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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 06-24-07, 03:39 PM   #1
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Regular and scheduled maintenance

Here's a question I posted in the Commuting thread that someone suggested I post here instead and makes perfect sense

I always do a quick check of the brakes before every ride and the tire pressure a couple of times a week and that's pretty much it. But in the medium/long run is there a checkup list to follow or guidelines? Like for car maintenance, at 5000mi change the oil, 6000mi change the breaks, 7250mi change the engine etc.

Something in the line of after 250mi oil the chain, 500mi change the break pads, 1000mi upgrade the derailleur, 1500mi change bike? Of course I'm kidding here but you get the idea. Or more like each month "check x" etc. To find potential problems I need look for them before there are symptoms; but where, when and what to look for?

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Old 06-24-07, 04:38 PM   #2
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Generally you can get away with only repairing/replacing parts after they've worn out or are displaying actual problems (e.g, loose bearings).

The only exeception I can think of is the drivetrain. If you keep an eye on your chain wear and replace it as soon as it starts to stretch, you can save some money by not having to buy a new rear cassette for 2 or 3 chains. I'd keep a close eye on chain wear after it's seen 1k miles.

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Old 06-24-07, 06:25 PM   #3
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There was a thread on basic maintenance recently. Click on this link. There you will also find links to pages advising what you need to do.

A lot depends on the way your bike is made. For example, if you have a carbon seat post and aluminum frame, you ought use special grease on the seat post or remove and wipe it periodically to prevent the two from eventually bonding together. If your bottom bracket has sealed bearings service is different than if it is an older design with balls and races that can be opened, cleaned, and greased.

When I got a new bike I got a copy of Todd Downs' Bicycling Guide to Complete Bicycle Maintenance and Repair and I read it cover to cover. That may not be necessary, but I am glad I did it.
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