Jan 5, 2003 2:00 AM
|It was a nice day today - about 38 degrees, with a nice breeze out of the west. The snow and ice had melted off the shoulders of the highway, so I dragged the Jamis outside and headed east (with the wind!!). I was racing my wife, who, after running some errands was going to give chase in the Saturn, and then after picking me up somewhere along the highway we'd head into a nearby city for some shopping. I haven't been on the bike since before Christmas (pneumonia, year-end at work, etc...), so I was really excited to hit the road again!
About 20 minutes into the ride I started to hear a rythmic squeaking. It sounded like I needed to grease the pedals, which is odd, 'cause the bike only has about 100 miles on it. As I continued the squeaking got progressively worse. I began to wonder if I had missed the obvious, so I shifted to the small ring, and sure enough, the squeaking got worse - much worse. I really, really hate noisy chains, and I began to feel like stopping at a farmhouse to bum some oil, but with my wife hot on my heels I didn't want to shorten the ride. But the noise was driving me crazy!
Tortured by the shreaking chain I crested a hill. Picking up speed I shifted into the big ring, and ran the gears quickly up (down??) into the small cog. To my amazement, as soon as I hit top gear the squeaking stopped! "Hmmmm..." I thought to myself. I quickly downshifted, and the squealing was back. Upshift, no noise. Downshift, scream. And then the light came on. I downshifted a couple of gears and tugged gently on the exposed shifter cable - and the noise went away! Shazam! Two quick revolutions of the barrel adjuster and joy of joys, my shifting was perfectly adjusted! And I continued on in perfect silence, revelling in the surreal feeling of flying along at 32 km/h in dead air. I love riding with the wind!
P.S. I lubed the chain the second we got home! And I don't recommend this method of adjusting your gears... (Jeez, did I just say "Shazam?")