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New Bike: First Problem.

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

New Bike: First Problem.

Old 11-03-10, 06:40 PM
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jpgroth
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New Bike: First Problem.

So I bought a bike a week ago, first bike since 6th grade, I'm now a j***or in college. Anyways it's a road bike, got it for $80. It's a Suteki Track 10. It's my first road bike so I'm trying to get the hang of everything, adjusting and all.

Today while riding up a hill I shifted into a lower gear? Higher/Lower whichever has littler resistance and is easier on the legs uphill. I shifted into the gear and the wire that runs down the frame that's connected to the gearing shifter and the gears snapped. It's the wire that controls the bigger sprocket. Just wondering how I go about fixing something like this. I wrench on my car all the time, so I wanna do it myself.



It connects here to the top of the bike, and the lever closest to us, on the left obviously doesn't have resistance anymore.




And then I need new tires. Trying to figure out which tire is best and where I can the best deal. I'm commuting around a college campus, the roads aren't the greatest.. it's Wisconsin. If someone can point me in the right direction that would be very much appreciated.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-03-10, 06:46 PM
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Easy fix. Just get a new cable and run it through the housing to the front derailleur.

Cheap tires from performancebike.com will work for commuting. Make sure you get the right size (700 or 27" tires)
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Old 11-03-10, 06:48 PM
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You broke your front derailleur cable. You need a new one. Then you have to pull the old one out, starting at that lever by the handlebars. Loosen the screw that attaches the other piece of the old one to the front derailleur, then thread in the new one, following the same path as the old one. Lastly, google front-derailleur adjustment and get it all adjusted. You should attach the cable at the bottom end while the lever is fully upright.

Oh, and the position of those shift levers is dangerous. But I don't want to derail your thread.

What size are the current tires/wheels?
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Old 11-03-10, 06:48 PM
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This fix is simpler than more modern shifting mechanisms. You need to replace the 'wire' also called a cable. With the gear lever pointing straight up, route cable along the same path(thru lever first) the old one is kind of still sitting in, but don't look for identical left and right (front and rear gear cable paths). Once you've secured the other end to the front shifting thingy (derailleur) you'll have to play a bit with the mechanism to get it shifting well again. Take some time to inspect a couple of adjustment screws on that front derailleur - they control the extend the thing moves side-to-side so you don't overshift and drop the chain. In a couple of tries you'll visually figure it out.
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Old 11-03-10, 06:49 PM
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waay too much help on this forum...
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Old 11-03-10, 06:51 PM
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Should we mock him mercilessly instead?

I would, but I'm a noob, so I feel it isn't my place.
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Old 11-03-10, 06:52 PM
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Originally Posted by grimslade View Post
Should we mock him mercilessly instead?

I would, but I'm a noob, so I feel it isn't my place.
No but I should have realized that by the time I finished typing there would be 3 responses.
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Old 11-03-10, 07:05 PM
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Alrighty. Thanks for all the help. You can thread jack if it's helping me out. So do tell me why the derailleurs are in a dangerous position.

Should I order this cable online or just get it from a local bike shop?

The tires say Panaracer 27x1 1/18.
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Old 11-03-10, 07:07 PM
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Establish a relationship with a local bike shop. It's worth it.
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Some sort of pithy irrelevant one-liner should go here.
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Old 11-03-10, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by jpgroth View Post
Alrighty. Thanks for all the help. You can thread jack if it's helping me out. So do tell me why the derailleurs are in a dangerous position.

Should I order this cable online or just get it from a local bike shop?

The tires say Panaracer 27x1 1/18.
The shift levers are the dangerously positioned component. It appears as if they're not evenly inline with your stem. Along with a new cable, you might think about taking a look at that housing.
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Old 11-03-10, 07:22 PM
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Cables are cheap. If you don't mind the wait you can order online for cheaper than bike shop.

Since you're going to be changing cables, I recommend changing the brake cables. You don't want those snapping. Also, you may want to change the housing since they are probably so old.

www.parktool.com is where I learned how to do a lot of things on the bike. It's a good resource.

If you're going to get new tires make sure they're 27" tires (first number). The second number refers to width. Wider tires means slower speeds but more comfort. Narrow tires mean more speed but less comfort. If you're commuting 27 x 1 1/4" or something around there. It's a good balance between speed and comfort for commuting.
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Old 11-03-10, 07:41 PM
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Originally Posted by jpgroth View Post
So I bought a bike a week ago, first bike since 6th grade, I'm now a j***or in college. Anyways it's a road bike, got it for $80. It's a Suteki Track 10. It's my first road bike so I'm trying to get the hang of everything, adjusting and all.

Today while riding up a hill I shifted into a lower gear? Higher/Lower whichever has littler resistance and is easier on the legs uphill. I shifted into the gear and the wire that runs down the frame that's connected to the gearing shifter and the gears snapped. It's the wire that controls the bigger sprocket. Just wondering how I go about fixing something like this. I wrench on my car all the time, so I wanna do it myself.




It connects here to the top of the bike, and the lever closest to us, on the left obviously doesn't have resistance anymore.




And then I need new tires. Trying to figure out which tire is best and where I can the best deal. I'm commuting around a college campus, the roads aren't the greatest.. it's Wisconsin. If someone can point me in the right direction that would be very much appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

Not to be a bike snob but looking at that bike is just very painful. I would imagine riding it is even more so. I hope you enjoy the sport to get a more ride worthy specimen.
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Old 11-03-10, 07:57 PM
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Originally Posted by surgeonstone View Post
Not to be a bike snob but looking at that bike is just very painful. I would imagine riding it is even more so. I hope you enjoy the sport to get a more ride worthy specimen.
It's my first bike.. I like it, don't really care what others think about it. I know it's old, dirty, and needs a big tune up, but you don't need to piss on my parade. I'm new to this and trying to learn as I go along. I'm not one to give it to someone and tell em to fix and hand over money. It'll get there, I've only had it for a week and school keeps me busy as it is. If you don't have anything helpful to say.. take it somewhere else.
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Old 11-03-10, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by ptle View Post
Cables are cheap. If you don't mind the wait you can order online for cheaper than bike shop.

Since you're going to be changing cables, I recommend changing the brake cables. You don't want those snapping. Also, you may want to change the housing since they are probably so old.

www.parktool.com is where I learned how to do a lot of things on the bike. It's a good resource.

If you're going to get new tires make sure they're 27" tires (first number). The second number refers to width. Wider tires means slower speeds but more comfort. Narrow tires mean more speed but less comfort. If you're commuting 27 x 1 1/4" or something around there. It's a good balance between speed and comfort for commuting.
Thanks for the info. That helps.
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Old 11-03-10, 08:18 PM
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Originally Posted by surgeonstone View Post
Not to be a bike snob but looking at that bike is just very painful. I would imagine riding it is even more so. I hope you enjoy the sport to get a more ride worthy specimen.
dick.

OP, if you work on cars, you'll find this stuff......easy. Some people around here take minor adjustments VERY VERY seriously, and it's kinda funny to listen to if you've dropped a trans.
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Old 11-03-10, 08:24 PM
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I've bought several bikes on Craigslist for really cheap, use them for a bit, then sell them for some cash.

First thing I usually do is change out all cable housings and cables. Fresh cables not only look good, but make the bike perform a lot better. I get cables and housing very cheap at the place I work ($1 per cable, $1 per foot of housing). However, I think you can get cable sets for under $25. They usually come with the cables, housings, and some ferrules.

After that, I make sure the bike is set up properly. This involves having the drop bars rotated at the right angle, the brake levers position correctly, the stem height adjusted properly, and the seatpost/seat. Lastly, I make sure the bike is clean.

After that the bike should be good unless it needs some new parts. I like getting new bar tape, because it makes the bike feel and look good. New tires are often needed as older bikes have dry rotted tires, which are a bit unsafe to ride on. I usually don't replace the chain unless it's really bad or rusty. On my commuter, the chain has stretched a lot, but works fine. I'll wait until it breaks or looks like it's going to break.

Oh, I often repack and change the bearings in the hubs and bottom bracket. This make take some tools you don't have along with some time.

I've gotten pretty good at overhauling old bikes. It takes about 2-3 hours to clean the bike, change out all cables, setup the bike properly, and repack the hubs and bottom bracket.
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Old 11-03-10, 09:26 PM
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As suggested, I would just go ahead and replace all cables. While brake cables are more robust than shift cables (the former are put under much higher stress), they can break at the worst possible time. And, as ptle stated, you might find this to be a good time to replace the housings. With the bits of rust I see, your housings are likely rusted up inside, too. Those inverted shift housing sections above your bottom bracket look like they'd be especially prone to corroding. Stainless cables aren't much more money than the cheapest cables available.

Park Tool has good repair/maintenance info: http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help

If you do decide to replace your housings, you might have trouble cutting them cleanly if you don't have the right cutters or a rotary tool with cutoff wheel. If that's the case, you could always remove your housings and have your LBS cut new housing sections to the same length. Pick up some housing ferrules and cable tips while you're there.

Older bikes that haven't been maintained regularly sometimes have problems with frozen seat posts and quill stems. Plan on removing and greasing up both of these items in the near future. When you grease the quill stem, you want to grease up the threads and the wedge, not just the inserted quill portion. Since you work on your auto, you likely own a suitable grease. For greasing hubs and bottom brackets, you may need a different grease than you already own.
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Old 11-03-10, 09:41 PM
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Originally Posted by kudude View Post
dick.
+1

Anyway, in terms of great tires that won't give you much trouble these are my favorites:

http://bontrager.com/model/00443 <-- might not be a popular opinion but I ride on streets w/ a lot of glass and these so far have given me the least # of flats
http://www.rei.com/product/786321 <-- cheaper and I know a lot of people that like these
http://www.rei.com/product/671870 <-- IMO these aren't as good as the bontragers but I have been running them for a while without too many problems

Bottom line: you're going to start going through tires and you'll just have to figure out what works for YOU because there is no silver bullet when it comes to tires (as is the case with so many things in the bike world). You're always trading off weight for durability, etc.

Hope this helps.
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Old 11-03-10, 10:00 PM
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+1. Both the Bontrager Hardcase Lite and Conti's Ultra Gatorskin offer excellent puncture resistance and relatively long tread life. If you want to spend this much money, you could also add Schwalbe Marathon to the list. For less money, the Panaracer Pasela Tourguard (TG) is a very nice tire, though you probably won't squeak out quite as many miles as with the first tires mentioned. If you want to save a few more bucks, Panaracer also offers the Pasela in a non-TG version. These have a wire bead and lack the extra protection of the TG version. Price range for tires mentioned is about $35 to $90/set. Many here tend to buy tires online for the extra savings, but the savings you'd make with a $40 set of tires could be quickly offset with shipping charges.
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Old 11-03-10, 10:13 PM
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See, who said that the 41 is only overly helpful if the OP is a female. I think this thread is a good example that there are a lot of helpful members to newbies' questions, and not the arrogant types to tell the OP to HTFU, etc.

BTW, congrats to the OP for the new ride.
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Old 11-03-10, 10:20 PM
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Originally Posted by tuxbailey View Post
See, who said that the 41 is only overly helpful if the OP is a female. I think this thread is a good example that there are a lot of helpful members to newbies' questions, and not the arrogant types to tell the OP to HTFU, etc.

BTW, congrats to the OP for the new ride.
The OP provided pictures of his problem and strung together sentences in a coherent manner. Like many things you tend to get out of BF what you put into it.
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Old 11-03-10, 10:42 PM
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While you're at it, clean and lube the drive train, read up on which parts of the derailleurs and brake mechanisms should be lubed and do so, check your brake pads. Also, flat tires are nearly inevitable, so learn how to fix them and get the stuff you need to do it (tire levers, tube, patch kit, pump).

parktools web site is great.
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Old 11-04-10, 05:05 AM
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jp - College student, eh? Here's an alternate plan. First, get the bike running again using the above advice. Then, when you go home for Thanksgiving break, tell your parents something along the lines of "Mom/Dad, instead of getting me <whatever boring present your parents usually give you> for Christmas, how about springing for a full tune up for my bike at the local bike shop? It would make my bike so much safer." That way you could get all the new cables and housings and tires and tubes and lube and adjustments that the poor thing really needs, and your parents get the warm fuzzy we like, knowing we did something right for our kid.

Oh, and if you don't already have a helmet, see if they'll spring for that, too. Your head isn't that hard.

ETA: This is what it might've looked like new. Sweet bike! http://oldtenspeedgallery.com/owner-...teki-track-10/
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Old 11-04-10, 06:47 AM
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Originally Posted by kudude View Post
dick.
Correct.
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Old 11-04-10, 09:33 AM
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Originally Posted by surgeonstone View Post
Not to be a bike snob but looking at that bike is just very painful. I would imagine riding it is even more so. I hope you enjoy the sport to get a more ride worthy specimen.
Snob and a jerk. I imagine if he had a surgeon's salary he wouldn't have bought an $80 bike. I am sure the bike is perfect for what he intends to use it for. I think it is wonderful that he bought a used bike to commute with. More kids and adults should do it. He is also living within his means. Frankly this kid is doing everything right.
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