Repairs, maintenance, mechanical issues, or drivetrain parts.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

26
votes
13answers
106k views

Creaking from cranks/spindle. How to fix?

Recently the cranks on my bike started to creak. I checked with my usual "bike-bible" Park Tool. They recommended dis-assemble, lubricate, re-assemble. So I did that. Remove cranks. Remove spindle. ...
23
votes
4answers
170k views

How can I tell which size chain my bike uses?

After learning how to break a chain and reattach it, and also how to add and remove a master link, I find that I can now do much more in the way of maintenance at home. I'll no longer need to bring my ...
16
votes
4answers
9k views

How to tighten a brake?

This is probably a really basic question but I'm confused by the whole brake mechanism so... My left (front wheel) brake has to be pulled in really far before it actually starts to brake (I guess ...
16
votes
2answers
3k views

Is there a practical gain from elliptical/oval chainrings?

I have seen competitive (amateur) cyclists with oval chainrings (front). What is the deal? Are they just for showing off, or is there a practical gain from it (different force transfer).
15
votes
4answers
19k views

How do I prevent the rear derailleur from slipping gears?

What's the best way to tune the rear derailleur of my bike to stop slipping gears? It seems that every time I re-adjust it, the middle/upper gears are perfectly aligned, but the lower gears never ...
13
votes
5answers
7k views

Rear wheel slipping out under load

My commuting/cyclocross bike (a Surly Crosscheck) has a problem. If I tighten the quick release skewer to a normal level, sort of firm to close it, then if I step on the pedals hard at some point, ...
13
votes
7answers
2k views

How do I fix a puncture?

I got a flat/puncture on my bike tube, how can I fix it myself without going to the nearest bike shop? What kind of equipment would I need?
11
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 ...
11
votes
2answers
18k views

How can I tell if a chain has a master link?

I need to remove the chain on my internal-hub cruiser to clean it (i.e., no rear or front deraileur), and I'd rather not remove my back wheel if I can avoid that. What do I look for to find the master ...
10
votes
1answer
1k 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 ...
9
votes
4answers
5k views

How to fix front gear taking 2 shifts just to move onto next cog

I was out on a ride yesterday and several times when I was changing up and down between big chain ring and little chain ring (I only have the 2 rings up front) it required 2 gear changes. The gears ...
9
votes
4answers
4k views

How to fix new chain that switches gears when pedaling backwards

I just recently replaced a chain that got incredibly beat up in the winter (it was rusted, and practically stiff when I removed it.) I removed links from the new chain to match the length of the ...
9
votes
5answers
3k views

Why do current, entry-level shimano rear derailers have large-diameter pulleys?

I have seen (and recently bought) entry-level rear derailers from Shimano (Tourney for MTB, 2300 for road bike), and I keep wondering why they are making these parts with such large pulleys. I don't ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Why does my rear derailleur keep breaking?

I upgraded my rear-mech with a new cassette, chain and new cables a few weeks ago since then i've mangled two rear mechs! Both times I've just been riding along; not in a big gear; not at the ...
8
votes
3answers
7k 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 ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

When to replace wheel bearings

I just ripped apart my mom's mountain bike's rear hub. One of the bearings was incredibly rough, so I replaced it, and the other one was smooth, but didn't turn very easily. Since I didn't have a ...
7
votes
4answers
3k views

Bent front sprocket

My chain just started to slip off my front gears and it happens within a minute of riding. I discovered that the middle sprocket is bent. This leads me to my questions: How much should a LBS charge ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Approximately where is the center of mass of a mountain bike?

Take a "standard" multipurpose bike like this one: http://www.islabikes.co.uk/bike_pages/beinn29.html (Weighing 12.2kg) I'm conducting a physics investigation, and for this I need to know the ...
6
votes
3answers
6k views

Unscrewing a rounded allen bolt

I need to take out my rear shock but one of the 2 allen bolts that is holding it (the upper one) has been rounded. I've been told about various ways that such a bolt can be taken out including: ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it possible to replace bearings in Shimano XT bottom bracket cups?

Curious if I can just replace the bearings in my existing cups or if I would need to buy new cups? If possible to replace them then what are possible high quality replacement bearings?
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.
5
votes
9answers
7k views

Is there such thing as a freewheel that doesn't click?

The clicking sound of the freewheel on my singlespeed when it's coasting is annoying for me, so I flipped over my back wheel and rode fixed for a few months in blissful silence. But having to pedal ...
5
votes
3answers
145 views

Derailleur Pulley Wheel Compatibility

I can't find replacement pulley wheels for my derailer that are explicitly made for it. Should I be safe replacing them with a set with the same number of teeth (i.e., the same diameter) and targeted ...
5
votes
2answers
589 views

Busted Dept store Mongoose Shifter - Scrap or Fix

My wife convinced me that we should buy bikes (2x$100.00) @ a dept store. I found a Mongoose (which I can remember used to be decent) and within 6mos I broke the bracket that holds the shifter in ...
5
votes
3answers
158 views

rear shifter lever gets stuck when shifting gears

All the shifting was working smoothly until my bike fell off to the ground (edit1: to my right side hitting the right side of the bike) with me couple days back. Now after about a week when I took my ...
5
votes
3answers
4k views

How to replace a Sturmey Archer's cable?

I would like to replace the cable of a Sturmey Archer hub, but can't find a way to disassemble the old cable without destroying it, and it puzzles me how to insert the new cable. To better explain, I ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

How feasible is it to transfer modern (2010) components to a 90s frame (road bike)

My 2010 aluminum frame may be toast (stripped bottom bracket) and I was considering getting an older chro-mo frame and transferring the components to it. It's a racing/sport style with drop bars and ...
5
votes
2answers
667 views

Wald basket legs too short for cruiser — how can I install the basket?

I recently purchased a large handlebar basket, a Wald 139-WW for my cruiser, a Trek Pure. I'm having trouble installing the basket. Context: The basket attaches using hooks on the basket to the ...
5
votes
1answer
52 views

Back wheel started moving backwards when pedalling backwards

I have a 10 year old cheap 21 speed mountain bike that I have only ever done basic maintenance on (replacing inner tubes, tyres, brake pads, lubricating chain etc). I have just noticed that when I ...
5
votes
1answer
114 views

How do I get rid of weird rubbing noise on my cx bike?

Recently I got the Giant Revolt 3 and have been riding it for a few days now. I have lately noticed that there is some rubbing noise when I apply the brakes. If you look at this picture (might be a ...
5
votes
1answer
863 views

Swapping STIs for barends — what issues are likely to arise?

I'm planning to swap shifters and brake levers from one bike to another. One bike is a randonee with STI brifters, and the other is a Surly Long Haul Trucker with barends and separate brake levers. ...
5
votes
2answers
4k views

Fork lube. Should I use it? If so how often?

I ride a mountain bike with front suspension. I've recently seen fork lube for sale on an online retailer. This got me thinking. Do I need to be using fork lube? How does it help? If I bought some how ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

One stripped post mount on suspension fork

I have a suspension fork, which has a stripped lower post mount, i.e. the bolt used to attach the brake caliper doesn't grip the post. Before anyone asks - yes, it is the correct size bolt, as the ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

How to clean out the inside threads of a braze-on?

I'm installing a basket on my cruiser, and getting some of the allen screws into the fork braze-ons is rough going. It feels like there's dirt or grease inside the threads of the braze-ons. Forcing ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Convert old road bike to comfortable commuter

I have an rather old road bike, that I'd like to convert to a comfortable commuting bike. The bike should be used for everyday commuting (< 5km) and occasionally day tours. I'd like to keep the old ...
4
votes
3answers
24k views

Unable to shift to lower gears; Shimano 6 speed SIS rear deraillers

Presently I'm able to ride my bike only in 5th and 6th gears. I cannot turn the shifter (it's too tight) to move the chain to lower gears. The low stop-screw is all right and it was working till ...
4
votes
3answers
306 views

How do I tune up the shifters/derailleurs on my mountain bike?

I have a Diamondback mountain bike with Shimano shifters that I bought used last summer, and over time the shifting has gone out of whack. For example, on the front wheel I can't shift into the ...
4
votes
1answer
407 views

Fixing hydraulic disk brakes, what to check first?

I have a 10-year old bike, fitted with hydraulic disk brakes. The bike has been actively used for around 4 years only though. Recently, my brake levers started to have more and more "play" before the ...
3
votes
2answers
231 views

Derailleur hanger moves when tightening quick release

I have an old Trek T-900 tandem that my wife and I ride quite a bit. It's got an 8-speed rear setup. It's a standard (tandem) 145mm rear-spacing with matching hub, but tightening down the ...
3
votes
1answer
598 views

Good 9-speed cog configuration for touring and which low-cost quality cassettes?

Alert: this cassette conf cannot be used in all touring locations because of poor support. I use it only in 1st world countries. The largest cog at the back is about 12-14cm. The length from ...
3
votes
1answer
178 views

Overhauled hubs: still some noise

I've just, for the first time, finished servicing the hubs on my bicycle. They are of the cup & cone type (Shimano). The cones of the front hub where pitted so I got them replaced, along with the ...
2
votes
2answers
145 views

Can I straighten bent rims between two flat surfaces?

I have some bent bicycle rims and would like to straighten them. I drew a basic scheme of what I want to do, the idea is to make a concrete plane mold as seen in the design to exert pressure on the ...
2
votes
1answer
106 views

What are the 'parts' to a mechanical disc brake set?

So there are rotors, pads, brake lever, brake cable...I just want to make sure that if i buy brakes I can get all the parts and I'm not missing anything.
2
votes
1answer
85 views

What are these parts?

It fell from the front hub/disc brake/fork area (most likely brake caliper) on my friend's bike which I'm servicing for the first time and I have no idea what they are!
2
votes
2answers
492 views

Recessed brake pivot nut stuck in carbon fork

The recessed pivot nut for my front brake calliper (no. 4 in this diagram) has seized inside the fork. I've managed to remove the brake calliper itself by unscrewing it from the front, but the nut is ...
2
votes
2answers
197 views

I need to change my fork after having an accident with my bike

I need help as I need to change the fork for my bike (Ridgeback Speed 2013 Womens Hybrid Bike) I live in London and I went to few shops but in all of them they need to order the fork and it will cost ...
2
votes
2answers
198 views

22 to 11 speed conversion?

I have a bike equipped with a SRAM 22 speed groupset (hydraulic) and was thinking about converting it to a 1x11. I like the simplicity of the 1x11 system and the potential weight savings from removal ...
2
votes
1answer
293 views

Lubricating screw/braze-on threads: Bike lube or polylube?

Years ago, I made the newbie mistake of forcing a rack screw into a steel braze-on. I had to replace that fork. And I've heard this advice many times: When putting a screw into a braze-on, put a ...
2
votes
1answer
63 views

Columba folder w/mountain 10sp cassette & Sram X7 derailleur

On my bike the derailleur mounting bracket (hanger) is held by the hub axle and therefore fills some of the dropout slot on one side and pushes the axle lower in the slot on that side. So the axle is ...
2
votes
1answer
325 views

Brake response is spongey post-brake lever upgrade

I have just performed an upgrade of brake levers on my Plug Racer, from the original cross-style levers (top mounted, possibly Promax 239A models) to Cane Creek 200TT bar end levers, connecting them ...