My Computer’s Kaput

It was a good ride Sunday morning. Temperatures have finally started to moderate around here, and it was even a little cool when we set off. I was B ride leader for a trip to Creedmoor, a town southeast of Austin. We’d be doing a round trip of about 35 miles.

Only two other riders opted to take the route I wanted to take on the way back. The others decided to take a shorter route home. I liked my route, because a stretch of road has been repaved — with asphalt instead of chip seal — and on one section you crest a hill and swoop down out of the country into a suburban-style subdivision. Fun. I watched the speed on the cyclocomputer climb until it hit 32 mph near the bottom of the hill.

Back on the chip seal again through the houses. I shot through a stoplighted intersection just before the light turned red, but realized that my riding partners hadn’t made the light, so I slowed to wait for them to catch up. As I did so, I heard a ping. Something — I thought it might have been a twig — hit a spoke on my rear wheel. I thought nothing of it, but just seconds later, another, louder ping! and then a clack, and something fell into the street.

“What was that?” I shouted back at the other two riders, who were now getting closer.

I looked down, thinking maybe the water bottle cage had come loose, or the hose on my mini-pump had unfastened as was flopping about. Nope.

Barbara, following farther back than my other companion, stopped in the middle of the street.

“I can’t tell what it is,” she said, as she bent to pick something up. “It says Cateye.”

I was walking back toward her now, and I froze. “Cateye?” I went back to the bike, lifted it off the ground. Sure enough, the speed and cadence sensor unit wasn’t there anymore. It was in Barbara’s hand.

I had no idea what caused it to pop off. I put the unit in one of my jersey pockets, and figured I’d be able to rig some kind of fix when I got home. After all, it was probably just the zip ties that attached it to the chainstay that failed.

But when I had a chance to look it over closely, I saw it wasn’t a zip tie problem at all. The unit broke at one of the points where it attaches to the chainstay mount. I don’t see how I can fix it. I suppose I could find use #254 for duct tape…nah.

Here’s the unit when it was new.

You can see the broken part in the lower right of the picture.

There is some good news in all of this. I remembered this morning that I still have the unit it replaced — a Cateye Strada Cadence. It’s a pretty good computer. It’s wired, rather than wireless, so I’m less keen on it than I have been on the wireless Cateye V2C, but I’ll be able to get it back on the bike this week and be able to keep score on my upcoming rides.

But I’d still like to know what caused such a clean break in the mount.

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