Sunday, June 13, 2010

Don't Know What You Got (Till It's Gone)

Where "it" is crappy shifting, the result of dirty old cables and housing on the mountain bike. It had gotten to the point where the chain basically just refused to drop onto the highest gear in the back.

I swapped everything today with a set of Gore's sealed low friction cables and housing. Granted, even a plain old new set of housing would have felt sixty or seventy times better than what I was running, thanks to a long, wet, muddy spring, preceded by a muddy/snowy winter. Those poor cables were definitely ready for retirement.

Installing the Gore system was a little more involved, with the extra steps added for running the liner, but beyond that it was pretty easy. The hardest part was threading the new cable into the rear shifter. I think that was mainly due to the cable being a little stiffer because of the plastic coating surrounding it. I ended up using some wire from a twist-tie to thread the cable through the channel in the shifter and out to the barrel. It took some time to figure out, but it worked pretty well.

Once everything was in place, I started running through all of the gears, and at first I was worried that I had somehow screwed up the shifters because I hardly had to exert any energy at all to shift the rear derailleur. It was ridiculously easy. And smooth. And I could shift up and down through all gears, front and back.

Coming soon: a new (2009 model year) fork!