Sunday, November 28, 2010
these roto ratchets save time. long length handles for extra leverage. break the fastener loose in the 90 degree position and then straighten the handle to spin it out like a screw driver. great for 8mm or 14mm crank bolts. i like to keep a 5mm hex bit socket on the little 1/4 drive one. the gearwrench 3/8 and 1/4 drive set runs about $30 on sale at sears.
Friday, November 26, 2010
this bracket is a piece of crap. to be expected but whatever its a cheap light. the angle adjustment knob is garbage. with the knob tight for the angle adjustment, the head still has some play in it. this play over time will loosen the angle adjustment. in the middle of a ride the light will just rotate and blast your face. i put loctite on it to prevent loosening. adjust the angle by rotating it on your bars.
Thursday, November 25, 2010
these torque keys are handy to keep around. ritchey is probably the first company that made these popular. bontrager has a version of this tool that is much easier to use. the handle is larger so its easier to use. the bit it not removeable on the bontrager one. there are reports of people removing the bits with heat or prying it out but i have not tried. the ritchey one has replaceable bits, i keep a t25 torx on it for disc brake rotor bolts. these run about $20 each
Sunday, November 21, 2010
when somone leaves you a bike to work on and it has the pinhead/onguard locking skewers, have no fear. they are easily removed with vise grips. the key that comes with the skewers are very short, so the skewers are not on very tight. a gator grip socket also makes quick work on them.
Thursday, November 18, 2010
just got the bike today and rode it home. bike rides incredibly smooth with the carbon fork. handles very smooth and fluid like. brakes work great once the pads bedded in. assembling the bike was straight forward, no real issues except the wheels. the wheels needed to be tensioned. the tension was pretty balanced but low around 75 kgf. i brought the tension up to 110-120 kgf. the rear rack is pretty sturdy too. the included fenders do not provide enough coverage so i will be installing planet bike hardcore fenders.
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
the bracket that comes with the light is pretty bad. the inside has some ribbed rubber pads. they suck and the mount moves around with the ribs squirming around. the bracket is only suitable for a 31.8mm diameter clamp area. i removed the rubber pads and it fits fine on 31.8 bars.
Thursday, November 11, 2010
made this today. piece of brake housing. 1/4 inch diameter magnet and 3/8 shrink tube. stick the magnet on the end of brake housing. i ground the end of the brake housing flat. slide on shrink tube and heat it up. i let the shrink tube roll over the front of the magnet so it holds well. use this to fish cables that are routed internally
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
when installing new cables/housing or assembling a new bike, always prestress the cable systems. this will seat the housing ferrules firmly. this will make your adjustments last a lot longer. for the brake system i grab a handfull of brake to really seat the ferrules. for derailleurs i grab the exposed cable run, pedal and tug at the same time. you should see an increase in the time between adjustments.
Monday, November 8, 2010
i have been seeing more of this grip tape lately. feels good in the hand if you like a rubbery type feel. the tape also has some good cushion to it. i was wrapping some bars today with this tape and promptly ripped it. so don't stretch this stuff like your normal cork tape, it will rip.
Sunday, November 7, 2010
make a headset press at home. pick up some all thread, nuts and fender washers at the hardware store. i used 1/2in all thread in this one. bring the headset cups to the store to get the right size washers. grease the threads before use, it will make it work smoother. use a ratchet or wrenches to press the cups in. don't forget to grease the cups before install. I also press 1 cup at a time.
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
made my own lock ring pliers from a cheap set of import water pump pliers. these run about 12-15 new. real lock ring pliers? well about triple that. these can be made in about 10 minutes with a file and vise. have a few lock rings to test fit. a grinder can be used to remove bulk material but i used the files to shape the notches/teeth. they work great for fixie lock rings and bb lock rings. make your own!
good USA made tools can be found at yard and estate sales. pliers, ratchets, wrenchs, screwdrivers. i have found snap on, craftsman, channellock, and other great brands for pennies on the dollar. generally about 1-2 dollars a tool when i get a few of them. you wont find much metric sized stuff but SAE sizes are plentiful. i get the ratchets to keep my favorite sockets, bits, bb tools loaded and ready to go to save time. no need to swap bits etc. 4,5,6mm hex bit sockets get their own ratchet. i will have more posts about some of my favorite tools
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
so im just going to start off and say my writing will not be the best. this blog will be about bicycle mechanics. i would say the mechanics part would be geared more towards the experienced or shop mechanic but new people wanting to learn will benefit too. the trek portland will be my commute bike and ill review it on an on going basis. it will be arriving in late november. dont expect a lot of miles in the winter.