In the last post in this series, I noted that I ordered the front basket I had been coveting and that it "kind of worked out" - which needs some explanation. To that end . . .
I needed some other work done on my bike so I left it at the shop to have them install the basket when it arrived. I got a call from the shop telling me that my bike was kind of ready, which was a first. Typically your bike either is or is not ready to pick up. The dude who called me was not the one who had worked on the bike and said the mechanic would explain when I arrived. As a reminder, this is the product I had ordered -
And if you notice, at the end of the red arrow there is a series of three holes which are meant to allow for adjustment when installing the basket. However, the basket that had been delivered only had one set of holes drilled - pretty strange really. The mechanic had installed the basket, but could not thread the screws that came with the basket through the holes due to a slight mismatch between the bend in my handlebars and the basket hooks. He did say that with a little coaxing, he thought the basket could be made to fit, but he did not want to take responsibility for the "coaxing". I took a look and although flummoxed as to why additional holes were not drilled, decided that I was probably capable of making things work. I discussed two options with the mechanic -
1) drilling additional holes
2) bending the clamps to fit my handlebars
He gave me a couple of zip ties and I threaded them through the holes to secure the basket for the journey home.
After arriving home I cracked open a beer and stared at the hooks and handlebars for a while, I decided to choose the bending option and covered a hammer with an old sock and started to "coax" the hooks. I was successful, however the bolts that came with the rack were a bit too thick to fit through the holes when I had them lined up - I could get the bolt through the top hole, however due to the bend it hit the handlebar and I could not get it through the second hole. I knew a thinner bolt would work, but that I would also likely need a washer to keep the thinner bolt from sliding through the hole. A quick trip to the hardware store and . . .
However, the story is not over. I had a nice new (coaxed on) front basket, but it's installation rendered my handlebar mounted light ineffective! What to do! Stay tuned . . .