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Old 04-21-04, 01:42 PM   #1
slvoid
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Friend's gonna die on that bike of his...

I got a friend that I haven't talked to in a few months and never bothered to really check out the bike he uses to commute with. Well I met up with him yesterday cause our bikes were parked next to each other's.

He's riding this 20 year old panasonic road bike with down tube shifters.
He's got a bent derailler and large chainring that causes a lot of rubbing so it can't shift properly.
The brake lever assembly's not completely attached to the handle bar, it's just swinging around.
One of his pedals broke off.
His front brake needs to be pulled all the way in to work.
His rear brake's so out of alignment that if he squeezes it, it rubs the spokes.
Both brake calipers are loose, I can grab it and swing the entire assembly back and forth.
Both wheels are out of true by about 5mm on each side, it seriously wobbles.
The hub where the bearings are looks like an oval, which just adds more wobbling.
The rim is chromed steel.
There's very little tape left on the handle bars which makes me think it gets seriously slippery.

I had 15 minutes during my lunch break yesterday which I used to true out his rear wheel a little and put his brake pad back where it belonged as well as adjusted the brake travel for him. I seriously gotta have a talk with him.
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Old 04-21-04, 02:42 PM   #2
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One triumph of recycling is that scrap metal has been recycled and re-used in this country, very quiety, for decades. Being part of that process would be a noble disposition for this bicycle.

Seriously, he should fish the change out of his couch cushions and go to his town's next police auction. I've picked up bikes there in 100x better shape for $5.00.
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Old 04-21-04, 02:48 PM   #3
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Sounds more like he just needs to work on the components.. the way it is now, it is no beater - a beater is something you beat the crap out of and continues to work well and relatively safely and you can trust enough to get you there... that thing sounds like an accident waiting to happen - I wouldn't trust it at all.
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Old 04-21-04, 04:08 PM   #4
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An accident waiting to happen!
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Old 04-21-04, 09:29 PM   #5
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An accident waiting to happen!
Accidents don't wait to happen -- nor do they happen to people who have faulty equipment and fail to fix it up. If he crashes on that bike, it will be no accident, it will be his own fault.

Seriously, I think you need to have a word to him about it. I wouldn't even consider riding something with that many problems (and I've ridden on some crap in my time).
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Old 04-21-04, 09:42 PM   #6
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I tried talking to him once about not wearing a helmet, he's pretty stubborn. And this was before I found out about all the problems with his bike. What's even worse is we live in NYC, with all the stop and go traffic. I know he'll refuse to take it to a shop to get it fixed up so I'll have to find a weekend to get together and fix the damn thing up for him.
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Old 04-21-04, 09:44 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slvoid
I tried talking to him once about not wearing a helmet, he's pretty stubborn. And this was before I found out about all the problems with his bike. What's even worse is we live in NYC, with all the stop and go traffic. I know he'll refuse to take it to a shop to get it fixed up so I'll have to find a weekend to get together and fix the damn thing up for him.
On the basis of his apparent attitude, do you think it's worth it?
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Old 04-21-04, 10:14 PM   #8
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Well he's a good friend of mine, known him for a long time, he's the only person from my high school freshmen year that I still talk to. It's probably not worth my time to fix it up, probably much cheaper just to get him a used bike as anything would be in better condition than his.
He's not stupid or anything, he's pretty smart and a great programmer, I just think sometimes he doesn't know any better. It's also more of an ignorance/pride issue I know he won't accept it if I bought him a used bike.
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Old 04-22-04, 11:34 AM   #9
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Although I do hack some code, I would never claim myself to be a great programmer but from what I know of great programmers... I think this statement...

Quote:
Originally Posted by slvoid
He's not stupid or anything, he's pretty smart and a great programmer

Fully supports this statement...

Quote:
Originally Posted by slvoid
, I just think sometimes he doesn't know any better. It's also more of an ignorance/pride issue I know he won't accept it if I bought him a used bike.




You know... some of my best code was produced after I accidently deleted my original copy and had to rewrite everything. there's a lesson to be learned from that. Sometimes hanging on to the old blinds you to what real quality is.
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Old 04-22-04, 05:24 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slvoid
I tried talking to him once about not wearing a helmet, he's pretty stubborn. And this was before I found out about all the problems with his bike. What's even worse is we live in NYC, with all the stop and go traffic. I know he'll refuse to take it to a shop to get it fixed up so I'll have to find a weekend to get together and fix the damn thing up for him.
Take him for a ride down a fast hill. It'll be even better if there's lots of turns on it. After that you can talk to him about the safety merits of properly adjusted equipment and he'll probably listen, if he survives.
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Old 04-22-04, 05:33 PM   #11
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Just take the bike and taco a rim on "accident", tell him it would cost more to fix the bike than to get a new one.
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Old 04-22-04, 08:25 PM   #12
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Man, I could turn that thing into a fixed gear in no time...
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Old 04-22-04, 08:38 PM   #13
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He can't shift.. so it IS a fixed gear

I'm working out a plan on how to screw up his bike bad enough that he won't try to ride it and I'll get him a used bike in such a way that he won't know I'm doing it on purpose...
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Old 04-22-04, 08:41 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slvoid
He can't shift.. so it IS a fixed gear
Is it really a fixed gear though... he can't coast? Or are you also saying that his freewheel is locked up as well?
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Old 04-22-04, 08:50 PM   #15
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Well half and half. It's mostly a single speed. The warped free wheel housing at the hub that looks like an oval also rubs a lot. Mine spins about 3x longer than his.

I just remembered another thing too, no reflectors anywhere, he doesn't use any lights whatsoever and he rides at night sometimes. I know people here would brand him suicidal but I know this guy and like I said, he's not stupid in the sense that he's a ****** but I guess he just doesn't know any better and he's part of the type who doesn't wear helmets on the belief "it hasn't happened to me yet."

Ironically he wouldn't ride to certain places because he only had a cable lock so I bought him a u-lock for a birthday present so he can get around to more places in the city and at the time I didn't know how thoroughly messed up his bike is.
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Old 04-23-04, 10:17 AM   #16
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You know, I have a friend that works for the local power utility. During the aftermath of big storms, he gets drafted to tape off and mind downed power lines. From time to time there will happen along some idiot that wants to barge through the safety tape because they find it inconvienient. My friend really has no authority to physically restrain them, but he says when he tells them, "OK you can pass through the tape, but first I need to ask you who your next of kin is. Really, I need it for the paperwork." Most will reconsider at that point.

Perhaps you should take out a small accidental death policy on your friend, explain why as you fill out the forms with him. Maybe he'll get the hint.

Dan

PS: If it were me, I would just steal his bike then fix it. You can return it later.
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