I Posted a question about bicycles at TGO and it was closed and migrated to another site.

Bikes are in scope at both bicycles.stackexchange.com and TGO

How does it benefit TGO to migrate inscope questions to other sites?

  • My advice is that this discussion seems to be going now where so it would probably be best if all involved just dropped it. Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 15:57
  • @CharlieBrumbaugh I appreciate your observations, I will leave it for now. Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 16:01
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    It benefits the stackexchange network to place a question on the site best fitted for the question. It is not just about TGO.
    – paparazzo
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 16:06
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    Since meta questions are sometimes voted on to agree or disagree, I want to make it clear that I +1 not out of agreement with James' original thought that it should have stayed on TGO, but rather because it was an excellent question which shined a light on a (apparently) controversial issue and sparked a great set of discussions.
    – Loduwijk
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 16:46

4 Answers 4


That question is just really not on topic here. Or if it is, only marginally.

It is fully on topic on Bicycles, and is likely to get the best answer there, as that sure has many cyclists, at all levels from amateurs to professional, and many skilled bicycle mechanics.

It is in the best interest of the poster (likely to give the best answer) and in the best interests of SE (move it to where it will get the best qualified answerers)


It helps both you and TGO.

While I disagree with Rory that your bicycle question was not on topic here, I agree with everything else Rory says.

  • It is better suited to bicycles.SE.
  • It will get better answers there. (I was in the middle of making an answer to it when I got the "you can no longer answer this question because it closed" prompt while typing, and I haven't checked it since but the answers you get will likely be more qualified than mine was)
  • It helps you more.

Thanks Rory for helping me understand this better: So, bicycles are considered off topic on TGO (according to the bicycle discussion linked on the "big list of on-topic", though it has little discussion: feel free to join in there), but not for any lack of TGO leanings. It appears bicycles were decided to be off-topic specifically because of the existence of bicycle.SE. If it were not for the existence of bicycle.SE, then your question would have been considered on topic. So it's not off topic in the spirit of TGO, but it is virtually off topic by pure fiat (of no one person by themselves).

Now, here's the part that you will be more interested in...

It helps TGO because the question is still here. The question is in our queue, and it just happens to link to its place on bicycles.SE. So it is helping both sides, and TGO benefits from having its TGO members seeing bicycles.SE expertise even while clicking questions here on TGO.

Now that does beg other questions about how the site mechanics treat the question since it was migrated. Will it show up in the "hot" section for activity gathered elsewhere? Don't know, but I guess probably not. Will it show up in searches here? In the appropriate lists of questions for those tags? Etc.. (Those last two I could easily figure out once I'm done typing this and submit, but the point is that, yes, there are issues to consider).

These other questions/issues, however, are more an issue with how SE is implemented. So if migrating it from a site where people would find it useful to one where people are more focused on that topic causes problems for the people of the first site, that is more an issue that we should bring up in the main SE meta and try to make feature requests to improve SE in general. That is, assuming you believe the issue is important enough to warrant a feature request. In the case of "hot" questions, for example, you might still see it in the "hot network questions" listing on the right side of every SE page.

  • You have some good points, and some that have issues. Notice that the current top voted answer to the migrated post is by a user with ONE post on bicycles and 25 posts on TGO my post is not "really here" as if you click on it you are taken directly to to the post on bicycles. Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 13:15
  • I am not seeing anything about the migration that helps me or TGO. Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 13:16
  • As I said in the chat linked from my answer, we have a long meta discussion on scope: outdoors.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/1025/…
    – Rory Alsop Mod
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 13:44
  • @RoryAlsop yes we do and it does not list anything bikes as clearly off topic. Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 13:47
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    @JamesJenkins I think your post being on bicycle.SE did help you. The top voted answer is not always the best. Many people think "It's 100% fine no issue whatsoever," but I keep hearing from the most experienced people that's not true, and I was going to say as much when I was originally typing an answer to your Q. Check out the answer by Daniel R Hicks, especially the first paragraph. I think he overstates it slightly, but what he says is, I think, true. You can do it upside down, but it might be slightly off. I had issues once on a picky bike until I found that out.
    – Loduwijk
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 14:09
  • @JamesJenkins And by the same token, it helps TGO as others can now see those good comments and other points of view by other bike people. Even if your bike seems completely fine after doing it upside down, the top answer there is still not completely correct. In my case, my malfunctions were intermittent: before fixing: every few minutes, after upside-down-fix (adjustments between outings): 0.5-2 times per outing, after rightside-up-fix: so few I don't remember. Survivor bias (last time it would have worked upside-down too?)? Maybe, or maybe upside-down is slightly less precise.
    – Loduwijk
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 14:15
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    @RoryAlsop Though I agree with the migration and think it was best for all parties involved (James, whether James thinks so or not, TGO, and bike>SE), I think that the scope argument specifically is weak and not supported by meta, not even that list you link to. And even if it was on that list, all that means is that someone decided to put it on that list... someone putting it on that list does not necessarily mean community agrees or that it is suddenly canon. But haven't we said somewhere that "Your question fits perfectly with an SE that is very specifically about what you're asking" ...
    – Loduwijk
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 14:20
  • ... is virtually an off-topic reason, even if it would otherwise be on-topic? I thought we said that somewhere just so that TGO didn't encompass everything and make entire SE sites elsewhere obsolete.
    – Loduwijk
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 14:21
  • To be fair, every item on that list is there because we exhaustively discussed it - sometimes for months :-)
    – Rory Alsop Mod
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 14:55
  • Yeah - mods check it on occasion too, and as long as you have view edit permissions you can look at the edit history
    – Rory Alsop Mod
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 15:09
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    @RoryAlsop You have convinced me. Still, bicycles are not listed as off-topic. At best, mountain-biking is listed as "Contentious/Unanswered". Ah! And digging there, I see it was put there because a meta discussion in which "bicycles.SE is better suited" was the argument. I think that supports both our narratives: If it weren't for bicycles.SE we would consider it on-topic, but it is considered off-topic - not for any lack of TGO theme but simply because bicycles.SE is better suited. With caveat that mountain-biking Qs they can't answer (because TGO-specific theme) could still go here. Yes?
    – Loduwijk
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 15:26
  • @RoryAlsop Thank you. I edited to reflect our discussion. And deleted a bunch of my comments to de-clutter.
    – Loduwijk
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 15:42
  • @JamesJenkins Interesting. Especially "it just isn't about the outdoors". I have to simply flat out disagree with that. And the meta post that Rory linked to supports the idea that it is (potentially) off topic very specifically because of the existence of bike.SE. I think we just have to agree to (vehemently) disagree with Rory on that one. If it weren't for bike.SE and your post was just left closed, it would be worth putting up a huge fuss over, since biking (especially offroad/mountain biking) is just as TGO as hiking and even takes place on similar trails. But as it's just migrated...
    – Loduwijk
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 16:11
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    ... I think it is not worth that fight, as long as this does not set a precedent that "bikes are not outdoors" or that off-road/mountain biking is any less of a TGO issue at heart than is hiking.
    – Loduwijk
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 16:11

The question (post has automatically been locked & deleted by Community‚ô¶):

Title: Adjusting derailleur with bike upside down, is it ok?

I need to adjust the derailleur on my bike, I don't have a bike stand. I have three options for pedaling while adjusting the the derailleur.

  • Turn the bike upside down, balancing on the handlebars and seat.

  • Tip it up on the kick stand

  • Lay it completely on its side (if no kickstand)

Upside down is easiest, but it seems like that might not be the best choice. Is it ok to adjust the derailleur when the bike is upside down? Is one method clearly better then the others?

Assuming bicycles on topic on TGO at all, this is clearly a bicycle only question. It has no relation to the outdoors or even a specific type of outdoor cycling, rather it is about the "mechanics" of optimally working on your bicycle. As @Kevin said, this is like asking about fixing cars on TGO, even if my SUV is an outdoor piece of equipment or used outdoors.

That being said, it's been pointed out that Bicycles are off topic because we have an awesome Bicycles Stack Exchange, so why not encourage our high-quality resource goals by populating Bicycles.SE with this helpful (seriously) question?

I have to say, I'm disappointed in the controversy created, especially by a high-reputation member. Mods are responsible to the community and I appreciate the opportunity to review my actions, but this could have been avoided by a better understanding of our scope. Indeed, we've all learned a little bit more by this discussion.

  • First my question developed while trailing riding without access to proper tools, had it been closed that could have been clarified, which assuming bikes are on topic at TGO would have arguably made it in scope. But because it was migrated, that option is disallowed. Commented Oct 3, 2018 at 13:22
  • Second; A clarifying question; Are you suggesting that the existence of Bicycles.SE makes all questions about bikes out of scope at TGO? Commented Oct 3, 2018 at 13:24
  • To answer your question.about why I would post a bicycle question at TGO instead of Bicycles.SE, I disagree about it being an awesome site. The reasoning does not, matter, I just prefer not to post new questions or answers at the site. Commented Oct 3, 2018 at 13:27
  • Wanted to make sure you saw this outdoors.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/1613/… Commented Apr 6, 2020 at 18:48

There have been several claims that the original question was off topic. But on examination none of them appear to be supported by community consensus.

In the end Rory has argued, that a moderator who has not visited TGO META for 5 months has made a decision, so....

Where we are now, one mod migrated it after a couple of flags. I agree with that migration 100%.

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It is obvious to me that studiohack made the wrong choice in migrating this question as out of scope, and I have no ill will about that. We all make mistakes but we also have the opportunity to correct and adjust for them.

  • Of note you can not flag on the question under discussion, it is not possible. Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 15:47
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    Car camping is on-topic, but should that mean we accept any question about car maintenance?
    – Kevin
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 17:32
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    @Kevin Car camping probably constitutes a very low percentage of what cars are used for. Cars are not known as a way to get out and experience and appreciate the great outdoors in the way that bicycles are. Your analogy is not entirely wrong to make, but it does drift even further away from TGO - a better argument would be to find an analogy that is closer to TGO than bikes but which is obviously off topic. Also, if there was no site for car maintenance help, then I would say the answer to your comment is "Maybe, let's discuss it further."
    – Loduwijk
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 17:45
  • eh, I feel like most biking is about fitness and/or commuting rather than mountain / trail biking. Just because it's usually done outside doesn't mean all aspects are on-topic. If generic bike maintenance is on-topic, it's on the very edge of it.
    – Kevin
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 17:51
  • @Kevin Maybe the more correct action would be to query the OP for clarification on why a borderline question might be better here or there? related post Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 18:00
  • Not to rile a settled topic, but I've just now seen this, in spite of several efforts to notify me (apologies!), it seems that the notifications didn't make it to my SE inbox. I am on SE pretty regularly, but as mentioned, my meta participation is not as good.
    – studiohack
    Commented Oct 2, 2018 at 18:01
  • @studiohack not riled, disappointed a bit that you don't participate in meta. On this site, there is a lot that happens here. Commented Oct 2, 2018 at 18:16
  • I appreciate, @JamesJenkins, the no "ill-will", thanks for that, btw! I try to participate where needed but don't always check regularly, especially since I have a lot of faith in the "community governed" aspect of the site.
    – studiohack
    Commented Oct 2, 2018 at 18:18

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