A blog about skating and cycling, or vice versa


Wed, 18 Feb 2015 00:53:47 +0000

This is a very short post to note that the Coruskate blog is available on the internet again, and may even get updated from time to time. Recap:

Recreational riding/skating: almost none.


Wed, 07 Jul 2010 10:26:19 +0000

Another in the occasional series of bike frobbing: this time it's not my bike it's my wife's. Lessons learnt stripping down a Sturmey Archer AW hub

What I wish I'd known prior to starting

1) sweep the floor before starting, because at least one bearing and one pawl spring will end up there at some point and the latter are a real bitch to find

2) the instruction to "hammer and punch to unscrew the right-hand ball ring" really is a good one - straight up, this is the only way to get it off. They don't mention giving it half a can of wd40 and an hour to soak in, through, which was also necessary on my specimen

What I wish I'd paid more attention to in Sheldon's instructions

3) don't hold it vertically, something will fall out (see (1))

4) when the ball ring eventually starts moving, control your feelings of success and elation for at least long enough to mark the relative positions of hub and shell. The shell has a dual-start thread and it's apparently important to put it back on the same track it came off (no, I don't know why). I forgot to do this, so tried it both ways when reassembling and went for the thread with less wobble - hope that was the right decision

Other than that, I got it apart successfully, found nothing obviously wrong but plenty of grunge, so degrunged, regreased bearing races, reassembled, refilled with oil and put it back on the bike. Seems to run a lot smoother, but still doesn't much like shifting down while the bike is stopped (ok if you backpedal a bit first, but that's not an easy task when you're stopped at a light with one foot on the ground). Which is a shame because if you don't have shifting while stopped you might as well have got a derailleur in the first place.

From http://www.cyclechat.net/forums/showthread.php?p=1330961#post1330961

See also http://www.sheldonbrown.com/sturmey-archer/aw.html

Give me a lever#

Tue, 22 Jun 2010 16:34:34 +0000

The Eagle is back together in fixed format and I have successfully ridden it around the block without falling off (and mostly without forgetting to keep pedalling). The gear train is a little noisier than I expected, I think because the chain rattles a bit - I can hear it when I spin the cranks by hand but it's inaudible over the rattle of the front mudguard when the bike is on the road. Chainline is, as near as I can see it, straight. I don't think the lockring is as tight as it should be, but I don't plan on skid stops anyway. I hope the cranks are tight. I continue to live in fear of pedal strike.

Pictured here after the removal of all the derailleur-related paraphernalia (at least, all that does not require a hacksaw to get off) and application of Brasso on some of the bits I thought ought to be shiny bits. Replacement handlebar grips still on the agenda, but I'm waiting to see what I think of the front brake (I have spare aero levers in a box somewhere) before I start retaping anything

48x16 on 622-23 wheels (that's 700 x 23 in old money) should be about 78 gear inches (sez Sheldon ) , but it doesn't feel like hard work.

Half the gear, no idea#

Tue, 15 Jun 2010 22:00:30 +0000

Short shameful confession: I am halfway to owning a fixed-gear bicycle.

I say halfway. I am some portion of the way to owning a fixed-gear bicycle, but as yet it's impossible to quantify the effort remaining.

It's the usual story. When looking for a replacement for my Orbit I accidentally bought an early 80s Coventry Eagle (27" wheels) using Ebay - was expecting it to go for more than the £40-odd I bid. It's basically rideable, though the brakes don't really stop it and the stem-mounted friction shift levers don't provide quite the rapid, accurate, and above all quiet shifting that even cheap Campag Ergos have let me become accustomed to. So after riding around for a few days in an 81" gear I decided that I might as well make the grand leap and fixify it. Since it has a rack and full mudguards and drop handlebars and two brakes, I'm never going to get mistaken for a Hoxton hipster - though it helps also in that regard that I no longer live near Hoxton and more importantly that I intend to actually ride the thing, not just push it along on the pavement.

Thus far, serendipity has come through for me: I bought a new pair of (dirt cheap) 700C wheels that came with a 16T sprocket but that's been the only expenditure so far. The existing brake calipers have enough reach to contact the rim, and the rear dropouts are 120 OLN so no messing with cold-setting or spacers. And I found an unused chain and a pair of SPD pedals in my bits box. But then this afternoon I got to the point of removing the spare chainring and I found that there's no spider - the crank is attached directly to the outer ring so I can't move it to the inside and get a viable chainline. Then I noticed also that: the chainring is bent anyway; the bottom bracket makes ugly graunching noises; my socket set has gone walkabout and I cen't even get the damn chainset off anyway. So, it looks like this is not going to be a zero-cost conversion after all, and while I research the competing merits of Stronglight and Lasco (I really ought to get 165mm just to avoid the pedal strike spectre) my bike is in bits across the study floor.

I'm also tempted to give it a good clean and a T-cut treatment, but since its destiny is to get locked to random Sheffield stands all over London I'm not sure I want to make it any more desirable to tealeafs than I have to.

Anyone want some used-but-functional Suntour ARX mechs and shifters? I expect someone out there collects this stuff, but I have to caution you it's not quite concourse condition.

Red Orbit road bike stolen from London W2, 9th May #

Mon, 10 May 2010 11:08:50 +0000

More in hope than expectation: if anyone sees my red bike around the place in future, it was stolen from round the back of Whiteleys in Queensway on Sunday and is no longer in my possession :-( Feel free to padlock it to the nearest solid object and give me a call to come and collect it

That photo's not entirely up to date: when stolen it was wearing cheap wheels with black slightly-aero rims (not Campags), and also had lights, a rack, pannier, and bar tape

On the lookout for a new around-town bike now ...