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  #161  
Old 26.03.2010, 14:10
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

All rim brakes that aren't V-brakes need pretty much the same amount of cable pull (there are a couple of exceptions, but I won't get into that here). I believe the pull needed for center-pull cantilevers can actually be adjusted by using different length straddle wires, but I always get confused when dealing with those. Anyway, almost all interruptor levers have the same cable pull as standard drop-bar levers, so there shouldn't be any compatibility problem there (there are one or two designed for V-brakes, but I doubt you've managed to get hold of a pair of those - they are hard to find). The extra levers that I have are these, you could have them for 30 CHF.

I'm glad to hear that 27" stuff is available over here if needed. I believe the same chain is needed for 5, 6, or 7-speed cassettes. As you discovered, they are cheap and readily available.
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  #162  
Old 29.03.2010, 17:03
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

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Thanks for the responses guys. Next question, what disc brakes would you recommend, how much do they cost and how much (ball-park) would a bike shop charge to mount them?
Paddy, if you're retrofitting an existing bike from v-brakes to disks, you could consider with the Avid BB7 Mechanically actuated ones. They're less expensive than a full hydo set, and you could even consider just mounting them on the front where the most braking is done.

I have this setup on one of my XC race bikes (front only) and it's a very good compromise between cost, weight and simplicity.

The mechanical type allow you to use your existing brake levers (saves $) and are very durable, simple to use and setup.

Generally, once they are setup well disk brakes in my experience (both mech. and hydro) require less service & attention than rim brakes. Like any change though, there is a learning curve but the pros outweigh the cons by a huge margin.
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  #163  
Old 30.03.2010, 03:02
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

hey, chrisw (or any other lausanne cyclists): might you know about this little bike shop i had passed last summer in lausanne, that seemed to be fostering a little fixed-gear (and perhaps also skateboarder) scene? the place seemed like more or less a hole in the wall, like perhaps it wasn't even really a bike shop, but maybe just a storage space some local art school kids had rented. i recall that it was in flon, close to the "g-star raw" store -- along Rue des Côtes de Montbenon, i think. i was trying to locate it on google maps, but the street view doesn't extend to these narrow streets. it would be pretty amusing if there were an appreciable number of fixed gear riders in lausanne, given its topography. if it exists, you know what it's called?
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  #164  
Old 30.03.2010, 03:45
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

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it would be pretty amusing if there were an appreciable number of fixed gear riders in lausanne, given its topography.
I don't know the shop you're talking about, but there are at least two other fixie shops in Lausanne: one on Place du Nord (or Rue du Nord?) and one on Rue des Deux Marchés. I don't know their names, but knowing the street names might help you locate them using google. Of course, I rarely if ever see anyone actually riding fixies in town, but then again, fixie riders don't buy them for functional purposes anyway, do they?

(Actually, I must confess that I do have a soft spot for fixies in the sense that track cycling is seriously awesome! But riding fixies in the Aigle velodrome is a whole lot safer than riding in traffic! Brakes come in handy surprisingly often.)
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  #165  
Old 31.03.2010, 18:30
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

I'm not sure if it hasn't been covered earlier before but here I have questions to cycling gurus...

Since I started clocking the km's back in my usual rate 100km per week on the road bike, I have noticed significant increase in fatigue in my tennis elbow which anyway has already been knackered in the past by regular tennis sessions and weightlifting. The pain just came back recently. So here is my theory but I might be wrong, which says that I do not use cycling gloves/mittens which significantly absorb all sorts of vibrations coming from terrain irregularities of the road, be it bike alone or any other sort . Could it be also position of arms on the handlebars and etc.

Well, this might sound radiculous but I have arrived at such conclusion based on analogy of using tennis rackets where rubber dampener placed across the string absorbs high frequency vibrations which exert stress on the tennis elbow.

Can I be onto something or please help me to refute it so that I can have clear mind it can be something else?
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  #166  
Old 03.04.2010, 20:21
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

The gloves have some little cushioning but the lack of it would not be what causes your tennis elbow pains.

I'd say, it is more the pressure you are putting in your hands.

When you ride a bike your weight is distributed on the 3 contact points.

Your feet, your @ss, your hands.

This weight distribution not only has to be balanced, but also dynamic.

Means, that if you ride longer distances in the same position it would put more strain on your contact points.

I would say one of the causes is probably the fact that you ride long distances on "flat bar" bike that has only one ( and IMO unnatural) position and you dont move enough.

That is the reason why road bikes have "drop bars" those curvy handlebars.

It allows you to put your hands in different positions for different kinds of efforts.

Also on longer rides you can have different hand positions for comfort reasons.

Drop bars come in many different shapes to suit different rider preferences.



Drop bars are of an sportive kind, that allow you to put yoursel more down aerodinamically and then for that same reason are probanbly not necesarily suitable for a more vertical sitting riding position like for city bikes or touring bikes.

For that there is an style of handlebars, that usually come in "Treking" bikes, that are curved upwards. If you don't want drop bars maybe those can also be good for you



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  #167  
Old 13.04.2010, 17:57
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

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I'm not sure if it hasn't been covered earlier before but here I have questions to cycling gurus...

Since I started clocking the km's back in my usual rate 100km per week on the road bike, I have noticed significant increase in fatigue in my tennis elbow which anyway has already been knackered in the past by regular tennis sessions and weightlifting. The pain just came back recently. So here is my theory but I might be wrong, which says that I do not use cycling gloves/mittens which significantly absorb all sorts of vibrations coming from terrain irregularities of the road, be it bike alone or any other sort . Could it be also position of arms on the handlebars and etc.

Well, this might sound radiculous but I have arrived at such conclusion based on analogy of using tennis rackets where rubber dampener placed across the string absorbs high frequency vibrations which exert stress on the tennis elbow.

Can I be onto something or please help me to refute it so that I can have clear mind it can be something else?

Use your core. If you have a strong core, you should be holding yourself on your bike with your core muscles and the hands rest lightly on the bars, thus very little stress on the hands and arms.
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  #168  
Old 13.04.2010, 18:02
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

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Use your core. If you have a strong core, you should be holding yourself on your bike with your core muscles and the hands rest lightly on the bars, thus very little stress on the hands and arms.
But then more stress on your bum. Your call
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  #169  
Old 21.04.2010, 23:13
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

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I'm not sure if it hasn't been covered earlier before but here I have questions to cycling gurus...

Since I started clocking the km's back in my usual rate 100km per week on the road bike, I have noticed significant increase in fatigue in my tennis elbow which anyway has already been knackered in the past by regular tennis sessions and weightlifting. The pain just came back recently. So here is my theory but I might be wrong, which says that I do not use cycling gloves/mittens which significantly absorb all sorts of vibrations coming from terrain irregularities of the road, be it bike alone or any other sort . Could it be also position of arms on the handlebars and etc.

Well, this might sound radiculous but I have arrived at such conclusion based on analogy of using tennis rackets where rubber dampener placed across the string absorbs high frequency vibrations which exert stress on the tennis elbow.

Can I be onto something or please help me to refute it so that I can have clear mind it can be something else?
You might also want to try a pair of clip-on tri/aerobars, which would put the pressure on the forearms and support you skeletally rather than muscularly if you're on the drops or hoods.
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  #170  
Old 22.04.2010, 10:30
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

I took a few days break from cycling this week as last week was quite intensive with almost 200km altogether plus few hours of tennis. My lower back muscles and calves were screaming in pain but surprisingly my arms are getting used to it better. I also realized that the pressure in bike's tires dropped a bit and the ride is softer now, I would say ideal. Previously I pumped the tires up to their max and although I could fly on my bike but somehow I felt more vibrations. If I see a pair of cyclists gloves I will get them. Also I think when I try to move the weight more towards the seat-post and thus use the core more.

Another quick question, the guy in bike shop made a short inspection and quoted me for major service i.e. chain replacement, both tires, break adjustment and lubricating c.a. CHF200. It sounds a lot to me and I was wondering if I couldn't DIY. He measured how loose the chain was and suggested to come around May for the major service. I clocked up to date 2600km from the day I bought this bike last year, rear tire seems to have no thread at all but front one ist still half way gone. I do not feel any significant change how all the cogs and gears work, they seem still pretty smooth to me and I lubricated the chain with some all-kind of weather type oil from a bike shop which helped to get rid of little rust and screeching. I have got all the tools needed and I already can adjust breaks

I know for guys like ChrisW and SL who built their own bikes it might sound like piece of cake. Would you replace the chain now or wait a bit longer and just do the basics i.e. replace both tires, replace and adjust the breaks, lubricate?
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  #171  
Old 22.04.2010, 11:45
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

chains, cassettes, chainrings, brake pads, tyres and cables are consumables that would need eventually to be changed.

When your chain is worn and enlongated it will accelerate the wear on the cassette and chainrings.

If you wait long to change your chain you'll also wear faster your cassette that costs more than the chain.

However some people ride the bikes for ages on the same chain and cassette.

I think you have an 8 speed drive train isn't it ?

the chain is somewhat not expensive, cost some 30 CHF ( shops can charge 40 for it ) and you can change it yourself easily with a chain tool that costs some CHF 20.-

Tyres for a touring bike should cost on around CHF 50 ( shops would charge 60 for them ) each

so there is CHF 160.- on materials and the guy is making CHF 40.- for the work wich is fair for swiss standards.

But you could also buy the parts invest on the tools and learn how to do it.

In my experience tyres and chains could last years or only months, depending of the mileage you do
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  #172  
Old 22.04.2010, 11:56
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

After 2600km, I wouldn't be surprised if a cheap rear tire is worn out, a more durable one would last longer. The front tire has far less weight on it, and so wears much more slowly, and I wouldn't expect that it needs replacing yet. The front tire is actually more important when it comes to high-speed handling, so if only changing one tire, it is best to have the newest one on the front. Therefore, some people would recommend putting the new tire on the front and rotate the half-used tire to the rear. If you can change an inner tube yourself then you should be able to do this job yourself.

2600km is quite early for a chain to be worn out, especially for an 8-speed chain, which tend to last longer, I doubt it needs replacing yet, but there are ways to measure this yourself (google it), and it's not too hard to replace it yourself (and it's a good thing to learn how to do) - lots of videos online.

Re-adjustment of brakes and gears and a good lubrication are all good regular maintenance practices, so are certainly worthwhile.
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  #173  
Old 22.04.2010, 11:59
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

You can go and checkout this tool... it shows you if a chain is worn or not.
I found it really useful, but it goes for about 30 CHF in the shops.
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  #174  
Old 22.04.2010, 13:42
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

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You can go and checkout this tool... it shows you if a chain is worn or not.
I found it really useful, but it goes for about 30 CHF in the shops.

No need to spend 30 CHF for that tool.

The standard and free procedure for measuring chain wear is to hold a ruler against the chain. With 1/2-inch spacing chain, 24 links should measure 12 inches new; if 24 links measures 12-1/8 inches, the chain has worn about 1% and it is time to throw it away.
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  #175  
Old 22.04.2010, 17:01
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

jacek I found for you the parts at very good price, at the Urs shop in Rüti

8 speed chain CHF 15.- ( buy two and keep the other as spare )

These chains come with a "powerlink", that doesn't need an special tool to set them, but you will need it anyway to cut it to size... I could help you with that.

http://www.ricardo.ch/kaufen/sports/...v/an603475516/

Schwalbe Marathon Racer 700x35c CHF 36 each

http://www.ricardo.ch/kaufen/sports/...v/an586540996/

Call him, maybe he has in stock the Marathon Plus that will last you a veeeery long time , he sells them for CHF 45.-

Bike Raptor,
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  #176  
Old 22.04.2010, 20:21
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

Thanks for so many answers and tips. I do not ride my bike very aggresively and I think I will stay with my existing chain slightly longer and replace the tyres only after say 3000km which I can assure you is gonna happen within next 1-2 months unless something unexpected will happen first. I think both must go and I will fit brand new ones. As for the tools for measuring how loose the chain is, I like SL's simple method with a ruler. I have seen the previous gadget in other guy's hand and he mentioned that I could come for chain replacement anytime but I guess it's his business and he has to keep it going. IMHO bike is still in ideal running condition just the tyres wear out as usual.
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  #177  
Old 10.05.2010, 02:21
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

Excellent thread. Anyway I need to ask one question: There are any papers needed (besides vigette) for carrying a bike in Swiss ?
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  #178  
Old 10.05.2010, 12:56
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

The vignette is only needed if you are a resident (i.e., are living here permanently with a permit or citizenship) in Switzerland ("Swiss" is not a country, please call it Switzerland). No other paperwork is needed.

BTW, I suggest that you ride your bike instead of carrying it - that tends to make it easier.
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  #179  
Old 10.05.2010, 16:24
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

Thank you.

As far as I can see, the national cycling network is not designed for mtbs (with some exceptions, of course). For that reason, I think a road bike will suite better the long rides as well as commuting. Also, consider that many roads are very hilly in, the lightweight road bike will be a good choice (in fact, better than any other).
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  #180  
Old 10.05.2010, 17:02
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Re: Cycling in Switzerland

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Thank you.

As far as I can see, the national cycling network is not designed fore mtbs (with some exceptions, of course). For that reason, I think a road bike will suite better the long rides as well as commuting. Also, consider that many roads are very hilly in, the lightweight road bike will be a good choice (in fact, better than any other).
For MT-biking stick to the forests.
I don`t agree, I belive a good adjusted MTB with ideal non profile tires is much better. Wider MTB tires are a must have thing for non sealed roads and if you want to drive over tram rails safer.
Many people buy a too big framed road bikes where balls get jammed very often
Of course, if you want to travel far with high pressure +10 bar tires you should get a race bike like set up, with them you feel every ant you run over. But i don`t think you can get a bike which will suit long distance travel and every day and picnic cross country.
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