My advice to newbies.

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by andyfromotley, 30 Jun 2008.

  1. 50K

    50K New Member

    (Sorry, this post is in reply to page 1 where fellow users are saying you should go to your local rather than other options, here's my take on it)

    I went to my LBS in the interest of keeping my money locally and trying to stop my high street from shutting down completely (there's quite a few close downs in the last couple of years,still empty).
    Unfortunately for them, I did my time in a small bike / sports shop nearer to central London (as an assistant mechanic) so saw how some people exaggerate damage in order to up the repair bill, the minute he said ''oh noooo, your bottom bracket needs replacing, it's almost gone!'' I knew he was TTP and that was why I will have a hard time ever trusing a Family / Home bike shop because it happens all too often. So basically, he wanted to do £250 repairs on a £320 hybrid that was a little over a year old - I am a commuter and do perhaps 240-250 kms per week so yes, it needed some real repairs and I fully understand that as a business, he will be charging me a markup on the parts, but to lie outright like that thinking I was just another clueless commuter. The dead giveaway was he didnt even spin the crank before claiming the bracket was almost gone. So people like these individuals, claiming 25 years in the business, who are willing to risk their reputation by mosdescribing the damage deserve bad credit and exposing in my opinion. A good bike shop will have both normal cyclists who dont do any DIY and cycle fanatics who love stripping their bikes both saying that the service is great.

    My only experience with Evans is purchasing and going in for the 6 weekly free service, as well as having something replaced under warranty which was a bad experience, they replaced a decent tyre with some glossy fong kong thing I could have bought on ebay for £8 and I was pretty much accused of overpumping the tyres which caused a blow out.

    I went into Cycle Surgery once and unfortunately they didn't sell the part I needed, but the general service and advice I received was excellent and I now wish I had one nearby.

    In conclusion, I am now a youtube / ebay DIY repairer which is good that I am learning new skills but sad for my local economy as I'm not too keen that some of my money goes to US big business ...

    PS: this is my first post, not intended to be a rant, cheers
    Profpointy and Alan O like this.
  2. 50K

    50K New Member

    Order tyreliners online, one set should do fine, I initially ordered 2 sets but what happens is that they slide inside the tyre and end up slicing the sides of the innter tube, I also slice a line down the inside of an old inner tube and use this as a barrier between the tyre and the liner (which sits normally between the tube and tyre). This makes my tyres almost inpenetrable (I'm using low end kevlar guard tyres on a commuter hybrid), the only things which penetrate are serious shards of glass and sometimes pyracantha thorns / hawthorns. I get less than one puncure a month and I commute about the same as what you are planning.

    Try hit the canals if you can for your commute to get away from the loonies!! trust me, this is essential if you can. DONT CYCLE THE CANAL IF YOU REFUSE TO USE YOUR BELL! <friendly warning :smile:

    A proper lock! even if you think its alright you can store your bike somewhere at work etc. remember they WILL NOT let you on with a non folding bike on the tube or any other rail inside peak hours no matter what your physical condition is (TFL / LU are now a careless corporation that has zero compassion, it's rare to be able to find a human being who will give you a break at 4:01 pm to let you on with your bike). So may end up needing to lock your bike at a station if you end up with a serious bike issue etc. We used to see a few people come in, spend loads on the bike and accessories then buy a £5 lock (the shop I used to work in bought locks from 99p stores and resold them for £5!) only to come in a week later asking what is the cheapest bike we sold ... you can guess where the other one went.

    Gloves, knee protection and kidney protection if you are going to cycle in the colder months.

    Cycling with waterproofs is horrible, I only do it because I work outdoors and have nowhere to change / store other clothing. get good mudguards and waterproof shoes.

    Decent pannier rack and bag/s (I got all mine online) because you get back pains / neck strain with backpacks over long distances like that.

    Loud bell (people these days cycle / walk / jog with damn earphones in on full blast) not to mention they are zombified by their ''smart'' phones and can hardly walk straight nevermind properly navigate around a city ...

    Pump with gauge, spare tubes, triangle allen key, adjustable spanner, philipps screwdriver etc.

    I think that's it.
  3. Alan O

    Alan O Über Member

    There are rip-off merchants in any trade, but I do think a good LBS is worth a lot (if you can find a good one). At the moment I have a bike in with my local one (Quinns in Liverpool) for a tricky headset fitting, and they've quoted approx £20 - which seems perfectly reasonable to me.
    50K likes this.
  4. Randombiker9

    Randombiker9 Well-Known Member

    Tips to new cyclists. It's only been a few months since I started cycling to college.
    The things I've learnt is always have a working bike make sure you do a quick check before you go out e.g air brakes chain quick release
    Also when out on the road remember these 5 things
    Be confident- if your confident you'll be fine with your bike handing
    Be visible and heard- have lights at dawn dusk and night which is the law. Also reflective chlothing and flurescont is a good idea. If you don't have any of these and just cycle when it's light outside wear bright chlothing and if possible if you wear a helmet try to also get a bright colour
    Be aware
    Be alert
    Be assertive
    Be predictable (always signal and make eye contact when needed)
    Locking tip- if you only have one lock. Put the lock through rear wheel, frame and stand. I see so many people making this mistake just putting there lock through stand and top tube. (If u do this anyone could easily steal your wheels especially if it has quick releases). Also avoid CABLE Locks.
    If drivers or other cyclists are stupid just ignore them. Some cyclists don't know to Not cycle in gutter or away from parked cars.
    Don't cycle in gutter as there's lots of potholes, drains and debris there. Stay away from the door zone of cars. This is to avoid getting hit by driver and passenger doors suddenly open.
    Also if roads are narrow or have too many parked cars don't be afraid to take up the lane as this is allowed.
    Follow road laws. Laws are there for every road users safety
    Also some people might not agree on this last tip but because I live in an area where there loads of buses. That I prefer not to overtake them as if there about to pull out or turning you don't want to get clipped by a bus (same applies to HGV'S) as remember these veichles have more blind spots than other veichles. Plus isn't it just better to wait a minuite and be safer
    Last edited: 26 Sep 2017
  5. Shut Up Legs

    Shut Up Legs Down Under Member

    I hope you don't mind if I make a few comments on what you posted.

    Never ignore motorists. Yes, it's generally a good idea not to let them provoke you, but never ignore them, because if they do something unpredictable and/or stupid, you need to be prepared for it.
    I agree with this. I generally do the same if I think a bus driver is about to leave his stop. I'll stop behind the bus, but not so close I get the full impact of the bus' filthy exhaust fumes, and I'll always stop in primary position, in case some motorist tries to squeeze past me.
  6. Randombiker9

    Randombiker9 Well-Known Member

    When I meant ignore I meant if they say something stupid. Isn't it a driver that has a go at you bassically a bully and like what do you do when you get bullied. Ignore it or tell someone. You don't really confront them as that tends to make it worse. So why would you confront a driver about his actions?. Plus whenever I've ignored people they don't do anything afterwards. Because if you say something back it's bound to escalate as isn't that what road rage is?

    True I don't notice the fumes of the bus near me (But I don't know if that's because sometimes the drivers seem to switch there engine off for one minuite and then back on again.) But if the bus is blocking the view of the other lane to overtake I stay behind and wait because you don't want to cycle into oncoming traffic. and I agree with primary position or if the bus is. about to turn etc..
  7. Andy_R

    Andy_R Hard of hearing..I said Herd of Herring..oh FFS..

    County Durham
    Very good advice, given the following proviso - ride where you can be seen, i.e. not in the gutter. Primary at junctions, through roundabouts, and through pinch points. Secondary when the roads are wide enough to allow safe overtaking. If you can't be seen then no amount of hi-viz and/or lights will matter. Also be aware that strangely enough, hi - viz can blend into the background in busy urban areas.
  8. Rickshaw Phil

    Rickshaw Phil Overconfidentii Vulgaris Staff Member

    Also in the countryside in certain conditions. Yellow flourescent clothing can be quite good camouflage in fog.
    mjr likes this.
  9. Randombiker9

    Randombiker9 Well-Known Member

    Yeah, cyclists shouldn’t ride in gutter as 1. You could get a flat or there’s quite a few hazards e.g potholes etc... in gutters that could cause you to fall off. The only time it’s ok to ride in the gutter is if like a veichle or HGV or bus close overtakes you too closely which pretty much forces you into the gutter. But even then it’s better to get back in your position away from the gutter after the vehicle has overtaken u. Primary through roundabouts is just spossed to prevent drives being idiots e.g close passes, turning infront of u when ur going straight etc... not to mention cars don’t always indicate or are in the wrong lane etc....
    If you think about it pretty much any clothing can blend in to environment. Also not to mention like HGV’s it’s all ways best to cycle in front or wait behind till it’s completed it’s turn at a junction etc..
  10. Beukez

    Beukez Regular

    South Africa
    WOw some good stuff here...
    gilespargiter likes this.
  11. Beukez

    Beukez Regular

    South Africa
  12. RegG

    RegG Senior Member

    One piece of advice for newcomers which can save injury and/or damage....... NEVER ride through puddles, you don't know how big the pothole is under the puddle!
    Rickshaw Phil and Alan O like this.
  13. RegG

    RegG Senior Member

    And another piece of advice following the witnessing of a very silly bit of riding this morning that could easily of ended up with the rider suffering serious injury....... don't ignore red traffic lights! This mornings incident saw a cyclist (all kitted out on a nice looking carbon bike) ride down the outside of a queue of traffic waiting at a red light at roadworks then completely ignore the red light to ride in front of traffic from his right as it moved away on a green light. So stupid!
    Last edited: 25 May 2018 at 09:29
    DCBassman and Alan O like this.
  14. Alan O

    Alan O Über Member

    Yep, so obvious that you'd think it shouldn't need saying, but...
    DCBassman likes this.
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