Saturday, February 2, 2008


Today was pretty much a bomb-ass day. I loaded up on coffee while reading "Paris-Roubaix" then dropped off a wagon load of stuff at the recycling center. As it was the sunniest day we've had in a few weeks in addition to 40 degree temps I decided it would be a stellar day to wash the fleet.
I started off washing my car that I've neglected in the 20 degree weather we've been having, then addressed my non-functional windshield wiper nozzles. Job done I switched over to bikes. My 'cross bike's chain was pretty mankey since it's fairly new and still had that nuclear grease they pack 'em in, as was the case on the mountain bike. Ugh. I had to bust out the nasty degreaser that removes skin to get them close to clean. Naturally it was a last resort after having read how to clean a chain from BKW. That procedure works, except on nasty grease.
With a few years taken from my life, I pressed on. Cleaning my road bike is always a pleasure, not only because it is generally barely dirty, but when clean it shines all sweet-like. Add in some bright sun and it's a recipe for pictures!

I like the feel of the bend of the bars in my hands but I think I need to try a deep traditional bend to get the drops a least somewhat level. Unfortunately, the hoods are as high as they can go on these bars... and daddy likes 'em high. At least everything else is dialed in terms of components. Looks pretty sweet if you ask me.
I also washed pretty much every wheel in my garage so the rims aren't covered in brake schmag and cassettes are shiny (and thus will last forever) and match the accompanying chains.
On to the domesticity front, I ended up cleaning my garage from all the leaves that blow in daily. As I was doing this I remembered that I wanted to flush out my water heater tank as it seems to have lost some of it's hot water capacity. After opening the drain and nothing but a few drops coming out, it pretty much confirmed that I had a nice layer of insulating calcium deposits at the bottom of the tank blocking the drain. I launched into a 2 hr effort to get as much as I could of that crap out. I managed to only splash my face twice and crotch once. There are three aspects of this that are bad: 1)all splashes were loaded with aforementioned calcium chunks 2)the water was still rather hot 3)my recently washed car was directly behind me and despite my best efforts, I could not block all the water from getting on the hood. Sweet.
to top it all off, when I went to reassemble the valve, it leaked. A few failed attempts to clean up the sealing surface and I was off to Lowe's to buy a new valve. New valve installed, I called it quits for the day and got my freshly washed bike set up to do a workout on the trainer.
I'm pretty much wiped out now so I'm calling it a day.


the ATM

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