Friday, May 8, 2015

Setting Things Right

Well, they are at it again, which means I get to fix it. Lucky for the customer in question, I don't just act like I know what I am doing.

I feel bad for the guy who was duped into paying for a bike that was fucked since jump street but all is right with the world now as I have systematically restored the thing to almost period correct...

The poor bastard came in because his bike was "shifting on its own" which is pretty uncommon for a friction shifting bicycle so I was immediately skeptical.


If you remember, I said "...it all started with a simple flat tire..." Because I didn't write the ticket, I wanted to ride it first to check out what was going on for myself. Well, that is in fact, where the trouble started so I called the customer and clued him in. He was super cool about it and asked me to make it right. There was two ways of going about this: Originally the bicycle was spec'd with 27" wheels and the knuckle heads at [Name Redacted Bike Shop] used 700c. So I was either going to replace both wheels or get a matching rear with the correct axle length. I went for the matching wheel as the dude had already been hosed pretty good before and I was certainly not going to add to that. 
With a new rear wheel I began the process.

First, the derailleur was hung on the bike in a very peculiar way.

 
This was because they either did not know or did not care that there is a part specifically made for this. Rather than tracking down that part, they drilled a hole in the frame...


So they could do this...


When in reality, it should have looked like this...


The difference?


In case you don't see it, let me make this a little more clear...


See the difference? Good. Now, this alone did not create the problem which is why I didn't address it in the last post rather it was the combo of incompatible wheel parts. 

I rectified that with the correct length axle...


...in addition to a freewheel compatible with the drive train.


Now, I would rather have replaced it with a more period correct freewheel but time was short and I did not want to inconvenience the man any more so I went with a "Mega Range" 6 speed. This decision had a purpose other than time constraints as the crank set was what they refer to as a half-step. So having a "taller gear" in the front, it was wise to spec the rear with an easier gear for climbing and such. Since the rear derailleur was intended for the wider gearing, this is a non-issue. 

I digress... finally able to test ride it I was not at all surprised that it rode beautifully. Just as it had from the day it was built; a day long before we overcomplicated the "dipping mechanism,*" and before [Name Redacted Bike Shop] began fucking up shit. 

*Austin Powers reference 

Anyway, it is important to note that as much as situations like this make my skin crawl, at least I have the ability to set things right and I am grateful that people allow me the opportunity to do so. So thank you for that but really, I enjoy every moment of this. I love what I do. So in the end, it's no trouble at all. It's all in a day's work for Bicycle Repair Man