What a time

So, we are in the middle of a global pandemic. I’m not going to lie, I’m finding it hard. Work at the moment, is to be perfectly honest, a massive drain on my mental resources, and watching people and their behaviours is troublesome.

The other day, on a ride I had a guy launch a tirade of abuse, because I didn’t say thank you for him stopping and letting me through a gate. He was on the phone, and headed off to my right into a car park, out of my vision. I just thought he was just stopping to do his phone call. It wasn’t until I was about 15 yards away he started ranting about manners. I just rode off, as I wasn’t in the frame of mind to deal with him.

Work is a nightmare, having to get ready for limited reopening, after dealing with a nightmare series of events for online ordering. I’m really not looking forward to the store reopening, let alone dealing with the great British public, and with 70% of the workforce furloughed the work is tiresome and mentally draining.

But my bike has been my saviour. But with a horrible clicking noise I couldn’t pin down. Not surprising since it’s been in the garage, unused and forgotten since the back end of October. So, a little maintenance was obviously in order.

However, I got a little carried away, and broke the bike down to frame level, cleaned and checked each and every component. Jockey wheels removed, cleaned and oiled, derailleur front and rear cleaned and re indexed, both wheels dismantled cleaned, regreased and retensioned. Front chainrings removed, cleaned and bottom bracket replaced with the superb Hope bottom bracket.

So, all in all, a bit of maintenance nirvana. Taking it out for a short ten mile test, no annoying clicks clunks or other noise. Bikes are amazing machines. They are so simple, but they give you so much in return.

So, if your feeling a bit down, like many people in these troublesome times, try a cycle ride. It’s good for the mind, body and soul, and try not to let your work, or lack of it get too you, it’s not the most important thing in your life, don’t let it be.

Full breakdown and rebuild

So, with the weather as it is, scuppering any riding, I decided todo a full strip and rebuild.

So each part taken off, checked and cleaned.

  • Remove seat post, clean and regrease post, collar and seat tube
  • Remove and clean saddle, and saddle clamp. Regrease if required.
  • Reinstall seat post and mount in work stand.
  • Remove front wheel.
  • Cut all break and gear cables
  • Remove handlebar tape
  • Remove all old cables and housing
  • Remove and clean bottom cable guide.
  • Mark handle bar position.
  • Remove handlebars, check shifter alignment and torque
  • Check derailleur alignment
  • Remove rear wheel
  • Remove all banjo nuts and clean threads regrease.
  • Break and remove chain
  • Remove rear derailleur and clean and check. Dismantle cage and clean jockeys.
  • Remove pedals, clean and regrease. Grease speedplay.
  • Remove cranks and chain rings. Remove chain rings, clean and regrease bolts.
  • Check and clean front derailleur
  • Check bottom bracket, remove clean and replace/regrease
  • Remove headset.
  • Check headset bearings and cups for wear.
  • Clean steerer and crown race
  • Check wheel bearings for play or bearing wear.
  • Remove rear cassette, check for wear
  • Check freehub for play, remove, regrease.
  • Grease quick release skewers.

Maintenence Days

My bike has had a fair bit of work done recently.

Replaced the bottom bracket, dismantled front hub replaced bearings, replaced bearings in rear hub and freehub bearings.

The bottom bracket replacement was easier than I expected. Removing the cranks, and the bottom bracket with the aid of a hammer, a good clean and liberal use of anti seize grease saw that go in with little issue.

Front wheel bearings where just as easy. Problem was, I don’t own a bearing press. So after driving out the old bearings, the new bearings where placed into the recess, old bearing on top, and gentle taps with the hammer to seat it correctly.

Then the back bearings in both the freehub and wheels needed doing. In order for that I had to borrow a bearing press from my mechanic.

Yesterday, I planned a ride out to Pateley Bridge, but never actually made it that far. I got out to Menwith Hill Road, and at the end, saw the traffic racing past on High Moor, and chickened out. That traffic was moving way to fast for my liking. Going back the way I had come, however, was a lot of fun.

Screenshot_2015-10-16-14-55-02Some 15% inclines that I had to climb, where hellish fun on the way back, but my god they where hell on the way out. Church Hill, I am not embarrassed to say, I walked most of it. But I do have a heavy cold as well, so that has not helped 🙂

I recently switched to a pair of 23mm tyres, whereas I was running 25mm. The difference was quite noticeable to start with. I felt like there was more rolling resistance. However, I believe the Felt Z85 was actually designed with 23mm in mind, as the 25mm it comes with do not give you a massive amount of clearance on the wheel gap. So I have got rid of that annoying scraping when crud gets gathered in the wheel space. Which is nice.