Fix Five Common Bike Repairs

It's no fun taking your bike to the LBS only to hear that your problem is user error. Mechanics face these five customer woes all the time. Here's how to solve them yourself.


Lindsay J. Westley |

It’s no fun taking your bike to the LBS only to hear that your problem is user error. Mechanics face these five customer woes all the time. Here’s how to solve them yourself. — By Lindsay J. Westley

Degreasing Your Chain

chain-lube

Problem: My chain isn’t shifting correctly, and it skips a lot.

What Happened: You may be an over luber, and the excess sticky stuff is attracting grime to the chain and cassette. First clean, rinse, and dry your chain and cassette (the gears in the back). You can buy bike-specific degreasers and chain-cleaning gizmos, but dish soap and a toothbrush work, too. Next, carefully apply one drop (more is not better) of lube onto each roller as you turn the cranks backward for two or three rotations. Finally, take a clean rag and gently grip the chain’s outer plates as you spin the cranks for one more rotation. Keep going until you’ve wiped off all the excess lube—it should be mostly inside the chain on the rollers, not on the outside where it can attract dirt.

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