Terii’s Cycling Babble

A Potentially Long Day
October 24, 2014, 5:27 am
Filed under: Day Rides, Misc

Even if it doesn’t turn out to be so long, it will still involve over 100 miles of driving. 120 actually. Off the trike is going to the shop. It’s been sitting in the garage for the past 3 or 4 days.

Remains of Neolithic Sun Temples & Iron Age Earth Works

Remains of Neolithic Sun Temples & Iron Age Earth Works

First though, sharing one of the ‘non-cycle days’ photos of Bornholm. Not a great photo. It was a murky day and though I loved the site for the long stretching archeology, there wasn’t really much to see. A few circles of short logs and a staired platform with signs explaining the site. The platform actually stood on one of the 5000 (or more) year old rings and archeologists think each ring was used as a sun temple. Built of tall logs with a platform at the top, floored with clay and offerings to be burned on a raised bonfire. There’s evidence of almost 2 dozen these ‘Woodhenge’ platform temples in the park area. Just to the left of the photo, you can see remains of the Iron Age defensive earthworks. There are also indications that some 14+ acres of the area were protected with palisades back in the Neolithic age.

There is also a grave area where over 30 skeletons were found, many showed signs of violence. One man was completely cut to pieces. Bornholm was often raided and involved with conflict as it served as a major crossroads for trade and a defensive position near the transition of the North Sea to the Baltic.

As for riding, it’s been sporadic. My intention was to resume my every-other-day minimum, but even when the weather hasn’t been abysmal, I’ve been sick and not wanting to risk making it worse by going out into chilly with a potential of soggy. It’s been weeks since there’s been more than a vague hint of sun and blue skies for more than 5 minutes. A few days were crazy warm with even a nighttime thunderstorm thrown in. Thunder and lightning in October… in Sweden. Not a hint of snow either though we finally did have a little frost. It’s as if it’s setting up for another Mississippi winter here in Sweden like last year’s. I hope it turns into a proper winter with snow that sticks around for more than a few hours.

The horrid weather combined with feeling unwell means there have only been 4 rides since the last one on Oct 4th mentioned in the blog. That being the Saturday after we returned from Bornholm.

Over the course of those 4 rides, I’d noticed my braking power rapidly diminishing. First it was just having problems getting down the very steep slope into the storage without crashing into back walls. My right front brake was quickly losing it’s ability to stop me on any kind of slope or if Loke wanted to run. Inspite of adjusting the cable so I could apply more pressure, it couldn’t do more than slow me down unless on a flat with Loke being lazy. Even then it would take 20 yards or more to stop. The least little downgrade or Loke wanting to go, it was useless. My left brake was quickly following suit, losing stopping power rapidly.

Our last outing, on the 18th, it became downright dangerous. Rolling down toward an intersection from the top of an overpass, I barely stopped before rolling into a crossing car. The parking brake saved the day. I walked the trike into the storage, knowing I’d crash otherwise and there it’s sat. Once we get a bit  more daylight, I’ll go load it into the car to drive it for the appointment at the cycle shop today. Loke and I will wander around the lake not far from the cycle shop.

Hopefully, by the end of the day I’ll have brakes again and we can go for a ride tomorrow.

Also getting the gears adjusted.

Oh, did I mention why I think I have so much trouble with my gears? I can’t remember, so I’ll mention it now.

After getting the gears readjusted last time, they started acting up a month or so later. Nothing drastic or unmanageable, but noticeable. I realized it seemed to start happening moments after a silly mistake. When I’m riding in the granny ring (small front gear) and the easy back gearing, I often just jump directly to middle front ring without changing the back gear.

In the biking world, small/small and big/big gearing combos are bad. Shouldn’t be done. Especially the big front/big back. Well, at times, I had a bad habit of forgetting that the trike was already in the middle ring while still on the large back. I’d jump to big ring in the front without changing the back. I think that pulled the back derailleur out of alignment and fouled my gears. Almost immediately, I noticed the sloppy shifting when it had been perfect before.

The past few months since noticing that, I’ve managed to not do the bad ‘big/big’ again and the gears remained the same, getting no worse. I haven’t wanted to test my theory and risk making the trike completely unrideable. It seems to be a pretty good indication though!

So, I just try avoiding such careless shifting and I may be happy with my gears for longer! *fingers crossed*


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