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michael_lambert

michael_lambert

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michael_lambert's Passions

Road Biking

michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on March 27, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Bought this to facilitate cleaning of my chain. I have two bikes with Shimano Ultegra 6800 11 speed and have had no issues with chain skip. The chain has held through several races and has held up to three to four rides on the trainer a week. The only thing I have had to watch is that when cleaning, one of the pieces continues to fall off the chain and could get easily lost. Beyond that, has worked as described.

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on September 19, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This machine works. Biggest pro is that it is quiet. Use it with the CC Merlin, as well as a CAAD 12. No complaints with fit. Sits in one place in the house and so not a lot of moving. Have moved it to the garage (Texas) for heat acclimatization and it isn't convenient to carry, but not impossible. Has a one-up on other trainers in that you can use it without plugging it in. I use this with Trainer Road and it works. Erg mode is relentless opportunity for adaptation. Had it for about a year, putting about 4-7 hours on it a week, no issues. Strong recommendation for those looking for a quiet, reliable, accurate indoor trainer.

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on August 19, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I am a longtime Garmin user for head units. My Garmin 810 recently started crapping out and I decided to do some research on the newest units out there. My expectation was to upgrade to the Garmin 820, but was surprised when I ran across this product.

What I love about this unit is the ease of setup and use compared to my Garmin 810. The companion app is outstanding and makes setup and configuration a breeze. The unit paired easily with my wi-fi, found all of my sensors (shows battery status of each, which is awesome), and was easy to install on the bike.

What really sets this apart to me from my Garmin 810 is how thoughtful all the menus are. For example, I ride early and turning the back light off and on is essentially a two button procedure. The post ride breakdown is not as detailed as other services (i.e., TrainingPeaks), but I actually like the way the information is displayed over Garmin's and TrainingPeak's apps.

I also love that you can easily adjust what you see on the screen while riding. If I want to focus less on power and just ride, it is easy to decrease the data fields on the screen while riding to one or two fields (e.g., speed, distance). Also, configuring data fields in the app is extremely simple and doesn't require all the menus that the Garmin 810 did.

I rarely use my head unit for navigation. I have not used navigation with the Bolt, but I have read other reviewers say that it is cannot do re-routing should you take a wrong turn. Others have also reviewed the navigation feature negatively due to the black and white screen, but I don't think this will be an issue for me.

Finally, the size of this thing is brilliant. It is small and light, and I prefer that over the heavier, clunkier Garmin 810 (even though it was a pretty good size too).

The one thing that may be a negative for some is the handlebar mount. It is plastic, and even though it installed easily, I can see some people stripping it in their tightening zeal. Also, I run a Arx II Team stem, and it is slightly (<2mm) off center. If you run a chunky stem, it would look weird way off center of the stem. Also, it can only be mounted left of the stem, so if you are a stickler about this.... The combo out-front mount and unit are supposed to be more aero, but if you choose to go another route, there are still plenty of great options (included stem mount, K-Edge, etc.).

I don't have the Garmin 820 or 520, so I can't compare this unit to those. However, what got me to buy this one over those was the reviews about the app (which I wanted after dealing with the Garmin 810 for so long) and the price. I also have to give a shout out to Kyle Brown at CC for helping me with the decision and purchase--Thanks!

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on April 22, 2017

3 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I want to love these gloves because they have a lot of good features. The padding works great (for me) and I like the materials. The sizing guide was accurate for me. The biggest problem is that there is a seam that runs along the ridge between your index finger and thumb. Seems like a terrible place to put a seem. As the ride gets longer, the irritation gets worse.

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on April 15, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This bag works great as one stop shop for all your kit. It has a wet section on the left that is divided into two sections. I put my shoes and kit after a ride on that side. The other side is an expandable pocket for a helmet. The side pocket is advertised as a pocket for sunglasses, but it really isn't large enough for that. I put my Garmin in that pocket and keep my sunglasses inside my helmet so it doesn't matter. The main compartment has space for a small pump and several sets of dry kit. I have packed a jacket, warmers (arm/leg), gloves, two sets of bibs and jerseys, socks, hat, sunscreen, chamois cream, towel, and the list goes on--all of this with the shoes and helmet in. What I love about this bag is that the side pocket for food/bottles can take up to three 25 oz bottles. I use 21 oz Camelback bottles without any issues. The pocket essentially guarantees the bottles won't fall out. Maybe not as much access, but better for travel. There is one more side pocket that I keep electronics and knickknacks. I wish this pocket were a bit bigger, but overall it works. This bag feels a bit too big for just your casual weekend ride, and maybe too small for an epic week long bike ride, but it hits the sweet spot for being able to fit everything you would possible need. I use this for everyday riding and I never forget anything.

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on July 23, 2016

3 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This is a nice cap. It works well to keep sweat out of my eyes (and I sweat a lot), and is mostly comfortable. On long rides (i.e., >60 miles) I start feeling the band, but it doesn't leave marks. The part that I don't like is that it is not form fitting on my head. I wear a medium helmet and this is loose on my head. Does the job but doesn't look cool. Still, would recommend for large helmets.

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on June 10, 2016

2 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I ride exclusively in LG products. This jersey does not compare well to other Mondo/Course lines LG puts out. My first complaint is that the arms are very tight. This isn't a problem while riding, but it makes putting it on and off a hassle. I have ten small LG Course/Mondo jerseys and this is the only one that fits this way. I wouldn't mind the tight arms as much, but the core of the jersey is not next-to-skin/racer fit. It is looser, which is weird. The zipper is also unusual for a quality LG product. It is thick and this causes it to bunch up weirdly in the front during rides. Paired with the bib shorts for this kit, it rides up on the slippery material of the bibs which worsens that bunched up look/feel. Finally, the material of the core is mesh and doesn't feel good against the neck. I have to call this one a big fail. For the Double Up deal CC put on, I can see buying the combo as a training/casual ride kit, but I wouldn't recommend this as your go to jersey.

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on June 10, 2016

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I am 5'6" and 135 lbs and the small fits well. I have been wearing LG products for the last five years and this is not the best, but it is still pretty good. Other reviewers commented on the chamois. This is LG's best (most expensive) chamois and I like it. The bibs are kind of iffy. They are mesh with the part that rests on your shoulders being this elastic band of sorts. The part of the band that rests on your shoulders has some sort of tackiness that keeps it in place. It is certainly different than other LG products, but I didn't notice that it was loose or that it moved. All I can say is that I haven't noticed the bibs during rides. My one niggle is that it has a massive tag in the bag that can be uncomfortable. I don't understand that choice. The color scheme isn't my favorite, but it doesn't look bad. As others have said, the shorts are compressive, and I do like that. I have to comment on the jersey for these bib shorts and say that it is not good. So by themselves, I can recommend these, but not as an entire kit.

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on April 16, 2016

My New Favorite
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I used to be a Lizards fan. However, I wanted something less tacky. So I tried this tape in white (plain), and love it.
First, this tape is thin and almost has a fake leather quality to it. I am not a fan of thick or comfy tape and look for the thinnest stuff out there. This fits the bill.
A lot of reviewers here mention the lack of stretchiness, and I have to agree. However, it stands up to being pulled tight very well. I wrapped 3T Aeronova bars (40cm) and had plenty to spare. Those are shallow bars, so if you have large deep drop bars, it may be an issue.
The other thing to love about this tape is that it is very forgiving for the beginner. I had trouble getting the tape around the bend on my bars and it took a couple of tries. The tape unwound and went back on very nicely and looked good after multiple tries.
If you are looking for a thin, simple tape, I would give these a try.

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on April 16, 2016

Nice Bars
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I will start off by saying I am not sure how aero these bars are. However, the work well in so many ways that I don't really care if they are.
These replaced a 3T Tornova 42 Team handlebar that felt a bit wide for me (5'6", 135lb, 41" at the shoulders). I wanted to try a shallow drop bar and these were on sale so I thought I would give them a shot.
Other websites speak to these bars not running true to size. Some say they are narrower than advertised (by 2cm) and create a longer reach compared to standard bars (also by 2cm). Depending on how you measure the bars, they might be slightly slimmer. I bought a 40cm and at the hoods, measuring from the outer aspect, they are 40 cm. As far as reach, they are slightly longer. I had a 100mm stem I switched out with my usual 120mm, but the loss of the 20mm, even with the reach felt wrong. So I am not sure how much these will stretch you out. Just be aware that the reach may put you out a bit further.
Installation was simple. They come with tubing routed through the bars. I just taped my Di2 and break housing (electric tape) and gently pulled it through without any snags. If you are routing Di2 wires through, I recommend going with them first as the holes are snug and it can be hard to route the wire past the rigid cable housing.
It wasn't hard to put the shifters in a comfortable position and the drops have multiple comfortable positions.
The tops are something I am not sure everybody will love. For smaller riders (like myself), the tops are wide enough that gripping them with thumbs under can be uncomfortable. I ride with my thumbs on the tops anyway so not a big deal. The reason I question the aero tag on these bars is that the foil section on these bars is relatively small compared to the whole thing. If you spend a lot of time on the tops, I would get my hands on them before committing. What I really like about the drops is that they slant down. This creates a pocket of sorts that is very comfortable if you are leaning on the drops.
Taping the bars was a bit challenging. Granted, I am no expert but I found getting around the bend in the bar a bit fiddly. Also, there is some question if you want to tape the whole bar or leave it short. I compromised and went halfway. I don't spend a lot of time on the tops, so leaving half the hand space untaped won't be an issue. I did want to tape where my forearms rest because I found it a bit slippery when sweating.
Another thing to like about this bar compared to other aero bars out there is that it has plenty of space for head unit mounts, GoPros, etc., giving you plenty of options.
Overall, I really like these bars. The flat, wide tops may not be for everyone, and the extra reach is something to consider, but I really like them. On top of all of that is that they look damn sexy and will make any bike prettier.

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on March 22, 2016

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Just bought this and have not ridden in it. Thought I would post quick sizing info. I am 5'6", 135, 28" waist, 29" inseam. Bought small. Racer fit and feels tight. Feels awkward standing up but feels right in riding position. Looks sharp and am excited about it. Will post if I get to ride before next winter b

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on September 7, 2015

3 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These gloves are comfortable and do the job that any good glove should. However, the black bleeds from these gloves like crazy. On humid rides where I sweat a lot, my palms come out of these black. On average, I have noticed that it takes around 24 hours for the dye to wash out of the hands. I would only purchase these if you are not concerned about the dye and I would definitely recommend hand-washing these in cold water by themselves.

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michael_lambert

michael_lambertwrote a review of on September 7, 2015

Nice Wheels
4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I have about 430 miles on these since purchasing them in August. I bought them on sale, and for that price, I think they are pretty decent wheels.
As a rider, I am 135 lbs, 5'6"and my average group ride tends to be in the 20 mph range. I live in the DFW, Texas area which is relatively flat, which is probably a big reason why I like the wheels.
For those in the Texas area, I rode HHH 2015 and the Goatneck this year on these wheels. My average for the Goatneck was 24.3 and my average for HHH was 23. I felt like the wheels performed very well.
With regards to how they handle, I will start with crosswind handling. I train at the Texas Motor Speedway (a 5 mile loop) which exposes you to consistent wind profile. I have ridden these in crosswinds up to 16 mph and can say that for the most part, they handle pretty good. At wind speeds greater than 10 mph, I do feel a little tug on the front wheel. I find that riding at speeds around 20-23, the effect is far less noticeable. I am not a heavy rider and I still would choose these wheels for most rides.
In the other qualities you look for, I think they perform well. I have not detected any flex in the wheels (although at my weight and max power, I couldn't flex a cheaper wheel). They corner well and I feel like they hold speed well too.
A lot of people have mentioned the squealing brakes. For me this is not an issue. They do squeal with heavy breaking. However, given that I don't do a lot of descending or technical rides, I have only noticed it here and there.
If you live in an area where you have to rely on your brakes a lot and you don't want to hear the squeal,.... That said, in a lot of the T-shirt rides I participate in, I have heard much more expensive carbon tires squealing in the bunch.
I haven't tried any different brake pads, so I can't speak to other brands working better. I might try a different brand once these wear out. I do think Mercury could do better by their customers by doing some research into what other brands of pads won't void the warranty. It feels a bit like a scam to have to buy their expensive pads that a lot of people feel are poor quality.
I have no complaints about brake performance either. I have never felt under-powered when it comes to stopping quickly with these. The caveat again is I don't ride a lot of technical or up/down type rides. I have also not used these when wet, so can't speak to their performance in the rain.
These are heavier than advertised. That said, they still are not very heavy. Without going into an impossible apples-to-apples comparison, these wheels were 285 grams heavier than my Dura Ace Shimano C24 clinchers.
Finally, the wheels do look good. I would prefer to not have the white logo, especially since the frame has so many white decals on it as well. However, they do look racy (to me).
For the price and performance, I think these wheels are a good deal. I would buy these wheels if you are unsure if you want deeper rim carbon wheels (even if you don't like them, for less than $1,000...). I would buy these wheels if you want performance without paying too much (I think a lot of people who have reviewed here like the way the wheels perform).

I wouldn't buy these wheels if you have the money for better ones. I wouldn't buy these wheels if a squealing wheel is going to make you regret buying it.
I think someone said it best when they said that for 85-90% performance of better wheels at 50% the price makes these a good deal. My two cents.

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