Bicycle Maintenance

Tuesday, I took a break from walking/hiking and got the Mountain Bike down. A modest 10.1 mile loop, including an 800 ft climb to get into the park, and my butt was kicked. There is a big difference in the muscles you use to hike the same trail you ride up, and dayum, it was a brutal day.

Of course, since this is the first time I had the Specialized Crave Expert out in a while, I noticed that I had been a laggard on my maintenance. Yes, the last time out it was slightly muddy, so the bike was a bit, uh, ugly, but nothing was broken.

However, it became clear that the shifters needed to be tweaked. After shifting up, there was a slight noise from the derailleur, hinting that the indexing was ever so slightly off. So up on the rack it went. Then I noticed that the chain was pretty dry, so I got out the degreaser, and the wash bucket out, and gave it a good cleaning. After drying it off, and a few trips up and down the street to work the water out of the chain, I liberally applied my latest lube of choice, Purple Extreme, and I noticed that the rear brake pads were about shagged. Less than a half mm remaining.

Fortunately, I had a spare set, and they were brain dead simple to replace, taking longer to remove and replace the rear wheel than to swap the well worn pads with fresh ones, and I was back on the road. The bonus is that where I thought I needed to bleed the disc lines, the new pads returned the firm feel at the lever. Cool.

Tomorrow, I will slather on the sun screen and head out for another butt kicker ride. One day, I will finally replace the tires with something more appropriate to our baked, clay-hard terrain. But that is for a different session

Apartment Living – Maintenance

There is one benefit of leasing an apartment (or even a house) that I was looking forward to: Your landlord is responsible for all the routine maintenance. No longer if the plumbing springs a leak, or a drain clogs, or a hot water heater dies, do I need to call a repairman or roll up my sleeves and get it fixed. Woo hoo. Or is it?

Alas, there are downsides. We have had a couple of minor issues, and one major issue. The minor ones were simple things (a broken door knob, and some irrigation issues at our old temporary place, and a broken built in microwave).

I suspect that if there was something urgent, the maintenance team would be very responsive, but anything else will take some time.

After living here for less than 2 weeks, our Microwave broke. Just stopped working. Checked the breakers, checked the outlet, alas, it was dead. Sigh.

Called the office. The next day their maintenance man came and tried the same things I did. No luck.

Sidebar: He claimed that it was “Brand New” and that it was installed just before we moved in. Total bullshit, as the plastic facade has been scrubbed with something like a 3M green scrubbie… Nice try to guilt us.

They ordered a replacement (the brand is Hotpoint, not a typical brand), and it would take a week to arrive.

Sigh

Friday it arrived, but it was too late for them to replace it. So it will be Monday between 9:00 and 11:00AM.

It sucks to not have a microwave.

If it was at my house, where I owned it, I would have gone to Lowe’s and bought a new microwave the next day, and replaced it myself.