How To Tune Up Road Bike: Enhance the Performance of Your Bike
A road bike needs a plenty of maintenance job. When things are getting slow and you are not feeling the same speed as before, the bike requires tuning up in a right way.
Bike tuning up process is basically a mixture of several steps. The core reason for applying such fine-tuning is getting the previous and fresh taste while riding the bike.
The durability and smoothness are also renewed after an appropriate fine-tuning session. Some riders prefer taking the bike to a repairing shop for the tuning.
We suggest saving some money by doing everything at home. In general, the tuning up can cost more than $50. Save this money and bring the tools to your garage for doing it on a regular basis. It can not only increase your savings but also will make you expert on this very task.
The fine-tuning procedure begins with the cleaning process of the road bike. Locate the most used areas of the bike. For example, the chain and gears of the road bike are used more than any other parts. Clean them properly. Add some chain lube and increase the smoothness of the gear cassettes.
Check whether the brake is okay or not. If you feel a little softness, make some adjustments.
Use an Allen wrench to reduce the effort for brake adjustment. Look for mud in spikes and wheels. Clean every spike carefully. Wash the whole road bike. Adjust loosened bolts and screws. Polish with a soft sandpaper.
This is the whole tune up process in a nutshell. Every part requires cleaning, rearranging and polishing. Some may require replacing. The following discussion will help you in getting details idea about the tune-up procedure.
When Will You Know The Road Bike is Not Tuned Up?
Regular riding on a road bike creates some wears and tears. Eventually, the speed of the bike starts reducing. At the same time, you will start hearing some sounds from different parts of the road bike. These are the indications that the bike is running out of driving condition. It is time to give a proper tuning.
Also, if you love riding on your road bike, it is possible that you will want to keep it as long as possible. The body parts of a road bike are mostly metal. There are risks of getting fragile and stained. A tune-up session can solve these problems within a short time. And, you can continue riding with enjoyment.
What Will You Need for Tuning the Road Bike?
Road bikes tune-up process has several parts. Every part requires different tools and apparatus. Though these are not expensive, you may want to gather them for a long-term use. The prerequisites are given in the following:
- Chain Lube
- Washing liquid
- Paper towel
- Pumping adapter
- Allen wrench
- Dry cloths
Gather all the items in your garage to start the procedure.
Tuning Up Process: Step by Step
The whole process will take less than 3 hours to complete. You can choose a weekend for making it happen. Make sure there is a hose water pipe around. Keep the bike near the water for reducing your effort. Then, follow the steps described below:
Step 1: Chain Cleaning and Lubricating
Clean the chain with a dry cloth. Now, put some degreaser on it. Rub the chain properly. Backpedal without removing the cloth from the surface.
It will remove 70% of the greased oils. To remove the rest 30%, make a sandwich with two nailbrushes. Keep the chain in the middle and backpedal slowly.
The plastic spikes of the nailbrushes will remove the rest of the greases. Finally, add some washing liquid in a bucket. Take it with a sponge and wash the chain carefully. Rinse it and your chain will shine again.
Step 2: Gears Cleaning
Gears are quite difficult to open. You need to use a plastic toothbrush to get inside the cassettes.
Remove dust and mud from the cassettes. Rinse it with water. Soften the mud and clean it properly.
Step 3: Brake Adjustment
After some continuous uses, brakes become soft and lose the grip. Check the brake pads to identify either they have perished or not. If you find them completely unusable, simply buy another pair for replacing.
If not, adjust the brakes with an Allen wrench. Loosen the brake adjuster lever. Pull out the cable until the friction between the pads and the tire surface gets strong enough. Then, tighten the bolt for maximum adjustment. Done!
Step 4: Pump the Tires
Check the PSI of the bike tires of your road bike. If you find the tires deflated, use the pumping procedure. Check the valves.
For Presta valves, open the cap and click on the springy stem. Set the nozzle of the pumper. Start pushing the pumper until the PSI matches.
Step 5: Headsets and Pedals
The neck of the road bike gets bent when you forget to tighten the bolt. Fix the headset using the Allen wrench. Keep it straight and adjust the pedals horizontally with the front wheel.
There is a risk of loosened pedals. Tightening the pedal bolts will be really helpful in this manner. If you have a broken pedal, this can be injurious to your foot and muscles. Replace it as soon as possible.
Step 6: Spikes and Wheels
Wet the wheels using the hose water. Wait for a few minutes for softening mud.
Polish each of the spikes carefully with soft sandpaper. Use nailbrushes for cleaning the wheel surface. Rinse it finally.
Step 7: Give a Final Wash
Make the whole bike wet with water. Use a sponge and washing liquid for rubbing every part of the bike. Don’t leave any place untouched.
Rinse the whole road bike and let it dry in sunlight. Apply additional lube on the chain and cassettes. Use a dry cloth for removing water from the parts.
The above seven steps should be completed attentively. It will make your road bike look new again. Also, the performance will astonish you!
The speed and durability can be increased with a proper tuning up process completion.
Precautions for Tuning Up the Road Bike
The lubes that you are going to use for the tuning up require being high quality. You should purchase prominent branded lubes. The degreaser has to be biodegradable in order to avoid odor.
Also, try to recycle the brushes and sponge. The clothes have to be burnt or destroyed. Plastic materials can be recycled after the process. In short, keep the environment clean after cleaning your road bike and tuning it up for the next use.
How Do You Feel About The Process?
Was it helpful for taking care of your road bike?
This fine-tuning is basically a performance enhancement procedure. You can do every part at home without taking help from a professional.
Follow this guideline and inform us of your experience.
Leave your experience, comments or suggestion in the following section. Enjoy the next ride on your tuned road bike.