BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

On a bike, riding somewhere. Every day, rain or shine.

Posts tagged ‘replacement’

#365daysofbiking Don’t stop me now

March 4th – The front brake was feeling funny again, it had some initial resistance – like a click – when applied. I’d had it before but couldn’t recall the cause.

Turned out I discovered it riding to work when I lost braking power on the same brake. The pads were so worn, the return leaf spring was being pushed out of place by the disc surface.causing the click.

The pistons were opened back out with a wedge tool for the purpose and new pads dropped in. Braking harmony restored!

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#365daysofbiking Maintaining the bite

November 22nd – And when I got home, an essential job – replace the missing studs in the winter tyres I’s saved from last season.

Schwalbe, the makers of the tyres, sell kits of replacement studs and a tool for inserting them – they are fiddly to do but with a tiny spot of silicone grease they go in well enough.

I had six to do. Took me a while to re-find the knack, but I got there in the end… and hopefully maintaining the excellent grip I love these tires for.

But so worth in the end.

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December 5th – In Telford again, and the work on the footbridge replacement has taken an interesting turn. On the west-side steps, curling around the bridge pillar, a tortuous square spiral ramp is being built in scuffed and wood.

I assume this will be to take the place of the existing ramp, which must be in the way of the new structure, which is to be built closer in towards the station buildings.

That’s quite some ramp and it’ll be fun riding a bike up and down that…

November 14th – I had to go to Telford, and I was keen to see the work on the footbridge replacement is really moving on apace now. 

Sectional fencing is up, footpaths and steps have closed, barriers are up and alternate footways tarmac and ready. 

And the sad realisation that a favourite station flowerbed was set to be lost, with an excavator standing by.

Oh well, that’s progress for you…

January 26th – Over to Telford mid morning to pick something up, and I noted that the 80s footbridge that links Telford Station’s two platforms with the cycleway and town centre is breathing it’s last – but one simple change has made it much nicer already, and it’s quite a shock.

The bridge is due to be replaced for one more user friendly, that’s better for wheelchair users and less circuitous for passengers in a hurry, and will also offer lifts, and construction is just commencing. Trees around the bridge have been removed and the lack of dense cop[pice around the station end has opened it right up, and made the chore of using the thing a whole bunch nicer, with less dark corners.

I’ll be watching the project with interest.

August 3rd – Telford on a quick visit midday, and a surprise: I noted evidence of recent exploratory drilling and a planning application to replace the dingy, 80s footbridge over the railway and adjacent main road with a new structure.

The bridge as it is is corroded and not ideal, but it’s a very large structure and it’ll be interesting to look at the plans for a replacement. 

One of the biggest problems with the structure is it’s greatest asset: being enclosed with a roof makes it an excellent sheltering point in bad weather, but makes it dingy, dystopian and unpleasant at night.

I also wonder what they’ll do with the overgrown vegetation that also make the footways here so grim at night.

The times seem to be changing. Let’s hope for the better.

May 25th -Darnford Bridge Farm is still decaying, slowly, although there does seem to be some activity in the yard now.  This old farm sits in the middle of a short, unnamed, potholed, unadopted cut through between the A51 Tamworth Road and Darnford Lane, just on the eastern side of Lichfield.

There’s been planning permission granted here since 2013 to build a large house and swimming pool, and I think maybe someone is planning to start work here soon. 

I’m not against the plan; the farm is derelict and needs sorting – but the overgrown gateway and white lilac in the hedge will be missed, as will my prurient stops here to nose around when I pass…

Everything must change, I guess.

March 13th – Today, an old friend entered retirement. I replaced my trusty Panasonic Lumix TZ40 for a brand spanking new, just released TZ60. The little red compact camera has been through an awful lot, and survived, and still takes good pictures, but it is probably on the verge of death; it makes ominous grinding sounds when switching on now, and sometimes, the auto lens cover doesn’t open. 

I have had and used the camera for a little over 12 months. Apart from the odd day when I forgot it, it has travelled with me every day in a little sleeve in my pocket. It has taken about 21,000 photos, and doesn’t owe me a penny. This little metal-bodied gem of a camera – boasting 20x optical zoom and great adjustability in a small size – has been dropped, got wet, covered in mud, sweat, tea, and on one occasion, was bled on. It’s operated in frost, snow, howling rain and hot sun. It has been a faithful friend and tool. Almost all the images posted here in the last twelve months here have been taken with it.

Panasonic cameras are a bit Marmite – loved and hated with equal passion. I’ve used them since 2007 and adore them, despite their foibles. With Leica lenses and tank-like build quality, I couldn’t change now. I tried a Sony for a bit in 2011 and loathed it. You get used to stuff.

Several of my cameras have come to sticky ends. Dropped down steps, bounced while riding, stolen. This one seemed to have had a real survival spirit.

The little red camera shows the marks of life, and wear and tear. Ingrained dirt, dents, buckles and chips. They are, although the camera probably disagrees, the marks of love.

The newcomer is the direct model replacement, the TZ60 (oddly, there was no TZ50) – it boasts a higher resolution, 30x optical zoom and more features to fiddle with than I can shake an SD card at. It’s slightly heavier, and larger, but feels good. Just enough features have moved button or changed to drive me mad for a good few weeks. Incredibly, it cost exactly the same as the TZ40 when I bought it. Progress.

I shall pass the red one on to someone who needs it for free, as I do with most of my old tech, and I shall become as attached to it’s black replacement as I am to the red one.

Yes, I’m a geek. But not for the sake of it. Tech I have has to prove itself and be useful. These cameras have proven themselves over and over again. Long may it be so.