Quote Originally Posted by will dehne
I belong to a club: "If it isn't broke don't fix it."
That being said, I found out that changing gears is much better if you do basic maintenance to the chain. That consists of wiping it down with WD 40, lubricate and wiping excess lubricant off. Take 5-10 minutes and I do it often and definitely after rain.
BTW, I also check for chain stretch while I am at it.

You're the first one That has mentioned the Chain stretch on this forum. I suppose it comes with experience, but look at the bike often enough- as you do- and you do find the bits that need adjusting. On the chain cleaning- Offroad I clean the chain after every ride using a chain cleaner and then wash out with WD40. Then wipe and let it drain and then oil. On the road bike- I have not done a great many miles yet but I used the chain cleaner at 100 miles, and no dirt was in the chain at all. Just done it at 300 and I suppose it is the dust from a couple of trails I have done and the liquid turned black and a lot of gritty residue in the bottom of the tool. It looked clean enough, but looks can be deceptive.

On the mountain bike- I set up a regular maintenance programme. After every ride it is cleaned and checked for tightness and loose parts. Then ride one- I oil the cables. Ride two I check the wheels for true and bearing play. Ride 3 it is headset and strip and regrease on this now. ride 4 is check the complete drivechain and brakes. Then back to ride one. Then once a year it is completely strip and rebuild the bike. Same routine goes on the Tandem and most of the time it only takes 30 minutes or so so do the checking/ service. Now I have the road bike, my problem will be what did each bike have on its last mini-service so I suppose it is time to start keeping records of what was done last time and what parts were changed.