After finally getting the bike set up how I wanted, and working through multiple flats (ended up being crappy tubes, replaced with some Specialized tubes and ZERO issues since) I went out for a decent ride.
That does look like a nice place to ride, thanks for sharing the pics.
I had a new Specialized tube blow out on the front of one of my road bikes the other day. It's lucky I was going pretty slow, the tire blew off the rim on one side when the tube ruptured. Looked like some kind of defect, split open about 5inches on the inside of the tube.
I had the exact same thing happen on my first "real" ride, but with my rear tire. It was a "Schwinn" branded, self sealing tube from Meijer - it blew out with a load BANG right after locking up my rear wheel. Luckily I was on a straight flat road with no traffic. It was after that I just went to my LBS and started buying tubes from them. (Which I should have done in the first place) 🙂
@bicyclebuck I have the height just where I want it and I am trying to avoid spending money on a stem. At this point I am about $60 into handlebars though... I think a little more width is all I really need. Until I decide I need to change something else.
@bicyclebuck Aside from the wastefulness of that approach nicer bikes are also nice to ride. I grew up on big box bikes (for the most part, I did have a 24" Gary Fisher when I was pretty young) and the difference in even a half-hearted attempt at a higher end bike is amazing. My first "higher end" bike was a $350 hardtail that I rode the piss out of for a couple years, broke everything, wore the rest out, but it got me in and led me to building a Banshee Paradox back when 29ers were not ubiquitous. THAT bike was fantastic. Enormous to fit me (XL frame) but smooth, lighter than it should have been, and just worked. Built like a tank and handled daily riding duties and trails 3-4 times a week.
Yeah I could have rammed through crap bikes but having one reliable, well built bike was so much nicer to live wtih
@s65 it looks like it's a bout a 20 mile loop or so, which would be a nice ride.
I really like the C&O towpath. I have walked about 30 miles of it from DC west (so up to about Poolesville, MD) but the other day was my first time riding to Great Falls from my house (my girlfriend lives in the Palisades and I have done it from there before). Doing it from home adds about 15 more miles. The path is in pretty good shape and shade that is provided is a godsend around here in the summer.
@wrong-wheel-drive I get it, yesterday was similar for me. I thought I was in for around 4k, which would still be big for me, but our route was sort of open ended, I'd never done it, and my buddy undersold it (as usual, haha).
@Rusty-Vandura Not sure what you're asking? If you're asking what I was overtightening, I was constantly having to tighten the toe straps on the toeclips to prevent my feet from slipping out of the pedal.
If you're asking what clipless pedals I'm using, it had been Eggbeaters on the road bike and SPDs on the mtn bike. Now it's SPD on the road bike and flat pedals on the mtn bike.
@stuckmtb Nice! Whatever I get would have to be a bit of an all-rounder. Not for groceries and beer runs ( I have an old Alpinestars Cro-Mega for that) but road & trail because I'm not made of either serious road bike or dedicated gravel bike money, and love riding both. I've just been switching wheelsets on this bike, depending on the ride. I like the idea of bombproof feel-good steel, but there are some fairly serious climbs and handling-heavy descents around here so although I'm not a weight weenie, I don't want to go too heavy on the bike. My favorite LBS is a Surly dealer, one of the guys is going to see if he can dig a Straggler up to test ride sometime.