Wednesday, February 16, 2011

A year later

Here's Jon's Kogswell, almost exactly a year ago. Fancy and new.

Jon rides this bike like a demon. He rides all of his bikes as if possessed. I'm pretty fascinated by Jon and how he rides and deals (or doesn't) with his bikes. I wrote a magazine article about it (pdf).

Jon showed up to last weekend's Sunday SOS ride on the Kogswell. The SOS ride is not a technical trail ride, but it is a trail ride. Jon is sort of the king of unintended underbiking, so he wasn't too phased by having the "wrong" bike.

We went through the graveyard and on the river trail and re-grouped under the mega church there -- by the exposed water pipe/fence. And I noticed his rear fender stay had become unattached. In fact, his stays and fenders area all bent up.

Thankfully the fenders are steel and the stays are 5mm aluminum rod, so nothing's getting getting all shanked up in the wheel. This is a big benefit of steel and aluminum fenders in my mind. And the fact that they can be bent back, to a degree.

As I'm fussing with the fender stay, Justin asks innocently, "is that a broken spoke?" Sure enough. Jon also has a broken spoke. We speculate on how long it's been broken. I should've looked closer at the break to see if it was dirty or not, but I wanted to ride, so I didn't get all GP on it, I just twisted it around another spoke to keep it in place.

The 26" wheels (not 650b) were a big selling point for this bike becoming a Jon-bike. I figured 36 hole 26" wheels were a good overbuilt solution for a guy like Jon and they could probably hold up for a while, even with a broken spoke. Sho'nuf.

It's Wednesday now. Jon is still riding the wheel with a broken spoke. My guess is that he'll ride it until another one or two or three spokes break and the wheel just won't spin.

Both of his back up bikes are also dead at the moment.

Two Wheel Transit is his shop -- head's up guys.


mechBgon said...

Haha, I'll keep my eyes open for it down at TWT then :)

Unknown said...

breaking spokes in one year ~= overbuilt, IMHO. softer tires, more symmetrical/wider flange hub might help, as might an offset rim and butted spokes.

maybe i'm just paranoid, but with lots of hard riding on mucky roads without cleaning (as in jon's case), i would be concerned about rim blowouts too.

John Speare said...

Andrew -- agreed al'round. Check out the linked pdf in the post -- it describes a few constraints: mainly money; we got most of the parts, including the wheelset used. Another reason I like 26" wheels: lots and lots of used mnt bike goodness.
And Jon won't even entertain the consideration of pondering non-flatproof iron tires.

Anonymous said...

Jon is light, his wheels are sturdy. Unless he's demonically soaring off ten foot cliffs, his spokes should hold.

Maybe the broken fender stays and the broken spoke happened at the same time.

In that case, Jon dropped the bike onto something pokey, or something pokey poked his wheel--from the side.

Maybe Jon tried to straighten that rear rack with a sledgehammer, and missed?

mechBgon said...

All better now :) The root of the problem was that the bike had fallen on its driveside, bending the RD hanger inwards (again). That resulted in the derailleur dropping the chain overboard off the biggest cog onto the driveside spokes, seriously weakening the outside spokes and leading to the broken one. Lots of cause & effect going on there!

After we consulted Jon about it, I rebuilt the wheel with a good used Mavic F519 rim and new DT spokes, and threw in a bonus spoke protector, a quick RD-hanger alignment and readjustment, and a brake readjustment to accomodate the new, wider rim. We'll see how that one holds up.

Unknown said...

also IMHO, fat tires at low pressure do a good job of squishing around things like shards of glass at times when a high-pressure tire would get cut.

Mark said...

Hey... Quick question. I read that you were running Hetres on your 26" Kogswell wheels. What Hetres were you running? I can't find 26" Hetres... Or can you run 650B tires with 26" wheels...!?

Thanks. Love the site...

John Speare said...

I didn't run Hetres on the 26" Kogs.

I had a 650b Kogs for a while, which I gave to a buddy, who then rebrazed the posts for 26" wheels.

You're right though: there is no 26" Hetre, but Compass makes a super sweet 26 x 1.75" tire that's nearly as rad.

Mark said...

I saw those. They do look great. Thanks John.