Tweaks, Round 1

Problems solved. Well, some of them, at least.

above horsethief bench

Last Sunday, I took the bike out for a shakedown ride on some trails around Navajo Rocks. During the ride, I identified a list of things to address. I addressed some of the issues and went for another ride on it yesterday.

32T chainring

Here's where we stand:

  1. Rear hub: the hub uses sealed cartridge bearings which appear to spin smoothly. This is a very cheap hub and the freehub is not removable from the hub without special tools. I do have a spare Shimano hub that I could swap in—the sizes are similar enough that I should be able to use the spokes that I have. However, I didn't notice too much noise from the freehub during yesterday's ride, so I don't think this is anything urgent.
  2. Seatpost clamp: I added the bolt-on seatpost clamp and this seems to have helped. I still saw a little bit of slippage so I'll clean off the grease and keep an eye on it.
  3. Brake lever reach: I reduced the reach on the brake levers a little. I still need to play with the angle of the levers more to find the best place. Normally I have them pretty far down but when I'm descending they're a little awkward to reach (and that's when I need them most!).
  4. Viscoset: I haven't done anything with this yet.
  5. 180mm rear brake rotor: I installed a cheapo 180mm rotor that I had sitting around. It doesn't work well as the front. I have a Shimano 180mm rotor on the way.
  6. 32T chainring: Installed. Helps on the climbs. It's too low for most cases but perfect for those few times you need it.
  7. Tire pressures: I set the pressures to 20 psi front and 25 psi rear. This was a significant improvement and felt pretty good for the terrain on the trails I was riding yesterday. I added 1 psi to each tire and will try that for the next time out.

seatpost clamp

I'm hoping to get out on this bike again tomorrow or Friday.