Monday, May 31, 2010

Chain Gang

Due to some persistent noise and shifting issues, I realized that Blue Belle's chain needed to be replaced. At first I was just going to stop by the nearest bike shop and get a new one. However, the Beau informed me that I should get a "5 speed chain". Apparently, as rear cassettes have evolved to have 8, 10, or even more gears (on derailleur equipped bicycles), chains have gotten narrower and narrower to make them fit precisely onto these skinny little gears in a narrow space. Who knew?

I was directed to No Brakes, a bicycle shop catering to the fixed-gear crowd, as the most likely place to find a 5-speed chain. Sure enough, they had a "5/6" chain, as in sized for a five or six gear bicycle. I'm told it is a very nice chain to boot. It's called a Z-Chain. The Beau helped me put it on, and things are running smoothly again!

I had fun visiting the No Brakes store, too. This is not like your typical store, which tries to have a little something for everyone - mountain biking, racing, commuting, etc. No Brakes really focuses on quality parts and accessories for the urban, steel-framed, fixed-gear bicycle. Now, I love my gears. But I have a lot of bicycle needs in common with their clientele - I may be going back soon for cloth handlebar tape. They also had some really pretty, unique frames and built-up bicycles for sale. Oh, and they moved, so they are now the closest bike shop to downtown, at least by a few minutes...
(Disclaimer - I did not receive any reward or pay to promote the No Brakes shop.)

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