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"Just replace the chain, it'll be fine": Bike shop horrified by customer's unbelievably worn drivetrain; Plans for major "game-changer" cycle lane praised; "This fantastic driver should give lessons": Not Near Miss of the Day + more on the live blog

Halfway to the weekend, folks! Dan Alexander is back on live blog duty for your Wednesday ride through the weird and wonderful world of cycling
14 February 2024, 09:22
"Just replace the chain, it'll be fine": Bike shop horrified by customer's unbelievably worn drivetrain

"Yeah, I'm not sure what's going on to be honest... just bought a new chain but it's still skipping all the time..."

"No worries, we'll take a look at it..."

Everyone's favourite Instagram account is back with another jaw-dropping tale from the trenches of the 'interesting' life that is being a bike shop mechanic. From the guys who brought us the impossibly worn tyre that earned its owner a standing ovation, the rust-ridden "tetanus express" that no amount of WD-40 could cure, and of course the double cleat conundrum, the Trench Tales crew has a new contender for the 'Your Bike Hates You' award...

Bike shop horrified by drivetrain (@trench_tales/Instagram)
Bike shop horrified by drivetrain (@trench_tales/Instagram)

Trench Tales described this as: "A lovely matching set [...] Ninja star + circular saw pairing for the win!". You could do some damage with those...

"Just replace the chain, it'll be fine," one amusing comment suggested.

"Thorough dedication to the wear. Save a penny lose a pound," another added.

And a personal favourite: "You bike mechanics are all on the take from Shimano, every time I come in I need a new chain, cassette, chainrings, and pulleys."

Anyway, give Trench Tales a follow on Instagram for all this goodness in your feed as it drops, if nothing else it'll make you feel marginally less guilty for not cleaning your bike at the weekend (hint hint, writer of a certain live blog) but 'inspire' you to get it next time before your jockey wheels become the butt of interent shaming...

14 February 2024, 18:11
Cyclist threatened with €13 million fine and two years in prison over bike shed, forcing her to give up cycling
14 February 2024, 16:51
CYCLISTS! CAUTION SIGNAGE IN CYCLEWAY
14 February 2024, 16:40
Italian football club remembers Marco Pantani on 20th anniversary of his death
2000 Tour de France Marco Pantani Lance Armstrong Col d' Izzard Pic- Simon Wilkinson-SWPIX - 1

20 years ago today, 14 February 2004, Marco Pantani was found dead at a hotel in Rimini, the tragic end of a downward spiral that had seen one of the cycling's most prodigious talents, admittedly athletic performances not without controversy, descend from the top of the sport in 1998, the last male rider to complete a Giro-Tour double in the same season, to an addiction-riddled demise just six years later.

This was the scene at Italian football club Cesena last night as the fans of the Serie C club based in the city of Il Pirata's birth remembered their hero...

14 February 2024, 15:12
Your bike hates you — a trip through the road.cc archives

Thought those jockey wheels and chainrings were bad? Here's the rest of our top five from live blogs past...

4. The "Tetanus Express"

Rusty bike (@trench_tales/Instagram)

> "It just needs a tune up...": Bike shop shares the rust-ridden "tetanus express" that no amount of WD-40 could cure 

3. The impossibly worn tyre, whose owner only came in for a tube

Worn tyre (@trench_tales/Instagram)

> Is there any rubber left? The impossibly worn tyre that earned bike shop visitor a standing ovation from mechanics... after he only came in "for a tube"

2. The handlebars that needed an exorcist, not a mechanic

Handlebar nightmare (Credit: Stevil Kinevil/Twitter)

> "This needs an exorcist, not a mechanic": You'll never train indoors without a towel again 

And coming in at number one, technically not a bike and also subject of some debate about if it could even be real... introducing... the double cleat horror show...

Cleat disaster (Image credit: @trench_tales/Instagram)

> Can it be real? Mechanic shares double cleat horror set-up

Who'd work in a bike shop?

14 February 2024, 14:49
How green is your carbon bike? And why your next one could be made from recycled carbon fibre
14 February 2024, 14:42
Opening stage of Vuelta a Andalucia Ruta del Sol cancelled due to farmer protests

Following in the tractor tyre tracks of Etoile de Bessèges two weeks ago, the opening stage of the early season week-long Spanish stage race Ruta del Sol has been cancelled due to farmer protests on the route.

According to Spanish radio broadcaster COPE, the teams were informed on their way to start, with the stage cancelled less than an hour before racing was set to get underway.

"There's a blockade after 40 kilometres of racing and the police have also been ordered to work elsewhere," Lotto-Dstny directeur sportif Dirk Demol told Het Nieuwsblad. "There were also no alternative routes. We are now trying to schedule a training ride, but we also don't know where we can pass."

Bahrain Victorious managed to plot a last-minute route...

 

It remains to be seen if racing will begin tomorrow. In the meantime the opening stage of Volta ao Algarve will have to keep everyone entertained if, like Rendel Harris in the comments section, you're spending Valentine's Day watching bike racing. Who said romance is dead? 

14 February 2024, 11:39
Richard Branson claims "body armour is a must" for cyclists after latest crash
14 February 2024, 10:51
Adam Yates victorious at Tour of Oman summit finish, wins race overall
Adam Yates Tour of Oman (ASO/Oman Cycling Association/Thomas Maheux)

[ASO/Oman Cycling Association/Thomas Maheux]

Adam Yates is off the mark for 2024, winning the Tour of Oman's Green Mountain summit finish to win the race overall too. UAE Team Emirates pulled off a 1-3-4 on GC, Yates, Finn Fisher-Black and Diego Ulissi sandwiched either side of Soudal Quick-Step climber Jan Hirt. Not much else to say apart from sharing this pretty relatable snap by Thomas Maheux...

(ASO/Oman Cycling Association/Thomas Maheux)

UAE Team Emirates dominate at Tour of Oman ahead of UAE Tour? What's that S-word that means something like when sport — with all the positive feelings it inspires — is used to divert attention from social or environmental problems? It's on the tip of my tongue... rhymes with port-sloshing?

14 February 2024, 10:27
🚨New bike 🚨 Factor releases new Ostro VAM as "the benchmark aerodynamic, lightweight race bike"

Watt savings? Lighter? Yep, all the usual claims for a big bike launch, but also a new one for us... 

2024 Factor Ostro VAM  - 13.jpeg

Factor reckons that Michael Woods would have had an additional time advantage of 2:21mins on his stage nine victory at the 2023 Tour de France if he'd been on the new Ostro VAM instead of the old one.

Check out our best guess at how Factor has come up with that eyebrow-raising figure, plus all the rest of the all-important details...

2024 Factor Ostro VAM  - 12.jpeg

> Factor releases new Ostro VAM as "the benchmark aerodynamic, lightweight race bike"

14 February 2024, 10:23
Comment of the day
14 February 2024, 10:19
"This fantastic driver should give lessons on how to pass people on bikes": Not Near Miss of the Day

A week old but this vid popped up on the timeline this morning, some refreshing PassPixi footage...

14 February 2024, 10:05
Plans for major "game-changer" cycle lane praised

For those of you particularly interested...

As road.cc Simon, a certified London cycling expert points out: "It really is a hugely important route". That's seen in the reaction to the proposals, initially called for by campaigners back in 2017

Politico journalist Jon Stone called the plans "a game-changer", the proposal for protected cycle lanes on Clerkenwell Road, a huge east-west cycling corridor with no infrastructure currently .

The London Cycling Campaign's Simon Munk has had his say too and said that while there are "several small issues", such as the absence of a CYCLOPS junction, the "main response I suspect will also be 'get it in, thank you so much!'"

Dan is the road.cc news editor and has spent the past four years writing stories and features, as well as (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. Having previously written about nearly every other sport under the sun for the Express, and the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for the Non-League Paper, Dan joined road.cc in 2020. Come the weekend you'll find him labouring up a hill, probably with a mouth full of jelly babies, or making a bonk-induced trip to a south of England petrol station... in search of more jelly babies.

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20 comments

Avatar
HLaB | 2 months ago
1 like

FWIW the 'Caution Cycle way' signage is actually near Peterborough rail station and the multi storey car park next to it (left of the pic), and Borges Boulevard and the shopping centre are on the right.

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HLaB replied to HLaB | 2 months ago
2 likes

Its an old photo too, looking at streetview the council got rid of that lampost in 2014!

https://maps.app.goo.gl/A5GUvK37TY9L1jYc7

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David9694 | 2 months ago
1 like

A recent repair cafe donation had a seized front mech: a new one on me, not visibly deteriorated and no amount of WD, with its range of lubricating properties, would clear it. The downtube levers had been swapped over left for right and both gear cables cut (neatly) at the far ends. 

The front mech, which I had to replace, would pull outwards on the lever, but would not spring back.  Was the swapping over of the levers someone's attempt at addressing this?

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andystow replied to David9694 | 2 months ago
1 like

David9694 wrote:

A recent repair cafe donation had a seized front mech: a new one on me, not visibly deteriorated and no amount of WD, with its range of lubricating properties, would clear it. The downtube levers had been swapped over left for right and both gear cables cut (neatly) at the far ends. 

The front mech, which I had to replace, would pull outwards on the lever, but would not spring back.  Was the swapping over of the levers someone's attempt at addressing this?

I had that happen on my fat/winter bike. It's hard to keep it clean after riding it through slush and salt, when it's still too cold out to easily wash it. I ended up converting it to 1X.

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don simon fbpe | 2 months ago
0 likes

We could learn a lot from the Spanish (and French) protestors.

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Hirsute replied to don simon fbpe | 2 months ago
2 likes

Non violent protest in this country leads to arrest and imprisonment and directives from the home secretary.

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ROOTminus1 replied to Hirsute | 2 months ago
5 likes

They didn't state which lesson we could learn from the French...

..viva la révolution!

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IanGlasgow replied to ROOTminus1 | 2 months ago
2 likes

ROOTminus1 wrote:

They didn't state which lesson we could learn from the French... ..viva la révolution!

Or the Spanish...

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Hirsute | 2 months ago
2 likes

road.cc item ?

https://twitter.com/DrAmandaSeims/status/1757518261959213406

Assuming it's not a scam to locate the owners new bike !

//pbs.twimg.com/media/GGNwtLFWUAA5m-v?format=jpg&name=small)

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Rendel Harris | 2 months ago
4 likes

Bad news I'm afraid for anyone who, like me, was planning on romantically spending Valentine's Day watching the Vuelta Andalucia with their other half: the first stage has been cancelled due to (as far as I can tell from reading Spanish websites, it's not exactly one of my strongest languages) farmers' protests. However, all is not lost, Discovery+ have Stage 1 of the Volta Algarve from 14.50, so put the champagne on ice for a little longer!

Just thought I'd mention it to save anyone doing what I did, which is spend 10 minutes searching the whole Discovery+ website complaining that they must be showing it, it was in the schedule yesterday…

Avatar
ROOTminus1 | 2 months ago
8 likes

Branson claims body armour is a *must*?!?

Talk about getting arse about face on the subject of personal responsibility. Intrinsic protections that work for everyone should be first and foremost. PPE is the last resort.
Maybe he'd understand better if he paid his fair share of tax and hadn't amassed wealth by exploitation then claimed the old "I'm alright Jack, hands off my pile"

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Matthew Acton-Varian replied to ROOTminus1 | 2 months ago
5 likes

Or, he should set up Virgin Potholes, to fix the sorry state of the roads!

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lesterama replied to ROOTminus1 | 2 months ago
1 like

Some beardy old people really need to retire from the public eye

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Hirsute replied to ROOTminus1 | 2 months ago
1 like

There's a difference between PPE to protect yourself from yourself and to protect yourself from others.

Obviously it depends on the type of riding you do, but I guess nearly everyone on here wears gloves and glasses as a minimum. oldridgeback has often written about the type of protection needed for off road and bmx riding.

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Sredlums replied to Hirsute | 2 months ago
0 likes

A helmet, that's it.
I ride gravel and/or mtb trails, but I know my limits well and hardly ever fall. So I don't wear gloves (I have never found a pair that felt comfortable, that doesn't help either).
I don't wear glasses either. They irritate me, and I have no problems with sunlight or stuff getting in my eyes, or the wind, so I feel no need for them.

Avatar
yellowjack replied to Sredlums | 2 months ago
3 likes

Errrrrrm? If you hardly ever fall off, why do you need the helmet? I've had plenty of spills where gloves have prevented me from getting a palm full of gravel. I've had road debris and insects bounce off my (dirt cheap) glasses instead of jabbing me in an eye countless times, along with brambles and tree branches smack me in the mush. Yet only twice in more than 45 years of riding have I had an incident where my helmet was called into action. I'd happily ride without a helmet, but I won't swing my leg over a top tube without wearing gloves and eye protection.
You do you, by all means, but I've never understood the obsession with protection for your head without wearing measurably more effective eye protection.
As for the gloves thing? A palm full of gravel may not be an issue if you have a broom wagon on speed dial, but I don't have the luxury of a "team car" in my household, and the prospect of a 60 or 70 kms ride home while in pain from grated palms really doesn't appeal.

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Sredlums replied to yellowjack | 2 months ago
1 like

Simple: I choose to wear a helmet when I ride more active and/or longer then just city use, in my case mostly gravel and mtb. Like I said, i hardly ever fall, but IF I fall, and that happens to involve my head hitting something, I prefer to have a helmet take the first impact.
In short: small chance of something happening, but reasonably big chance of serious consequences if it does, and protection that doesn't bother me → I choose to wear protection.

For gloves and glasses the reasoning differs from that.
Small chance of something happening, and small chance of serious consequences, and protection that does bother me → I choose not to wear protection.

Getting something in your eye is miserable, but the chances of any lasting problem as a result of that are miniscule. Hurting the palms of your hands is a bitch, but it's not the end of the world either.
The last time I hurt my hands in a fall was in the early nineties, when mtb's were new and I was young and stupid. And I can't even remember getting anything in my eyes more than a spat of mud or a little fly, and after blinking a few times, that was that.
Glasses always slide of my head - it's not their fault, I have a nose that is impossible to perch glasses upon - and gloves irritate me to no end.
So there you have it.

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Backladder | 2 months ago
18 likes

Turn the chainring around, the teeth are only worn on one side!

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Matthew Acton-Varian | 2 months ago
10 likes

I have to admit, one thought I had over Jeff Stelling's car (and the obnoxious tweets that followed) - if pedals really did that all drivers would give cyclists a deliberate wide berth.

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Moist von Lipwig | 2 months ago
14 likes

maybe it was those jockey wheels that did Jeff Stellings car.

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