Thursday, March 09, 2006

My Old Trek 1220

I have been thinking about bikes lately. I have an old Trek 1220 that I bought second-hand back in 1994. It doesn't have many miles on it, as it has been in storage for most of the time that I have had it. On the good side, it has a light aluminum frame, and it has a three sprocket front gear. This gives it plenty of really low gears which is useful in going up hills, especially for someone like myself, who is heavy and out of shape.

On the bad side are the really pathetic breaks, which are Shimano Exage. Most of the other components are Shimano RX100 components, which are of marginal quality, but decent. One thing that I really do not like about the component group on my bike is the downtube shifters, which I find very inconvenient. But it gets worse. The front derailer is not indexed. What this means it that you have to shift by feel or sound of the gears. I often have to look down at the gears while I shift, which isn't very safe. It is essential to get the derailer in the right place or the chain can suddenly move to the wrong gear or even come off the bike altogether. I actually had the chain come off on one ride. It is not difficult to get the chain back on, but I don't want to be on the side of the road putting the chain back on my bike during a race.

Another issue, and probably the most important one is fit. I bought the bike not knowing a thing about bike fit. Still, to this day I'm not sure if I can fit on the bike. I have made various adjustments like a new Nitto 66 seat post and aero bars, but have never been really comfortable on the thing. Part of the problem is that I'm not sure what the fit is supposed to be like. I always assumed that the comfort level was really just me and the fact that I was out of shape, and not the bike. I really need someone who knows bikes to come over and take a look at this thing with me on it and see if it can be made to work. Perhaps I just need a different stem or something simple like that.

For now, when I start training for the bike I will take spinning classes.

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