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Thread: Today's Bike Ride

  1. #7861
    Senior Member Marco's Avatar
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    After months of avoiding the shortcut through the Shugborough Estate, I finally decided to see how the other half live as the bridle-way passes around 200m in front of the hall. The car park was rammed full, and there were people everywhere, but the main problem was riding on a loose gravel path with 23mm tyres inflated to over 100 psi.

    I can't say that the hall is attractive from the outside, as it's pig ugly, but the estate is enhanced by being surrounded by the River Sow to the west, the River Trent to the east and two branches of the West Coast Mainline - one running to the north and the other to the south.

    After reaching Great Haywood I continued north to Hixon, and then on to Amerton. It was to the north of here that the hedge cutting started (September the 15th ?). It was a single track road and the tractor was on the field side of the hedge to my left, so I crossed the grass in the middle and rode on the right had wheel track.

    Continuing northwards, I reached Dods Leigh, Lower Leigh, and then Upper Leigh before passing under the A50 and then the 1 in 7 descent to the Tean Valley. From here I started the 110m ascent through Lower Tean to the high point on the Hollington Road ridge. I did this climb a couple of months ago and found it tough. I'm pleased to say I found it easier this time so, in the absence of any power meter data as proof, I think I have improved.

    The return route was the same, including the 1 in 7 climb out of the Tean Valley, apart from a detour through Church Leigh. It was all going well, and the sun was warm and the wind light, until I heard a tractor just south of Fradswell and was subsequently stopped by it hedge cutting from the road side. I had to unclip to get around it, and thought it must have been cutting fast to cover a mile - until I met another tractor hedge cutting from the road side. The road was covered in hedge shrapnel and although I thought I'd avoided it all, something stuck to my front wheel and it didn't brush off with my hand.

    I must have spent 10 minutes at the side of the road trying to remove the thorn stump from the middle of my front tyre. As it was 3mm proud of the tyre I had to get it out, as otherwise riding the bike would have driven it through the tyre and into the inner tube. It's amazing what you can do with a car key, and it's probably more amazing how much abuse a Vittoria tyre, (bottom of the range Zaffiro, Graham), will take even when its over 10 years old.

    Amazingly, the front tyre held up and I thought I was ok - until 3 miles later when my rear tyre (Continental Grand Prix original) flattened. For the first time in years I had to use my mobile pump, but it only stayed inflated for 2km. So it took a further two inflations, and a bit of walking, to get back to the car near Milford.

    33.3 miles, 1335ft of ascent, 15-18 degrees C, two trashed tyres (they were old) and an inner-tube to try and repair.
    Last edited by Marco; 15-09-2021 at 07:15 PM.

  2. #7862
    Senior Member Marco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    Amazingly, the front tyre held up and I thought I was ok - until 3 miles later when my rear tyre (Continental Grand Prix original) flattened. For the first time in years I had to use my mobile pump, but it only stayed inflated for 2km. So it took a further two inflations, and a bit of walking, to get back to the car near Milford.

    33.3 miles, 1335ft of ascent, 15-18 degrees C, two trashed tyres (they were old) and an inner-tube to try and repair.
    It was worse than I thought; the thorn in the front tyre was 10mm through the tyre and the inner-tube. Quite how the tyre stayed inflated, having pumped it to 106psi before I started my ride, is beyond me.

    In a show of cowardice, I put on my winter wheels with 28mm tyres yesterday whilst I psyche myself up to repair two inner-tubes . As the weather was very pleasant here around the middle of the day I thought I'd go for an amble to the Mease Valley to check all was well with the wheels.

    On the way back I spied another cyclist ahead and after a spirited 2km stretch of pedalling, at a GPS certified speed of between 20 and 23 mph on bumpy tarmac, I was somewhat shocked to catch a 19 year old university student. What's more, he was riding, with some intent, on his new 3500 Cannondale fully kitted out with Ultegra, whilst I was riding my £249 Raleigh - with the heavy winter tyres.

    After a pleasant chat for three miles we parted company. Totally nice person, and very nice bike too, but I do scratch my head a bit when I consider the cost and 'value for money'.

  3. #7863
    Master molehill's Avatar
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    My longest road ride today at 52 miles and 5250ft. All went well till a bumble bee hit my mouth and stung me on the bottom lip. Hurt like hell an cycled 25 miles with it swelling up like an inner tube. Went down pub after to rehydrate and had to drink 2 pints through a straw, locals all took the p***!
    Don't roll with a pig in poo. You get covered in poo and the pig likes it.

  4. #7864
    Having done my 10th fell race for 2021 last weekend (Ilkley Moor) my bike mileage has suffered (2200 only so far) but my son is doing the Fred Whitton tomorrow so I thought I'd go out today for a pootle to empathise: Bolton Abbey, Appletreewick, Burnsall, Bardon Fell,...29 miles and 2500+ feet.

    I think the FW is a bit longer and higher than that - but, well, it's the thought that counts.

    Thinking of bees, inner tubes and Marco: I think I have stopped repairing inner tubes - life is short and all that - but when I see others on this thread ride 10 year old tyres and like the smell of glue, I feel feckless, profligate and racked with guilt.
    Last edited by Graham Breeze; 18-09-2021 at 10:41 PM.
    "...as dry as the Atacama desert".

  5. #7865
    Senior Member Marco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Graham Breeze View Post
    Thinking of bees, inner tubes and Marco: I think I have stopped repairing inner tubes - life is short and all that - but when I see others on this thread ride 10 year old tyres and like the smell of glue, I feel feckless, profligate and racked with guilt.
    When I was working long hours I calculated that in view of the cost of my precious free time it was actually cheaper to fit a new inner-tube, (particularly if I could buy them cheap/bulk), rather than repair a puncture. This was also exaggerated by the fact that modern puncture repair kits didn't seem to do what they were supposed to do (and used to do).

    A change of circumstances, and the purchase of a Park Tools puncture repair kit, has swung the balance the other way. On the subject of tyres, a front gets very little wear and although I don't have accurate annual mileage figures, it is only since my operation that I am doing clearly over 1000 miles a years (and this is spread across two bikes). Each to their own, but I tend to swap the front tyre to the back wheel after three years, preferring to have better grip on the front.

    It is also worth mentioning that matured tyres wear better. Back in the early 1980s, Pro bike teams used to mature tyres in dark cellars, (a bit like cheese, but with a different smell), for 2-3 years before use as it improved the puncture resistance and wear. As I tend to buy tyres when they are cheap, rather than when I need them, I end up keeping them for up to 5 years before they get fitted to a wheel.

  6. #7866
    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    When I was working long hours I calculated that in view of the cost of my precious free time it was actually cheaper to fit a new inner-tube, (particularly if I could buy them cheap/bulk), rather than repair a puncture. This was also exaggerated by the fact that modern puncture repair kits didn't seem to do what they were supposed to do (and used to do).

    A change of circumstances, and the purchase of a Park Tools puncture repair kit, has swung the balance the other way. On the subject of tyres, a front gets very little wear and although I don't have accurate annual mileage figures, it is only since my operation that I am doing clearly over 1000 miles a years (and this is spread across two bikes). Each to their own, but I tend to swap the front tyre to the back wheel after three years, preferring to have better grip on the front.

    It is also worth mentioning that matured tyres wear better. Back in the early 1980s, Pro bike teams used to mature tyres in dark cellars, (a bit like cheese, but with a different smell), for 2-3 years before use as it improved the puncture resistance and wear. As I tend to buy tyres when they are cheap, rather than when I need them, I end up keeping them for up to 5 years before they get fitted to a wheel.
    Noted.

    Being as old as I am, buying tyres for use in 5 years time might be somewhat optimistic.
    "...as dry as the Atacama desert".

  7. #7867
    Senior Member Marco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Graham Breeze View Post
    Being as old as I am, buying tyres for use in 5 years time might be somewhat optimistic.
    You can buy matured tyres, otherwise know as old stock

    Earlier in the year I bought some of these from a reputable retailer at a very good price



    I won't say how much I paid in case someone makes me an offer! (Only available in Red, 23mm and Slick)

  8. #7868
    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    You can buy matured tyres, otherwise know as old stock

    Earlier in the year I bought some of these from a reputable retailer at a very good price



    I won't say how much I paid in case someone makes me an offer! (Only available in Red, 23mm and Slick)
    With graphene?

    I pondered punctures today as I laboured up the side of Great Knoutberry Hill between Dent Railway Station and Garsdale Head thinking that it would be a long walk back to my car parked in Dent. I first went to Dent 50 years ago (a rich friend owned a second home there!) and then for a few years the wonderful Whernside race was organised by Lyon Equipment. The main road to Dent is from Sedbergh but the route from the south is glorious along a narow road, adjecant to Deepdale Beck and deep in its valley, that includes four road gates that have to be opened (and closed) - so not for those in a rush.

    The B6259 from Garsdale Head to Kirkby Stephen is another magical ride. It shares a valley with the Settle-Carlisle railway and the road and railway criss cross and one sees the splendid viaducts (not the hyped Ribblehead) along the way. And the ride back to Sedbergh from Kirkby Stephen has its diversions if you look at an OS map.

    And would you believe that a Castle Cement train pulled by a 66XXX pootled by to mark the occasion of my visit? Oh my.

    So 35 miles, 2400 feet (but most of them within a couple of miles) on a glorious autumn day.
    Last edited by Graham Breeze; 20-09-2021 at 10:57 PM.
    "...as dry as the Atacama desert".

  9. #7869
    Admin brett's Avatar
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    My Father is always telling me he doesn't buy green bananas anymore...

    Quote Originally Posted by Graham Breeze View Post
    Noted.

    Being as old as I am, buying tyres for use in 5 years time might be somewhat optimistic.

  10. #7870
    Quote Originally Posted by brett View Post
    My Father is always telling me he doesn't buy green bananas anymore...
    My mother is 99 in December and I changed a battery in her smoke alarm this week and told her it had been in for 4 years.

    She looked at me a bit thoughfully.
    "...as dry as the Atacama desert".

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