From maintaining your chain to taking care of your tires, get expert tips on basic bicycle care and maintenance in this free cycling video.
This is Jim Toledano for Expert Village talking about maintenance and lubing your bike. The bike has a lot of moving parts. Moving parts need to be maintained. Most serious maintenance is something you should allow a professional to do for you because it involves different kinds of tools and different kinds of techniques that the average person probably hasn’t got the time to learn and the money to get. But the most important thing you can do is take care of your chain. The chain goes around the chain ring, through the derailleur, up the cassette. When you’re shifting the chain is moving up and down the cassette, or going from one chain ring to another. It needs to be lubed, but it can’t be over lubed. Too lube on a chain will collect dirt and the dirt will grind away the teeth on the chain ring and the teeth on the cassette. The wheel should turn without wobbling. You look at the brakes. If the tire’s going back and forth, the spokes may be damaged, the wheel may be damaged; you need to take care of that. How do you tell when your tire needs to be replaced? One way is if you can start seeing discoloration in it. You’re wearing the rubber off and you’re getting down to the fabric underneath. Another way is if you see bulges. Because something has hit the tire and it’s damaged the integrity of the tire and you’ve got a little bit of a bulge. You should know that after 1,000 miles on your bike, however that tire looks it needs to be replaced; tires and tubes. If they’ve on the bike for more than a couple years, the same kinds of chemicals and sun in the air that can do damage to your helmet are doing the same kind of damage to your tires and to your tubes. You’re going to put a tube in your tire and it’s going to blow because it’s too old. So pay attention to the condition of the tire. When it needs to be replaced, do so. If you’re in any kind of an accident, if your bike falls, if you run into something, look at it over very carefully and don’t get back onto it until you’re sure there’s nothing wrong. If there is something wrong you need to address it as quickly as possible before you get back on the bike. Bikes are wonderfully efficient machines, and if you take care of them, they’ll last for years and years.
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- An Overview of Bike Seats/Saddles
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