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Experiment: What difference does the bike make?

CCSCCS Posts: 53
I thought I would share the results of a very unscientific experiment that I carried out last week…

As the forecast was for loads of rain on Tuesday, and the roads and bike paths get pretty slippery around us, I decided to dig out the old mountain bike for my commute to work rather than using my road bike. The bike is about 10 years old, and feels like it is made from lead (or something similarly heavy); knobbly off road tyres; front suspension; suspension seat post; rack for baby seat on back…(you get the general picture).

The route is my regular commute (just short of 10 miles with a few hills) that I generally do at not far off race pace (or as fast as I can go with a heavy laptop on my back).

On the mountain bike, this took 34.35 mins (and a bit longer on the way home, which it always does for some reason).

I then repeated the journey on Thursday at the same time of day (so very similar traffic conditions) on my road bike (bottom of the range Specialized Allez) – which took 30.25 mins.

It’s nice to know that having splashed out on a new bike this year, it does actually make a difference!

Other conclusions (in no specific order)
- I really missed having clipless pedals and proper cycling shoes when on the MTB
- The brakes on a road bike are crap compared to sturdy v-brakes on a mountain bike (or perhaps I need to learn to be less of a wuss and not cycle downhill with the brakes on the whole time)
- I really wonder how much faster the trip might be on a flashy carbon bike – but my Scottish upbringing prevents me from ever thinking of buying a bike which costs more than my first car!


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    risris Posts: 1,002
    i rode my folder into work last week and while i didn't time myself exactly i know it took at least 5mins longer and was certainly less comfortable. the folder is an airnimal with winter touring tyres so no heavier than my spesh allez and the rolling resistance should be the same.

    i can't imagine not riding on a drop bar / aero bar bike now; there is something so rewarding and relaxing in it.

    ccs - you need to get a carbon bike now, if only in the interests of science!
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    shadowone1shadowone1 Posts: 1,408
    [quote]by ris » 27 Jul 2009 08:23

    i rode my folder into work last week quote]

    RIS.... really you rode a folder..... straight jacket for you mate
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    TRIumphantTRIumphant Posts: 850
    Interesting to see the difference. If you ever get the urge, it would be interesting to see what incremental changes to your MTB would make to the time:
    - Clipless pedals
    - Slick tyres
    - Remove the detritus
    - Pointy helmet

    If you undertake the baove phased changes, let us know how you get on
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    risris Posts: 1,002
    shadowone1 wrote:
    by ris » 27 Jul 2009 08:23

    i rode my folder into work last week
    RIS.... really you rode a folder..... straight jacket for you mate
    airnimal joey sport, baby! 24" wheels so nice and stable, and goes like manure off a teflon shovel. not a very small fold though. the pic below is pretty much the same as mine, only cleaner

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    shadowone1shadowone1 Posts: 1,408
    I didn't mean that.... pictures of you in an office cupboard having the time off you life with a "folder".

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