27 December 2011

Disc Brake Caliper Adjustment

After a prolonged problem with disc-rub with my disc brakes I finally solved it. The solution is documented very well on the Utah Mountain Biking site. Here are some two pictures with some additional comments to help you out.

Step 1:
Loosen "the two bolts that hold the main body of the brake onto the fork "

At this point make absolutely sure of two things:
1. The wheel is correctly placed in the dropouts and the quick release is completely tightened.

2. The brake cable is not snagged anywhere and the ends of the housings are properly seated.

It is highly recommended to have the bike upside down since this way it is easier to get at the assembly and spin the wheels at will.

Now tighten the Inside pad adjustment screw. This will move the inside pad closer and closer to the disc. Later you will need to loosen it off. You should tighten this 75-100% of the way in so you will have that much more margin when loosening it off.

Use a torch shining light into the gap to inspect the clearances.

Update: Here is the manual for TekTro IO Mechanical Disc brakes, which come standard on the Rockrider 5.3. Also cached here.

Important Fine Print Disclaimer: These instructions are not to be read in isolation, but as additional comments to the link I have posted and other material on the subject. I am not responsible if you wreck your bike with your DIY.

05 December 2011

A fresh look at an old road...

Many of us have traveled a number of times on Hessarghatta Road, making it one of the most familiar roads for bikers in North Bangalore.However it can sometimes be surprisinghow the same roads can look drastically different when travelling the other direction, in different light conditions, and different seasons. Here are some pictures of Hessarghatta Road shrouded in fog, from a recent ride.

Photos courtesy Hari Krishna and Alex Fell.

Hessarghatta Main Road

The Hessarghatta Pump House

28 November 2011

Huliyurdurga 200K: Ride against the elements

The first brevet of the season and the debut brevet of the IISc randonneurs turned out to be quite a challenging ride. The beautiful roads and picturesque scenery almost made up for  a combined assault of rain, wind, climbs and unpaved sections.

17 November 2011

Huliyurdurga 200K Route Summary

The IISc Randonneurs are all set to launch the brevet season with the first (200KM) brevet slated for 26th November 2011. Here's a quick summary of the route for riders who have not ridden these roads...

29 October 2011

Cycling for Everyone

Here's a nice video that shows the power of collective public will and the impact of correct policy. It's time for other countries to take heed...

27 October 2011

23 July 2011

Magadi Road

Some photos from the Savandurga Populaire recce, along Magadi Road...
Rolling terrain of Magadi Road
Rolling Terrain on Magadi Road, near Tavarekere

21 June 2011

Disc Compatible rear rack for the rockrider 5.3

Just installed the Topeak Super Tourist rack on the 5.3. Had to get a disc compatible rack - of which there are few available here. Decathlon didn't seem to have any so I ordered mine from Evans Cycles. The rack cost 29GBP, about Rs 2230m and customs charged about Rs 800. Here are some the pics of the installed rack...

Topeak Super Tourist DX Disc Rack

30 May 2011

Month-end Ride to Anchetti

Rode to Anchetti yesterday with a number of bikers from Bangalore. Anchetti is a small village in Tamil Nadu, just across the border with Karnataka. Its claim to fame is a beautiful waterfall very close to the town, and picturesque roads that wind through the dense forests of Krishnagiri district.Beware, though, that the excruciating climbs and the undulating terrain don't catch you unawares...

23 May 2011

Hessarghatta 55

The first ride organized by the IISc Randonneurs was a 55km populaire to Hessarghatta lake and back, through some of the most scenic roads in the region. A total of 32 riders participated, of which 24 completed within the allotted time. Details, routes and the cue sheet are here...
Some photos from the route, clicked by Bharathkumar Hegde, are below...

19 May 2011

Number of Teeth on sprockets

The sprockets have a number stamped on it indicating how many teeth it has. Here's a closeup shot. Click on the image for a larger version...

This is the Rockrider 5.3 9 speed rear cassette, with teeth numbering 32-28-24-21-18-16-14-12-11.

[Edit: The smallest cogset is 11, not 10]

16 May 2011

Hessarghatta Populaire Recce

These are some photos from a recce ride on Saturday along the proposed route for the first IISc Populaire to Hessarghatta organised by the IISc Randonneurs...

09 May 2011

Hessarghatta Loop

Did a quick loop of about 40k this morning. Wanted to go all the way to Hessarghatta lake and then return, but I wanted to get back  in time for mess, and in any case I had no motivation to go see the dirty lake anyway. I rode out towards Hessarghatta via BEL circle on Outer Ring road and Gangamma circle, then a small detour to get onto the Pipeline road which is a dead straight stretch all the way to Hessarghatta main road. The initial pat of this road runs through Air Force land, which is lush green on either side. For a long stretch thereafter there is suburban development - mostly residential, which finally gives way to agricultural land on either side. The last stretch of the road is not metaled - this is the stretch just before the intersection with Hessarghatta main road. I am sure that I took a slightly different route than I have indicated on the map; but since I had no GPS I have no way of knowing for sure. I was a bit wary of stray dogs along this road, and no doubt they of me; but i managed to pass without incident.
I'd ridden non-stop this far and I had not brought anything with me - no food or water - and hardly any cash. I suppose the only place to get decent breakfast around here is Hessarghatta village a few km further on; or somewhere near IIHR. I was not interested in either of these options- I'd rather return to IISc Mess. So I continued down past IIHR and through Jalahalli Air Force Station, and back to IISc in time for breakfast at mess...

Total Distance (Est)  : 40km
Total Time: (Est)       : 1h 40m
Avg Speed               : 24kmh

View Hessarghatta 40K Loop in a larger map

03 May 2011

Setting up Fork and Disc Brakes on the Rockrider 5.3

How to set up the Front Suspension Fork:
1. Put a zip tie around one of the stanchion tubes.
2. Sit on the bike in your normal riding posture. Ask a friend to hold you in place, and slide the zip tie as low as it can go on the stanchion tube.
3. Gently get off without exterting more pressure on the fork and handlebars.
4. Measure the distance between the zip tie and the bottom of the stanchion tube.
5. This distance must be about 20-25% of the travel of the fork. (e.g. for a 100mm fork this distance must be 20-25mm)
6. To increase this distance reduce the preload and vice versa.

How to set up the disc brakes:
1. Loosen the two allen bolts holding the brake assembly on the frame so that the assembly can move a few millemeters.
2. Press the brake lever completely. This centres the assembly on the brake disk.
3. While holding the brake lever all the way down tighten the two mounting screws. Tighten the two screws by about quarter turn alternately. Do not tighten one completely before tightening the other.
4. Ride around for about 50km to allow the brakes to wear in. Performance reaches its peak only after the discs have worn-in after about that much use.

Setting up Derailers: Excellent tutorial here from pinkbikes.com.

Update: See this post for more on Disc brake adjustment.

30 April 2011

Congratulations to the IISc Randonneurs

The Radonneurs from IISc have just received their medals for the Brevets they have completed this season... The next brevet is slated for June, and is believed to have distances of upto 1000K.

In the picture below, from left - Deepak Malani, Sreepathi Pai, M. Gokul, Nirmal Iyer, and Prakash S. (Also, not in picture - Poovaiah M. P. and Mustafa)

The new Rockrider 5.3

Got my new bike - the Rockrider 5.3 (2011) Edition. :)

29 April 2011

Riding in traffic...

On some days traffic really sucks.. and I am reminded of this prayer:

God, give me grace to accept with serenity the motorist who
cuts me up, the courage to cycle alongside him, and the
wisdom to refrain from attacking him like a rabid dog.
Rudy Niebuhr

Sourced from bikereader.com.

10 April 2011

Jalahalli 10K Loop

Did a small* loop today of about 10K to Jalahalli and back.. Fairly easy route; most of the road from IISc to Outer ring road is downhill. The Jakarbandi forest area is Air force land, with dense green vegetation on both sides of the road. Excellent route for an early morning ride.

View Jalahalli 10k in a larger map

Click here for the map.

01 April 2011


After months of struggle building a wheel, finally succeeded...

Found the following material instructive and helpful:
1. You Tube videos on how to build a rear wheel on The BikeTube
2. Sheldon Brown's  page on wheelbuilding
3. You Tube: How to Dish a rear wheel.

A more detailed report later, perhaps...

14 March 2011

Bangalore Brevets - 400k by Sreepathi Pai

Sometime in November 2010, the cyclists of Bangalore got together and formed a radonneuring club. They organise a set of timed endurance rides called the Bangalore Brevets. The most recent one was on Saturday, the 12th of March 2011. The following is a ride report by Sreepathi, a friend and fellow cyclist...

*EDIT: The rides in 2010 were all organised by the club "Bangalore Brevets". In 2011 a randonneuring club was formed in IISc as well - called the "IISc Randonneurs"