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Bike Riding And Repair


After aikido class, I decided to hit some thrift shops to look for used bikes. I wasn’t sure what I would find. I wasn’t expecting a whole lot. I wasn’t expecting to find any cutting edge Trek, Specialized, Cannondale, etc bikes. But who knows. Maybe I would find an older Trek or something. Becides bikes, I would look for books. I managed to hit 4 thrift stores (a 5th one that I visited had closed). What I managed to find were a Huffy, a Murray, and a few Free Spirits. And those were the good ones. I guess that thrift stores are not a great place to shop for bikes. I am sure a good one gets in there sometimes. I did see a few bike racks. One of the bike racks was a 3 bike rack made by Rhode Gear, and it looked like it was pretty good quality. But I already have a bike rack. I also found some stepper machines, including one made by Everlast that looked better than my Precor, and was only $39. But I don’t need another stepper machine.
I guess I will stick to scouting out eBay, Craigs List, and the local classified ads looking for a road bike, and a bike for my wife.

I have always wanted to try aerobars. I remember when they first started appearing in bike racing, I thought they were a great idea. I recently looked around, and saw that they are quite expensive for some reason. Not sure why as there isn’t much to them. So I have been watching eBay for aerobars. Even on there, they can be expensive. But I found some that looked good, and were not going for a lot. I did a snipe nid, and managed to win the auction for only $15.50. And the shipping is only $6. They say Profile, so I assume that is the brand. A search for Profile aerobars brings up a ton of pricey models. I didn’t find a model of Profile aerobars that looked exactly like these though. I think these aerobars might be an older style. One of the close up pics showed a could small scratches, and they looked like they might be aluminum. Not sure. I will find out I guess. It looks like many of the high end models are made from carbon-fiber. So for a total cost of $21.50 I will get to play with the aerobars. I can always buy better ones later if I find that it is important. The aero bars even come with a computer mount if I want to use it. I think having aerobars would have been great for the long flat steady sections that I rode during the duathlon. I hope they work on my mountain bike. If not, I will try them eventually when I get a road bike.
Profile Aerobars

I have a Diamondabck mountain bike that I bought new just recently. But I would also like to have a bike designed more for the road. I used to have an old Trek road bike, and really liked it. I was excited to see a Trek 700 listed on Craig’s List for $50. It said it was in fair shape, and needed the brakes adjusted, and oiled. I figured it would sell fast. That unless the bike was trashed, it would be a good deal. I researched the Trek 700, and found the bike changed over the years it was made. It started as a road bike, and later shifted more to a hybrid. Either style would be okay. I emailed the seller, and asked about coming to see it. That was Thursday, and he said I could come see it Friday at 6pm. Great! Well I went over to see the bike. I found it parked in the driveway. It turned out to be the later hybrid style. Cool! It looked it pretty good condition. The chain looked a little rusty, but I could soak it in oil, or even replace it, no problem. Brakes are easy to adjust. I started walking to the door, and decided to take a closer door. I spun the front wheel and it was fine. But then I spun the back wheel and it wobbled. I spun it and found it was kind of bent up. Ouch! If it was just a little out of true, I might have been able to straighten it by adjusting the spokes. But in this case, it was really bent! I might have been able to remove the wheel, and bang it with a rubber hammer or something. My guess is the rear wheel would need to be replaced. I ended up passing on the bike. If the rear wheel hadn’t been in such bad condition, I would have bought the bike. I have worked on bicycles before. Heck the old Trek I had, I had replaced much of the hardware with hardware I got off another bike. I have more than once stripped bikes down to the frames, cleaning/lubing the parts including ball bearings.
Oh well! I will keep looking. I am still not sure exactly what I really want. I hybrid would be cool for the off-road duathlon next year. But a straight road bike would be great too. Or maybe a triathlon bike! Too bad I wasn’t rich and I could buy one of each. I still want to buy a bike for my wife as well.

I bought my Diamondback mountain bike about a month ago. There has been an ongoing problem with the seat post slipping. I get the seat height adjusted, and go out for a 10 mile ride. The seat will sink about an inch of the course of the ride. So my legs become less and less efficient. I tried tightening the seat post clamp. I have adjust tight enough that I have a hard time getting the clamp closed. Still it sinks. I had the seat adjusted about perfectly before the duathlon yesterday, but by the end of the 10 mile ride, it had slipped by about an inch. I went to the sporting goods store to talk to the bike guy, but he wasn’t working. He will be there tomorrow. I will stop in tomorrow night. I read on one web site a suggestion of removing the seat post, and cleaning off the lubircation. So I pulled off the seat post, and sure enough, there was grease of some kind on the post. I wiped it off with a paper towel. I also wiped out the inside the opening of the seat post tube. But then I got the idea that there might still be too much lubrication. So I sprayed a little lighter fluid (naptha) onto a paper towel, and wiped the the seat post and tube. Then I re-installed the seat post, and got it adjusted. Maybe this will keep it from slipping.

I have been thinking about getting some sort of trainer. Here in Rochester, NY where I live, it gets very cold in the winter, and snow is not condusive to bike riding. I hadn’t done any research, so I hadn’t considered whether I wanted a mag trainer or a wind trainer.
Tonight on my way home from work I spotted what looked like a trainer placed out on the curb with the trash. Thats what people do here, if they don’t want something, but think someone else might want it, they place it out on the curb. I stopped my car, and turned around. It turned out to be a CycleOps Wind Trainer. It didn’t look broken or anything, so I put it in the back seat, and drove home. I have never used a trainer before, but it looked pretty simple. I placed my bike on it, and screwed the clamps down on the axel ends. I was concerned about clamping down on the quick release clamp, so I didn’t clmap it too tight. I carefully got on the bike, and spun the cranks. I began shifting into higher gears and started feeling some resistance. It was kind of loud, but then I was on a wood floor. I will have to try it on a carpeted surface to see if it is quieter. I think it will be.
What a deal! And if I decide I don’t want it, I can sell it on eBay, ot just place it on the curb…

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