Opinions

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The abbreviated guide to bicycle dynamics

marketing departments tell people how bikes work, meaning there has been an ever growing tide of misinformation about how and why bikes do what they do

Knog Blinder

I hate bike lights. Don’t get me wrong, they serve their purpose; they’re just such ugly things that stick out, stand proud, have mounts that look crap if you leave them on the bike or are fiddly to put on and take off if you don’t leave them on the bike. It’s exactly why I’m…

Brake Pad Toe-In

Perhaps a slightly random subject to focus on, but it’s one I’ve been asked about a lot – or rather, as much as anything is one which is answered with a blank expression when mentioned. What’s brake pad ‘toe-in’? It’s when the front of the brake pad touches the wheel rim before the rear. Why…

Wrapping bar tape – a guide

There are heaps of videos on YouTube about wrapping bar tape, but I thought I’d add my tuppence with this photo sequence of how I wrap mine – including doing the ‘figure of eight’ wrap (I can’t actually remember how to wrap without doing that anymore!). So, here goes… Firstly, my method involves wrapping the…

Wheel of Wonder

I recently happened across the opportunity to buy some of the cycling industry’s very best components – Chris King hubs – at a price that could not be ignored. But what format to get, and what do with them? Should I buy 24-hole road and build them into something bling and carbon, something more practical…

Chain Cleaning & Lubing

Sticking with the recent theme on cleaning (and leap-frogging the planned article on polishing due to bad planning on my part), this week I’m going to focus on cleaning and lubing your chain. How often you clean your chain really depends on how much and how regularly you ride, and what kind of riding you…

Pedal Kinesiology – Some Thoughts

For years as cyclists we’ve been constantly badgered about how smooth our pedal stroke should be, about how we should ‘pedal in circles’ and pull up through the pedal stroke as well as push down. But should we really? Where’s the proof?

Brakes As Objets d’Art

When it comes to road bikes I developed a slightly unhealthy obsession with brakes pretty much from the start.  But I don’t mean from a ‘weight weenie’ perspective you understand – it was simply as an interesting component that’s nice to look at.  Objet d’art for my bike, if you will. It started with my…

Little Dudes Need Not Apply…

I’ve been sent something today which has given me real food for thought.

EE Vs M5 – Long Term Brake Test

And so the Bike Tart’s posh brake fetish continues… Now that the EE Brakes have been on the Cannondale for a couple of months I thought it would be a good time for a longer term review. Like the Reynolds wheel review it seemed like a good idea to use my experience of them to…

Bike Fitting

Kind of an ‘Ask The Bike Tart’ and a Tuesday Tune-Up all rolled into one this week (and delayed a week due to the migraine that knocked me flat last week!). An important subject too: Bike fitting. Luis asked me this: “You’ve mentioned several times the importance of proper bike fit. Do you have any…

Headset Adjustment

It’s the bane of any sensitive cyclist, and often the first thing to go wrong on a poorly maintained bike – get your headset adjustment wrong or don’t keep an eye on it and you could be looking at an expensive repair bill, or worse, a written off frame. So what’s the secret? In short,…

Edging Towards Real BB Standard?

Earlier in 2011 FSA announced their new ‘BB386 Evo’ bottom bracket standard. To put it simply, it’s PressFit30 in an 86mm BB shell

Review: Audio-Technica ATH-M50

I wanted headphones that I could play on my iPod, were of a closed type so that I didn’t have outside noise interfering with my music.

FYHMT

‘hardmen’ of cycling, when bikes were made of pipe, gear selection was hard or harder and the concept of a sports drink was having a beer on the fly.

Fold that tub!

How to fold a tub

‘One Day’ roads

I’ll ride them though, “one day”…

Can’t Help But Be Intrigued…

…about how road bikes and hydraulic systems will develop through 2012. There’s been lots of banding about of the word ‘hydraulic’ in road circles of late – something which I flatly refused to believe would happen, right up until the mention of the possibility that SRAM’s new Red group might feature hydraulic shifting. It doesn’t…

The Harsh Reality of ‘Euro’

You hear the term ‘Euro’ all over the place in the road world.

Roast Pumpkin, Feta and Pasta Salad

It all started after the Highland Fling a couple of years back. We were given a little ticket that would entitle you to a post-race meal in the goodie bag..

An Indexing Trick

I wasn’t going to do anything on gear indexing because it’s a subject that’s frankly covered perfectly well over on Park Tool. However, I do have one neat little trick that I use when cabling up a rear derailleur, and that might prove useful to some of you… So, start as you should when setting…

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