Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Let's see if this works - Damn, and I work in IT.


Okay so I guess it works. Blast from the past indeed. I guess I need to write up a post. The only problem, and this is a problem for "us" also, is that most of what I have to say would alienate me from most of G'ville.

A man could kill from dawn to dusk and still his work would never be done.
-Quote from CSI that I have stolen fair and square-

Monday, September 28, 2009

Cyclocross Diaries

Cross Practice update-

Week one of Cyclocross practice has come and gone and week two is now upon us. The first day of cross practice saw two crossers; your beloved host and one other intrepid soul, as well as one watcher who came just to see what all the ruckus was about (word- bring a bike yo). Hot Hot Hot is the only way to describe it. Friday was day two of the first week of Go Tri Sports Cycling cyclocross practice, this time at the West Side Aquatic Center. Pracitce started with four crossers, a mountain biker and a nice downpour. Ah, good times. The rain did nothing to dampen our spirits and a good time was had by all. A big thanks to all those who came out and decided to brave the heat and rain. Practice is on for both days this week and hopefully the temps will begin to fall again.

The courses could be best described thusly:

Hughes Middle short course - Short punchy climbs, some thick grass, some short but high speed pavement, a short run-up, multiple barriers and little to no rest.

Note: For parking at Hughes on Wed. - Use the first (lower) parking area away from the school.

Westside Long course - Both short and long climbs followed by a brutal run up then a higher speed section, and as always multiple barriers. Half and full course options.

For those of you who are going to Fletcher on Oct. 7th for the last of this season's- Wednesday's Gonna Make You Suffer(fest), this week will be a good chance to get in some last minute practice. Oh, and next Wed.'s practice is canceled but next Friday should be On On!

Cheers- Rob

Bernard Hinault says- "Attack! It’s necessary to attack. There are not 36 solutions, just attack!"

Monday, September 21, 2009


Cold weather is coming and you know what that means - It's time for Cyclocross!

What: Cyclocross - Hup Hup Buttercup! Mountain bikes OK - No bar ends
When\Where: Starting September 21, 2009 Wednesdays -
Short Course - 5:30pm - Hughes Middle School Downtown\Augusta road area
Friday Night Lights - Long Course - 5:30pm - West Side Aquatic Center
Who: Hosted by the Go Tri Sports Cycling Team : Rob Crouch
Why: - Stay in shape through the winter
- Meet fellow cyclists
- Pratice cyclocross techniques and bike handeling
- Get your Hup Hup ON!
- We'll provide the barriers - you provide the will.
- Camaraderie is first and formost, the more the merrier
- This is practice, very low key, very low budget
- I may change the dates if there are conflicts
- Unless there is a full on boomer, I will hopefully be there
- Emphasis will be on barriers, run-ups, and portaging
- Suggestions are welcome and encouraged
- Beers at Barleys afterword is a possibility

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Cross Happenings-

First things first, I have been doing exhaustive research on cross bike setup and I have been looking at running a tubeless Hutchinson’s setup. So after thinking carefully about how the Redline felt whilst racing last year I tore the Cannondale down to get some parts to make the setup as close as I wanted to my main road bike. Note to some of you locals, do your own research as no one around here seems to know dick about cross.
First up, ergo bars in, classic bend out. I am not one of those who are a fan of the classic bend and I have found this out the honest way, by riding them. So now I have the cockpit the same as the road rig with all of the same hardware but the setup is slightly different; a 1cm shorter stem, slightly higher hoods on the bars as turning the bars totally screws up the feel of the ergo drop while sprinting and cruising. The bars also ride about a half cm higher in relation to the saddle. The saddle is also a few mm shy of the road setup in relation to the BB. But in all, the setup is very close to the road bike. All of these changes were tested and tweaked to the mm for stability and control.
Next was the wheel setup. I chose the Mavic Aksium for the trial setup due to their bomb proof nature. The first setup was with the Mavic rim strips, Stan’s tape and the Stan’s rim strip, this was a no go and would not seat. The second setup was with the Mavic rim strips, velo rim strips, Stan’s tape and the Stan’s rim strip. I have heard conflicting reports of this setup but wanted to give this a try. The first tire like this seated ok, but I could tell that there might be an issue with the thicker section at the valve stem.
Note: all of this was done with a floor pump, and valve core installed.
The issue with this setup is that the increase in the bed thickness that makes a tubeless tire less likely to burp and easier to seat also inhibits the Stan’s strip from settling under the rim hook. After procuring another roll of the Stan’s yellow tape I removed everything, from the wheel and started fresh and clean. First I used the (narrow) yellow tape to build up only the center section with three plies, cutting each round of the tape at the valve hole a little shorter than the previous one and giving the tape ends a very tiny dab of glue for good measure. This was followed with two rounds of high quality electrical tape, not cut just punctured. At this point things looked very tight and clean with the center section built up nicely and the area around the valve hole not too built up and everything perfectly flat and evenly sealed. After installing the Stan’s strip and carefully pushing and pulling with an old rounded plastic tire lever, per the video on Stan’s site, the rim strip now lay perfectly around the valve hole. Remember that there is a thicker reinforcement area around the valve stem on the Stan’s rim strip, that is why (I believe) the way I did the rim taping will contribute to a safer, stronger tire bead seating area. All of this is more evident with parts in hand. After mounting the tire and giving it a quick pump I knew this was better as the tire took air on the first stroke, no seating issues, no fuss. Everything else was by the book.
Note: I did have a large hole in one tire that was missing a small chunk of rubber that would blow sealant at 45+ psi. I bought a Hutchinson tubeless patch kit but could not get the patch to sick so I just went with the glue, which seems to be just super glue. The glue seems to hold just fine on its own though.

The initial airing of this setup took 50+ psi without sealant and held air pretty well. At around twenty psi you could squeeze and twist the tire with very little air loss. The addition of sealant and the sealing procedure made this setup very tight indeed. I have been riding this setup at around 37 psi rear and 35 psi in the front with zero issues. I have also ridden the tires somewhat lower but the ride is pretty good at the higher setting. My skill level being what it is means that I have not tested very rigorously, but I am working on that.
After two weeks and about 5 rides there are still no issues. I have not done much high stress cornering but the grip level and ride quality is awesome. As my confidence and speed go up the testing will get much more serious and as I have just done my last road race of the year I am getting more focused on having fun on the cross bike. I have also been scouring the city and surrounding areas for practice cross sites and have been working on the flow of my practice course at the Caine-Halter Y. The port o’barriers are in the works and there is a chill in the morning breeze- Cross is Coming!

My oh my, the new Euro X Mag’s are out in the red and white colour combo. They would (will) look nice and tidy on the Redline. Between those brakes and the Dura Ace levers that will be on the next cross bike make-over go-round, this will save me a tick over a half pound.

I guess the TT bike will be the forgotten child for a while.

You know I HATE to do that.

It still belies the question of weather I should do the full monty, with the Dura Ace derailleurs to go with the levers and let the TT bike get the Ultegra stuff. Or stay with durability and leave the DA derailleurs to the TT bike… Hmmmm, decisions decisions.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Cross is coming!

I can smell it!
**************Post coming soon!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


Stolen from Cozy Behive:

The Evil Training Partner's Phrasebook

How to Translate Cycling's Confusing LanguageBy: Scott Martin (RoadBikeRider.Com) & Me

Cyclists are the biggest sandbags and secret evil trainers around - They'll say anything to soften you up for the kill. Don't let this trashtalking get to you.Study this handy rider's phrasebook to find out what they really mean when they say it.

"I'm out of shape."
Translation: I ride 400 miles a week and haven't missed a day since the Ford Administration. I replace my 11 tooth cog more often that you wash your shorts. My body fat percentage is lower than your mortgage rate.

"I'm not into competition. I'm just riding to stay in shape."
Translation: I will attack until you collapse in the gutter, babbling and whimpering. I will win the line sprint if I have to force you into on-coming traffic. I will crest this hill first if I have to grab your seat post and spray energy drink into your eyes.

"I'm on my beater bike."
Translation: I had this baby custom made in Tuscany using Titanium blessed by the Pope. I took it to a wind tunnel and it disappeared. It weighs less than a breath and cost more than a divorce.

"It's not that hilly."
Translation: This climb lasts longer than a presidential campaign. Be careful on the steep sections or you'll fall over - backward. You have 39x23 low gear? Here's the name of my knee surgeon.

"I rode yesterday, but it was just a charity ride."
Translation: I broke away exactly at the start point, did a 100K time trial like a mad dog, shattered all previous personal bests in the history of the event, then scrambled to the finish alone and went home...

""You're doing great."
Translation: You, lardo, I'd like to get home before midnight. This is what you get for spending the winter watching TV and eating chocolate.

"This is a no-drop ride."
Translation: I'll need an article of your clothing for the search and rescue dogs."It's not that far."Translation: Just bring your passport along."Its all downhill now!"Translation: 4000 feet of climbing later...

"I have a granny gear for the climbs today."
Translation: But I have honed my cadence to exactly 200 RPM so yes, I will be dropping you.

"All I know is to ride hard, I really don't care about weight."
Translation: The bike I'm on is currently 0.2 pounds heavier than the current lightest bike listed on the revered International Lightbikes listings. I have three other custom made all-Boron bikes stashed away in fireproof cabinets in the basement, and all their respective magnesium wheels, front and rear, are so lightweight, they have to be restrained from flying off with weights against the wall.

"I didn't do many races this season."
Translation: Instead, I did 3 double centuries all on aerobars, rode up an down Mt. Washington 4 times a week for 5 months straight, practiced time trialling till I had blood in my eyes, and frequently added a few hundred intervals on weekends as recovery rides.

"We just had a new baby, so I have lots of responsibilities getting in the way of cycling."
Translation: I ride to work and back every day, 50 miles each way so thats 100 miles per day. At night, I put the baby to sleep, help my wife go to sleep beside the baby, then take the bike out to ride all night till the morning. Next month, I plan to start my new book "Confessions of an all night rider." Oops, I'm sorry, did I just slip past your mileage goals for the month in one night?

"Its a great route, the roads are gorgeous and scenic."
Translation: 75% dirt roads with stones as big as your head, creepy houses on both your sides with ugly black barking dogs constantly on watch, two notches through the mountains that are hotspots for landslides any moment, Oh, and you can stop to rest anytime,anywhere but sorry, I'll be riding away since I can't put my training goals on hold for you for 2.5 minutes.

"C'mon , lets do an easy 1 hour spin on the bike path."
Translation: Break the speed limit, forget about brakes and scare the living shit out of poor walkers, runners and skaters on the bike path by whizzing past them at 40+ mph till your legs are numb with pain, you're foaming at the mouth like a snakebite victim, your breathing is worse than an asthmatic episode and there's a fine layer of nasal mucus all over your face.

"I'm not feeling strong today."
Translation: My cruising power output on any ride is way past what you put at red zone anaerobic threshold in your peak form, but I can hold 500 watts only for 40 minutes today as opposed to the usual 41, which could possibly make you cramp and bonk and puke before we even cross the half way point on today's ride.

"I have to take the missus out tonight and I'm not allowed to get too tired, plus I'm allowed only one hour to ride.
"Translation: Quick, what the hell are you waiting for??! Sacrifice yourself and be my lead out train for the entire ride thank you very much.

"Train hard, win easy."
Translation: You train hard, and I win easy.