Thursday, December 1, 2011

Bike Term Dictionary

This is a Glossary of sorts I've compiled over the years that will be occasionally updated.  Think of it as your Bike Dictionary. Bookmark it and use it often. Don’t know what something means?  Look for it here.  Can’t find it?  Write us or leave a comment and we’ll create a new entry.  We hope this is a great service that we can all keep improving.  Enjoy!
Sorry, I’m not going to even try to keep this in alphabetical order…
Road Bike Terms-
Cadence: The revolutions per minute (rpm) of your cranks as propelled by your legs. Often used as a measure of efficiency (higher cadence is usually deemed more efficient) or as a guide for gear selection.  In road cycling for the last decade, 90 rpm is considered a benchmark cadence.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Fascinating Article on Tire Testing

Part of a series I'm calling Tires 101 with lots of great info to consider when looking for new tires. 


Our choices in the tires we ride are possibly among the most subjective we make. There is often very little empirical data (except maybe price...) that is involved. More commonly our "data" is along the lines of "my buddy says they're the fastest tires he's ridden" or "she said she didn't get flat tires for a year". When  you really stop and think about it though - there is a lot of highly personal variables involved in those statements. Let's cut through the clutter.

I've long admired's James Huang's technical writing and referred to it often as the best in cycling journalism (although - VeloNews has really stepped it up lately).

One of his latest pieces highlights a tire testing facility in Finland that seems to finally be coming up with some good data on tires in real-world type scenarios and less-so in the controlled laboratory conditions of older tests.  The article has some fascinating facts and data; confirming some long-held thoughts and theories of my own and surprising me on a few areas that I had accepted as fact which it seems were not.

     -Wider tires are faster due to less energy lost in casing deformation.  The study specifically cites 25 mm tires versus 23mm tires.

Friday, January 7, 2011

What Size Bike do I Need?


Answer: it's complicated...
 I received a question from a reader in the comments section this summer and I've finally written an article in response as I promised.  (Keep using comments, folks - I do read them and respond when I can - but I have a family and a full-time job; so this "hobby" of blogging sometimes takes a back seat).  Here's the question; my responses; and the article.  Enjoy!    
Greg G said...
Matt, I'm beginning to shop for a new bike, but there's so much to choose from, with barely perceptible differences really. Can someone get fitted for a new bike without knowing precisely what brand they're going to buy? Since no single shop carries all the possibilities, it makes this a much tougher process.  

Matt Magee said...
Greg- Excellent question. Something I should probably answer in more detail with a dedicated post. Thanks for the inspiration. Now, the short answer is: This is actually where you should start! However, we must clearly define that there is a difference between "fitting" and "sizing".


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