Thursday, January 22, 2015

Sylvia is in the shop

Sylvia is in the shop getting her new wheels installed. For Christmas my wonderful husband ordered me wheels that have everything. Hub dynamo, roller brakes, and an 8 speed hub. They arrived yesterday and I was super excited.
I've been spinning out in the third gear for a while now and the higher gears will make me faster and more comfortable. The roller brakes will mean I can stop in less than 15 feet so they're important too. But I want more gears. Please?
After the fun day of destruction I'd had I was ready for something good. I had broken 2 needles on my sewing machine, a 1950 Singer 66 treadle. I then broke the new electric Heavy Duty Singer (it now won't stitch and makes a lovely ratcheting sound) we have trying to sew more bedding for Rory. Now I have to hand sew it and I want a better thimble!
Opening the giant box that came all the way from Germany it was Christmas again! The solid feel of the wheels as I took them out, the shine of the new hubs, it was a truly beautiful moment. I flipped Sylvia upside down and gently flattened and removed her back wheel. I was so excited!
One of my favorite days.
When we tried to put the back wheel on it wouldn't fit; it was about 1/2" to wide for her drop outs. I almost cried, I even stomped my feet a bit. This was just the type of day I'd been having. It was tempting to just grab a 2x4 and spread her myself, but cooler heads prevailed and we took her to Ajo Bikes. After all, this was a job for the professionals!
Once there they warned me that it could damage her to be widened so much and maybe I should just  get a new bike. I don't want a new bike, I want to keep messing with poor Sylvia until she's perfect. Besides, after all the changes we've already made she's really close to being the most perfect and practical bike for me. After getting these better wheels installed the only thing left is better tires, and I already know which ones I want.
They were impressed with the wheels we brought in and the fact that we had all the pieces ready to go. I told them to do it they could and they gave me the number of an excellent welder in case something goes wrong. That made me sweat, but we left her there anyway.
I really hope she comes through ok, it's only 7mm on each side so everything I can find says it will be fine as long as the welds are solid and they reinforce them before they start. My husband keeps telling me that they know what they are doing, so I'm trying not to worry. They will call me when she's done, probably on Monday.
Meanwhile I'm essentially vehicle less until I get her back. I didn't drive my car while working at PetSmart and the battery is dead. At least I still have my feet!

Seen while out with my husband. 


  1. Ooh, tense moments - Sylvia under the knife! I hope it all works out.

    1. I am very tense, but also hopeful. It took forever to find her and this will make her so much more useful. I just have to think happy thoughts.