Went to the LBS this morning and there was a Shabby looking TCR that looked the business. Closer look and it was not for sale- it was awaiting collection by the owner after a repair. It really did look secondhand but the gear on the bike was all top of the range. While waiting to be served the customer came in and paid for the repair and went away.
Apparantly- the problem was that the bike stopped changing gear. The owner had bought the bike a couple of years ago and is a good club road racer. He had not done any maintenance on the bike in all that time other than oil the chain and change the tyres. The reason it did not change gear was that he had broken the internals of the Brifter. That had broken because the cable had siezed solid in the outer. It had been getting stiff for a couple of months and finally when the cable siezed- he just put real pressure on the lever and something went ping.
Don't know about the rest of you- but bike maintenance and cleaning is done on a regular basis by me. I have a system in that everything is checked on a regular basis. Comes from The mountain bike I suppose- but clean the bike down-and various parts of the bike are checked on a rota basis. After ride 1- cables are checked- and oiled. Ride 2 and brakes and wheels are checked- ride 3 and it is the headset where I take out the forks and clean and regrease the headset(Not done that often on the road bikes though) and ride 5 and both deraillers are thoroughly cleaned and checked. Then there are the points picked up on the regular cleaning like frayed cables- loose bolts or paint chips. Week 4 is a bit different as This the week when the wheels come off- the frame is in the stand and the bike is polished. In doing this- all the cables are released- lubed again- and the wheels checked for true in the stand.
Regular maintenance is not hard. No major work is done except on the headset and all it is really is checking the bike over. Luckily- The road bikes do not get the use and wear taking place that the mountain bike does- so instead of being after each ride- I do this around every 100 miles- but you can reckon that at 500 miles- the whole bike and everything on it has been checked over- so I have plenty of time to get the part replaced or adjusted before I go out and have to call the sag wagon.
Basic maintenance is not difficult