Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Another broken wheel

I broke another wheel. About a month ago, I put a dent in the rear rim of my number one off-road bike. I had a replacement rim ready and laced it up.

Then I broke a suspension bolt on the same bike due to my ham-fisted inattention while tightening the bolt.

Then on Sunday, I was riding my backup bike, which took lots of work to get together for Sunday's ride, and I potato chipped the rear wheel. It was a pretty funny stunt and might have been worthy of viewing by other people had any been there.

I wore baggy cycling shorts that day. I was descending a trail with sharp rocks and picking my line carefully, when I got a little fast and and the trail became steeper. I slid my butt off the back of the saddle to prevent myself from going over the bars. It worked well, I saved my skin. At the bottom of the trail, I needed to turn left, but I couldn't get back on the saddle. My baggy shorts were caught on the back of the seat. I unclipped my right foot and fell over on the left side. This was a very slow crash. Crash is too strong of a word. It was more of a slow motion tipping maneuver. It didn't hurt. I got up feeling a bit awkward, jumped on the bike and it didn't go anywhere. The wheel was very potato-chippy shaped.

I pulled the wheel out of the frame and wrestled it into a decent enough shape to fit in the frame and rode home with the tire buzzing on the chain stay. The lack of tire clearance on the chain stay of this bike has always been a complaint of mine.

The rim was really too light of duty for an offroad bike. I bought it from Rivendell and they warned of exactly that. But I'm a cheapo and these rims were a real bargain. (That's sarcasm, you know.)

This time, I'm buying a Sun Rhyno Lite replacement rim. They're known for strength. I'm not using anymore lightweight stuff unless it has a reputation for being bullet proof. I'll pick it up today, maybe have it built tonight and ride it tomorrow. That bike deserves to have its photo posted here.


Matt_J said...

Hey 3-speed, nice blog. Reminds me of a time I wasn't as smart as you and DID go over the handlebars, also in slow motion. Ended up on my back holding my bike up over me, feet strapped in, hands on the bars.
Maybe you can help me with something. I ride my bikes to work-- one bike gets me to the train station, sit on the train for an hour, second bike to the office. I break a lot of spokes on the rear wheels of both bikes, like one a month, and this has been going on for years. What gives? Both bikes are narrow tired, 4 speed coaster brake with package holder.

Eclectchick said...

Rivendell? Well, if what did you expect from an elven-forged wheel?


Eclectchick said...

Yeah, that was English.


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Anonymous said...

I saw a bike once that had the tire rubbing on the chainstay long enough to wear completely through the metal of the chainstay. The bike's owner swore he never noticed it was rubbing. How oblivious do you have to be to wear all the way through the chainstay?

rigtenzin said...

matt: The wheel might not have the correct tension and this allows the spokes to move too much causing them to wear and break. Or maybe you're a big guy who is tough on bikes.

Sort of unrelated, I'm a big fan of putting on the fattest tires your frame will allow. It makes the ride much cushier and protects the wheels from damage.

rigtenzin said...

eclectchick: elven-forged -- that's great. I read the Riv Reader and buy some of their stuff (not much though, because I'm a cheapo and their stuff is expensive), but I forget about the Rivendell literature aspect.

Whenever Riv announces plans for a new bike, their fans suggest lots of Rivendell-related names. It usually gets slightly weird.

Tuco said...

Wow, you're way more handy with bike repairs than I am. That was probably some good trailside repairs getting the wheel "wrestled back into shape" to get yourself home.

As far as riding naked goes (as per the article on my blog), I think I'd only do it in a big pack ride like the one that guy organizes. Doubt I'd ride through suburbia baring it all. : )

Matt_J said...

Oh I'm sorry to hear you say that. One of the worst things I know is listening to tires that sound like the USS Enterprise at Warp 7. But one difference is that they have pretty good bike paths here. I will look into the spoke tension. The wheels are true but could be tightened up. If I pluck a spoke, should it be a low, medium or high note?

rigtenzin said...

I've never caught on to the plucking method for testing spoke tension.

That reminds me of a ditty my dad says.

I'm not a fig plucker or a fig plucker's son, but I'll pluck figs until the fig plucker comes.

That made me laugh hysterically when I was about 14, but now I just smile thinking of my dad trying to entertain me. That's one of the important jobs dads are supposed to do, you know.

Eclectchick said...

"Whenever Riv announces plans for a new bike, their fans suggest lots of Rivendell-related names. It usually gets slightly weird."

Oh man - I would LOVE to see what weirdness people come up with.

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