How much bike do I really need, I have found the limit.

Good morning,

This is a follow on to https://www.cyclechat.net/threads/how-much-bike-do-i-really-need-a-6-month-experiment.284154/

Someone nicked the Norco and it has been replaced by this, bought from a Cash Convertors branch, a chain of Pawn/Second hand shops for £90, typically they go for between.£50 and £90 on ebay around here.

IMG_1742.JPG

It is a Carrera Virtuoso, similar in market position to the current version and really quite old. It is a step down from the Norco in that the gears are Shimano 2000 series with the thumb release for changing up a gear and has a carbon steel fork and steerer.

Weighing 12kg with the rack, which is mounted the wrong way round as it doesn’t fit the correct way round, it is heavy in the way that 501 main frame tubes only or 531st with racks and mudguards is.

In reality it seems to be about 5 minutes slower on the commute, getting slower as the number and steepness of the hills increases. Yes this is a “so what” slower, but if I were riding in a group this may put me into the category of annoyingly slow when the road rises just because of the bike.

For me a big problem is the thumb levers, I can’t operate them from the drops which is a problem as 2 or 3 times a week I come home mostly flat out. I found that as I wanted to keep the weekends for recovery I was losing a lot of fitness just riding at commute speeds. Of course I could resolve this by getting a new set of Claris shifters, but that starts me off the just upgrade this and then that and then route ……. a set of CF forks would be an upgrade, as would lighter wheels and better tyres.

What is much harder to be clear over is that the ride is just not fun, when commuting you have to ride even if you don’t want to and this makes those days horrible.

On the Jamis I can come up to a hill, change down chainrings and spin up it and feel good. Regardless of the gear, being 3kg+ heavier than the Jamis means that I would expect to need the next gear down, the hill is always an obstacle for the Carrera and on the flats it just seem like riding with slightly too soft tyres, every change in speed takes longer.

The Jamis has gained some weight as the RS10s were on the Norco, it currently has wheels that weigh 3.7kg with tyres, tubes and cassette, this is about 0.9kg more than the RS10s! But they are also rock solid with Sora hubs and 36 thick spokes they have probably covered at least 40k miles over the last 9 years.

IF you have ever ridden Vittoria Randonneurs and then you may get what I mean. J

If I had never ridden the Jamis then maybe I wouldn’t know what I was missing and the Carrera certainly can do the journey, but over the week it becomes a chore. Is it because I know what I am missing or is it that the Carrera is outside of its comfort zone?

After all is still 4-6lbs lighter than the 5 speed Raleigh “racer” that many of us have had, and it has a lot more gears. Although for a commute bike I would be very happy with a 1x8 (50-11/32)

As the commute requires riding twice a day this means that you only have 12 hours recovery between rides, this requires either a quite high level of fitness or riding within your comfort zone. I could skip the high intensity rides and budget the exertion but that is a route that I don’t intend to go down.

It is possible to use public transport on the commute route, but the door to door time is greater than riding, on a really good day it can be an hour home by bike compared to the 90-120 minutes by bus/train.

Bye

Ian
 
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All uphill

Rolling along
Location
Somerset
That's very informative Ian. Thanks.
 

Ming the Merciless

There is no mercy
Location
Inside my skull
In reality it seems to be about 5 minutes slower on the commute

Meaningless without context. The 5 mins could represent 10% extra or 50% extra time for the commute. Plus were these commutes in same conditions, same wind speed, same temps, same effort from you, is this elapsed or moving, are there any junctions or traffic lights, is it affected by traffic levels?
 
OP
OP
IanSmithCSE

IanSmithCSE

Veteran
Good afternoon,

@Ming the Merciless although your points are valid you tone is unnecessarily aggressive and insulting, I did not post in response to a question that you raised when you may feel that I owe you something.

I would be interested if you did a really basic site search, say commute bye ian?

Untitled.png
It can become tedious repeating details in multiple post, both for the writer and readers.

The second entry in the seatch results is

Are any CCrs really going to suffer in this heat ?

Good morning, I didn't have too much trouble on the Mon/Tues commute but the rest of the week was the worst riding experience that I have had for years. Normally the commute in is between 70 and 85 minutes on the Carrera, on Friday it was close to 100 and there was a slight tail wind.:sad: It...

Given that this post is part of a long running theme it does seem reasonable to assume that the comparison is over many rides and the same routes.

You have probably noticed that there are relatively few people posting on this site, and you may want to consider that when phrasing your comments, what's the point of putting in the effort to create posts when you get rude responses?

Bye

Ian
 

boydj

Guru
Location
Paisley
Good afternoon,

@Ming the Merciless although your points are valid you tone is unnecessarily aggressive and insulting, I did not post in response to a question that you raised when you may feel that I owe you something.

I would be interested if you did a really basic site search, say commute bye ian?

View attachment 657274
It can become tedious repeating details in multiple post, both for the writer and readers.

The second entry in the seatch results is

Are any CCrs really going to suffer in this heat ?

Good morning, I didn't have too much trouble on the Mon/Tues commute but the rest of the week was the worst riding experience that I have had for years. Normally the commute in is between 70 and 85 minutes on the Carrera, on Friday it was close to 100 and there was a slight tail wind.:sad: It...

Given that this post is part of a long running theme it does seem reasonable to assume that the comparison is over many rides and the same routes.

You have probably noticed that there are relatively few people posting on this site, and you may want to consider that when phrasing your comments, what's the point of putting in the effort to create posts when you get rude responses?

Bye

Ian

Touchy!!!! We don't all read every post, or necessarily remember what we've read. I don't see anything contentious in MtM's post for you to get upset about.
 

ExBrit

Well-Known Member
"For me a big problem is the thumb levers"
Totally agree with you on this. I think I would be tempted to replace them. I don't see this being the thin edge of the wedge, though. When you consider what you'd save using the bike to commute it would be a good investment.
 
OP
OP
IanSmithCSE

IanSmithCSE

Veteran
Good morning,

Yes the rack is on back to front, the rear dropouts have a ridge that prevents it being mounted the correct way round. As it only ever carries a fairly light load the bungee cords stay wrapped around the seat post and this stops any significant for and aft motion as well as keeping the load on the rack.

Having once mounted a rack onto a bike without rack eyes just using cable ties through the bolt holes and the rear drop outs it is surprising how little rigidity a rack requires.

I was tempted to update the levers, but the frame is a bit small for me and it turns out that there is a small section of the front wheel that has worn down to the rim wear level. Possibly a buckle that was rubbing against the brake block.

eBay is pretty much empty of something to use as a commuter and as the novelty (treat with kid gloves) of the Jamis (CF/Di2/no mudguards or rack) has worn off it is now my daily commute. This does mean that I need a rucksack although Tailfin racks are attractive until you realise that you can almost buy a new Carrera for pretty much the same price.

Also as I am one of those people who believe that the life span of a CF frame is unknown, pretty much everything I have read on CF by people in other industries has concerns over age, would a 20 year old frame that has been left in the box be a safe ride? So my plan is to bin the frame in 2029 (15 years old) and I may as well use it until then.

As the commute is clocking up around 9k miles per year it will be well used by then and quite possibly into worn out metal frame range (https://www.cyclechat.net/threads/broken-steel-i-guess-i-was-lucky.273776/)

A plus is that for some reason I am getting over 5k miles per chain, 10 speed, and I read people here changing them in the 800-1,500 mile range. This may be because I tend to use the middle sprockets and change the chain ring a lot, the front change is one of the really nice aspects of Di2.


Bye

Ian
 
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Jameshow

Über Member
Carbon fares just as well as steel and better fatigue life than aluminium imho.
Titanium has its issues too.
 
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