I got caught in the very heavy rain last Tuesday, and the BSA got saturated (not to mention the rider). However, it seemed to have dried out fairly well.
But this morning, going to and from the Community Bike Workshop at Plympton, I was having trouble getting the outside sprocket (high gear) on the cassette. It would not change the final step unless I backed off, went down one, and then changed two at once.
Oiling and cleaning the chain made a slight improvement, but still not good. The trouble was in the gear cable. The plastic serving on the outer was cracked in a few places, and had probably let in a lot of water. So I decided that a new cable was in order.
Off to Glenelg Cycles (on the BSA) to get a piece of outer 1700 long (bought 2000), and a new inner, just in case. Back home and changed the cable, outer and inner both. The resistance to movement in the old one is terrible, and the inner was quite wet when I pulled it out. The difference in gear changing with the new cable is amazing. (Friction shifter.)
Afterwards, I thought: How long has that cable been there? Answer: 24 years. I put it on (with the shifter on the left, not the present (normal) right) when I put a double sprocket system (18/14) on the SA 3-speed, long before the conversion to 18-speed in 1992. With the 1992 conversion, the rear derailleur was left on (complete with spacing washers for 1/8" chain), and the shifter moved to the right side, and the front (triple) shifter put on the left.
In retrospect, I probably should have changed it years ago, but... 24 years is a good life.
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