May 1, 2008 by welshcyclist
Last time I cycled was Sunday, it’s now Thursday, not a happy so and so. Cycling home from work Sunday evening I had my second puncture in 3 days, it was the rear tyre, so to save time I rang my eldest son, Keiron, to come and rescue me. This, in itself, was a difficult process, as my car with the bike rack on, Keiron doesn’t have one on his, was in Aberdulais, I was at Briton Ferry, and Keiron was at home in Glynneath. So Keiron had to drive to Briton Ferry, pick me up, while I left my bike locked to a pub sign, for security, drive me to Aberdulais, for me to pick up my car, he then drove on home, while I drove back to Briton Ferry, to pick up my bike.
Well it all went to plan, and I was able to pick up my Subway 8 , safe and sound, and transport it home. I’ve said many times, in this blog, I’m no bike mechanic, even mending a puncture, is a major exercise for me. The previous puncture, Conor, my other son, helped me to fix, he made it look so easy, but that was the front wheel.This time, because it was the back wheel I decided to take it to Halfords, for them to repair. The gears were still not “right” anyway, I’d taken the bike back 4 times, for that problem already.
Sadly, I couldn’t get there till yesterday, the lads at Halfords said they’d fix the flat and check the gears, I went for a cup of coffee, they said to come back in half an hour. When I came back they said there was a problem with the gearing, and would take the internal hub apart, and sort it out. I told them I hadn’t a problem with the gears until they’d serviced the bike, they said they’d ring me when it was ready.
At about 4.00pm., that same afternoon they rang to say it was ready, and they’d replaced the whole back wheel, which included a completely new Nexus 8 hub, free because the bike was less than 12 months old, and no charge for labour. All I had to pay for was a new inner tube, two tyre liners, which I’d asked for, to provide even more puncture resistance. To think, I had been thinking, my puncture problems were over, after approx 3 months without one, I’m seriously thinking of sending away for those solid rubber inner tubes, I read about last year. Punctures are my major turn-off when I’m cycling, something I dread.
The amount of glass on the cyclepaths is no joke, it seems to be done out of pure spite, just the type of society we now find ourselves living in, I suppose. I’m afraid that, to avoid the glass, I’ll have to ride on the road, where any glass is soon cleared by the traffic. Anyway, if I get a puncture any time soon, I’ll be sporting solid tyres, as soon as I can.
Been off all week, took 3 nighshifts off, had a phonecall today, asking me to work tomorrow night (Friday), so I’ll get to commute in and back, even toying with the idea of cycling the whole trip, i.e., the whole 18 miles each way. We’ll see what the weather’s to be like, but my route will be, on road down the valley, to Ynysarwed, then pick up the canal towpath, via the new aquaduct through Tonna, Neath, Giant’s Grave, Briton Ferry, then follow the old A48 road to Port Talbot, thus avoiding the National route 4 cycleway, and all that broken glass, well fingers crossed.