This morning I thought I might ride out the trail again, and I pulled a bike out from under the tarp. I had been riding my three-speed, but I'd busted up the rim (quite a while ago, actually), and it's not a good idea to ride on dented rims.
That said, it is entirely impossible to ride with a frozen bike chain. Fortunately, I had most of a jar of bike lube and an extra-large dose of TLC* to apply, and after well over three hours, the bike was in rideable condition, and I took it out to the trail to run down to Bethesda to buy some ice cream** and a new wireless hub.
More than one person told me that the bike looked like it was in great shape, so I must have done something right. :)
(Sadly, one of the sprockets on the rear derailleur is missing one or more teeth, so I may not get away without spending some money.)
Anyway, it was quite an experience. First, this bike is very much a road
bike - it bogged down in gravel quite badly. Second, it's a ten-speed with a very funky derailleur system, so I had the devil's own time getting away from fifth gear for uphills and slow starts. Third, the controls are arranged quite differently (drop handlebars
, down tube shifters
), which left me quite nervous and timid. Third, I'm not really fit enough to take the bike to where it should go - I was struggling to keep it moving and moving in the right direction, even.
But it was pretty good, nonetheless. Tomorrow, I'll take out the other rust monster and see how I can make it run.
* TLC = Tender Loving Care. With a pair of pliers and a lot of sweating, I must say.
** Sadly, the ice cream shop (Giffords) was closed when I went by, so I ended up buying a Dunkin' Donuts iced tea and bagel.