Thursday, November 29, 2012

Rattle, rattle, rattle

One of my favorite and least favorite bike accessories are fenders.  I think they make a bike look damn stylish, and when the water falls from the sky, you stay clean and dry.  The fenders are sort of integral to the look of my bike and I'd be absolutely loathe to remove them, but there's two things that annoy me no end.

One - since it never rains here, I sometimes feel like I'm carrying these things around for looks.  While aesthetics are important, the Surly ain't exactly a featherweight to begin with, and I have aluminum Velo Orange fenders, which are absolutely iconic in terms of their looks.  However, installing them was an absolute bitch (it involved a hacksaw, among other tools), so removing them usually feels pretty non-optional for situations where they aren't necessary (i.e. the Wurst Ride, all of August).  They do also create a bit of sideways wind resistance, which can be problematic in high-speed Texas winds.

The second problem is a bit more personal.  My front fender rattles to no end.  There's a bolt on my front fender which is the attachment point for the stay and the fender itself, and the place the fender slides through this bolt is a bit bigger in diameter than the stay itself.  So every single ride, I get to listen to this the entire time:

Tell me that doesn't make you kind of want to choke a bitch.  Now spend 4 hours tuning it out.

I spoke with Velo Orange this morning about this issue, and most of what they told me doesn't resolve the issue because as far as I can tell this isn't an installation issue, this is something caused by the hardware itself. I love how my fenders look, but this is driving me batty and I need either a solution, or a new set of fenders.


  1. You probably have the cup washer reversed on the fender-to-stay attachment. The bolt should tighten against the fender and never rattle, common installation problem. See VO's on-line instructions.

  2. It turns out I never received a cup washer - they've sent me some which I need to install. I'll post an update once I've got them on there!