The Golden Wrench

A blog about bicycle repair and maintenance by the mechanics at Freewheel Bike.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Who needs cars?

In addition to being a great bike route for heading across town, the Greenway has been a pretty popular destination unto itself this summer. Several bike-related events have taken place outside our front door here at the Shockspital/Midtown Bike Center the past couple weeks. Here's a shot from the Tour de Cure, where we had a roadside service tent set up: can't appreciate from that photo the number of riders that were out there, but trying to cross the Greenway on foot was like a real-life Frogger experience. Here's a shot from the New Belgium Brewing Urban Assault Ride that better conveys numbers: the foreground you can see the obstacle course that participants had to navigate at this stop. And check out that line! Here's a shot from the other direction:

Seems to me some of those folks should have saved this stop for later. It was supposedly a race. But what do I know?

The point is, I don't think I've ever seen more bikes on the road (and path) than I have the last couple weeks. Good job, people!

Friday, June 1, 2012

We love Leftys....

...but here's an example of a first-generation Lefty that we can't really do much for. These early forks had a one-time press-fit adjuster knob that we can't replace, which means that we also can't replace the upper oil cap seal, which is one of the main culprits in damper failures. If your external adjuster knobs look like this:'s a bad start. The red rebound adjuster has no visible set screw (because there is no set screw), and when you pull it straight out you see this:

And then you can pull the lockout knob off and see this:

...which is a black plastic piece instead of a silver aluminum nut the same size. (If you remove the upper collar and pull that black nut off you can peer down into the fork and see the aluminum nut we can't replace.) These clues indicate that your Lefty is too old for us to fix.

Most of our customers who are still riding these forks will be faced with the tough choice of which modern Lefty to buy to replace their old fork. Which, if you divide the cost of a new Lefty over all the years they've been riding their old one, isn't as expensive as it first sounds.