Top 50 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Get into Mountain Biking

As much as I love mountain biking, I realized there are some pitfalls to the sport. But I found these out AFTER the fact that I started riding. Perhaps if someone told me about them, I may have gotten into bowling or mopeds….ya I can picture…mopedriders.com….

With that in mind, don’t get into mountain biking because…

1.Expensive to get into.

2.Parts break all the time.

3.Parts wear out.

4.Flat tires.

5.Throwing up after a climb on your single speed.

6. Sweat.

7.Dirt.

8.Falling.

9.Getting hurt.

10. Ticks.

11. Poison Oak.

12. Bug bites.

13. Moldy water bladder.

14.Walking after your bike breaks down.

15. Driving 50 miles to ride 10 miles.

16.Loss of money.

17. Poor resale value of products.

18.Addicted to mountain biking websites.

19.Always looking out for a good deal.

20. Getting into online fights about what is better, 26,650, 29er.

21. Convincing the wife to let you go riding.

22.Trying to get the girlfriend into riding.

23.Hoping that your kids will become the next world champion.

24. Sweaty balls.

25. Chamois…how come it’s not spelled SHAMMY?

26.Bicycle that cost more than my car.

27.Garage becomes your own personal shop.

28. Can’t decide on which jersey to wear.

29. Cycling socks…you don’t need them. There’s no Sock-Police to tell you that you HAVE to wear them. Just use regular socks.

30. You don’t like people.

31. You don’t like douche bags.

32. You are a douche bag.

33. Racing.

34. Jumps.

35. Rocks.

36. Air shocks.

37. Tubeless tires that leak.

38. Too many types of lube to choose from.

39. XT, XTR,XO,X7,STX,KKK,ABC, BBW,DEORE,RED…too many product lines to remember.

40. Not being able to breathe after a climb.

41. Can’t bunny hop.

42. Can’t wheelie.

43. Can’t change a flat.

44. Can’t fix your bike.

45. No power tools involved when fixing a bike….pssh. mOaR POWaH!!!

46. Garage full of bikes.

47. 1Bed Room Apt full of bikes, no room for furniture.

48. Bike hoarding.

49. Excess parts…you’ll never need that 7speed freewheel again, but you hold on to it just in case!

50. Fun. Yes…it’s too fun.

But don’t you worry, I’m not a Negative Nancy, I did find one reason why you should get into it and it’s probably the main reason why I tell people to try it…and that’s #50…yep, It’s fun! I can’t even count how many times I’ve had a fun time riding with Lady P and my friends. From all the memories of racing, biking trips and the great conversations I’ve had over the years, I simply love mountain biking.

Changing up your bike’s color with Plasti-Dip

plastidip

I’m sure you’ve all heard of Plasti-Dip. It’s that rubber coating that you can dip your tools into so you’ll get a rubberized surface. If you have pair of pliers that have a rubber handle, that stuff is like Plasti-Dip.

However, what I did was use the spray can version of it. Since I’ve been watching Youtube Videos on how people use Plasti-Dip (dip) on various car, wheel, motorcycle and anything that people want dipped. My first experience with it was my motorcycle.

I wanted to change up the way it looks, and what better way to do that than the color. I went with the matte black. I bought 2 cans from Home Depot for $5.97 each.Below are my side covers and tank.
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Here’s how they turned out.
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Knowing that it was easy to use and the dip was readily available, I decided to try it on Burt Reynolds. Stripped down the bike to it’s frame. Gave it a good washing by using soapy water and some degreaser.

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As I started working, I noticed that there was a texture starting to develop with the dip. Not satisfied with it, I decided to rip off the 4 coats that I just did and start over. Look, it really does just peel off!
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By the way, I didn’t bother removing the headset cups and bottom bracket cups. I made sure to spray directly on them because the dip easily peels right off once you’re done.

After 5 coats, that’s 1.5 cans of Dip, I got this.

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Remember the bottom bracket cups? Well all I had to do was cut around them with a sharp knife and peel. I did the same for the headset.
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Here’s the finished product. Not bad eh. I’m not entirely convinced if I like the way this color covers. You can still see the REDLINE logo underneath. Not that I don’t like REDLINE, love those guys, but the black dip covered up everything on my motorcycle.
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Here’s a closer look of the frame.
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My Chris King headset nice and clean, no dip residue.

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I’ll be riding this weekend to see how well it holds up. By the way this stuff gets EVERYWHERE! But the good thing is, its easy to clean up.
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One thing to keep in mind when working with dip. Do it where there is very little wind. Also, I learned that you have to hit the spray nozzle before you spray the frame. If you point the nozzle to the frame, then hit it, you’ll get globs. So remember, hit nozzle, spray, then pass over the frame. You can find basic colors of Plasti-Dip at your local Home Depot for $5.97. I happen to get lucky with the Blue Blaze color, they normally don’t stock that. Plasti-Dip offers a variety of colors and you can order them online, but be prepared to pay as much as $10 a can plus shipping.

Happy MALentine’s Day

So, Valentine weekend has now come to an end. Valentine’s Day was this past Thursday. Some of you may have chosen to make a long weekend out of it. You obviously do not have kids, are not married, or, if you are sentenced to life, you have served less than 10 years of that marital sentence. You blew hundreds, maybe thousands of dollars on a created holiday to get you to do just that. You should have spent that money on something that will give you more pleasure — bike shit. Thankfully, my wife hates roses, hates ’em. I don’t have to buy her chocolates either because she, like most women, wants to lose that last 5 pounds before beach weather hits. I got the kids to create a card out of construction paper, white glue, macaroni, rainbow flakes, pixie dust, phoenix feathers, kraken scales, and unicorn. . . corns. Voila! Valentine’s Day handled. Unlike my friend, poor Captain Cranium, I get sexytime with the missus more than just my birthday and Christmas. So who needs this made-up holiday?

Let’s celebrate Malentine’s day. Malentine, the patron saint of pet peeves. Mal, from the Latin meaning bad, ill, or wrong. The following list of irritants are all bad, wrong, and make me ill:

1. Wearing bike clothes to the trailhead. Perhaps this came from my years of organized team sports. We would wear a shirt and tie, get on a bus, travel to the den of our opponent, then get dressed for battle. Now I’m not suggesting you wear your Sunday best prior to riding your bike, but for comfort’s sake, don’t wear your entire riding kit in the car. Nevermind looking like a dork-on-wheels (that’s what you are) sitting at the 241 toll plaza with your neon sublimated cycling jersey on. You’re then going to wear that sweat crusted, stinky, muddy, bloodied, Cytomax sticky, wet rag home. How hard is it to put on a clean t-shirt? Don’t tell me you are afraid of forgetting something so you get dressed at home knowing you have everything. You are an adult aren’t you? Why not just put on your helmet, gloves, and clipless shoes on at home too? I’ll grant you a tiny bit of leeway and allow you to wear your cycling shorts. Afterall, I wouldn’t want you fumbling next to your car with a towel around your waist, trying to pull down your tightie-whities, all the while terrified that said towel with catch a gust and expose your little cheeto.

2. Pre-ride bike repair. Now that you are dressed and ready to go, the rest of us begin to pedal off when you yell out to us, “Any of you guys have a pump, chain lube, Park T-handle wrench set, bearing press, or fitness I can borrow?” You knew you were riding today, right? Too busy last night catching up on this season’s The Bachelor to make sure your bike was ready to go? So you had the forethought to bring your own pump, lube, and tool set with you so as not to ask us. Use that forethought to take care of any maintenance at home. Don’t lube your chain right there before we set off either. You should know how I feel about that.

3. Dumping grounds. Okay, done dumping on you, let’s ride. WTF! Great Odin’s Raven (been watching Anchorman) look at all the trash strewn about. I hate those lazy mofos who use any bit of open land just off the road for their own dumping grounds. Sure, this looks like a great spot to dump all your shit that is too large or awkward to just leave at the curb. Even Jules and Vincent took their trash with them to dispose of properly. Or, the savages who, when on their “nature hike,” just toss their Red Bull can or Starbucks cup into the sagebrush. The only positive I can find — on a recent exploratory ride I was unsure which way would lead me back to the main road. How did I find my way out? I saw a discarded mattress, sofa, 2 t.v.s, fridge, and decomposing body. I followed the trash. The piles grew bigger and bigger then bam, civilization. Even pot farmers and coke producers pick up after themselves.

trailside trash

4. Mix and don’t match. Pick a component, any component, and stick with it. Shimano begets Shimano, Sram begets Sram, Thomson begets Thomson, so on. Your bike is so bitchin with its Shimano cranks, Sram shifters and derailleurs, Thomson seatpost, FSA stem, Easton bars, etc. Buy your bike, ride the crap out of it. When you know better, spend more, and become enlightened, stick with a manufacturer.

5. Sitting backwards. So you’re all high on yourself now because you just installed a Thomson seatpost and Thomson stem. One thing smartguy, your post is backwards. Is that why you don’t change at the trailhead? Afraid when you put on your pants the fly will be in the back?

The Right Way
The Right Way

Don’t worry, I’m not one to make fun of you behind your back. If you fit into any of the above bonehead categories I’ll call you out to your face (then make fun of you behind your back). Happy Valentine’s Day.

How to do a bunny hop-Revisited

The video that I made, starring our friend Scott Tauzin that shows you how to do a bunny hop has received quite a bit of attention on Youtube. As of this writing, it has had 10,675 views, not bad. It’s not viral, but pretty good in my book.

Just in case you’re still having a hard time doing bunny hops, here’s some help!

Thursday Tech Tip: How to Build a Bicycle Wheel

Khoa made an in-depth video showing you how to build a wheel. He’s using Mavic 717 rims, American Classic Hubs and DT Swiss Spokes. Since building wheels isn’t something that takes a few minutes, I’d suggest you grab a drink and a snack before you watch the video.

By the way, the wheelset he built are sooooo sweet! Black rim, nipples and hub with silver spokes!

Enjoy!

Getting your mechanical brakes to feel like hydraulic brakes: Update

I’ve talked about this subject quite often for the sole purpose of trying to save a buck. My mechanical Avid BB5s have been great to me and I really don’t see the need to upgrade to hydraulic brakes. For one its too expensive and secondly I’m just poor and frustrated so that means I have to find ways to make what I have work and last. To give you some history on this, it all started because a few guys that I worked with at a LBS told me that you can run 4mm derailleur housing with your brake cables. This process is supposed to give you compression-less braking in which would feel more like you’re using hydraulic brakes.

So with that all said I started my experiment with installing some 4mm der. housing for my rear brake and left the 5mm brake housing for the front. On my first ride out with the new 4mm set up, I was quickly impressed with the modulation that my rear brake provided. Braking was quicker and snappier. To help you understand this…if you’ve ever tried hydraulic brakes…well think back to the first time you tried them. Remember how you first pulled the lever when you were riding the bike. Remember how quick the wheel(s) locked? Well think of that when I’m describing how the 4mm der housing felt when I first pulled the levers. I was actually shocked on how well it worked!

Fast forwarding, Nokon Cables have provided me a set of their wold famous compression-less housing and cables. Gore also provided me some cables as well, but that’s going to be tested later. For now I’ve installed the front brake with the Nokon Cables and left the 4mm der housing in the rear.
nokon cables

Right now the front brakes feel pretty decent, but later this week I’ll testing out this set up on my favorite rock garden, Rock-it in Aliso Woods.

Before you go out and replace your 5mm brake housing with 4mm der housing…you may want to wait a while, just for liability reasons. One of the warnings that my old coworkers as well as Steve Richey of Nokon said was that 4mm der can explode or fail while under braking pressure. So for now, let me take one for the team…cuz’ that’s the kind of guy I am.

I’ll be reporting back soon with some more information to see how this all works for me. Keep checking the site!