Sunday, December 02, 2007

Northern Farm is EXPENSIVE

Jason, Vaughn and myself met for a few hours riding which didn't go exactly as planned. We were having a great ride out the back of Northern Farm and had just come barreling down a hill and through the river. I changed into first to negotiate the wet, soft sand on the other side of the ford only to hear horrible crunching sounds as portions of my derailleur were ground into oblivion by the cluster. A very expensive noise - that of carbon fibre being ground into dust. So there we were miles from anywhere with absolutely no possibility of fixing the derailleur so we decided that we would have to turn the bike into a single gear by shortening the chain. A good plan but none of us having done it before we were unaware of some of the issues. We definitely didn't appreciate the difference between such a thing as "high normal" and "low normal" gears, an explanation can be obtained here. We shortened the chain as best we could so that it was on the middle chainring and the lowest (smallest) sprocket at the back but as soon as I started pedalling the chain immediately changed gears up taking what slack there was and continuously trying to change up to another gear. This led to horrible sounds as the chain started to ride up on the sprocket and then because the chain wasn't long enough was forced down again and eventually this led to the chain falling between the middle and large chainrings which effectively put an end to my cycling altogether for the day.

From where we had got to jason and vaughn would push me on the flats and slight uphills and I would run up the steeper sections while they got their breath back. No joke trying to push someone up a hill - I could tell from the rasping breathing of the two of them.

Methinks that I have well and truly damaged the drive train so I am now going to have to replace not only the destroyed portions of the derailleur but the middle chainring and the cluster. While I am at it, I should probably replace the large chainring as well. Ouch!.

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