Saturday, April 29, 2006

I killed Buttercup

My bike. *sob*

Well, actually I just grievously wounded her. She needs some expert medical attention.

I was all ambitious today and I was going to swap out the old 12-25 cassette for a new 12-27 cassette that should be a little more suited for the continuous hills at the Columbia triathlon in three weeks. Here's the before photo. I had never done this before, but I had all my tools organized and a manual at hand to help.

The old cassette came off fairly easily.

Then I put the new cassette on and took the opportunity to clean up the bike a bit. Yes, in this photo she is upside-down with her brand spanking new cassette in place.

Notice there is no chain. I had endless problems getting the new chain together with the "easy links", and so I used my chain tool to open a link. Whereupon I managed to BREAK the chain tool. It's really quite difficult to do much on a bike without a functional chain. So I can't do anything at all until I either buy a new chain tool, or take the bike into the local bike shop for some expert attention.

I guess that means my bike trainer session that I had planned for tonight is off. I guess there's a silver lining to every dark cloud, isn't there?

It's a lot like the lilac bushes. Here are normal lilac bushes, at a neighbor's house, about a block away from our house.

Below are the sad results of my gardening efforts on our formerly healthy lilac bush. Dead-dead-deadski. Now I have to chop the sticks out and put something else in its place. Which I'll probably also kill.


jeanne said...

i've done worse with plants. but i would chop that lilac down to the bottom and leave it. you'll see--it WILL come back! (ever the optimist)

Comm's said...

your a brave woman doing bike maintenance like that on your own. Changing out a cassette. Nancy you sure am big right out the chute dont you.

bunnygirl said...

That's a bummer about the chain tool, but I'm still impressed! I would've been lazy and just taken it to the bike shop.

Habeela said...

You get huge points for even trying to grow plants and for even attempting your own bike maintenance. I have not been brave enough to do either. I was glad I had someone along with me on my ride today to fix my bike chain when it came off.

nancytoby said...

Ooh, hope that doesn't happen in a triathlon, because you need to do it yourself then!! :-)

I took an 8-hour REI bike maintenance class last year (see March 2005 archives) that helped a LOT. I think I need a refresher, though....!!

bari said...

Your bike looks a lot better than the lilac bush, Nancy!

Lora said... careful...things happen in threes!!! The bike, the lilac bush....yikes--become bubblegirl for a bit!!

Chris said...

Alternatively, you could put your bike on the trainer and have one of those 'no chain' days that Hincapie is always talking about. :)

I commend you for doing your own bike maintenance, though! For whatever reason, I really enjoy working on mine. It's like therapy of sorts.

Mojo said...

Oh no! You still are THE WOMAN, Nancy. I give you props for even attempting to install a new component on your bike.

A dog came after me the other day on a ride and I knocked my chain off. It took me 5 min. to get it back on. I am so mechanically challenged.

KLN said...

I never would have tried it, so kudos for you!

I'm just freaking out about how to take off the back wheel, so I can put on new tires. Actually, I'm more freaked out about putting it back on safely, and true.

Flatman said...

You definitely get an E for effort! Nice try...keep trying and you will figure it all out!!!

mipper said...

*gasp* well, you got furtehr than i ever would have. i have read and re-read my manual on how to tweak my gears so they won't phanotm change on me (remember, cheap walmart bike, here) but i still do not understadn what the heck i am supposed to do. you are awesome for even attempting and AMAZING for getting as far as you did.

i hear lilacs are really really durable (lots of people plant them here, in the desert, just for that reason). be a shot of plant food and some more cutting back and it'll come back next year. but what do i know, i seem to only be successful at growing weeds.