Friday, April 25, 2014

Worn out

I was doing some bike maintenance the other day and snapped some pics of the tyres I was taking out/replacing.

Do you think this is worn enough to be replaced? The studded winter tyre, with nice little "grin" on the side. Not quite big enough for the inner tube to burst out, but not a lot longer and I'd get balloons. Well, that's for the next winter to worry about.
I'm not even 100% sure if this is the same tyre or the other one, but I think it is. Isn't the inside supposed to be smooth? Sidewall damage suggests I could poke my finger trough. The threads are visible and out all around the bottom.
The threads are even wearing marks on the inner tube. This photo shows the marks on the "contact patch" part of the tube, that is, the part which is flat against the ground. I had some other inner tubes which had similar marks on the sidewall part of the tube, as a result of sidewall damage on the outer tube, too low pressure I guess.
Well, now I got newly patched tyres and the ride is smooth again. I'll have to report later how my "saran wrap around the inner tube" experiment does.

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

The March report.

I've been meaning to write about the weird winter, but in the end I decided to save myself some work and not write. Excellent decision, for now I can wrap up March in one blog post. Here's the video version of the report:

Well, here goes: snow, melting, snow, melting, snow, melting. Early March it snowed about weekly, and it was white for a day, then the snow melted away. Now there's almost no snow left, except in the shadows of buildings and trees. And the bikeways are almost ice free, with the same exceptions as above. It feels like it should be later in April, but there hasn't been any snow for weeks. I often go cross country skiing on Easter, not a chance of that now. Unless we get a Putin-esque cold spell and new snow.

There's  a lot of brown grass visible, but it will take a while it could turn green. I did see some grass with a greenish tint on it, on a particularly sunny and warm spot, but as the nightly temperatures are below freezing (-11°C for tonight) and just a few degrees above during the night, the soil is still pretty frozen. Plants evaporating water but unable to suck in moisture from a frozen ground will get thirsty.

Anyway, the spring is here. I've even spotted some bikeways that were un-gritted, the sand had been swept away. Lots of sunshine, people on bikes and birds singing. And the monstrous woodpecker: