Archive for the ‘Road’ Category

Winter Draws On – but keep on riding …

Monday, November 10th, 2014

As the last leaves are falling off the trees thoughts turn to the winter. Yes, it’s possible to cycle through the winter, but you need to be prepared …

Prepare Your Bike : Riding cold salty pot-holed roads takes a huge toll on your bike. Salt etches away at frames, paint jobs and metal finishes, and grit and grime gets into bearings and friction surfaces accelerating wear and shifting mechanics out of adjustment. So if you have the choice don’t use your pride and joy.

Rather, pick a bike you can adapt without worrying ruining its expensive good looks. More than ever, ensure your choice is well-maintained and tuned up.

Nothing is as miserable as a preventable mechanical holding you up just as the street lights turn on and the sleet moves in. And of course, carry a small tool- and flat kit just in case.

The ultimate in winter tires, but won't fit all frames ...

The ultimate in winter tires, but won’t fit all frames …

Tires : In the winter flints, glass and rough roads subject tires to the limit. If you’re riding regularly throughout the season consider running heavier duty and wider tires on your road bike. Most road bikes will take 25mm wide tires and many will run 28mm wide tires.

Consider something like Continental 4-Seasons if you’re looking for toughness and performance. Continental GatorSkins provide great flat protection at a lower price and if you’re looking for the ultimate in winter protection look at the Schwalbe Marathons. If you’re regularly riding on ice and snow look at getting studded tires for greater control and security.

Fenders keep water off your back and muck off your bike - these are clip-on fenders

Fenders keep water off your back and muck off your bike – these are clip-on fenders

Fenders : Nothing says winter riding like the black streak up your back which accumulates after almost any ride. Fenders or mudguards not only protect you from the spray which splatters up your bike, but also helps protect the rest of the bike from excessive exposure to the elements and dirt.

Some bikes have fittings for fenders, but it’s possible to fit fenders to almost any regular road bike or hybrid.

Clip-on types are also available if you want the option of removing the fenders on fine weather days.

Stay Warm : Of course, you need to stay warm. As well as wearing winter-specific jackets and tights look after your extremities. Winter cycling shoes are, of course, ideal, but start with Merino wool socks. Wool can carry its own weight in water before it even feels damp and provides better insulation than most synthetics.

Insulated and water-proof shoe covers will help keep most feet warm. Use toe-covers if you’re looking for something you can stick in your back pocket as the day, hopefully, warms up.

Also, check your shoes for cooling vents. Some have the ability to be shut. Otherwise seal them up with some duct-tape or similar.

Lastly, resist the temptation to make your feet too snug. Leave enough room for circulation to help keep your feet warm.

Hands, of course, also need protection from the cold and wet. Choose a full finger, insulated glove, preferably with a high-tech synthetic barrier such as WindStopper or similar. Some people find their hands fare better in a mitten or lobster-claw variation. I find silk glove liners really help.

Heads are usually covered by a helmet, but features which make for a great summer helmet, like cooling vents, may prove too chilly for the winter. Look for a thin cap made from WindStopper or other synthetic which will help prevent heat loss through the top of your head and cover your ears. You might want to consider a face-mask or balaclava in really nasty conditions.

Get Lit Up : Never has effective bike lighting been so good and so available. Virtually all lights now use very bright and efficient LEDs, and many are re-chargeable. Re-chargeable lights cost more, but most are capable of, at least, 600 charging cycles. When looking at a regular battery light remember to factor in the cost of 600 sets of DuraCells into the true cost. A bright rear light is absolutely essential with most having a selection of steady and pulsing modes. Rear lights output from about 10 lumens of red light up to about 50 lumens.

Front lights fall into two types; conspicuity lights and headlights. Conspicuity lights feature a very bright, wide field beam which only minimally lights up the road, but ensures you will be seen – about 50 lumens to 100 lumens.

Headlight focussed beam lights tend to be more expensive, but really light up the road or trail, depending on their power – from about 300 lumens to 2500 lumens. Around 700-1000 lumens will be plenty for most road riders and commuters. The more powerful lights are for off-road use, although the extra power can be useful on the road too.

Visit Halter’s for :
Clothing by : Gore, Pearl Izumi, Castelli and other fine makes
Lights by : Blackburn, Cateye, Light & Motion and Knog
And, of course, we’ll tune-up and prepare your bike too …

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

Cannondale Demo Day @ 6MR

Wednesday, September 4th, 2013

Sunday, 22 September 2013, 9:00am until 2:00pm

Six Mile Run, Franklin Township, NJ.

Map here …

MTB and Road …

Rain CANCELS this event! Watch the weather.

Bring your own Pedals, Helmet, Water and a way to change a flat.

Valid ID please.

Cannondale Demo Day @ 6MR

Cannondale Demo Day @ 6MR

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 | OldCranksCC Forum

Shimano SPD-SL PD-R550 Pedal

Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013

The latest 2014 Shimano equipment is starting to come into the shop.

If you’re looking for a road pedal then the PD-R550 might just do.

The Shimano PD-R550 road pedal

The Shimano PD-R550 road pedal

  • with lightweight carbon filled composite body
  • extra-large cleat target for easier engagement
  • extra-wide platform for maximum efficient transfer of power
  • Durable stainless steel body plate reduces flex and pedal body wear
  • Wide bearing placement for stable, uniform load distribution

The release tension can also be adjusted to enable the pedals to disengage at a very light pressure, important if you have mobility issues or just want to feel you can get your feet on the ground with the easiest motion.

A carbon enhanced road pedal for only $99.99

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 | OldCranksCC Forum

Find a Friend …

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

Looking for rides, ride companions and routes in central Jersey? Or just want to talk bikes? Try these local cycling websites. - off-road – off-road

If you’re into information, discussion, news and opinion about mountain biking in the local area then look no further than - off-road – off-road

This long established site for mountain-bikers in NJ has sections for everyone from newbies looking for trail advice and trail conditions to discussions on beer. Alan, that British Bloke, has reservations about whether Americans can actually discuss beer, however, if you have an issue with that see him. - on road – on road - on road – on road

Until now, roadies have not really had a local forum. But now, look no further than

Whether you’re new to road-riding on the road and looking for someone to guide you through the practice of clipless pedals, need a buddy to initiate you to the jungle that is the NJ road system, just fancy a chat about who will win the Tour, or are seeking a partner for your trans-Siberia tour, take a look.

Both forums require a registration process before you can contribute.


As far as I know is free of commercial interest. has been set up by yours truly and is in the course of development according to the direction members would like to take.

So why not take a look?

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

Cannondale Demo @ Six Mile Run State Park – 5.26.2013

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2013


Rain Date to be determined. Watch this space.

Halter’s is hosting a Cannondale demo day this Sunday the 26th at Six Mile Run State Park. 9.00am-2.00pm.

Now’s the chance to ride your dream Cannondale, road or mountain-bike.

Bring your shoes and helmet.

Please park your car considerately.

Last rides from 1.00pm.

Date: 5.26.2013 : 9.00am-2.00pm

GPS address:

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

Halter’s Cycles
4095 Route 1
Monmouth Junction
NJ 08852 USA

phone: +1 732 329 9022

You need Wheels

Friday, May 17th, 2013

The bicycle wheel has been one of the lightest and strongest structures in design and engineering for over a century. So it’s good to know, while bowling along on your bicycle, what experience and know-how has gone into this apparently simple device.

One of the strongest structures in engineering design

One of the strongest structures in engineering design

Your local bike shop will sell bikes with wheel sizes from 12″/300mm to 29″/700C depending on use. Children’s bikes sizes are defined by the size of the wheels. Adult bikes, whether extra-large or extra-small are limited to two or three standard sizes of wheels. It’s the frame size which makes the difference.

If you’re buying a new bike, is wheel size a consideration? Here’s a run down on wheel sizes and their applications:

12″ : Used on the smallest children’s bicycles and balance bikes.

Tire, Rim, Spokes and Hub

Tire, Rim, Spokes and Hub

16″ : Intermediate children’s bicycles bridging the gap between bicycles with training-wheels and free-riders.

20″ : For free-riding youngsters, although training-wheels can be fitted so some models. This wheel size is also used on some adult folding bicycles.

24″ : The largest wheel for children’s bicycles. Most 24″ wheels conform to a mountain bike type, that is, tires about 2″/50mm wide. Some very small adult cycles also use this wheel size.

26″ : The smallest true adult wheel size and originally developed for the first manufactured mountain bikes around 40 years ago. As well as mountain bikes this wheel can be found on some hybrid bicycles and cruisers. Most 26″ wheels are made for a tire width of around 2″/50mm+. If you want to adapt your old mountain bike for on-road/commuting use you can fit a slick tire less than 1.5″/35mm wide for less rolling resistance on the road.

The 26″ wheel has variations so that an old Schwinn 26″ wheel is a different size which can make for problems with replacement tires.

650 : Sometimes known as 27.5″ and originally a wheel designed for French utility and touring bicycles, there are 650A, -B and -C variations which have different rim diameters. This wheel – 650B – is at the forefront of a new generation of mountain bikes, bridging the gap between 26″ wheels and 29″ wheels. Expect to see bikes with this size wheel in the next year.

27″ : A once universal, but now obsolete wheel size, usually only found on classic ten-speeds and English three-speeds. A limited range of tires are still available.

Top quality wheels are the most effective upgrade you can make to your quality road or mountain bike

Top quality wheels are the most effective upgrade you can make to your quality road or mountain bike

700C : A virtually universal standard for lightweight road bikes, this wheel is also used by hybrids designed for predominately road use. These wheels have the least rolling resistance of any bicycle wheel.

29″ : A comparatively recent standard for mountain bike wheels, the rims were developed from 700C road wheels. This size wheel offers superior rolling ability over rough terrain.

Smaller riders may need to look at 26″ wheel mountain bikes for a good fit, although the introduction of the 650B will widen that choice.

There are one or two wheel sizes which are not standard. These include 14″ and 18″ wheels. These are found on big box store toy bicycles. Customers are often shocked by the price of wheels we supply to replace bent and broken children’s bike wheels, often because a properly manufactured and safe, quality wheel will cost more than the original toy bike.

We will only sell you a product we know will not fail.

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

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