Best laid plans of mice and Kate

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The plan was simple:
– Pop new gear cable onto bike
– Paint door
– Nip out for a nice cup of coffee and a prod at Bristol Archives…

….it didn’t quite work out that way.


See, first up, ‘popping’ anything onto an 80 year old (on the low-side of the age estimate) bike is, well, often less a pop and more an intricate operation. But still, I’d allowed myself a couple of hours to do it. And actually, in a remarkable feat of expectations not hideously failing to match reality, even including the time spent recording video (so I can play with Lightworks and some 720p video and my new camera and stuff*), including modifying the little bit of metal so that it holds the modern not-BSA cable… including all of that it was done in a couple of hours. Unfortunately, at that point, I discovered that ‘something’ was not right with one of the bearings. It turned out that something was not right with both of the bearings, actually.

The bike shop that repaired the brake mechanism had to take apart the bottom bracket, because it turns out that the brake mechanism is held on via a non-captive nut sat inside the bottom bracket. When they put it back together I’m very disappointed to note that there was still a piece of metallic crud in the bearing. Making it crunchy.


Once I’d stripped it, cleaned it and relubricated it and reassembled it, then played with the tension for an age, it seemed pretty good.


But I’m somewhat peeved that I needed to do that. I’ll probably end up re-readjusting it in a few weeks, anyhow, because I never get it right the first time.

But it still felt awful. I mean, literally awful. Graunchy and nasty. I couldn’t figure it out because I made the foolish assumption that they’d’ve not fiddled with the rear hub. I was entirely wrong. The rear hub had been adjusted and was *way* too tight.


The 1920s/30s BSA Hub – just before it was discontinued, has adjusters on both sides to allow you to tweak the bearings to just the right pressure / tension. I think that they (the workshop) were trying to get rid of the slight movement in wheel – which was because a frame bolt was a bit loose. I don’t entirely know, because I don’t know what would have possessed them to (1) fiddle with it, and (2) get it so dramatically, horribly wrong. It took me a very long time to work out that this was actually the problem, mainly because I kept not looking in the right place.

Anyhow, once I’d managed to find it, then there was the half-hour of [adjust it][test it][no][adjust it][test it][no][adjust it][test it]…[no][adjust it][test it]…[no][adjust it][test it][curse][no][adjust it][test it][curse more][no][adjust it][test it][HURRAH..oh..][no][adjust it][test it][at-frickin’last].

Actually, I was remarkably even tempered for the whole thing, considering how grumpy I can get.

Anyhow, then there was reassembling the bike.

And Readjusting the brakes. (Oh look, the offending part that caused all this trouble)


And finally a (very) brief test ride in the rain.

Now I’m going to go and play with Lightworks and some video, I think.

At least, that’s the plan.

* I now, as usual, have a terrifying amount of video to play with. The sort that makes my laptop tremble in fear.


Kate's allegedly a human (although increasingly right-wing bigots would say otherwise). She's definitely not a vampire, despite what some other people claim. She's also mostly built out of spite and overcoming oppositional-sexism, racism, and other random bullshit. So she's either a human or a lizard in disguise sent to destroy all of humanity. Either way, she's here to reassure that it's all fine.