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  1. #1
    Old School
    Reputation: Joe Steel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003

    What did YOU Learn This Year?

    December 31st -- a time for reflection

    I had a few two-wheeled epiphanies this year I'd like to share:

    Latex tubes are cool
    Yep -- been cycling for years (ok, decades) and never tried a latex tube. I picked up a used bike recently that came with a latex tube installed in the back -- otherwise I would never have had the opportunity. I would never have bought one. Well, I gotta tell ya' this thing rocks. Virtually say good-bye to pinch flats. They do lose a bit of air between rides, but the thing holds up great at low pressure. If you're having trouble with pinch flats, or want to run low pressure (say, for that rigid hardtail), think about trying a latex tube. You wont be disappointed.

    I finally broke down. As a family man, I picked up a road bike out of necessity. Some days, you want to get a ride in -- but you need to be somewhere. The reality is, it's pretty hard to get a mountain bike ride in and be home by 9 or 10am. With country roads just minutes away, I can get out with relatively few cars and pound out 2 hrs of non-stop riding and be home in time to take care of family business -- fully satiated.
    On top of that, the roadbike community has killer organized century rides that have guided me through new places. I've met new people, knocked out a hundred miles, and got a T shirt. Now I actually look for excuses to ride the road bike -- something I never thought would happen. That sweet, svelt, sexy carbon fiber hottie in the stable has me feelin' ten years younger. So, expand your horizons. Share your love. Have more than one mistress.

    When I'm feelin' kinky I break out a singlespeed. They're cheap, fun, low maintenance..and they're friggin' cool!
    My singlespeeds have made rides that are routine a challenge. They're stealthly quiet and no nonsense. I have fully rigid vintage beauties that I've converted to SS and I have a SS specific beaut as well. Now, when it's time to mountain bike, I only want to grab one of the singlespeeds. It's like crack. Need a winter project? Do a Convert -- become a convert!

    Choices keep the fire burnin'

    So, in short, this year I learned
    1) Latex tubes are good
    2) I love my road bike
    3) I love my singlespeeds, and
    4) having choices has kept the passion higher than ever.

    So, what have you learned this year?

    Cheers my brothers and sisters~

  2. #2
    I throw poo
    Reputation: lovemonkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    This year I really got back into biking after having been out of it for a long time. I also quit smoking, and moved from FL to VA.

    1) Living in a flat state wasn't all bad
    2) Passion is better than addiction
    3) Mountains hurt going up and going down
    4) MTBR is handy to have around
    Dang it, now I'm running a coolness deficit for sure.

  3. #3
    Reputation: notaknob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004

    Things to live by

    1. Riding home takes two water bottles.
    2. Sand sucks.
    3. When your battery dies, your going to flat.
    4. Just when you finally can clear an obstacale, some dick-head sanitizes the trail.
    5. Two for a dollar, three for a buck.
    6. NM drivers suck.
    7. The downhill from the Heidleberg castle isn't legal
    8. The singletrack in Neustadt and Bad Durkheim IS legal.
    9. Owning a home means you always have a chore.
    10. You need to boil at least 90 minutes for all grain.
    Slow-core. -.. .-. .. -. -.- .... --- -- . -... .-. . .--

  4. #4
    I <3 29ers
    Reputation: AndrewTO's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Oh, interesting thread!

    What did I learn? LOTS! Coming back to it after an 8-year hiatus....

    1) I learned about MTBR - that's my number one, but it also ties-in with ...
    2) there's a lot of great people here (and also locally! met some great people)
    3) while i'm not a half-bad (or is it half-good?) rider I always find ways to improve, even if only in small ways
    4) telescopic fork's "ain't that bad"
    5) working on bike's hasn't changed in the past 15 years, despite the "technology" - it's still easy
    6) while biking isn't as expensive as car's (as a "hobby", or call it whatever you want) this depends on you as an individual. I'm easy, not cheap!
    I ..... need ..... DIRT!!!!!

    ... and cookies.

  5. #5
    wg is offline
    Fermented Grain Sampler
    Reputation: wg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003

    1- Singlespeeding 29er is a blast. I test rode/played on different ones over the year and now have one.
    2- Riding with my kids has been great. The oldest got a real 24" and is learning to tear it up now. The 4 yr old will follow suit in '06.
    3- I need to ride more. I hate knowing that the trail obstacles (hill, tech moves etc) are often not clearable because of my lack of saddle time and whatever mental block I have.
    4- Doing your own work on bike is a good thing but its nice to have a good LBS just in case....
    5- Stone brewery doesn't make any bad beer.
    6- Ride with better riders. (every year this is a good one)
    Last edited by wg; 12-31-2005 at 01:00 PM.
    Don't harsh my mello

  6. #6
    Currently in Exile
    Reputation: Frozenspokes's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    1. You don't have to hammer all of the time!
    2. Put about a 3 to 6 degree outslope when bench cutting trail
    3. Trail building is VERY hard work
    4. Ride with your kids! Let them decide how much they want to ride, and what they want to ride. They may surprise you, and both of you will go home with a grin.
    5. I like to stop for ice cream after a ride too!

    Happy New Year!
    "There are those who would say there's something pathological about the need to ride, and they're probably on to something. I'd wager though that most of the society-approved compulsions leave deeper scars in the psyche than a need to go and ride a bicycle on a mountain." Cam McRea

  7. #7
    Hup, Hup
    Reputation: cbuchanan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    1. Helping younger riders learn the sport is very gratifying
    2. It's always good to have friends close by when your light batteries die at 4:00 am
    3. Finding good help for a trail crew can be difficult but rewarding
    '06 Cannondale Cross
    '08 Cannondale Cross
    '08 Cannondale Scalpel Team
    '07 Cannondale SystemSix Team

  8. #8
    Now broadcasting from CO
    Reputation: PAmtbiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005

    ... and if we just ... I'll play...

    1. If you can see the tree at eye level it is already too late
    2. Riding alone is good sometimes, but riding with a friend, even one who is not a hard core MTBer is excelent too.
    3. Take out your anger by repeatedly trying extremely hard tech sections until you clean them... you will feel better about yourself.
    4. Use rides w/ the gf as intervals... sprint up the hill then come back downto where she is, turn around and repeat until she is at the top.
    5. Doughnuts are not good 6 hr race fuel (or alternatively: sugar highs suck when racing)
    6. Attack on the climbs cause when you do you smoke 'em.

    That is the extent of my knowledge...
    Brought to you by rocks.

  9. #9
    jrm is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jrm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004

    Lets see..

    1. You cant let work take over your life....
    2. Ride your own ride and have fun
    3. 5 man 24 teams are tough..
    4. Cars ARE evil (falling on asphalt and steel sucks)
    5. a mcd's belly bomb is good for 4 hours on the trail

    Oh yeah? ...wait till next year..

    Happy new year...
    Last edited by jrm; 12-31-2005 at 05:29 PM.

  10. #10
    govt kontrakt projkt mgr
    Reputation: ArmySlowRdr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003

    how to split an AVI file
    how to use Pinnacle 9
    how to take slightly better pics w/ my rebel
    ..and probably every week I learn something new and useful consumer electronic/computer-technolgy wise.
    that the eastern culture is not all against all US people and all our ways
    that I still think I'm a youngster.

    not learned:

    how to permanently keep off a yo yo diet.
    how to be diplomatic 100% of the time with superiority.
    how not to cramp after 40 to 70 miles.

  11. #11
    34N 118W
    Reputation: Hollywood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003

    Top 10

    top 10 things The Media taught me in 2005:

    1) my leaders read my email because they care.
    2) camping with cowboys may get me more than I bargained for.
    3) I should call my doctor to see if Celexa is for me.
    4) if I become famous, the judge will most likely dismiss my case.
    5) I'm gay because I listen to Coldplay.
    6) carbon fiber is better, lighter, stronger, and sexier all around. I should buy some.
    7) If I have 4" of travel, I need 5". If I have 5", I need 6". If I have...
    8) I need to pay more attention to Nick & Jessica's marital status.
    9) I can "put the fork in" 29er bikes. (thanks MBA)
    10) saying "Merry Christmas" hurts others.

    My personal tip for 2006: You better lose yourself in the music, the moment. You own it, you better never let it go. You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow. This opportunity comes once in a lifetime, yo.

    champagne wishes & caviar dreams,
    Last edited by Hollywood; 12-31-2005 at 08:06 PM. Reason: spelling is hard.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: pacman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004

    1) Hollywood always entertains.
    2) A good friend is better than a good ride.
    3) Biking is 90% mental, but that other 10% is really painful.
    4) Use the lock valve on the Camelbak.
    5) Pee downwind.

  13. #13
    mtbr dismember
    Reputation: Wherewolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004

    At least three things

    1. I can ride solo at night. I discovered this after imjps fell and broke his collarbone half way through our night ride and he refused to continue on.
    2. The Stumpjumper is a lot more fun to ride than the Epic.
    3. I can not ride three times in one week. I kind of knew this but I tried it this week for the first time since double knee surgery more than three years ago. The knees are killing me!
    Last edited by Wherewolf; 12-31-2005 at 07:50 PM.

  14. #14
    life is a barrel o'fun
    Reputation: Christine's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    1) There is no cure for upgradeitis- sorta like a cold, it has to be waited out.
    2) Wet cement does not look like wet cement if you're riding directly into the sun.
    3) Never test-ride a bike while dressed in a suit (ref. #2).
    4) Hangovers now require one full day of recovery and aren't worth lost riding time.
    5) Use the absolute minimum required amount of denture tablets for bladder cleaning.
    6) It really is amazing how so many people can go through life without a bike. Baffling.
    7) A tidy car isn't worth the trouble when the bike is the main passenger.

    For 2006:
    1) Survive another 24hr race (at least three laps w/o wanting to die.)
    2) Get to at least one new riding destination.
    3) Convince a certain tandem owner to let me try riding it on a trail.
    4) Convince somebody to try #3 with me. Maybe even a newbie
    5) Give SS a try for one full ride (and not quit at the first hill.)
    6) Pre-qualify potential friends/employers/suitors for mtb tolerance.
    7) Hope that OLN runs footage of Lance on a mtb (preferably shirtless)
    "We sat outside the dentist, tooting a horn on the guy's bike."-overheard in the Underground

  15. #15
    Reputation: Rainman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004

    Good job! Lessons learned..and re-learned...

    1: Cars really really are a necessary EVIL.

    2: Time accellerates exponentially once you pass your 40th birthday.

    3: The older you get, the more you appreciate simplicity.

    4: Global Warming is a reality that will only get worse.

    5: Money, Power and Sex runs this world.

    6: It is possible to be fitter at 60 than you were at 40.

    7: 29'ers are the best thing to happen to off road bikes in a looong time.

    8: Singlespeeds *are* harder.

    9: Your family and loved ones are the MOST important things in your life.

    10: Riding, building, wrenching and playing around with bicycles is fantastic fun.

    Happy New Year to everyone.

    It is inevitable ...

  16. #16
    Portland, OR
    Reputation: todd_freeride's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    good thread.

    things I have learned this season would be

    even if the you dont think you're going to make the obstacle your trying, atleast try it, bail ...whatever, then atleast you've tryed it instead of just looking at it.

    Never give in, never give up.
    Try your best, even if everyone is still way better than you.
    Ride your bike, doesnt matter how you have it set up, as long as your on it. ( people in my area are bike snobs )
    when your out there on the trail, or in the mountains or wharever. Just have fun
    [SIZE="4"]Ibex bikes[/SIZE]

    2007 Ibex Trophy SS
    2006 Jamis Komodo 3.0
    2006 Ibex Zone FR-1
    2004 Special-Ed P.2 A.1

  17. #17
    schipperke momma
    Reputation: bergziege's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    1. When you snap off your presta stem, apparently you can still put air in, you just can't get it back out.
    2. Speed defies gravity, but would someone please tell my break lever fingers that.
    3. Buying a house was easier than I thought. (gulp! what have i gotten myself into)
    4. Watch were you stick the lube.
    5. Never listen to the car dealership.
    6. One day with a great man is still better than 900 days with a mediocer one.
    7. Let your Yes mean Yes and your No mean No. (this one's harder than you think)
    8. I am not the person I thought I was at age twenty. Thank God because that person was an unknowing fool. At least now I am a self aware fool. I kind of miss that younger fool though; what I've gained in thoughtfulness I seem to have lost in boldness.
    9. Having weaknesses is okay. Having needs is what brings people closer togeather as they share what they have with one another, whether it's on the trail, wrenching the bike, or over a cup of coffee.
    10. Well I don't have a tenth one. Darnit, I only learned nine things this year. Geez.
    I've defected. Viva la pavement.

  18. #18
    Ride it like you stole it
    Join Date
    Apr 2004

    Getting Older

    - My 30's are better than my 20's were
    - Hangovers are bad, no matter how much fun you had
    - Mountain biking has been a great investment in my life
    - Buying a house is a pain in the A@@
    - You will never be the fastest rider on the trail
    - The U.S. should take lessons from Europe on building city bike lanes

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005

    Smile This is an excellent thread!

    Some of the things I learned last year:

    How not to say that's the last patch of sand or the last "big" hill - how do you think I got my name??!!

    That if you're a woman racing the 50 - 55 category it's a blast to beat ALL the younger ones starting with the 17 & up category!

    That it's more fun to fall in cryptobiotic soil (sorry!) than slickrock!! That's your first clue I ride alot in the desert!

    How not to curse too loudly going down rocky downhill courses on a hardtail in the wind.

    That going through brush might not be as fun for other people.

    And last but not least - that I might have the least expensive bike at a race but I'm having the most fun!!!

    Happy New Year!! My bike is calling me..............I'm off to ride!!

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    It's all about weight distribution and momentum. Figure those 2 things out and the rest is easy.

  21. #21
    Slow riding mama's boy
    Reputation: Billy Zoom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003

    What I learned this year.

    MTB related:

    1. Sometimes "upgrading" makes you very unhappy. (How could a $500 used Gunnar Ruffian be the best bike I ever owned? I miss it!)
    2. Very few upgrades make a significant difference in the riding experience.
    3. I handle corners worse than a lifted 4X4, driven by Rosie O Donnell and with Star Jones as a passenger, with 2 refrigerators in the truck bed.
    4. My bike can usually handle much more than I give it credit for. My brain is the main limitation.
    5. Singlespeeding is a blast, but I can't do it full time. I miss gears too.
    6. I like mountain biking much more than road biking, though all bikes are cool.
    7. Many of the riders I see on the trail are half my age, so I should give myself a little slack.
    8. Even when I was their age I still would have sucked, so I deserve no slack.
    9. Air forks will never satisfy me.
    10. I love the ride of a good steel frame.

    Non MTB:
    1. You really have very little control over many of the things in your life that you think you do.
    2. Divorce brings out the very worst in people, despite how you hope things might go.
    3. Falling in love never loses its magic.
    4. Follow your instincts.
    5. Intentions aren't very meaningful without action.
    6. Live in the moment.

    Last edited by Billy Zoom; 01-03-2006 at 11:45 AM. Reason: Computer needs an exorcism

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    1. A very used carbon bike is expensive, but worth every penny
    2. Carbon does not make you faster, but the ride is more fun
    3. A carbon addiction will make you poor
    4. A road bike can be a good investment
    5. 12 stitches in your ankle July 5th will ruin 6 weeks of riding

    1. Working for a non-profit and having a carbon addiction will break you
    2. Some people and other things in life will go away and you will have no control over it
    3. Taking an Organic Chemistry class for fun is a really dumb idea
    4. Always have another plan
    5. You really can work through anything


  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mindhole's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004

    Thanks for sharing, everyone... here's mine

    I learned in 'O5

    1. Nothing matters more than your health. Coming back after a horrible back injury to place 4th in the local mtb race series felt really, really good.
    2. Getting abruptly dumped by the love of your life really hurts. But as long as you can ride, it's truly okay.
    3. Grab life by the handlebars, and be sure that you're the one steering it.
    4. Ride somewhere new as often as possible.
    5. Let your legs do the talking, not your mouth.
    6. Trust that you can ride obstacles that scare you.
    7. A life without regular riding partners is a bummer.

    In '06 I'm sure I'll learn a bunch of things I'm not even aware of yet, but I'm hoping to:

    1. Clean a local tough trail all in one go
    2. Travel to awesome riding destinations
    3. Win a race in my category and upgrade
    4. Create that group of rock-solid riding peeps that I've been looking for
    5. Regain my faith in the world of dating -- cheeseball, but true!

    I hope the coming year is great for all of you!
    If everything seems under control, you're just not going fast enough. -- Mario Andretti

  24. #24
    Formerly DMR For Life
    Reputation: Full Mountain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    1. Never pull a manual without a finger on the brake lever (it hurts)
    2. Never missed the last steps on a ladder (it hurts even more)
    3. Ride Ride lots its great for stress relief
    4. Riding is better than staring at your computer all day
    5. Don't work if you don't have too they'll be lots of time for that later
    6. Play harder than you work
    7. If you get injured at least have a good story about it
    8. Free Money is a good thing and it buys bike parts

  25. #25
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    These are bike and non-bike.

    1. I am learning to follow my instincts.
    2. Transition Preston medium size frames fit very small. My Preston is a tad small for my tastes.
    3. I will never own a set of older Hope M4 brakes again.
    4. Mtbr is by far my favorite mountain bike site.
    5. Women are difficult most of the time, but I still dig them.
    6. Volunteering can be a fun and rewarding activity.
    7. There are more important things than money.

    Have a good 06 everyone.

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