General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
Ehi
Posts: 28
Joined: 5 May 2020, 11:56am

General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby Ehi » 19 Jun 2020, 6:05am

hi guys
As my earlier threads say, I am getting into biking now and want to take it serious and long distance cycling. Hence need to educate myself. I have a few questions.

I ordered a pannier with bag, gps tracker, speedometer, mud guards, bells, kickstand and already have a helmet, googles, pump

1. What are things I need ( I was watching some videos on youtube on puncture repair), also others like allen key, screw boxsets etc


2. I also like to think I have to sign up to a service/maintenance plan e.g with halfords or a local bike shop ???

3. REPLACEMENTS - Just curious, what would it cost to replace things like entire gear sets with chain and who do I go to or is this a DIY Chore ???

4. Any other pointers would be helpful

many thanks
Ehi

mattsccm
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Joined: 28 Nov 2009, 9:44pm

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby mattsccm » 19 Jun 2020, 6:59am

For goodness sake don' t worry about any thing like a set plan. Bikes are so simple to mend on a day to day basis. Maybe try a shop for wheel truing. Not Halfords if at all possible. Develop a good relationship with your local bike shop. LBS. Ask around or look at your local clubs website. They often list favourite shops.
You tube is your friend, the Park videos especially. Just buy the tools as you need them and not a tool kit which will have superfluous junk. Don't buy cycle branded tools unless its a very specific one. Premium price for nothing. Park do a nice book but its all on line.
Chains should be checked for wear to save wearing the cassette . Get a wear check device for a few quid. Chain and cassette will be maybe 40 quid to buy but it could be 100 if its high end.
Start looking at how to do this before you need to. Bed time reading. Familiarity with what is needed will allow you to make informed judgements about what work has to be done before needed thus saving much cash.
A stand is probably a bad idea unless there is a factory fitted mount on the frame. Many bolt on ones can damage many frames terminally. Not all. There are combinations that work well but the wrong ones can kill the frame. Search here for threads that advise before fitting.
Hundreds if little tips out there to help you. Too many to list.

Carlton green
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Joined: 22 Jun 2019, 12:27pm

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby Carlton green » 19 Jun 2020, 8:02am

There’s always a danger in ending up with all the gear but still having no idea, so keep your money in your pocket, take your time and open your mind, eyes and ears to what’s going on around you. The best book on cycling that I ever bought was the now dated Richard’s Bicycle Book. It wasn’t expensive and the time I used to read it (by far the greater investment) has well repaid itself over the years.

Take small steps in whatever you do rather than throwing time and money at things. Join a local Cycling Club, watch what the long established members do and use and join in with their activities - older guys that are careful with their money are usually good guides. Some of the members will do things differently to each other but so long as what they do works for them each of those separate pathways to success is valid (so you might usefully use any of them). Ask the occasional question here and there and before you know it you’ll be on your way to all the information that you need. Local bike shops can sometimes be helpful to your particular needs but it is not always the case, use them with care and a degree of scepticism (caveat emptor).

francovendee
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Joined: 5 May 2009, 6:32am

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby francovendee » 19 Jun 2020, 8:30am

Don't run before you can walk and don't over-think.

My advice to you would be; first do some day rides then plan a night's stop over and finally take a longer ride of a week.

In my experience real bike problems are rare if your bike is well maintained. In the UK a bike shop is never far away if you do have a problem.

Youtube videos can be very useful and give you a good idea how to fix things and what tools you need.

Don't stress yourself, just get out and ride your bike and above all enjoy it. :)

Jdsk
Posts: 764
Joined: 5 Mar 2019, 5:42pm

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby Jdsk » 19 Jun 2020, 10:25am

Maintenance: Knowledge

There are some good YouTube videos, but there's also some rubbish, and there'll be lots that doesn't apply to your bike and components.

I'd start with:

Park Tools "Repair Help"
https://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help

Sheldon Brown
https://sheldonbrown.com

and then search these forums, and then ask if you haven't found the answer.

Maintenance: Tools

This is really difficult when you're getting started. I'd strongly recommend a work stand, if you really have nothing it might be worth buying a dedicated set of bike tools, and this still leaves the specific bits you'll need for your bike. Of course this is all trivial to the professional and the experienced amateur. Again, just ask.

Have fun

Jonathan

PS: Any recommendations for starter tool kits, anyone?

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531colin
Posts: 12968
Joined: 4 Dec 2009, 6:56pm
Location: North Yorkshire

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby 531colin » 19 Jun 2020, 10:44am

Got anything like this in your town? https://pedallers-arms.org/
Last edited by 531colin on 19 Jun 2020, 3:56pm, edited 1 time in total.

JakobW
Posts: 355
Joined: 9 Jun 2014, 1:26pm
Location: The glorious West Midlands

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby JakobW » 19 Jun 2020, 3:45pm

Regardless of how much maintenance you want to do, it's worth knowing how to carry out basic safety checks like the ABC and M checks:

https://www.birmingham.gov.uk/info/5012 ... aintenance

Beyond that, being able to fix a puncture and adjust brakes and gears are probably the most frequent maintenance tasks; if you can do that, depending on mileage, a service at a bike shop once or twice a year should suffice (or you can learn e.g. cable or chain and cassette replacement as and when).

Jdsk wrote:Maintenance: Knowledge
PS: Any recommendations for starter tool kits, anyone?


For basic maintenance a multitool or set of allen keys should suffice; for more advanced stuff, the advice I was given was to buy one of the cheapo sets (Lidl/Planet X), and then replace bits as and when they wear, and/or buy extra tools as required. So far that's stood me in decent stead.

Jdsk
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Joined: 5 Mar 2019, 5:42pm

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby Jdsk » 19 Jun 2020, 3:48pm

I've been very pleased with tools from Lidl and Aldi. Including a work stand. But haven't bought a bike tool set there.

Jonathan

mikeymo
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Joined: 27 Sep 2016, 6:23pm

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby mikeymo » 20 Jun 2020, 2:04am

531colin wrote:Got anything like this in your town? https://pedallers-arms.org/


Fantastic place and lovely people. When I built up my bike I did all the "specialist tool" jobs there one evening. "Specialist" being, to me at the time, headset press, cassette and bottom bracket tools. It's a great resource for Leeds.
Hilarious, pithy, or philosophical signature.

Jamesh
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Joined: 2 Jan 2017, 5:56pm

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby Jamesh » 20 Jun 2020, 12:10pm

I picked up this book and loved it.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Zinn-Art-Road- ... drukspg-21


So much that i ought to buy myself a copy!

Cheers James

gregoryoftours
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Joined: 22 May 2011, 7:14pm

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby gregoryoftours » 20 Jun 2020, 1:54pm

I agree the Zinn books are good; their enthusiasm is infectious! As far as basic maintenance stuff I'd learn to check the bike over for safety, how to clean and lube the right parts to prolong life, how to adjust brakes and gears, how to replace brake pads, how to remove/refit wheels and fix a puncture/change inner tube/tyre. Get a chain checker as has been said, and replace your chain as soon as it shows up as worn to slow down wear on other components. Best thing to do is just get out and ride, and learn things as they come along. You'll never remember everything by trying to learn it all in one chunk! Just enjoy it!

Ehi
Posts: 28
Joined: 5 May 2020, 11:56am

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby Ehi » 22 Jun 2020, 5:32pm

mattsccm wrote:For goodness sake don' t worry about any thing like a set plan. Bikes are so simple to mend on a day to day basis. Maybe try a shop for wheel truing. Not Halfords if at all possible.t.


thanks a lot everyone. I had a free health check at halfords, whom I noticed oiled my gear/chain and stopped a griding noise for free.

All other points noted. I used to have a local group, but they dont seem to be going out this year. Maybe covid ???

531colin wrote:Got anything like this in your town? https://pedallers-arms.org/

Its in Leeds, and I live in Hull. I should be moving there as work changed last year

Jdsk wrote:I've been very pleased with tools from Lidl and Aldi. Including a work stand. But haven't bought a bike tool set there.

Jonathan


woudl check that out I got an allen key set for £5 on fb marketplace

thanks everyone

jgurney
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Joined: 10 May 2009, 8:34am

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby jgurney » 22 Jun 2020, 5:50pm

Ehi wrote: I ordered a pannier with bag,


Panniers are bags, and come in pairs. Do you mean you have ordered a rack and pair of panniers?

I also like to think I have to sign up to a service/maintenance plan e.g with halfords or a local bike shop ?


It is certainly a good idea to become a regular customer at a good local bike shop, and to have your bike serviced there unless you can do a great deal of your own mechanical work. However I don't see much point to a 'service plan' (in fact I had never heard of them existing for bikes until your post prompted me to look). Most independent bike shops don't offer them. I take mine into my preferred local shop (London Cycle Workshop, in my case) twice yearly for servicing, but I use the bike for both all-year commuting and touring. Yours may not need servicing twice a year. Once you are known as a regular servicing customer, a good shop will usually be helpful over other things.

Ehi
Posts: 28
Joined: 5 May 2020, 11:56am

Re: General Advice - Bike maintenance, DIY, educating myself etc

Postby Ehi » 22 Jun 2020, 6:04pm

jgurney wrote:
Ehi wrote: I ordered a pannier with bag,


Panniers are bags, and come in pairs. Do you mean you have ordered a rack and pair of panniers?

I also like to think I have to sign up to a service/maintenance plan e.g with halfords or a local bike shop ?


It is certainly a good idea to become a regular customer at a good local bike shop, and to have your bike serviced there unless you can do a great deal of your own mechanical work. However I don't see much point to a 'service plan' (in fact I had never heard of them existing for bikes until your post prompted me to look). Most independent bike shops don't offer them. I take mine into my preferred local shop (London Cycle Workshop, in my case) twice yearly for servicing, but I use the bike for both all-year commuting and touring. Yours may not need servicing twice a year. Once you are known as a regular servicing customer, a good shop will usually be helpful over other things.


Yes both rack and panier

The health check was free, I am still getting into the hang of other things