This Space for Rent

Well, it’s just as well I’ve got a summer job

I was planning on going out for a nice long ride this afternoon, but while I was on my way south the bicycle started making some irregular pinging and knocking noises which became louder and more frequent as I approached Oregon City, which convinced me to cut the loop short and come home to try and see what the devil was going on.

When I eventually arrived home (there’s something about loud hollow “ping!” and “plink!” sounds coming from somewhere inside the bicycle that makes me not want to go at my already sluggish full speed) I checked online to see if the Oracle or any other of the online bikey sites had anything to say. Alas, there was no joy in mudville – aside from a sort of vague “well, it might be your headset” or “perhaps the spokes on one of your wheels need to be lubricated?” there’s not much there aside from “maybe your $400 frame is cracked and will need to be replaced!”

So, instead of doing a nice 60 mile loop, I tightened the headset (which certainly seemed like it might be the thing to do, given that the star-nut in there no longer grips the sides of the steerer tube – I ended up having to use my headset press to preload the headset) with no changes, I lubed the spokes with no more effect than having my braking get worse, and then I looked at the likely places for a frame to break and found nothing that even came close to being a “yoo hoo! expensive repair job coming right up!” moment.

But there’s no way I’m going to ride brevets or permanents with a bicycle that pings and groans as if it’s on its last legs. I’m not even sure if I want to commute to work on it until I find out what the dickens is making those noises.

I suspect it’s the headset. I’ll have to pull the front wheel tomorrow and tighten the headset up until it won’t rotate at all, then back it down until I can turn the front wheel. Failing that, I guess I’ll start using the Trek for commuting (provided I can fit it into the elevator at work) while I take the MLCM to one of the LBSes to see if they can figure out and dispose of the horrible sounds it’s making right now. No, it’s not the headset – it’s the dynamo hub! I pulled the seatpost, relubed it, went out and got the same sort of pinging noises. Then I relubricated the seat rails, and just before going out on a whim spun the front wheel. *ping* *pop* on just the first rotation, and when I put my hand on the axle I could feel something catching, then releasing as the wheel spun around.

Well, that’s a cheaper thing to fix than replacing the frame.

I guess. Having the bearings die(?) after a whopping 5 months (purchased on 15-Feb-2010) is not a particularly compelling argument in favor of the dh71 dynamo hub.

Maybe I’ll have to bite the bullet and buy a SON (gulp!)


Bottom bracket?

Last time I had a noise like that, it was the seat tube, but there was only one such noise…

Graydon Sun Jul 18 04:53:09 2010

post, gods rot it, seat post.

Should know better than to post before I’ve had breakfast.

Graydon Sun Jul 18 06:02:43 2010

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