6 Bike Repair Mistakes Every Cyclist Should Avoid

– I have lost count of the number of hours that I’ve wasted over
the last 20 or so years I’ve been working on my
bikes through time saving exercises that ended up becoming the most mind blowingly irritating jobs imaginable. Made all worse by the fact
they were caused entirely by me and were completely avoidable. Don’t make the same mistakes. Watch this video. Seized seatposts, ughh. It’s very easy to forget
about your seatpost. You may well not ever
really need to move it. But if you eventually do,
you could well find that you well can’t, basically. And that’s because seatposts
can real quickly become seized into frames, no matter what the material either side is made from. And it can actually go
one further than seizing. The two carts can be
chemically bonded together. Particularly if it’s aluminum
next to carbon fiber. And that is via a galvanic reaction. You can generally remove stuck seat posts. We’ve actually got a video
showing you just how. But I’ll warn you, you will probably need to sacrifice your seatpost
in order to do it. So rather than go through
all that irritation and expense, do one simple job. And that is remove your seatpost, put a layer of grease on it before putting it back into place. And if it’s a carbon
post, with carbon frame you want to try using a
fiber grip product instead. Getting the right saddle height, again. Now this one might bother
some of you more than others. But it definitely bugs me. If you ever need to remove
your seatpost for any reason, then getting it back at
exactly the right place can drive you nuts. You’re out riding, and it
feels a fraction too high, or it fractionally too low. No matter how many times you move it, no matter how many times you measure it, it still feels wrong. But there is a quick fix. All you got to do is put
a piece of electrical tape around your seat post just
where it touches the frame. That way, no matter how many
times you remove the post to make sure that it’s
not seizing obviously, you’ll know that it always goes back in exactly the right place. Rounding bolt heads. Stripping bolts so that
you can’t get them out can be really, really annoying, and lead to hours of faffing
around trying to remove them if it was even possible
in the first place. Now basically, sometimes
there’s nothing you can do about it, they just get stripped. But most of the time, it’s preventable. To do it, we need a two pronged attack. Firstly we need to prepare
the threads of the bolt to make sure that we can
actually undo it when we need to. So it might be just a layer of grease, it might be a thread locking compound. But either way, most bolts
will need some kind of prep. Secondly when it then
comes to either tightening or loosening your bolts,
use a good quality tool. And remember that worn tools wear bolts. Lost internal cables. Internal cables are cropping
up on more and more bikes and at lower and lower price points. Which is great, because
they look super cool. However, if you’re not careful they can actually drive you insane. If you remove a cable without taking steps to help to rethread it before you do so, then you could end up
losing hours of your life. So consider this a timely
reminder before you do it. When you go to remove a
cable, take a little tube, thread it over it through the frame, so that when you then
finally remove the cable, the tube is left in place as a guide to help with the next one. Stuck pedals. Taking your pedals off can
be surprisingly annoying and surprisingly painful as well if you’re not careful. Mainly, it’s just technique based. So take a little bit of time
before actually taking them off to make sure the allen
key or the wrench is in a position so that you’re not
going to skin your knuckles when it suddenly loosens. And if the pedals are on too tight, consider getting your
foot involved as well. But then harking back
to our previous point, make sure that you grease the threads of your pedal axles before you put them in in the first place. That way you can avoid having
them seize into your cranks. And also, don’t over tighten them. 35 newton meters will do the trick if you’ve got a torque wrench. Putting things together
in the wrong order. Most bike maintenance jobs are
relatively straightforward. You can take things apart, put them back together relatively simply. But there are a few jobs
that are more complicated. Now I’m thinking mainly
bottom brackets here but also headsets to a certain extent. What spacer goes where, and where on earth did that flippin seal come from? Cue hours spent trying
different permutations even when you had the
instructions in front of you. Now it’s not exactly a hack, this but it is definitely a timely reminder that if you just spend 10
seconds keeping a track of how things come apart,
either taking photos or literally just lining
them up on your work top. Then you’ll be able to put
things back together again very simply and save
yourself a lot of time. Not being able to get your back wheel out. Here is simple one, but I’m
sure we’re all guilty of it. Or at least I know I’m guilty of it. You need to take your back
wheel out, and you know that you need to put your chain in the smallest cog on your cassette. But you just can’t really be bothered. I mean how much harder is it going to be to get your back wheel out. A lot harder. In fact, much, much, much harder. So rather than try spending
ages faffing around getting your back wheel out, with your derailleur
in the wrong position, just change gear first. Searching for tools. Now this used to be another
one of my specialties, losing tools. Ugh, man the amount of
time I lost one winter trying to find my cassette tool. And it wasn’t a one off
either, it was a regular thing. And it does still happen
from time to time now. As I absentmindedly put the
tool down somewhere random and then completely forget all about it. Now of course this
isn’t a maintenance job, but it is nevertheless a
mindblowingly irritating thing and easy to prevent as well. Just create special place to keep all your bike maintenance tools. We’re not of course all
going to be as lucky as this, but a small tool box or a small tool wall will make working on your
bike that much quicker and that much easier. With the exception of helping
to look for lost tools which we haven’t covered
on the channel yet. Although that is actually
quite a good idea. We’ve got videos about most
of the unfortunate outcomes talked about in this video. How to remove stripped bolts
is in fact coming soon, so do make sure you subscribe to GCN by clicking on the globe to make sure you don’t miss that one. And then for a couple more, why not click just down there to help
remove a stuck seat post if you need that. Or deep down there for help
with internal cable routing.

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