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Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

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Old 10-06-07, 12:53 PM   #76
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Have a cup of coffee while you're setting up to do a repair.
Have a beer if said repair isn't going well.
But think carefully about continuing the repair after the beer. After two beers - go and have another. Leave the bike until next day for sure.
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Old 10-06-07, 02:53 PM   #77
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To improve shifting performance of the rear derailleur, loosen the B screw as much as possible. To do this, put the chain into the lowest gear combination (largest cog, smallest chain ring) and loosen the B screw while back pedaling until the jockey pulley starts to rub the cog. Then tighten the screw back in just until the rubbing stops. Most manufacturers set the B screw in too tight when the derailleurs are new, but loosening this screw in effect raises the point of chain deflection making it easier to derail the chain to the next cog.
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Old 10-13-07, 05:48 PM   #78
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I was asked to post this here:
Trombone cleaners work really well for cleaning loose rust out of seat tubes. They are about $5 at any music store that sells band instruments. For oversized tubes or when you want a little more scrubbing power, get a tuba cleaner
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Old 10-26-07, 02:05 PM   #79
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I was asked to post this here:
Trombone cleaners work really well for cleaning loose rust out of seat tubes. They are about $5 at any music store that sells band instruments. For oversized tubes or when you want a little more scrubbing power, get a tuba cleaner
Thanks sivat, very much appreciated!

Here is the original post, which contains some other info:

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One other thing:
If you do buy the bike, it wouldn't hurt to clean out the seat tube (a trombone cleaner works great for this, $5 at you local music store) and use some framesaver. I've been told that the seat tube is really the only tube that needs to be sprayed, but if you have a bare frame, it doesn't hurt to spray everywhere you can.
I'm a big fan of classical music, this is about the only time these two of my hobbies met
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Old 10-26-07, 03:37 PM   #80
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Sometimes you might be in a hurry, and don't have time to adjust the diskbrake calipers correctly. Or just you can't adjust them, no matter what you do. If all you need to do is distance the rotor a tad from the left caliper, you can achieve this QUICKLY with an ad-hoc spacer you put between the left axle end and the left dropout - and this spacer you can make from a slightly thicker aluminm foil, like the top cover of butter or margarine boxes or such. It's actually a surprisingly durable spacer, it will survive easily 20-30 wheel extraction-reinsertion cycles.
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Old 11-11-07, 04:49 AM   #81
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Cheap Dicta-like freewheel which you can't remove? You can, using this method.
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Old 11-15-07, 06:05 PM   #82
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I just did this, and it worked great:
If you have a steel frame thats been sitting around awhile that you want to build, the BB shell might have some rust in it that have deformed the threads a bit. Chase the threads with old BB cups. Go slow and use some light lubricant. all ready for a new BB!!!
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Old 11-15-07, 08:19 PM   #83
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I just did this, and it worked great:
If you have a steel frame thats been sitting around awhile that you want to build, the BB shell might have some rust in it that have deformed the threads a bit. Chase the threads with old BB cups. Go slow and use some light lubricant. all ready for a new BB!!!
Was it a steel or aluminum cup you used for chasing the threads? Or perhaps plastic (like the cheaper Shimano BBs)?
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Old 11-19-07, 08:31 AM   #84
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Was it a steel or aluminum cup you used for chasing the threads? Or perhaps plastic (like the cheaper Shimano BBs)?

Excellent point!!! I should have mentioned that steel BB cups are the thing to use when doing this. And make sure they go in straight, and make sure your threads are the same measurement!!
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Old 11-19-07, 10:06 AM   #85
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I had bought a used steel frame once, which had the BB threads in a terrible shape. I chased them by carefully using a cardboard cutter blade. Took me some time, but it seemed safer than using a cup. I just didn't trust myself to be able to position the cup 100% correctly. I was worried I'd compound the problem.
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Old 11-19-07, 01:44 PM   #86
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My favorite BB tool add-on: long breaker bar with a socket appropriately sized to fit over the head of your BB tool. Has been crucial on a number of occasions for me. In fact, I recommend the breaker bar and a set of 1/2" drive sockets for any mechanic.

Another useful adaptation is grinding a slot in the blade of an old screwdriver (vertically), for un-hooking pesky caliper brake springs.
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Old 11-30-07, 07:01 AM   #87
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Also, when putting a tire back on the rim, spraying the outside of the rim and the outside of the sidewall with Windex (or another quickly-evaporating liquid) will make your tire tool run more smoothly as you fit the tire back on.
Using a tire tool for installation can often lead to a pinched or cut tube. Roll it on with the balls of your hands for a snug, safe fit and a sense of smug satisfaction with your muscular ability. Then a sense of shame for your freakish Popeye-like forearms.
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Old 11-30-07, 07:14 PM   #88
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2 just learned tips...............

I stripped out the threads on a crank by using a puller before removing the crank nut (duh!) Luckily I had not threaded the puller all the way to the end of the threads. However the "plunger" of the puller would not allow me to reach the remaining threads. I forced (reversed) the plunger out of the tool thereby removing the little cup on the end of the plunger. I threaded the tool back into the crank (carefully) and was able to pull the crank.

Get a cheap set of "E" clip pliers. "E" clips are the little flat spring steel clips that snap into a groove cut around a shaft; normally to hold a gear or piece of linkage in place. These will replace almost ALL of the expensive one-of-kind spanners you need. You make break a few but you can buy bunches for the cost of one "name brand" spanner.....

Last edited by thumpic@yahoo.c; 12-02-07 at 11:04 AM.
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Old 12-03-07, 07:23 PM   #89
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Get a cheap set of "E" clip pliers. "E" clips are the little flat spring steel clips that snap into a groove cut around a shaft; normally to hold a gear or piece of linkage in place. These will replace almost ALL of the expensive one-of-kind spanners you need. You make break a few but you can buy bunches for the cost of one "name brand" spanner.....
By "'E' clip pliers" I assume you mean a snap ring plier. I just put new bearing balls into a freewheel assembly and used a thin nose plier as a spanner wrench. The points of the plier were small enough to fit into the depressions in the flange. The tips of the handles were wide enough that I got pretty good leverage on tightening with both hands. A thin nose plier is also sturdier than my snap ring pliers and can torque the retainer more firmly.
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Old 12-04-07, 11:53 AM   #90
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Using a tire tool for installation can often lead to a pinched or cut tube. Roll it on with the balls of your hands for a snug, safe fit...
This works with my 700C x 23 tires, but not with my 27 x 1 1/4 tires. The 27" tires are hard to get on even with tire irons. I just try to push the tube into place well in advance of where the tire bead is crossing over the rim and hope I do not pinch the tube.
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Old 12-04-07, 01:54 PM   #91
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When in doubt clean, lube and adjust.
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Old 12-04-07, 09:31 PM   #92
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Can a 32H hub be laced to a 36H hub?


NO!
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Old 12-06-07, 08:30 AM   #93
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The sound of a tire lightly rubbing something once every revolution may be caused by loss of tire pressure due to a slow leak in the tube, especially if all moving parts were quiet for the first few miles of the ride. You might stop to look for the area that is being rubbed, but find nothing because the shape of the tire is different without your weight on the bike.

I like to set my odometer by measuring the distance the bike travels in one revolution of the wheel while my weight is on the bike. I have noticed I ought take a new measurement after changing tires. Sometimes the diameter of the new tires is just a bit different, even though they are the same size.

Back in the early 1970s Schwinn sold a tube of white grease for bicycle bearings. Auto parts stores sell a lubriplate grease for use during engine assembly. It is a light grease very much like the grease Schwinn sold.

Last edited by twobikes; 12-06-07 at 09:02 AM. Reason: add yet another idea
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Old 12-10-07, 09:38 AM   #94
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I have been riding in hours of darkness a lot lately. When oncoming drivers do not dim their headlamps, it can nearly blind me. I make my bike headlight flash by covering it with my hand and removing my hand. After half-a-dozen flashes, they always dim their lights (so far).
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Old 12-13-07, 11:44 AM   #95
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I had several bikes with shifters that were malfunctioning. The head wrench at our local performance shop told me to use the degreaser they sell and to flood the shifters and keep working with them. So far I have saved a set of shimano 600 STI shifters and several sets of rapidfire mtn bike shifters with this method. Well worth a try before you buy new shifters.
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Old 12-14-07, 03:40 PM   #96
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This is the tool I use to put the expensive Shimano grease in ball bearings,

and not all over the place.

Last edited by Berre; 12-24-07 at 04:18 AM.
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Old 12-14-07, 03:45 PM   #97
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Wow, that pic came out BIG!
BTW you fill it up by extracting the piston. Grease is too thick to suck up like it would suck fluids.
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Old 12-14-07, 04:07 PM   #98
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Wow, that pic came out BIG!
BTW you fill it up by extracting the piston. Grease is too thick to suck up like it would suck fluids.
What if you heat the grease first? Like setting it in a bowl of hot water for a few minutes?
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Old 12-14-07, 04:36 PM   #99
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What if you heat the grease first? Like setting it in a bowl of hot water for a few minutes?
I fill it up with the piston removed in less than a minute.
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Old 12-17-07, 10:53 AM   #100
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have trouble getting rear wheels in frame? file the corners on the front of the rear dropouts.,wait till you see how easy it is to get that wheel in and out!
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