Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Still learning to fish... now it's the chain

     I told you I was gonna "learn to fish", well I planned to learn everything there is to know about this bike.  What better place to work on it than The Toledo Bike Co-op.  Having the bike on a lift makes repairing it much easier. These people are my friends, and this was where I took my other bike in the hopes of finding someone who would get some use out of it.

     When I first purchased my new bike the salesman told me at some point I would have to tighten the chain de-railer cable.  I had no idea what he was talking about but didn't really care at this point, because it was years down the road...  or so I thought...  

     Remember, my chain popped off a while back... Then I often hear this clanking noise when I change the gears.  Well, that was because there was too much slack in the cable, causing the de-railer to rub against the chain as I was changing gears.  If the chain wasn't lined up perfectly, it could come off the ring, which was what it did several times.

     The first thing I had to do was press the gear shift, which is the same lever as the brakes only you press them inward rather than squeezing them. Next I turn the pedal and move the chain through the series of small chain rings.  I also had to repeat this on the other side to move it to the big ring.

          When pressing the de-railer cable with my thumb it was easy to see there was too much slack and that was where my handy bike tool (the one I always keep in my saddle bag) comes in.

     I had to loosen the screw (lefty - loosey) and pull the cable snug and tighten the screw again (righty- tighty).  Of course this process had to be done with both de-railer cables; the rear was only off by a fraction, but the front was closer to an inch, Wow!

          While I was there another thing I had to do was adjust my seat.  Remember I said I used to believe where ever the seat was is where it stayed forever... When I first got my bike and I was totally freaked about the way I was stretched forward and down, and thought I was going to loose my balance, my seat had to be lowered as far as it would go until I gained more confidence.  In fact, about an inch had to be sawed off of the seat post.

     Now that I'm more confident it needed to be raised back up.  What I didn't realize was by having my seat higher my legs were able to extend properly and I could get my right leg (the crazy one) up easier when I was taking off.

     My chain was finally in perfect working order so I hope it's a long time before I have to worry about it popping off again.   Now I know just a little more about the ins and outs of my new bike:)

     Oh, by the way... remember my old comfort bike... I found out the bike co-op was able to find a great new home for it!  Yay:)

Have a great day!!


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