Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Ebikin' 2


"She may not look like much, but she's got it where it counts, kid." -Solo to Luke about the Millennium Falcon

This is my ebike. 1989(ish) Rockhopper, acquired in the late 1990s. Original (to me) parts: wheels, seat stem, brakes, kickstand, frame, pedals. Pretty much everything else got replaced, either through normal maintenance, my previous program of "making the bike comfortable for a middle aged guy whose hands (and junk) don't like being beaten on" or as part of the BBS02 kit install.

Since you asked, the seat is an ISM touring model (I think. It looks like them, anyway.)  The idea is it only supports your "sitting bones" the bottom of your pelvis, rather than pressing on your tail bone, your crotch, etc etc.  It works for me.

Biggest pains in the rear partswise: the fork and headstock bearings. 1 inch quill front ends on mountain bikes have gone the way of the dodo, for the most part. Getting a fork that fits took me a couple tries. The headstock bearings were a pain mostly because (I think) my headstock is slightly out of round at the bottom. The top race pressed in without a fuss. The bottom? Not so much. In any case, it works and it seems solid now.

Lessons learned: 1. A sledge hammer is almost always the wrong tool on bikes. 2. So is a Sawzall. 3. So is a crowbar. It's a good thing I didn't need to reuse that crank bearing cartridge, or the old cranks themselves. Nuff said.

Sometimes the custom bike tools really are the best way to go. Crank pullers and chain breakers are high on this list. Get good ones. I twisted a Walmart chain breaker into scrap metal in about an hour of use. Also, if you're putting in the BBS02 kit, spring for the Bafang wrench to go with it. Feeling flush? Get the Bafang socket set instead. Lunacycle has both. Repair chain links are worth having, but the special pliers aren't. (These are the KMC type) You can set them with the shaft of a punch (press down between the rollers and wiggle until the link latches on both sides), or just get on the bike and stomp on the pedals a few times, and you can punch the shafts/rivets out of them with a chain breaker just like you can regular chain links. If you have a good chain breaker.

Special chain lube? Mm. Mine's new, and has its factory grease/oil, which is very sticky indeed. I've read that this is excellent lubrication and to leave it that way until it squeaks. After that, I have a gallon of lathe way oil for the job.  Don't ask why. It's a long story. It's the same story as why everything else is/will be lubed with lathe spindle oil, also from a gallon jug. Or one of two tubes (another long story) of white lithium grease. Will this bite me down the road? Maybe. But I'll learn something, at least.

"I am smiling a great smile. The smile of a man who f***ed with his car and  didn't break it." - Andy Weir, The Martian

Why not just buy an ebike? That, mostly.

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