Coffee and a quick fix

Tonight I popped into town on the bike for a coffee with the girlfriend. I’ve determined I’m not going to drive into town anymore unless I’m carrying passengers or cargo – strictly bicycle only. I totally overestimated how long it would take me to get there, forgetting that a) it’s a slightly more direct route, b) there’s half the traffic lights to worry about, and c) there’s no shortage of parking spaces and I don’t have to walk so far from the car park.

I saw an old friend from the cricket club who liked the look of the bike and was surprised how little I paid for it. Since I had 20 minutes to kill we chatted for quite a while, this and that, and then I had a little ride round the deserted town centre (the shops had mostly closed) to familiarise myself with all the cycle racks available – many more than I thought as it turns out!

When the GF arrived we went to Costa and I parked my bike where I could see it, partly because I’m still wildly overprotective of it but also because I love glancing at it. Such a handsome bike! I was thinking what a wonderfully good investment it’s been, one of the wisest buys I’ve ever made. It’s so damned comfortable with that gorgeous saddle as to be totally unremarkable (in a good way), and I think it really suits my slightly eccentric, olde-worlde character.

Anyway riding home I was increasingly aware of something funny going on as I pedalled. The crank never felt quite right but after I refitted the bottom bracket bearings I could still fill a notchy point in the rotation and couldn’t find the cause. One more outlandish theory was that my left and right legs aren’t balanced, but what I feared most was that the fixed cup was damaged as a result of the broken bearing shell I’d replaced, but thankfully it was just a knackered cotter pin allowing one of the cranks to flap about. I’d suspected as much, but whenever I tried to recreate the problem it disappeared until tonight, when it was quite obvious. Replacements now fitted, after a small amount of filing, I did a brief shakedown and it seems to have done the trick. Just as well I had a couple of new pins in stock!

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