Bike Shaped Objects

Funky bikes and news
Broke Back Bike

My bike broke its leg so I had to shoot it.

First my axle broke, so I bought a new one. While trying to install the new axle I found that the inside of the hub was trashed. I looked up on the web and all the sites suggested the worst. It took me three days to get up the courage to measure it, but when I did it showed what I feared. The dropouts, the hooks at the back of the frame that hold the wheel in place, where way out of alignment. The frame on one side had buckled. Being an aluminum frame that’s pretty terminal. I found one place that said they could fix it for only twice what I paid for the whole bike in the first place.

So after some deliberation I’ve decided to re-purpose the eBaby from a racing bike to a commuter. Basically just add a rack, a more comfortable seat and some fatter tires. With my heart the way it is I don’t think I’ll be racing, well, ever, so I have no need for a racing bike.

So the poor Lambo has seen it’s last mile. It’s funny how many people warned me that the bike would fall apart after a couple hundred miles. About that much short of four thousand miles it did finally fail. Not to bad for $225 bike.

It’s weird how sad I feel about this. This bike has taken me many places. I have much more an attachment to it than any previous bike. Probably because I took it more miles than all my other bikes combined.

It will live on in a way. I’m going to strip the frame clean and use the parts on other project bikes. Sort of a cycling organ donor.

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Long Term Review – Lamborghini Rapido (a.k.a. GMC Denali)

My favorite thing about this bike is how bike snobs continually tell me how I’ll be sorry I bought it because after a couple hundred miles it will be falling apart. So far I’ve put 2300 miles on it and it’s running great.

Of course the bike isn’t really built by Lamborghini, or GMC for that matter. It’s a Kent, the maker/importer of many a cheap bike. Some of them a good, some aren’t. This one seems to be one of the good ones, and you can pick one up at Wally World for $165.

At first glance the drop handlebars and aluminum frame give the appearance of a road bike, but overall I’d consider it a hybrid or commuter bike. The frame is much lighter than many cheap bikes but would be considered a heavyweight by most bike snobs. For me, at well over 200 pounds, its weight is just right.

breakdowns? One, and that was a spoke that snapped off at the nipple. I tore down the wheel and the rest of the spokes looked fine.

Maintenance? Fairly constant. The Shimano Tourney drive train needs adjustment on a monthly basis. After two years of no trouble I recently had to lube the pedals. Something I should probably do more often anyways. I replaced the brake pads at 1800 miles not so much for wear but for becoming hard. The rear caliper has given me no trouble but the front needs adjustment every other month or so.

One of the biggest surprises has been the wheels. Three years of hard SF commuting and the front is showing only the slightest hint of a wobble and the rear is still straight and true.

So entering it’s fourth season of commuting it’s still going strong. Not bad for a cheap bike. And oh yeah, still nobody’s tried to steal it.

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