Winter is the perfect time of the year to bring that full suspension bike in for it’s annual bearing overhaul/servicing or at the very least an inspection to make sure that those linkages are running smoothly. On a typical service it’s very rare that every bearing is bad or seized but it is noticeable when one or a few have gone bad. Not detectable through the slow degradation of the bearing but VERY noticeable once replaced. So if you’re one of those guys or gals that hasn’t had your suspension checked at all for the last couple of years then there is a good possibility that one or more bearings need replacement. Plus it’s winter and i need something to do.
This past weekend was quite interesting and also a darn good time. Friday after work Brian and i headed toward Dillon MT (with our mtbs) to volunteer our services as mechanics for the annual RATPOD road ride which is a 140 mile, single day ride around the Pioneer Mountains and actually up and over them. On our way over to Dillon we stopped at the May Creek trail for a short mtb ride along a nice slice of smooth and mellow singletrack. It was a nice cool evening for a ride until you stopped long enough for the mosquitos to settle in. Damn Mosquitos !! So with pests at hand we quickly loaded the Toyota back up and headed toward the big hole valley…..and of course you can’t stop through Wisdom MT without stopping at Fetty’s for dinner (and a beer), and finally further down the road we ended up at Jackson Hotsprings to soak (and drink another beer) and to spend the night in one of their more affordable rooms which also happens to be a singlewide trailer parked out (far) back in grass that was 2ft in height. The cheap bed seemed just about right for a weary head.
The following sunday afternoon, Brian and i rewarded ourselves with a mtb ride in the Pioneer Mountains and on a trail that neither of us had been on (you know….since we were in the area we kinda felt entitled). And it was purdy darn good too !
1978 Schwinn Twinn with 5spd rear and atom drum brake, in for a full overhaul and clean/detail….(Navy Jelly is the cats meow for removing rust from chrome, just don’t get this crap on your hands as it’ll remove’em….yeah…your hands). This bike must have spent a little time in outdoor storage as there seems to be a little bit of rust here and there and the bearings were all in pretty rough shape. A thorough cleaning and re-greasing of the bearings brought them all back to life and none actually needed replacement. We also had to replace all of the cable/housing as they were corroded badly (to be expected for 30yr old cables). Pretty cool to see how tough these old bikes were.
Don’t trash those old cups !!! Send us your old external bottom bracket cups and we’ll replace the bearings with Phil Wood’s 6805X bearings…..Bearings with an “X” have the same seals as those specified for submersible motor/pump bearings, so you know the bearings are filled with MUCH higher grade grease and the seals are also waaaaay better than the OEM crud.
Raceface oem bearing on the left. Phil Wood replacement to the right.