Gets Worse

| July 1, 2016 | 0 Comments

This morning I got back at it.   I clearly hadn’t installed the handlebar properly which clearly contributed to my spill yesterday evening.  But after much trial and error, it seemed I had everything attached in the right place and the right way.  I made sure the brakes worked without locking up.   This time I put my helmet on and went out for another brief ride.  Now, the gear shifter was acting up.  I tried to shift the front gears and the chain came off.

Strangely, at that moment, a neighbor, a man of maybe 70, walking his dog offered help.  Seemed odd until he explained that he had sold his bicycle manufacturing company three years ago, so he knew a little something about bikes.  Turns out, he was no help with the bike, but had a fascinating story.  Was in the biking business for 40 years, sold his first company in the early 70’s.  Mentioned a bunch of brands that sounded familiar and told me the founders all worked for him.   He invented a number of seats and was surprised that I liked the weird seat I installed.

It was a nice chat and told him not to be surprised if I knocked on his door for some help or advice as I prepared for my trip.  He walked off and I hooked up the chain.  I continued my test run.

Within seconds of our chat, I shifted the back gear, everything seized and I heard a sickening grinding noise.  This time, it was the derailleur.  It was completely twisted and a gear was laying on the street.   An ugly mess.  The rear gears looked completely destroyed.  This was bad.

I brought my twisted mess to a local bike shop, expecting many hundreds of dollars and weeks of labor. But, it’s always darkest before dawn.

To my surprise, it was less than $100 to fix and I had my bike by the end of the day.  AND, he straightened out my handlebars and restrung the brake and gear cables.  Back in business.

Tomorrow, my first “dress rehearsal” into Rock Creek Park with my fully equipped bike.


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