Habits. We all have them. Some are bad habits, actually probably too many of them are bad habits. They do die hard as the saying goes. However, don't discount all of your habits! Let's refer to those good habits as processes! Yeah, that sounds better.
I had a recent reminder about why we need processes. I was working on a customers bike, one that was in very respectable condition when I began the tune-up. I clicked through the shifting, a little off, but overall pretty good. A few adjustments and the front and rear derailleurs are zipping through all of the shifts. Check. On to the brakes. Those were pretty good too, but I have my habits...er...processes, so I fold the excess cable over, zero in the pad contact, and dial in the spring tension and voila, they are golden and symmetrical in their arc to the rim. Things are feeling good.
I go through the other areas. I'm nearly done. The final piece of the process, check every bolt and break out the torque wrench. Why? It's a newer bike and in pretty good condition coming in. Is it really necessary? Absolutely. The first two bolts I checked, the rear brake boss bolts. They were quite loose, certainly not anywhere near proper torque spec, and near the danger territory. I finish my routine and find a several other bolts that weren't just a bit off, but not even close.
Would it have been quicker to just eyeball everything, polish it up and move on. Sure would've. But that's not my process. I check every bolt. Always. I may not see another loose bolt in a key area for a year, but I know I will catch them because I have a process.
Rider or is it writer?
My name is Adam Harris. I'm a lifelong cyclist. I love bikes. All types of bikes. I hope I can relay the joy that cycling provides me through glimpses into my thoughts and some of my mini adventures.