|NEW (to me) BICYCLE!
||[Jul. 30th, 2018|09:54 pm]
Judy Anderson (yduJ)
So, my bicycle has rust. A lot of rust. There's a hole in the frame. "Probably it's not structural," I say hopefully. OK, I must get serious about replacement.
Unfortunately below-seat steering for recumbents is out of fashion, and I really like it. One idea is to have a new frame manufactured; a buddy of Ken's has a welding setup and fancies himself a bike builder. We've been talking. But he keeps sounding more and more like hot air.
So I'm poking about online. Linear still makes below-seat steering. I rode a Linear once and thought it was OK. They make some short wheelbase versions -- I rode a long wheelbase Linear and while it was OK, the turning radius sucks and there's a big problem of transportation due to its size. So I know I want short wheelbase.
I call up Belmont Wheelworks, where I bought my bike 20 years ago. Surprisingly, the guy who sold me my bike (and is into recumbents) still works there -- and they're still the recumbent go-to place. But, mostly they sell Bachetta, which only makes above-seat steering bikes. However, while I'm on the phone, Scott says he has a used bike that a customer is trying to sell, and it's a Vision (same as mine) in good shape. I agree to come look at it.
It's a steal at $600. It has one small maintenance issue, which is that the shifters, especially the rear shifter, are flaky. Scott assures me this can be fixed with a good cleaning. I'm a bit skeptical, but the rest of the bike is in such good shape I decide to go for it. Scott said it was a 2006 or 2007, but the fact that the company's been out of business since 2004 makes that implausible. Still, it's a good 5-6 years younger than my bike, and has been taken better care of (or seen fewer miles).
So Saturday I got serious about making it be a bike. Trepidaciously I undid some screws and pried the cover off the shifter. Nothing went >SPROING<, and inside bits were accessible to a toothbrush and citrasolve. And it worked! I was able to put it back together without any leftover parts and the shifter now works flawlessly. I might do the front shifter some time. It's much less flaky, so I don't care as much. Then I spent hours undoing rusty screws from my old bike to transfer my rack and other accessories, including the front wheel because (a) I put new wheels on my old bike not too long ago and (b) the new bike had apparently been stored long enough to develop a flat spot on the front tire so it went bump bump with every tire revolution.
It has SHOCK ABSORBERS! They are AWESOME. Unfortunately it appears to be a bit heavier than my old bike and I think I can tell. Anyway, I rode it home from work today. Quadrupled the mileage I'd put on it over the weekend...
26.42 in 2:23 for a really lame average of 10.1. I can't even blame it on a different tire size because I used the tire from my old bike.
I'll have to remember to wipe it off when I come in from winter cycling. Maybe it'll last longer that way...
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