Exploding Gear Shifter
Siegfried’s fitted with a 5-speed Sturmey Archer hub, and a thumb trigger shifter like this:
I’ve been riding Siegfried for about a month, and have always found that the gears are prone to step up - if you select first gear, it doesn’t take much of a nudge on the shifter for it to jump to second; if the bike’s parked in first or second, just turning the handlebars to the left is enough for it to skip up to third, or even fourth gear.
I’d had enough of this yesterday, and while I was in the lift (elevator) at the Southern end of the Tyne Pedestrian Tunnel, decided that the red tightening screw on the top of the shifter obviously needed . . . tightening.
So I fished a penny from my pocket, inserted it into the slot and twisted.
Big mistake - turns out that the red plastic ‘tightener’ is only a dust cover, and when you twist it, it pops out. And the screw underneath it was almost completely undone, so the whole shifter assembly did a reasonable impression of the clowns car at the circus - the one that spontaneously falls to pieces.
Fortunately I managed to grab hold of it and keep all the bits from disappearing. And I happened to have a multi-tool in the bottom of my briefcase (doesn’t everyone?), so once I got out of the lift, I could park the bike up and re-assemble the shifter.
As I said, that screw was pretty much out, so now I’ve done it up, the problems with the gear shifting seem to have been pretty much fixed.
And I wasn’t even late for the meeting I was riding to.