TESTING THE ROUBAIX

With Spring Break upon us and delightful warm spring bluebird day weather there is NO EXCUSE not to be out there testing the new toy!

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Ready to go

Another visit to my Doctor on 3/28/17 and I would like to have 500 of my 2017 target of 3000 miles in the books by then. Might be pushing it a bit but I now have 389.35 so only a smidge over 100 miles for my Spring Break week.

Sunday morning and time to deal with the last bits on the Roubaix. Front brake cable to be connected, tighten up all the handlebar allen bolts. Measure the seat post height on the Giant and set the Roubaix to the same. Test the new pedal cleats and their release mechanism as we don’t want an “arse over header” in the driveway if I can’t get my feet on the ground! Finally, fit the new Cateye speedo odometer and spin the wheel.

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Front brake done

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The numbers may be too small !

New plans with the Roubaix are for longer daily distances with the higher speeds of the road bike. This will mean I’m farther from home and will therefore need a “pack” for essentials. I used to use  the tested and true Camelbak back pack but being against my back it made me sweat profusely in the Phoenix sun. So for Colorado I’m going to revert to the “fanny pack” that I have always used on all my Trials bikes.

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Having tested it with the “load” …… its a bit small! Never mind it will do for Trials

Standard kit to be carried will be: spare tubes and of course the pump! Cell phone with its camera, the wallet, a few tools and cable ties and a couple of icy cold bottles of Gatorade.  No more packs of cigarettes and lighters to even think about.

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My current endeavors have seen my opening run from the house setting off into an Easterly wind and with a slight uphill and false flat scenario. This can be bloody hard work on the 70 year old legs and body. However once the first mile is in the books it seems to get easier as you know its very slightly downhill when I turn round and there will be a tailwind on the way home. I used to go outbound towards Telluride for 1.25 miles but recently have extended this up to my furthest distance of 4.60 miles. In truth this has been pushing my luck without the “essentials” and would be a bloody long walk home if I got a flat tire.

This summer the intention will be to ride as far as South Fork (14.00) before turning round. Eventually, perhaps, have Brenda take the car to Rico and drop me off for the 38 mile run home ?

Seems the weather was too good to be true and after Wednesday this week we are back to rain and snow and a 20 degree temp drop just to remind us its only March.

After my standard ride yesterday, which was good, time for some Shade Garden clean up and a few spring time beers …. very nice! The Roubaix did not get its test ride.

Lots of things to do around the house and garden this week so busy,  busy and then the potential “wet weather program” of pool practice as pool has NOT been going so well of late becoming almost novice like in its execution and decidedly lacking in finesse!

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Very, very smooth!

The first ride is in the books, feels a bit strange after the Mountain Bike but I have to say IT is VERY SMOOTH ! The bike has SRAM Force which is their next to top of the line system and has the “double click” changing system. Press once and hear a click and the system upshifts. Press twice (one longer sweep) and the system downshifts. The riding position is obviously very different and might require a more angled stem riser to put me in a more upright posture. However, for a first ride I’m quite impressed!

The bottom bracket on the Roubaix is much closer to the ground than the Giant and obviously this means I can touch the ground on tip toe while still seated. I think I would like the bars about 2″ higher for the “modern” more upright posture so that needs to be investigated with a visit or two to local bicycle shops.

A lot of garden work on the “Dump” and “Shower” signs after the winter storms and they are back up fighting the gusting winds. Time for a few stickers on the new ultra light weight Lazer helmet. It matches the bike color scheme beautifully and I’m well pleased.

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Second ride into a headwind and with such a light machine a few pedal strokes and the speed surges up!  So far haven’t got into the higher gears but I’m keen to see the 20 mph + numbers come up.

Bad weather coming in tonight so a ride tomorrow looks unlikely but you never know. The 500 target is well in sight, and as the article closes I’ve hit 470.59 and its only 3/22/17.

 

TONY DOWN

 

 

 

 

OPEN THE BOX !

Finally, having had the precious cargo of the S Works Roubaix in its packaging downstairs for a week, the time has come to open the box!

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My assumptions are: the wheels have been taken out, the handlebars are off, the seat post has been removed………. We will now see if you are right, Sherlock.

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Yes and No. The front wheel was out, back still in. Handlebars off but cables all connected apart from front brake. Tires are soft, seat post off and as I already knew no pedals. It was beautifully packed with copious amounts of bubble wrap, Styrofoam tubing, and sheets of brown paper. Delicate work with the Stanley knife cutting through tape galore exposing more and more gorgeous paintwork.

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Ooooooh!!!!

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Be very careful

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Coming together

Time for a little thinks bubble? Although these bikes are built in the USA the primary teams using them on the World Circuit are all based in Europe. What nuts and bolts do they use? As I suspected its Metric but for some strange reason the nut on the pedal (other than the rider) is 9/16 ????

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100 lbs goes in

Having worked out how the valve works on these high pressure tires 100lbs goes in both, pedals greased, left and right threads and the bike is back right side up.

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NEW pedals on

Last few adjustments to make, seat height, handlebar position and reconnect that front brake cable and tighten up the headstock. Should be ready for “it’s” test run come Sunday morning!!

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Only pedal tension to check

Meanwhile the Giant MTB has not been idle and the pedals have punched out 361.29 miles at close of play Thursday 16th. Current target is the 400 mile banner by Sunday.

Amazing deal on Ebay Thursday night! For the FIFTH time I asked a seller for the chest size on a cycling shirt that goes beautifully with the new Specialized Roubaix.

I had previously pointed out various things that I thought were WRONG in her listing and in some cases she corrected them but NEVER did what I asked for and re-measured the chest armpit to armpit!

The listing gave the measurement as XL and she claimed it measured 18″ armpit to armpit and was a 36″chest which in men’s wear would be a small.

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Looking at the picture, the shirt appeared “baggy” on the model and assuming a bust measurement of 36 the shirt just had to be bigger, so once more I requested the size!

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The shirt was re-measured at 44″ and now the rub……… she offered it to me for $1.00 !!!!! + shipping!!!!!!!!!!! …… well, of course I said “YES”

 

TONY DOWN

EXCITEMENT BUILDS TO FEVER PITCH

Just over a week has elapsed since the fickle finger of fate tapped the “Buy It Now” button for the “S-Works Specialized Roubaix” bicycle that I wanted.

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Since then, despite snow storms, mud days and some very variable weather, goodies to feed the new “wonder cycle” have been pouring in to match its arrival deadline.

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I’ve been glued to the Fed-Ex web site watching the progress on my new wonder cycle as it has been wandering across the country. From its start point in deepest Alabama at Hoover on Feb 27 it made it to Birmingham AL on the 28th, passed through Nashville TN and night stopped in Geary OK on Mar 1st. Up very early it made it to Winslow AZ and by mid afternoon was off again to Phoenix AZ. A 12 hour layover in Phoenix before another 12 hour run to Aztec NM where it arrived at 0443 on Saturday Mar 4th. Should be with me sometime on Monday.

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Waiting on the Speedo

Meanwhile the speedo arrived, and the mystery pedals came in after going round CA for a day or two.

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Got just the place for you 2 !

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……. and finally on my return the “box” has arrived. Now I need to extract it and start the rebuild………. and now here we are on Saturday 11th March and the box hasn’t moved!!! Maybe Sunday?

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The weather has changed, temps are way up hitting the 60’s, bugs, cyclists, and dumb arsed Harley riders are all out!

More exciting offers from Ebay and some items too hard to resist. A couple of pairs of shorts are coming my way and the next quest is for a NEW helmet to go with all my new color schemes. Trouble is my head size is right between Medium and Large and so far I haven’t found a local dealer who carries what I want so I can try them on for fit.

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The KASK Vertigo in British colors

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Suomy Timeless

So far this is what I like but of course all this might change in a heartbeat.

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Really nice but NOT in my size

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This one is ME but a little expensive

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Colors are right, my size, my price

……… and then a few more contestants entered the arena …… oh, decision, decision ???

 

TONY DOWN

 

 

 

ANOTHER SNOW DAY ?

The forecast weather keeps changing and by my bedtime, around 2200, there is an inch or so on the rail and the forecast is 4-8″ over night and another 2-4″ on Tuesday morning.

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0430 and the alarm goes off so stagger into the kitchen for life giving coffee to see about 9″ on the rail. Strange no phone call from the Boss to say stay at home. The snow is still dumping and 30 mins goes by before the phone call to say the game is ON!!! …….. well I’m absolutely flabbergasted ……. I can’t believe the insanity of this…….. dressed, ……outside clearing 9″off the windows,  hood, windscreen, when Brenda shouts “2 HOUR DELAY”………. back to my coffee and now wait out the time.

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Still snowing HARD!!

Later back outside and still snowing! Remove the most recent 2-3″ and set off out of the drive onto the snow packed roads. Braking action non existent so this is going to be slow …… very slow, and of course I’m not exactly in a good frame of mind.

Up the hill and approaching the Dolores Bus Barn two 18 wheeler cattle trucks on the hard shoulder where one has jackknifed himself into the soft deep snow on the verge!

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Great start to someone’s morning

Now creeping into Cortez in the early morning gloom at 30 mph and of course Joe Harvey Dumbshit is now tailgating me in these awful adverse conditions…… but wait, ….. there’s more, as two international world rally drivers come past me at twice my speed as if there is no problem at all!!!

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Just approaching Main St when my phone goes off to tell me it’s been declared a Snow Day……. but Joe Harvey is still tight on my rear end so I’m forced to turn into the Maverick gas station so he doesn’t ram me! What a morning!!!!

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It snows for the rest of the day!!!

TONY DOWN