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Seanyjonny 06-21-09 02:51 PM

Bike chain messing up
Ive been having a problem lately with my bike chain messing up whenever i apply force to speed up. It makes like a clicking sound like your switching gears and sometimes my foot slides off the pedal and hits the ground or something to that effect. Any suggestions on what the problem is or what i can do to fix it?

bkaapcke 06-21-09 03:02 PM

Sounds like it's time for a new chain and cassette. bk

rumrunn6 06-21-09 06:23 PM

try cleaning and lubing and look for a frozen link. use rubber gloves if you have them and plenty of paper towel. a step stool for your butt will be helpful too. next thing to check is cable adjustment. if all that is OK then worn chain can causes skipping. but it doesn't sound like skipping.

Seanyjonny 06-22-09 09:55 AM

Yeah im a beginner so i dont really know all too much what your talking about lol sorry, but about the cable (this is a Mtn. Bike btw), there are three cables, 2 leading from the two gear things (the 1-3 gears and 1-7 gears) and 1 leading from the back brake handle to the frame infront of the seat, the one from the 1-3 gears are frayed and hanging off PAST where its supposed to go in, some wires are going in like normal and some are sticking out past it and those 1-3 gears no longer work and its stuck in the 1st one, so if that is affecting my problem or not i dont know.

Seanyjonny 06-22-09 09:59 AM

This isnt MY bike but this is the same kind i have, Schwinn Sidewinder, but this might help my description.

rumrunn6 06-22-09 10:06 AM

well when a cable goes into a connector, it also comes out the other side. Since the part of the cables that is sticking out the other side is just extra - then it's OK if it gets frayed.

it sounds like the bike needs an experienced hand to give it a quick overhaul. sometimes a friendly bike shop can help you without making you feel stupid or charging you a lot of money. depends on the neighborhood. you might be better off finding a community center that has a used bike shop where they fix up old bikes and then sell them. you might also check your local "craigslist" in the bike section, you can post an ad looking for an amateur bike mechanic.

you can get specific information here about specific things, and it helps to show pictures. then with some new information and some simple tools you can try to make some simple adjustments. sounds like you're in for a learning curve, but if you're game, this is the place.

usually when we find old bikes the shifting and braking needs adjustment or repair. adjustment usually only requires simple tools like screw drivers or allen wrenches. repair may involve new brake pads, cables and cable housings (tubes the cable runs through). also lubrication can make things work better. I'll bet the bike is old and was left out in the rain and some parts are frozen by rust. it probably needs a good cleaning and lubrication, and maybe a few small parts.

if you're into it, this could be the right bike at the right time for you to learn from - you tube has lots of bike repair videos - check that out too!

Esteban32696 06-23-09 05:32 AM

Originally Posted by Seanyjonny (Post 9145018)
This isnt MY bike but this is the same kind i have, Schwinn Sidewinder, but this might help my description.

I have worked on several of these Schwinn bikes. While not a great bike, [ about $150 new ] they are OK for a person to ride occassionally, without any serious offroad work. It sounds like it does need a good " tune-up," & possible chain & cassette. [ rear sprockets ] Since you aren't familiar with bikes, you will either have to pay some shop to repair it, get a knowledgable friend, or watch some of the repair videos & get dirty. Good time to start learning.

FBinNY 06-23-09 06:48 AM

It doesn't matter if the cable is frayed where it hangs loose after the pinch bolt on the dreailleurs, bit if there's frayed cable near the levers, or along the length, it will affect the shifting performance.

Other things that could cause your problem are poor derailleur adjustment, and/or a worn chain and cassette. Check your chain for wear as follows: Lean your bike against a wall in a corner with the front wheel against the other wall. While pressing firmly on the pedals to tension the chain use a 12" ruler to measure a section of the chain.

On a new chain the pins will line up evenly every half inch, but as chains wear, each pin will be a bit beyond where it should be with the pin at the 12" mark visibly beyond the mark. If it's less than 1/16" beyond you're OK, more than 1/8" it's definitely toast, possibly your cassette too. Between 1/16" and 1/8" is a gray area and a judgement call, but your cassette is probably OK if you don't wait much longer to replace the chain.

Given that you're new to this, I suggest doing the chain check first, and then visiting a good LBS, preferably a smaller one run by active cyclists, and having them check and adjust the bike, and hopefully show you the basic adjustments you should do yourself from then on. Expect to pay, but from then on, you can start doing the simple stuff yourself, and building your knowledge over time.

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