Maintenance maketh the man…

…maketh the man bloody annoyed. But with the barn soon to be tearfully handed over to its’ new owner and the tool wall facing temporary evacuation* to ungrabbale storage, niggly faults must be exacerbated** by pointless maintenance.

It didn’t start that way. Only replacing a handlebar, reshaped by acting as the pole during the bike’s champion winning vault high into the bushes, and stem lurked between ‘Spanners‘ Al and nice cup of early evening tea***. Imagine my surprise then when, some four painful hours later, significant component driftwood splashed against a tiny shore of virgin workshop floor.

The detritus of an enthusiastic, if misguided, 4 bike romp of random tool use included four discs, two cranksets, three brakes and a worrying number of small parts that are likely to be key for the safe operation of a device that can slam into rocks quite quickly. So as the cranks detach during such a scenario and the wheels explode in a direct huff to my ineptitude, I shall be thinking “Ah HAH, the purpose of the 3mm grang-o-gromet is now clear to me“. Before crashing into the ground resets the priority of my pontificating gland.

I have mathematically modelled bike maintenance with the number-of-cycles squared equation. Two bikes takes twice as much time, three bikes, at least twice as much AGAIN. The SX has had so little lovin’ for example, the rear mech offered a choice of two gears separated by 9 desperate thumb shifts and 31 rusty spokes. And a bent one, which is so far beyond my ability to fix, I’ve ironed it.

A real solution is to outsource the entire spannering process to a man with a proper job and a confident tooly glint in his eye. Failing that – as it costs money I’d rather spend fixing my mistakes – I could dramatically improve my fettling skills. Since that’s pretty unlikely as well, the current limit of my ambition is for two of the “fixed” bikes to magically sync up their dodgy shifting, and the remaining long ‘to do’ list to JUST GET DONE.

A lack of wizardry leaves me with no option other than to phone a friend. Because, as of this morning, let me tell you how I’m feeling. Properly spannered.

* I chose that verb with care. The idea of removing my tools to a place of safety will surely prevent my increasing violent wielding on innocent bicycles. This could all go to shit tho as I’m taking my biggest hammer with me.

** Similar to masturbated. Much wiggling of hands and cleaning up of unpleasant fluids. Scraped knuckles optional.

*** Or beer as it is sometimes known after 6pm.

4 thoughts on “Maintenance maketh the man…

  1. Tim

    You never know, without your tools for a few weeks might actually mean your bikes will keep working…


  2. Alex

    It can’t get any worse! How the hell did I bend a spoke on the SX. I’ve come to the conclusion I lent it to someone who only went and rode it properly.

    Two more hours and most things work. I haven’t actually ridden further than down the road but at least they all look like working bikes again.

    I think I earned a beer 🙂

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