Tuesday, August 14, 2012

G-Usain Bolt

In the last year there really has been no time for riding or for working on bikes. So apologies that everything has been very quiet. Having said that being back on the bike has shaken a few things loose. The first bolt to er.... bolt was a crank bolt on "I should Coco". I finished the section holding the crank on by force of will and foot. Now call me stupid, but I would have thought that with a simple machine like a bicycle the range of methods for attaching the crank arms to the bottom bracket were pretty standard. So stopping in Peaslake, I popped into the bike shop for a replacement bolt. Howard he say "No" - apparently no high tech enough for the bikes he sells. Fair enough.

At home I start a search on the internet for a replacement. There on the page is a veritable smorgasborg of crank bolts, all with about information on size, fitting and suitablilty missing or phrased in some sophisiticated arcane manner that makes selection impossible.

One of the beauties of the internet is its accessibility and the range of information available - this time it fails miserably. My nearest bike shop is miles away (to the extent where I think opening one up would be a good business move, if I was incilined that way). Eventually, I make a trip in the right direction and pop in with the other bolt. It takes 10 mins of rooting in the spares draw, but eventually they find one that matches (visually) to what I need. I still have no idea what size, configuation the bolt is.

The process of fitting a new crank bolt is simple - especially when you have put everything together from scratch. Everything is fantastic and I make the next ride some months later it has to be said with no bike failures. However, I don't follow the simple advice that I should clean down and check the bolts etc at the end of each ride. I forget that I have not tightened to precise torque settings and that a few things may have shaken loose from the last failure. So I am out riding solo across some trails and feeling goof about how the bike is handling in the summer sun when clank, clank, clank. Pulling up I discover the bashguard is hanging off to one side. A closer inspection reveals that 3 of 4 bolts that hold the chainring and the bashguard together have gone AWOL. Perhaps that should be LWOT (lost without tightening).

A familiar story on the internet - but here just a bewildering array of choices. A trip to a bike shop that deals in high end gear is unproductive in walking out with desired product, but helpful in learning about variations in chainring bolts and lengths. I am able to order parts and replace.

No comments:

Post a Comment