October 24, 2011 by welshcyclist
Went back to work yesterday(Sunday), for a dayshift. It felt like going back to school after half term, all those years ago, when I was a boy. I’ve been off for a fortnight, using up my annual leave, and to be fair had an enjoyable time. Her indoors and I had a couple of days out, and a few evenings. The rest of the time was spent doing some decorating, which I enjoyed, not like me at all.
The only thing missing was getting out on the bike. I admit I got a little lazy, dark mornings( my favourite time for a ride is early morning ), and rain kept me in bed. Then when I did manage to get out there and pedal, a few problems with the Pioneer, raised their ugly heads. Of course, as described, in earlier posts, I intervened with my, very poor, mechanical skill to make things far worse.
By Wednesday, last week, I’d had enough. I decided to get the gears sorted, and my best option was to take out a Bikecare plan at Halfords, and have them do it. I delivered it to the Neath Branch, where the young lads, assessed the bike, but didn’t seem to know alot, and duely signed me up for a three year deal at £39.99. This provides free mechanical work on the bike, and I only have to pay for the parts used.
So Iasked them to replace the gear and brake cables, and hoped for the best. I’ve had major problems with Halfords Bikecare plans in the past, but I can’t afford to have my commuter bike serviced/repaired in other local bike shops. They said I could pick it up next day Thursday, which then ran into Friday, which again didn’t give me alot of confidence.
When I collected the Pioneer on the Friday, I was pleasantly surprised, because after a ride around the car park, the gears were working a dream! I didn’t get to ride it properly, until my commute into work yesterday. And yes, the gears and brakes worked fine, the ride was faster for the good work Halfords mechanic had done. Halford have obviously come a long way, since my early cycling days, fingers crosse then, my £39.99 is a good investment for the next 3 years. The cables cost me £13.35.
It was all not without problems. The bike “felt” wrong on my commute, I soon discovered the saddle height had been lowered, presumably by the mechanic while he was indexing the gears, probably test rode the bike, after putting the new cable in place. Anyway, it only took a five minute stop to readjust the height, and I was on my way again.
Overall, therefore I’m very pleased, and my bike is going well, in fact the ride was the best part of my return to work, despite the fact that the complete journey was in darkness. 12 hours later, my ride home was great, but by the time I’d got to Resolven I had to turn my bike lights on. Next Sunday they will need to be on all the way in and all the way back.
Here comes winter!!