Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Another commute, another problem

Very nice day riding in this morning, with temps in the 50s and no wind. Made it in about the usual time with no major problems. Front fender was out of whack from the throwing around the bike got on Monday's flats odyssey, and the rear tire wasn't seated quite right, leading to a bump-bump-bump as it turned. Otherwise, a great ride.

Coming home, I felt strong, and was moving right along. Then, when I got past Stuyvesant Plaza and downshifted for the uphill light at Schoolhouse Rd, the chain went between rings again. I must have tried too hard to force it out, because then the spring snapped on the rear derailleur. No more shifting in the rear, the chain slack was almost dragging on the ground, and I was still a looooong ways from home. Got the chain on the middle cog in the rear, which is where it spends a lot of time anyway, got it back on the small chainring for this immediate uphill, and set out for a slow trip home. Fortunately, I discovered quickly that I could still shift front chainrings if I was careful about it, so now I had a 2-speed. Rode gingerly but at a good clip, being very careful what I did with the pedals, and made it to Plaine's Bikes in Schenectady in reasonable time. They didn't have replacement springs, and tried to sell me a new derailleur. Nope, not gonna do that. Adirondack Bicycles in Scotia had supplied the same spring once before ($0.25), so I was determined to give it another try. Continued home without incident.

Removed the derailleur and the spring, which was in fact broken, and will stop in Adirondack on Friday. If no spring, then maybe a replacement junk derailleur instead. Also bent the front fender stays just a bit to get them back in true. No luck with the tire yet, though - think I may need to remove and redo that one. A beautiful day and a good ride aside from this problem. Need only 16 miles for another 100-mile week.

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