For the last few weeks we have been compiling different tricks of the bicycle mechanics trade for us to try/use inside the shop. Many of our participants have contributed to the list and we've had some additions come from other cycling folks in the community. Please feel free to add you tricks here and we can continue to add them to our list!
Here is what we have so far:
1.Use WD-40 with steel wool to remove rust from
your bike. Be careful when using this method on rims- or be sure to clean your
bike very well before riding it after using this method.Oily breaking surface = no breaks!
2.For rust removal, rub the part with aluminum
foil dipped in vinegar.
3.When you put the seat back on, pull a piece of
string taught from the center rear of the seat to the center of your steer
tube. This is much more precise than “eyeballing” it.
4.Use old spoke nipples as cable ends, just slide
the nipple over the cable end, shank end first, squeeze the nipple shank with
the wire cutting jaws of a pair of pliers (gently) to fix to the cable then nip
off the head of the nipple with the wire cutters.
5.If you have a bent derailleur hanger, find an
old, worthless hub axle with the same thread pitch, thread it into the hanger,
and use as a lever to bend it back. Be careful not to strip threads or snap the
6.When you are attaching your cleats to your
shoes, especially with MTB shoes, fill the hex holes with melted wax (just drip
it off a candle). Then, when it's time to tighten/adjust/replace your cleats
all you have to do is melt the wax out with a lighter rather than spend 10mins
chipping out 2 years’ worth of well packed clay.
7.When trying to remove a stripped hex bolt try
gently hammering your hex wrench into the bolt and then loosening the stripped
bolt—call it Andy’s trick.You may also
try using a rubber band at the end of the hex wrench.
8.When installing pedals, just remember that the
right pedal goes in the "right way" and the left pedal is not
9.Use a pair of spanners to hold grip tape in
place when taping your bars.
10.Use fourth hand tool to tighten zip ties.
11.Use steel file on the end of brake housing to
give your work a nice professional touch.
loosening the locknut on a front or rear hub use the “closing fist” technique.Position both the cone wrench and box wrench
in a position (cone wrench should be in the 5 o’clock position and the box
wrench in the 7 o’clock position).If
wrenches are in the correct position you should be able to wrap your fist
around both wrenches and squeeze them together resulting in the locknut
I'm excited to read what you all have in your arsenals!
For the last few weeks there have been a number of participants coming in to report that they have been told by a crossing guard that they should be riding their bicycles on the sidewalk rather than on the right side of the road.
To help clarify things I have linked the MDOT Bicycling Laws below as well as the City of Biddeford ordinance regarding bicycles on the sidewalk.
Recently, the CBC has seen an influx of younger riders walk through the doors and we are noticing that although many of them own a bicycle and understand some of the mechanics, they simply do not know how to mount and start their bicycle. Here are some basic steps in teaching kids (or even some experienced cyclists)how to mount and start pedaling their bicycle.
1. Stand astride the frame, both feet on the ground. Most people get to
this position by swinging a leg over the saddle, but if you have low
handlebars, you can do it over the bars as well. If you have a "lady's"
bike or other bike with a low frame, you may be able to lift your foot
over the frame. It sometimes helps to lean the bike to the side before
2. Rotate the pedals so that the pedal for your less skillful foot is 45 degrees forward of straight up (roughly 10:00).
3. Put your foot on the high pedal, then press down hard. This will simultaneously:
Let you use the pedal as a step to lift yourself high enough to get onto the saddle...and:
Apply driving force to the chain, causing the bike to pick up speed
(adopted from Sheldon Brown)
A common misconception:
1. You should be able to touch the ground with both feet while sitting in the saddle-- incorrect. If your saddle is adjusted properly adjusted you will not be able to touch the ground with both feet. Check out this link to properly adjust your saddle Seat Adjustment.
When was the last time you drove your car on the sidewalk?
Do you ever drive on the left side of the road or drive at night without headlights?
Hopefully, you answered “never, no, and no.” What about when you’re riding a
bike? Cyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as motorists. If
you’re one of the 900,000 cyclists in Maine (MaineDOT) then you know that riding
PREDICTABLY, which means obeying all vehicle traffic laws, is one of your best
strategies to prevent crashes. Instead of seatbelts, cyclists wear helmets. How
many weeks of allowance would your “criminal” child have to save to pay the $25
ticket for violating Maine’s youth helmet law?Prevent injury (and tickets!) by learning Maine’s Rules of the Road for
bicyclists and motorists.
Rules for Bicyclist
1.Maintain and regularly inspect your equipment.
Secure any loads tightly.
2.Wear a helmet correctly.Helmets are required by law for anyone under
3.Be visible and predictable wearing bright colors
and plan ahead.
4.Ride with traffic on the right side and do not
pass motorists on the right.
5.Watch for potential hazards by scanning 100 feet
ahead to avoid hazards.
6.Signal all turns and remember to look back
before you make a lane change or turn.
7.Be prepared for conditions by carrying supplies,
proper clothing and plenty of water.
8.Obey all traffic laws by riding with traffic and
obeying all stop signs and traffic lights.
9.Ride single file in traffic and notify other
bicyclists of approaching cars.
10.Warn others when approaching and yield to
11.Always ride with lights at night both headlight
and tail lights with reflective clothing.
As motorists, we must respect the rights of other road
users including bicyclists. Check out these rules and suggestions for
Rules for Motorists
1.Reduce your speed when passing bicyclists.
2.Don't blast your horn when approaching
3.When a road becomes too narrow for cars and
bikes to ride safely side by side, bicycles should ride in or near the center
of the lane.
4.Recognize situations and obstacles which may be
hazardous to bicyclists and give them adequate space to maneuver.
5.Do NOT pass bicyclists if oncoming traffic is
near and wait as you would with any slow-moving vehicle.
6.In bad weather give bicyclist extra trailing and
7.When uncertain in any situation slow down until
it's safe to pass.
8.Give at least three feet of passing space
between the right side of your vehicle and a bicyclist.
9.After passing a bicyclist on your right, check
over your shoulder to make sure you have allowed enough room before moving
10.Do not turn in front of bicyclists unless you
can do so safely.
11.When turning left at an intersection, yield to
oncoming bicyclists just as you would yield to oncoming motorists.
12.Before opening your car door, look for
bicyclists who may be approaching.
13.Children on bicycles are often unpredictable -
expect the unexpected.
all drive and bicycle safely and are considerate of others it is easy to Share