Monday, December 21, 2009

One More Piece of Ti on the Seven

Just replaced the UN54 BB with a 113 mm Phil Wood Ti with SS cups, about 80 grams lighter.

After Blizzard "Ride"

Photo by Denis

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Snow Ride

Riding in 12 in snow was a lovely thought until the reality hit.


Posted by Picasa

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for Gambrill and Shed

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for Gambrill and Shed

It was a good workout. The Continental Vertical UST tires had great traction on snow covered rocks.

photo credit: Denis

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Titanium Bolts

From left to right:
M6x30 - stem cap, brake caliper mount
M6x25 - brake caliper mount, seatpost clamp
M6x20 - brake caliper mount
M6x18 - brake caliper mount
M5x30 - seat clamp
M5x20 - stem
M5x18 - stem
M5x15 - brake/shifter lever clamp
M5x10 (torx) - bottle cage, rotor

Total weight saving: negligible
Bling factor: zero
Rust-proof: priceless

Edit: I created a spreadsheet to record the types and sizes for various components.
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Fizik Blink

Sleek, light, convenient, easy to use, and completely useless during daytime.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

EXPO 2010 Shanghai

Private Enterprises Pavillion

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Recent Rides

Saturday morning was Denis' MoCo Epic Fall Colors edition. Some nice photos from his Picasa album here.

Thursday I hauled the Electric Warrior inside my car to Frederick and rode with Andy and Mark after work. The entire route was relatively flat, but 2-hr+ nearly 40-mile pedaling was still a pretty good workout. Mark the strong rider pulled most of the way impressively.

In both cases the GPS worked flawlessly.

Photo credit Denis Chazelle

Monday, October 19, 2009


Photo by Denis. We were on Skink. I think I was trying to clip in the left foot.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Garmin Edge 305 (II)

Finally got my Garmin Edge 305 back from Garmin. It looks like a brand new unit. Charged up and everything works fine. Can't beat Garmin's service.

Monday, October 12, 2009


Ratchet Wheel mounting System, by DT Swiss. Solid 5 mm wheel skewers. No worries about loose QRs any more.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Bike Light Test Report

Here is the setup.

Andy and I used the flashlights while Rob and Jack were with their L&M ARC. We came back from Gambrill, skipped the Lawn Mower and took the road. After we jumped onto the trail we turned on the lights. We rested in the Hamburg lot for a while, and did the Knucklebuster out and back. Over all I think we had lights on for more than an hour.

Comparing to the L&M ARC, the flashlight has narrower beam so the perception of brightness on the trail was relatively similar. The color temperature is a little warmer than the ARC's super white.

The battery didn't get even warm, the emitter was slightly warm.

We both mounted the flashlights on the helmet. No flickering was noticed.

I wish it could be even brighter, but the light is sufficient for doing night rides. I rode fast coming back to the parking lot from Gambrill Park road, and it worked fine.

Overall I'm happy. It is also perfect to be carried in the Camelbak as spare or for emergency.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Saturday Shed Ride

Great ride! It reminded me how much fun riding on rocks is.

Bike Lights

Time in the year to prepare for night rides. From DealExtreme I recently got a cheap setup (<$50 total), 900 lumens, last for 2 hours (with a battery change), 190 grams including the helmet mount (a little heavier than the Light&Motion's 150 grams) but still bearable, and best of all, no cables. Here is the list:
  • UltraFire 18650 3.7V 3000mAh Lithium Batteries (2-Pack), Item# 26249
  • MTE SSC P7 900-Lumen 2-Mode LED Flashlight (18650), Item# 12325
  • DSD 18650 CR123A Charger Black EKARP, Item# 0936 (I didn't buy this one because I already have a 18650 charger, but got it for Andy, Jack, and Rob.)
  • Universal Nylon Mount for Flashlights and Lasers, Item# 12000

The light doesn't seem to output 900 lumens driven by a single battery. I'll do a field test this week.

BTW, it took about three weeks from the time I placed the order online to the package arrived from Hong Kong.

Monday, September 7, 2009

SM100 Recap

Weather was perfect and the trails were dry and fast.

550 riders launched from the camp ground at 0630. I was ahead of half of them so wasn't affected much by the huge dust ball.

Denis and I rode together briefly on the first climb. I fell in a pile of sand on a right turn, and never saw him again.

I was a little cautious about my pace. Last year I had an issue with my knees. I definitely don't want to revisit that. Also I didn't leave my lights in the drop bag, which means I had to reach AS5 by 1620, and have enough juice left for 25 miles more riding. So I rode hard, but reserved a little.

Went into the hike-a-bike section to AS2 with some pretty good riders so there was space for me to ride a good portion of the trail.

Between AS2 and 3, I cleared all the climbs , had only one dab on the descent, plus a flat. When I arrived at AS3, my knees were fine. I knew I had improved from last year.

I rode most of the trails between AS3 and 4. The rocks gardens were shorter than those in the Shed so no problem there. However I did make a stupid mistake and fell down the hill - luckily I was able to grab a tree to stop me from going too far down. I couldn't do some steep technical sections. It might have helped if I had a 34t cog in the back.

From AS4 to 5 was a long 19 miles of road and fire road climb. I felt pretty good on the road section and passed everybody in sight, including one guy who lost his middle and big rings pedaling hard with his granny on the road. Later there was a female rider (Bike Factory Racing) caught up and stayed on my tail for a good few miles. Sharp right turn onto the fire road, I scaled down quite a bit so I could keep pedaling, and she took off for good. At that point I realized my endurance was probably just up to around 70 miles or 8 hours. Nonetheless I pedaled up non-stop. I was so glad to see AS5 finally. It was around 1520.

Left AS5, I kept pushing up to the Apex. I got passed by quite a few riders. A singlespeeder passed by, I told him it was all downhill from there. Later we both found I was wrong.

The singlespeeder and I arrived at AS6 together. He recognized me from last year, well, he remembered my orange Vicious Cycles. We chatted a little, and he left AS6 about 45 seconds ahead of me.

I used the big ring on the road and caught up him turning onto the last long climb. He was leading at the beginning but soon had to stop and walk some of the climbs. I was able to go up non-stop in my middle ring so finally I was ahead of him.

I took the last long descent to camp ground easy and really enjoyed it. A couple riders passed me but I didn't care at all. At that point all I wanted was to enjoy the last bit of riding and to be home safe and sound.

When I hit the gong, the time was 11 hours and 29 minutes.

Over the course I consumed approximately 4 bottles of Gatorade, two cans of Dr. Pepper, three cups of Coke, a few pieces of PBJ, some bananas, a couple gummy bears, a couple chocolate sweets, and some mints. I didn't eat any Shot Bloks. Except for Gatorade and Dr. Pepper, the stuff I left in the drop bags all went to waste.

There was a photographer taking pictures at finish line and on the course. I'll see if I can find one of mine later once he posted them online.

The bike was cleaned and lubed the next day. A few scratches on the rear rim, probably from riding through those rock gardens. Oh, well.

BTW, that was my first ever camping experience. I fell into good sleep soon listening to a mother signing lullaby to her 11 month old baby in the neighboring tent. Wasn't it nice?

GPS trace:

Discussion thread on a local MTB forum (MORE):

Fellow rider, Denis, posted an amazing time 9:30, took the 2nd in Clydesdale, and 3rd in Master.

Results on Cycling News

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Off to Stokesville

I'm gonna do a few things differently:

1. Camping instead of Motel
2. Geared full suspension instead of rigid SS
3. Waterbottle instead of Camelbak
4. Road helmet instead of mountain, that should up the AVS by 0.142% :)
5. Probably not gonna leave my light at AS5. If I can't make it to the AS5 by 4:20p, I just stop there.

Pretty much got everything packed and bike serviced. Now all I need is luck.

Sunday, August 30, 2009


Can one survive the SM100 with two water bottles and refill at the six aid stations? I'm gonna try it. Here is the plan:

One 750 mL bottle in bottle cage
One 500-mL bottle in jersey pocket
One pump behind seatpost

Also in pocket:
One spare tube
One tire lever
One spare derailleur hanger
One Powerlink
One chain tool
One set of wrenches: M8, M6, M5, M4, Torx 25
One box of stick on patches
Two packs of Clif Shot Bloks
One car key (maybe)
Nuun (maybe)

In drop bags:
Packs of Clif Bloks

Monday, August 24, 2009

Jersey Size

European vs. American.

Both are size large, but the blue one (European) is a little tight for mountain biking, maybe OK for road rides.

Garmin Edge 305

My Edge 305 is having an issue. Recently it would shut off automatically in the middle of a bumpy ride,especially on the rigid Vicious Monolith. It happened several times. It restarted fine every time. I contacted Garmin today via email, will see how they say about it.

BTW the new Garmin Connect doesn't like my 305. I cannot upload any long rides. The browser just hangs.

Update Monday 8/24: Garmin replied the issue is covered by warranty. I'll send it back after the SM100.

Friday, August 21, 2009


I am going to pack bags of caffeinated Shot Bloks and a tube of Nuun for the long ride in two weeks. Never had Nuun before, hopefully it works for me.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Nearly DNFed MoCo Loop

I almost DNFed the MoCo loop on Sunday. Actually technically I did because I had to skip the Clopper Lake and headed straight back to Schaeffer with my last bit of will power.

Now think of it most likely it was the electrolytes. I drank and sweated at least twice as much as I did before. All fluid I took in was water.

Denis was strong all the way.

GPS track:

First Solo Road Ride

Saturday early morning I did my first solo road ride on the Vicious. 25 miles from Germantown to Poolesville following the loop posted by Todd on bikely. I had to stop a few times just to make sure I was still on the right track. Other than those I was smoothly cruising. There wasn't much climbing so geared at 44x15 was fine for that loop. But still I might try 44x16 next time just to get a sense.

GPS track:

Turns Distance
Total Distance
Head southwest on Schaeffer Rd 2.4 2.4
Slight right at MD-121/White Ground Rd 1.0 3.3
Turn left at Old Bucklodge Ln 2.0 5.3
Turn left at Bucklodge Rd/MD-117 0.7 6.0
Turn right at Whites Store Rd 1.8 7.8
Turn left at Peach Tree Rd 2.6 10.4
Turn left at Darnestown Rd/MD-28 0.2 10.6
Turn right at Cattail Rd 1.9 12.5
Turn left to stay on Cattail Rd 0.2 12.7
Turn left at Fisher Ave/MD-107 0.1 12.8
Turn right at Wootton Ave 0.2 13.0
Turn left at Hughes Rd 2.9 15.9
Turn left at Sugarland Rd 1.3 17.2
Turn left to stay on Sugarland Rd 3.5 20.7
Turn left at Darnestown Rd/MD-28 0.0 20.7
Turn right at MD-121/White Ground Rd 1.7 22.5
Sharp right at Schaeffer Rd 2.4 24.8

Monday, August 3, 2009

Vicious Cycles Electric Warrior

It's built.

I still need to swap out some parts - crankset (currently it's an improper mountain set, the chainline is outboard way too much), stem (a real 73 degree 100 mm road stem), seatpost (a shorter Thomson), track end chain tugs (the Surly is just overkill for this), and maybe gearing (right now is 44-15, will try 44-16 later), but the bike is rideable as is, and quite comfortable. I really love the bullhorn bars and the TT brake levers.

17 lb with pedals. All black and white so I added in one red chainring bolt so it doesn't look like a 1930 movie.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Broken Saddle

Date: 7/28/2009, 5pm-ish
Place: Knuckle buster
Saddle: Fizik Arione
Bike: Seven Verve SS
Rider weight with gears: 150 lb

The plastic frame cracked all the way across in the middle. The cover was intact and held up fine for the next two hours ride in the Shed. Too bad the saddle didn't even last for a year.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Kitting for A SS Road Build

Frame: Vicious Cycles Electric Warrior
Fork: Vicious Cycles
Headset: Chris King
Seatpost clamp: DKG
Brake: Dura Ace 7800
Brake lever: SRAM TT 900
Cable+housing: SRAM
Handlebars: Profile bullhorn
Tape: Deda
Stem: Salsa
Seatpost: Thomson Elite
Crankset: Truvative Stylo SS
Bottom bracket: GXP External
Chain: SRAM 870
Cog: Endless 15t or Chris King 16t or 18t
Wheels: Spinergy X aero lite
Skewers: Spinergy
Tubes: Continental
Tyres: Continental GP 4000
Saddle: Fizik Arione CX

Should I run freewheel or fixed?

(last updated: 8/3/2009)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Ti Bolts

King Headset top cap: 1x M6x25
Thomson X4 stem: 6x M5x20
Thomson seatpost: 2x M5x35
RXC seat collar: 1x M6x25
XTR front derailleur: 1x M5x18, 1x M5x10
Disc rotor: 12x M5x10 torx
Elixir brake lever: 4x M5x18
Elixir brake caliper: 4x M6x20, 2x M6x18
Matchmaker: 2x M5x18
Bottle cage: 2x M5x15

Shock bolt upper: 2x TBD
Shock bolt lower: 1x TBD
Links: 4x TBD, 2x TBD, 2x TBD
Raceface Dues chainring bolts: 8x TBD, 4x TBD

Does anyone know the bolt sizes for a 08 Racer X carbon frame? I'm too lazy to disassemble everything.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Nice WI Tools

Chainring lock ring tool (left) and eccentric hub/freewheel tool (right). Nice and solid.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Bike Transporter

Just noticed today my bike transporter is getting old...

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Thursday, May 28, 2009

New Lid

It appears to be "rounder" than other Giros I have and fits my head very well. The medium size weighs only 299 grams on my digital scale. The straps are a little too long. Maybe I should cut them down later.

Now this will allow me to go 5.7% faster...

There is a very thorough review on this at Competitive Cyclist.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

MoCo Loop

Schaeffer, Hoyles Mill Connector, Black Hill, Little Bennett, Lower Magruder, Seneca Greenway, Clopper Lake. 58.68 miles. 6hr15min moving time, 8hr29min total time.

Monday, May 18, 2009

De Rosa King 3

Beautiful white paint, from R&A Cycles in New York.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Afterwork Shed Ride

...and the video

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Road Bike?

Now I'm seriously thinking about getting a road bike, either a full bike or building it myself. Size 54 should be just right. To me C and Ti make more sense as frame material, so they are my first choices. A Dura Ace group would be nice, but Ultegra should work just fine. A set of light wheels? Lots of homework to do.

Of course there is also new road helmet, and gloves, and shoes...

Saturday, May 9, 2009


Did my first ever road ride with Andy and Rob on Thursday. A 28-mile loop around Middletown. Rob kindly let me borrow his Lemond. The bike has a 10-speed rear and a triple front. I found I needed them all.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Under 19 lb Full Suspension at Speedgoat

Saw this build on the Speedgoat site. Really like the SRAM Red with bar-end shifter. I would have probably done that too had I known of the Paul adapter.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Popped Spoke

I started to hear the "cling-cling" sound coming from the rear maybe around lap 7 . I couldn't figure it out until Sunday when I was cleaning the bike. A spoke was popped out! That was only the second ride on the wheelset, I'm under 150lb, and didn't even jump anything. The lack of robustness got me a little worried. I would certainly hate to see it happen again in the middle of SM100...

Monday, April 20, 2009

LBD 2009

GPS trace
More pictures here.

18 laps in 13:31:36, 16th out of 26 teams.
Lap times
1: 37:38 37:38
2: 39:45 1:17:23
3: 40:17 1:57:39
4: 40:43 2:38:21
5: 40:55 3:19:16
6: 45:38 4:04:54
7: 45:46 4:50:40
8: 50:03 5:40:42
9: 44:29 6:25:10
10: 45:52 7:11:01
11: 54:16 8:05:17
12: 46:17 8:51:33
13: 44:19 9:35:52
14: 47:09 10:23:00
15: 46:38 11:09:37
16: 48:24 11:58:01
17: 46:57 12:44:57
18: 46:39 13:31:36