Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Bats Are Gross

First things first - some maintenance. Before setting off for an evening ride I had to address the squawking brake rotor on the rear of my bike. I pulled off the wheel and checked the pads. They looked fine. Definitely not worn out. Next, I resurfaced the rotor. Never done this on a bike, but have on a car. Its the same thing. I just took a Scotchbrite pad, dipped it in alcohol (rubbing of course, don't waste the good stuff). Scrub away in a pattern that's not in line with the path of the pads on the rotor. Um, I just kinda followed the "spokes" of the rotor for direction from inside to outside.

I did both sides of the rotor. It's perfect when whenever you tilt the rotor you can see very fine scratches in one direction - but when you tilt in another direction you scratches in another direction. Kinda like those Cracker Jack prizes that have a moving picture...

Next I recentered the caliper after I put the wheel back on. I loosened the mounting bolts squeezed the brake lever then held as I tightened up the bolts. Here a little trick. When you squeeze the brake lever with the bolts loose, notice which side of the caliper moves the most. Tighten that bolt first.

It worked. No more squawking! I took the time to give the front caliper the same treatment... I'm in braking bliss right now!

Time to go for a ride...

I boogied down to Buffalo Bayou park. On my commute to work, I've noticed this sign for the Waugh Bridge Bat Colony. I went to check it out on the bike, rather than catching a glimpse in the truck. Well, it's not so great. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but its nothing more than a bunch of bats that live (and poop) under the bridge over the bayou. The entire underside of the bridge is covered in bat poop. Yech. I didn't know bat poop stinks. The whole "colony" area stinks. I hurriedly rode under the bridge holding my breath as much as possible. It was kinda cool hearing the bats, but I won't be back...

Other than the bat poop, I love this part of town. It's home to Houston's best (though short) disc golf course. It's the only one with any elevation change! I wonder if I can get a disc in my Camelback?

This wonderful greenspace in the center of town is a real nice feature of this city. A city that doesn't get much credit for it's beauty. OK, it's not Austin, but the smack center of Houston is a lot prettier than Katy. I took some photos of the greenery in the shadows of the skyline to illustrate.

Always in the shadow of downtown, but not feeling the concrete jungle blues!

I rode almost to downtown. And had to giggle with my riding partner about the painted sidewalk near the Art Park...

It was a good ride today, almost 17 miles of mixed pace. It's sometimes hard to maintain pace on the trails, as they are mixed use with lots of pedestrians. Sometimes you have to time things to go around the joggers.

The bike needs cleaning, and that will happen tomorrow. Also, tomorrow the stability ball workout looms... ooohhh this is gonna be good!