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Bike maintenance

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Old 07-11-18, 01:58 PM
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Adex
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Bike maintenance

Hello,
I'm new to bike related things, and I've been riding a MTB for a few years now, it's a some model of Giant, not sure which one, it is for sure about 12 years old, maybe even older, but it rides fine and I really like it, the question is, what should I replace so that I can ensure my own safety and joy? It has bullhorn handlebars and twisting shifting system, it is indeed very uncomfortable, is it possible to change that?
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Old 07-11-18, 02:22 PM
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Yea,
you can change/upgrade about any part.
Go to a Bike shop, do some shopping online
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Old 07-11-18, 02:28 PM
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Does it stop effectively? That is the primary safety concern.

Past that, are the tires in decent shape, that you won't have an unexpected failure? Are the spokes tight and uniform? All bolts torqued and wheels properly attached? Is the rear derailleur adjusted appropriately so the chain doesn't slip between the big cog and the wheel? Has any/all crash damage been inspected for issues?

If all of that is taken care of, the safety should be good. Adjusting for comfort, there are unlimited combos of things you could do.
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Old 07-11-18, 02:52 PM
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There was a problem with the front derailleur today, fixed it after looking for some videos, brakes are ok-ish, I don't know what's the brake thingy threshold, and when I have to change it. Should I replace the chain or it isn't a big issue it it isn't all rusty and stuff. f I want to change the gearshifting type, do I have to change the whole system or only the part on the handlebars? And the last question is, can you remove the rubber thing on the handlebars? Because it's worn out and super uncomfortable.
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Old 07-12-18, 02:38 AM
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What rubber thingy would that be? The answer is almost certainly yes, but I'm curious to know what you mean. If you want to go from twist shift to trigger shift you'd be replacing the handlebar grips anyway, which I suspect is the rubber thingy you mean, as without the twist shifter you'd have longer handlebar grips.

With regard to changing from twist shifter, you can probably get compatible trigger shifters. How many gears to you currently have? And what's the make and model of the rear derailleur?

You can do most things on a bike with just a set of Allen key wrenches. I've owned bikes for over 50 years, always done almost all of my own maintenance. Most of it is very easy and perfectly safe as long as you're sensible: it isn't as if you can electrocute yourself or cause an explosion and almost everything can be rescued by your local bike shop if you really get out of your depth. So roll your sleeves up and get stuck in.
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Old 07-12-18, 03:35 AM
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Originally Posted by jgwilliams View Post
What rubber thingy would that be? The answer is almost certainly yes, but I'm curious to know what you mean. If you want to go from twist shift to trigger shift you'd be replacing the handlebar grips anyway, which I suspect is the rubber thingy you mean, as without the twist shifter you'd have longer handlebar grips.

With regard to changing from twist shifter, you can probably get compatible trigger shifters. How many gears to you currently have? And what's the make and model of the rear derailleur?

You can do most things on a bike with just a set of Allen key wrenches. I've owned bikes for over 50 years, always done almost all of my own maintenance. Most of it is very easy and perfectly safe as long as you're sensible: it isn't as if you can electrocute yourself or cause an explosion and almost everything can be rescued by your local bike shop if you really get out of your depth. So roll your sleeves up and get stuck in.
The bike is '04 Giant Boulder Alu lite. And yes the rubber thingies are the handlebar grips , I'm not sure what's my exact rear derailleur, it's a shimano and a big A on the sticker, 3x7 gears, the front one's Shimano Acera X, I'd love to get trigger shifters, they look sick. Thanks in advance.
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Old 07-12-18, 03:49 AM
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Ok, I imagine the Shimano Altus shifters would probably work - perhaps someone else with more experience of MTBs could comment?

Personally I like twist shifters as you can quickly shift a number of gears. Trigger shifter generally click only one gear in one direction and about three going the other.

My mountain bike is also a Giant - an XTC 4 which I got second-hand - I think that's an '09 model. It's had quite a hard life but is doing well for me.

John
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Old 07-12-18, 04:37 AM
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Originally Posted by jgwilliams View Post
Ok, I imagine the Shimano Altus shifters would probably work - perhaps someone else with more experience of MTBs could comment?

Personally I like twist shifters as you can quickly shift a number of gears. Trigger shifter generally click only one gear in one direction and about three going the other.

My mountain bike is also a Giant - an XTC 4 which I got second-hand - I think that's an '09 model. It's had quite a hard life but is doing well for me.

John
I'm currently looking at st-ef510, I'd want to replace my v-brakes aswell because they look abit messed up, what would you recommend
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Old 07-12-18, 04:43 AM
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Yes, I should think those would work too. Can't really help with the brakes. My Giant has disk brakes and all my other bikes have dual caliper brakes. It looks like you're aiming towards the quality end of the scale, though, so anything decent should work ok.
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Old 07-12-18, 04:44 AM
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I'm thinking the bike isn't worth putting any real money into (MSRP was only $290). I would recommend just dealing with the (admittedly funky) grip-shift system, instead of jumping into the cost of headache of buying and installing new shifters and brakes. You said you were new to bike related things, and the bike currently rides fine, so I would just ride that thing into the ground, while picking up knowledge here and on you-tube, till you have a better idea of what direction you really want to go. It might work out better, at some point, to sell this bike and put the money towards something else that suits you better. Keep a close eye on your local Craigslist. Lots of people buy new bikes, then never ride them, hang them in the garage, and sell them cheap a couple years later. Make sure you're sized correctly for this bike, and any other one you might consider.
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Old 07-12-18, 02:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Brocephus View Post
I'm thinking the bike isn't worth putting any real money into (MSRP was only $290). I would recommend just dealing with the (admittedly funky) grip-shift system, instead of jumping into the cost of headache of buying and installing new shifters and brakes. You said you were new to bike related things, and the bike currently rides fine, so I would just ride that thing into the ground, while picking up knowledge here and on you-tube, till you have a better idea of what direction you really want to go. It might work out better, at some point, to sell this bike and put the money towards something else that suits you better. Keep a close eye on your local Craigslist. Lots of people buy new bikes, then never ride them, hang them in the garage, and sell them cheap a couple years later. Make sure you're sized correctly for this bike, and any other one you might consider.
trigger shifters - maybe $40 for m310's? Almost certainly available on cl, kijiji, or pinkbike used for less.
new cables if you want, likely to make things easier, maybe $10 max. I get them for $2 each, need front and rear. New grip, $5-10. We're not talking about much money, and I hate grip shifters. No way would I enjoy riding fighting with them, if the bike is otherwise in good shape, I would definitely change the shifter. No reason to change the brakes.
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Old 07-12-18, 03:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Viich View Post
trigger shifters - maybe $40 for m310's? Almost certainly available on cl, kijiji, or pinkbike used for less.
new cables if you want, likely to make things easier, maybe $10 max. I get them for $2 each, need front and rear. New grip, $5-10. We're not talking about much money, and I hate grip shifters. No way would I enjoy riding fighting with them, if the bike is otherwise in good shape, I would definitely change the shifter. No reason to change the brakes.
Yeah, fair point. If the guy digs the bike and it ain;t thrashed, then why not, it looks like he can get out of those grip-shifters pretty painlessly.
Out of curiosity I took a look around, and JensonUSA has the deal on those shifters (brand new) for $9.99 each, but figure somehwere shy of $30 after shipping., for both.
https://www.jensonusa.com/Shimano-M310-7-Speed-Shift-Lever-Black-7-Speed-Right?pt_source=googleads&pt_medium=cpc&pt_campaign=shopping_us&pt_keyword=&gclid=Cj0KCQjw-JvaBRDGARIsAFjqkkpoCv1qZ53Od9XUE-LFkmMO0BCqgfRw5nxBOrC8074sIkbWizGCqrsaAmLxEALw_wcB

But, these two USA-based ebay vendors have the right shifter, (with cable) for under $12 delivered, which is probably unbeatable.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/USA-3x8-Speed-Shift-Lever-Shifter-Bike-Bicycle-Parts-for-Shimano-Acera-SL-M310/192540661423?hash=item2cd45156af%3Ag%3AEokAAOSw2VFa-kWO&var=492641112188&_sacat=0&_nkw=shimano+m310+shifter&_from=R40&rt=nc&_trksid=m570.l1313

https://www.ebay.com/itm/US-3x8-Spee...0/123035831002

Oddly, the left shifters are a bit more, but not hard to find.

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Old 07-13-18, 06:10 AM
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Well, I live in Lithuania, so all of those deals are kinda irrelevant, thanks for all your help, BUT, I found a 2001 Giant TCR team on my local craigslist in good shape for 120 euro, it's MSRP was 4000 bucks, is it a huge bargain or I'm overreacting, I mean, I could resell it for thrice the price or so if it does cost that much
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Old 07-13-18, 08:56 AM
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Too good to be true usually ins't ... be careful when people sell €3500 bikes for €120 .... not harm checking it out but i would go over every inch of the bike before i even thought about buying it. There must be a reason the guy is charging so little.
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Old 07-13-18, 09:37 AM
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Can't send photos of it. It does look legit, I checked out the derailleur and it looks almost the same as the original one. What's the chance it's a real deal?
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Old 07-13-18, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Does it stop effectively? That is the primary safety concern.

Past that, are the tires in decent shape, that you won't have an unexpected failure? Are the spokes tight and uniform? All bolts torqued and wheels properly attached? Is the rear derailleur adjusted appropriately so the chain doesn't slip between the big cog and the wheel? Has any/all crash damage been inspected for issues?

If all of that is taken care of, the safety should be good. Adjusting for comfort, there are unlimited combos of things you could do.

Great list! Bravo!
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Old 07-13-18, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Adex View Post
Well, I live in Lithuania, so all of those deals are kinda irrelevant, thanks for all your help, BUT, I found a 2001 Giant TCR team on my local craigslist in good shape for 120 euro, it's MSRP was 4000 bucks, is it a huge bargain or I'm overreacting, I mean, I could resell it for thrice the price or so if it does cost that much

This might have something to do with why it's so cheap:
https://www.giant-bicycles.com/us/ne...k-recall/11382

Flaws in carbon components are sometimes invisible until they fail catastrophically, so I'd almost bet the seller knows something shady about this bike's past.

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Old 07-13-18, 10:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Adex View Post
Should I replace the chain or it isn't a big issue it it isn't all rusty and stuff.
If you know someone who has a chain checker or you can buy one, it's a very cheap tool and a quick check to see if its worn, and if it is replace it. Failing that, if it's skipping when you're riding--you'll usually hear a sort of clunk and the pedals will suddenly jerk forward like something broke--replace the chain and probably the cassette as well. Chances are that if the chain got that far worn, the cassette is also messed up, and when you put the new chain on the old cassette, it might even mesh worse.
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