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Old 09-01-09, 11:53 PM   #1
olegb
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When is a time for a tune-up

How do you determine when is a time for a tune-up? Do you do it every X months, or just based on miles and usage? Are there more critical parts than others?

Thanks

Oleg B
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Old 09-02-09, 12:29 AM   #2
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Tune up? As needed.

I tend to check bolts, oil things, check cables, brake pad alignment, and inspect the frame at least twice a month.

Tune up wise, if something feels off, I fix it. Most things that need sorted become obvious when I do my general maintenance.

Here's a couple links. I'm sure you could find plenty more on google, as well as guides on how to do what work should be done.
http://www.seattlebiketours.org/memb...intenance.html
http://www.finalkick.com/index.php?o...news&Itemid=50

I'd recommend getting a spreadsheet together (OpenOffice.org if you don't have an office program,) printing it out and marking it off as you go along. Set up a routine if you can.

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Old 09-02-09, 05:12 AM   #3
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I take frame bolts out and put antiseize on them twice a year, to avoid having to use a torch to get them out as I have in the past.

I top my tires up once a week or so, lube the chain when it's getting really dirty or rusty (it's impossible for me to keep a chain clean on my route), and replace it and brake pads when they're worn out.

Other than that, I just fix stuff when it's broken.
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Old 09-02-09, 05:17 AM   #4
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Some maintenance becomes obvious and is done when needed. Although I am still learning how to do my own repairs I do bring my bikes in once a year to a LBS for a tune up.
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Old 09-02-09, 06:24 AM   #5
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twice year full self checkup, clean, and lube every moving part, every nut snugged up, check spokes and tire true (easy once I tried it), gear shift adjust if needed. Every week tire fill, check quick release (bad experience). If I notice the bike getting lots of squeaks I do a full check of nuts and spokes and quick lube, it only takes 10 min.

Learning how to adjust the gear shift took me an afternoon. I haven't been in for a checkup since I bought the bike in '97

Everything you need to know is on the net, just give it a try. Kinda makes me feel like a kid working on my banana seat bike. Maybe I'll get some extended forks for the chopper look.

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Old 09-02-09, 06:27 AM   #6
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I'm with ItsJustMe: preventive maintenance, and then fix when broken. To some extent, a good PM schedule depends some on your riding habits and conditions (for example, in June when it was raining constantly I did rather more degunking and lubing than normal).
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Old 09-02-09, 08:19 AM   #7
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My bike is 5 years old and has 19000 miles on it, and the shop has never seen it since it rolled out the door. I don't think the lack of PM has hurt my bike any; every component on it that I've had to replace, the guy who sold me the replacement part on it was amazed that I'd gotten the kind of life I did out of it (this bike came with pretty much the cheapest components you can get without going to Wal*Mart crap).
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Old 09-02-09, 09:20 AM   #8
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seems like I am constantly tweaking adjustments with only rides to separate the tuneups. don't be romantic about bicycle maintenance ...
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Old 09-02-09, 10:25 AM   #9
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I think the standard bike shop tuneup that people often get doesn't amount to much more than making adjustments, adding air to the tires and lubricating the chain, cables, and pivot points. They'll also do an inspection where they may determine more involved maintenance work is required.

There's not really a prescribed maintenance interval for any of the above as far as I know although the bearings on one of my sets of wheels does have a specific maintenance interval. Checking air pressure weekly is a good practice.

There are varied opinions on how often a chain should be cleaned and lubricated. Generally I'll clean the chain when it starts running a little noisy or if it's been exposed to a lot of rain/moisture within a few week time period.

When you put air in the tires, it's also a good time to make sure your brake pads aren't too worn and the brakes are adjusted properly. If my wheels need truing, it'll be apparent when I'm adjusting my brakes.

I do a more thorough going over when the seasons change. I have a winter bike that I'll probably start doing some work on in the next month or two. My "spring, summer, fall" bike gets a complete going over in the spring.

What often happens for people that both commute and do their own maintenance is that they're riding often enough that they'll notice when things aren't right and then take appropriate action.
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Old 09-02-09, 10:34 AM   #10
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This is the maintenance schedule I try to stick to for my commuter bike:

Once a week pump up the tires

Once a month clean and lube chain

Every 2-3 months clean the entire bike, including wiping the crud off the rims (bike has rims brakes), and cleaning the entire drivetrain

Once a year replace the chain and brake pads

Every 1 1/2 to 2 years clean and repack wheel hubs and bearings in clipless pedals, replace bar tape

When I think about it, usually once every 3 months, hold the front wheel still and check that the stem doesn't slip on the steerer tube when I turn the handlebars
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Old 09-02-09, 11:07 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck G View Post
Every 2-3 months clean the entire bike, including wiping the crud off the rims (bike has rims brakes), and cleaning the entire drivetrain
Clean....the....bike.... I understand all those words, but the sentence doesn't make any sense!

It's OK, I haven't washed my car in 10 years either.
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Old 09-02-09, 11:46 AM   #12
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Although i can perform routine maintenance like adjusting cables, bolts, brakes and clean/relube the chain. I would bring the bike to my LBS for a once a year tune-up. Just in case I missed something. that happens right before riding season.
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Old 09-03-09, 08:28 AM   #13
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I wait until a few things bug me, then I go over everything or just drop it by the LBS if I'm too busy.
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Old 09-03-09, 09:02 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wunderkind View Post
I would bring the bike to my LBS for a once a year tune-up. Just in case I missed something. that happens right before riding season.
For me, riding season ends Dec 31 and starts Jan 1.
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