Monday, March 10, 2008

New Treads

This past weekend I picked up a new tire and tube from the Wrench. I really like the WTB Weirwolf 2.55s that came stock, however with race season approaching, I was looking for less rolling resistance and rotating mass for my rear wheel. The Weirwolf is one of the fattest, highest volume 29er tires available, but is a bit of overkill for the relatively smooth singletrack we ride around here. Nate and Eric suggested the WTB Nanoraptor 2.1, their tire of choice for our local terrain. I did decide to keep the big meat on the front wheel as a bit of suspension while I am adjusting to riding a rigid fork.

Nano on left; Weirwolf on right

I have been lucky enough to have never flatted during a ride, and thus have never actually had the pleasure of changing a tire. Furthermore, I have never removed and reinstalled a rear wheel. I was able to pry the old tire from the rim with no problem, but I had a bit of trouble getting the new tire's bead to seat in the rim. I did some reading on the web and got that fixed pretty quickly. The real problems arose when I was attempting to reinstall the rear wheel. Trying to finagle the derailleur, align the rotor with the brake, and seat the wheel in the dropout made me wish I had another set of hands.

My impromptu work stand.

I finally managed to get it done (with help from the wife) with only minor injuries to my paint due to the rotor being wedged someplace it didn't belong. You can see the gouge I made on the inside of my chainstay in the picture above. Overall, it was a good experience, but something I need to practice if I am going to ever be able to do this during a race. Probably not going to have an extra set of hands available when I am out in the Wyoming wilderness. Any tips for future attempts?

Ready to roll. Looks pretty fast to me.


crewcabrob said...

Hey Justin,

It helps if the bike is in a stand for any maint.

If no stand, turn the bike over and it reall helps. Also, shift to the smallest cog on the back. That gets the derailure out of the way a bit. It also gives you a reference to put the chain back on.

Side note here: are you wanting to carpool up to the Norfolk race? I have one open spot on my rack for the trip up. One guy bailed on me. :(


millhouse said...

Thanks for the tips and thanks for the offered ride. I have a wedding to attend that afternoon so I should probably drive myself so that I can make a quick getaway.