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Old 11-08-2006, 04:36 PM
tao tao is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 38

I second the idea of Koolstop salmon pad which is designed for wet weather.

Brake pad can wear very fast in wet condition. CapnSnarls already explained the reason. When this happens, the distance between the brake pads and the rim increases. Therefore, it requires more distance on your brake lever to apply the same amount of force. It is possible that the distance between the brake pads and the rim is too much that they become less effective even the brake lever hits the bottom.

If your brake has the barrel adjuster, you can tighten the cable to fix the problem on the fly. Then readjust the cable tension when you reach home. Check your brake often in the winter.

Be safe on the road.
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Old 11-09-2006, 08:12 AM
cranky_pedaller cranky_pedaller is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 14

yes, great advice

i <3 teh intarwebz...
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Old 11-09-2006, 08:23 AM
bikewonder bikewonder is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 103
Default bike grease on clothes

First let me say thank you for all the advice. How wonderful to have such smart, resourceful people around.

On that note I would like to pass along some advice I picked up from the Shift page about bike grease on bike jackets, etc. Cheers.

How to Get Bike Grease Off Your Clothes
by members of the shift list

- Go to any bike shop, and have them give you a papertowel drenched in bike degreaser -- it should do magic.

- dr. bronner's liquid soap always works for me.
rub a little in the affected spot...throw it in the wash.

- I've had great luck with Shout. Spray it LIBERALLY on the stain -
enough to saturate - and let it rest for 15 or 20 minutes at a minimum. Wash it warm or hot water.

- orange skins work well.

- Rub w/ vegetable oil; then wash w/dish detergent and sponge. Veg. oil breaks down grease. Amazing! (Try it on your skin if you get bike grease on it!)

- Katy had a great suggestion w/ the vegetable grease / dishsoap. I usually am able to remove every trace of grease on clothing (even natural fabrics like cotton) by brushing dishsoap into the spot w/ an old toothbrush, leaving it for awhile, then brushing again later w/ some running water. I use biodegradable dishsoap that cleans using grapefruit seed extract, it's called BioKleen and is sold at the co-ops in bulk and in containers.

- Mechanics hand cleaner (GOOP) works very well on all clothing.

- I carry around with me a travel packet of make-up remover wipes, they are great for getting grease off your clothes, bike, or off your hands when you need to mess with your chain.

- My down vest was covered with a bunch of old bike grease stains. I'd washed the jacket several times, but they still came out after I'd
left Citrasolv on them overnight and then dabbed at it with a rag for a while and rinsed it with plain water.

- Yeah, the Veg. Oil doesn't break down the grease so much as mix with it - like disolves into like - and these are both oils, so basically
you are mixing/suspending the bike grease in veggie oil and then
washing this lighter mixture off with a detergent. A trick I learned from a friend who worked on cars is to rub dishwashing soap into your hands like hand lotion before you start working on your bike, it makes your hands a bit slippery but you can wipe them off with a rag before you start and it don't find its too bad. Then when you do get dirt on your hands its already suspended in the detergent. Just rinsing your hands with water when you're done will remove an amazing ammount of dirt. However - you have to start with dry hands and if your hands get wet in the process of working on your bike forget it.

- "Simple Green" has always worked for me in removing grease stains. Spray the affected area and apply a little elbow grease (i.e. rubbing the material between your fists) before throwing the jacket into the washer.
Nothing compares to the simple pleasure of a bike ride.
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Old 11-12-2006, 03:56 PM
bikewonder bikewonder is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 103
Default my brakes work!

Yippie, thanks for the advice my brakes are working again. And my new Goretex gloves and socks (plus wool liners for both) are fantastic. Bring on the rain and cold...I am gear ready. Of course, mentally readiness is completely another thing.

Be safe out there ladies. Cheers, Janis
Nothing compares to the simple pleasure of a bike ride.
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Old 11-13-2006, 11:21 AM
barbaroo barbaroo is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: NE Portland
Posts: 19
Default rims yes, but don't forget the brake pads

Brake pads wear quite fast in the mucky conditions of winter so keep an eye on them. If you don't know how to judge when they're worn out you can pop into most shops and get a free evaluation. Also, know that pads don't wear evenly and they can also develop a sort of crud patina that reduces braking ability. A nice trick to help them out a bit is to buff them with sandpaper to remove the patina and any uneven edges.

Finally, one bit that's not been discussed is that cyclists, like autos, need to adjust their stopping distance in foul weather. That means slowing down a bit and allowing more time to stop. Oh, and watch out for those wet leaves!
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