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PostPosted: Sat Jul 27, 2013 3:56 pm 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Mon Jul 15, 2013 6:48 pm
Posts: 65
Sorry if the following seems a bit of a basic question but as I have been out of the cycling circle for almost 20 years I am noticing many things have changed, some good, some not so good.

The length of time out of cycling means I am not sure what is good or bad any more among certain brands and products and there are so many brands around now that were not around then so, I would like some recommendations on the following and on anything else you recommend.

Tyres, 700x20c specifically?

Brake blocks, to suit 700c rims?

Lube's and grease?


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 27, 2013 9:52 pm 
rBoTM Winner
rBoTM Winner
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Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2012 10:18 pm
Posts: 2373
Location: California
Greetings,

The curent fashion is for wider tires 700 x 23c is about as narrow as it gets and I run this size simply because I like the way it looks on an old bike. I am not aware that you need special blocks for 700c wheels but you do need special blocks for carbon rims. Lube and grease? After 30 years of cycling I still use Phil Wood. (sometimes Tri-Flow)


Steven


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 27, 2013 10:04 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Sun Jan 06, 2013 9:51 pm
Posts: 277
Location: AL5, Herts, UK
So far as grease goes, beware the cycle specific stuff. In the '70s my bearings were happy in Castrol LM. When I (re)built my retrobike I used "Pure Bike Grease" a modern bike specific organic grease - and I don't like it. The main problem is that it is too runny and blows and/or spins out of bearings at speed. I'm not much happier with the thin white stuff that Weldtite supplies. At the end of the summer all my bearings will be rebuilt with LM.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 27, 2013 10:05 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Mon Mar 02, 2009 4:22 pm
Posts: 1481
You probably know this bit: 700c is a seemingly meaningless number that refers to the size of the wheel, a bit like how a 24" or 27" wheel is not actually 24" or 27". 20c is the width of the tyre in millemetres, so 20mm. The old size 27 x 1-1/4" tyre is about 32mm wide, for reference.

20mm is pretty narrow and the common size for fast road tyres is 23mm. There are a lot more 700x23c around then there are 700x20c. I find 23's are ok if the road surface is good, but add some pot-holes, cracks and general detritus and they can be a bit of a rough ride and a 25mm tyre is a lot more comfortable. You can get most tyres in both, so basically take your pick. £10-£15 buys you a good quality budget tyre, £25 buys you a lightweight high performance tyre. Continental Gatorskins are regarded as tough tyres with lots of puncture resistance, as are Vittoria Rubino (my choice) and Schwalbe Ultra Marathons. Schwalbe Ultremo, Continental GP4 and Michelin Pro are more at the performance end - great tyres but a bit prone to punctures if you commute.

Brake blocks - this is only my personal experience but it depends on the rim and brake caliper. If you have older Weinmann calipers then they work better with old type brake blocks, so look for rubber ones. Either the old shiny rectangular ones, or you can get a more modern looking short oval shape resin one if you have a 90's bike. If you have newer dual pivot calipers and new hard anodised alloy rims then use those long skinny cartridge brake blocks where you can replace the lining. If you're like me and use a combination of the above parts, then you might need to experiment a bit.

Lube is your choice basically. I can't see any value in using anything more than run-of-the-mill white lithium grease in bottom brackets, wheel bearings and headsets. For chains and gears, don't use WD40 because it's mainly solvent. Use a good quality bike oil and you can get different ones designed for wet or dry weather if you don't want to use a universal one. I got the 3-in-1 spray bicycle lube from Wilkinsons but I don't like it. Plus it sprays everywhere, so look for something in a normal oil bottle :D


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 10:47 am 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Mon Jul 15, 2013 6:48 pm
Posts: 65
Thanks guys.

Castrol grease is something I have used for ever and I swear by it and will continue to do so. WD40 is some I only use as a cleaner, it isn't much use as anything else.

As for the tyres, yup, I noticed limited choice in the 700 x 20c range and a huge choice in sizes above that so I will be looking at wider width tyres and will probably go with 23's.

My bike has the original Weinmann calipers but I am looking to replace them with age related Shimano 600's/Ultegra ones. A friend advised me to buy Aztec brake blocks but I haven't heard of them or I can't remember them (old age) so thought I would see what others recommend.

Once again thanks for the info guys. It's appreciated. I feel a bit like a fish out of water as I have been away from cycling for so long. It's information overload trying to catch up LOL


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 2:34 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 02, 2009 4:22 pm
Posts: 1481
I've got Aztec brake blocks on my Shimano Exage calipers, probably almost identical to 600's, so they'll work fine. Just make sure you get the correct ones for caliper brakes, because some are being sold as compatible, but are in fact V brake calipers which are a different size.


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