Road­side As­sis­tance

4 es­sen­tial fixes you should be able to do when out on a ride

Canadian Cycling Magazine - - MAINTENANCE - By Nick Di Cristo­faro

There are ba­sic me­chan­i­cal skills that ev­ery cy­clist should have, es­pe­cially out on the road or trail. You may not ever tackle a wheel build, but have to be able to fix a flat . I’ve been on many rides where I sit back and watch some­one strug­gle with a flat tire, un­til I put an end to the rider’s mis­ery. The re­pair is sim­ple if you use the right tech­nique and know what to look for. See ‘Fix­ing a Flat’ (right) for my tried-and-true method.

Now what do you do if you have a cut side­wall or tread? If the cut is on the tread you are pretty much out of luck. If the cut is on the side­wall, you can some­times line the in­side of the tire be­fore in­stalling the tube. There are proper tire boots you can use, which don’t take up too much room in your seat bag. Also, a small piece cut from an old in­ner tube will work , as well as a $5 bill.

BABAnother com­mon ad­just­ment on the road is the head­set . If you’re get­ting knock­ing in the front end or brake shud­der, you could have a loose head­set. First, loosen the stem’s pinch bolts, and then the top cap. Re­move the top cap to in­spect the com­pres­sion plug to make sure it’s tight and seated in the steer­ing tube. Then, tighten the cap bolt slowly while grab­bing the front brake and rock­ing the bike back and forth. Tighten the top-cap bolt un­til you don’t feel any play in the head­set. Fi­nally, align the stem with your front wheel and snug up the pinch bolts.

You should also be pre­pared to han­dle a bro­ken chain . Carry a small chain tool to re­move a bent or bro­ken link. You can use the tool to reat­tach the re­main­ing length of chain. Make sure you don’t com­pletely pop out the pin that you want to push back in. An eas­ier method of re­con­nect­ing the chain is with a quick link. I rec­om­mend you al­ways carry a cou­ple ex­tra quick links in your seat bag.

CDDCA

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