Looking for someone who knows what they are doing to show me how to tune the bike....- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    mtx
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    Looking for someone who knows what they are doing to show me how to tune the bike....

    Hi,

    I had one main problem with my bike, but now it has turned into two....and this is AFTER going to MEC and paying for an "advanced tune-up". Now they want to charge me again. NO WAY!

    Problems:

    1. I hear clicking/grinding from my gears presumably whenever I am at the highest speed
    2. (NEW) I hear another feint noise that sounds like it is coming from the front wheel or brakes. I
    3. Any way of bleeding brakes myself, for cheap?

    So what I am looking for is someone, preferably a bike expert, who knows what they are doing, someone that can fix my bike and if possible teach me how to properly tune the bike at the same time. I don't have a lot of money but I can offer some. I am in Toronto, ON.


    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Easiest (and cheapest) would be to do a quick search on 'derailleur adjustment'. I didn't know squat about bike maintenance either and a quick read and a half hour with the bike on the stand and I definitely understood the basics of derailleur adjustment. All you need is a few hex keys (probably only one) and a screw driver.

    Sometimes you'll never get your front derailleur not to rub at at least one extreme....

    Same thing goes for the brakes. It just sounds like you need to center your calipers which you only need hex keys for.
    Last edited by akura; 05-25-2011 at 06:10 AM.

  3. #3
    All my faucets is Moen.
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    You can try this website. http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help

    Do not bleed your own brakes, its very difficult. Take it to a mechanic who knows what they are doing and they will be ok for a long time. Its not that expensive either, cheaper then a bleed kit.

  4. #4
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    If you have the gumption (and depending on who else is in the shop that night), don't forget to check out the do-it-yourself bike repair shops such as http://bikesauce.org/ and http://bikepirates.com/
    Come visit Trail Swag, an outdoors blog for Ontario!

  5. #5
    sock puppet
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    oops...

    I didn't know that and I have been bleeding my own brakes for years...


    Naah... Anyone can bleed brakes - in the long run it is cheaper to get a bleed kit - which usually consists of 2 syringes, some cheap plastic tubing and maybe a brake brand specific screw if that... Say $20 max???

    With regards to bike tune-up - web sites are a great reference, however - to get started, the best is to spend a little bit of time with someone who knows what he/she is doing.

    If you are at Mansfield this Saturday - I'll be more than happy to help you understand how things work. In 10 minutes - you will be able to adjust your rear derailleur - yourself.

    There is no better feeling but be able to successfully fix/tune/adjust your own bike... Particularly if it is before or during a great ride...


    Quote Originally Posted by thedumbopinion
    You can try this website. http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help

    Do not bleed your own brakes, its very difficult. Take it to a mechanic who knows what they are doing and they will be ok for a long time. Its not that expensive either, cheaper then a bleed kit.

  6. #6
    Evil Jr.
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    Quote Originally Posted by osokolo
    I didn't know that and I have been bleeding my own brakes for years...


    Naah... Anyone can bleed brakes - in the long run it is cheaper to get a bleed kit - which usually consists of 2 syringes, some cheap plastic tubing and maybe a brake brand specific screw if that... Say $20 max???
    There are also an infinite number of ways for a novice mechanic to screw up a brake bleed. Probably wiser to start with something simpler and move up from there.

    Potential answers to problems:

    1. The "clicking" is probably coming from the rear and it probably only requires a quarter-turn (or two) of the rear derailleur barrel adjuster, one way or the other, to dial out. The "grinding" is probably coming from the front. This might be a little bit tougher to diagnose. If it happens while you're in the biggest chainring, it might be as simple as adjusting the upper limit screw to give the cage a little more clearance to the chain.

    2. Sounds like pad rub(?). Different brands have different recommendations for caliper position so the best thing to do is consult the Tech section on their website for the instructions specific to your model.

    3. Again, different brakes bleed differently and use very specific fluids. Check the Tech section for your brand and model for best results!

    Happy wrenching!
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  7. #7
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    Brake bleeding isn't difficult, but it is also almost never necessary.

    Mountain bike brakes are both less complicated and see far less heat than do car brakes, so the conditions that produce fluid outgassing (that requires bleeding) almost never occur.

    Much more common is uneven brake pad wear resulting in the caliper being suboptimally centered over the rotor, which can in turn cause noise and/or excessive lever travel or sponginess. Periodically re-centering the caliper by loosening the caliper mounting bolts, squeezing the lever hard a couple of times, then squeezing and holding the lever while tightening the caliper mount bolts, will usually solve the problem.

    Sometimes the pads don't retract evenly, so the advanced technique is to loosen the caliper mount bolts, place a bright light under the caliper so the gap between the pads and the rotor is clearly seen, and then adjust the caliper position manually.

    Deraileurs seem complicated, but they are actually pretty simple. A spring in the deraileur tries to pull it to one extreme position (the low side). A cable, attached to the shifter, can pull it against the spring in the opposite direction (the high side). The shifter is designed to pull exactly enough cable per "click" to lift the deraileur one gear position towards the "high" side. Release the cable one "click", and the spring pulls the deraileur exactly one gear to the "low" side.

    (Note that "low" and "high" here refer to spring tension, not necessarily gear ratio)

    If there is any slack in the cable when the deraileur is fully "low", the cable pulled by the first shifter "click" will first take up the slack before it starts moving the deraileur, which either prevents the shift at all (lots of slack) or causes rubbing/clicking (a litttle slack) because the deraileur never quite gets centered over the cog.

    Too much tension in the "low" position does the same thing, but in the other direction.

    And over time, the cable stretches and becomes more slack, so there is a tension "barrel" adjuster that allows the tension to be tuned.

    DG

  8. #8
    sock puppet
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    Quote Originally Posted by garage monster
    There are also an infinite number of ways for a novice mechanic to screw up a brake bleed. Probably wiser to start with something simpler and move up from there.
    under no circumstance did I suggest that one tries to bleed his/her brakes without a thorough preparation, including having someone to guide them through the first one... I did it all by myself, the first time. And it was Magura brakes, which are "considered" a tough ones (not really, just a myth).

    Good suggestions bellow...


    Potential answers to problems:

    1. The "clicking" is probably coming from the rear and it probably only requires a quarter-turn (or two) of the rear derailleur barrel adjuster, one way or the other, to dial out. The "grinding" is probably coming from the front. This might be a little bit tougher to diagnose. If it happens while you're in the biggest chainring, it might be as simple as adjusting the upper limit screw to give the cage a little more clearance to the chain.

    2. Sounds like pad rub(?). Different brands have different recommendations for caliper position so the best thing to do is consult the Tech section on their website for the instructions specific to your model.

    3. Again, different brakes bleed differently and use very specific fluids. Check the Tech section for your brand and model for best results!

    Happy wrenching!

  9. #9
    namagomi
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    Problem #1 may also be your b-screw not adjusted or a really dirty pulley.

    Check out this repair site, easy how-to videos.

    http://bicycletutor.com/guide/

  10. #10
    Lemmy Rules!
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    Some bike stores run basic bike maintenance courses from time to time. You might want to check the websites of local bike stores, or go in and ask, to see if there is anything going on near you.

    Also, a number of years ago, I bought a book called "Zinn and the Art of Mountainbike Maintenance". It is by far the best "how to" book I have ever come across and I would recommend you pick up a copy. I believe they sell it at MEC (that is where I bought it).

    If your bike is a new one, I would imagine that the gear cables have stretched, in which case Garage Monster's diagnosis and prescription are correct. Disc brakes are tricky and I would strongly recommend against bleeding them yourself unless it is with someone who knows what they are doing.

    Mechanics via email, though, is a tricky business and no substitute for having someone who knows what they are doing look at the bike.
    Strava made me do it....

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by RecceDG

    Deraileurs seem complicated, but they are actually pretty simple. A spring in the deraileur tries to pull it to one extreme position (the low side). A cable, attached to the shifter, can pull it against the spring in the opposite direction (the high side). The shifter is designed to pull exactly enough cable per "click" to lift the deraileur one gear position towards the "high" side. Release the cable one "click", and the spring pulls the deraileur exactly one gear to the "low" side.

    (Note that "low" and "high" here refer to spring tension, not necessarily gear ratio)

    DG
    Your High and Low are very much against common terminology, as the limiter screws are marked H and L as in High - Smallest Cog (highest gear) and Low - Largest Cog (lowest gear). It gets very confusing when you start mixing terminology when teaching beginners. It is also against the common terminology of High normal (top normal) and Low normal (rapid rise). so if you use the common terminology for High and Low (gearing you will never get the two confused which could get you into trouble) Sorry for the rant but I teach people in the shop all the time and I find they learn faster if you keep everything consistent.

    As for the actual problems, the suggestions for the breaks are good, but there is much more to look at for the gearing sounds, especially when you are saying that it is only happening on the highest gears. It may be rubbing against the front dérailleur (pretty common on a FS bike as it is perfect on the stand but when you have sag the chain actually runs along a little higher line at the front dérailleur). Or the hanger could be slightly bent. and as somebody else said it could be your b-tension screw, depending on what you are calling your higher gears (the importance of having standard terminology)

    One thing is for sure though there is a ton of youtube videos out there and lots of sites that you can learn off of, if you learn how parts work there is nothing complicated on a bike. The more you work on them the faster you are able to troubleshoot the problems.
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  12. #12
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    riding a single speed eliminates the need for tuning up derailleurs - just a thought.

  13. #13
    mtx
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    I guess I should have mentioned this earlier, but I am riding a http://www.klassickona.com/oldgold/2006/cinder_cone.htm. I tried removing the backwheel and putting it back on last time but I couldn't even figure out that part, despite watching YouTube tutorials 30 times. The chain just wouldn't go on......

  14. #14
    Evil Jr.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtx View Post
    I tried removing the backwheel and putting it back on last time but I couldn't even figure out that part, despite watching YouTube tutorials 30 times. The chain just wouldn't go on......
    Back wheels can be tricky to get back in smoothly with all those pesky calipers and derailleurs in there. I don't know if they mentioned it in the video you saw, but the first step in making it as easy as possible is to start by shifting the chain into the smallest cog (the gears in the rear) before you remove the wheel. When you go to put it back in, line the chain up with the same cog and pull the derailleur out of the way by rotating it back about its main pivot.

    As long as your rotor is lined-up with the caliper, things should slide into place relatively smoothly although a little bit of jiggling may be required.

    For style points, tighten the skewer in such a way that your quick release lever is in line with the non-drive side chain stay when you clamp it down!
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  15. #15
    Team NFI
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    Turn up the volume on your IPod.

  16. #16
    namagomi
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enduramil View Post
    Turn up the volume on your IPod.
    That gets expensive.... not only components, but injury risk due to failure and hearing loss!

  17. #17
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    Your High and Low are very much against common terminology, as the limiter screws are marked H and L as in High - Smallest Cog (highest gear) and Low - Largest Cog (lowest gear). It gets very confusing when you start mixing terminology when teaching beginners.
    But if you are trying to explain function, "low spring force" (uncompressed) and "high spring force" (fully compressed) make it a lot easier to understand how the mechanism actually works.

    They can be introduced to the bass-ackwards industry terminology later.

    Trust me, I've taught my share of newbies.

    DG

  18. #18
    mtx
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    Quote Originally Posted by garage monster View Post
    Back wheels can be tricky to get back in smoothly with all those pesky calipers and derailleurs in there. I don't know if they mentioned it in the video you saw, but the first step in making it as easy as possible is to start by shifting the chain into the smallest cog (the gears in the rear) before you remove the wheel. When you go to put it back in, line the chain up with the same cog and pull the derailleur out of the way by rotating it back about its main pivot.

    As long as your rotor is lined-up with the caliper, things should slide into place relatively smoothly although a little bit of jiggling may be required.

    For style points, tighten the skewer in such a way that your quick release lever is in line with the non-drive side chain stay when you clamp it down!
    Thanks for all the suggestions. I was able to change the tires with a friend. It wasn't very hard but I need to invest in the proper tools to make my life easier. The back wheel wasn't very hard to put back on - I just need more practice.

    A kind member from MTBR helped me with the other noise related issues which was coming from the front and back brakes. For the front brakes...the rotor was bent so he simply "unbent" it out of shape. Rear brakes were a bit more tricky...adjustments had to be made for the brake pads. Something else did come up - I was test riding the changes and my chain snapped in half....he was king enough to repair the broken link and now all seems good!

    Thanks again for everything. I will definitely take some course and learn how to do this all myself after the Ride for Heart.

  19. #19
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    You could try going to Bike Pirates. from their site

    Bike Pirates in an autonomous organization whose mission is to empower cyclists and make bicycles more accessible. Volunteer-run and volunteer-organized, Bike Pirates provides a Do-It-Yourself workspace to the members of the community and supports the concepts of bicycle re-use, collective decision making, and social justice.

    How We Achieve Our Mission
    We provide low cost bikes and parts to the community
    All of our bikes and the majority of our parts are donated. Our volunteers fix them up and return them to the public at affordable prices or by donation. Selling affordable, refurbished bikes not only diverts old bicycles from the garbage stream, but also makes bicycles more financially accessible, helping put more cyclists on the streets of Toronto.

    We provide mechanical instruction to cyclists on a drop-in basis

    We work with the principle of Do-It-Yourself but that doesn't mean we expect you to know how to fix your bike. We are here to teach and we heartily welcome users with little or no previous knowledge about bike mechanics. You can stop by and learn whatever you want or need to know during any of our regular hours. We provide Trans & Women Only Hours on Sundays to help create an accessible learning environment for everyone.

    http://bikepirates.com/

  20. #20
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    If you have trouble getting your rear wheel on and off, go to a shop and ask them to show you how to do it in a stand.

    If you're still having trouble, you might find its easier with the bike upside down, so the wheel falls gently into the frame. be aware that you might leave some scratches in your seat and shifters/brake levers where they touch the ground.

    Always make sure the chain is not looped up anywhere. follow the path of the chain around the front chainrings, into the derailleur and back to the chainrings again (w/ wheel off bike), and if its not a simple loop plus the bend through the derailleurs, then you may need to fiddle around with it to get it back to where its supposed to be.

    When you put your wheel in, make sure that you have the cassette (rear gears) positioned so part of the chain is below and part is above.

  21. #21
    Lemmy Rules!
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtx View Post
    Something else did come up - I was test riding the changes and my chain snapped in half....he was king enough to repair the broken link and now all seems good!

    Your chain breaking is its way of telling you "hey MTX, it's time for a new chain",. You might want to consider replacing the chain before it breaks in another spot and leaves you stranded somewhere. Of course, the problem with this is that your rear cogset may be worn as well , as might the front rings, which will make the chain skip, so you might have to replace some or all of your drivetrain as well. It's a sad fact of mountainbiking that if you spent a lot of time riding on dirt and mud, grit gets into everything and eventually makes it wear out, no matter how fastidiously you clean your bike. This is one of the reasons I ride a singlespeed - waaaaaay less maintenance.

    If you're not going to replace the chain just yet, do me a favour and promise me thatyou will go to a bike store and buy a "missing link" which is essentially a chain link that splits in half so you can use it to reconnect the chain if it does break at an inconvenient time (is there ever a convenient time to repair a chain, other than, of course when your friend is over at your house helping you but you won't get that lucky twice). MEC sells them, and I think they are made by SRAM. You will also need a chain tool for this.

    I bet that course at Bike Pirates is looking better all the time, eh?.
    Strava made me do it....

  22. #22
    namagomi
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    Chain breakage is often a cause sudden forward and downward motion of testicles and other things you enjoy into the stem... you are warned!

    Those chains only cost $30ish

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