What's a good bike repair reference?

Jack Tyler

Active Member
I haven't found a discussion on bike repair books here (so far...) and would welcome a recommendation or two. Using Amazon 'Look Inside' feature to view Tables of Contents and sample sections, I was impressed with Tom Cuthburtson's Anybody's Bike Book, I notice that Park Tool has a repair reference (no glimpses available inside), and Chris Sidwell's Bicycle Repair Manual has very good review ratings. I'm looking for a good blend of illustrations & clear pics. Probably too much to expect it would tackle the electrical components of ebikes...but wouldn't that be nice! Thanks, everyone.

Ann M.

Well-Known Member
Nah, books about the electronic parts of bikes would be outdated too soon ;), however, various manufacturers do have some info on their specific websites. There's the more broad based EBCC (Electric Bicycle Competency Center) which has extensive information on Izips, Haibikes, Raleighs, Diamonback and many other brands along with actual people that you can call via Currie Tech's customer service line, 800-377-4532.

For basic bike stuff, there are a lot of decent videos on Youtube, just do a basic search or one of my favorite references, particularly for older components, internal hubs, etc. is Sheldon Brown's website; this guy knows something about almost everything bike or knows where to refer you!


Well-Known Member
I have the following two, although in truth I never look at either, preferring instead to choose carefully from YouTube. I say carefully, as just like a forum, the advice can be pretty mixed.



A few more are listed here. http://www.cyclingweekly.co.uk/group-tests/bicycle-maintenance-books-seven-of-the-best-20996

As Anne has already said, the late Shedon Brown's site is the best resource out there.

Jack Tyler

Active Member
Some may think it's the cart before the horse to seek out bike repair books before buying the bike. I've found the opposite. Discussions about typical repairs - their simplicity or complexity; their likelihood and causes - have helped me better understand the consequences of the choices I will make about a bike's design and hardware components. And it's brought me into the 21st century from my dated 20th century experiences, making me a better equipped buyer. I found great value in Cuthbertson's Anybody's Bike Book (a moldy but a goody, and enjoyably readable in the Ten Speed Press style) and Allwood's Maintaining Mountain Bikes, most especially its many excellent color pics illustrating every repair. It also helped that it was relatively new. Both were available at the local library. A third impressive choice was Eddie's mention of Park Tool's Big Blue Book of Bicycle Repair. Haven't seen a copy yet but I was impressed with its currency, the apparent completeness of its content, and its reasonable price. Also gotta appreciate their instructional on-line videos!

Beyond that, EBCC was an excellent referral - thanks, Ann. I was very impressed to step down from brand to model to 'known issues' (as an example) and see the illustrated steps to address them. Since I'm unsure what kind of LBS support I can expect in my small Montana city, that resource alone made me rethink several Diamondback and iZip choices. Good stuff.
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Well-Known Member
when I was 16 and about to take my first kids only 500 mile bike trip, we went to the adult school (HS classes taught at night) and took a bicycle repair class.

Learned by actually performing the following repairs over 6 weeks: spoked and trued a wheel, remove and replace crank, headset, brakes, tires, gears, cables and so on.

Once you take the course you understand what tools are needed for long trips or just to have in the garage.

Today most repair instructions can be found on YouTube, and some of them are excellent.

If it were me, I'd get some people together and give the LBS money to teach you all.

Electric bikes are a different beast. Most of them are cheap chinese bicycles with Chinese electricals.

my motto is always buy a quality bike, and you'll have it for a lifetime.

Reddy Kilowatt

Well-Known Member
I've found Zinn and the Art of Mountain Bike Maintenance and Park's Big Blue Book of Bicycle Repair to both be useful.


Well-Known Member
Years ago I bought "Break it, Fix it, Ride it" - interactive cdrom that I'd be lost without :)