Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Movin' along

Got another piece finished for the Ben-meya rear derailleur. Had to go back and respray the front plate, paint wasn't sticking. This time I used an acid etch primer and it worked great. Pieces still need a final polish to remove the small scratches on the mirror and to blend the paint lines a little better but I'll wait a couple days for the pieces to fully cure before I do that.
Stuck a screw in there to test the fit, screws I have on order are alloy and gold in colour :-)


So far so good.

Some colour

Got the front link plate all masked off and sprayed with 4 coats of chrome gold paint and 2 coats of clear. Might have to go back and try again with primer if it doesn't cure properly in the next couple days. Needs a final polish to blend the paint lines in better but overall I think it came out great. Now I can do the rest of the peices.
Got the mirror finish I was looking for too. Just buffed up really nicely with a rotary felt pad and some Turtle Wax. All that sanding prep really paid off!

Masked and ready for paint

Finished product

View from behind

Finished vs rough machined

Forget Yumeya, this is Ben-meya.
Ben-meya out xoxo

Monday, July 26, 2010

I'd tap that

Ohhh baby we're getting down to the nitty gritty. Got home from work and just went straight to the workshop without even realising it. Made some good progress on the derailleur front. Did some experimenting with the Deore to figure out what size bolts I am going to need and what thread size/pitch. Settled with M4 x 0.7 which required pretty much the least amount of work and highest likely hood of success with the finished product. It is also a fairly standard sizing so I was able to source exactly the bolts that I was looking for.

One side gets tapped, the other enlarged

It's a pretty easy setup. The old steel pin was pushed into place and sat in a bushing which would allow the derailleur to pivot. I bored out the bushing sleeve so that it would fit snugly with the M4 bolt.

Using an old screw I had laying around I mocked it up to try the fit. Works perfect, you can also adjust the preload on the bushing by simply tightening or loosening the screw. Finished product will be purdier of course.
I was feeling ambitious so I moved on to drilling out the rest of the XTR Shadow pins. I also bored out and tapped the holes where the new bolts will be going in place of the pins (bored out one side, tapped the other).
This would be what you'd call a completely disassembled XTR rear derailleur.
Was feeling reeeeeaaally ambitious and polished up (wet sanded) one of the pieces and got it ready for paint prep. Progressively polished up to 2000 grit sandpaper in the areas where there will not be paint and left it at a 600 grit for the areas that are getting painted.
I also ordered the bolts that I am going to need to put it all back together. Found them on one of my new favourite websites, http://www.tastynuts.com/ Don't ask how I found that site. They are coming from the UK however so I suspect it will be a couple weeks for them to arrive. Pretty much how long it will take me to get the derailleur ready to be re-assembled. Then there are other parts to address like retro-fitting the SAINT short cage, new pulley wheels, Ti body and cage springs, carbon hanger plate, aluminum hanger bolts................ better start making some orders soon!

Now it's time for bed.


Ben D

Friday, July 23, 2010

You have got to love a Canadian Tire sale

Thought I might as well treat myself to a new toy being that it is my day off and all. I have been waiting for one of these to come on sale for a couple months now so it seemed like fate when I checked out the e-flyer and spotted it.
Snuck out this morning before lawn cutting and bicycle riding and picked up a table top drill press. Now she is by no means top-o-the line but it is more than adequate for the small tasks that I have in mind. Also conveniently HSS drill bits were on sale, surely a sign. I have already put them to good use, drilling into my practice Deore rear derailleur to figure out how I am going to go about pushing the pins out of my future X-Ben XTR Shadow derailleur project.
The drill press made very short work of this task and I am confident that I can shortly move on to the XTR.

The new kid

Great success!!


Looking forward to moving this project along!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

It's the little things

See, now there is very little in this world that gives me greater pleasure than tweaking my already amazing mountain bike. To my surprise over the past month I have started getting bushing knock in my rear shock at the top bolt mounting point. Now I know this is a somewhat common ailment of dual suspension bikes but I was still surprised seeing as this is my first Fox rear shock that has developed busing play since I started riding them in 2007. I am now on my 4th bike with a Fox rear shock since then so I was actually not expecting it to fail.
However it was a good excuse try out a fun new-er-ish product on the market from the folks at Real World Cycling. They are based out of Arizona I think and appear to have some sort of partnership with Enduro Bearings. They make a nice little kit that replaces your shock bushing(s) with needle bearings.
I installed them right when I got off work this afternoon since I wanted to go riding but the bushing knock was DriViNg mE CraZy!!!! Not that I could actually detect it while riding but I knew it was there. Only took about 10minutes and the new bearings pushed in really easy and it mounted up to the Giant without the need for any spacers or reducers which was nice. As soon as I tightened the bolts back up the play was gone! Zero! no more knocking. Now I've heard that these develop a bit of play over time but it is normal (since you don't want bearings to be super tight) and it levels off and doesn't get any worse. Well after a 2 hour ride there is still zero play but I'll have to ride them for a while before I can decide on a verdict. The way I see it, if they last a full 12 months then they are worth buying. They were around $25 too which is amazing. I swear the suspension now operates a bit smoother but who knows. Certainly got rid of the klunk so I am expecting good things.
I also decided to try out their fork seals since OE seals leave a lot to be desired. They have built their reputation off of the fork seals which are also only around $25 so I thought there's no harm in trying (unless they destroy my $1300 fork, but such is life). They also installed very easily which took about 10minutes. I installed them after my ride so I will post back about them in a couple days once I get some miles on them. I hear they have a short-ish break in period.

The goods :-)
Needle bearings to replace your shock bushings
Fork seals
Fork seals installed
Needle bearings installed

It is only possible to replace the top shock bushing with bearings since there is quite a bit of proprietary hardware used in the lower mount. Lower mount is pretty much impervious to wear anyway so it's not necessary to replace.
Only beef is that the blue fork seals look ugly on my bike. I wish they came in black (or orange ;-D ) Enduro, please give us a choice of colours! Yes I am high maintenance.
I'll do a write up on these products once I get some mileage on them.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Lifestyles of the rich and the famous

Was away most of last week, did you miss me? I was summoned out to Canmore Alberta for National XC Championships. Though I was not racing, oh no, I am far to slow to make that expensive of a trip for a mid pack finish. I was asked to be the mechanic for 3-Rox Racing, a team containing some of the fastest folks in Ontario and also Canada. Had a great time out there and the team did great. Derek (my boy) finished 3rd in the Elite Men's race behind Kabush and Plaxton. Amanda Sin was 2nd behind Pendrel.
My pro-elite mechanic skillz ensured there were no mechanicals and I got an awesome sunglasses tan hanging out in the tech zone all day. Was a perfect day for racing with amazing 360 degree mountain views.
Kyle Douglas and I did a full video lap of the course which can be seen in 3 segments here

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Kyle was destroying me on the climbs (if you listen close in the last 15 seconds you can hear me say something to that effect). The one rider that blew by us was Daniel Sessford on a hot lap so I don't feel so bad for getting smoked.
That is about all for now. Back to work at Hardwood and enjoying the hot weather.

View from the motel

Kyle and I head out on a mountain ride after filming a lap of the course

Catching a mountain goat for dinner.