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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3
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1answer
913 views

Are Shimano Hollowtech II bottom bracket spacers unique?

I'm moving my Shimano Hollowtech II XT crankset and bottom bracket over from a bike with 73mm bottom bracket to a 68mm bike. The only problem is that I only have 1 spacer and now I need 3 bottom ...
1
vote
1answer
329 views

Cable adjuster recommendations

My cable adjusters always seem incredibly hard to turn, sometimes requiring the extra leverage of a wrench. I'm looking to replace them when I overhaul my bike and replace my current groupset. Does ...
12
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4answers
2k views

What kinds of brake designs exist, and what are their general pros and cons?

Here are the ones I'm aware of: Center Pull Cantilever Slightly better braking than side pull brakes. No recentering problem. Relatively rare V-Brakes Cheap to produce. Similar in braking power ...
2
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3answers
377 views

What should I use to lubricate my kickstand?

The kickstand that came with my bike is rusty and is difficult to adjust. What should I use for lubrication?
1
vote
1answer
308 views

Dismounting wheel in a fixie

I have a fixed gear bike, Rocky Mountain Boroughs Fixie (see picture). The chain is very tight compared to any free wheel bike. So anytime the tire gets punctured (unfortunately very often) and I want ...
13
votes
7answers
2k views

Why would I need a torque wrench for a bicycle?

I was rather surprised to find a question about choosing a torque wrench on this site. I haven't cycled for years, but many years ago when I actually cycled I would do with a set of ordinary wrenches ...
3
votes
2answers
422 views

What are early signs of failure in forks/stem/handlebars?

I ride an SE Lager. In the past year, the following components have worn out or broken Front chainring Rear cog Rear freewheel Chain Seat (one of the bars snapped off) Many, many spokes Wheels ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

How hard is it to disassemble and reassemble a bottom bracket?

I ride an SE Lager. It's a pretty cheap and crappy bike. I've had to replace pretty much everything on it due to wear/breakage. The only area I haven't tackled is the bottom bracket. I can ...
3
votes
2answers
372 views

What should I look for in a torque wrench?

It has come to the point where I need a torque wrench for installing things on my bicycle. What should I look for when purchasing one?
3
votes
3answers
211 views

Bike Repair Information in Germany

I have been riding a bike for many years now, but I am embarrassed to tell you all that I am an novice when it comes to repairing and maintaining bikes. I have always had a problem with repairing ...
22
votes
6answers
2k views

Why do the front and rear brakes work independently?

Why do bicycles have two individual brake levers that work independently to brake each wheel? I've always used my right brake lever because it is more comfortable to do so and I haven't noticed any ...
7
votes
3answers
887 views

When is a good time to change tyres due to age?

When should I consider changing tyres due to age? The tyres in question are five/six years old Continentals.
22
votes
2answers
3k views

What's stopping you from pedalling backwards?

On the BMX bike I have, pedalling backwards moves the chain but doesn't drive the wheels of the bike backwards like you would expect it to. Why is this?
3
votes
2answers
1k views

The drivetrain on my bike needs replacement, given the cost, do I just get a new bike?

Probably best to not go through the specific components on my bike, however, the sprockets, chainset, jockey wheels and chain need replacing due to excessive wear. Coupled with that, the cables are in ...
16
votes
4answers
664 views

Optimal Maintenance Schedule

It is forecast to rain this weekend so I was thinking I would drop a tarp down over my living room floor and give my bikes a bit of a tune up. Question What maintenance needs to be done on your ...
0
votes
0answers
140 views

What is a reasonable maintenance routine for a commuter bike? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How much maintenance? I've purchased a nice hybrid (a Trek Fx) and plan on using it as my daily commuter, maybe averaging 50 miles per week on it. What regular and ...
0
votes
2answers
162 views

Is it possible to loosen or crack the tire when I change a broken tube?

If I don't use the proper tools. Last time I used spoons to take out the tire.
4
votes
3answers
2k views

Bent Chainring causing chain to attempt changing gears

I was riding my road bike last night when something strange happened. I stopped at a stop sign. (I didn't have time to slow down so I was in my highest (fastest) gear. When I started I had to press ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

Trouble getting the right cup and cone hub adjustment

I have a pair of Shimano XT wheels and recently had issues with the hub on the rear wheel requiring new cones and bearings. These were fitted carefully but I've had issues getting the right adjustment ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

How to objectively evaluate torque wrenches?

My local bicycle group bought very nice but very expensive torque wrenches (if I can remember right they cost about €300–500). My local discount store markets them for about €50. My local auction site ...
5
votes
1answer
318 views

does my degreaser hang around and destroy my new chain lube?

I generally clip on the Park chain cleaner, fill it with a cheap department store degreaser (Rubbermaid), run it through for a few seconds, then fill the chain cleaner with water once or twice or more ...
2
votes
6answers
5k views

Adjusting rear derailleur - shifts to lower gear, but not to higher

Well, it will shift to a higher gear, but it takes two clicks of the shifter and it skips over a gear when it does shift. With one click the chain hangs on the current gear by the slimmest if threads. ...
2
votes
2answers
691 views

How to clean consumable metallic parts cheaply while touring?

By the term consumable metallic parts I mean things such as derailleur pulleys, chains and cassettes. I have met tourers that suggested me cooking oil for cleaning the metallic parts, more here. The ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

How to avoid wearing out gears?

I have a Specialized Tricross which I bought new last year. In that time (approximately 1K miles), I wore out my chain and gears. At least two of my gears are still slipping, even with a new chain. ...
9
votes
10answers
2k views

Where can I get some rags?

As I'm getting into the habit of cleaning and maintaining my bike more often, I am burning through my stockpile of rags. Up until now I have been using worn-out clothes as rags. I am going to run out ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Protecting steel bike from salty roads

There is still a lot of salt on the roads in Ottawa, Canada, but I am thinking about starting to use my road bike instead of my mountain bike because the snow is mostly gone. (At least temporarily). ...
10
votes
2answers
8k views

What are the benefits of external bottom brackets?

Pretty soon, I plan to replace the bottom bracket on my early 90's Sakae Litage road bike. It takes a standard, English-threaded bottom bracket. Right now I think it contains loose bearings--I was ...
4
votes
7answers
4k views

What to use to clean a derailleur?

I'm not sure what type of solvent to use to clean a derailleur.
6
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1answer
11k views

When to change derailleur pulleys?

A friend said me that if you have one part in a very bad condition like a cassette and then you put a new stuff like a new chain it will destroy the new stuff very quickly. A LBS said that I should ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Friction in the free hub?

I have noticed there's some friction in my free hub on the TCR - when I pedal backwards slowly, I can get the rear wheel to roll backwards (while on the stand). This strikes me as a bad thing - means ...
2
votes
2answers
678 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 ...
3
votes
3answers
537 views

Where can I buy Framesaver in Canada?

My LBS has told me they're unable to order Framesaver due to difficulties shipping aerosol canisters across the border. Are there any reputable retailers (either online or in the Greater Toronto Area) ...
10
votes
1answer
486 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
328 views

Wiping extra Lube really important with all types of Lubes?

This question about chain maintenance during touring raised this quetion. This tip sounds very unintuitive, of course, I know that the extra lube will attract dust (not good to chain) but I have paid ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

How to maintain chains during touring?

I think requirements are reusable, simple, small-size and things-to-easily-to-carry. There are exotic answers with chain clearers and other things that do not qualify to me simple. Perhaps, the ...
8
votes
3answers
4k views

Attaching a stem to a carbon steerer: how much torque?

So I decided to travel with my bike this week and to my surprise discovered that the steerer is carbon fiber. I had removed the stem from the steerer for packing but naively assumed it was aluminum ...
21
votes
2answers
4k views

How to know when to change a chain?

A bike shop employee used a tool he said would check the wear on the chain, and said that it should be changed. He said it took a measurement that meant the chain had expanded, but it is still hard ...
17
votes
10answers
3k views

How much does bike price correspond with maintenance needs?

In this question (with this answer) I asked about a commuter bike, which is to be ridden 40 km every weekday, in the city. And apparently for this scenario I can choose either of two possible kinds of ...
18
votes
2answers
1k views

Practical cleaning routine for a commuter bike

I regularly (almost daily) ride my bike, often in bad weather. I mostly ride on roads, but sometimes through parks, forest etc. on unpaved surfaces. My bike is usually rather dirty, at least the lower ...
-1
votes
2answers
229 views

Cheap Online Shopping for Small Consumables?

I am looking for different types of lubricants, chains, small metal parts such as a Tubus rack-hinge and just small things that wear easily off -- so-called consumables. I am fed up to high prices ...
4
votes
1answer
5k views

How do I stop my brake from sticking?

The rear brake (calliper) on my road bike sticks. When I pull the brake it pulls down but only half springs back and there's then slack in the leavers. This is causing rubbing on the rim. It's a ...
9
votes
2answers
410 views

How should I clean salt out during Winters?

Pretty simple question but I think some recommendations would make my chains a bit long-lasting. So when should you do something to your salted chains? When the chains already look rusty, can you use ...
8
votes
1answer
915 views

How often should I strip my bike down?

How often should I give my bike a full service? Strip the bottom bracket, clean and grease it. Strip the groupset and freewheel. And what products (or type of) should be used for each process? It's ...
18
votes
3answers
9k views

How do self-adjusting hydraulic disc brakes work?

I have Avid Elixir brakes on my mountain bike. They are the only part of the bike that's a total black box to me. I understand the principle behind disc brakes, and I understand the principle behind ...
6
votes
2answers
4k views

Can my bike be recovered from the rust monster?

First question here, and please note that I am a total bike virgin, other than the fact I can (just about) ride one. Last year I bought a Felt Q520 (I think) the 2009 model, secondhand that had been ...
6
votes
6answers
419 views

Are there brands that sell weather-resistant chains?

I have to bike in bad weather and especially at work i have no way to store my bike in a dry place, this means that my bike chain picks up rust like nothing else, forcing me to clean it a lot. Now i'm ...
12
votes
1answer
1k 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 ...
13
votes
2answers
270 views

How to prevent my hub body from freezing?

In the winter, as soon as its gets a little bit below 0°C, after 10-15 minutes the body of my rear hub gets frozen. This means the pedals/chain do not have any grip anymore on the rear wheel, the ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I maintain a Brooks leather saddle?

I've got a Brooks leather saddle and i like it a lot, but i am entirely clueless on how to care for it. I know i am supposed to rub some sort of fat on it, but i have no idea what kind of fat, or how ...
8
votes
1answer
590 views

Setting chain length

My chain broke and in a moment of silliness (I was cold wet and slightly annoyed) I threw the broken one away before thinking about measuring the new one. Is there a guide to getting the chain ...