Ask the Expert Bike Tech


It’s so nice to have friends with incredible talent and expert knowledge.  We already have the best Sport Nutritionist on the planet as a part of our Loving the Bike team, and now we pleased to announce the inclusion of Victor Jimenez…..World’s greatest Bike Tech.  I like to call him the Bike Guru.

You can now send in all your bike mechanic or bicycle fit questions to “Ask the Bike Tech“.  Consider Victor your own private bicycle expert.

Victor knows absolutely everything there is to know about the bike and how you and your bike can best work together.  He is the driving force behind Bicycle Lab, and Karma Bicycles; and an expert at understanding bicycles and how people interact with this machine.  Victor is a presenter for USA triathlon coaching certification and works with many coaches and athletes to improve technical skills on the bike.  He is also committed to helping the bicycle to become more utilitarian here in the US and worldwide. Victor is frequently seen riding his bike with his son and a trailer full of groceries.

Here’s a video from Victor himself welcoming you all to send in your questions:


We invite you to send in your questions for Victor, and he’ll respond with a wisdom packed video like the one below that he did for our viewer, Alex.

One of our Loving the Bike viewers, Alex Tran has been having knee problems that have prevented him from riding his bike.  Here is his question for our Guru and a video with how Victor explains how to solve the problem.

Knee Pain from Cycling

At the start of October, my friend gave me his clipless pedals and shoes (I had been using platform pedals). I used the clipless pedals and shoes for about an an hour, and had to stop, because my knees were in so much pain I couldn’t pedal.

I have since gone back to using platform pedals, but the knee pain hasn’t gone away. If I exert too much effort, even when in a low gear, it starts to hurt. If I climb a hill, it starts to hurt. 

I’m desperate for any solutions. I hate sitting around at home watching the weather get progressively worse, while all my friends are out enjoying the last few days of cycling season.

I can’t really pay for a $300 bike fit, but if I could I probably would have by now, since it might have helped. I went to my doctor and he said my knees were fine, but if they were, I shouldn’t be having this problem, right?

 Here is Victor’s response:


Enjoy Your Ride

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24 Responses to “ Ask the Expert Bike Tech ”

  1. Saeed on January 6, 2021 at 12:15 am

    I am 14 but my body is weak like am skinny i weight 45 and i am short i need advice i have a moutin bike but like i dont go to moutins i just go around
    House to the beach and more some rocks some sand like that i feel my bike isnt fast and isnt good so i want to do somethings about it and i want to try to do wheeely and more but it isnt good i want to know how can i make it better faster is there some accessories that will help cleaning tips riding tips like everything i need to and its heavy for me so I can’t do a weely can maybe make it lighter maybe the tiers idk this is my insta : lol__bored i can send u my bike looks amd i hope somone can help lol yesterday was my bday so please help me 😂😂

  2. Chase Klingaman on October 14, 2020 at 12:51 pm

    Hi, this may be an unusual question but here goes: I am a member of a student engineering team looking to repurpose a hydraulic disc brake for a project and am wondering whatsort of magnitude clamping force do standard hydraulic disc brakes output on the rotor? Obviously this changes with the type of disc brake and the size of rotor, etc., but even a ballpark estimate could help me out? Like 1 to 3 kN’s or more like 6-8 kN or something else entirely? For example, one disc brake I am looking at is the Shimano BR-M640.

    I have tried searching for this information elsewhere but it doesn’t usually show up on a technical documents and reaching out to manufacturers has been fruitless. I might have to buy one and use a force gauge to find this value experimentally.
    Thanks for any and all help!

  3. Trevor on May 22, 2019 at 7:09 am

    A new question. I no nothing about bikes and have just learned to ride in my old age. I have now bought a bike but I have not got the strength in my legs to go up hills on it. I think I bought the wrong bike as it is great on the flat and a joy to ride. It only has one chaindrive large sprocket of about 7″ on the pedal end and six speeds at the back. the lowest at the back is about 4″ and if I get to even a small hill I have to get off and push it up the hill. It flys along on the flat and downhill but no good at all on evan the slightest gradient. I am not interested in speed at all just want to be able to pedal slowly up a hill without having to push the thing up the hill. It is called a city bike and I now think that it is only really for the flat. Should I try to get a smaller front driver sprocket and if so what ratio should I get. I am sorry I have not yet counted the number of teeth on either sprocket but I will do. As the front driver is a huge 7″ you can see that this is the main problem I think?

    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on May 22, 2019 at 7:17 am

      Hi Trevor, thanks for writing. Yes, city bikes are more designed for flatter terrain. Are you able to trade it in or upgrade to something that has a gear configuration that will suit your needs better? I would suggest talking to the place where you bought your bike and explain your issues and take it from there.

  4. Will C on September 6, 2017 at 3:48 pm


    Just wanted to check and see what you thought. Is it possible to take a 10 speed compact double and just change the rear mech and front connected shifter to 11 speed without changing the front mech and rings.


  5. Dennis P Rezac on July 30, 2017 at 12:09 pm

    I need some information on a couple bikes I just received/gifted… the first being MT400 Iron Horse and the other one is reflex Easton C9

  6. manas dash on July 11, 2017 at 8:52 am

    Hii am in newly in college.i want to buy a bike but confused between RC 200 and new duke plz suggest me which one i vl go for in which everyone will impress by my bike

  7. Aneesh on December 15, 2016 at 1:28 am

    I hav a r15 v2 and iam done 36k .. 4 months agi my engine bored..and now adays my bike has missing while riding. And when i stop try to start again self start didt work .. I hav to push start sparkplug and adaptor. And new ecu.. The problem still there what should i do now ?? Help me pls..

  8. Michael O'Connor on September 18, 2016 at 10:55 am

    I’m riding a 10year-old Pinarello F3-13 carbon frameset. I get an intermittent ‘clanking’ sound when I pedal. Tried a new bottom bracket, to no avail. The bike shop thinks it may be the frame creaking. I’m thinking crankset, but would hate like hell to put a new one in and not solve the problem. Any thoughts?

  9. Travis on August 17, 2016 at 2:06 pm

    I have a 2015 Trek 1.2 with a Sora 9 speed drivetrain. I need to replace my rear derailleur and my double 50/34 compact crankset as they have been bent.

    Two questions

    1. Will I run into any problems by installing a Shimano 105 5700 or 5800 rear derailleur into a 9 speed Sora system (I know I will have to adjust the limit screws)
    2. Will I run into any problems by installing a Shimano 105 5700 or 5800 50/34 compact crank into a 9 speed Sora system. Will there be any rubbing with a 9 speed chain running through a 10 or 11 speed crankset?

  10. Atin on June 24, 2016 at 10:52 pm

    sir i want my bike’s white alloy wheel to black alloy wheel when buying Honda cd dream 110 cccc. Is it possible? My email id [email protected]

  11. Atin on June 24, 2016 at 10:50 pm

    sir i want my bike’s white alloy wheel to black alloy wheel when buying Honda cd dream 110 cccc. Is it possible?

  12. carl on December 26, 2015 at 5:52 am

    Im thinking about purchasing a Giant TCR Aero, is it suitable for long rides, (60km plus.) Thanks

  13. Candace on November 17, 2015 at 2:21 am

    Hello, I drive to school but need a bike to travel around campus. The area I go to school in has extreme weather; I’m mostly concerned about the rain/ice/snow. What is a good bike that I can ride in bad weather and can easily put in my trunk regularly?

  14. reem on July 10, 2015 at 7:07 pm

    hey im looking to buy a cruiser bike to travel through the city easily and to practice, ive been looking at huffy cruisers and i wanna know which is better, a fresno cruiser bike or a panam jack cruiser bike. those two come with actual brakes and 7 speeds. or do you think i should just get a 1 speed, coastal brakes.

    note: 5’7 , 170-185 pounds

    • Darryl (@lovingthebike) on July 11, 2015 at 7:30 am

      Hi,Reem……going with the 7 speed would give you more diversity, so I suggest going with that.

  15. James on August 28, 2014 at 6:21 pm

    Wow. Bikes are really expensive these days. I had a friend who purchased a small house for less than a high end bike. I can’t imagine spending much more than $500 on a bike keeping in mind the chance it could be stolen if it looks too good. At Walmart anyway they sell the kiddy bikes for $150 or so. $300 just to determine a perfect fitting bike for me? I can’t imagine what could cost that much in determining a person’s center of gravity. Could anything good come from a $500 bike?

  16. James on August 28, 2014 at 12:58 am

    I was thinking of buying my first bike since my childhood bike 20 odd years ago (I’m 33). I would mostly like it for exercise and maybe swinging by the store to get a few items. It doesn’t need to be the most recent model. Just durable and easy to peddle and appropriate for some 6′ tall. How do I find the right bike for me without letting a sales person dictate my decision?

    • Darryl (@lovingthebike) on August 28, 2014 at 6:30 am

      Hi James, thanks for leaving this question. Usually Victor responds, but he and I recently did a Cycling 360 podcast on this question so I thought I would give you thoughts from that episode.
      Be sure to simply buy what you need. It’s easy to spend way more and get additional things not suited to your riding. But we also recommend getting a quality bike with quality components. This will allow you to enjoy the riding without the frustrations that can come with cheap parts.
      Save the money on frame composition, but go with a bike that has better quality components. We can help you with that if you like.
      You can find out more by listening to this podcast on buying a road bike:

  17. tom on April 13, 2014 at 3:34 pm

    I have a 2010 trek 3700 with shimano m151 crankset… only used it for 3 months and gear teeth are gone and causing chain to jump and skip… I was told that I abused it… didn’t know there was a way to abuse a bike… any way im looking to upgrade to sugino xd600 crankset… do I need to change the bottom bracket or will it fit?

    • Victor on April 14, 2014 at 9:26 am


      If you crossed the chain a lot it could wear the chainrings. Crossing is when you are in the big chainring and the largest cog in the back. This puts the chain at an angle and it literally shaves the teeth. It should be avoided. With a higher end crank and chainrings the same thing will happen. It may take a little longer but it will still happen.

      I talk about this quite a bit the my basic maintenance course.

      To answer your question though.

      First, I would strongly recommend that you stick with the shimano crank. The shifting will be better. You could however use the crank that you mentioned without changing the bottom bracket. From what I can tell your bike has the same length bb spindle as the one required by sugino.

  18. Alex on October 24, 2011 at 4:58 pm

    Hi Darryl,

    Well, my friend convinced me to go bike shopping. It was a nice flat ride for 15 miles, and my knee pain
    was minimal. It flared up again while I was walking around. I was able
    to buy Speedplay pedals, cleats, and shoes for $50, and the guy helped
    adjust it a bit for me. I used them on the ride back, and my knee pain
    was hardly noticeable at all! We had a heck of a time getting everything
    we bought home. Thanks so much for helping me out with my problem. I’m
    now loving my bike pain free 😉


    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on October 24, 2011 at 5:17 pm

      I’m so glad we were able to help you out with you issues.  Thanks for being a Loving the Bike reader and now an “Ask the Expert Bike Tech” satisfied customer.

  19. Jake Renfrew on October 24, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    I’m going to start putting some questions together right now.  Thanks Victor and Darryl.


    March 2024
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Sugar Alternatives for Energy and Hydration

Question: I am using the homebrew sugar formulations (sometimes added to green tea).  I am also trying to wean myself off 1/2 dose adrenalean “lip tonic delivery system” (biorhythm brand- caffeine, hoodia g, synephrine, yohimbe) capsule for energy.

My question is other than juice, can you suggest modifications in lieu of table sugar for energy and hydration.


Both raw/organic honey or agave can work great in the homebrew (substitute in the same quantities for the sugar, or to taste), but you do have to shake well in order to make sure they don’t settle out.  Have you tried either of these?  Also, make sure to use at least the minimum amount of salt recommended in the homebrew as the temps rise, you need the sodium replacement if you’re sweating.

Sports Drink Homebrew

Please send us your questions for our Expert Sports Nutritionist, Kelli Jennings to “Ask the Sports Nutritionist“. Kelli Jennings is a Registered Dietitian with a passion for healthy eating, wellness, & sports nutrition. For more information go to

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