Tuesday, August 25, 2009

On bearings, a Shogun, and a bitchin BMX

Smooth bearings are one of life's simple pleasures. Our tandem is running a six-speed freewheel. I have this fear that some day, we'll be out riding it and the axle will break. The freewheel design, compared to the freehub design, is more prone to failure since the axle is sticking way out there without any support. So, I wanted to put a hub, with a freehub, on the tandem. I found a great deal on a NOS 7-speed tandem hub (threaded for drum brake) on ebay. I got it for $40 shipped. Nice. It has an OLD of 145. Our Burley has an OLD of 135. So, Glen, of Elephant fame, got the assignment to make our Burley have an OLD of 145. To do that, he removed the bottom bracket so he could secure the bike as he expanded the rather beefy rear forks. When he removed the bottom bracket, it sort of fell apart in a way that bottom brackets shouldn't. A quick consultation with Alex (knower or finder of all bike info -- no matter how exotic or esoteric) revealed that the early-model Burleys use a sort of non-standard sealed cartridge bearing fitted into the bottom bracket with a super-high-zoot-full-on-
anaerobic bonding agent. That's how I found myself at McGuire Bearing company on East Trent yesterday. They had this cool shit on the counter:

Can you find my bottom bracket? That's pretty easy.

Here's the Shogun I built up. My "back pedaling" muscles are way out of shape. Those are the muscles on the top of your thighs. I guess those are the quadriceps. It's great riding a fixed gear again. I love climbing hills on a fixed gear: they just force me to push up them so much faster than I do when I'm downshifting and downshifting and downshifting. I'm drenched in sweat when I get home and it's not that hot. I think I'm going to ride this bike every work day for a month. It really forces fitness, which is what I need on the eve of CX season.

Dig this Mongoose. This was outside REI earlier this evening. The rad dude (or lady, can you imagine??!!) riding this bike was not obvious as I scanned the store. Maybe he or she was in the bathroom or something. I really looked around the store.


Pat S said...

I was down there tonight, too. Buying a bunch of lightweight camping shit that I don't need. I didn't see the bike, but I saw *her*. She was heavily tattooed and beautiful and now I know what she was riding.

FBC Spokane said...

Probably one of those Time Bomb cats.

Unknown said...

That was a Black Rock special. Sorry fellas just a dirt bag reusing his childhood memories. Just wait till the Spokane chapter of mutant bikes rears its ugly head!