Monthly Archives: February 2009

More Bike Build

After putting on the crank it was simply bolting everything else into place.

The rear derailer:



Front derailer:

DSC03616_edited-1 For the front derailer you have to install so the height is only a few mm above the teeth. To take the guess work out of this Shimano put that little red sticker that you can in the picture. It has little wavy outlines for the teeth and you just adjust the height until they are aligned. 

Front and Rear brakes.



And the shifters:



This phase of the build was very easy it was just bolting things into place and at the correct torque.

The last few steps required a little more thought and tweaking.

The Best Diet

I saw this story earlier in the week. A study that compared the differences in popular diets. It found they all worked about the same and came to this startling conclusion:

Eat fewer calories than you expend.

Thanks for the heads up but I think science proved that a while ago.

First Steps in Bike Build


Starting with the bare frame the first thing I did was attach the steam, handlebars, and seat. This was simply a matter of bolting things into place.




Making sure things were positioned correctly were not important at this point because I would have to fine tune the positions at the end project.


The next things was to install the crank. This consisted of a two parts.

For the type of crank that I got the first step was to install the bottom bracket cups. This screws into the bottom bracket (hole at the bottom of the frame) and acts as a place for the crank to sit for the specific diameter it is. There is a certain amount of torque you have to apply to each side so it doesn’t slip. For this you do need a special wrench, one that aligns with the notches you can see in the picture.


With the bottom bracket cups firmly in place the next step was to install the crank itself.


I didn’t take a picture of it so I pulled this one from the web below to show the axle the crank spins on. To install the crank it’s just jamming the rod through the bottom bracket on the frame. It’s a tight fit so you need a rubber mallet or something else to “hammer” the crank completely through the bottom bracket.

Once you have the right hand side of the crank in you need to install the other arm. There is small piece of black plastic that needs to be screwed on and requires another special tool. I didn’t get a picture of this so this one is from the web as well. With the cap screwed on all that’s left is to tighten the bolts on the left crank arm.

The instructions say to torque the bolts evenly and to a specific level. This is where I was very glad to have my torque wrench because it would suck to have a crank arm fall off while biking because the bolts weren’t tight enough.

Below are some pictures with the crank installed on the bike.



A couple of things to note, detailed instructions with torque settings came with the parts and I used those to guide my installation along with a book on bike maintenance I have. Also all the parts that I used came pre-greased and lubed as needed. If you have used parts or a different brand you may have to grease certain parts and use an anti-locking material on the bottom bracket cup threads.

This was the only part of the installation that I was worried about and it was surprisingly simple.

Bike Build

Working on and off for past week I went from this:


To a complete and working bike.


All told I spent about five hours working on the bike, a lot less then I was expecting. Most of those hours were spent at the end adjusting the cable tensions to get the shifting right. When I do it again it should take even less time.

I need to put the bike on the trainer tomorrow and adjust the seat and shifters to fit me and then tape the bars.

I was really surprised at how easy this  was. There are a few special tools that are needed but with these it’s simply a matter of bolting everything and then fooling around with the cables. I’m going to write up some posts this week about how to do each step and include some pictures.


I wanted to read it before the movie came out so I bought Watchmen last week and finished it up last night.


There has been a lot of hype around this movie but I didn’t really get it after seeing the trailers. Now I get it and really excited to see the movie. I want to see what they do with the story and what they add / subtract. Visually it looks like it will be amazing, and I’m going to try and see it in IMAX.


Overall I was very impressed with the story and how it was written, not a lot of wasted time. I’m not going to write about the story line in case you haven’t read it but I would recommend doing so before seeing the movie.

I enjoyed the graphic novel format because you have dialog  to develop the characters and story but there are also the visual elements relating to story as you read along.  I’m sure there were lots of visual clues in the background that I missed along the way and I should go back and reread it. There are also little text segments at the end of each chapter that provide a little more context and add to the story. The story itself is very dark and does a great job of bringing up moral issues and makes you “would I do that?”

So my verdict is read it if you haven’t yet.

The Letter G

It took about a month until I figured out these ads where for Gatorade. Really how I am I suppose to know this is for Gatorade.

Was there even a need to do this? Everyone knew what Gatorade was and liked it. I don’t think the change was necessary and I don’t really like it. I want to some cold “Gatorade”  when I get done running not “G”.

 They started advertising “G Moments” at Super Bowl and it seemed like they told sponsored athletes to try and work it into all their interviews, it really pissed me off.

Maybe I should switch to Powerade? I’ll never have to worry about them shortening the name. Because the conversation would go like this:

“Wow that was a tough workout, I really need a cold bottle of P”

MCRRC Country Road Run 5 mile Race

I did another MCRRCrace on Sunday, a 5 mile race in Olney MD  that took place at Olney Manor Park. I spent a lot of nights here playing baseball games, I would guess twenty to thirty games a year just at this field.

The was a simple out and back course and I was surprised to hear the road was not going to be closed to traffic but it was a sleepy back road so it wasn’t a big deal. I only saw two cars and so many people were on the road the cars had to go really slow anyway.


This weekend wasn’t as good as last and it was only in the 30’s at the start of the race but once I got going it didn’t really bother me.



The rae was very hilly, and I ran a little bit slower then I wanted to. I did 37:28 (just under 7:30 minutes per mile) I was shooting for around 36:00. It was fun to race again, and I was able to pick of f a few people towards the end of the race which is always fun.


After the race was a great spread of food, doughnuts, coffe, bagels and cream chesse, and bootles of “G”. Really gatorade what the hell, “G” just call it gatoradae.

And if you are a memberof the club, I think it was $10 or $15 for the year the race entry and the food is all free. It’s a great deal, you can’t beat it.

Step 1: Remove Parts from Old Bike

Step one in my new bike build was to strip all the old parts off my frame. I was successfully able to do that Saturday afternoon. The only problem was I broke my chain removal tool the first time I used it. I was probably using it wrong so I had to get a new one. 


The only other problem was when I was inspecting the frame. If you look in the picture, right above where the crank would be it looks like the frame is dented. I did some research on-line and it looks like could be an intentional dent to allow the front derailleur to move freely. I’m going to take it to a dealer Monday or Tuesday just to be safe, so that has delayed the next steps in my bike project.


Since I took all the parts off my bike I have them sitting in a box. The parts are past their prime and I wouldn’t put them on another frame so I’ll probably take apart all the pieces to see how the pulleys and springs work.


What’s in the Boxes

Here are pictures of all the parts out of the box:

The parts are: A crank-set, shifters, shift and brake cables, chain, seat, rear derailer, front derailer, bottom bracket, brakes, handle bar and steam, and a torque wrench to make sure the parts that are carbon do not get crushed and everything else is bolted on tight enough.

I am either going to take all the parts off my current road bike and put the new ones on or get a new frame. I still can’t make up my mind. I’m still searching ebay and looking for deals online.

Bike Build

I decided I want to learn how to build a bike, it seems like it would be fun. I ordered all the parts last week and they came in the mail today.


I am looking forward to learning how all the parts work and by putting one together myself I should learn how to do all my own maintenance so I don’t have to rely on the bike shop. Plus it should be fun.


The other thing I need to figure out is if I want to put the new parts on my current road frame or if I want to get a new one. I really can’t make up my mind on this one, there’s pro’s and con’s both ways.