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#30daysofbiking: Day 17

April 17, 2012

On my way home this weekend I noticed a new clicking sound from my bike. We’ve been through a few miles together so I’m keen to any abnormalities. But I was tired and decided this problem would work itself out.

On my morning commute today, I noticed the click persisting. I got off the bike, shook the wheels, shook the chain, shook the seat, shook the crank and just about everything else. This is the toilet bowl method to bike repair. That is when your toilet keeps running – you shake it and the problem goes away. Click, click, click. Not this time.

Next was troubleshooting the component that might not be working. Gears shifted smooth – maybe too smoothly and silently. In fact, the derailleur was not moving the chain from 5th to 6th gear. Once hitting 7th, the chain jumped two rings. Boy, I hope my derailleur wasn’t bent. Before my evening ride, I consulted longtime expert mechanic, Google for advice. He said I should just turn the barrel adjuster on the rear derailleur clockwise a half turn on so (and counter-clockwise if the chain skipped going towards the spokes). After some tinkering, normal operation returned and I was free to enjoy the great weather. Shifting now seems quicker and more responsive than ever so maybe was needed for a while.

Few things are more gratifying than getting grease on your hands to fix your problems.

Distance: 17.2 miles

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