Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Swarm Reins Down

I'm a one bike type of guy. I think I've mentioned this before. I don't like specialization as it seems wasteful to me. That is why I use gloves instead of pogies, winter boots instead of bike-specific shoes with clipless pedals for the winter, and generally clothes to ride in that I also use for hiking, snowboarding, and skiing.

This is partially because I am cheap, but more over, I really don't want to have a new set of gear for every activity I want to try.

Generally this works out well. But I've found that with the bike itself, sometimes it's not as cheap to run a single bike. My general sense is that having a single bike as my do everything bike means that I tend to really chew up components quickly. Moving parts + salt + road grime + water + snow = really efficient grinding compound.

Chains tend to go quickly, my rings and cassettes turn to shark fins quickly, and bearings turn to dust in a season. Open bearings generally more so than cartridge bearings.

This brings me to the continuing saga of the rear hub. I've lamented the state of my rear hub time and again. Generally every time I have to rebuild the dang thing. So, the last time I was in the bike shop, I asked about how much it would cost to rebuild the wheel. 50 bucks, plus the cost of the hub and the cost of spokes - around a hundred bucks. So, essentially I could get the wheel rebuilt for about 200 bucks. Maybe 200 and a sixer of PBR. Well, that's 200 if I look at rebuilding with a similar level of hub - entry level. This is fine by me. As primarily a commuter, I really don't see the point of dropping anything over a hundred on a hub that I'll end up still needing to rebuild probably yearly. Yeah, the bling of a King hub would be sweet, but from a practical perspective... not so much.

What I don't want to deal with, though, is the open bearings of the Shimano hubs. Fortunately I've read some good things about the SRAM X7 hubs - cheaper hubs that use cartridge bearings. Zang! So, that's the direction I think I'll go. The front hub on the Pugs is a Surly hub with cartridge bearings and I've never had an issue with it at all.

The weather is getting ready to make a big and unwanted change again. Forecast is for warming temps and rain. Up to a half inch of rain on Friday. This is the definition of suckage. Trails will be decimated. Skier's will commit hari kari as their workouts become swimming lessons, and crawl spaces around the city will turn into swamps and pools. Not fun.

No comments:

Post a Comment