bike boy stuff....

Relax in southern comfort on the east bank of the Mississippi. You're just around the corner from Beale Street and Sun Records. Watch the ducks, throw back a few and tell us what's on your mind.
User avatar
JR.
Posts: 2017
Joined: Sat May 24, 2008 7:21 pm

bike boy stuff....

Post by JR. » Sun Mar 19, 2017 12:02 pm

I have already shared some of the fun and games maintaining my 26" "townie" comfort bike.

-replaced rear derailleur and shift cable
-replaced chain, required combining two stock chains because townie has rear wheel set back several inches.
-replaced tires when sidewall failed. Original 1.9" tires failed, I bought one pair of 1.5" 65# tires (on bike now), and a pair of 1.85" 87# tires.

I like the comfortable (wider) saddle, and lower seat height but the easy gearing was not up to the fast downhill on my normal circuit.

The stock 7 speed rear freewheel (sprocket) had a 14t high gear, and 34t low gear. The 34t low, was so low I never used the smallest (granny) 30t front ring since I bought the bike (used) to climb the steepest hills on my course. I replaced the stock "comfort" freewheel with a 11t-28t, significantly faster at both ends. Now the granny ring will get used and deliver roughly the same lowest hill climb ratio as before on the middle ring.

I thought I was replacing the front 3-ring pedal crank assembly with the same ratios but counting teeth, the old big ring was 48t and the replacement is 50t so that is 4% faster too. The combined high gear upgrade is now more than 30% faster. Friday was my first full road test and it is as good as I expected. I had a strong headwind on the fast downhill so didn't get to see how fast it could really go, but fast enough to make me happy. :D

I ended up buying some specialized bike tools, but tools and parts are still far cheaper and easier than carrying it to the nearest bike shop 25 miles away, and paying full retail for parts plus labor. Next time I will already have the tools. 8-)

For future projects, in the near term I still have a new set of 1.85" 87# rated tires to check out. Longer term I am thinking about buying a new rear wheel. The current rear wheel has a few spokes that need adjustment (truing). The cheaper freewheel hub offers less gearing options, and is less robust (axles reportedly get bent easily). So I am tempted to eventually replace the rear wheel with one that uses the better splined freehub, that accepts a wider range of modern cassette rear sprockets. I had to buy a no-name chinese freewheel because shimano (the big dog in bike hardware) stopped making a freewheel with faster ratios.

JR

User avatar
mediatechnology
Posts: 2667
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2007 2:34 pm
Location: Oak Cliff, Texas
Contact:

Re: bike boy stuff....

Post by mediatechnology » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:54 am

The current rear wheel has a few spokes that need adjustment (truing).
If you're really into hill climbing and produce high torque you may have stretched them.
I used to be hell on rear spokes and they would occasionally snap during a hill climb.
They would usually pop at the head.

Now I drag brush uphill for exercise...
"There does seem to be a pattern where, the more difficult a truth is to stomach, the higher the hysteria levels go internally at Google."
Visit RockmoreLabs on Etsy https://www.etsy.com/shop/RockmoreLabs
http://www.ka-electronics.com

User avatar
JR.
Posts: 2017
Joined: Sat May 24, 2008 7:21 pm

Re: bike boy stuff....

Post by JR. » Mon Mar 20, 2017 12:55 pm

mediatechnology wrote:
The current rear wheel has a few spokes that need adjustment (truing).
If you're really into hill climbing and produce high torque you may have stretched them.
I used to be hell on rear spokes and they would occasionally snap during a hill climb.
They would usually pop at the head.

Now I drag brush uphill for exercise...
I don't flog it that hard.

My daily course is 5 miles all on paved roads, or what passes for paved secondary roads here in nowhere MS (not that smooth).

Wheel seemed a little truer the last time I checked than when I checked it weeks ago. Maybe it is spontaneously healing. :lol:

Today isn't as windy so I may get to test new top speed on the fast downhill section. :D

JR

User avatar
mediatechnology
Posts: 2667
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2007 2:34 pm
Location: Oak Cliff, Texas
Contact:

Re: bike boy stuff....

Post by mediatechnology » Mon Mar 20, 2017 1:05 pm

You got a spoke wrench?
"There does seem to be a pattern where, the more difficult a truth is to stomach, the higher the hysteria levels go internally at Google."
Visit RockmoreLabs on Etsy https://www.etsy.com/shop/RockmoreLabs
http://www.ka-electronics.com

User avatar
JR.
Posts: 2017
Joined: Sat May 24, 2008 7:21 pm

Re: bike boy stuff....

Post by JR. » Mon Mar 20, 2017 1:52 pm

mediatechnology wrote:You got a spoke wrench?
No but I may use this as an excuse to buy a new wheel with the splined free-hub so I can use modern rear sprocket cassettes.

A spoke wrench is probably the one bike tool I haven't bought yet.

JR

User avatar
JR.
Posts: 2017
Joined: Sat May 24, 2008 7:21 pm

Re: bike boy stuff....

Post by JR. » Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:13 pm

I finally got all the derailleur adjustments dialed in and it's nice to have 21 speeds and use them all...

JR

User avatar
JR.
Posts: 2017
Joined: Sat May 24, 2008 7:21 pm

Re: bike boy stuff....

Post by JR. » Sun Jul 09, 2017 2:49 pm

ben2.jpg
Ben.jpg
I was tired of chasing odd noises in my Townie drivetrain... My current thinking is the bottom bracket bearing is on the way out...

I shopped new bikes mainly from the more modest price range, but it turns out none of the brand names will drop ship direct to end users. They all want me to buy it in a bike store, set up. I didn't feel like 50 mile round trip to pay more for a bike.

Finally I found a non-name brand (Bikesdirect) that will drop ship bikes 90% assembled.

This was the higher end of their "Dover" series a Dover 3... I promptly renamed it the "Ben Dover" :lol: . I wanted to stick with the 26" wheels and tires, but wanted the 24 speed gears, and a proper cassette for the rear wheel sprocket... not the cheaper free wheel sprocket like on my townie.

The bike has a strong feature set, including things I wouldn't pay extra for (like disc brakes). True to their word it was 90% assembled or more... I only had to do a few minor things like screwing on the pedals, mounting the seat and bars. Things you would have to adjust anyhow so no big deal... only thing i had to actually install was the front brake cable that was left loose.

Now I joke it was 90% assembled but only 50% assembled correctly... :lol:

I spent about two days trying to get the front derailleur right. First the angle was off (it is supposed to be parallel to the chain). As it was I couldn't adjust it to not rub in both lowest and highest gear... Correcting the derailleur angle fixed that, and while I had it loose I checked the front derailleur height... it appeared OK but appearances can deceive (a penny needs to fit between chainring and derailleur arm.) :roll: I was getting a once per pedal revolution rub or scrape, only when riding in the middle ring... I logically ASSumed a problem with some teeth on the middle ring... I went back and forth with a service rep from bikes direct and he was not very helpful suggesting things I already tried. Finally he gave up and said I should take it to a bike shop. :o Not my idea of fun to show up with a new bike that I didn't buy from the local bike shop. :roll:

I finally figured out what was going on.... The problem was not teeth on the middle ring, but the combination of the the front derailleur height, and the ring not being perfectly round. It was out of round just enough to rub at the high spot once every time around. When shifted to the middle ring, the derailleur guide arm is directly over the big ring, and that rubbed. If the ring was perfectly round, it would have rubbed all the time, or never. :D Apparently I checked the front derailleur height at a rotation angle where the ring was not an interference fit.

SInce then I have also had to adjust the rear derailleur to get the chain noise quieter.

I am still dialing it in. It isn't as comfortable as my old townie, but I like the extra speeds.. I have a new set of (medium rise) handle bars on order that may help with the ride position comfort.

As evidenced by the less than perfectly round ring, these are not very high end components, but the derailleurs and shifters are shimano so shouldn't be that bad. It seems to be worth the $379 it cost (IMO).
=====
I learned something interesting (to me) about the seat height adjustment. Every piece of WWW advice I have ever read, and what I have been told even by my ex-bike boy neighbor, that my seat should be adjusted higher so my legs are almost fully extended at the bottom of the crank rotation, to avoid causing knee injury. BUT my bum right knee cartilage damage is near the angle when the knee is almost fully extended, so that advice just aggravated my old knee injury ( Several decades ago my motor-cycle backfired on me, while I was kick starting it and trashed my knee.) Now adjusting the seat height lower, so my knee remains bent even at the bottom of the pedal travel, gives me pain free riding and doesn't aggravate that old injury. 8-)

JR

PS: after this experience I understand why most bike brands refuse to sell raw bikes to end users... I can imagine lots of he said/he said, disputes. I am surprised I was the only customer with this specific ring roundness rub issue (just lucky I guess)... but who knows the skill level of the phone service people... He gave up and told me to take it to a bike mechanic. After you place your order, then they tell you to budget $50-$100 for a bike shop to set up the bike. They could have said that before you order. :roll:

User avatar
mediatechnology
Posts: 2667
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2007 2:34 pm
Location: Oak Cliff, Texas
Contact:

Re: bike boy stuff....

Post by mediatechnology » Sun Jul 09, 2017 3:55 pm

My local bike shop used to get Wal*Mart-assembled bikes in for repair where the handle bars were installed with the front forks raking backwards.
"There does seem to be a pattern where, the more difficult a truth is to stomach, the higher the hysteria levels go internally at Google."
Visit RockmoreLabs on Etsy https://www.etsy.com/shop/RockmoreLabs
http://www.ka-electronics.com

User avatar
JR.
Posts: 2017
Joined: Sat May 24, 2008 7:21 pm

Re: bike boy stuff....

Post by JR. » Mon Jul 10, 2017 11:16 am

OK maybe my bike was more than 50% correct, but that front derailleur was adjusted wrong two different ways.

I noticed that there was a piece of plastic film stuck across the derailleur arm that was perhaps some kind of a quick set-up aid... if that's what it was it didn't work. :lol:

JR

User avatar
JR.
Posts: 2017
Joined: Sat May 24, 2008 7:21 pm

Re: bike boy stuff....

Post by JR. » Fri Jul 21, 2017 1:42 pm

My latest bike drama was a flat tire yesterday 2 miles from my house... :roll: My entire course is 2.5 miles out, them back, so this was about as far away from home as possible. :roll:

I thought the hill was harder to climb than normal but then heard a new noise coming from the back tire and noticed it going flat.

The bike, tires, and tubes were almost brand new, only weeks old so I was a little disappointed... The fact that the temp was in the mid- 90s with a heat advisory didn't help. If I could walk the two miles I wouldn't need to ride a bike for exercise (arthritis in my right knee).

A neighbor who doesn't even know me, but we always exchange friendly waves and comments about the weather.. in an extreme act of kindness picked me up in his car and drove me home with my bike in the trunk. The first time I rode by him yesterday I jokingly told him to get inside his house because it was too hot. :lol: The second time I came by I was pushing my bike on foot. :oops:

This morning I drove over and dropped off a bottle of my homemade wine (mabec). I really appreciated that ride yesterday. :D
=====
I pulled out the flat tube and sure enough there was a tiny tear or separation in it.... I found a tiny metal sliver inside the tire casing, but in my judgement that didn't cause the flat... the tire tube was just cheap crap. I could patch it but it would probably just spring another leak... not a slow pinhole leak but a tear, probably an impurity in the rubber.

I had a spare set of tires laying around, I bought two pair when my last set had a sidewall failure so I put my old-new 1.5" set on, with brand new (Taiwanese) tubes.

I tried to wear some latex gloves to keep my hands clean after handling the chain, but when I took the latex gloves off, water poured out from the sweat. :lol:

JR

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Baidu [Spider] and 4 guests