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Braff Zacklin

The Surly Mountain Biking Thread

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1 hour ago, TwiceHorn said:

Also, oddball thing.  On a fair number of rides, on different trails, I encounter a kind of musty home smell.  Not unpleasant, but smells like your grandmother's house, kinda.  It's not something you expect to encounter outdoors on a trail.  I think it might be the smell of other riders or trail users' clothes.  Maybe piles of decomposing leaves/plant matter have a similar smell, I don't know.

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2 hours ago, TwiceHorn said:

Nearly perfect ride today.  Sixties, clear, hero dirt everywhere.

Yes, I had the same experience today.  Got out for my first decent ride in a couple of weeks and went to Pedernales Falls.  With the rain we got this past week it was absolute hero dirt out there.  Hero weather too.  Supposed to be continued nice weather this week and I have vacation days I need to burn by the end of the yea,r so I think I'll take a day or 2 and ride.  

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2 hours ago, TwiceHorn said:

Nearly perfect ride today.  Sixties, clear, hero dirt everywhere.

dp

Edited by KuЯdt

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Broke a rear drive side spoke today.  The head fell off.  Pretty sure I caught it right after it happened.  Wheel appeared to be still pretty true, but I took it to a shop to have em replace the spoke and look it over.  

There was a time, in the days of Schwinn steel rims, that I monkeyed with spokes fearlessly.  I no longer do so.

Hope I'm not in for a string of busted spokes and a new wheel or rebuilt one.

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2 hours ago, TwiceHorn said:

Hope I'm not in for a string of busted spokes and a new wheel or rebuilt one.

Should be good unless you're using an ammonia-based sealant combined with aluminum nipples.

Ammonia's been removed from most brands that I'm aware of. Stan's used to have it, and a local shop that repaired a broken spoke cut corners with the tape job (lifted old tape up, replaced broken nipple, and slapped tape back down instead of taking a couple of extra minutes to retape the wheel), which led to a poor seal and many more broken spokes. They'd snap simply from the torque of acceleration.

I don't use that shop anymore.

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There have been a lot of sticks on the trails lately, along with the leaves.  I might bet that I tweaked that spoke with a stick and it gave today.

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12 minutes ago, Braff Zacklin said:

Should be good unless you're using an ammonia-based sealant combined with aluminum nipples.

Ammonia's been removed from most brands that I'm aware of. Stan's used to have it, and a local shop that repaired a broken spoke cut corners with the tape job (lifted old tape up, replaced broken nipple, and slapped tape back down instead of taking a couple of extra minutes to retape the wheel), which led to a poor seal and many more broken spokes. They'd snap simply from the torque of acceleration.

I don't use that shop anymore.

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I switched to brass nipples after my second Al one broke.  didn't even know I had Al nipples on the (OEM) rim until I got the first one fixed.  this was before I went tubeless.  I'll never understand weight weenies, at least.

2x, if I'm reading you right, you should be able to replace the spoke without even popping the tire bead.  just gotta clamp that nipple so it doesn't slip into the rim when you unscrew it from the spoke.  agree with Braff, the wheel should be fine, short a spoke.  just twist it around a neighbor and ride until you can get a replacement, (which is probably a trip to the LBS anyway, unless you have extras around).

if you decide to replace it yourself, don't use blue loctite.  use the pink, or use real spoke prep (LBS can dip spokes for you, which is what I do when I'm fixin to build one, since it goes bad in the jar much faster than my wheel build frequency).

so...enjoy your trip to the bike shop.

 

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There's a store I go to (dallasbikeworks) that has a 50-60 year old dude running the shop, in addition to the 20 something slackers.  I trust them pretty well, especially with wheels.

They fixed it this afternoon, I'll pick it up in the morning.  Their fees are always reasonable.  

I don't remember what it was exactly that I hit, something minor, like a root or rock that I caught with the rear wheel and it popped up pretty hard and smacked me good in the ass.  When I got into smooth again, it was making a slight tinking noise so I stopped and the first spoke I grabbed to squeeze was the busted one.  Since it broke at the head it wasn't really flying around, so I rode slowly back to the trailhead.

Two things made me think maybe I had a damaged rim.  Once, on the same trail, I burped the rear tire so it went flat almost immediately and I was bopping down some limestone when it happened, but I think the tire protected for the 50 yards or so I rode on it.  I wound up changing that tire entirely and didn't eyeball anything wrong with the rim, but sometimes that eludes eyeballs.  And then my grand underpressure experiment.  I don't think I ever hit real hard while doing that, but again you never know.

Anyway, I'm thinking it was a stick.  I had to stop several times pretty quick over the last few rides because of shit in the rear wheel/chain and I didn't want to bust a der or hanger.  Drivetrain survived, but I didn't think of damage to spokes.

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Id kind of like to try building a wheel sometime just to kind of get a feel for it somewhere with a proper truing stand and spoke tension meter.  As it stands, I'm kind of afraid to take a spoke wrench to an aluminum wheel.  I can just see myself getting into a do-loop of truing:  too much, no not enough, rinse, repeat, FUCK!  Probably not that dangerous with one spoke, but still.

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i do most of my own wrenching, but wheel building and anything beyond tightening a couple of loose spokes I leave to the shop.  I know my limits...

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I've heard something similar from other wheelsmiths, dingle--not that difficult, stays true forever. Definitely piques the ol' interest, a la, "Maybe I should consider taking the plunge."

Do you ride those wheels a lot and put them through the wringer?

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In the past yes.    I'm a 200 lb dude and they were on my 29er hardtail, which was later fully rigid.  I never did huge drops or anything though.  There was a difference between those and the stock wheels I had on previous bikes, which maybe once or twice a year I had to true.   Those were the last wheels I built though, the others I sold so I don't know how those held up.  Maybe if you have a pair of used wheels sitting around, take them apart and put them back together just for practice.

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Rode Rowlett Creek yesterday and got a wild hair to do some new loops.  Found what looks like some kind of fun climby/droppy stuff.  BUT, everything was covered with leaves.  Big sycamore and oak leaves so it was hard to see the trail, hard to see things in the trail, and of course slicker than owl shit.

Made me even more tentative than my old, pussy, broken-collarbone fuct up finger ass is normally.  Will have to check out again.

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Spent 2 hours out at Flat Creek Crossing Ranch this morning.  What a glorious day for riding.  Did more of the XC stuff than usual and lots of uphill.  My legs are hating me this afternoon, but goddamn what a great workout.  Finished with some of the downhill runs.

Seemed rockier than usual, but they've also upgraded some of the trails because they had a race out there recently.  Also re-did the entrance road so there aren't 2 feet deep potholes every 10 feet.

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FCCR is awesome.  it's just a hike for me and my usual crew.  hard to scare up enough dudes for the time commitment.  they rarely venture south of Brushy, nowadays.  need to get back out there, for sure.

as it was, I was probably only 30 minutes away from there, today.  old school rocky ups and downs.  my legs are feeling it, too.

I did take the time to restore the tombstone on RIP, though.  my good deed for the day.  been so long, I'd forgotten where I was without it.

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Finally hit Brushy Creek trail today. Just spent most of the time on concrete scoping out the various trails, figuring out which one I will attack later in the week.  I had a question on my bike. It feels like the front disc brakes rub slightly but when I look down at the calipers, I can see daylight on each side, so I'm a bit confused. Anyone have that issue?

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Maybe loosen and resecure your front wheel. If there's and slop there could be difference between when there's weight on the wheel and not.  I'd they are cable actuated maybe lube or even change the cables.  If the cables are sticky they could be slow to retract.  

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6 hours ago, dingleberryswitzer said:

Maybe loosen and resecure your front wheel. If there's and slop there could be difference between when there's weight on the wheel and not.  I'd they are cable actuated maybe lube or even change the cables.  If the cables are sticky they could be slow to retract.  

Yeah, I forget if db's bike has quick-release hubs, but if so, you can fiddle with the nut on the end and have it tighter or looser and pay attention to have the axle/end caps roughly centered before you tighten it.  If it's too loose or off-center (it should be sort of self-centering, but experience shows it's not exactly), you can get some sporadic rub.

Couple of nice cool weather rides this week.  Good conditions except for all the leaves.

Edited by TwiceHorn

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The last-knuckle droop is probably semi-permanent,  The second-knuckle just needs to loosen up from being splinted for four months.

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Bummed! Went to my brother’s for Thanksgiving planning to ride Northwoods but it rained the whole time. His house is about 5 minutes from there. We used to ride there before it was legal and it looks like they have done an awesome job with the trails.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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Both my ER trips were at BC. Going down Hill of Life the front wheel stuck and I flew like Superman. Landed groin first on a pointed rock. Had some really interesting colors for a week (no pics).

Edited by AUinHsv

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5 hours ago, wd40 said:

bcgb today.  quick non-edit.  five minutes of heavy breathing

 

Nice, dude.  I've never made it all the way up dab-free.  Best I've done is gotten up to the left turn with the big ass ledges, which looks like about the same spot you got up to.  Of course I did it years ago when I was in much better shape.  Could not do that now.  In fact I haven't ridden that main trail in a long time...these days I take one of the singletrack options off to the left.

But you've inspired me.  I'm off work tomorrow so going to hit up BCGB.

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Thanks, man.

well, here's some more inspiration (or 11 minutes you'll never get back).  the rest of today's footage.  

I really didn't know what I wanted to do with it, and I already burned the song I heard today that stuck in my head, so I ended up going with your comment about bcgb being the quintessential Austin trail.  

it's in sequence from where I started, to where I ended up before I got sorta lost trying to find Pump Station.  I let it run after the music to help remind me where to turn (during dry conditions).

btw, my HOL record isn't much better.  been years for me, as well.  usually take Taint, because I can never seem to find Hobo Hut on my own.  HOL proper has really gotten eroded and widened, since I last saw it.  I'd planned to take Dumptruck anyway, but if I'd made that crux, I'd have tried to go for the top.  I was about done anyway, spinout or no, so no complaints.

hero dirt today helped.

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Do you have to manual/wheelie to get up that stuff or just "unweight" the front wheel with a little weight shift?

I climb some rooty stuff that's probably about like that, but I kind of shut down when I see bigger ledges or stairsteps.

Pretty much in your last couple of cogs, I might assume?  Got a 50 out back?

When I do sustained climbs, I tend to downshift until I'm not mashing.  Should I consider going lower just to save some heartrate/fatigue?

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2x, all of the above, on technique.  it's a judgement call based on current speed, energy level and the obstacle.  the set up on my bike keps the front end pretty light, so wheelie-ing up is little different than just unweighting, in terms of effort.  just gotta pick a spot where I can get the front up on the ledge where it has room to roll before the next significant bump, and where I have clean traction in the back.  

watching the video again, I have little memory of what I was doing after that move at 1:25.  had to get the front tire over a boulder, and roll it along the top of a knife- edge rock to bridge up to the next boulder up before the two old ladies came down.

I generally try to go Earl up the Middle, because it's so easy to get snagged on stupid shit going around stuff at the edges.  but traffic and my energy level often dictated going wide.  there's also a lot of scree in the middle that forced me outside.

no 50T.  I'm just that slow.  30 up front, 42 in the back for my granny.  pretty sure I was in it almost the whole time.  definitely don't like to do a lot of shifting on that stuff.  tend to squirt rocks and spin out.

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That was awesome!  I made it up once 20ish years ago on a 26" hardtail.  These days I don't even get up the first real ledges on the lower section.  Video doesn't quite convey how hard it is getting up those ledges when you're already on a steep incline to begin with.  I've got about 3 more weeks of no riding to heal a broken elbow, then I'll be back on my flat South Austin trails again.  

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1 hour ago, wd40 said:

2x, all of the above, on technique.  it's a judgement call based on current speed, energy level and the obstacle.  the set up on my bike keps the front end pretty light, so wheelie-ing up is little different than just unweighting, in terms of effort.  just gotta pick a spot where I can get the front up on the ledge where it has room to roll before the next significant bump, and where I have clean traction in the back.  

watching the video again, I have little memory of what I was doing after that move at 1:25.  had to get the front tire over a boulder, and roll it along the top of a knife- edge rock to bridge up to the next boulder up before the two old ladies came down.

I generally try to go Earl up the Middle, because it's so easy to get snagged on stupid shit going around stuff at the edges.  but traffic and my energy level often dictated going wide.  there's also a lot of scree in the middle that forced me outside.

no 50T.  I'm just that slow.  30 up front, 42 in the back for my granny.  pretty sure I was in it almost the whole time.  definitely don't like to do a lot of shifting on that stuff.  tend to squirt rocks and spin out.

Ha, was not a comment on the speed.   And yeah, know what you mean on the unweighting thing.  I just have to raise my chest a little to pop over some things.  I'd be afraid to loop out doing much more than that, which is why I don't mess with those ledges much.  There aren't too many around here.

Currently, I'm trying to figure out how to clean this climb that's the upside of a creek crossing.  It has some big roots near the top that just stop me dead. Funny thing is, I can do it by walking to the bottom and climbing it in "rock crawler" mode, but I can't make it work in full-speed mode.  I guess I can gauge the momentum and the unweighting better at slow speed than fast..

Impressive cassette.  I'm not sure I use my granny enough.  Going back to my Schwinn days, the "right gear" seems to be just under mashing.  I have kind of broken myself of that on flats, but I should experiment with more downshifting on climbs, I think.

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