Two common problems, what are your experiences?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Two common problems, what are your experiences?

    Had a good ride ride this weekend but tore up my shins pretty good as well as got a stick/log through the derailleur.

    After dislodging the stick the derailliuer was clearly bent and the chain was jacked up. I was able to bend the hanger back enough to get the chain to stay in one of the middle gears so I just finished up the ride without shifting.

    I took it to the lbs and they replaced the hanger and it works now but the derailluer is clearly bent a little. It shifts through all the gears but is not smooth in the two smallest cogs. It's a trek marlin with a SRAM x4. The lbs did not seem to think it would be worth upgrading and to just replace it with another x4.

    Thoughts?

    How many of you ride with shin guards? If so what kind? Anyone wear soccer style guards?

  2. #2
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    What is causing your shins to get cut up. Brush on the trail? You can maintain the trail you ride by throwing some time into the group that cares for the trail or just take tools with you and trim.
    Shop for a good price on an X7 or 9 derailleur or Type 2 if it fits.

  3. #3
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    My shins usually get scraped up when my feet slip off the pedals...But it doesn't happen enough for me to want any shin guards.
    "Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up." Galatians 6:9

  4. #4
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    Pedals and just happening to fall into brush off the trail. Just seems like I'm often cut up on my shins.

  5. #5
    T.W.O.
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    If its time to change the rear der then you can just go for x7 or x9 why not?

    Shin guard? I tried both soccer guards and hard shell and soft shell guards. Soccer is a bit too short but it is light and comfortable. The bike specific guard are more expensive and a bit hot but offer more protection on the trail than soccer guards.

    I also like the 661 veggie wraps but could not find a good deal on it yet

  6. #6
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    This might be a stupid question.....but if you wrecked a derailleur and had a powerlink on the chain and a chain tool; could you theoretically take the derailleur off, shorten the chain, and ride out single speed? Or is that easier said then done?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by hankscorpio View Post
    This might be a stupid question.....but if you wrecked a derailleur and had a powerlink on the chain and a chain tool; could you theoretically take the derailleur off, shorten the chain, and ride out single speed? Or is that easier said then done?
    If you have a chain tool you could. You may not have a great chain-line on whatever gear setup you chose, but it should get you home.

    If your pedals are getting your shins, have you considered clipless? I cut my shins some, but I consider them biking honor badges. Too hot in Alabama to want to wear shinguards, so not something I've considered.

    Second the other posters. Get a used or new old stock rear der. on eBay or the classified. It'll be cheap.
    - Cody

    This is your life and it's ending one minute at a time.

  8. #8
    gran jefe
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    Quote Originally Posted by hankscorpio View Post
    This might be a stupid question.....but if you wrecked a derailleur and had a powerlink on the chain and a chain tool; could you theoretically take the derailleur off, shorten the chain, and ride out single speed? Or is that easier said then done?
    you did the right thing.

  9. #9
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    Are you riding stock "plastic" pedals and tennis shoes? Is the ball of your foot not directly over the spinal of the pedal? Either, or both, of those scenarios will cause your outcome.

    Wellgo B184 Flat Pedals | Wellgo | Brand | www.PricePoint.com

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    No, YOU don't understand. You're making an ass of yourself for all of eternity.

  10. #10
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    Only time I ever had a problem scraping up my legs was when I used to ride flat pedals....foot slipping off the pedals causing it to spin backwards into my calf. At least for me, it would need to be a strange sequence of events for my shins to get sliced up. Problem solved once switching to clipless and after the learning curve.

    Your situation sounds like your just getting banged up from aggressive riding and a little bit of bad luck. It's never a bad idea to wear protective equipment..by all means go for it!

    As for your bent der....don't feel obligated to stick with the x4 model. It's your bike and can go with whatever you can afford. I'd personally go with either x7 or x9 since its not a huge price difference, a little more heavy duty, and might possibly have a slight performance increase. Rear mechs are somewhat universal and if you ever get a new frame you can swap it over. It wouldn't make sense to throw a full XO/XX group on the frame, but I'd still upgrade to the best you can afford as things break...it happens.

  11. #11
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    Thanks for the advice. I'm riding with Forte Convert cheese graters. Seriously if you bump into them walking the bike it cuts you. I think I really just had a stretch of bad luck the other day with what I went through, caught a few unlucky thorns. The pedal cuts I can deal with because it has much better traction then my old platforms.

  12. #12
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    Clipless pedals are a good thing!

    My wife has X5 components on her bike and they shift really smooth. I don't know how much punishment they can take but they work great.

  13. #13
    Rollin' a fatty
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    Get descent pedals and shoes (5.10) and you shin problem will almost disappear.

    The X4 can be upgraded with X5, X7, X9 or X0, is up to you how much you want to spend.

  14. #14
    fly on the wall
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    I can give some advice on the your feet slipping off the pedals, and you'll be happy to hear that you don't have to go clipless if you don't want to. Unless you want to...in which case, go right ahead.

    I see it more as a technique thing over an equipment thing. To help your feet stay on the pedals through rough terrain better, relax your body more. Especially your ankles and legs. Try keeping your knees bent and your weight over the pedals. The bent knees allow for the best suspension - your legs - to absorb bumps. Standing your weight over the pedals gives your shoes the best grip it can have with the pedals. And keep a soft grip on the bars to allow your arms to absorb the front vibrations.

    The moment you tense up, you can no longer absorb bumps, and they will quickly bounce your foot off. Before buying stuff, at least try being looser first, and see if that helps.
    ~Always avoid alliteration.

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  15. #15
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    Pedals scrape shins when they slip off the front/toe of your foot. If you are pedaling with your toes, you might slip. If the ball of your foot is on the spindle, you are less likely to slip.
    No, YOU don't understand. You're making an ass of yourself for all of eternity.

  16. #16
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    Heels down over the rocky stuff will keep you from bouncing off your pedals. Long socks help but do not prevent during the learning timeframe. If you are falling off the bike then genuine knee pads are in order. The Troy Lee pull over (just reviewed on MTBR) are great. Very comfortable and cool.

    The back of my calves look like I was tortured... Chalk it up to learning. I very rarely have an issue now.

    Oh, and 5 10s are over rated. A good "skate" shoe is half the price and grips equally as well, are lighter weight, and generally as durable.

  17. #17
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    Wear motocross socks until you get better. Pull up to the knee... You will feel goofy but that will only encourage you to improve faster.

  18. #18
    fly on the wall
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    It's also worth saying that if you're falling off the trail so often, then dial things down a little. Don't feel the need to go too big too quickly. Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither will your skill sets be. Slow down, and master parts of the trail a little at a time.
    ~Always avoid alliteration.

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  19. #19
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    Ride clipless pedals to avoid your shins getting shredded. And ride SS to avoid getting things stuck in the derailleur and/or braking it! Both problems solved, and you'll end up spending less!
    SS ==> Nut up or Shut up!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cormac View Post
    Ride clipless pedals to avoid your shins getting shredded. And ride SS to avoid getting things stuck in the derailleur and/or braking it! Both problems solved, and you'll end up spending less!
    Yup, clipless will definitely prevent shredded calves and shins!

    Of course you'll exchange them for shredded knees, lol, for when you're learning clipless and keep falling over. At least that was my learning curve.

    Heck, I STILL fall over once in a while, and I've been going clipless going on a year now. Of courseI'm not that coordinated and something of a clutz.

    My left knee is shredded right now as a result of falling over on Sunday...and I wasn't even on the trail. Did it on the road on my 'cross bike. I was riding very slow in circles while talking to a group of riders I encountered by the beach, and I wasn't thinking about the wicked toe overlap my bike has...I just happened to time my downstroke with the wheel being turned sharply and my foot hit the front tire and stopped the bike cold and I went down like a ton of bricks.

    Other than the bloody knee, the major damage was to my pride...that really made me feel like an ass!


    SS....I'm unconvinced on that...no drivetrain to break is nice, but I feel like it would be a PITA in really technical terrain and I'd be walking it half the time on the climbs.

  21. #21
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    One of the reasons I converted to singlespeed was that I got tired of bent derailer hangers.

    I also went with clipless pedals but I'm not sure if the original primary reason was ensuring I don't fall off of the pedals, or maximising available power with no low gears helping me on the uphills. Now I'm just used to them.

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  22. #22
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    Two common problems, what are your experiences?

    Quote Originally Posted by StuntmanMike View Post
    Yup, clipless will definitely prevent shredded calves and shins!

    Of course you'll exchange them for shredded knees, lol, for when you're learning clipless and keep falling over. At least that was my learning curve.

    Heck, I STILL fall over once in a while, and I've been going clipless going on a year now. Of courseI'm not that coordinated and something of a clutz.

    My left knee is shredded right now as a result of falling over on Sunday...and I wasn't even on the trail. Did it on the road on my 'cross bike. I was riding very slow in circles while talking to a group of riders I encountered by the beach, and I wasn't thinking about the wicked toe overlap my bike has...I just happened to time my downstroke with the wheel being turned sharply and my foot hit the front tire and stopped the bike cold and I went down like a ton of bricks.

    Other than the bloody knee, the major damage was to my pride...that really made me feel like an ass!


    SS....I'm unconvinced on that...no drivetrain to break is nice, but I feel like it would be a PITA in really technical terrain and I'd be walking it half the time on the climbs.
    SS will make you faster in the technical and stronger on the climbs. It's good technique to carry your momentum. SSing reenforces this and you wind up improving your fitness and you speed.

    It's a simpler bike with less parts to break.


    The real answer to the op is: a stick in the derailer is part of the sport. It happens to all of us. Last year I replaced my rear dr after long and faithful service. I caught a stick on my second ride on the new one. In less than a week, I replaced 1 hanger and 2 derailers. It happens a lot less if you stay on the trail.


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  23. #23
    local trails rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken in KC View Post
    a stick in the derailer is part of the sport.
    Some call them "upgrade sticks".

    When you get one, you need to buy/install a new part. Frequently, people buy something they consider better than the old one.

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by perttime View Post
    Some call them "upgrade sticks".

    When you get one, you need to buy/install a new part. Frequently, people buy something they consider better than the old one.
    Some people may. I'm at the upper end of the upgrade path. So they're just expensive hazards to me.
    JPark - 3.5- don't listen to dremer

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by perttime View Post
    One of the reasons I converted to singlespeed was that I got tired of bent derailer hangers.

    I also went with clipless pedals but I'm not sure if the original primary reason was ensuring I don't fall off of the pedals, or maximising available power with no low gears helping me on the uphills. Now I'm just used to them.
    I'm convinced that without clipless pedals, SS would be next to impossible! Unless you ride very flat terrain.
    SS ==> Nut up or Shut up!

  26. #26
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    For lots of people SS with flat pedals is quite possible. Maybe needs a little lower gearing.
    Last year, I put my spiky flats on my rigid 26er for a while, and the uphills were harder. Also, I didn't have the skills to be quite stabile on them over the washboard sections.

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  27. #27
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    SRAM X4 maybe isn't as light as most more expensive derailleurs or maybe even as smooth but it does one thing better than all of them. It's pocket friendly to replace and for me that's very important. That's the reason I'm staying with Alivio (an X4 from Shimano).

  28. #28
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    I rode my 26" 27spd ht for 4 years on platforms with five tens. Recently got a rigid 29er SS and ride it...on platforms, with five tens. Terrain here isn't flat- some rolling and a lot of up-and-down river valleys. No problems. Do what works for you. It's your thing; nobody else's.

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