Bike Repair Principles

Refurbishing this bike inspired this post.
  1. Take as many photos as you can. You'll think you'll remember how parts go back together. You won't.
  2. Keep your tools together and set them down together in the same space every time. Avoid time spent walking around looking for your tools.
  3. Check your pockets before doing laundry. Screws don't sound good bouncing around the dryer.
  4. Fix one system at a time to keep the bike rideable.
  5. Order all the parts you need in advance, preferably from your LBS.
  6. Brakes > Steering > Drivetrain. Being able to stop is more important than being able to go.
  7. Bike maintenance keeps the moving parts moving and the nonmoving parts not moving. Keep your chain lubed but don't get any on your rims.
  8. Put a tarp down. There's nothing worse than losing a hard-to-replace part on the floor.
  9. The bike wants to go back together; don't force anything to go together. Forcing things to come apart is okay.
  10. Righty-tighty, lefty-loosey, unless you're a pedal.
  11. Don't be frustrated at slow progress if you don't repair many bikes.
  12. Bike repair is 1/2 having the right tools, 1/2 having the right knowledge, and 1/2 figuring out how to hold three parts with two hands.
  13. Don't be afraid to have a pro check your work.

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