Thursday, April 14

Fixing things that ain't broke

I have never bought anything for my Fisher Price not-so-smart phone...

until now.

That is so worth it.

The Final Countdown must mean there's some relevant PMBAR content, right? I have selected a teammate for the 2011 race to replace the pirate known as Elk. If I didn't select you, it's not because I don't like you. I will announce my decision tomorrow, and I assure you that the decision was... the most logical choice.

I spent part of my week fixing shit that needed fixing. Some of it needed fixed because it was old, and some of it needed fixed because I'm a moron.

While the Canadianicans were here in Charlotte I did something stupid at Sherman Branch. No, not failing to complete the log ride at Sherman Branch on my first attempt.

photo cred: Original Big Ring

I must say that all three Canadianicans rode the log ride without much ado or even a "What's this all aboot?"

My stupidity came while riding over the Engine Block rock pile. Ever since I went over the bars there last year I always inspect the backside to make sure that no one has moved the rocks around since the last time I was there. Coming over the top and making this unfortunate discovery is something that I would like to avoid repeating in the future.

photo cred: Original Big Ring

Things looked good this go around, but on the way over the top instead of gently rolling across the gap in the rocks I lifted my back wheel for no apparent reason and slammed it into the edge of a chunky rock with a solid thud. The enhanced image below captures the moment right before the carnage.

The Stan's Arch rim stayed intact. The Industry Nine wheel held true. The Maxxis Ikon? It did not like what I did so much.

I ended up bottoming the tire on the rim, putting a tear in the sidewall right at the bead. When this happened to a Stan's Raven at The Breck Epic I just pitched it in the garbage. That was a free tire from some race schwag, but this tire I paid for with my hard earned $$$$'s. I had to make it better.

Some alcohol, a hair dryer, a patch, some vise grips, and two old Hayes brake pads later this bitch holds air once more.

This tire will still be my go-to. It was not the fault of the tire, purely the fault of the pilot.

I had another issue to address. Ever since the mud infested, sippy hole laden, three day ride through a Canadian swamp known as the 2010 Crank the Shield, my rear brake has not been 100%. Everyone knows that I'm a huge fan of Hayes disc brakes (even though they don't sponsor me, but really should) because they have been ultra-reliable since I started using them over a decade ago. They're also incredibly easy to work on, but that doesn't necessarily mean that I work on them when needed. I've ignored the issue since September, but after racing on the very demanding 6 Hours of Warrior Creek brake -and-accelerate course I couldn't ignore my issue any longer.

If you ride your Hayes brakes in enough muck over the course of a few years you may eventually have to swap the pistons/seals in the caliper. Life sucks, and shit needs to be maintained, but at least it's super easy to do and semi-cheap. That still doesn't mean that I wanted to do it.

Like most of the problems I have in life, I ignore them for as long as possible hoping they will go away, but when I tire of dealing with the lingering symptoms, I prioritize solving them in a most emergent manner. The order of the following events is very muddled in my head.

I bothered George about ordering replacement pistons/seals. I hate to bother him over small things, so I thought better of it and told him I'd find another solution.

I asked Peter if I could buy the Hayes Strokers that he had lying on a shelf at his office. Replacing the brakes on the cheap seemed like a better (easier) choice than fixing the old ones.

Niner rep Mike Stanley asked me about my new bike while at Warrior Creek, and I told him about my brake issues. He said he had an old small parts kit from the days when he used to manage the Terrapin Racing Team (sponsored by Hayes/Manitou). I was too lazy to walk to his trailer or I forgot, so I didn't get the parts.

I emailed Peter to remind him about the brakes. He wanted to teabag some hoodies to send me, so he hadn't got around to shipping them yet.

Mike was busy getting ready for Singlespeedapalooza, so he forgot to ship the brake parts.

Enough time goes by that I can't remember if anybody is sending me anything, or if they are, who is sending what when, but I ride the bike with the disabled rear brake when the Canadianicans were here even though I have a perfectly good bike with fully functioning Strokers just so I can be all Misfity and fit in with the visitors from the Great White North.

Mike says he'd mail the parts Monday. Tuesday he calls me and tells me he's passing through Charlotte, and he will leave them on my front porch. Upon getting home I find the parts and an empty house so I get right to fixing my brake.

When blowing the old piston out of the caliper with an air compressor point the piston away from yourself and anything valuable.

The operation was a success. Pistons and seals swapped in under thirty minutes plus some time for a bleed. So of course what showed up at the house yesterday?

The brand new Hayes Strokers from Canardia plus the new pads I sent to Peter to replace the ones I stole from the brakes while I was up at Crank the Shield. That and a couple teabagged hoodies and more stickers than I can fit on my Fit.

Success. Fully functioning and slightly upgraded Strokers on the bike, brand new set in the hole, stickers to hand out to the Misfit minions, and hoodies that smell like Peter's balls and Tim Horton's coffee.


Andrea said...

You're dead to me.

Anonymous said...

You don't really promote Misfit Cycles aren't happy with them?

The Vegan Vagabond said...

So to sum this up, pretty much everything wrong in your life is because of the Canadians.

It's okay, we get that a lot.

Peter Keiller said...

I noticed that to ANNON.
Just yesterday (following many hours of hard creative like work) I finished a custom hoodie to commemorate our 6 and three quarter year anniversary.
know what Dick said?
I have hoodies...

Simple as that.

the original big ring said...

Pfffftt . . . I don't remember you going back and riding that log.


I like hoodies.

dougyfresh said...

what patch did you use on the tire?

Anonymous said...

I tried to get some stickers from Peter for my car, but the conversation kind of stopped, fail.

I like hoodies and actually had hoped for some new clothing options, but not at $140. meh

My luck the same postal worker that is wearing my Darth Misfit shirt would latch on to the hoodie.

I have voted, twice.

dicky said...

Misfit who?

That company that is doing nothing to help me win the PMBSR blogger's contest?

Never heard of them.


I patched the tire with a standard tube patch and some glue.

dicky said...


Peter sent me the much cheaper (and now terribly outdated) black hoodies. Your mailman would look smashing in them.

Peter Keiller said...

some propaganda was sent to you.
i didn't tell you because we can't really have DICK feeling worse about himself.

as for the price of the hoodie.
it costs monies to make hoodies with missile software.
it costs monies to make hoodies in america(s).
it costs even more monies when some asshole insists on THREE different badges instead of the agreed ONE badge THREE times.

for 140$ i will be more powerful.
then i will steal the 140$ from women and children.
at that time we will call it a wash.


dougyfresh said...

curious to see how it holds.. dicky.

I use automobile tubeless tire patches that I cut down to the size of a dime. And tubular (rubber cement) cement to affix them to the tire.

on the fence about the military hoodie. I like the design.

jacobtubbs said...

hey dicky, how did the patch work out? what was the hair dryer for? i have a racing ralph that got itself penetrated this weekend and i hate to part with it over a tiny lil cut. those suckers are not cheap.

dicky said...

Patch worked great.

I used the hairdryer to make sure that the tire was totally dry before I worked on it.