Topic: Functional Nostalgia?
Riding primarily my Lemond Nevada City roadbike these past few days I can't help but note that, not only does it's steel frame look better than fugly oversized unobtanium, but it rides better.
Well, not better exactly, just different, but depending on how you assess a ride quality, it could be. For instance, the bike feels stable not only when climbing but also descending, even at speed. Also it seems to handle bumps pretty good, with a lot less harshness than even some other steel frames. And the welds on the 853 Reynolds frame are clean and wonderfully done.
So how, can I ask myself, can I justify keeping the bike outfitted the the stock el cheapo parts kit?
Tho the 'Vada has essentially the same frame as more expensive bikes like the Zurich, it came with bargain Sora shifters. While the Sora works okay [and I've had shop techs confirm this, one telling me that "I've never had to warranty a Sora shifter", the bike wants more. What to do?
Well, I turned the triple into a double, removing the crank on the drive side and removing the granny gear before putting the crank back on; then I adjusted the limit screws to lock out the "3rd" position of the front shifter. But in reality the inner 42 should now be a 39.... And I intended it to be, with the 42/52 combination a temporary thing until I can get around to replacing the inner gear ...yet, I am loathe the spend $30-something on a chainring! So it stays 52/42 up front for now. Actually, all my old vintage roadbikes had 52/42, but that was in high school and early college; I am older and heavier now. Yet...
For now, at 42/52, I can still make it up some big hills -- this is with an extra 30 lbs I should probably lose, and a knee that still could be described as "bum".
I got the Lemond because though a modern bike, it so closely resembled the steel framed roadies of yore. Maybe that 52/42 combo shoudl stick around a bit, then. It makes the resemblence all the more true.
...And reminds me that, though I have a bit of a way to go until I'm the 160 lb me who used to ride for 5 or so hours a day, I can still make it up those hills with those same gears.