bike 101: beware of loose and dangly things
This picture was taken last week. Shortly thereafter, that beautiful teal pashmina around my neck went from my bike basket – where I thought I had it securely stowed – to the clutches of my bike chain. I would have thought myself above such rookie mistakes, but since I wasn’t, here is my tip to you: beware of putting loose and dangly things into your bike basket because they could potentially wind up tightly coiled around your bike chain.
The problem was that I hit some bumps and, before I knew it, my pashmina bounced out a few inches each time and got sucked into the chain despite the chain guard over it. Fortunately, I was riding slowly enough that I didn’t come to too abrupt of a stop. There was no chance of falling, I just slowed to a halt. And this is what I saw…
Another cyclist was kind enough to stop and help me out; while he slowly pushed my bike backward, I pulled and unwound the the scarf from the chain. It took a while, but eventually, very slowly and carefully, I got the entire scarf out. Thank you, kind cyclist, who stopped and helped!
Sadly, this mistake cost me some ramifications. (And I don’t just mean the ruining of my pashmina). The second gear, in which I was at the time of this incident, is no longer working. And I’ve been told that old three-speed hubs are very difficult to fix so I’m not sure how this problem will get resolved. For now, I’ve been riding in either the first or the third gear.
Let my foolishness be a lesson to you: if you ride with anything long and loose in your basket, make sure to either secure it within a bag, use a bungee or something of the likes to secure it in place, or use a basket cover to keep it from bouncing out. But I’m sure you already knew that. As for me, it seems that I’m still learning the basics here.