I had a plan for today, get up, breakfast, fit the new front brake to the bike, test ride the bike round the block, shopping and then out for a club ride this afternoon. What actually happen was, get up, breakfast, fit brake new to bike, take new brake off bike, fit new brake, take new brake off again, fit new brake on bike, take new brake………….. and so it went on. The problem was the brake calliper was rubbing on the brake disc. It did not matter what did I could not get it to fit. I made a phone call to my favourite bike shop to see what they said, they confirmed from my description I was doing everything right. In the end I decided to fit a new disc rotor, I was going to wait until the end of the month to buy a new one but they were cheap enough for a basic disc rotor so I opted to get one in the hope that it would solve the problem.
Back home with the new shiny rotor I quickly fitted the new rotor to the wheel refitted the wheel, fitted the brake calliper and it was still rubbing on the calliper. After checking the internet for inspiration I decided to take all the bits off and start again. It was only as I was taking the adaptor off the forks (for those non cyclist out there, there is an adaptor that fits onto the front forks that the brake calliper is bolted to), that I noticed that there was a small arrow printed on the adaptor saying up, it was currently pointing down doh! Refitted the adaptor the right way up, refitted the calliper, adjusted the fit and everything was working as it should. In my defence what I will say is the instruction that came with adaptor had drawing on showing the positioning of the adaptor on the forks, one picture showed my adaptor fitted to the forks in a position that was actually upside down. There were no specific instruction just general instruction, it was only the arrow on the adaptor which pointed out my error.
By now it was to late for the shopping or the club ride, so I opted for lunch and an afternoon ride on my own. I had been reading on the local club forum about exploring Ramsdown Forest, this is normally part of my Throop Loop ride. So I set off towards the Stour River which for a sunny afternoon was quite quiet, I was expecting a running battle with walkers and their dogs. If I need any proof that spring was here, a mouth full of bugs did that and had me grinding to a halt coughing and spluttering much to the amusement of those around me. I made it down to Throop Mill where I met two fire engines, an ambulance, ambulance car and a police car blocking the entire road. It seems as though somebody had had an accident on the river bank about half mile away and this was as close as they could get. As I crossed the bridge over the weir I could see a group of florescent green jackets down along the river bank to the west of the weir, I was heading east.
In Ramsdown Forest I decided to ride up to the view point, I have only done this once and as I want to improve my hill climbing it seemed like a good idea at the time. By the time I got to the top of was a gasping spluttering wreck again and again an amusement to those already at the top of the view point.
I took the opportunity to have a rest and take some photos (see below) before heading back down the way I came up. I did some more exploring around the forest and while I did try a couple of paths I had not ridden before none of them revealed anything special. From Ramsdown I decided to carry on like I would do on a Throop Loop and headed out towards Hurn Forest and then out onto Parley Common and home.
A very pleasant afternoon and where until near the end of the ride I actually felt I had a pair of riding legs, hopefully they will be there again tomorrow!!
Have you ever noticed that as soon as you try to get back on your feet, there is always somebody ready to push you back down. This week was supposed to be a turning point for us as their were two salaries going into our bank account, a first for many months and badly needed. It seems as though the bank and tax-man had other ideas. On the same day that the money went in we had a demanding letter from the bank and my tax code has changed which means I am paying more tax (no notification or warning). OK yes maybe it could be worse, we could of still been the position where only one salary was going into the bank but we put the effort into making things better for ourselves but some still wants to push us down.
For the past week or so I have been suffering with my right ear, I am prone to getting the small tube that runs between my nose and ear blocked, normally with snot when I have a bit of a head\nose cold. When it is blocked (like now) everything is muffled in my right ear along with a popping sound, particularly if I cough, sneeze or burp. Well today it got worse, I now have a dull ache in my ear and being a bank holiday weekend I can’t get to the doctors till Tuesday and it will have to be Tuesday evening as I have an important meeting to go to first thing Tuesday morning which I arranged and I can’t tell those attending not to turn up.
With the second of the four day bank holiday weekend upon us I was intending to ride the same as I did last week, 3 out of the 4 days. So wanting to avoid the media frenzy over the wedding yesterday I set off before 9am for the New Forest, judging by the amount of cyclist I past on the way (and counted while riding), I was not the only one avoiding the wedding. I had decided to ride from Burley out to Linwood and back in a round about way. It is a ride that I have done several times but I have never been happy with the end of the route so I have been looking for some alternative ending. Well yesterday final section was the best I found to date and I also cleared two of the hills for the first time and reasonably comfortably at that (for me). I was even happier when I got back to the car and realised I had done the 19.8 mile ride in 2hrs 14min, OK not fast by many peoples standards but fast by mine, I am a slow rider.
Today I decided to ride with the local mountain bike club Dorset Rough Riders, it was only a easy ride but I did this for two reason, first I wanted to find some new local trails that I had missed and secondly to see how I got on riding in a group (mainly keeping up, see above). Unfortunately thing did not start to well, last night I fitted a set on new disc pads on the Cannondale rear brake and they were a mare to fit, don’t know why as I have fitted them before without a problem. Well this morning as I rode to the meeting point I could not get any speed up. When I arrived at the meeting point I found the back brake was dragging and no amount of adjusting the calliper resolved the issue (it was alright when I went I put the bike way), not only that but I noticed some liquid on the reservoir. The brake was working, a bit sharp but I decided to carry on with the ride. At the end of the day all I can say is, “it was not worth it”. I was having to use double the effort to keep up and just not enjoying the ride (despite going over new routes). I did a paltry 10 miles before leaving the group and heading for home, to be fair they were about to head back to the start point and I would only of had to ride all the way back again to get home (about 6 miles from where I left). So now I have to get the brake sorted out on the bike which is going to cost, so all in all I am not a happy bunny………..