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We went on our annual pilgrimage to Maine a week+ ago, and saw a hurricane tide, forded a 30' wide stream deeper than our door seals at its deepest point, and I explored a road through the woods that didn't involve a ford just in case.


I came here to talk about my (road/commuter) bike. [livejournal.com profile] desireearmfeldt just replaced her bike with a commuter having an internally-geared hub and she's riding much more smoothly than she used to; whether it's drive train, frame fit, or what I don't know. But she's still not happy with the way her handlebars ride. So today we took a little trip to Harris Cyclery in Newton, after she got fed up with trying other places. I headed from there on a nice ride through along 117 through Waltham, Weston, Lincoln, and Maynard; I then turned north on 27 to S. Acton and Acton before turning off on Carlisle Rd to West St., Pope Rd., and Strawberry Hill Rd. This last bit is always a lovely ride and takes you in and out of Acton, Carlisle, and Concord. Eventually hit Monument St., and headed back to 225, stopping for ice cream (I was bonking at this point around mile 43) in Bedford before taking the Minuteman home.

But things seems awfully squeaky and hard to push. And I couldn't get my left shoe out of the clip when I arrived home! I had to untie the shoe and take my foot out. After some maintenance I made a few nasty discoveries:

  • The left pedal clip was rusty. A bit of WD-40 put that right. I may have over-loosened the tensioning screws in trying to sort this out, but I did end up liberating my shoe.

  • I finally got a new cleat bolt and fixed my newer cleats (which had lost a screw when I had a similar clip problem on the road some months back).

  • My rear wheel was brushing the brakes. This was because I had a spoke almost completely loose, and several more headed that way, on both sides of the wheel. It was way the hell out of true. There followed some emergency wheel-truing, using the old "your brake blocks are an emergency truing stand" trick. I have to assume this happened near the end of my ride, or I wouldn't have made it as far as I did.

  • That wasn't my chain squeaking, it was my bottom bracket.

  • My shifting has been rocky lately, though I've mostly been able to fix it using the adjuster nuts.


So clearly time for some Extreme Bike Maintenance including tune-up and a proper truing. And probably a fresh chain. Sigh.

Meanwhile, our trusty Blackburn pump had its pump/hose connection fail in a "you might be able to epoxy that, maybe" way, so I bought a new one (one of the fancy dual-headed pumps, which I tried in the store and in Maine with great success). Sadly, ours (from Wheelworks) was defective: it seems to work fine as a Schrader pump, but lets all the air out of Presta tires. I am very pissed off now. Will naturally be seeking an exchange.

So, what I thought would be about 20-30min of fiddling with the bicycle has now taken basically all evening. Grrrrr.

PS: did you know terminating or not-terminating list items changes the inter-item spacing on Safari?
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