Monday, March 18, 2013

Grinding Michaux

District Rd., Michaux State Forest. 
This road is usually in good shape, someone just torn this 100 yd section up with they're truck or car.

It has been a while since I have done a ride report. I am getting the feeling to start again so......

A week or so ago I took off work on Friday and headed up to Michaux State Forest to ride a route I have been working on for my Grinding Gravel Blog. I don't know the roads in Michaux as well as I would like to. So routes have been hard to add to the blog. Mainly because what appears to be a roads turns out to be a double track forest road/trail. Which is fine if you are prepared for that style of riding. I tend to use a cross bike for grinding so most of the time it is fine to hit these forest trails/roads. But for my blog I know everyone might not be on a cross bike. So I try to stick to public roads.

This route here is a little ass kicker if you are not in real good shape. Every time I have done this route it hurts at the end of it. Mentenzer Gap Rd is a kick in the nuts at the end. This route has a nice remote feel to it. Well remote for the east coast. Mainly Gravel on this one with a real nice double track climb/ridge trail (Corls Ridge Rd.) with views from the ridge.  You don't see many cars until you back on the main roads. I think I saw one person in a truck during this ride.

The roads were wet so they were peanut buttery. Climbing was tough at times. Nothing exciting happened during the ride unless you consider climbing exciting. Which I tend to love to do, when I am in shape to do so. This route has a lot of climbing for the 38 mile distance it is. I highly recommend you check Michaux for grinding or better yet Mountain biking. There are some great trails up there.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Gravel Grinder Blog

New blog about Gravel Grinding or Gravel Grinders or Gravel Road Riding or Riding your bike on roads made of Gravel.

This Blog has gone the way of the Dodo bird (or until I I feel like picking it up again)

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Loudoun Gravel Grinders

Purcelville Road outside of Morrisonville, Virginia.

Here are Some Gravel Grinders in Loudoun County,Va. They are 40 to 50 miles long. All start from Loudoun County High School in Leesburg, Va.

40 miler This route will take you north to Historic Waterford via one the nicest gravel roads in Loudoun, Old Waterford road. Then it heads west to Round Hill. Before heading back into Leesburg. There is approximately 26.3 miles of gravel roads on this route. The route is 65% gravel 35% pavement with approximately 3100 feet of climbing.

44 miler North Here is one that will take you north again to Waterford then west to Morrisonville. It will head south along Purcelville road (nice road) with a view of Shot Hill Mountain to your right. Then you will head over to Hamilton before ending in Leesburg. The route has approx. 28.6 miles of gravel roads  The route is 64% gravel and 36% pavement with aprrox. 3600 feet of climbing.

46 miler South This route heads south towards Middleburg's horse country. It takes you on some must do Loudoun roads. First Oatsland rd, a little climby but very pretty in the spring. Then Carters Farm rd., not long but one the nicest in Loudoun. Then there is Foxcroft rd although it is paved, it is a most do. You will pass by Huntland farm and other nice properties before ending in Leesburg. There is approx. 28.3 miles of gravel roads on this route. 64% gravel and 36% pavement with approx. 3800 feet of climbing.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Fixing a Sloppy Time

Well it is about time I address the slop in 5 of my Time pedals. I can say I like Time pedals, they work great. But the Atac and Roc models have a design flaw. The flaw? Pedal strikes against rocks cause the springs to bend. Bent spring would not be a real problem. But when the spring is bent it becomes loose and the tension screw falls out. It is more common with the Roc's then the Atac's. (That is the tension screw falling out). So I sat down and looked at the pedals and came up with a fix. I am sure someone has has done this. I just don't go looking for answers on the web. That would be........well the smart thing to do.

Put pedal in vice, spindle up. The end of the rod is knurled and will not come out without damaging the pedal body if you try to push it through spindle down. Pound rod out (almost all the way) with an awl and dead blow hammer.

It is better if you leave the rod in just enough to able to remove the springs. Remove springs not the piece you clip into. It doesn't matter if you remove the clip piece. It just makes it easier to reassemble if it is not removed.

Also remove the tension screw. It makes reassembly easier if it is removed. The tension screw should just fall out if you tap the pedal on the work bench

Put springs in vice and slightly bend them out. It is important not to bend them to far. If they are bent to far then it is hard to clip into the pedal while riding. Trust me I learned this already.

Reassemble the pedal by placing the spring back in place. Then push the rod through the spring and pedal clip thingy. You may have to use the hammer and awl to get the rod all the way back into place.

With a small screw driver pry the first spring out and push the tension screw in. Do the same with the second spring. After the tension screw is back in place. Turn it with a screwdriver to the #1 position (or the lightest tension). Like I said earlier the pedal may be tight. But that is a good thing. Roc's are done in the same way. But they only have one Spring. And the tension screw is a little harder the get back in.

The whole process should take less then 10 minutes. Now you will not cuss your pedals if they become Sloppy.