Routine Maintenance

#1
As I approach 100 miles ( I'm a "Joy rider" not a commuter) I wonder what I should be doing.
I noticed on a recent ride that I could hear the chain more than usual.
Should I be adjusting? Lubricating? How?
Should I be checking spokes? How?
Should I leave it alone and wait for my 200 mile Well Bike Visit to my LeBS?
I don't want to be that guy who has to go to his dealer for everything :rolleyes:
 
#2
By the time you notice an increase in chain noise, the chain is already overdue for lubrication. You shouldn't wait any longer. Stop by your LBS and ask what chain lube they recommend for your style of riding and get some tips on how to apply it. Also ask them for a chain stretch gauge so you can check your chain wear yourself and know when to replace your chain.

You might also want to read this article:

https://www.sheldonbrown.com/chains.html

Take good heed of the section regarding the religious aspect of chain lubrication and maintenance (and note the author has his own particular brand of religion).

The main thing is to keep your chain lubed with something reasonable, it will last far longer that way!
 
#3
By the time you notice an increase in chain noise, the chain is already overdue for lubrication. You shouldn't wait any longer. Stop by your LBS and ask what chain lube they recommend for your style of riding and get some tips on how to apply it. Also ask them for a chain stretch gauge so you can check your chain wear yourself and know when to replace your chain.

You might also want to read this article:

https://www.sheldonbrown.com/chains.html

Take good heed of the section regarding the religious aspect of chain lubrication and maintenance (and note the author has his own particular brand of religion).

The main thing is to keep your chain lubed with something reasonable, it will last far longer that way!
Yikes! Sheldon does have religion when it comes to chains doesn't he?
 

Figs

Active Member
#4
I use Blaster dry lube from Lowe’s. It’s cheap and over decades of road biking I always get 5000+ miles out of a chain. I lube every 100 miles. Doing the same with my Ui6, and with over 2,400 miles have no issues.
 
#5
I commute about 100 miles a week on my Metro+, and just hit 1400 miles. I lubricate the chain once a month or so. Chains are cheap and they rarely fail, just stretch out too much. Don't stress over the chain. Just lube it and move on.

Since I broke a rear spoke at 900 miles or so, I've been checking the spoke tension every month or so as well. I normally have to tighten a few on the rear each time. The front has been mostly fine once I adjusted them all. My LBS stated to use 30 on chain side and 25 on non chain side on rear wheel (using the scale on a Park Tools TM-1). The front is set to 25 IIRC.

Ask your LBS when it's in. The TM-1 is $60 or so and easy to use, they can probably show you how to do it and confirm the tension amount that is correct for your bike.
 
#6
I lubricate the chain once a month or so. Chains are cheap and they rarely fail, just stretch out too much. Don't stress over the chain. Just lube it and move on.
Important to note that chain stretch causes wear of the rear cassette and front chain wheel, which will eventually cause shifting and slippage problems. These problems can be very pronounced when a new chain is installed, due to the mechancial mismatch between the new chain and worn gears. Many a cyclist has learned this the hard way! The only cure at that point is to install a new cassette and chainwheel. Since cassettes and chain wheels are expensive parts, and relatively difficult to replace, it is worthwhile to buy an inexpensive chain stretch gauge and check the chain at every lubrication. Takes about 10 seconds but it can save a lot of bucks over the long haul. If chains are religiously replaced at the .5% stretch limit, you can go through 10 or more chains before there's enough wear on the gears to warrant replacement. That is a lot of riding!
 
#7
Important to note that chain stretch causes wear of the rear cassette and front chain wheel, which will eventually cause shifting and slippage problems. These problems can be very pronounced when a new chain is installed, due to the mechancial mismatch between the new chain and worn gears. Many a cyclist has learned this the hard way! The only cure at that point is to install a new cassette and chainwheel. Since cassettes and chain wheels are expensive parts, and relatively difficult to replace, it is worthwhile to buy an inexpensive chain stretch gauge and check the chain at every lubrication. Takes about 10 seconds but it can save a lot of bucks over the long haul. If chains are religiously replaced at the .5% stretch limit, you can go through 10 or more chains before there's enough wear on the gears to warrant replacement. That is a lot of riding!
Good point! I’ll be acquiring a chain stretch gauge and will start checking monthly with the spike tension. Thanks!
 
#8
As it turns out, my chain is at 0.5% stretch but not quite at the 0.75% stretch per the Park took gauge. So, I've ordered a new chain. I'm at 1340 miles and probably should have changed it around 1,200 or so. I'll start checking it monthly with the spoke tension. Thanks to Drew for the tip!