The purchase of this wheelset was the start of my attempt to build a budget 29er. These wheels were introduced here https://www.densbikepost.com/bike-stuff/ You can purchase many budget 29ers on the market ($600-$800). However, the parts on these bikes would not be the level I would desire and the ensuing upgrades would quickly raise the cost of the bike.
What I will be doing with this build is using a combination of new and used parts to build a 29er mountain bike that will perform as well as some bikes costing twice as much. I will be posting parts as I build this bike and put them on the bike. I am in no rush as I will not be able to trail ride until August of this year. I will have the bike done before then and will start to test it on the local gravel roads.
The next part that would need to be obtained was the frame. I searched eBay as well as local sources and decided to purchase this frame. It is an 18 inch Kona Kahuna frame. It is used and in good condition. There are a couple of dents in the top tube, however they do not affect the integrity of the frame. The frame weighs four pounds even. Not super light, but not heavy by any standard.
This is my starting point and the platform that I will be building from.
Stay tuned as this build progresses.
Saturday, February 10, 2018 was my mom’s 91st Birthday. She was not really thrilled about this, but we were. We went out to see her and took some food with us. We did a little picnic dinner of hot dogs, baked beans, potato salad and chips. I had baked a cake and Jay Jay did the frosting. We had a good time and so did mom!
Saturday was also the USA Cycling Fat Bike Nationals in Grand Rapids, Michigan. We attended this event last year. This year the venue was Cannonsburg Ski Area. To see the pro podiums follow this link to Fat-Bike.com https://fat-bike.com/2018/02/house-greaser-winners-at-2018-usa-cycling-fat-bike-national-championships/
Sunday was the annual Endurance Sport Swap Meet at the Fenton Winery and Brewery put on by CycleFit. I went to the event with Don Stange and Raymond. The weather probably kept people away. However, it was a dud in my opinion. I was hoping to find a few things that I was looking for. Very few vendors and the ones that were there had nothing I needed. Not sure that I will return next year?
Not much else going on and will be back to work in a week.
I started the week off on Monday by driving for the first time since my surgery. It felt good to get behind the wheel again. My back does bother me while driving, however it does not impede my ability to drive.
On Wednesday I had an appointment with the surgeon. She was very optimistic with my progress and still feels that I am ahead of schedule with my progress. We discussed my vomiting with her again and she prescribed some medication that she feels will help. This medication should help food process quicker and move out of the stomach. She also suggested that I weigh myself daily to keep track of my weight. She does not feel that I should lose much more. She also approved me to return to work on February 19, 2018 with no restrictions. She did suggest that I only start with half days and work my way up to full days.
On Thursday I had an appointment with the Medical Oncologist. We discussed the consult at U of M as well as with MD Anderson. We also talked about the surgeons recommendation. We agreed to not do any further chemotherapy and to monitor my progress closely with Cat Scans over the next year. Michelle and I are very comfortable with this decision and believe it is the correct one for me.
I have been enjoying driving and the freedom it brings. I took Brendan to school three times this week including this morning (Friday). We had another snow storm start overnight. We got a lot of snow in a short time. I am writing this around 3:00pm and it looks like the snow has stopped. Brendan has basketball practice scheduled for this evening and a game in Mt. Pleasant tomorrow. I have not been traveling to his games yet. My back is giving me a lot a problems. It is feeling better everyday, just frustrating.
Next week will be my last week at home. So I will do as much as I can before returning to work.
I will be introducing a project soon after returning to work also.
It was nice to be back home again. Even though I received excellent care in the hospital there is nothing like being at home. I would start to have a visiting nurse stop in a couple times a week. This would reduce to once a week after a couple weeks. She taught Michelle how to pack my wound and she would also check it to make sure it is healing properly. As I am writing this the wound is getting very close to being healed.
I am gradually increasing my activity by walking more around the house. I still need to take it easy and be careful. I will see my doctor on Valentine’s Day and hope to get a little more freedom and an approximate date on returning to work.
On January 30 we made a trip to the University of Michigan Cancer Center. We were getting a second opinion on follow up treatment. The doctor explained things very well and there will be no more treatments. However, I will be monitored very closely over the next year. There will be Cat Scans every 3-4 months over the next year.
I was still having an issue with vomiting at night. I need to be elevated when I sleep. We tried using pillows and a bed wedge with some success. We decided that we would get an adjustable bed. We were in need of a new mattress even before this. The bed has made a difference and is definitely helping the issues I was having with my back.
Since surgery I have lost 34 pounds. I did not have any idea of how difficult this would be. I am eating better now and feel stronger every day. My legs are no longer wobbly when I stand up.
There will be more doctor appointments and tests coming up. I will post here with any new developments and I have some other things in the works also related to bikes. Stay tuned.
After the news of the PE I was taken to the Emergency Room to be admitted. I was registered and immediately taken back to the emergency room where I was met at my room by one of the ER Physicians and a nurse. I was immediately put in a bed and they explained what would be happening while they waited for a bed in the hospital to open.
Many things took place in a very short period of time. Blood was drawn, an EKG was done and an ultrasound was also done. After about an hour they started a Heparin IV to start breaking up the blood clot. I was very uncomfortable in the bed and an aide assisted me by using several pillows to get me comfortable. She was very kind and new what she was doing. After about an hour and a half in the ER I was moved to 2 South at Covenant Harrison. Things moved very quickly.
Michelle had arrived to the ER just before they came in for the ultrasound. So she was there when they moved me. I was settled into my room and the nurse had to ask several questions for my admission. This took a good 30 minutes. I was placed on bed rest. This meant I could only get out of bed to set on the commode and I had to have a nurse or aide there when that took place. Being stuck in bed would be the most difficult part of this stay.
All the caregivers were wonderful once again. They took great care of me and were very kind. My first roommate would be discharged on Friday. I was alone in my room until late Friday night when I was moved to the room next to me to make room for two female patients that were being admitted. My new roommate was not a good match. Not a bad person, but his needs did not match mine. He had his TV on all the time and it was loud. The nurse had to turn it down the first night I was in the room. He also needed a light on all the time. He liked the room warm and I liked it cool. We managed to make it work for both of us.
Saturday was a very long day as Brendan had basketball and Michelle did not get to the hospital till late afternoon. We had our date night and watched a movie in the room. We shared a set of headphones so we could here the movie on the iPad. It was really fun! She is a wonderful wife. I don’t know what I would have done if I would have had to go through this alone?
It was also determined during this stay that my wound from the infection would need some special attention. The wound would need to be packed with ribbon and then covered with gauze. This would allow the wound to heal from the inside out. The nurses were also concerned about my staples still being in as they appeared to be getting irritated. The surgeon did not want them removed yet. They would be removed during my office visit midweek. The nurses taught Michelle how to pack the wound so she could do it when I got home. It would also be set up for Visiting Nurses to stop by the house to check on the wound and to help Michelle if she had questions on the packing.
Sunday came and I was hoping that I would be able to go home. Even though I was receiving the best care possible there is nothing like being at home. The doctor that was in charge of my care for the PE did not have a regular time that he stopped in. Michelle came earlier just in case and it was nice to have her there with me. The NFL division championship games were also on so I had something to watch on TV. I would get to watch the entire AFC game before being discharged. Michelle stepped out for a while and that is when the doctor came by. Raymond also stopped by to visit at this time. The doctor did discharge me and we were on our way home by 7:00pm.
We stopped at Taco Bell for dinner. I had a shredded chicken burrito, it was very good! We got home and I got settled in and watched the NFC championship game. There is still a long road ahead.