Better than Nothing

Well, all my insane preparation payed off. I rode in to work. So that’s 6 miles of Jihad. Assuming I go home, and assuming you count lunch, it’ll be 24 miles.That’s already much better than last week’s zero miles.

The location of my new apartment means that I’ll save almost a gallon of gas per day if I ride my bike. Gas is $2 a gallon (more or less), and there are 20 work days per month (more or less). That’s $40/month!

Add that to the $150 bucks/month I’m saving by not smoking anymore, and we’re up to $190/month!

Now I don’t feel so bad about buying so much silly stuff from the Rivendell Catalog 🙂

Ride Home:

There are several ways to get home. I thought I had a cool route that would make the sharp hill at the end of my commute a little shallower, but no such luck. I had to get off and push. I really need to take the Trek to the LBS and get the inner chainring repaired.

The Trek came with really lame gearing. The chainrings are 50-44-28. I have never needed the 50-tooth ring for anything. and I use the 44 for almost everything now, so effectively, I have a 6-speed bike. I’m thinking about getting a 48-38-28 set for it. That way, the big ring is still 4 more teeth than I ever use, the middle ring will be a bit more useable, and I’ll have the 28-toother for climbing the hill loaded up with groceries. (The grocery store is at the bottom of the hill.)

Anyone have an experience changing chainrings on old touring bikes? Can a mechanical dumbass such as myself tackle a job like this? Do I need any special tools? (I’m assuming I need a crank puller and a hex wrench).

I may convert to bar-end shifters while I’m at it. I think one of the reasons I never use the big ring is that it would only come in handy on fast descents, and I’m too chicken to reach for the downtube shifters at those times.

I use the big ring on the Lemond all the time (it’s fun to blast down hills). The Lemond has STI though, so it’s easy.

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