29 September, 2014

French Stems and Installing Grand Cru Reflectors

French Stems
by Clint

Occasionally we get an email requesting we do a run of off sized parts for French bicycles.  Usually there's a pretty good way to work around those obsolete dimensions. I finally decided to swap out the stem on my Peugeot today.  The previous stem was pitting and had a couple gashes in it that would be perfect for crack propagation.  While I was at it, I decided to try out some new bars too.  Of course that would require a new brake lever.

Anyways, the old Atax stem I had in there was a 22.0mm while most conventional threaded stems are 22.2mm.  It's easy enough to take a piece of sandpaper and remove .1mm from the surface.
Signs of wear and tear. 
Purple sandpaper works best. 
The sanding took all of about 15 minutes.  I wish I had thought of this earlier in the process, but if you're trying to be neat about it, tape off the areas you don't want to be sanded.  Nevertheless, the extra abrasions match my frame nicely.  If you're doing this with a steel stem like I did, just be warned that it will be more vulnerable to rust and corrosion without the chrome coating.  Sheldon Brown has some additional words of advice on this and other information on French dimensions.  Overall, I'm pretty happy with the new setup.

Grand Cru Reflectors
by Igor
Adding reflective bits to your bike is one of the simplest and easiest ways to get noticed by traffic. Here's how to mount your new Grand Cru Fender Mounted Reflector.
Presentation is important
The attachment of the reflector to the fender is simple and secure. The included screw threads into the reflector body.
With the bike on the ground, position the reflector where you'd like it to sit. I like it to sit ever so slightly tilted upward to follow the sight line of someone in a car. Too low and or too high and light will not be reflected back. Once you have a good spot, use a punch to prevent the initial drill hole from wandering. Step up the drill bit until the screw fits through.
Put a dab of thread locker or waterproof grease on the threads, tighten, and enjoy!
Do you use reflective materials on your bike? What's your favorite garment to get noticed?


JP said...

Dynamo lights, running whenever I ride, day or night. I also have a crazy bright ANSI II mesh reflective vest. Lightweight, fits over any clothing, and tons of reflective material on it.

Anonymous said...

I use no reflective gear. None. It is a safety myth that reflective anything makes you safer.

And, uh, more visible does not mean safer...

The sight of all this hi-vis and reflective tape everywhere...just perpetuates the myth that bicycling is dangerous. Plus it makes bicyclists look like circus clowns.

Use real dynamo lights AND tailights, and youre good to go. Most everyone who sees dyno-bike-light thinks its a motorcycle.

I love the reflector from VO. I'm buying one...

Anonymous said...

Ankle bands made from 2-inch wide 3M white reflective tape and matching Velcro. The pedaling motion immediately identifies me as a cyclist in a way that static reflective material doesn't.

I also run a dynamo headlight pretty much all the time, and a red tail blinky at night.

Morlamweb said...

I use multiple lights, front and rear, and a lot of 3M Reflexite tape (silver and red) applied to the frame. My current light setup is a cygolite Expilion 800 lumen light (battery-powered, USB rechargeable) paired with a Cygotlie Metro 360-lumen light as a backup. Rear lights are a Light & Motion Viso 10 Macro mounted to the rear luggage rack plus a no-name light mounted to the back of my helmet. Sometime soon I plan to upgrade to the full Vis 180 for even greater visibility. I'll use both lights (battery-powered, USB-rechargeable) because they offer good side lighting. I have pedal reflectors and silver 3M tape on the crank arms. For now, as I do not have a chain guard, I use a reflective ankle strap for pants protection (though, once I get a chain guard, I'm not using the ankle strap). I'd also like to get a Light & Motion headlight for more side visibility.

Anonymous said...

I ride early in the morning through the winter in Boston. I have an Amphipod reflective singlet that I like because it doesn't flap around. Serfas Shield tail light. Gemini Duo 1400 lumen headlight. Bright lights make a difference. Cars slow down, give you more space, and are generally respectful. Or at least more respectful.