Wednesday, February 20, 2008

blunts and bike-speak

I'm rolling past Truman on Windsor with Dave smoking a floppy blunt of blueberry. Just got out of work where I spent an hour off the clock rehabbing a bike for Gustavo to borrow. When he goes back to Brasil he'll return it to me so I can sell it. A customer left this bike for Eaton to do as it pleases. It's a basic Raleigh 21spd mountain bike. TIG welded steel, no suspension, medium frame. I took the tall-ass Key West handlebars off, swapping them for some flat bars that were taken off a Bianchi Milano. I removed all the shifter-stuff that was attached to the Alivio brake lever/shifters, and used some reel cheap friction thumb shifters in its stead. The J&B catalog has friction shifters marked as 'Pyramid' listed for sale. I've witnessed, used, and detested those plastic bodied shifters - but I ordered a pair for lack of a better immediate alternative. What arrived to fill the order is a pair of aluminum bodied shifters with a nice ratcheting feel labeled as "Xundah." These are a sure classic, and I've put three pairs into action so far. For grips I used khaki colored 'Oury' brand. The cables had been recently replaced. Since I was removing a considerable amount of housing due to the handlebar exchange, I was able to cut off the clamped cable sections and reinstall the same cables just like new product. Mega thrifty! The cables that came with the Xunda shifters were replaced with stainless. They don't supply Xundahs with cables that would make your momma proud. The original cantilever brakes and the derailers were all fine and remain on the bike. The chain was deemed toast and replaced with a SRAM PC-830 "reasonable price/quality" model. In short: without going apeshit, I rehabbed this bike pretty good, and I did it fast on the cheap. I like that. [ed note: after riding this bike for a longer distance, I've decided that the wheels are too heavy, especially with the big cheap tires. Oh well.]

No comments: