Garmin Home Screen Tip

I stumbled across some great advice today for Garmin users – forgive me if you already knew this.

I saw that it was possible to add some custom text to the home screen on my Garmin Edge 800 – this is ideally a great location for your telephone number or ICE (In case of emergency) details. So here goes:

1. Connect your Garmin device to your computer and open it up in the explorer (Windows) window.

Garmin Edge custom screen

2. In the root menu locate and double click the “startup” file. It should open into Notepad as this is a TXT file.

Garmin Edge Start Up File

3. Now see the where the text says <display = 0> , change this number. The number is seconds and is the number of seconds the display will stay on to show your message. 10 might be enough, but only if someone is expecting a message so I would make this 20 or more as its a lot more obvious then.

4. Under the line <!– Type your message on the next line –> you should, type your message!

5. Save the file. Disconnect your device and re-boot – it should look something like this. As you can see, I’ve had my Garmin for some time, don’t waste any time and update yours right away, these are expensive gadgets to lose.

Garmin edge screen shot

I am lead to believe that this process compatible with the following units: Garmin Edge 510, Edge 520, Edge 800, Edge 810, Edge 1000, and Touring/Touring Plus.

Looking for a Way Out

West Kennet Long Barrow
West Kennet Long Barrow

Hot on the heels of yesterdays amazing video from Chris Akrigg, comes a TimFromWales production. Hold on to your hats cos this is going to amaze! Well not really – it was just a little pedal out to the West Kennet Long Barrow for a cup of tea.

I am really enjoying the Genesis CDF and am wondering why I didn’t get a cyclocross bike sooner.  I am able to ride to most of the places I can locally on my mountain bike, but quicker and the added advantage of the skinny wheels (never thought I’d hear myself saying that) is that I can hit the road to link up trails at a much faster pace.  Its the future!

This week I bought an Alpkit dry bag so I could carry my tea brewing kit – also from Alpkit (Mytimug & Kraku stove). While these are small items, they don’t quite fit in my saddle bag, so I stuffed the Alpkit Airlok with stove, mug, milk etc, extra layer and GoPro attachments and went for a little spin this morning.

The 5L Airlok Extra fits neatly between the drop bars, and is also handy to throw over your shoulder like a messenger bag. The bag is better when stuffed full rather than letting the contents sag and rattle – but this is simply some advice on my part rather than any sort of criticism.

I now have a burning desire to bikepack and I think the Genesis CDF will do the job just fine!

Anyway you have waited long enough and I have stalled until Youtube has processed my video. Here it is and watch out for my very own Allez Allez Allez moment from some actual French people too!

Moove Torque Flat Pedals

Moove MTB Torque Flat Pedals

Haven’t written a review for a while, but finally I have some new gear to share my thoughts on. Flat pedals are a pretty key part of your MTB set up: without them how are you going to rotate the cranks, to turn the wheels, to climb that hill, so you can come down again with a big smile on your face?

My Alpitude was crying out for a bit of bling and so what better way than to add some orange pedals. I will admit that my first stop was SuperStarComponents – having already had a more than satisfactory experience with their Nano Thru Pin Flats there was no doubt I was going to start with their pedals. However, no orange in stock! Time to moove on.

I had seen some favourable review of the Moove pedals and they looked pretty similar so I gave them a call and ordered a pair of the Torque Thru Pin Flats.

A few twists of an Allen key and they are fitted nicely and spinning freely. First impressions were the same as with Superstar – sharp grippy pins, mean my feet won’t slip but they are gonna hurt if they catch!

I’ve had a few rides now and combined with my 5.10 Freeriders the grip is as sure as I expected and had read. The fresh pins are even providing some much needed grip for my worn Teva Links.

Bottom line if you are looking for some pedals and £40 is your budget, give Moove a try – you won’t be disappointed.

Here’s the official word and a link to the Moove website:

Our best selling pedal. Large thin (17mm) concave platform pedal for better grip. It is possible to get a titanium upgrade version. Replaceable pins and bearings available. Torque Pedals (thru pin) Price is for a pair of pedals ie. 2 pedals.

Sealed Cartridge Bearings.
Durable rubber lip seals.
Replaceable pins. – See Pedal parts n our site
CNC machined for improved strength-to-weight ratio
2 x high quality DU bushings & 4 x sealed cartridge bearings
Body: 6061-T6
Platform size: 94 x 100 mm
Axle: CroMo
Weight of 2 pedals: 470g (with thru pins)

http://www.moovebikeco.com/torque-flat-pedals-thru-pin

UberBike Narrow Wide ChainRings

20150528-133531.jpg

Seeing fellow riders with only one chainring I often wondered how it was possible and marvelled at their superior levels of fitness for managing without the gears that I held so dear to my heart.

Until quite recently I hadn’t even considered that I would convert a bike to a single chainring and go 1×10. I suppose it started when I bought a Genesis Alpitude that had a 2×9 set up and soon after saw a great MTB article clearly demonstrating that compared to a 1×10, my 3×10 set up had around 14 redundant gears! I started to think what life might be like without the Granny Ring.

A trip to Cwmcarn almost sealed the deal for me. A lap of the Cafall trail in the middle ring felt like an enormous achievement, until after a rest and some lunch I struggled to make the Twrch climb IN the Granny Ring. But it was enough to plant a seed and get me thinking. A few more rides, some manning up and staying out of the lowest gears soon had me convinced.

Both front and rear derallieurs on my Giant Trance were at the end of their life, this was the opportunity to make the change so the shopping started.

Narrow wide single chainrings are available for a pretty small sum, I opted for UberBike as they had recently added single chainrings for only £24.99 and they had a variety of colours.

The only other item I needed to change was the rear mech and it was an easy choice to select a Shimano SLX Shadow+. Add a new chain, cassette, gear cable and bottom bracket for good measure and the bike had a whole new drive train.

200km later and I haven’t dropped a chain (thanks to the Shadow+ I am sure) the chain slapping has all but disappeared and I am managing to climb those local hills with no assistance from the Granny ring!

It hurts at times, but I am learning to pedal in higher gears so that I can rest in what is left of my lower gears. This means I am propelling myself forward quicker and more efficiently.

Only having one shifter simplifies gear changes and removes the mud catching front derailleur from the bike. A few rides in and I am not even thinking about the lower gears, I have just adapted to ride with what I have and the great colours available from Uberbike have helped keep both bikes looking great!

20150528-133629.jpg

Yes within a week of converting my full suspension Giant Trance I applied the same logic to my steel hard tail Genesis Alpitude… No looking back now!

The expander sprocket is much talked about and I could certainly benefit from using one at a trail centre or for bigger mountain rides, but for local riding I can cope and improve my fitness without one.

If you are looking to convert to 1×10 or are simply in need of a new front chain ring, you could do a lot worse than shopping with Uberbike.

Its like mountain biking but different

Genesis CDF
Genesis CDF

Road biking doesn’t appeal to me, but I have heard from enough people about the benefits to be convinced of them. However, I have no desire to spend hours and hours travel mile after mile pedaling along the road to gain these benefits. I am also not built for lycra – I am not sure any man is!

I am happy to ride on the road to link up trails and I am happy to ride the occasional cycle tack and canal path. So, for sometime I have been looking at cyclocross bikes. The idea being that I could maybe go a bit further on the road on a bike designed for the job and increase those all important base miles to help with fitness.

Yesterday I picked up my very first (yes in my entire life) bike with dropped bars. I was a little apprehensive today as I took to the road on a familiar route with both on and off sections including a steep local climb. Apprehensive because I wore SPD shoes for the first time ages, found myself behind bars half the width of my MTB bars and where on earth are the brakes!?

The flat pedaling was fun, as I found my average speed creeping higher and noticed the absence of the usual resistance and zipping sound of my MTB tyres. Since getting home I noticed how all my local Strava sections involving tarmac had been beaten and I had 12 new personal bests – including on the climb mentioned above.

Some basic off road riding was surprisingly easier than I thought it would be. Putting that down to a comfortable ride on a steel frame. I tackled some roots, gravel, single track and a bridal way – and I loved it.

This is going to be a fun addition to the bike shed.

New Beginnings

Specialized rockhopper 29er

The 29er has gone. Yes my Sepecialized Rockhopper has left the building and is off to pastures new – somewhere in Swindon!

I’ve had a love/hate relationship with that bike for a few years, never quite deciding if I enjoyed riding it or not. One minute I was having a great time riding cross country routes or commuting, the next I was gingerly descending a local trail perched right over the bars.

The thing is I was trying to use it for too much and I have learnt more so in the last 6-12 months that bike geometry really makes a difference and the differences exist for a reason.

The Rockhopper was an XC, possibly race oriented set up with a relatively steep head angle and when I tried to ride terrain that I also rode on my full suspension Giant, I felt a little unbalanced. So, to save the Giant mostly for trail centres I decided an alternative bike was required for local riding and a Genesis Alpitude turned up for sale right on my doorstep. Its slack head angle and long travel fork has been great fun and the 29er has been gathering dust.

Occasionally using it for some short road trips into the shops, I was finding a use for it, but something was nagging at the back of my head. Maybe, just maybe I should buy a road bike?

For the last year I have been tempted by the cyclocross idea, not racing but the idea of a road bike that I could take, well off road! And no sooner did I start to think more seriously about this in the last few weeks did yet another Genesis turn up, this time a CDF and on eBay.

So the funds have been raised by selling the Rockhopper and I will be picking up a “new” bike within the next few days. Opening a new chapter in my cycling with a Cyclocross or CX bike.

I am sure this will provide me with ample material for new photos and blog posts. Now I must go and clean my hard tail after last nights little ride where it got surprisingly muddy.

muddy Maxxis. HighRoller

Tea and Cake

tea and cake stop
A Brew with a View

We became a total cycling cliche today.

After about 30km of riding and thinking it was time to track back we came across a new trail feature on one of our local routes.

We haven’t been out locally as a group on a Sunday morning for a while and this was the first time we had ridden to Beckhampton on ride in a good few weeks.

It’s not that far from home really and its never really a highlight on our rides other than the a few little rooty features that we have a little play on from time to time. However today we all stopped and were very excited to see a little trailer selling tea and cake!

It’s pathetic really but the novelty factor of it suddenly appearing as if it were some sort of oasis in a desert meant we all had to partake in the tea and cake…

What a cliche, but who cares, let a just hope they keep it up and are there for the rest of the summer.

Mostly mountain biking musings and some other stuff…

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