I haven’t been able to ride in four days. It’s killing me. One of those days was due to me needing to do much needed maintenance that I couldn’t perform until Saturday. Another was due to traveling up to my Mom’s place in Oklahoma. The other two were due to rain/storms and driving back to Dallas.

After a ride last Wednesday I started to feel really uncomfortable with my bike and how it was behaving. The rear rim was getting out of true, the front hub didn’t sound/feel right and my front brakes weren’t working right. Because of all that I didn’t ride on Thursday due to safety concerns and planned on doing a lot of work on Saturday so I could use my Dad’s shop. So that’s what I did. I spent about six hours working on my bike.

Make Shift Bike Stand

Make Shift Bike Stand

I made myself a make shift bike stand to make it easier to do work on the bike. It’s basically a rope run up to the ceiling of the shop with each end secured to the bike. One end on the handlebars and one end on the saddle. It worked.

First thing I did was re-pack the front hub with a little bit better grease and I’m satisfied with that now. I also think I may not have gotten one of the cones tight enough last time but I think I got that squared away.

Second item on the list was my rear wheel. It was in bad shape. I found four spokes that were very, very loose. I set about tightening those and got it into pretty good shape if I do say so myself. Eventually I’m going to need to go to a better set of rims due to my weight and all the riding I’ve been doing. Gotta make due with what I’ve got for now though.

The front brake is still giving me problems. For some reason the cable side arm isn’t springing back correctly after releasing the brake lever. I tried everything I could think of to solve the problem. I totally disassembled the brake and cleaned it and removed the brake cable and lubed it with no solid success. These are cheap Suntour Blaze brakes that came with my bike over 15 years ago so they aren’t the best wheel grabbers out there. Maybe it’s time to upgrade. It’s just kinda weird that they stopped working all of a sudden. I think I’m going to need to take it to a shop to have them looked at. I hate having to do that. Anything suggestions you readers have will be welcome.

Next I thoroughly cleaned my drive train. My chain looks in pretty good shape but I think the pulleys on the rear derailleur could stand to be replaced. The components are, again, old Shimano Exage and aren’t the best quality. The pulleys actually felt like hard plastic which surprised me a little. They were pretty easy to pull off and put back on. I also gave the bike a thorough cleaning which made it all nice and shiny.

All the work I’m having to do on the bike is starting to worry/frustrate me. I know every bike needs work but it’s getting to the point where I’m having to devote quite a bit of time to getting it ready. It could be the age of the bike but could easily be due to my weight. Or a combination of both.

Tonight I’m supposed to have group training at the loop so I’m looking forward to that. I hope the weather clears up enough for us to get it in.