Summer time and the living is greasy

Thing is, with the English Summer you have to make the most of what you get of it. So Wednesday found me bimbling 15 miles through buttercup-filled meadows and hay fields while Swallows swooped chasing insects and Red Kites circled high overhead. At one point, having climbed over a stile into a field beside a busy road I surprised a female Red Deer. For a while we stared at each other at a distance of about fifty yards, until she finally spooked and pranced off into the tall bracken. (Incidentally, Orienteers regard Tall Bracken as The Spawn Of Satan™). A bit later on, walking along an overgrown path, I disturbed a Fox, presumably it was out hunting in broad daylight to feed a litter of cubs. The sun wasn’t too hot, and the promised rain never materialised.

So I thought I’d repeat the experience today, but on my Mountain Bike. I haven’t had a serious ride since the Wight Diamond Challenge which is almost a month past. I was descending a track into a sheltered village when I realised that the pedals were simply spinning freely. What had happened is that the ratchet mechanism which allows you to freewheel, but which locks and provides drive when you pedal had failed, and the rear cassette of gears was just spinning freely. Fortunately I was quite close to a Famous And Very Nice Pub. Unfortunately I didn’t have any money with me, so the only option was to walk straight home. This was not too onerous, as I was only about 5 miles from base and I could at least sit on the bike and coast down hill, however, as I was kitted up in full serious cycling mode with helmet, glasses, heart-rate monitor and tight lycra shorts, and I felt rather silly slowly coasting home.

Once back, I disassembled the freehub mechanism and discovered that with all the off-road cycling I’ve been doing, enough fine dust and water had entered the bearings and nobbled the ratchet. All I have to do now is flush it out with solvent and put it all back together again. Problem is, I have neither solvent nor bearing grease, and by the time I do, I will have either (1) forgotten how it all fits together or (2) lost a vital piece. Anyway, it keeps me off the street corners.

~ by @mmonyte on June 19, 2008.

9 Responses to “Summer time and the living is greasy”

  1. “heart-rate monitor and tight lycra shorts, and I felt rather silly slowly coasting home” well now I got the strangest image of you as Billy Elliot doing a brisé manoeuvre while singing dancing in the rain…

    You got that bike all zooted up with Rock Shox and pink frame?

  2. Please, Rock Shox and Blue frame. I wouldn’t want to look too silly. You wouldn’t want to hear me singing in the rain. I have a four octave range. Problem is it’s all four octaves at once!

  3. rofl hmmm I’m trying to imagine the sound… nope sorry not getting it! There I was thinking that you lot all did duets with one said Californian tsk will have to cancel my concert tickets now!

    What’s wrong with pink? its the new black, haven’t you heard?

  4. I thought yellow was the new black in SA.

  5. Indeed indeed so much so that I am getting confused and looking for spray on paint to get a job – tried polish, didn’t work so well *shrug* what can ya do lol

  6. Ammo… trying to put your blog on RSS feeder on google reader but yours is the ONLY one I can’t. Is there a reason?

  7. None that I know about. Are you using the Entries (RSS) link at the bottom of this page?

  8. Had the same problem, the links at the bottom have feed:// before the http part – GReader doesn’t like that especially in the morning before a cup of coffee… remove the feed part from both of the below links and its sorteds

  9. I don’t use google reader because of all the naughty little tracking things they start doing as soon as you log into a google account. I only log into Picasa for as long as it takes to upload pictures. I also use the customizegoole addon for Firefox to further frustrate the not-quite-as-evil-as-all-the-other empires.

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