Friday, January 11, 2008

One more for the scrap heap...

Schwinn Suburban

I knew it would happen sooner or later – the derailleur cable on my Schwinn Suburban would break. Normally, that wouldn't be a big deal. You visit the bike shop, buy a new one for a couple bucks and you're good to go. But with the Suburban, there's a catch – it has something called a "Positron" shifting cable that, from what I can tell, was only manufactured for a short time in the late 1970s. It has little springs and mysterious parts at each end.

That means that this bike is stuck in one gear. Sure, there's probably some nutjob in North Dakota who collects Positron cables and sells them on eBay, but is it really worth it? I think not. Time to move on.

Move on to what? Well, I'm rather embarrased to admit it, but I have another Suburban to replace the one that just died.

bike at Mad River Bluffs

Here it is today at the Mad River Bluffs property. It has a modern derailleur and is built like a Mack Truck. Why ride this bike rather than one of my nicer, lighter ones? Simple reason: It has a chain guard that keeps the grease off my pants when I get around town and visit clients.

3 Comments:

Blogger capdiamont said...

Why not replace the dérailleur also? How did the one get the modern dérailleur?

8:58 PM  
Blogger Jack said...

I suppose if I come across an old bike with an regular, "modern" derailleur, then I could scrounge it and replace this one. However, that bike would have to be a lesser bike than the Suburban. Otherwise, why ruin one bike to fix up this old beast?


In the short term, that's a hard thing to find. In the long run, anything is possible. I just don't want to invest any money in an old bike like this.

The other Suburban got derailleur because, for some reason, I had one stored in a box of parts. Sometimes it pays to be a pack rat.

9:24 PM  
Blogger Anon.R.mous said...

If I can find parts for my bike on eBay, you can too. Another place to look is that library bike place here in Arcata, they have lots of good parts that seem to get tossed.

12:23 PM  

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