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Monday Funday, 6,000 Miles for 2020, and Fixing A Friend’s 5200

September 2020
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We rolled out on the tandem yesterday morning with a goal of 50 miles, though I’d have been happy with anything better than 46. I was sitting on 5,955 outdoor miles for the year with a goal of 6,000 (yep, I’m a touch ahead).

We were dead unto a headwind and we had a long way to go before we could sniff a tailwind. Thankfully, it was Monday Funday so we just put our heads down and got to it. Eight miles later we made our first turn to get out of the headwind. The right turn north was like having brakes that had been dragging suddenly let loose. Sadly, that reprieve was short-lived as it was back to the grindstone just a couple of short miles later. We were 18 miles in before we were done, for the most part, with headwind.

Compared to the headwind, the rest of the ride was gravy. We handled the crosswind and the tailwind sections were simply fun. I knew we were going to be over my desired 46 miles with about ten to go so I relaxed considerably knowing I wouldn’t have to take the single bike out. That 70 the day before was wearing on me.

We pulled into the driveway with a little better than 47 miles – 6,002 outdoor miles on the year. I’m a little less than three months ahead of schedule.

Now, interestingly, my buddy Mike’s 5200 has been out of commission for months – almost all of this season. His shifting is pooched and the shop was suggesting a new drivetrain. The shop wasn’t wrong, but he’s got the 9-speed triple drivetrain Dura-Ace (I know, they made a triple in Dura-Ace? Yes they did), and I had the Ultegra triple 9-speed before swapping my drivetrain for 10-speed 105… We made plans for him to bring his bike over after he cleaned up and had some lunch to move some parts around to see if we couldn’t fix his bike (I’d been pushing for this to happen for months, but Mike is a bit stubborn).

About halfway through my lunch, here comes Mike – no bike. He wanted to take the parts to the shop to see if they could make it work. I wanted the shot, though, so I asked him to go get his bike and told him I could have it up and running in a half-hour. He’d picked up a left Dura-Ace shifter online so he brought that with him – and it’s a good thing. His original triple shifter was done.

I set about stripping the left side of his handlebar, pulled off the old shifter, set up his Flight Deck receiver on the new shifter, put everything together, ran new brake and shifter cables, and…. Nothing. It was still binding trying to shift from the middle to the big ring. His ramps were too chewed up from grinding the chain into them with the busted shifter – so I put my old 52-tooth Ultegra onto his crank, lowered the front derailleur about a quarter of an inch (a lot) and put everything back together.

And it shifted like a dream. It took a full hour, though. Maybe an hour-and-a-half. Still, it was pretty cool to see his jaw drop when I hit that barrel adjuster and the chain flew up and down the three rings just like it did two years ago and for the previous 130,000 miles he’d put on the bike since he brought it home.

I took a nap after that, then tended to the last bit of grass I had to cut. I grilled burgers for dinner, then relaxed for the rest of the evening.

It was one fantastic cap to a great weekend.

Definition: Jenkinson’d:

To have a friend push you to give you a boost up a hill. Mike was Jenkinson’d.

Yes, it works. And the smile on Mike’s face when he gets that boost is priceless.


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