Bikes in the Stand

I had four of my five bikes in the work stand last night. It just got to be one of those seasons (it happens a couple times a year) when I've run nearly all of my bikes into the ground without giving them the attention they need. One night of greasy hands and it can all be taken care of. But for whatever reason, it's easy to neglect.

The Long Haul Trucker was only running seven of available twenty four gears and the rear brake was nearly useless. Twenty minutes in the stand and we're all good.

The Xtracycle had hit a bump (and by bump, I mean deep chasm) that knocked both fenders out of place and they were rubbing the tires. Fenders seem like a peripheral in bike maintenance. But they're difficult to get centered for maximum coverage and visual appeal. It also knocked the quill stem loose. But a mere twenty minutes in the stand was enough to get it back to 100%.

The single speed Cross Check had a mysterious tear in the tire sidewall a couple months back. To my chagrin, my only remaining sets of 700c tires were two sets of cyclocross tires. I took the least aggressive of the two sets and put them on the Cross Check. But when you go from a 25mm width to a 36mm width, you are going to get some rub on the fenders. So, there was one more bike I was neglecting. This one took some finagling to get it to work. The old fenders really didn't want to cooperate with the more plump rubber. Eventually, nearly thirty minutes or so, everything was spinning again.

Lastly, I needed to replace the front shifter cable on the Troll. I took a tumble into a tree on my last mountain bike camping trip and it rendered the cable useless. It's been stuck on the small chainring for a month. It worked, which made it harder to motivate myself to fix it. But, hey, if I've got the goods to run a 3x9, let's do it. A quick cable replacement (less than ten minutes) and the Troll was shifting beautifully again.

It's funny to wait so long. But when you've got multiple bikes in the garage, it's easy to just grab a different one if another isn't in tip-top shape. The only problem is when they all begin to falter. After last night, though, I'll be in good shape for a while.

Get out there.


  1. I'm the same way. At any one time three of my five bikes always need some kind of maintenance it seems. I've learned to do most of my own work over the last 10 years. Although I save money and get a lot of satisfaction doing it myself, I can't say I love to work on bikes.

    Right now the Pugsley needs new brake cables and housings, the Cross Check needs new brake pads and a serious cleaining, the Ellis hasn't been cleaned once this year, and the Xtracycle needs a good drivetrain cleaning.

    1. Bicycle cleaning? I've never even gotten that far!

      You make an interesting point about not "enjoying" it. I wish that I looked forward to it. But even though I'm satisfied when it's done, I never seem to want to make it happen.

  2. Oh, don't I know it. With three bikes, I'm like you and would just as soon avoid any maintenance if I have an available bike to ride.

    1. Is there such thing as a disposable bike? :)