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.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (2)

16
votes
9answers
10k views

Is there such a thing as frame failure?

Several general questions have been asked regarding how long a bike or bike frame will "last", and the gist of answers seems to be that a bike can last quite a while of the replaceable components are ...
5
votes
2answers
18k views

Which lubricant/grease to use for ball bearings?

A little mishap happened today during cleaning my bicycle. I tried to take off the sprocket wheel for easier access, but instead I opened the lock nut of the hub (cassette type) and the balls came out....
11
votes
3answers
2k views

What's the point of removing the excess oil after lubing the chain?

There is a very strong point in bike-mechanics culture, which I've seen in very competent answers here, too, to apply one drop of lube in every single roller of a clean chain, and then (!very ...
4
votes
2answers
222 views

Intermittent disc brake rubbing

My partner has a Kona Sutra with Avid BB-7 disc brakes. The front brake rubs intermittently on the rotor. I just went to see if I could figure out what the problem was and right now the disc runs true ...
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?
2
votes
2answers
985 views

Which master links for 1/8 inch aka BMX chains?

It was very easy to find master links for 3/32inch (aka 9-speed chain) but I cannot find them for 1/8 inch (aka BMX chain). My chain is the Nexus CN-NX10. Cannot understand the odd observation that ...
1
vote
1answer
61 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 ...
2
votes
4answers
2k views

How to fix a sluggish bike?

I just bought a used mountain bike, and it seems to be slow. Pedaling seems like very hard work, and at a normal casual pedaling rate, I can only reach 4-5mph. If I pedal like I'm being chased by a ...
1
vote
2answers
51 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 ...
17
votes
6answers
38k views

How often should I grease and repack my hubs and bottom bracket?

I am commuting 7 miles a day (round trip) in all weather in New England (temperate, moderately wet climate, cold winters). Overall I am putting about 1000 miles per year on my commuter bike, a 2009 ...
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! ...
16
votes
2answers
3k views

Preventing frozen brake cables

This response to another question provides a wealth of info on winter riding preparation, but doesn't mention any techniques for preventing cables, especially brake cables, from freezing. Is there a ...
2
votes
2answers
110 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 ...
1
vote
3answers
19k views

I need help replacing my bike's tube

I recently popped the tube in my front tire and need help replacing it. I don't really know very much about bikes or the assortment of numbers on tubes, tires, and wheels. Here is what I do know: The ...
5
votes
7answers
6k views

What to use to clean a derailleur?

I'm not sure what type of solvent to use to clean a derailleur.
3
votes
4answers
199 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 ...
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
127 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 ...
5
votes
4answers
264 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 ...
2
votes
3answers
6k views

Dahon handle post hinge loosens too quickly

I noticed that the handle post hinge on my Dahon Speed D7 now requires attention much more often than it used before. Unlike main frame hinge which remains tight for long after adjustment, this one ...
16
votes
1answer
685 views

How do I wrap a road bike handlebar?

What is the best way to wrap a handlebar? Specifically: Should I start near the stem or at the bar ends? wrap clockwise or counter-clockwise? How to wrap (e.g. how many times) around where the ...
0
votes
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 ...
5
votes
4answers
219 views

The shifter for the front derailleur is “soft” in my vintage bike

So I bought a used vintage bike. I just love the bike and it's awesome. However it came with one problem: gears problems. First of all I have very little experience with bike, especially gears (...
4
votes
2answers
251 views

Tire Repair / Maintenance

This question, What's the cause of the tyre cut, got me wondering if there is anything that can, or should, be done to repair small cuts in the tread of a tire. As I was looking at the damage to the ...
6
votes
2answers
116 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 ...
7
votes
2answers
295 views

When should the metal clips be replaced on a brompton folder?

I have a brompton which is about 7 years old. Do I need to think about replacing the aluminium clips that lock the frame in place when unfolded?
4
votes
2answers
281 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
239 views

Shifting from Shimano 2300 to Tiagra

I have a road bike that I use mostly for touring (2-3 day trips) and my daily commute (~25km). It's loaded with the Shimano 2300 (2013) 3 X 10 groupset. I know it's not the most efficient or ...
0
votes
1answer
89 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 ...
12
votes
4answers
8k views

do DT Swiss 240 hubs need proprietary tools to maintain them?

the bearings in my DT Swiss 240 hub appear to be shot, I have the toolkit for and am used to maintaining Chris King hubs but I wonder if I have to get special proprietary tools for the DT hubs as well?...
4
votes
1answer
106 views

Can I use 53-39T chain rings with compact cranks?

I have shimano 105 5700 compact crank(50-34T). Can I use 53-39T chain rings with compact right arm.
17
votes
7answers
3k views

How many miles and/or commuting seasons will a modern internal geared hub last?

I've been considering drive trains on a utility / commuter bike. What are expected or actual lifetime / maintenance needs of modern internal hubs? The Shimano Alfine internal 8-speed hub is on ...
3
votes
2answers
112 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. ...
4
votes
2answers
592 views

Where to park a bike during a year for free ? (in the Netherlands?)

We are two French in love with the Dutch people and culture. Each time we have the time we rush there. Rather than hitchhiking (as we used to), we plan to travel across the Netherlands by bike as it ...
2
votes
3answers
97 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'...
12
votes
4answers
2k views

Will a bicycle trailer damage my (steel) bicycle?

I have a rhode gear trailer with a 100 lb capacity, similar to the burley and other brands, that attaches to the left chainstay (see image of hitch below). I currently have it attached to my heavy-...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

Do brake cables become more elastic with time?

I bought a used bike a few months ago, and I've noticed a drastic reduction in brake power. At first, I was easily able to lock-up the rear wheel while squeezing the brake lever only half-way to the ...
0
votes
1answer
92 views

Gear mis-adjustment. Loss of gears

How do I adjust the rear gears of a bike that will not change to higher gears? It is stuck in lower two or three gears.
3
votes
1answer
182 views

Fettling issues - slow shifting rear gears while riding

I've recently had an issue with my gearing, struggling to shift down onto the last few cogs on the cassette. I've got a Shimano Ultegra 6800 groupset, but when I shift whilst riding, I get a "tick-...
5
votes
1answer
299 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
103 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
279 views

Can I 'toe in' these cantilever brake pads?

I'm riding a new bike (new to me) and I am unfamiliar riding with some of the components, specifically the cantilever cross brakes. On my road bike, I toe in the brake pads to help with noise, feel, ...
7
votes
9answers
929 views

How to fix/prevent blocked cleat bolts

I've had my SPD touring shoes for about seven years. The cleats are the originals and are now quite worn and I noticed recently that one of them (not pictured) is at a rather wacky angle that can't be ...
5
votes
1answer
269 views

Bottom Bracket Compatability Question

Good afternoon all! In previous questions, I've mentioned that I intend to rebuild my 2000 Trek 7700 Multitrack. Well, I'm beginning by replacing the bottom bracket. According to the spec sheet I ...
4
votes
1answer
15k views

Shimano Chainring Compatability

In my previous question we determined that I probably need new chainrings. I was/am planning on replacing the chainrings, and leaving the original crank. Now this bike is running Shimano 105 FC-5600 ...
1
vote
1answer
62 views

how to remove through axle on raleigh 2.0?

I have a Raleigh RX 2.0 cross bike with through axles and I'm having trouble removing one. On the rear wheel, when i try to unscrew it, the lever unscrews but not the axle. If I keep unscrewing, the ...
1
vote
1answer
41 views

Cone size for Shimano Type D on Schwinn Cruiser

What size wrench do I need for the rear hub on my Schwinn cruiser? It is a Shimano Type D. Also, what grease is recommended that I might be able to by locally. Thanks to all.
3
votes
2answers
182 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
102 views

Shimano 105 11 speed rear derailleur wont shift

It happened the last time I washed the bike. Its happened again this time. The rear derailleur wont shift the chain up even though I was careful about not pushing the cog wheel up or down. Last time ...
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 ...