Chain Maintenance

Proper bicycle chain maintenance will allow you to keep your bike in tip-top condition for riding. Learning how to take care of your chain can save you time and energy.

A bicycle chain is known for failing at the worst time. This problem of a jumpy or jerky chain can be removed entirely, though, if you simply do some chain maintenance on it regularly. This means that you check your chain at least two times per month or after you ride it about 10 hours if you ride quite a bit. You also want to be sure to do a chain check if you have been riding in bad weather.

You should replace your chain if it is rusted, tight, worn out, or you have ridden more than 1000 miles on it. A new chain with 24 links should measure 12 inches and if it is too long even by 1/16 of an inch, then you want to replace it so that it does not damage the chain ring or sprocket. If you are replacing the chain rings or sprocket, then you need to go ahead and replace the chain so that you do not damage the new chain rings and sprocket.

The metal parts of the chain do not really stretch, but the chain does get longer because of the sleeves and pins wear and tear. Lubricating the chain regularly will help the chain to last longer. If you want to lubricate correctly, then you will want to put just a lubricant drop into each chain pin. This may take you a little time, but it will be well worth it when you increase the life of your chain.

Leave the lubricant on the chain for about 15 minutes and then wipe the excess off with a clean cloth. This will help to keep the chain from catching dirt and grime while riding. It will also keep your chain in tip-top condition.

If you need to clean your bicycle chain, then you can use a degreaser or dish soap. This is a great way to remove lubricant, grime, and grease to help your chain to work better. After you clean it, remember to lubricate it again. You should put the cleaner on the center of the cleaning cloth or sponge and then place it around the chain. By backpedaling, you should clean the chain sufficiently. Make sure that you rinse the rag each turn until you do not get any more dirt on it.

Leave the chain on the bicycle when you are cleaning it to keep it from becoming weaker. While you are getting the chain clean, then you can inspect it for any links that may be too tight. A tight chain can cause the chain to jump and jerk. If you find a link that is tight, then you can loosen it by flexing it between two points that are located at about give links away from the tight link. If you cannot loosen it, then you will have to replace the chain. Keeping your bike chain lubricated and clean will help it to last much longer and work much better.

If your chain seems to be making some noise and cleaning does not stop the noise, then you will have to replace it. If pedaling becomes difficult, then it will be time for a chain change as well. By paying attention to detail and maintenance, then you will have a bike chain that you can use for a long time.

Mountain Bike Basics

At this article you will read what mountain biking is as well as how to get the information on various kinds of mountain bikes. The most commonly used Mountain Bikes are: Downhill Bikes:Most prominently used for competition in which one goes down the hill. So with that speed, bikes need to be with tough frames and with heavy-duty brakes such as disc or hydraulic brakes. XC Bikes: This is another kind of bike which is highly used for competition in which one can go both down and climb hills. So its frame should be light but reasonably tough. Brakes used in this particular bike are v-brakes and light disc brakes. Hybrid Bikes: This category of bikes is a good option for those who want to ride on both mountains and road. These bikes either run on front suspension or on full suspension (which is a combination of both front and back suspensions). Various kinds of brakes employed in these bikes are:- Rim Brakes: They are both light and powerful but their power decreases in muddy terrain where they become slippery. Disc Brakes: They are light and powerful and are not affected by weather. Hydraulic Brakes: They are very powerful and donít need much maintenance, but are expensive than other brakes. Frame Materials: The bikes can be made of aluminum, steel or titanium. These are very important elements of the bike as their composition determines the weight, strength, responsiveness and life of the bike. Size: Like conventional bikes, mountain bikes come in small, medium and large sizes. But different manufactures use different reference point of measurement therefore sizing is not always consistent. Latest Trends: All Mountain Bikes: The ìAll Mountain Bikesî are characterized by 5-6 inch (125-150 mm) rims to take on very rough conditions. 29er Bike: This uses 700cc-sized rims and is suited for tires of 2 inches (50mm) width or more, so that it is able to roll over the obstacles. Singlespeed: This is a blend of simplicity with innovation in suspension design. Some of the other trends includeStable Platform Value Suspension Technology. Here the compressor shim stack has been replaced with a pair of overlapping cups. It also employs VPP suspension designs to balance different forces thereby eliminating unwanted compression without limiting bump absorption.