Tools, parts, techniques, and procedures to keep your bike in working order. MAINTENANCE is not the same as REPAIR, a separate tag. Maintenance is what one does on a regular basis. Repair is what one does only when something is broken.

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1answer
42 views

Do one-sided clip-in pedals have a bit more friction and inefficiency than alternatives?

Moving from old style pedals years ago, to when I took up cycling again more recently, I noticed a difference when oiling the bike, while doing maintenance. After oiling an old style pedal, I would ...
1
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1answer
78 views

When should a disc brake be replaced?

I've had my bicycle for about three and a half years. I use it just about every day, for a total of 30 kilometers of commute a day. The problem is that my disc brakes have started making weird noises ...
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0answers
85 views

Ants infestation on bicycle

During the recent trip my road bicycle was mounted on the rack on top of the car, and since I didn't wrap it, nor used the cover, flies and other small insects got stuck on the frame and handlebars. ...
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2answers
78 views

Shifter cable broke down: misuse, lack of maintenance, shifter or regular occurrence?

My rear shifter cable just snapped yesterday. It broke down without any real warnings that I can recall. It neatly broke right at the head, that remained inside the shifter (a Shimano one). If I ...
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6answers
128 views

Derailleur adjustment: front or rear first?

When adjusting both front and rear derailleurs, which should be done first?
3
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2answers
109 views

What tools should I carry around to replace the tube on a bike with bolt-on wheels while on the road?

I'm considering getting a fixed-gear bike for commuting, and I'm unclear on how one can quickly replace a punctured tube on a bike with bolt-on wheels. So far, all the bikes I've had (at least, since ...
3
votes
1answer
32 views

Piston problem, not responsive

I have SRAM Guide R hydraulic brakes. The problem is, the rear brake piston won't come out from the lever body. so I decided to bleed it but it's still less responsive even though I already ...
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1answer
97 views

Can a tapered BB be installed in either direction?

I have a tapered bottom bracket on my bike, like the one in the pic. On this bike, as I bought it, the fixed cup is on the drive side of the bike, while the adjustable cup is on the non-drive side. In ...
3
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1answer
115 views

Can this bike be saved from the rust?

So, I'm buying a bike to use during a summer before I go back home. I found this bike that I'm interested in buying however it's extremely rusty. I'd like opinions on whether this is a DIY clean up, ...
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2answers
113 views

Rear derailleur lifespans

How should I know when my rear derailleur is getting worn? I can measure/inspect chains, tyres and brakes; gears tend to show problems on a new chain if they're worn. But when changing my chain at ...
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3answers
168 views

How do I know when it's time to pump up my tires?

I've been cycling for several months now. However, I have had the misfortune of having two bicycles stolen from me, so I've never had a single bicycle for more than a few months. With time passing, I'...
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votes
1answer
184 views

Is it possible to over-clean a bike chain?

I've seen it suggested that cleaning a chain too often or too thoroughly is bad for it, in that it removes the lubricant from the innermost parts of the chain, where it's most needed and most ...
4
votes
1answer
80 views

How often should I clean my BMX bike?

I recently got my bike and rode it for a good 4 hours yesterday. I'm pretty new to BMX riding, and really want to maintain my bike well. I hear people clean their bike every time they finish, but ...
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votes
4answers
524 views

Is it OK to leave my bicycle unlubricated for a day after a hose-down?

I just cleaned my bike with low pressure water but I don't have any lubricant. I left it to dry in my basement with the window left open. Is there any chance my bike will malfunction or rust before ...
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vote
1answer
65 views

Servicing DT Swiss 240 FRONT hub

this is my first post here. How can I service a DT swiss 240 front hub, as in remove the adapter ( end cap ) to get to the insides? Do i need a special tool? Does it even need servicing? There is ...
2
votes
2answers
128 views

Bicycle crank is wobbly

My bicycle's crank is sorta wobbly - it tilts left or right, according to pressure applied to pedals. How do I fix it? What tools do I need? Video showing the wobble.
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0answers
29 views

Maintenance After Riding a Road Bike in the Rain [duplicate]

I have a relatively new road bike but have never ridden it in the rain or anywhere wet. Let's say, it rains one day and gets my bike pretty wet, what steps do I need to take right after the ride to ...
8
votes
4answers
245 views

Minimalist setup for a “travelling bike mechanic”?

I have very little living/working space of my own and so, in order to keep my personal bike in working order, I need to be able to transport "bike mechanic stuff" (e.g. tools, screws, cables, inner ...
4
votes
4answers
112 views

Inner chainring bent on 6 week old MTB

I bought a new Voodoo Bizango 2015 6 weeks ago. When I was out earlier I changed down and the chain somehow got wedged between the 2 front chainrings (It's 2x10) and bent the inner ring. I've read on ...
3
votes
1answer
47 views

Do the cups of headsets with cartridge bearings wear out?

On my bike I have an FSA headset Orbit X-CX which has cartridge bearrings. I re-grease the headset a few times each year and have recently replaced the lower bearing after ca 13,000 miles. The upper ...
2
votes
2answers
75 views

Wobbly wheel/hub even when I tightened the cones

The wheel has a sideways wobble eminating from the hub. I tried adjusting the cones to the point its too tight but the wobble continues. Upon closer inspection there is play in the point where the ...
3
votes
1answer
57 views

Avoiding hydraulic brake system overfill when bleeding with worn pads

I have limited experience with bleeding Avid Elixir 5, Shimano SLX and cheaper Shimano and Tektro brakes. I usually time the bleed just before brake pad replacement, in order to avoid the risk of ...
5
votes
1answer
163 views

When to replace FS bearings?

I know that when a fork stops working plushly, it should be serviced in order to escape permanent damage. When a chain is noisy, it should be oiled, and when it is worn - replaced - again to prevent ...
2
votes
2answers
142 views

spinning handle bar grips - can it be dangerous

I did have spinning handle bar grips on my bike. I have now replaced them with some specialized lock on grips i.e. bolted on. For example if you're cycling on the road, could spinning grips upset ...
2
votes
1answer
271 views

How to pump tire with cap that won't come off [closed]

I have a Schwinn bike from probably mid 2000's. The front tire has a regular valve cap that I can twist off and pump with a floor pump. The back tire has an oval cap that I cannot get off. And it ...
2
votes
1answer
104 views

Can 'Zefal All in 1' really doall of those: cleaning, degreasing and oiling?

Can someone tell me if 'Zefal' All in 1 Spray is good for: degreasing, oiling and cleaning? Link It seems suspicious because it covers 4 very distinct functions in a single spray; eg: Degreasing, ...
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1answer
89 views

Is component's thread torque a factor in how 'stiff' a bike rides? Would a racer want higher torque?

Is higher pressure into the frame going to reduce vibration and hence improve stiffness?
1
vote
1answer
55 views

Saddle Wash and take care and Maintenance

Can I wash saddle with soapy water? How can I take care of my saddle? My saddle is the GT MTB Saddle, which is made from synthetic materials.
7
votes
2answers
191 views

Why are ball socket allen wrenches

Anecdotally, I see a lot of bike mechanics on the Internet use ball socketed allen wrenches. Is there an objective reason to using them over the 'regular' hex allen wrenches? Are there particular ...
6
votes
1answer
90 views

How to assemble '70s-era center-pull brake

I've (supposedly) got a 1976 Motobecane Le Champion with what appears to be the original center-pull rim brakes, which unforunately are not in one piece and need to be re-assembled: As you can see ...
1
vote
3answers
103 views

If I am using DRY lube, do I need to clean my chain between applications?

Do I need to clean the chain before reapplying dry lube if I am only using dry lube?
1
vote
1answer
62 views

Are chainrings specific to double or triple cranksets?

I have a 2008 Specialized Allez with a triple crankset. The large and middle rings were getting worn so I bought replacements of identical tooth counts for them. However, after installing them I found ...
1
vote
2answers
54 views

Searching model number of Shimano shifting lever

On my daughters bike, the cover of the revo shifting lever is broken. The specifications of the bike say the shifting lever is SL-RS35, but when I look at images in the net, these look completely ...
13
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5answers
2k views

How do you count the number of links in a chain?

I thought this was a simple question but apparently there is some confusion - and it's good to have a basic question to refer people to. How many "links" are in these short bits of chain: Image A (...
2
votes
2answers
111 views

Dutch Bike Winter Cleaning

I am asking this question as I ride a dutch bike (chain guard, mud flaps etc) so my chain is not directly impacted by salt on the roads. However, seeing that there is a lot of water splashing with a ...
3
votes
1answer
116 views

Front drum (was disc) brake only works when going backwards (!)

I am restoring my old bike that hasn't been used for quite a while. The rear brake works fine, however, the front brake has an issue: It only brakes when the bicycle is going backwards, not forwards! ...
0
votes
2answers
97 views

Options for fully lined bulk cable housing

I perform maintenance on 3 personal bikes, and often friend's bikes (a few per year, usually). One of the most common tasks is replacing shift/brake cables and housing. I live in Boston, winter is ...
2
votes
4answers
128 views

Ease of servicing brifters

How easy are "brifters" (e.g. Shimano Total Integration or Campagnolo ErgoPower) to maintain and adjust as a hobby cyclist at home?-- Although quite a lot of road bikes have them (including even light ...
3
votes
4answers
209 views

Ease of servicing disc vs. rim brakes

How easy is it to keep a mechanical (non-hydraulic) disc brake system working at home with a set of "normal" (not bike-specific) tools, especially compared to rim brakes? Discs seem to be currently ...
5
votes
4answers
265 views

Are all vintage bikes difficult to work on?

I have had a couple of vintage bikes (from the '80s and earlier) and all have been absolute nightmares to work on: They always seem to have weird dimensions which aren't available anymore or in the ...
0
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1answer
83 views

How to lubricate a bicycle cable [duplicate]

so I'm very new to all this, so I don't know a lot. My mountain bike will no longer shift gears, I've been told this is because my cables need lubricated, but I have no idea how to do this, so, how ...
6
votes
2answers
117 views

How do I find the right size of bottom bracket?

I have an old cup-and-cone system that I need to replace; for the sake of simplicity, I would like to replace it with a cartridge. Alas, I have no idea how to figure out what dimensions of the ...
0
votes
1answer
90 views

Tyre loosing air pressure despite having no puncture [duplicate]

The front tyre on my bike looses air pressure despite there being no punctures. There is no leak via the Schrader valve either. If I fill up the tyre, it looses a considerable amount of pressure by ...
3
votes
2answers
115 views

How to get this dustcap off?

I have this problem where my pedals seem to be able to be able to rotate on an axis perpendicular to the straight travel of the bike. To take off the cranks, I need to get past a dustcap. ...
2
votes
3answers
98 views

Should I change my chain? It broke once, but its condition seems rather good

Expanding a bit on the title, I ride a 27.5" KTM Peak XT with a 3x10 setup. The chain I'm currently using is of unknown provenience (it was already there when I bought the bike, and it wasn't new). It'...
5
votes
1answer
306 views

replacing shifter cable housing?

My rear cable housing got torn apart while I was tunning gears as you can see in the picture. I'm quite new to cycling so i'm not sure if i should replace the whole cable or just the part of the ...
0
votes
1answer
104 views

Pitted rust on frame [duplicate]

Hello I have some small pitts of rust on my 1980 Raleigh royal frame. I don't want to strip the paint and sand blast it are there any non invasive treatments? Some of the chrome surfaces also appear ...
4
votes
2answers
292 views

How often do you need to bleed your Avid Elixir 1

I have a Trek bike with Avid Elixer 1 hydraulic brake. Not sure if it's a manufacture defect but I have returned to the shop 3 times since I bought the bike this April, for them to rebleed. The ...
3
votes
2answers
189 views

Bearing Race replacement

If have a Shimano FH-M475 rear hub, the cones are pitted and need replacement, the bearing cup on the drive side is pitted, probably still usable, but will never be great. The left side cup is still ...
6
votes
3answers
413 views

Winter tyres or winter wheels?

I've just picked up some lightly studded tyres - winters aren't too bad here but ice can be a problem. The bike is a hybrid mainly used for commuting, with some early starts. Most of my route is ...