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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 05-23-11, 03:17 AM   #1
ice109
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mechanic starter set

hi everybody! (first post)

i'm a peace corps volunteer in africa (uganda) and i ride a specialized hardrock. no clue what year it is and the only identifiers on it are "double butted 4130" and "crmo chromium molybdenum."

as you can guess riding here is tough; dusty dirt roads, terrible pavement, lots of mud when it rains, and lots of rain when it rains. i'd like to be able to do repairs on the bike myself because ugandan bike mechanics, from what i've seen, tend to just bang on the bike with a hammer. to that end i'm looking to get a set of tools that will enable me to do the following repairs

repack bearings in the headset
repack bearings in the bottom bracket
repack bearings in the wheel hubs, front and rear
replace the cassette or set of cogs in the rear note
replace the chain rings
replace the chain

i anticipate having to repack bearings often because of the dust and mud i ride in. most of these things i've done at one time or another at the local bike shop when i was in college so i'm confident i can actually perform the repairs (and where i'm not i can google). so i'd like some advice on a starter set of tools that i'll have sent to me (weight isn't a big deal). i could google what the particular tool for each job is called and then search for it but i figured someone might have a good catch-all solution. maybe an adjustable flat-wrench? that'd be awesome. also i was hoping someone could maybe tell me a way to figure out what size flat wrenches and etc i need for my bike without taking it apart and using calipers. though i'm considering getting a decent set of wrenches so i can help other volunteers do these repairs...

i have 2 of those little repair kits that people usually put in saddle pouches that have a few allen wrenches, a few spoke wrenches, and one of them has a chain tool (but it's not a good one) hence i can (and do) perform basic preventative maintenance like oiling the brake cables and replacing break pads.

note can someone tell me a quick way to figure out whether i have a cassette or cog set? i know on a cog set the smallest cog is a locking ring but i don't know how to recognize that.

cross-posted at adventurecycling so i can get as much advice as possible so plz don't be mad

Last edited by ice109; 05-23-11 at 03:24 AM.
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Old 05-23-11, 04:38 AM   #2
Kimmo
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Have look here and you should be able to tell us what year it is.

Set of allen keys
Spoke wrench
Cone spanners (prolly 14/15mm - maybe get a cheap vernier to find out what you need)
Headset wrench if threaded headset
Chain tool
Crank puller
Chainwhip
Cassette tool
Um... I think that's about it.

Check out the wisdom of Sheldon about your hub.

It prolly looks like this:


See those notches poking out from the outside edge of the lockring? That's the most obvious freehub giveaway, aside from the bulge inside the right flange on older road hubs.

Last edited by Kimmo; 05-23-11 at 04:58 AM.
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Old 05-23-11, 04:49 AM   #3
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Read the stickys, they contain all the info you need.

For what you say needs doing, you look to be replacing most of the bike, would it be worth looking at what the locals ride. or replacing with another bike in better condition? you don't say anything about avalibility of parts / tools where you are, so guessing you are having them shipped in?

For the cassette / cogs, most likely a freehub cassette, it (the lockring) should say Shimano Hyperglide or IG glide on it. Unlikely to be a freewheel, as only the late 80's hardrocks only these (unless changed by a user)
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Old 05-23-11, 11:38 AM   #4
ice109
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimmo View Post
Have look here and you should be able to tell us what year it is.
http://www.bikepedia.com/QuickBike/B...r-Mo&Type=bike

this is the but the pic is wrong (though the written specs are right) because the bike has front suspension.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimmo View Post
Set of allen keys
Spoke wrench
Cone spanners (prolly 14/15mm - maybe get a cheap vernier to find out what you need)
Headset wrench if threaded headset
Chain tool
Crank puller
Chainwhip
Cassette tool
Um... I think that's about it.
are the brands and specs on that page particular enough for me to be able to buy the tools i need specifically for my bike or no? i'd google around but i'm paying by the megabyte over here.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimmo View Post
Check out the wisdom of Sheldon about your hub.

It prolly looks like this:


See those notches poking out from the outside edge of the lockring? That's the most obvious freehub giveaway, aside from the bulge inside the right flange on older road hubs.
so i pulled off the rear wheel this morning and found notches like that. but you say freehub and so does the guy below but the picture makes me think i have a freewheel? and the specs say 7 speed freewheel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimc101 View Post
Read the stickys, they contain all the info you need.
i really would but as i mentioned above i can't really afford it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimc101 View Post
For what you say needs doing, you look to be replacing most of the bike, would it be worth looking at what the locals ride. or replacing with another bike in better condition? you don't say anything about avalibility of parts / tools where you are, so guessing you are having them shipped in?
i'm not replacing, hopefully, anything. i imagine the bearing races will get full of mud and dirt really soon and i'll need to clean then out. that's it. and none of this needs to be done yet because the bike is in good condition over all, it's the nicest bike i've seen since getting here. the locals ride 100lb singlespeed beasts that they use to transport 100lb sacks of cassava or coal 30km a day. i considered getting one and then i hefted it to get a feel for the weight and, i **** you not, it was so ungainly i almost fell over with it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimc101 View Post
For the cassette / cogs, most likely a freehub cassette, it (the lockring) should say Shimano Hyperglide or IG glide on it. Unlikely to be a freewheel, as only the late 80's hardrocks only these (unless changed by a user)
the specs above say freewheel and from the looks of it it's a freewheel. the only thing the lockring says is made in china (so i guess that cogset/cassette is aftermarket).
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