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Sunday, October 14, 2012


A relative of mine has been discussing me taking their old bike off their hands for most of the year. So I finally agreed to take it after they convinced me that the only way they will ride a bike again is if it is brand new and sparkling clean. That is definitely NOT what this bike is. So that excludes this bike from their future.

This is an almost twenty year old Ross road bike. But the years of garage time have been harsh.

The rims are rusted. Whatever the coating is on the rims is bubbling and flaking. The seat is drying out.

The cables are brittle. The cable shields are marred and brittle.

There is an old combination cable lock all rusty and frozen wrapped around the seat tube. The combination long since forgotten.
There is rust on the forks.
The chainring and chainring guard and crankset and pedals are all weathered to a dull lusterless shine.

The Ross decal seems to be the only thing untouched by weather.
Even the paint job has permanent marks in it.
The translucency of the plastic cassette gives the appearance of looking thru dirty dishwater. 
The handlebars soft protective foam is dry rotted and split.
The handlebars, stem, and gear changing levers are all dull and rusty.
And last but not least, the inner tubes and treads are dry rotted. So I am going to take on the task of fixing or repairing or replacing parts on this bike all winter until I have a nice road bike to ride. I started by using a wet rag to wipe the frame down.
As you can see in the above picture, I have managed to get a bit of a shine on the bike seat again with some leather wipes. Some permanent marks can be seen on the surface. I will try to use this seat until I don't like it anymore or it splits. I have the old seat from my folding bike that will work just fine in that case.
I have removed the front wheel so that I can clean it and remove the old tube and tread.

I went to the local bike shop and picked up some tubes and treads and a few other things.
The other things I bought are brake cables and cable housing. A few crimp ends and stand offs are in the bag.
     By the time I have gotten to the end of this blog posting I have finished cleaning the front rim and installing the new tube and tread. An up close look at the rim has shown flaking and rust. I am not sure if I want new rims. And if so should I get something like those plastic rims or maybe some colored rims? So far the bike has cost me zero and the parts listed above were $125. The treads were $45 apiece. I guess that the rims that came with the bike will have to do for now until I at least can establish the working condition of the rest of the bike. More updates later.