Choosing A Mountain BikeWritten by Andrew Caxton
How To Choose A Mountain Bike That More Fits With Your Needs
How to choose a mountain bike depends on what you are going to do with it, if all you want your new mountain bike for is going for a nice leisurely ride on canal path or a ride in woods with dog, well you wont need a full suspension downhill machine with 4 inch travel on forks and a fully articulated rear end with damping and rebound control.
Where to Start From.
If you do want to go for an easy ride in park you don’t need to spend too much, if you think you will do any off-road riding then big tread tires maybe all you need, but if you think you might try some rough stuff then you will need suspension. Gears will probably be Shimano, brakes must be V-brakes, but could be made by a few different manufacturers, all rest of MTB components will depend on how much you can spend. If you go to your local bike shop or big sports store and see what they’ve got to offer, then buy it or have look on Internet and maybe you’ll find same thing at a better price.
The Next Step Up.
So maybe you want to be a bit more adventurous, more off-road, more forest tracks and dry boulder river beds, then you’ll need something a little lighter, with suspension forks. All this will cost you more money, but will be worth it for extra enjoyment and adventure. With a better mountain bike it will have a sportier handling and because it is lighter, it will be easier to struggle up hills before you come flying down other side. The components will again be Shimano and quality will depend on how much money you can spend. V-brakes and Rapid-fire gear shifters, along with Shimano chain set, bottom bracket and headset. Handle bars, stem and seat pin should be alloy and along with a comfortable saddle you’ll be set to take to hills.
More Money, More Bike.
The next rung up on mountain bike ladder would be good enough to race on. There are many to choose from, get on net and surf bike manufacturers sites and all shop sites along with magazines for juicy photos of bikes. The top manufacturers in this price range, I would say are: - Trek, Giant, Specialized and Cannondale, these companies make nicest frames with best mountain bike parts available at price, gears will be either Shimano or SRAM, brakes could be V-brakes or cable disc brakes, both are very good and light, most of other MTB parts, of course will be Shimano and as usual get best you can afford. There are many combinations of hubs and rims to make up your wheels; hubs from Shimano and rims form Mavic are usual mix. Then you have to choose which suspension forks to put on you bike, you may not get a choice, depending on which bike you buy, main ones are Suntour, Marzocchi, Manitou, Fox, RockShox and RST, buy any of these and you wont go far wrong.
Trailering and Towing your Pontoon BoatWritten by Thomas Holley
Trailering and towering your pontoon boat doesn't have to be a dreaded chore. As a matter of fact, if you follow a few simple tips, not only will you expand opportunities you have to visit a wider variety of waterways, but you'll enjoy drive as well. Towing obviously begins with your tow vehicle. It is extremely important that you keep this vehicle in tip-top shape. Change oils and filters more often than you would under normal driving conditions. In must cases, it's a safe bet to do it twice as often as regular maintenance requires. Tire pressure is another thing to check on a regular basis. While it's not a good thing to have overflated tires, its even worse to drive a vehicle with low tires. Don't forget tune-ups, services or your cooling system. All brake lights need to be in working order.
Once you're confident that your tow vehicle is in good working order, move on to trailer itself. To reduce possibility of swaying, manufacturers recommend that tongue weight of trailer (boat included) is 5-7 percent of total tow package. (Boat, motor, trailer and all your gear.) Make sure you have adequate tie downs on your boat and trailer. If you're traveling from one state to another you may run into different regulations regarding use of tie downs in different states. Make sure you know what they are in your state and any states that you may be traveling through. Again, when towing a boat, it's always smart to err to side of safety. Four straps will allow you to conform to regulartions almost everywhere. If you use one strap to tie down bow, two straps at transom and one strap on gunwale, you'll be in excellent shape. Remember to use straps that are weather resistant and as strong as you can buy. Straps with easy lock and release buckles allow you to tighten them and control slack with a minimal effort. If your boat didn't come with a cover, buy one. It'll not only keep dust and debris off your boat when you're driving but it'll serve to hold everything in place and protect if from sun. The last thing you want to see are your seat cushions floating down highway behind you. Covers will also reduce wind resistance and thereby increase your mileage.
Once you've determined that your tow vehicle is ready to go, your boat is securely on trailer and your lights are in working order, it's time to hit road. When towing any vehicle, it's important to stay alert while driving. Although you may be very comfortable pulling trailer, other drivers have no idea what kind of an impact their actions can have on your safety. On interstate system, for example, semi-trucks can create enough of a wind to literally blow you off road. With added length and weight of your boat and trailer, it's a good idea to take things slower than you normally would without them. The added weight will decrease your stopping distances tremendously so brake early and give yourself plenty of room. The length will affect your turning ability as well as how much room you need to complete lane changes. Overcompensating in these cases is much better than cutting a turn too short or clipping front end of vehicle you just passed. When someone passes you, flashing your lights when they've cleared your vehicle is safe and polite way to go.