Sunday, 24 March 2013

I'm turning into a bit of a mechanic.....

Did the usual Sunday morning agenda for this household.

Then made the decision to go for a walk with her indoors, before doing the shopping. We drove to Swansea, and took a quick stroll around Llyn LLansamlet, looking at the ducks, swans and geese. I was amazed to see a solo swallow sweeping to and fro over the water, in these wintry conditions, which tend to make us all forget that this is the time swallows return here from Africa. Obviously, they are unaware of what the weather will be like on arrival.

We did the shopping, food and groceries for the three boys and ourselves. Had a light lunch in the supermarket, namely a sandwich, cake and a cup of tea.

Home by 15.30, I got changed and decided to get my Pioneer GT, pictured above, ready for my commute tomorrow. I'm 12 hour days, and need to be on my way by 04.00. Too dark to do any potching then.

My back brakes haven't been responding well of late, so I thought I'd try to adjust them. They are centre pull, and I mistakenly believed all I had to do was shorten the pull cable. Only to find out that when I'd done so, the left hand side brake pad was permanently rubbing against the wheel rim. I noticed that there was no spring or tension on the brake assembly on the left. Very bravely, I made the decision to take the left assembly off the frame, on the rear forks, to see what the problem was. By simply comparing the set up on the right with that on the left, I was able to discover the snag. The lead part of the spring that provides the tension was set to it's least setting i.e., the end of the spring fits into a small hole on the fork, one of three there to provide varying tensions. I put it into the topmost hole to match that on the right and found both sides had the same tension.

It was then simply a matter of screwing the assembly back into place, adjusting the the centre pull cable, and I had both brake pads equi-distant from the rims either side, and the brakes were working beautifully. Hey presto as they say! I then gave everything a dose of lube, tested the gearing (Currently, I only use the middle chain ring, after reading an extract of "Simply Ride", on Amazon books for kindle, where the author contends that a rider only needs 8 gears, OK so I have 9, but you get the drift.) Pumped up the tyres to the requisite pressures, took it for a test ride, did a little polishing and put the bike in the shed ready for the off tomorrow.

I'm feeling really pleased with myself.

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