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RE: Rotor Rings

madskatingcow said:
Well, if you look at the pictures, you can see the part number of the black inner ring. It's of the Agilis XC² crank. The outer ring is specific for Specialized.

The inner ring is also sold in 'red', but I prefer to have it in black like the team.

You can get them from the french distributor : http://www.rotorfrance.com

There also seems to be a 42T option as well for the Specialized cranks.
Thanks for the information on the rotor rings. :thumbsup: I actually ordered a pair in the 40/28t combo two days ago. They should be at my door tomorrow afternoon. They will go on my double SWorks crankset for my 09 S-Works Epic and also will be paired up when my SRAM XX components come in. I really appreciated that you send me the information, had no idea where to get them. I actually saw the part numbers on them it is just that I didnt know of the website. I found a website that was also in Texas so that is where I purchased them from. rotorbikeusa.com
 

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culturesponge said:
(on the wifes Stumpy DMD mount) there wasn't enough clearance for the 44t Q-Ring to complete a rotation without modifying the FD, it was really simple mod to gain 1.5mm upward but still but still had to trim 4 of the most prominant teeth with a dremel (can't see it now there's slight wear)

Kervin @ Rotorusa said there are slight discrepancies in the XTR 44t Q-Rings diameters, and they might soon have a 42t for the XTR kit because of install probs with 44t
Is the chainset on your wife's bike XTR M970 too? Do you know if it's just the XTR 44T which has some clearance issues?

I've ordered a full set of standard MTB triple Rotor Q-Rings 44/33/23 today. They're going to go on my Shimano XT M770 chainset with Shimano XT M770 direct mount front derailleur. The rings should hopefully be here early next week. I phoned the distributor and apparently the only difference between the Rotor Q-Ring granny 23T for XTR M970 and standard Q-Ring 23T is that the Rotor Q-Ring 23T granny ring for XTR M970 is thicker.

I wanted to check as SweatyYeti's mtbr review mentions having problems with the clearance of the granny ring and frame. It might be that the non XTR granny ring could work better with the Specialized S-Works chainset?

http://www.mtbr.com/cat/drivetrain/chainring/rotor/q-rings/PRD_412521_112crx.aspx

This attached PDF from the Rotor website is quite interesting. It suggests that you need to spend some time getting used to them for your muscles to adapt:

http://www.rotorbike.com/nueva/pdf/Q-Ring adaptation Phases.pdf

Some more links about Rotor Q-Rings:

http://www.pezcyclingnews.com/?pg=fullstory&id=7075

http://www.bikefix.net/2009/03/bikefix-exclusive-review-rotor-q-ring.html

http://weightweenies.starbike.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=60696

http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=501482

http://forum.slowtwitch.com/cgi-bin...r ring;guest=70016310&t=search_engine#2391354

http://forum.slowtwitch.com/Slowtwitch_Forums_C1/Triathlon_Forum_F1/Rotor_Q_rings_P2142534

http://forum.slowtwitch.com/cgi-bin...ype=AND&search_string=rotor+ring&sb=post_time

http://www.bentrideronline.com/?p=1476

.
 

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WR304 said:
Is the chainset on your wife's bike XTR M970 too? Do you know if it's just the XTR 44T which has some clearance issues?

I've ordered a full set of standard MTB triple Rotor Q-Rings 44/33/23 today. They're going to go on my Shimano XT M770 chainset with Shimano XT M770 direct mount front derailleur. The rings should hopefully be here early next week. I phoned the distributor and apparently the only difference between the Rotor Q-Ring granny 23T for XTR M970 and standard Q-Ring 23T is that the Rotor Q-Ring 23T granny ring for XTR M970 is thicker.

I wanted to check as SweatyYeti's mtbr review mentions having problems with the clearance of the granny ring and frame. It might be that the non XTR granny ring could work better with the Specialized S-Works chainset?
Drivetrain Spec:
XTR M970 crankset + XTR M971 Front Derailleur, SRAM XO Gripshift (with Amy grips for small hands) + tuned X.O medium Rear Derailluer

(hopefully) you wont have any problems installing the 44t Q-Ring, on ours its rotation was just about 1.5mm too much and sparked off the Front Derailleur even on the DMD's highest setting, but yours might be okay though

madskatingcow had no probs installing them but my always hurried Specialized mechanic did. if your FD wont sit high enough on your bikes DMD mounts - just mod the side with the moon spacer edge it up abit and re-install it with red locite on the threads for safety

Q-Rings are definately worth any slight install hassels - expecially if you have alot of climbing on your regular rides (or you have any injuries)
 

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I got my bike back from the shop today.:)

Mark at Specialized UK tested my fork and thought there wasn't anything wrong with the fork brain. I've removed my previous post.

I'm not sure that I completely understand how a fully run in E100 fork should feel.

My fork after 150 hours use has very good small bump sensitivity. It has 80psi pressure in the air spring and 1 1/4 turns rebound damping from full fast. After the last service in June 2009 the compression when stationary and pushing down on the fork felt "stiff", like pushing through treacle at 4-5-6 clicks from full firm, which I thought was normal and a sign that the brain was working. At 5 clicks from full firm it took quite a bit of effort to compress the fork. When you push down on the fork at 4 and 5 clicks from full firm now it's just like a normal fork. 1-2-3 clicks still feel fairly "stiff". If you push down with the fork brain full firm there's some free travel 1cm -1.5cm and then a soft brain platform which is easily pushed through. It doesn't take much effort to break through the brain platform.

culturesponge said:
Drivetrain Spec:
XTR M970 crankset + XTR M971 Front Derailleur, SRAM XO Gripshift (with Amy grips for small hands) + tuned X.O medium Rear Derailluer

(hopefully) you wont have any problems installing the 44t Q-Ring, on ours its rotation was just about 1.5mm too much and sparked off the Front Derailleur even on the DMD's highest setting, but yours might be okay though

madskatingcow had no probs installing them but my always hurried Specialized mechanic did. if your FD wont sit high enough on your bikes DMD mounts - just mod the side with the moon spacer edge it up abit and re-install it with red locite on the threads for safety

Q-Rings are definately worth any slight install hassels - expecially if you have alot of climbing on your regular rides (or you have any injuries)
Having looked at the XT M770 front derailleur on my Epic Marathon carbon the front derailleur appears to be near its maximum height with a Shimano 44T chainring.

I haven't taken it apart yet as the rings won't be here until next week. This is definitely looking like it's going to take some modding to get the chainring to fit though.

This pic from page 11 of the Specialized Epic manual shows the spacers that will hopefully make fitting the Rotor 44T ring easy.:)
 

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Has anyone ridden a 2010 epic with the new fox rear shock. I ordered a 2010 epic s-works but I am in the waiting game right now. I have been told the end of september. I sold my 2008 stumpy s-works and had no problems. I am hoping for the same thing out of my new epic.
 

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WR304 said:
Having looked at the XT M770 front derailleur on my Epic Marathon carbon the front derailleur appears to be near its maximum height with a Shimano 44T chainring.

I haven't taken it apart yet as the rings won't be here until next week. This is definitely looking like it's going to take some modding to get the chainring to fit though.

This pic from page 11 of the Specialized Epic manual shows the spacers that will hopefully make fitting the Rotor 44T ring easy.:)
My Rotor chainrings turned up today. They're the standard model 44/33/23 104/64mm MTB triple rings. I've fitted them in position 2 to start with.:)

The orientation of the spacers in the Specialized manual was the opposite of how they were installed on my XT M770 front derailleur to work with the original Shimano XT 44T round chainring: The front derailleur mount was already as high as it would go with the crescent spacer at the top and the other spacer flipped.

The only way to fit the 44T Rotor chainring on my Epic was to do the same mod as culturesponge on his wife's Stumpjumper FSR. Fortunately the front derailleur bracket is soft alloy. It only took 30 seconds with a hacksaw to cut the bottom out of the two bracket holes to allow the front derailleur to be moved 1.5mm higher. This is very easy to do and means that the front derailleur stays aligned with the chainring. The front derailleur still seems solidly mounted to the frame afterwards by the two 4mm allen bolts.

After doing this I then filed 0.5mm approx off the six tallest teeth on the Rotor 44T chainring (three at each of the oval high points where the chainring is closest to the front derailleur). After modding the front derailleur they were still close and catching slightly on the trailing edge of the front derailleur. This is very easy to do as the chainring is made from alloy too.

The only real issue I had was getting the original Shimano XT chainrings off. Rather than use 5mm allen key chainring bolts Shimano have had the great idea of using Torx T-30 chainring bolts on the XT M770 chainset. I thought I had the correct tool but didn't. That involved a rushed drive to the bike shop at 5.15pm just before they closed to borrow their workshop Torx T-30 wrench to get the chainring bolts out. I then replaced all the Shimano Torx bolts with a set of standard 5mm allen key chainring bolts.:)

As I had the chainset off I had a look at the bottom bracket too. The inside of the Epic carbon's bottom bracket is one piece alloy. There aren't any holes from the seat tube or downtube leading into the bottom bracket so water shouldn't get in that way. Despite that there was still moisture and water inside the bottom bracket and on the chainset axle. It must be coming in through the seals. The bearings seemed ok. I let it all dry out and put some grease inside before putting the chainset back on.

I haven't had a chance to try riding on the Rotor chainrings yet but they seem to be shifting ok with the bike stationary: not as good as the original Shimano XT rings but the pick up pins seemed to work. With the Shimano XT chainset there are no clearance issues between the Rotor granny ring and frame.

Pictured below: Rotor oval chainrings 44/33/23 fitted on Epic Marathon carbon with modified XT M770 direct mount front derailleur
 

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Discussion Starter · #270 ·
WR304,

You are the information and link KING! Man can you find info! If I ever write another research paper, you are the guy I am turning to! :thumbsup: Looking at all those Qrings pics, I now have Q ring envy and might just have to follow in those footsteps soon. Let us know how they ride. Also I am curious if there is a noticeable shifting difference resulting from where the oval is in relation to the front der?
 

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bellullabob said:
WR304,

You are the information and link KING! Man can you find info! If I ever write another research paper, you are the guy I am turning to! :thumbsup: Looking at all those Qrings pics, I now have Q ring envy and might just have to follow in those footsteps soon. Let us know how they ride. Also I am curious if there is a noticeable shifting difference resulting from where the oval is in relation to the front der?
I was going to add this Q-Ring link too as it's quite a good discussion:

http://www.fairwheelbikes.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=5389

I did 1h40 on them today on the road. The front shifting is fine over all three chainrings. The modified front derailleur worked normally with no issues. You have to hold the shift trigger a little longer going up from a smaller chainring onto a bigger chainring than with Shimano rings but the actual shifts are smooth.

The oval rings aren't that noticeable when riding. You can see the rings aren't round if you look down whilst pedalling but the actual pedalling action isn't changed much. I got on the bike and was ok pedalling at my usual 95-100rpm straight away. There doesn't seem to be any major learning curve with them.:)

I need to ride them a bit more to decide if I'm actually any faster with the Rotor rings. I certainly wasn't going 0.6mph faster than with round rings today. They did seem better in places where I was trying to stay on top of a big gear and sprinting up short power climbs though.:)

Front Derailleurs for 2009 Epic
The term "Direct Mount" seems to be used interchangeably depending on which front derailleur you look at. Specialized and SRAM call the derailleur which fits on the Epic direct mount whilst Shimano call them E type. For the 2009 Epic you want either:

Shimano Deore XT FD-M770-E (installed without the removable BB plate)
Shimano XTR FD-M970-E (installed without the removable BB plate)

http://bike.shimano.com.br/media/te...FD/EV-FD-M970-2587B_v1_m56577569830647966.pdf

The SRAM XX direct mount front derailleur should fit also if you're planning to use a double chainset.:)

http://www.sram.com/en/XX/products/front-derailleur.php

Pictured below: Shimano XTR FD-M970-E front derailleur for 2009 Epic
 

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bellullabob said:
How do you like those Rotor Q rings???? Is there is a real difference?
I've done a few rides with the Rotor Q-Rings now. So far they actually seem to be doing what they're claimed to. At the very least they aren't any worse than round rings.:)

Both today and yesterday I managed personal best times 3-4% quicker than previously for the same routes. I was particularly pleased with the main climb today which is a granny ring climb and quite bumpy so you're basically using strength and mashing just to force the bike to keep going forwards through the bumps: I improved my previous best for the climb from 8min40 to 8min12 which is a 5.3% improvement.:eekster:

The chainrings seem particularly good when you just need a little extra to keep in a higher gear up a drag and for short bursts of power and acceleration. When my pedal gets to the bottom of the stroke it does seem smoother pedalling also. My knees have been fine. It's difficult to say if they feel better than with normal round chainrings. From the recorded data my pedalling cadence appears to have stayed exactly the same as when riding round rings. Exercise heart rates seem very similar with no major differences when the data is overlaid.*

The front shifting isn't as good as Shimano rings. I've had a few crunching upshifts going from the 23T granny to 33T middle ring. You have to really hold the trigger in until it shifts up to stop the chain falling back off the pins. With Shimano rings I'd press the trigger once and that would be enough for a clean upshift on the front chainrings. Going from the 33T middle ring to 44T big ring seems ok.

There are quite a few qualifications to the paragraphs above of course.

- The change from 22T/ 32T round chainrings to 23T/ 33T oval chainrings means that the gear ratios on the granny and middle ring have increased. Pedalling at the same cadence with a higher gear means you'll be travelling quicker regardless of whether the chainrings are oval or round. It makes it a bit harder to compare riding on those two chainrings fairly with round rings of a different size.

- In terms of my riding I'd expect to be going quite well this week with any chainrings. I had a solid July and most of August followed by a five day period off the bike last week whilst my Epic's shocks were at Specialized UK. All I did until Saturday last week was some weight training (mostly focusing on grip strength, forearms, shoulders and core work) so I should be well rested. I had good pace on Tuesday's ride using round chainrings and there's a good chance I would have improved on personal bests dating from May and July with the round rings also.

- This five day recovery period last week also gave my right knee a rest. When I fell off in July I bruised the knee cap. It was a tiny bruise on the side but it must have bruised underneath the knee cap itself and it never really settled down. Having that time off makes it difficult to say if it's the rest or oval chainrings helping it feel better.

- My pedalling style is fairly high cadence (95-100rpm average) but has been described as "stabbing" down at the pedals. When you read the comments about oval chainrings perhaps they suit some pedalling styles more than others?

- I've only done three rides on the Rotor Q-Rings. That's not really enough to get a detailed feel for them. I think there must be some specificity in muscle use as the top of my calves just below the knee and some different parts of my thighs have been feeling a little sore. It has been settling down a bit though.

* - Although exercise heart rates appear unchanged my Polar OwnOptimizer orthostatic index has shot up since I swapped over the chainrings. This test is essentially the difference between your resting and standing heart rate (See note with explanation at end of this post). The higher the score the more tired and less well recovered you are. I've been doing the test each evening for the last few months (post ride with a gap of 5+ hours from getting in). The report below shows how it has compared to my previous training hours during August. I've mostly been getting a mixture of 2 and 3 scores (including for the 4h10 ride on Tuesday) until 26/27/28 August using the Rotor Q-Rings when the scores were 6, 7, 7.

The green Time bars on the report below are only cycling. It doesn't include weight training.

The other scores on the report are the Polar OwnIndex and Polar HRmax-P. The OwnIndex test is an estimation of your VO2 max whilst the HRmax-P is an estimate of what your maximum heart rate is. In terms of tracking recovery there appears to be a clear pattern where the OwnIndex score drops and the HRmax-P score increases when I'm tired. You can see how the OwnIndex score varies in relation to how much riding I've done during the day. Along with the OwnOptimizer scores the OwnIndex score has been low since I got the chainrings suggesting that I'm tired.

Orthostatic Heart Rate test:

http://www.brianmac.co.uk/hrtest.htm

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http://www.polar.fi/e_manuals/RS800CX/Polar_RS800CX_user_manual_English/ch09.html#OwnOptimizer

Polar OwnOptimizer Scores:
Good Recovery (1)
Your heart rate is lower than average. This indicates that you have recovered very well. You can continue training, including intensive exercise sessions.

Normal State (2)
Your heart rate is at a normal level. Go on with your training; include both light and intensive training sessions, and recovery days.

Training Effect (3)
Your heart rate is higher than average. You may have exercised intensively in the previous days. You have two choices: 1) rest or train lightly for one or two days, or 2) continue intensive training for one or two days and then recover well. Other sources of stress such as the beginning of a fever or an attack of the flu can result in the same kind of response.

Steady State (4)
Your heart rate has continuously been at a normal level for a long time now. Effective training requires both heavy training and good recovery, and this should cause variation in your heart rate results. Your OwnOptimizer result indicates that you have not had very intensive training or good recovery for a while. Perform the test again after a rest or light training day. If the recovery is effective, your result should show Good recovery.

Stagnant State (5)
Your heart rate is still at a normal level, and this has continued for a long time. The result indicates that your training has not been intensive enough to develop optimally. To improve your condition effectively, you should now include more intense or longer exercise sessions in your program.

Hard Training (6)
Your heart rate has been higher than average several times. You may have trained hard on purpose. The result indicates overloading, and you should try to recover well now. To monitor your recovery, perform the test again after one or two resting or easy training days.

Overreaching (7)
Your OwnOptimizer result indicates that you have had a very intensive training period for several days or weeks. Your heart rate has continuously remained at a high level. This seriously indicates that you should have a complete recovery period. The longer you have trained intensively, the longer the recovery period required to recover. Perform the test again after at least two days of recovery.

Sympathetic Overtraining (8)
Your OwnOptimizer result indicates that you have had a very intensive training period for several days or weeks, and your recovery has not been sufficient. This has resulted in a state of overtraining. To return to a normal training state, rest for a carefully monitored recovery period. Follow your recovery by performing the OwnOptimizer Test 2-3 times a week.

Parasympathetic Overtraining (9)
Your heart rate has stayed at a low level, which is generally interpreted as a sign of a good recovery. However, other parameters indicate parasympathetic overtraining. You may have trained with high volumes for a long time, and recovery may not have been sufficient. Check for other signs of overtraining, such as decreased performance, increased fatigue, mood disturbances, sleeping problems, persistent muscle soreness, and/or a feeling of being burnt out or stale. You may also have been subjected to other stresses.

In general, the development of parasympathetic overtraining requires a long history of heavy training volumes. To recover from a state of parasympathetic overtraining, you have to recover body balance completely. Recovering may take several weeks. You should not exercise, instead rest completely for most of the recovery period. You can possibly have a few days with some light aerobic training in short sessions, and only occasionally include short, high-intensity sessions.
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Pictured below: Polar Protrainer 5 report showing exercise time, OwnOptimizer, OwnIndex and HRmax-P scores for August 2009 - Results 26 August 2009 onwards are using Rotor Q-Ring Chainrings
 

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WR304 said:
I think there must be some specificity in muscle use as the top of my calves just below the knee and some different parts of my thighs have been feeling a little sore. It has been settling down a bit though.

* - Although exercise heart rates appear unchanged my Polar OwnOptimizer orthostatic index has shot up since I swapped over the chainrings. This test is essentially the difference between your resting and standing heart rate (See note with explanation at end of this post). The higher the score the more tired and less well recovered you are. I've been doing the test each evening for the last few months (post ride with a gap of 5+ hours from getting in). The report below shows how it has compared to my previous training hours during August. I've mostly been getting a mixture of 2 and 3 scores (including for the 4h10 ride on Tuesday) until 26/27/28 August using the Rotor Q-Rings when the scores were 6, 7, 7.
After 7 days riding with the Rotor Q Rings the (post exercise) muscle soreness is basically gone now so I think that I'm getting used to them. I did a 2h25 ride today (personal best time. :thumbsup: ) with no issues.

The Polar OwnOptimizer and Polar Ownindex test scores recorded by my Polar RS800CX appear to have returned to normal also after being high last week. After today's ride the OwnOptimizer test score from this evening was back down to "2 Normal Training State" rather than the high scores I was seeing last week after rides of similar duration and intensity when I'd just got the Rotor Q Rings.

What I'm interested in seeing is whether the performance improvement I appear to be getting from the Q Rings is going to be sustainable longer term - If the Q rings are actually making me quicker or whether it's a psychological placebo effect?

You'd have laughed yesterday. I was out for a 1hr quiet recovery ride on the flat when some guy on a low profile time trial bike comes flying past on the tri bars at 27mph. I got onto his wheel, said hello, managed one turn on the front and then he went back through, accelerated to 30mph and I got dropped. I wasn't happy as I should have been able to hold the wheel better than that.:madman:

There's also the question of whether the oval rings "sparing" some muscles will detrain them over time. If the muscles that would normally be used pedalling round chainrings don't work as hard then they'll become weaker which may affect performance. i.e. should you train on round rings at least some of the time to keep this conditioning? There doesn't seem to be a clear answer to this anywhere. :)

Pictured below: The Report shows how my Polar OwnOptimizer and Polar OwnIndex scores appear to have returned to normal after 7 days riding on Rotor Q Rings

The table shows the detail of the Polar OwnOptimizer test scores. They are in the format Lying Down Heart Rate - Peak Heart Rate - Standing Heart Rate
 

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Richy said:
WR304. Are you only riding oval now or do you swap between bikes that have both?
I use my Epic as my only bike so have just been using the Rotor chainrings. I swap the tyres over depending what it's used for. With slicks on the Epic pedals well enough that it doesn't really give away that much to a road bike.:)

Did you see this bikeradar article?

http://www.bikeradar.com/news/article/mountain-biker-wins-road-race-on-his-hardtail-22736

I've got one of my old road bikes (which has round chainrings) on the turbo trainer but I tend not to do much indoors work unless I really have to: I'd rather go out and ride in the rain instead.:)
 

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bellullabob said:
that is some pretty amazing amount of data. I bet it gives you lots to think about in regards to your training and riding style. Like you said, it's pretty neat to be able to look at how you brake and how this affects your speed. I bet if you ride the same terrain, it can be really usefull to compare various ways to ride it and how this affects your time. All you need is the gps and a power meter....:p
I thought you might be interested in some of the things that you can look at using recorded 1 second Polar RS800CX data by downloading the raw data into Microsoft Excel.

Along with top speeds and apex corner speeds, it can give you an idea of how close to a corner you're waiting before braking. You can use the change in speed/ distance for each second to calculate roughly how much longitudinal G force is being generated also. A Negative G force indicates deceleration (braking) whilst Positive G force indicates acceleration. I'm not sure if I've used the best formula as it doesn't take into account factors like friction, wind resistance etc but the results are quite interesting.:)

http://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=88098

To be really accurate you still need a higher sample rate than 1 second. Without lateral G force readings you can't draw a traction circle either but bicycle braking G forces aren't something that I've seen posted elsewhere.

The table and graph below are the same hairpin descent that I posted a graph of previously (it makes a good example as the different sections are very clear).:) The bike is my Specialized Epic Marathon carbon, Avid Ultimate SL disc brakes, 26x1.5" Schwalbe Marathon Racer slicks and dry tarmac. The blue trace on the Polar Protrainer 5 graph is recorded speed in mph. I've highlighted the downward sloping sections of the blue speed trace where I was braking. The harder I was braking the steeper the fall in the blue trace. The slowest points on the blue trace are the hairpin corner apexes where I was going round the hairpin before accelerating out again. The Excel line chart is where I calculated the longitudinal G forces generated each second. You can see how the negative braking G forces generated are much higher than the acceleration positive G forces.

The main point from these results is stating the obvious really: Even with hydraulic disc brakes and a good surface the brakes on a mountain bike are nowhere near as good as a car. The highest peak negative g braking I managed on this descent was only -0.339g. With the small tyre contact patch of a bike you simply don't have the grip to generate as much braking force before locking up the wheels.

Apparently a typical road car can generate negative braking G forces of about -1g before the tyres lose grip.

http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/phy05/phy05021.htm

Pictured below: Graph and Table illustrating the braking and accelerating G forces generated descending a series of hairpins.
 

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Discussion Starter · #278 ·
Nice info! :eek: :cool: I did get a headache from trying to look at that g force calculation formula! It would be really interresting to take that same route over and over again, and overlap your cornering info to see what you can learn from it to make you a faster "corner-er" :thumbsup:
 

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bellullabob said:
Nice info! :eek: :cool: I did get a headache from trying to look at that g force calculation formula! It would be really interresting to take that same route over and over again, and overlap your cornering info to see what you can learn from it to make you a faster "corner-er" :thumbsup:
You can overlay exercises in the Polar Protrainer 5 software to see how different days riding compares. You can also add manual lap split times to break the ride down into sections. If you do the same routes regularly it's very useful to be able to look back over several years of data in detail and see whether you've improved or not.

This link shows the formulas that I used. There's a worked example at the bottom where I converted the original G force calculation into a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet formula.

http://forum.polar.fi/showpost.php?p=22311&postcount=19

Another thread you might be interested in is this one about using a heart rate monitor to check the quality of your sleep overnight.:)

http://forum.polar.fi/showthread.php?t=7518

I'm not sure how much benefit the Rotor Q-Rings are actually giving. They seemed good to start with but it's not like every ride since has been consistently faster than I managed on round rings. I'm still undecided about them.

Something that I've been thinking about getting for a while is some Skins compression clothing. It's supposed to help with recovery and also improve performance if you wear it during exercise. I've seen the Skins cycling shorts recommended as being some of the most comfortable too so I got a pair of bib shorts to try whilst riding.

http://www.skins.net/au/en/HowSkinsWork/default.aspx

"Skins™ technical compression wear has been developed and designed to provide engineered gradient compression. When compression is engineered to apply a balanced and accurate surface pressure over specific body parts, it triggers an acceleration of blood flow. This increases oxygen delivery to working muscles to enhance their performance. The circulation improvements also help the body to eliminate lactic acid and other metabolic wastes. The combination of these effects allows you to work at a higher rate for longer" Skins.net

Sizing is worth mentioning as they're supposed to be tight. I'm 6' 0" and 148lbs. According to the sizing chart that should be a size Small pair of shorts. Depending on brand I usually wear medium or large size cycling shorts so I went for a pair of Medium Skins bib shorts too. I wasn't that convinced size Small would be right and they were coming mail order. The medium shorts are still quite a tight fit. I'd be ok with tighter legs but I wouldn't have wanted the bib straps any shorter. I've got a 31" inch waist (too much ice cream post ride :nono: ) and the mediums are tight around the waist too. Size Medium is also recommended for someone who's 6' 0" and 190lbs.:skep:

The padding in the Skins shorts is one piece and without any stitching at all. The design is a lot like the shape of a Specialized body geometry saddle, with thick padding for the sit bones and a cut out down the centre. Compared to the Briko Katana bib shorts that I've been wearing for the last year or so, whose pads are more like giant nappies, the pad is much narrower and you barely know that you're wearing cycling shorts. To ride in they do seem comfortable. The tight elastic fit of the shorts and pad seemed to make it easier to shift my weight around on the bike saddle too. Apart from the tight waist they seem good.

I'm not sure if there was any benefit from the compression fit whilst riding though. My legs felt ok but I wasn't setting any speed records today. Maybe they weren't tight enough? I might get some recovery clothing to try that as a lot of the benefits of compression clothing are supposed to be post ride.

http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2008/10/bike-geek-gear/
http://glorycycles.blogspot.com/2009/04/skins-compressionits-not-snuggie.html
http://www.triathlonfamily.com/forum/lofiversion/index.php/t4567.html

Pictured below: Skins bib shorts
Skins bib shorts sizing chart
 

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Discussion Starter · #280 ·
WR304,

are you still pretty happy w/ your Polar RS800CX? I found a RS800 (no cx) that fits w/in my budget. My understanding is that the difference between the 800 vs 800cx is the cx has mapping capability.

Also, how is your compression clothing experiment working?

I just finished my racing season, and after getting my epic, won the most of the races including the overall series (shameless plug :rolleyes: , but true :D ). Thus, I will be moving to cat 1 which means I need to get a lot more serious and regimented about my training. No haphazard daily rides anymore :nono: .

One thing I struggle w/ is that my legs always feel pretty sore now, so I am going to try to really figure out what the best/fastest recovery is, if I want to step up the intensity, and if that compression clothing help, I am game! :thumbsup:. I also hope the Polar heart rate monitor can help w/ this as well.

thanks

Btw, as an update on the 2009 S-work epic, I have to say that for this race season, we (that is who ever we are in the in the Northeastern US) have had an incredibly wet and muddy season. I don't think I have done more than two races w/ out being covered head to toe in mud. Riding conditions have been pretty tough. The bike has held up beautifully. I initially had a crunchy feeling in the pedal stroke and thought my BB had been contaminated, but then discovered a regular pattern to it and figured out it was a bad link on my chain. Once rid of the link, the bike still pedals like it did on the first day.
 
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