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5 Steps for a ready Spring Tour

Before you head outside for your first ride of spring, spend some time getting your bike ready for the road. These basic bike tips will help ensure a safe, efficient ride all season. Hongjin industrial wish you enjoy the spring bike tour.

Tune-up task #1: Clean your bike.

A clean bike extends the life of all its components, just as a clean car lasts longer.

What to do: Use a basic biodegradable cleaner such as detergent, a towel and an old toothbrush to clean everything: the frame, chain, chain rings, cassette, derailleurs, pedals, brakes, and seat. Make an effort to use as little water as possible. Also, remove the seat post (the tube connected to your seat that slides into the frame) and after cleaning it, and add a small amount of bicycle grease before reattaching it. This grease will last longer than oil, which dries out faster, and will also act as a barrier against rust in the seat tube.

Tune-up task #2: Inspect your brake system.

Brakes are a vital component of all bikes because they provide control over the speed you travel. Controlling speed reduces the likelihood of being in an accident. Brakes also permit the cyclist to maneuver while turning, riding up and down hills and avoiding debris or other obstacles.

What to do: First, check the brake pads, the rectangular rubberized component that actually rubs against the metal tire rim. Just like the brakes in your car, bicycle brakes wear down over time and need to be replaced. Use a flashlight to assess if the pads are wearing evenly.

Tune-up task #3: Watch your wheels.

Wheels or rims hold your tires in place and provide stability and smoothness while riding. Your bike would not move without rims because they allow consistent contact between the tires and road surface.

What to do: Clean the wheels with rubbing alcohol and a clean, dry cloth. Inspect the rims for nicks, scrapes, dents or other damage. Next, elevate one end of the bike and spin the wheel. The wheel should move smoothly, without wobbling. Repeat for the other wheel.

Tune-up task #4: Inspect the drivetrain.

A bike’s drivetrain includes the pedals, chain, chainring, derailleur (the device that moves the chain to make riding easier or harder) and rear wheel cassette (all the little teeth in the center of the rear wheel).

What to do: You will need a partner or bike stand to assist with this part of the tune-up. Raise the rear wheel and spin as you did when checking the wheels (task #3 above). This time, shift through all the gears. Shifting should be smooth and easy to perform. Inspect the chain, chainrings, derailleur and cassette for damage (excessive wear, missing teeth, dents, scrapes, etc.). Note that small chainrings wear out sooner than large chainrings and that chains are the most frequently replaced component of the drivetrain.

Tune-up task #5: Add lubricant.

Oil lubricant coats the chain and other components of the drivetrain, helping them last longer and work more efficiently. Lube also reduces accumulation of dirt and grime, which helps increase performance of the moving parts.

What to do: Apply lubricant evenly to the chain while slowly rotating the pedals in a counterclockwise direction. Also, remember to lube moving parts on the derailleur, the pivot point on the brake levers and any exposed cable wire. Remember to wipe off any excess oil with a clean, dry rag, especially on the chain.

Now that your springtime tune-up is finished, you're almost ready to ride.



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