racing, where the use of fairings is strictly forbidden.  The rest of us, however, need not adhere to this senseless drag-inducing restriction."

As a potential investor (yeah, right), three (3) questions leap immediately to mind, and they are as follows:

1) If Freds won't put fenders on their bikes, what makes this null wind think they'll spoil the "elegant lines" of their plastic dork chariots with these?

2) What about crosswinds?

3) If you don't care about racing, why solicit endorsements from "Cat 2s?"

(What, you couldn't have found a Cat 1?  Give 'em a pair of free tires and they'll say just about anything.)

Love the Cat 2's use of "it is my conclusion," by the way.  That always makes you sound smart.

Anyway, even Freds who don't race should at least loosely adhere to the "senseless drag-inducing restriction" of racing, in the same way people who play pick-up basketball in the park need to adhere to the "senseless shortness-inducing restriction" of not being allowed to wear stilts.  Otherwise, what's to stop your local Sunday group ride from turning into an all-out recumbent freak-fest?

Fairings are only the beginning, so if you see them on your ride stomp them out immediately, lest you find yourself horizontal by next season.

Another part of the bicycle benefitting from both mental flatulence and rider inexperience is the so-called "clipless pedal:"

Like all Kickstarter inventions, this one has a backstory of mild incompetence behind it, and like all Kickstarter inventors, this one rides a Specialized:

Here's that story:

"I started mountain biking five years ago and I found myself struggling to clip into my pedals."

First of all, if you are still having trouble clipping into a pair of halfway decent mountain bike pedals after five years of riding then perhaps clipless pedals aren't for you.  Not that there's anything wrong with that, by the way!  Sure, clipless pedals have their benefits in certain situations, but if you find them to be a pain in the ass just ditch them and be done with it.

But common sense is not the hallmark of the Kickstarter inventor.  Instead, he also uses clipless pedals for his commute, where they really don't do shit for you:

"The more time I spent looking down at my pedals, the less time I spent paying attention to hazards on the road."

A couple of points:

1) Clipping into your pedals is like carrying a beverage from the bar back to your table.  The best way to do it successfully is to not look down;

2) If you're futzing with your clipless pedals to the extent that you risk getting hit by a car, you should not only consider a move to flat pedals, but you also might want to consider leasing a Hyundai in the interim.

But hey, if the mountain won't come to Fred, invent a little foot clitoris instead:

Apparently it's called the "Infinity Pedal," though I think the "Hot Spot" would be a better name:

(Platform schmatform.)

Also, the spring is conveniently exposed to the elements, which is exactly what you want in an all-terrain pedal:

Really, how do you market a mountain bike pedal without at least one image of the thing actually functioning in mud?

Then again, it did win an award--in Utah no less--so perhaps my concerns are unwarranted:

Also, apparently a huge number of people have similar trouble clipping into the many, many, many excellent clipless pedal options already on the market, because he's raised a shitload of money:

It's a real testament to the power of bicycle marketing that so many people who would clearly be much more happy and comfortable on simple platform pedals nevertheless insist on attaching themselves to their bicycles.

Penultimately, what do you think when you read this?

Triathlonbox - A British solution to Triathlon box juggling

Do you think engineering elegance?  Of course you don't!  "Triathlon?"  "British solution?"  Oh boy, this is gonna be ugly:

Leave it to the British to figure out how to convert a time trial bike into a bakfiets:

"No longer do you have to struggle with your box," says the video, and nor do you have to struggle to find a sordid double meaning in that sentence:

And check out those enthusiastic endorsements:

Good idea – Joe Friel - writer of Triathletes Training Bible (via Twitter)

Good idea indeed:

Lastly, Stephane in Munich informs me that you can now buy an appropriate balance bike for your "status child:"

Actually, they should offer that in adult sizes too.  It's a perfect solution for all those people having pedal trouble.


Anonymous said...

Early doors podium.

Fred Nifacent said...

Second podio

Jan! said...

Should I even try sprinting for third? Or turd?

balls™ said...

Is it time for lunch, already?


JB said...

My alarm just went off.

Twat.I.am said...

Top ten mo fo! Av it.

Andy Vibes said...

GC points.

Anonymous said...

How dare anyone try to make clipless pedals easier. They're trying to ruin some of my entertainment when riding.

Nothing better than stopping successfully with my platform pedals (they haven't failed me yet) at a light next to a guy who just spilled at a stop light who couldn't unclip fast enough.

And what happened? I remember back in my MT. biking days in the 90's that we purposely didn't use clips so we could bail if needed or kick a leg out to go around the more sever switchbacks faster. Seems kinda stupid using clips on a MT. bike.

Oh yeah suck it, weat coast top 10 you lazy east coast MF'ers.....

JB said...

There is a lot of stupid in today's post.

Top Something said...

how do you people get on here so early

Dan said...

Someone explain to me exactly how a bicycle can be "noticeably faster at any speed".

JLRB said...

Struggle with your box with a pedal clit to boot ...

The Cat 2 comment blew my mind - "noticeably faster at any speed"

Perception is reality, greed is good, blah blah blah

Olle Nilsson said...

[yawn] [blink] [blink]

Dooth said...

I just broke a null wind.

Anonymous said...

Scranus nacho cheese

McFlea said...


Anonymous said...

Clipless pedals on a mountain bike = stupid?

Isn't is a little early to be smoking crack?

anon said...

Wheel-cardboard-guy claims to "increase your penetration speed". I assume he means reducing the amount of foreplay required for coitus initiation. I'll take two, please.

Euro Spondee said...

I do hope to find myself find horizontal by next season

Anonymous said...

Those brits have defiled their own flag in the video, now defile yourself and show me those pale titties.

Eurodude said...

Haschish tuesday

Anonymous said...

"It is my conclusion..." That's like, I'll spare you the long-winded reasoning and just cut to the long-winded end part. They're all about nullifying wind after all.

The clitless shit's awesome -- technology is the solution to everything, especially problems caused by technology!

And let's just get this formality out of the way: "Like to struggle with the box on that pasty-white bird ay, chuff-chuff, I should say."

Anonymous said...

Ah I see Anonymous has already taken care of it. Very well then right then, no problem and that.

Anonymous said...

McFly should have fun with this today.

McFly said...

THe SpokesDork for Null Winds lost me at the 2:00 mark when he said needlessly augmented ....every augmentation I have ever seen was more than justified. Some more than others.

Pale Kathyrn has a Russian Girl That's Down on Her Luck look.

commentatorbot_93274 said...


What you fail to comprehend about the pedals is Utah is 90% high desert. There is such a thing as
"mud" there, but it's not the east coast kind.

Also, many of them Mormons are loaded. Most of the pedal dude's money probably came from the members of the church he attends.

The mormons that aren't loaded with moolah get reality tv shows made about them.

Another vote for platform pedals. They are hiiiiighly underrated in the world of bicycle gear fetish.

babble on said...

You caught the worm today, snobberdoodles...

Yup. Platform pedals are especially useful when you prefer wearing platform heels. But I still want Jimmy Choo to put cleats on a sweet pair of shoes for me...

babble on said...

OMG! Is that a two thousand dollar balance bike?!


Our world has gone straight to hell. Those status children are definitely generation SCREWED. We're all fucked, really...

Anonymous said...

Not often enough.


RoadQueen said...

I'll second that motion.

CommieCanuck said...

The Triathlon box is also a hovercraft.
My children are not status children, they were bred for labor.

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty bad at clipping in myself sometimes (like all the times I use 3-bolt-cleat godDAMNit road pedals), but Crank Brothers saves idjits like me with their eggbeater pedals. And those are already on the market, sometimes even on sale.

dancesonpedals said...

Triathlon Box Juggling?

Who cares; we need a solution to

cat juggling

Serial Retrogrouch said...

... headwind penetration speeds... it's a constant back and forth... at speed.

le Correcteur said...

Where the hell did you all come from, you previous 34 (and counting) commenters? Relegating me to pack fodder; damn!

No Reason said...

Big old Butt, oh yea

some reason said...

AND push ups make good cleavage

and nice girls get eaten for breakfast (on a good day)

Regular guy said...

Everything that needs to be said about this post has already been said.

But I believe Anon @9:10 is full-o-crap. Lots of us are competent enough to use clipless pedals on our mountain bikes without trouble.

Jon Webb said...

That video is really interesting. Neither one of them is looking at the camera, and they are both looking in different directions, off to the sides. And the second half has the woman looking down and then gradually raising her direction of view up to the point where she speaks. Kind of like a wind-up doll getting ready to speak.

Serial Retrogrouch said...

...i think triathlon box needs to have null winds, on a bike equiped with infinity pedals... then a null wind can juggle their triathlon box while penetrating at speed on their clitorical pedals... to infinity.

CommieCanuck said...

I believe Anon @9:10 is full-o-crap. Lots of us are competent enough to use clipless pedals on our mountain bikes without trouble.

Slipping your foot off a pedal can kill you, or definitely fuck up your legs. Clips are more important than helments.
I giggled at that comment, wonder what he would have thought about cleats and toe straps (yeah, I'm fucking old). So you fall down once in a while. BFD. It'sa ll about the indignity of cycling.

Good to hear he can come to a safe stop with his platform pedals...the rest of us use breaks.


recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

all-out recumbent freak-fest?™

Hell Yeah!!!

CommieCanuck said...

we need a solution to

cat juggling

That was solved in the 70s with a generous donation from Nathan R. Johnson during his philanthropic stage of his life.

James said...

it was unfortunate to see a Special..Ed come across the line first in the Paris-Rubikscube velodrome. just another coal to fuel the tradmark enforcement locomotive.

commentatorbot_9021734 said...

It's all about the indignity of cycling.

Fin. This blog is over. In fact, anything written about bikes on the Internets is over.

Where's that shed blog I've heard so much about?

Babble, more platform heels!!!

Mr Plow said...

Dan @ 9:35
Just imagine riding slower than you actually are then notice the difference. This worked well for me at first but now I have been imagining myself riding even slower. This has worked even better.

Vernal Magina said...

In first, I'm sure, with: I'd sure like to longeringly help TriathlonBox girl struggle with her box...

babble on said...

Roille - :D ++

Commie said "Mine were bred for labor." Ha! That's EXACTLY what mum ALWAYS said about me, and she meant it. It's true slipping off yer pedals can hurt bad. My left cleat is so worn it keeps slipping out.

FUCK. My whole bike is worn out, all except the titanium, it seems, and even that is looking rather been round the block-ish. New cables, new brakes, new drive train and a shifter re-build. Never mind the cotton tires for my shiny gold Shamals. The price of a solid winter's ride is what they're telling me. Funny how that only applies to high-end gear. Next year I am going full Fred and training on a winter bike.

babble on said...

Did I mention new cranks? Oh yeah, those too. The whole kit and kaboodle, really, when you consider the winter wheels I bought last month.

And still. Even so, I need another bike. How can this possibly be so?

THAT's the contrary nature of life in action. Sod's law.

James said...

commentatorbot 12:47

Anonymous said...

"...trackstanding in time like a fakenger at a red light that never changes."


ken e. said...


Thirsty One said...

What is the beer can capacity of the Triathlon Box?

Regular guy said...

I'm just old enough to have used toe clips and straps on a mountain bike, if the cantilevered clunkers of that time could be called that now. Then tried my original Look pedals and road shoes.

Try that without suspension.

Mercifully, the gods of the cycle world created pedals and shoes for MTB's and suspension, but dammit, back in the day!!!

Anonymous said...

My steel Colnago is almost as fast at 25 mph as My trek 5200 crabon is at 25 mph. My rando 25 mph is slower than the Colnago at 25 mph.

Which is all shit. The only way these have done 25 mph is in the trunk of the car(s) that I own, and even then the 25 mph only feels about 25 mph.

vsk primitive ncy4dm

wishiwasmerckx said...

Eggbeaters are de rigeur on the pro cyclocross circuit.

Anonymous said...

Snob - nice to see the drugs wore off without any permanent effects.


Jermaine said...

Let's get serious.

McFly said...

You can't spell Pasty Katherine without HANP RINT.

Anonymous said...

what language is the tri-box couple speeching?

JLRB said...

Babs @1:14 -

For some reason I read your post as saying "My fuck hole is worn out"

Much better that it is your bike - fuck holes must be far more expensive to replace than Fred bits

JLRB said...

so what is the deal with the Hot Spot (TM) pedal kickstarter - he won an award for bringing the concept to company in 2009 - 4 years later he is seeking $ through kickstarter?

wishiwasmerckx said...

"Plastic nerd chariot."

This is brilliant, and from this day forward, I will refer to my crabon-fibre steed thusly.

JB said...

Babble, how do you wear out brakes? Brake pads, yes; but the brakes themselves?

And what's wrong with the cranks?

Sounds like you should just buy a complete bike, it'd be cheaper. Then you could transfer the components to the Ti bike, if needed.

Wild One said...

I use to ride this old 70's Honda CB400F cafe style motorbike. (clubman bars, solo seat, etc...) I took the speedometer off and just ran a tach. That way that way it felt like I was going really fast even though I really wasn't. I'm not really sure what that has to do with anything here though.

Wild One said...


Anonymous said...

I had a situation where it kept coming out. The entry position was very very very low. Scranus low. After several attempts and minutes of fumbling and slipping and looks of disgust on her face I did the logical thing.

180. I guess it was fine. Couldn't really see her face after that.

Matt said...

I'm noticeably faster at any speed, too, but I did it by changing the wheel size on my bike computer. Now I saunter over to Dairy Queen at 27mph.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Comment #69

dancesonpedals said...

Bable- with all your miles, stuff will wear out...,.why not enjoy your good bike & ride it all year? Set up an extra room with a bike shower & sauna, and a valet named to take care of it after each ride:

"Oh Porterhouse, look at the wax build up on ti baby. I want that wax stripped off there, then I want them creamed and buffed with a fine chamois, and I want it now. Chop chop."

manactu epistle

babble on said...

JB - yes, sorry. Brake pads. Second pair in a few months... second chain in just over two months, too. And my LBS has seen so much of me that that they have mercy, or pity, or something and it won't cost me near what a new Ti Baby might, though as the replacements mount I do begin to wonder...

dancesonpedals - you do have a point. What price am I willing to pay for my happy place? Still. Someone has to pay Porterhouse's salary and on this writer's income that's not going to amount to a hill of beans once I have all the parts I need just to keep the rubber side down.

Olle Nilsson said...

Meh, triathlon box is whatever. Triathlon is all about buying stuff anyway, they'll sell out in no time. The pedals though? Snob's right, if you can't master something as basic as SPDs get yourself some chunky platforms. Regular platforms won't do, because obviously you have no coordination.

Tito said...

And fall in love?

CommieCanuck said...

Eggbeaters are de rigeur on the pro cyclocross circuit.

I commute on Eggbeaters. They are clip pedals for morons. If you have to get distracted with Eggbeaters, you should not chew gum or operate any heavy or light machinery, including paper staplers.

Comment deleted said...

Anon @ 3:02, the pegging discussion was over a month ago. Sorry.

Olle Nilsson said...

Commentatorbot 12:37 - Doesn't matter what the topic is, bikes, sheds, etc. The discussion invariably drifts into our sex lives, real or (mostly) otherwise.

babble on said...

JB - the bottom bracket was making an awful racket. The guys at the shop just kept tightening it, and applying lock-tight, and it would be quiet for a couple or three weeks before it started up again. Then, at the beginning of Sunday's group ride, it began making a gawd-awful racket the likes of which I've never heard before, with a creaking and a sort of ticking that sounded like something was rattling around in there. The chief wrench at my favourite LBS very eloquently said "I'm sorry, but it's right royally fucked." I was just about to replace the big ring along with the rear cluster, but fortunately the new cranks come with big and small rings, and so now I have a small ring for my spare parts box. The Centar cranks usually run $360 but this lovely LBS is selling it to me for $200, bless them. They also sold me a Lazer Helium helmet for $200 (instead of the recommended nearly $300) after selling me the standard issue Giro that I got a nasty concussion in.

You can see why I take people to that shop when they are looking for a new bike. They rock.

Anonymous said...

Snobby wrote;

"...uses clipless pedals for his commute, where they really don't do shit for you..."


What difference does the purpose of your ride make to the efficacy of cleated pedals?

Other than that, I have nothing to take issue with today. Just don't ever diss toeclips which should be mandatory on all bikes.

babble on said...

JLRB - LOL! Heaven forbid!! You know how they say Campy wears in, while Shimano wears out? I'm here to testify to the inaccuracy of that particular statement, but if any girl has bits that wear in rather than wear out, it's gotta be me. :D

the commentariat said...

BabbleOn, I swear sometimes this blog is 20% about bikes and 80% about your vagina, and I like it that way.

the commentariat said...

InSoviet Russia, eggbeaters commute on you!

Michael said...

Just beat it, you two.

babble on said...

LOL! Well, really... in the end, isn't everything about sex?

really-not-a-robot said...


It sounds like you got the 10-speed-chain-wears-out-damn-quick feature. I will switch to 9-speed at some point because of it.

I sold some Campag way back in the day and only had high-KM's with super record.

IMHO, this is a golden opportunity to buy a lightly used aluminum bike with 9-speed stuff. The obsession with equipment means they are cheap, and the number of former customers the bike industry has scorned means they are plentiful.

Anonymous said...

Is there any other sport that exists where we see so much individuality and free-thinking innovation? People pay for a car and are content with it, but your own bicycle for some reason, MUST always be improved upon. What ion s it with us? Do we all think we are so alternative and outside the norm that we just have to enlighten others with our ingenuity? A good chunk of it is laughable, but occasionally some Special Fred will get lucky.

If googling 'trithlon sucks' won't give you the answers on why it does suck, the necessity of that box clearly does. What goes on inside a tri guys head the night before a race? They are like rich, organized crack heads, except that exercise and the need to be an 'inspiration' to everyone they tell about their exercise accomplishments are their crack.

commentatorbot_093214 said...

They are like rich, organized crack heads

Who stopped doing crack and exercise instead. Exchanging one addiction for another. Recovering addicts is a good source of new suckers.

I am not one to judge too much. They endure the indignity of doing three activities poorly while I concentrate on doing only cycling poorly.

Yes, I guess the bicycle cycleen is really just the starting place for the more interesting things in life.

Anonymous said...

85 comments and no one has pointed out her box has a wet and a dry section???

TryTriToFly said...

I don't know why you feel you need to disparage tri-athalon'ers. If you tried one, I bet you'd love it!

The camaraderie before and after the race is infectious and you'll be on a spiritual high for a week after the race. My tri-club always goes to First Watch after the races to compare our bumps and bruises. At the last race, my bike was in the wrong ring gear and I couldn't get going quickly enough and I fell over. Luckily it was into the grass! LOL.

Anywho, come on in, the water's fine!~



babble on said...

Not a robot... I was just thankful not to replace an eleven speed! Damned quick is relative, though. I've logged over 8500 km since October.

Still. I've ridden bikes through the winter for years on end without seeing anything like the kind of wear and tear those miles left on my Campy drive train.

Qu'est ce que le fuck? You'd think high-end would imply long-lasting.

robot captcha says
assiamn their


JB said...

Anon @5:17: No one else watched the video.

Regular guy said...

Anon@5:01, well, if bikes could get 100,000+ miles with nothing much more than a hand-full of oil changes and a few new tires, maybe we wouldn't spend so much time "improving" them.

In my case, I wear something out every two months or so and with each new part, it seems the ride is improved in some way. And besides, it just so easy to replace parts on a bike. I don't think I've had a bike that has lasted more than a year with original parts intact, except my old Schwinn 5-speed.

wishiwasmerckx said...

BabbleOn, wearing chains out that quickly is evocative of excessive cross-over. On an 11-speed drivetrain, whilst in the big ring, forego the three biggest cogs. Whilst in the small ring, avoid the three smallest cogs. Whilst at the bar, avoid CommieCanuck.

Follow these three simple rules and you will enjoy a better cycling experience.

babble on said...

Huh. I am careful to avoid cross-over with the last two, not the last three, and the guys at the LBS have been emphatic in their claims that replacing the chain more often will extend the life of the cluster and rings.

Anonymous said...

Any child riding a 1,499 Euro balance bike is a status child.

Flyover BC said...

Who needs a fairing when you can draft?

And, It didn't look ugly to me.

wishiwasmerckx said...

If you are truly attuned to your machine, you can actually feel the resistance with your legs whilst pedaling when you reach the point of excessive crossover. It is a subtle feeling of friction from the chain.

As to chainring and cog wear, an eighth of a twist of the barrel adjuster should dial it back in.

As to chain replacement, do so when shifting becomes imprecise, not on some pre-ordained schedule.

As for saddle replacement, I recommend monthly. Then offer up the old one for auction to us pathetic losers on the comment board. You will make enough money to buy all the components your heart desires.

Anonymous said...

you know you're a Cat-2 if you conclude that a bike with fairings travelling at 50 km/hr is faster than a fairingless bike travelling at 50 km/hr.

wishiwasmerckx said...

Will you guys contribute to my spoke-card and clothespin kickstarter campaign? Please? I'm going to be RICH, I tell you, RICH!

Anonymous said...

I am the Wayne Gretzky of comments

Freddy Murcks said...

I am in the Bahamas this week. I haven't seen a single fred sled, but I have seen a few people riding piece of shit bikes purely for transportation. It goes without saying, but I will say it anyway: I have not seen a single clitless pedal since I left the mainland US.

council eldrowt

Anonymous said...

Pro Mechanic here.

Never clean your chain: Faster wear

Over/under lube your chain: Faster wear

Ride in rain/mud often: Faster wear

Ride in your smaller cogs/cross gears: Faster wear

Tall and/or heavy: Faster wear

Pedal Masher: Faster wear

Ride your bike a lot: Faster wear.

commentatorbot_92374 said...

Regular guy,

The only way you are wearing something out every two months is if you are running super low budget kit. That's cool. Some of us aren't dentists with a stable of bikes including the "old" Serotta.

Otherwise, the ennui phase of your "riding career" hasn't yet come. Some of us will meet you there.

Babble, that's quite a bit of time in the saddle. Definitely chain replacement territory. Stay safe and more heels please.

dancesonpedals said...

ge-"triathlon is all about buying stuff"

More like, it's all about getting spammed. Up to now I've only done small tri's with limited fields...Sleepy Hollow, Lake George's North Country Tri...but since entering the NYC Tri, I get discount offers on wetsuits, swim clinics & last week a tri bag carrying service (who needs a box when you can hire someone to set everything up for you)

Tri let's you ride on roads closed by the cops after swimming in the Hudson...running, unfortunately, blows chunks

Anonymous said...

Clean, rinse, dry your chain often: Less wear

Use lube frequently, but sparingly: Less wear

Shorter, lighter rider: Less wear

Smooth pedaling/shifting technique: Less wear

Use your whole cassette, not just 3 gears: Less wear

Buy expensive, treated, coated, plated cassette cogs: Less wear

Ride less: Less wear

Replace your chain before 1/8" of elongation, you _might_ extend the life of your dumb, paper thin 11 speed cassette cogs. Use a ruler, pin to pin.

Give the money you save to charity. Or if you ride until it skips, give the time. The end.

Anonymous said...

I thought high-end was high-end because you can have it rebuilt & keep using it forever whereas low-end stuff, you basically just wear out & toss. SO, per part, poor people pay less than dentists, but over a lifetime, poor people pay way more, and consume more resources, by buying the same part over & over. That's what the high-school graduate behind the LBS counter told me anyway.

commentatorbot_93274 said...

Well Anonymous at 7:17....

The bike industry has gotten wise to the whole "no maintenance possible" game.

Bottom brackets.
Some rims/wheels.
Gear changers.
And now... electro gear changers!

The higher end stuff lasts longer, for sure. But the whole reason for top-of-the-line kit is gone with maintenance eliminated.

I've got too much time on my hands this evening.

ken e. said...


wishiwasmerckx said...

Anon 7:08, ok, I'll bite. So how does over-lubing your chain shorten its life? Attracts extra grime?

Anonymous said...

I've been running the original chain on my for years, the front gears now resembling a shark tooth shape. I never changed it but frequently cleaned it, lubed it when it got squeeky, and it always worked fine.

I put a new chain on after reading these comments about the importance of replacing your chain, and now my chain seems to be mis-shifting on the back gears. Is it common to need a gear adjustment after replacing a chain? She's got 3 gears in the front and 9 out back, thanks for any interest.

Some random cyclist said...

Dear Commentariat, I cleaned and lubed my wife's vagina, and now it makes an annoying clicking sound whenever I shift gears during coitus.

Any advice?

Anonymous said...

Avoid whilst to sound unpretentious.

Sheldon Motherfuckin Brown, Back From The Grave said...

7:37 - I know you're probably fuckin' with me but on the off chance that you're not: Your chain was worn, and your chainrings & cogs (I still think you're probably fuckin with me) are worn. Now you've got an unworn chain on worn rings & cogs, hence the mismatch. Put the old chain back on, or replace the rings & cogs.

Anonymous said...

Sheldon also says....

Get 100k on an old English 3 speed no problem....

But you'll have to swap to cleats if you can't handle keeping your feet on the platforms. what a bunch of whimps.

Anonymous said...

Jewish people always make people laugh lol I know this because I'm a Jew myself and a lot of people think I'm funny for some reason lol ._.

Orestes Munn said...

Pro mechanic! Oh my dear, sainted aunt!

What discussion of catenary hygiene would be complete without a wee discursion into tribolobgy? I use extra virgin Provençal huile de chastaigne. In fact, no synthetic products touch my bicycle.

Mr Nofish said...

So the fairings guys took the trouble of putting their own stickers on the downtube and yet the bike sports one of those low-end casual/megaplush SMPs set lower than the bars.

Might as well slap curved-bars-like-they-use-in-the-Tour-De-France on a CitiBike and call it a day.

Olle Nilsson said...

Sheldon - yeah he's definitely fuckin with you, but maybe somebody learned something.

And wiwm, you try riding in Vancouver all winter and see how well your chain fares from 6 months of rain and road grit. No cross chaining required.

wishiwasmerckx said...

ge, maybe so. Back in the day, we used to dip our chain in paraffin for winter riding. I don't suppose anybody does that anymore, eh?

I now live in a more temperate climate making such an exercise unnecessary.

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Anonymous said...

Pro Vagchanic here.

Never clean your vag: Faster wear

Over/under lube your vag: Faster wear

Sex in rain/mud often: Faster wear

Sex in your smaller hole/cross insertion: Faster wear

Tall and/or heavy guys: Faster wear

Scranus Masher: Faster wear

Ride your plumber a lot: Faster wear.

Orestes Munn said...

Paraffin. I do indeed remember that phase, as well as cans of spray wax, made for moto chains. The ultimate chain fetish accessory, however, was the little doucheur with degreaser reservoir and the brushes.

McFly said...

I don't wanna be the douchewalla that gets on a sexing blog and talks aboot beikz but have youz seen the new XTR schtuff via Stevil?

Anonymous said...

I am starting a kickstarter campaign. will you guys & gals send me some monies?

wishiwasmerckx said...

Fred, I still have one of those clamp-onto-the-chain reservoirs!

JB said...

I'm starting a Kickstarter campaign because I want the new XTR shtuff, but I can barely justify the cost of XT.

babble on said...

WAX? You want I should WAX my chain?! I was having a hard enough time deciding between wet and dry lube!

wishiwasmerckx said...

Something tells me that you are no stranger to waxing.

wishiwasmerckx said...

...or lube.

babble on said...

LOL! Er... good point.

babble on said...

Huh. The only wax I have on hand is sex wax for a surfboard. It's not working very well...

Anonymous said...

Yup, Pro Mechanic here again. Get on your knees and place your grindy, creaky, wobbly bike before me... I will treat you like the bitch you are.

If you ride your bike 8000+ kilometers, SHIT IS GOING TO WEAR OUT no matter how much time you spend cleaning and lubing it.

Whoever said "DuraAce 9 speed" has a good point. You're going to pay through the ass for "just one more gear". It's how (this) industry likes it.

That said, no matter if you're fat and lazy or light and ambitious (with the chain cleaning, that is), AVOID E.L.S. - expensive, lightweight shit. A titanium component maker in the 90s trademarked that acronym, but I can't recall which one...

Wax lube is good in dry, sandy climates. The rest: it's all how/when you apply it.

Yes, I dipped my chain in hot paraffin once.

No, "my chain" is not a euphemism for my penis.

Even ignoring the fire hazard part of it, it's not a worthwhile endeavor.

Expensive, plated chains (and the hardened, plated drivetrains they are attached to) typically DO last longer. Cheaper chains can be replaced more frequently. Both options are fine.

Buy a chain that has a connecting link, and wash/lube the fucking thing once and awhile. Your bike will be nicer to ride.

The end.

leroy said...

My dog thinks the Triathlon Box is a great idea, but wonders how much ice and beer it can hold.

I thought the sales pitch was great, but it reminded me of the Monty Python sketch where John Cleese asks his colleagues pretending to be schoolchildren if they can identify the larch.

McFly said...

Babble you should look into D.I.D. or Regina fixing you up with an O-ring chain. It will rob 15% of your power but will last forever.

I assmue you are no stranger to weilding power over the opposite sex.

Orestes Munn said...

Chains and sprockets. Fully recyclable parts costing less than $1,000. Springtime. Almost makes me want to be a land Fred again.

unspeakably gazLim

babble on said...

Yeah, that's what the guys at the shop said, too. I do clean it, every time I ride, but the miles have had their way. I keep buying ELS Campy components, but I very nearly bought a big BBB ring, until the cranks went all cranky on me.

Next year's winter Fred sled will be a 9 speed work horse, unless I've suddenly made a fortune peddling my ass...

babble on said...

15% is a lot when you're as dense as I am!

babble on said...

15% indeed. I need all the power I can get!

Would you suggest such a thing to Zena?

Matt said...

Paraffin still works. The way to minimize fire hazard is to keep it in an old Crock-Pot. Cook that sucker up, hang it above the Crock-Pot when done to drain, chain well-lubed for winter. Also note, it's Crock-Pot, NOT Cock-Pot. Boy, that can be a painful mistake!

Regular guy said...

Jeeze, I don't mind being lectured by "pro mechanics". But not ones who lack a sense of humor.

I've been the pro mechanic, and I've probably laced and trued more wheels than anyone would care to. I guess I've reached the ennui phase of bike maintenance long ago. The conditions that I ride in and my 180lb pedal masher bulk just tend to wear things out.

Orestes Munn said...

Pro Mechanic ennui was the starting point for the Wright brothers, but all we seem to get these days is tri-boxes and sternum pods.

Anonymous said...

For some reason I was expecting the guy in that video to suddenly shout "Now is the time on Triathlonbox when we dance!".

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