Archive for April, 2013

Ride Life Ride Giant Demo @ Six Mile Run State Park … Thank You …

Monday, April 29th, 2013

A big thank you to everybody who turned up for the Giant bike demo this last Sunday.

And thanks also to Jordan and Levi from Giant who brought the roadshow to us.

Another busy day at the Giant bike demo

Another busy day at the Giant bike demo

Bridges and trails for all

Bridges and trails for all

Sorry to those who had to wait to ride the bike of their choice – there was a huge demand – and sorry too to those walkers/hikers who didn’t realize that the fact there are any paths at all to walk on in the Six Mile Run park is because cyclists/mountainbikers have labored and sweated to blaze paths and build bridges so everybody can enjoy this wonderful facility.

Perhaps after the next storm we’ll see hiker groups and dog-walkers putting on their hard-hats and winding up their chainsaws at six in the morning to clear paths and make the park safe.

Anyway, off my soap-box; demos hosted by Halter’s to be announced; Cannondale bikes, Giant/Liv women’s bikes and Giant cyclo-cross bikes in the fall.


If you’re seeking information on other topics click on any item in Halter’s Tag Cloud in the right hand column of this blog …


Alan That British Bloke


Five Boro Bike Tour Backpack Ban

Monday, April 29th, 2013

News that the upcoming Five Boro Bike Tour has banned backpacks and hydration packs means that many participants will need to rethink their ability to carry water bottles and other necessities.

http://www.bikenewyork.org/security/

http://www.bikenewyork.org/security/

The TwoFish Quick Cage

The TwoFish Quick Cage

Most bikes have the capacity to carry up to two water bottles in cages. But some bikes, either because they are very small or some full-suspension machines, don’t have any such facility.

There are a number of options if you have this problem.

The TwoFish Quick Cage. This item just velcros onto the frame of your bicycle and holds a water-bottle securely and openly and will satisfy the Tour’s requirements.

If you’re looking for a more elegant solution the Giant Trinity Saddle Water Bottle Cage Mount will fit on the back of most seats and enable two regular bottle cages to be fitted behind the rider.

The Giant Trinity Saddle Water Bottle Cage Mount

The Giant Trinity Saddle Water Bottle Cage Mount

In almost any case it’s possible to zip-tie a bottle-cage onto virtually any bike for a temporary solution and we also have adaptors to mount a bottle-cage onto your handlebars.

Halter’s has a huge stock of cages, adaptors, regular and insulated water-bottles and seat-packs and will help you fit them to your bike if required.

Don”t forget, we also have drink supplements, gel-packs, bars and other nutritional items to help you through your day.

Enjoy your day. Good luck!!!


STOP PRESS : People have been asking if it’s okay to carry a handlebar bag. The answer is yes, but must comply to size constrictions.

From the event website:

How big can a fanny pack/handlebar/underseat bag be?
The bag can be up to 420 cubic inches — to calculate cubic inches, multiply the three sides. So a 7?x4?x10? bag is fine (280 cubic inches) but a 7?x7?x10? bag is not (490 cubic inches).


If you’re seeking information on other topics click on any item in Halter’s Tag Cloud in the right hand column of this blog …


Alan That British Bloke


Ride Life Ride Giant Demo @ Six Mile Run State Park – 4.28.2013 : Part 2

Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

Just a reminder – Halter’s/Giant’s second great bike demo this Sunday …

Now's your chance to try a Giant bike - something for everyone ...

Now’s your chance to try a Giant bike – something for everyone …

Ride Life Ride Giant Demo @ Six Mile Run State Park

Six Mile Run State Park – 2298 Lincoln Hwy, North Brunswick, NJ 08902

9:00am-2:00pm

Road and mountain bikes will be available at this Demo

The Demo will take place at Six Mile Run State Park, NOT at the bike shop.

Halter’s Cycles 4095 US 1 #38, South Brunswick, NJ, 08852

732-329-9022

Keep up with the latest details on FaceBook.


If you’re seeking information on other topics click on any item in Halter’s Tag Cloud in the right hand column of this blog …


Alan That British Bloke


Knog Rear LED Lights

Monday, April 22nd, 2013
Knog Blinder4 LED rear light

Knog Blinder4 LED rear light

Summer is a coming, but we’re still big exponents of using a rear light even on the sunniest day, let alone during the encroaching evening.

Being seen from the rear is crucial on a bicycle. Of course, it’s good to be seen from the front as well, but you do have the advantage of seeing what’s coming at you.

Even on the brightest day a bright red light flashing towards the rear will enhance your security. Imagine a sunny day as your country lane dives under the trees and an SUV driver, complete with dark, dark shades just seeing a pool of dark under the branches as they close in behind you at 50mph … that red strobe in the darkness can only help.

Lighting technology is developing by leaps and bounds and none more-so than in the field of rear lights. A good front light is still going to cost you more than $100, but an effective, rechargeable rear light is going to cost you less than $50.

Remember that these lights can be recharged at least 600 times. Imagine the cost of 600 sets of DuraCells …

Knog Blinder4V

Knog Blinder4V

Most of us at the bike shop have taken to the Knog range of Blinder lights.

All are rechargeable via a USB slot on your computer or USB phone charger and give several hours on flash.

They are available in a number of configurations, the Blinder4, the Blinder4V and the minimalist Blinder1.

All three fit, with what amounts to a sophisticated elastic band, onto the seat post of your bike. They can also fit elsewhere on the bike or on a helmet in most cases.

The Blinder4 is best if you don’t have a lot of seat-post showing and the Blinder4V if you have more room.

Knog Blinder1 - a good thing in a small package

Knog Blinder1 – a good thing in a small package

The Blinder1 is smaller and is just right if you are looking for an effective light-weight rear light.


If you’re seeking information on other topics click on any item in Halter’s Tag Cloud in the right hand column of this blog …


Alan That British Bloke


Changing Gears

Monday, April 15th, 2013

Most modern bicycles use variations of a design called the dérailleur; literally, the de-railer, a device which forces the chain from one cog to the next in a very unsophisticated and crude manner. In engineering terms, it really shouldn’t work … but it does.

No gears for these guys ...

No gears for these guys …

Modern dérailleurs use all manner of tooth profiles, chain design and indexing devices to enable this to happen as smoothly as possible.

But, just as changing gear on a manual gearbox car needs finesse and an understanding of the principles involved, compared to say, an automatic gearbox, changing gear using dérailleurs on a bicycle also requires a degree of involvement from the rider, more than just pushing the button and crunching on regardless.

Some modern bikes have up to 30 possible gear combinations – 3 at the front X 10 at the rear – but not all permutations are useful either because some combinations of front and rear cogs produce gear ratios which are very close to another or even identical, or are mechanically compromised. More about that later …

Modern compact, wide range 2x10 speed derailleurs

Modern compact, wide range 2×10 speed derailleurs

Changing Gear: The principle of the dérailleur depends on the chain moving forward through the gear change, so when changing gear, continue to pedal forward.

However, it’s really helpful to the change if pressure is taken off the pedals so that for the duration of the procedure the feet just spin until you sense the gear has engaged and take up the effort again.

Dérailleurs - rear & front

Dérailleurs – rear & front

There are occasions when this isn’t possible, but just assessing your gear needs ahead of the point where you have to change facilitates a smoother procedure. This particularly applies when you’re changing down to a lower gear, for example, on a hill, or changing to an easier gear just before coming to a halt.

The front dérailleur usually needs the most practise to use efficiently because the chain has to make such a large jump from one chainring to the next.

People often ask, “How do I know what gear I’m in?” or “How do I know if I’m in the right gear?”

The thing is, you don’t really need to know as long as you feel comfortable and can maintain a good pedal cadence and the drive runs smooth and sounds quiet. But there are some gear combinations to avoid.

Avoid running the gears at extremes - chain-wrap and chain-stretch mean noisy, poorly functioning gears

Avoid running the gears at extremes – chain-wrap and chain-stretch mean noisy, poorly functioning gears

Cross-Chaining: The diagram shows the top view of a typical set up. I’ve indicated the chain line from the extremes of the chainwheel to the cassette.

Although exaggerated, it demonstrates the degree of deformation the chain has to cope with in those gears. This tends to cause the chain to track badly, run noisily and the dérailleur mechanisms to have to contend with excessive chain wrap, extension and tension.

Each chain-wheel serves an optimum range of sprockets - modern double chain-sets minimize this problem

Each chain-wheel serves an optimum range of sprockets – modern double chain-sets minimize this problem

In practice, try to restrict your gear choices as in this diagram; large chainwheel to outer range of sprockets, small chainwheel to inner sprockets.

Modern gear indexing systems control the movement of the dérailleurs, often to a tolerance of 0.1mm, less than 1/100th inch. One of the prime reasons for gears to go out of adjustment is cable stretch, particularly with new cables, so if you’ve recently bought a new bike, or installed a new cable, return to your LBS to have the adjustment done if you can’t do it yourself.

stuff

The dérailleur hanger is made to deform or even break to save further damage to the bike’s frame in case of accident or mechanical problem

Another frequent cause of poor shifting can be a bent dérailleur hanger, the component which connects the rear mechanism to the frame.

If your hanger is bent you will need to visit your LBS where they will have an alignment device which can check and adjust the hanger. The hanger will need to be adjusted in three planes so it’s not really a job you can do at home.

But adjustment can also be affected by using excessive force, either through the gear changer or through the pedals while changing gear causing elements of the drive to distort or just go out of line, so learn to coordinate your changing/pedaling skills as outlined above.

A well adjusted gear mechanism will produce easy and smooth changes. However, it does need some input in terms of timing, sensitivity and skill from you, the rider.


If you’re seeking information on other topics click on any item in Halter’s Tag Cloud in the right hand column of this blog …


Alan That British Bloke


Ride Life Ride Giant Demo @ Six Mile Run State Park – 4.28.2013

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013
Time to try a Giant ...

Time to try a Giant …

Ride Life Ride Giant Demo @ Six Mile Run State Park

Six Mile Run State Park – 2298 Lincoln Hwy, North Brunswick, NJ 08902

9:00am-2:00pm

Road and mountain bikes will be available at this Demo

The Demo will take place at Six Mile Run State Park, NOT at the bike shop.

Halter’s Cycles 4095 US 1 #38, South Brunswick, NJ, 08852

732-329-9022


If you’re seeking information on other topics click on any item in Halter’s Tag Cloud in the right hand column of this blog …


 
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