Sunday, April 24, 2011

Spunky is Single

She's been around the block a few times. She's slightly past her prime yet still acts as spry as she was in her youth. Some might call her a cougar. I still call her Spunky. Spunky Brewster.

She's my hand-me-down townie bike. Before moving out to Colorado my loving friend Jeff bestowed this beauty upon me. His disclaimer at the time was "this is my old cross frame with all of my old original road components on it. She's got a lot of stories. Have fun!"

And fun we have had. So much fun that I might have worn ol' Spunky out for good. Or not? Awhile back she started getting really sassy in the shifting department. Depending on the day, she may or may not decide to move the chain from the middle chain ring. Despite all ordinary efforts to keep her running smoothly - new cables and housing, basic adjustments, the occasional lube - she finally put her pedal down and practically screamed out, "THIS ISN'T WORKING! I WANNA BE SINGLE!"

So begins a new chapter for Spunky. She did it. She's single.

Here's a little recap of our ladies' night in the garage.

After gazing sympathetically at Spunky's old worn out drivetrain, I knew what needed to be done. My mental list played out: Whiskey and chocolate? Check. Spacers and chain tensioner? Check. Hacksaw? Check. Let's do this.

Yes, a hacksaw. I had neither the know-how nor the patience to figure out how those shifter cables are all connected inside the shifter levers. All I knew is that this girl no longer needed them. After confirming that I was, in fact, about to attack the shifter cables and NOT the brake cables, I whipped out my trusty rusty hacksaw and went to town. After an inordinate amount of effort and sweat, I finally sheared off those cumbersome cables, at which point Spunky let out a huge sigh of relief. Next I yanked out the cables and housing, removed the derailleurs, and low and behold we were well on our way to singledom.

The rest was a breeze. For such a dirty girl, Spunky's bottom bracket has never been so clean. We de-greased, we lubed, and we rejoiced. We ceremoniously tossed out that old cassette, replacing it with a shiny red chain tensioner.

Right around midnight we finished up. My little Cinderella got a new lease on life. I went to bed with a huge smile on my face, and woke up yesterday to find my girl waiting patiently, proudly, to take me to work.

PS - although she sure is enjoying her newfound freedom and weight loss, she is still very interested in meeting other bikes. Don't hesitate to call and ask her out - I'm sure she'd love to go on a ride.

- SS

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