I can change a flat tire, clean and lube my chain, change tires, check my brakes for clearance and remaining life, and clean my frame.
I'm not so good with cable tension, though my cute bike shop boy has shown me and explained how it works more than once.
I haven't yet attempted to re-tape my handlebars, and I stay far, far away from chain repairs.
I carry tire levers, a spare tube, two cartridges and a cartridge holder-thingee, a small amount of cash, and a teeny tube patch kit.
I don't carry a chain tool because I would have no idea what to do with it.
yesterday during my ride ruby would occasionally slip gears, jumping to a different gear when I had not asked her to do so. this is usually (in Susan's Bicycle Maintenance Book) an issue of cable length: some cable needs to be tightened or loosened. yep. it didn't happen too terribly often, though, and I just placed it in that awesome bin of information called To Deal With.
today, I set off for my ride and ruby had a hard time holding steadily in a gear, beginning with the first block. hmm. well, I decided, I would just stay in my baby gears, spin more, try not to put too much load on the darn girl, and maybe mess with the cables when I got home.
two miles later, pulled off to the side of emigration canyon road, I discovered the real problem: a bad link in my chain.
I don't mess with chains.
well, not much, and not well. I pushed the problem pin back in but the link still looked fat and distinctly different from its neighbors.
the next twenty feet up the road went smoothly but the twenty-first foot was a problem: the chain failed, locking up, stopping me instantly.
I caved. I smushed the pin back in and limped ruby back home. where I then placed her gently in my car and drove to the bike shop for help.
where Mike Hanseen, owner of Millcreek Bicycles, fixed my chain immediately and charged me less than the price of a Domino's pizza. (this happened after his shop tech suggested I leave it until tomorrow evening, my face fell, and I moaned, oh, I can't possibly live without my bike that long....)
mike just made a new friend. me.
I will tell every biking friend I have about what he did for me.
I will shop there.
I will buy unnecessary things, just to support this guy who went beyond what many would have done.
because he cared enough to make a ten-minute repair on the spot so that I could ride my bike
3969 south wasatch boulevard, slc, ut, 84124
ask for mike, tell him you made susan's day.