Bike repair is a skill any self-respecting cyclist and triathlete must be able to do.
It is essential that you know how to look after your bike. You must be able to change a tire quickly (and do it under pressure in a race), fix a broken chain link and do a quick weekly maintenance on it.
And what the heck are derailleurs, bottom brackets and groupsets?
Why should you learn bike repair skills?
There are MANY great reasons why you need to learn bike repair skills:
1. Normal weekly training survival
On your longer rides you may be further afield from home. If you break down or puncture you could be stuck. 50 miles is a long walk home! You may be in a remote area with no cell phone signal or anyone to flag down for help. You may not want to flag down a stranger to help- especially if you are a lone female cyclist!
2. Extend the lifespan of your bike
Simple bike maintenance of cleaning and oiling the components will extend the lifespan of your bike by 2-3 years on average. This alone can save you thousands of dollars over time
3. Bike runs more smoothly= faster times
If the components, the chain and the gears are clogged with dirt, dust and grit, they require more power applied to generate the same force. If the bike runs freely, it require 5-10 watts less to ride at the same speed
4. Safety concerns
Give your bike a quick look over once a week. You will pick up on problems before they occur like a balding tire that might blow as you are descending a hill at 40 mph or a loose headset.
5. Gain respect from other athletes on a group ride
No one is looked upon with as much derision as the person who joins a group ride but cannot change their own tire or fix a chain link. Others are always happy to help but you do need to know the basics and have brought you own tools or spares.
6. Important skill for racing
In a race you cannot accept any outside assistance or you will be disqualified. Even if you do what one our Ironman clients did and do ALL your training on an indoor bike, (very stupid strategy by the way!), you still need to have the skills to repair your bike quickly in an event.
7. Self respect
It is very cool to be able to know the basics, look after your bike and fix the simple problems of your own machine
8. Don’t get ripped off in the bike shop
Most bike shops are awesome but they can “over-service you” if you look like a newbie. ie give you services you don’t need.
Or tell you they have done the “works” but really only done the bare minimum
9. Save a fortune
If you regularly maintain the bike (5-10 minutes a week), you will not require as much work in your monthly and yearly services. Plus you will not be charged for excessive “extras” as they know that you know what you are talking about.
Lemme tell you a story…
For me, I confess, it actually took me a long time to bother learning about bike repair.
There were so many other skills to learn on the bike, but really this is one of the most important.
I knew how to change a tire but that was about it (and I was too slow at that).
I took it for a service once a year and hoped that was good enough.
One day I was out with a buddy on a long ride.
We were cycling in a remote forest.
My chain broke!
I had no chain tool, no spare chain links and no way out.
There was no cell phone reception, no taxis to flag down.
It would have been a very LONG painful walk out of there.
Thankfully, my friend knew all about fixing chains, he had a chain link tool and within 5-10 minutes, he had fixed my chain and we were on our way.
Oh but not before he gave me an incredulous look of scorn and a stern talking to that I did not have these tools and had not acquired this knowledge.
I was already a competitive triathlete and was winning time trials by then, so I should have known better but this had never happened to me before- so I guess I had not bothered.
He made me cycle directly to the nearest bike shop to buy the tools I need to fix this problem in the future and a warning to take a bike repair course and get these basics sorted.
It was an important wake up call for me- as I admit I was a bit lax and had thought “It will be alright! What could possibly go wrong?” Besides there was ”never time” to get around to it. With any spare time I had, I was training right?
(Though I did seem to make time for the Netflix binges on occasion … I guess, looking back, I could have made time!)
After some extensive research, I found an awesome bike repair course online and got myself an education.
This bike repair course was perfect for me… as I did not want to go to an “evening class”, I did not need a bike maintenance degree, I just needed to know the basics.
I also appreciated not being in a class where everyone would know how little I knew about it.
And to be honest, I actually really enjoyed it. I could learn at my own pace.
There are 200+ videos taking you step-by step through the whole bike maintenance system
Plus a 150 page accompanying illustrated manual to refer to.
The person behind the product is Dave Delgado. He is the creator of DIYBikeRepair and is also a professional bike designer.
He contributes to various biking magazines and other cycling publications regularly.
With your purchase, you will get the complete DIYBikeRepair system which includes: (VIP Deluxe edition)
1. Instant Access To Over 200 step-by-step videos
2. Hundreds of pages of repair manuals
3. TuneUp Secrets and Upkeep Tips Book
4. Complete Bike Repair and Maintenance Manuals
5. Free Lifetime Updates
6. Free One-On-One Training (limited spots!)
Here is a sneak peak at some of the modules:
* How to Change a Bikes Handlebar Stem
* How to Change a Derailleur
* How to Change a Gear Cassette
* How to Change Chain Rings
* How to Remove Chain Rings
* Choose the Right Pedals for a Road Bike
* How to Make Shift Adjustments
* How to Set Up a Bicycle Chain
* Learn Regular Maintenance for Road Bikes
* Learn Road Bike Gearing Tips
Plus lots more… there is a lot more to a bike than just riding it :)
I was actually shocked at how much I did not know.
Anyway, I advise you to check it out.
If you do not think it was helpful, simply return it for an immediate refund and enjoy the confidence of a 60 day ironclad, no questions asked money back guarantee.
Not that you will need it- as I said, I loved this course and got a ton from it.
I was probably more proud of learning how to fix and maintain my bike than I was when I got my degree.
Plus DIYBikeRepair is currently running a huge promotion.
Normally it sells for over $127, they have slashed the regular price down to $47…for now
I have already earned this money back on fees to the bike shop that I no longer required :)
Charlotte “new mechanic” Campbell
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