Decent basic article for those new to biking, though it does have you running to the shop a little too often, IMHO. Glad to see cleaning high on the list, too...after a winter of riding, grime and salt (if you live in a salting state) really build up, and do a number on your powdercoat!
I would add that making sure you have a well-stocked roadside toolkit is also KEY to maintenance. Carrying a small set of road tools (hex keys, tire levers, screwdriver, chaintool, patch kit, pump, etc.) allows you to skip long walks back home and make many repairs while riding. Most LBSs will sell an all-in-one tool that covers most of the basics aside from the patch kit and pump--great investment.
This was a very informative article. Most articles here are, but this is something I knew NOTHING about, but wanted to learn more. I have a mountain bike and my mom loaned me her cruiser type bike - I'm trying to figure out which type is best for me, but they both need to be checked out. Now I know how things are connected and how they work and how to tell if something isn't quite right and how to possibly fix it. Yay!
Last year for fathers day i got a tricycle for the day, which i ride whenever possible...the basket on the rear makes it possible to carry my airtank along with a bottle of water along the ride...i made one addition to the basket from last year.I put a piece of plywood in the shape of the baskets so the airtanks doesnt rattle around and i have put some bungee straps to hold my airtank in one place so i can concentrate on my ride and not on some strange noises....and today i used the aritcle to go over and recheck all the systems for a ride in the morning....yehaw lets go riding.....
Great article but I seriously recommend those not experienced with bike mechanics to do some research before attempting to fix/replace their bike components. There are some really good resources online, example: sheldonbrown.com. Getting things replaced at bike shops is generally pretty inexpensive (if you go for standard parts) and the work is done really well and pretty fast (same day turn around on most things). You can also recruit some of your more bike savvy buddies to help you out. There are certain tools you will definitely need to own if you want to do your own work. Here's a list of some basic tools you need for basic mechanic work: allen wrench set, tire levers, lube, tubes, patch kits (should have some even if you don't want to do your own work), and maybe a few other things that I'm forgetting.
Disclaimer: I don't do my own bike work, that's what my bf is for (hehe) but I do help out and I have taken my bike to a few shops to get: one set of cantilever brakes replaced ($20), new front hub bearings ($19), good work done cheaply (priceless).
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