Two rides that weren’t meant to be… I think this bike is jinxed!

July 8, 2008

Today we had plans to go out to East Fork State Park to ride on a mountain bike trail or two. We both had a vacation day today after the holiday weekend.

After we got the bike tire pressures lowered and scoped out the easy route, we headed out down the easy trail for our first run. What I think was less than half way around, I felt a big clunk, and then my rear brake handle was moving in and out. What the heck? I stopped and did a quick check, but didn’t see anything odd. Getting back on, I felt the gears shifting up and down. Looking back I could see that the rear wheel was oscillating side to side. Ugh!

The past few days, I’ve felt a bit of resistance, not much mind you, but almost like the brake was slightly dragging. I assumed that the bearings were going out in the rear hub. Since cleaning the bikes after the Caesar Creek mountain bike trails last weekend, the bearings have been a concern. They were grinding after the cleaning, and I disassembled the hub enough to get some grease into the bearings, and was paranoid all week after that. Well… they apparently lasted about 100 miles before they gave up the ghost.

I didn’t feel like walking it back to the vehicle, so I disconnected my rear brake and we rode back the way we came. I was popping, grinding, and crackling the whole way. I tried to save the chain and gears a bit by walking the bike up the hills. That way the chain wouldn’t be jumping gears constantly under the pressure of going up hill. I’ve got to say, it felt really weird. It sounded like I was pedaling a box of Cracker Jacks!

It was a bit of a bummer cause we had driven 35 miles to get here, but so it goes. The next step was to get to the bike shop. They had the wheel I needed since the other one was jinxed and replaced it for me while we looked around the store.

After a bite to eat and some time to clean and lube the chains from the previous few days grime, we decided to go out and ride on the Lebanon YMCA trail. We got the tire pressures back up and parked in the Kingsview Industrial Park. We wanted to go as far as we could toward Lebanon and started down the trail.

As we accelerated up my personal “Hill of Death”, it felt like something was slipping…. almost like the sprocket cassette on the rear tire hadn’t been tightened. I exclaimed… “What the hell?!?” I quickly stopped. I jumped off my bike and looked. We could hear a slight pressure leak on the rear wheel, so I squeezed the tire and poooooossssshhhhhhh! … instant flat! Crap!!! Penny asked for the keys and headed back to the vehicle since we were less than a mile away. I started walking back and found an easy spot for her to pull in the vehicle so that we could load up the bike.

While I was waiting, I whipped out the camera and started pulling the tube out from under the tire. There was split in the tube about 1.5 inches long. All I can surmise is that tube had gotten pinched between the tire and the wheel, so when I cranked the pressure up it split the tube. It probably started going flat immediately, but the pressure inside the tire kept me going until I started up the hill and was really cranking, making the wheel slip in the tire. Grrrrrrrrr!!!!!!

Yes… that’s a new sticker on that rim… installed just a few hours earlier!!!

Yeh… we had a spare tube and tire pump with us on the bikes, and I even carry a scuba cylinder in the vehicle with a couple thousand psi so that I can easily pump up tires… but I’d had enough and decided to call it a day…. now… after a couple of beers, and an opportunity to write a blog, I think I’ll go out and change the tube… LOL!!

Other pics:



  1. 😀 I was really well behaved, and nearly supportive. 😛

    There are pics too….but I think those are going to wait to be loaded tomorrow!!!

    Both my rides were very short, oddly, and uneventful.

    But like diving, anyone can call a ride, for any reason, at any time, no questions asked. Even if it’s something silly like your tire rotating in an elliptical orbit, or some minor annoyance like a flat tire………

  2. […] were up to John Bryan SP, so we thought we’d go out to the trails at East Fork State Park.  We’d attempted this once, but I turned the rear hub into rice krispies on the chinese schwinn retail store mtb…. not designed for real […]

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