Monday, August 11, 2008

Rust Removal

Lise's Centurion has been in our shed, and has picked up a bit of rust on the chromed Tange headset. She is wanting to commute to school this fall, which only makes sense. Julian will be in daycare, and the university is just up the hill from where I work. We could probably bike pool together.

Yesterday I started rebuilding a rear singlespeed wheel for her using a beautiful vintage high flange Campy Record hub laced to a FIR rim. "Made in Italy" is the order of the day. It is always nice having spare parts lying around. Fortunately I had spokes that were the right length--- some nice DTs.

Tonight I fished the bike out of the shed. I did a quick google search on rust removal, and found all sorts of references to odd products and substances I had never heard. Further research indicated that hydrochloric acid was the active ingredient. Some down home advise suggested vinegar. That sounded much better than searching for some obscure wood bleaching agent. To my great chagrin, white vinegar worked just fine. The rust peeled off with a bit of finger nail rubbing. I gave the bike a full cleaning, and it looks better than new. It really is a sharp bike--- a lugged Centurian RS with a bunch of new components. I dropped a gear for her so she can more easily handle the hills. Before Julian arrived, we went on some epic rides, but it has been some time since she has ridden. Running single speed, she can coast down hill, so gearing isn't quite as crucial as on a fixed gear. This weekend I will take Julian in the trailer and we will have to try it out.

On a different note, I will be back in Boston in early September. My fun days of being at home will soon be over. I also have a trip to San Diego planned in November. Hopefully I can drop in and see my parents then.

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