Snap! Literally.

Been an odd week of bike stuff. On my break-away track bike I got a flat in Brooklyn from patch failure. This rarely happens to me even though I’ll have 5 or 6 patches on a tube at a time AND then the glue in my patch kit was dried up /missing. I had only used it once! Then on my way to work yesterday running late and hustling of course, I got a flat on that $100 Benotto I bought on Craigslist and recently rode to the airport. Argghhh. I replaced the tube I had used but not the glue so I had to use another tube. These are like $5 a pop! A burrito in each wheel. Oh well. Little did I know it was only going to get worse.

The gearing on the Bonotto is a 52-18. Ridiculous. But when you buy a $100 bike you don’t really want to put any time into it. I put air in tires, but didn’t even bother to adjust the seat, so why would change the gear? Well the torque from that big gear was apparently too much cause coming down a small hill on my way home from work I felt a snap and instantly went into a skid. My first response wasn’t to look down, but to keep my eye in front of me to make sure I didn’t skid into anything like a moving car or an intersection. When I came to a stop and hopped off this is what I saw:

At first I thought that the chainring had just come loose and then broken. But no, the spider part of the cranks broke off and the force snapped the chainring in half.

Is it from the gear being too big? Or just of questionable history? Many of you are probably saying, ‘what did you expect from a $100 bike?’ and you are right. Could have been a lot worse. Luckily the burrito stand I was heading to was only about a mile off and Sasha, who was run commuting to meet me there, had brought her phone and ran toward me.

Now I have to get new stupid cranks. I hate paying for bike stuff. Probably also need some new tires on my commute bikes for the winter. I know that all of this costs less than the average person spends on gas or car insurance for a month, but it doesn’t mean I have to be happy about spending it! Be safe out there.


Filed under bike, city

5 responses to “Snap! Literally.

  1. this happened to me while riding from pasadena to the bike district for a (non-swarm) potluck. It was right by Ball hardware on Hyperion. I had to scooter my bike the rest of the way.

  2. hey, i spent $3,100 this week on car and car related stuff so whatever. $3,100!!!

  3. 52×18 is not an enormous gear. What broke your cranks is the drilling. That isn't OEM; an earlier owner did that as an "improvement."Home workshop drilling was quite the thing to do back in the 70's, because the weight weenie phenomenon goes back a long way. Anyway, drilling stopped because too many people had experiences like yours.So get yourself some cranks without bonus holes, and use whatever gear you want. You'll be fine.

  4. @jstesney Didn't even realize they are bonus holes till you said this and I looked closely. D'oh. No more of those on my bikes.

  5. drillium!

    don’t worry, i have cheap non-drilled cranks at the house that will match the beautiful exterior on the benotto.