Monday, July 12, 2010

I Got The Broken Axle Blues

We got home from vacation on Saturday night. Sunday morning, I headed over the the start of the Three Rivers Festival Bike Ride, sponsored by Three Rivers Velosport Club. I was hoping to get one more century ride in before this Saturday's Ride Across Indiana.

At the 28 mile mark, as I was going up a steep hill, the rear wheel lurched suddenly into the left chain stay of my old Trek 500 bike. I stopped to see what the problem was - it was a broken axle. I had heard of a broken axle before, but I've never seen one until now.

I cranked the skewer down extra tight and rode gingerly 14 miles back to my truck. I have a new axle on order from the LBS, which comes in on Thursday.

I'm really glad this axle decided to break now instead of on the longer ride on Saturday. I thought briefly about riding my Tricross on Saturday, but my old Trek is much faster and I think is the better choice for a really long ride.

We stayed in this cabin again in the Adirondacks. It's one of two cabins Alex's family has rented on and off since the late 50's. Although we took our bikes, my riding was confined to the environs around Friends Lake. The hills out there are huge, and my legs aren't strong enough and my lungs aren't big enough to haul my big Indiana ass up too many of those hills.

Down the hill from the cabin a couple miles is the upper reaches of the Hudson River. I've only seen the Hudson from Glens Falls, NY and north - I can't imagine it being big enough for big barges and ships.

Another view on the Hudson.

This is the fisher's eye view of Friends Lake. Although the week was unmercifully hot every day, Anders and I managed to catch a bunch of nice-sized largemouth bass. Only one northern on this trip.

Happy riding!


rlove2bike said...

Glad a good time was had on the vacation. Vacation sure goes by quick eh. Bummer about the axle, but on the bright side, you have the knowledge to fix such things. Good luck on the ride.

Oldfool said...

Axle abuser!

Apertome said...

Yeesh! Sorry to hear about the axle, but I agree, better to have that happen there, than at RAIN.

I'm glad you had a good trip. I'm jealous!

Jon said...

You should take your bike to a knowledgeable shop and have them check the alignment of the rear dropouts. Broken axles are generally the result of strain incurred from being clamped between two non-parallel dropouts.

Big Oak said...

Jon - I asked two of the mechanics (at the bike shop I think is the best in town) if it could be the dropouts and neither had ever heard of such a thing. If I added the ages of both of them together I am still older, so I'm guessing they have some learning yet to do.

Jon said...

Forward them this link:

It saddens me how many "bike shops" have no idea how to work on bikes past assembly and/or upgrading parts...

Rat Trap Press said...

It sounds like you had a nice vacation. I'd like to visit the Adirondacks some day. Renting a cabin seems like the way to go.

Big Oak said...

Thanks Jon! Ironic as my LBS is listed as a Park Tool retailer and has a bicycle repair school. I should order a set and show them how to use them. I wonder if they'll give me a discount?

Myles - Alex and I were talking on vacation there must be a million beautiful places to vacation.