All the Leaves Are Brown and the Sky Is Gray

2018-11-26 – I finally got my bike out of the shop yesterday, almost four weeks since I brought it in. After putting 4,500 flat-free miles on the bike, I started having them regularly—5 flats in the last 500 miles of the year.

So, on November 1, I took it in to get new tires. The old ones were pretty well work. And I had a few other complaints: the ride had suddenly become a little herky-jerky. Now, the problems were still slight, but I knew I had put a lot of miles on the bike and, as the weather was getting gray, I wanted to get whatever work that was needed done.

The guy manning the shop when I brought the bike in showed me that there could be problems with the bearings and possibly the chain. I told him to take care of it all.

It took about two weeks for the new tires to come in and then they called for me to pick up the bike. When I got there, I naturally asked what they did about the bearings and the chain. The answer was nothing. They didn’t look at them. So I told them to keep the bike and check those things out.

After a week, I get the report that the chain was stretched and had done damage to the sprocket wheels front and rear. I asked how long a chain should be good for. They said 2,000 miles. I had gone 5,000.

So, okay, I’ve gotten good use out of the bike. I’ve had two summers of great rides. I wish I would have known, but I know now.

I didn’t miss much riding during November. The temps haven’t crept into the 40s very often and my limit is 45. And it’s been windy and rainy a lot. Today we got our first real snow. And the forecast for the next week is not much better.

But I’m ready for when the weather does improve.

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