Friday, December 24, 2010

My poor bike, all frozen up!

Yesterday I had to go buy some presents. Very last minute shopper, that's me. :)

I threw some clothes on and went to find my bike. It was a cold day (-26C) but I was safe from frostbites because I have EST. I had left my bike outside the last time I rode it, instead of carrying it to the warm bike garage in the 
basement. There was some snow on the handlebars and the seat, but that was  quickly cleaned.

When I was cycling I noticed my bike felt a little 'off' and it took me a while to figure out the reason. At first I thought I had something wrong with the tires (like too low air pressure or something) because I felt a little unbalanced. It felt like the front tire was in a groove and I had to turn the handlebar harder than normal. Well, when I found out the reason I felt really sorry for my poor bike.

The grease on the bearings in the steering tube was frozen. There was a noticeable resistance to turning the handlebar. I could lock the brakes on the front wheel and lift the rear wheel up. The rear end of the bike stayed up in the air, instead of falling down. I wish I could have taken a photo if it, but there was nobody around right then.

There were a few other cyclists about despite the cold weather. I took some snapshots but they were not good so I'm not posting them. Bad lighting conditions and a little blurred. Usually I take several shots to see which settings work best. Not this time :) A metal frame camera is not perfect for cold weather. I doubt -26C is in the range of operation temperatures in the manual for the camera either. I don't even try to make cycling videos with my MD80 clone in the winter - its too dark and the battery has no juice in below -10C conditions.

Yes, the bike is in the garage again!

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