The Chainlink

Traffic 'round these parts dropped off pretty dramatically a few weeks ago... hard to tell from the "I rode today" thread who's still riding, as one would have to conclude that Gene is the only one out there most days by reading it....

Who's sticking it out and plans to continue to ride pretty much every day regardless of weather?

(Was winter 2013;   2014 starts on p. 36;   2015 starts on p. 61)

 

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The roads in the Loop are free of snow with a smattering of salt. At the very least, main roads will be snow free, secondary roads should be 99% clear as well. We really didn't get much snow at all.

Teresa said:

Okay. Thanks. I might try riding first and see how the roads are.......

h' 1.0 said:

Yup. Just test the rack first to make sure the spring still tensions.

Teresa said:

I biked today. It's my first winter and as I sit here looking out my window I'm a little worried about getting home in the snow. Any advice? Do all CTA buses have bike racks in case I chicken out?

Loop sidewalks are another matter.  My lunchtime walk was a slip-and-slide experience.  Streets were much cleaner than sidewalks.  :(

Kevin C 4.1 mi said:

The roads in the Loop are free of snow with a smattering of salt. At the very least, main roads will be snow free, secondary roads should be 99% clear as well. We really didn't get much snow at all.

It's the salt that has me on the CTA today.  I rode through every condition a few winters ago, and the salt destroyed my bike.  What does everyone do to keep their bike in shape if you ride in the salty slush?  

Kevin C 4.1 mi said:

The roads in the Loop are free of snow with a smattering of salt. At the very least, main roads will be snow free, secondary roads should be 99% clear as well. We really didn't get much snow at all.

Full coverage fenders go a long way to keeping salt and crud off the bike.  

JM 6.5 said:

It's the salt that has me on the CTA today.  I rode through every condition a few winters ago, and the salt destroyed my bike.  What does everyone do to keep their bike in shape if you ride in the salty slush?  

Kevin C 4.1 mi said:

The roads in the Loop are free of snow with a smattering of salt. At the very least, main roads will be snow free, secondary roads should be 99% clear as well. We really didn't get much snow at all.

Yup, full fenders make a big difference. A bike sponge bath every week or so (as needed) helps too.

Rich S said:

Full coverage fenders go a long way to keeping salt and crud off the bike.  

JM 6.5 said:

It's the salt that has me on the CTA today.  I rode through every condition a few winters ago, and the salt destroyed my bike.  What does everyone do to keep their bike in shape if you ride in the salty slush?  

Kevin C 4.1 mi said:

The roads in the Loop are free of snow with a smattering of salt. At the very least, main roads will be snow free, secondary roads should be 99% clear as well. We really didn't get much snow at all.

Thanks, guys.  I had full fenders but I was probably too lax on washing the bike down after rides in the slush.  It actually got so bad that the shift cable rusted in the housing end cap!  My bike at the time was a Trek FX, and the aluminum frame gave me a false sense of confidence with regards to rust (which was a bad idea).  Unfortunately the Trek was stolen last year after I rebuilt it as an Xtracycle.  

I now commute on my trusty 12-year old LeMond steel frame, and after the experience with the rust I'm even more apprehensive to ride a steel frame on salted roads.

I'd love to have studded tires.  They don't make them in size 27 and I just don't see how I can convert my current bicycle to 700's.    The brakes don't have a long enough reach.

Chi Lowe 12.5+ mi said:

If it's feasible price-wise for you, call around to some LBS' and find out if they have any studded tires in stock (or post to this thread).

My buddy Fo still riding i drive from jan 1 till the end of feb but will ride when there is a nice day like next week they are talking 40's

Riding. Every. Day. Hey there, h'.

Full fenders help a lot, as does frequent washing.  I actually put one of those wall rack thingys in our basement shower, and it's great.  If you can't wash anything else, rinse off, dry, and lube your chain/cables as they get salted/slushed. Also, replace your chain (it's a lot cheaper than your casette and derailleurs) every 900 winter miles. 

Yep. 

Peenworm Grubologist said:

Well I'll probably still need to get to places over the winter, so, 

Just get an inexpensive chain checker tool and replace the chain when it reaches 1% elongation. You may get a lot more than 900 miles out of a chain. This one works well: http://www.performancebike.com/bikes/Product_10054_10551_1030356_-1...

Steve

Rich Evans said:

 Also, replace your chain (it's a lot cheaper than your casette and derailleurs) every 900 winter miles. 

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