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  1. #1
    Senior Member Velocivixen's Avatar
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    1974-1975 Motobecane Grand Jubile, 1985 Sekai Bigfoot, 1985 Nishiki Riviera Mixte, 2011 Surly Cross Check, 1986 Fuji Sundance, 1992 Specizlized Hardrock, 1987 Miyata One Twelve Mixte.
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    Routine Maintenance (Annual Overhaul) or As Needed?

    I'm curious about this. How many of you do things like repacking headset/bottom bracket/wheel hubs, cables/housings, etc. on a regular schedule? I ask because I was going to install my first headset on my 1985 Sekai Bigfoot (had a modern 1" threaded on hand), took it apart and measured and sure enough it was JIS. No biggie. The original races were pristine and I had put new grease & ball bearings in there when I first bought it last October. Since I had it apart though I figured I might as well go ahead and clean it all (ultrasonic - my favorite helper) and new grease, adjust, etc. Then I cleaned the chain, removed the crank and put it into the ultrasonic cleaner (had to rotate several times), checked the bb, etc. So I thought, "OK, this is like "winterizing" the bike" - getting all the important things ready to go. I also shortened the shifter cables/housings because I lowered the quill stem quite a bit. Now, other than winter fenders, I'm set.

    So? Regularly or as needed?

  2. #2
    Senior Member SJX426's Avatar
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    1972 Motobecane Le Champion (totaled), 1973 Bottecchia Giro d'Italia, 1983 Colnago Superissimo, 1984 Trek 610, 1994 Burley Duet, 1988(?) Pinarello Tre Cime, 88 Masi Gran Corsa (Frame), 1991 Pinarello Montello, 1997 Specialized RockHopper
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    Great question @Velocivixen ! I have been wondering the same. I replaced the cranks on my 83 Colnago this last weekend with some I purchased from @Bianchigirll and noticed a bit of black dirt on the grease from the BB. First thought was that I should check but I don't think I have 1000 miles on the bike since I last had it apart.

    I don't think it would be a time period if you don't ride it regularly. What I mean is that if you ride a bike all the time it would make sense to do it more often than if you didn't ride it frequently. Of course, environmental exposure can make a difference too. As you might expect, the Colnago doesn't get ridden in the rain like the RockHopper does. In any case, I think I have just convinced myself that it should be related more to milage than time and then modified by exposure to extreme environmental conditions. TMTC (that's my two cents).

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    I just check each maintenance area by feel. For example, during cleaning, I'll pull the cranks off (I have to do this anyway to clean the chain rings) and then turn the bottom bracket axle with my fingers. If it feels or sounds gritty--it's time for a repack. If not, I just move on.

  4. #4
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    When it needs it. On my most ridden bikes, complete tear down every couple/three years, sooner if something needs it. On my seldom ridden bikes, when I purchased them.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

    "Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
    RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
    _Nicodemus

    "Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
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    Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
    _krazygluon

  5. #5
    Ding! Bandera's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velocivixen View Post
    So? Regularly or as needed?
    The answer is: It depends.

    For a bike that is ridden in competition an annual complete overhaul is cheap insurance to prevent a DNF, winter/off season is the best time to do a thorough and conscientious job.
    If one is putting the time and effort into training put some of the same into squaring away the machine as well.

    For a commuter or training bike routine maintenance should catch when a partial or complete overhaul is necessary. My FG is partially disassembled today to replace brake cables, bar tape and a rear tire. Noted the need when it was up in the stand for a chain lube.

    -Bandera
    '74 Raleigh International - '77 Trek TX900FG - '92 Vitus 979 - '10 Merckx EMX-3- '11 Soma Stanyan

  6. #6
    aka Tom Reingold noglider's Avatar
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    I've owned my McLean since 1983, and I can't remember the last time I took apart the four main bearings (BB, headset, and hubs). It might be over 25 years. I now have the balls and grease to do it, and I feel like it's going to happen any day now, any week, any month. Well, eventually.

    I really should do it more often. Maybe every year or two. Of course, some say much more often than that, but seeing how well some bikes survive with this level of neglect, I think I'm OK, especially since mine are very high quality bearings. BB is Sugino Mighty. Headset is Shimano 600. Hubs are Campagnolo Record.
    You don't read my signature anyway, do you?

    Tom Reingold, noglider@pobox.com
    Residences: West Village, New York City and High Falls, NY
    Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

  7. #7
    Wood David Newton's Avatar
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    A bottom bracket grease job should last several years, unless you ride in wet, dirty conditions regularly. Same with the head set.
    I like motor oil, when I put some in either of our cars, I upend the empty bottle over my bike oil bottle, and get a bit. Then I drip it on my chain every month or two, and wipe it dry with a rag. Same with brake moving parts, hubs and pedals.
    http://davidnewtonguitars.squarespace.com/

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