Fixed my bike

Peak Oil can come – my bike and I are ready! Earlier this year, the freehub on my bike broke and I just was too damn lazy to replace it. In June, I got a nice new wheel from the bike shop (Sunrim AT18 with a Shimano Deore freehub). Yesterday, finally, I decided to fix the bike. Laura took the kids to see the new Tim Burton film, and I had over two hours of peace to install the new wheel. It turned out that the rim was about 3 mm off center, and I had to sit down and tighten the spokes on the right a turn and a half to get the wheel rim centered properly.

Installing a new wheel is usually not that difficult, I think, but with my 15-year-old, Italian-made (Simonelli) bike frame it can be tricky to make new stuff fit. When I re-built the bike a few years ago, because the old Shimano gear was falling apart, I discovered that not all of the design changes made between 1990 and 2001 were totally “backward compatible.” One of the problems was that the freehubs these days are quite a bit wider than in the 90s, to accommodate larger cassettes. That means I have to pull the chainstay apart about 5mm to squeeze the freehub in. That must be the reason why the rim was off-center.

After I was done, I took the bike on a half-hour ride in the woods behind the house. It was just like the “good old times.” the rear wheel is straight as a bolt – no wobble or hitting the frame any more. Now I’ll have to get my lazy butt back on the trails.

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