Wally, Meet the 21st Century

The Microshift integrated shifters finally arrived on Tuesday! Another day of no-show the eBay seller would have had to either refund me or send me a new one. But once again, Canada Post came through. Although I suspect that Canada Post "came through" because it is the reason that delivery took so long in the first place. That said, after the mailman unexpectedly rang the door bell to delivery the package, I was ready to rip the box open and install the brake levers as quickly as I can on Wally.

And of course I did just that.

The shifter slid into the handlebar smoothly at first, but I initially had trouble tightening the bolt that holds the shifter onto the handlebar. But after some investigation and some careful use of a few drops of lube, the shifters went on smoothly. The Tektro R312 brakes that I bought aren't the correct reach, but I've left them on the bike (for now). The location of the barrel adjuster was good enough for me to judge how much cable housing I needed, and to route the brake cables. The front brake cable housing needed to be shortened by a few inches, but I was able to re-use the old brakes cables which were in good shape.

After that, I just wrapped the new handlebar tape, taped up the end with electrical tape, and inserted the new plug at the end of the handlebar. Voila! Wally is now almost a modern bike! The difference between the new-look Wally and the original Wally is striking, and I'm not even finished with it yet. I am looking forward to seeing Wally come together; hopefully that will happen in the next week or so.

There are of course a few outstanding tasks on Wally. The problem of buying bicycle components from online sources is that shipping can take awhile, and with overseas vendors, delivery time is always a toss up. So I never get an exact idea of how long before everything can be completed. But here is a list anyway:

  1. Remove old brake calipers & install new brake callipers (10 minutes)
  2. Adjust brake pads (10 minutes)
  3. Tighten brake cables (3 minutes)
  4. Install new bottom bracket
  5. Re-install crankset (10 minutes)
  6. Adjust front derailleur location (2 minutes)
  7. Install chain (5 minutes)
  8. Install shifter cables & housing (10 minutes)
  9. Tighten front and rear derailleurs (15 minutes)
  10. Install and calibrate bike computer (10 minutes)

As you can see, there is about an hour's worth of stuff to do. I'll do them one by one, mostly likely at night after my baby and my wife have gone to bed...