Lots and lots of work on my mountain bike lately. I'm sure nobody cares but me, but just so I have notes somewhere, here's the rundown.
Fork: Fox Float 32 Factory 29er
My Marzocchi has been on its last legs for years, so when I spotted a closeout deal on a top of the line Fox, I jumped on it.
The first shake-out ride definitely felt weird, and I was worried that I'd bought a fork that was radically unsuited to my frame. But the geometry on the Fox is pretty close to the Marzocchi, so I was skeptical that a few mm here and there could add up to what I was feeling.
I made some adjustments, did another short, easy ride, and something was definitely still not right. So I got out the tools and got down to business.
There was a little play at the crown, and some really noticeable stickiness when turning the bars. It felt nearly identical to when I first got my bike, and put the headset together incorrectly. So I pulled everything apart, and discovered that I'd forgotten to install the crown race. Doh.
I fixed my mistake, and everything feels much better.
The bearings in my rear hub were complaining, so I decided to replace them with the spares I bought last time.
Unfortunately, my improvised bearing press damaged the new bearings on the way in. (Hardly surprising.) When I turned the axle it felt like it was dipped in crunchy peanut butter. Bah.
So I ordered new bearings and a set of over-axle drift adapters. Still kind of half-assed, but it worked well enough. The whole thing went together nice and smooth, and the rear wheel is now spinning perfectly.
Stan's Rim Tape
A couple of flats lately damaged the rim tape on my rear wheel to the point where it simply wasn't holding air any more. So I bit the bullet, ordered the tape, and replaced the tape that came installed with the wheels.
The wheel is losing air between rides, so I clearly did an imperfect job. But it's holding plenty well enough to ride on. When I have the time & energy, I'll take another crack at taping the rim.
New GPS Mount
In the course of monkeying with my bars, I managed to break my Barfly 3.0 GPS mount. The Barfly 4.0 is every bit as terrible as the 3.0 is wonderful. (Heavier, bulkier, requires a shim for my bars.) So I've opted for a Sram Quickview mount, which is basically the same as the old Barfly.
Saddle: Ergon SMR-3 Comp
I'd noticed my rear brake was rubbing a bit on the rotor. Further inspection revealed that the pads weren't retracting evenly. So I set about to bleed the brake & get everything humming again.
Unfortunately, attempting to unscrew the top bleed port stripped the torx nut. And attempting to make half-assed adjustments via the bottom bleed port just left me with a brake that needed fluid and still wasn't retracting evenly.
And that's where I finally said uncle. I'm gonna have some time next week to either ride or wrench, but not both, especially if I can't make the repairs myself.
Hitting the Trail
I'm really looking forward to getting out for a ride next week. We'll see how that goes. Most of the time I've spent with my bike over the last couple of weeks has been spent wrenching. I'm really looking forward to actually enjoying the benefits of all these upgrades and repairs. It's fun to tinker, but I'm so, so ready to forget about the details and just ride.