Very basic introduction to the bits on your bike, how to do simple maintenance and how and where the pros go riding.

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Dates 19 September 2013 – 13 November 2013
Time spent reading 1 hour, 50 minutes
Highlights 19
Comments 1
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tyres are a pretty complicated topic. In basic terms you trade-off rolling resistance against longevity

we tend to put new rubber on after 1,500 miles or so. Many riders can get 3,000 miles out of a set (the back tyre will wear quicker than the front) but by that stage chances are that they’ll be in a bit of a state

For purposes of illustration we will look at Shimano SPD-SL pedals. These are ideal pedals for the introduction into ‘clipless’ cycling.

As some ebook readers aren’t yet all that hot for displaying complex images here is a link to our website where we have uploaded the Maintenance Schedule in higher resolution

Andrew Doran Andrew Doran

Very thoughtful!

You’ll not need to lubricate the cogs and chainring if you have properly lubricated the chain.

This is a complicated subject which we will dive into detail on but for even more in-depth discussion we recommend a visit to Sheldon Brown’s brilliant website.

It is worth pointing out that washing with high pressure hoses can force water exactly where you don’t want it.

We recommend Lennard Zinn’s brilliant Zinn And The Art Of Road Bike Maintenance as the best reference book out there - 424 big pages packed full of information for more detailed maintenance tasks.

Whilst we’ll look at various options on what to wear our simple advice is this - embrace the lycra.

If you watch a Time Trial you’ll notice that the riders are all wearing aerodynamic helmets. Though expensive these are available to all of us but unless you are pretty quick and training on a Time Trial bike then you’ll look a bit of an ass wearing one.

As well as easy conversation riding in a close group has the added advantage of the slipstream effect with the riders ahead creating a vacuum which pulls you along. The effect is thought to be as much as a 30% reduction if the effort you need to keep that pace.

Thor Hushovd reached 69mph on the descent of the Col d’Aubisque on his way to winning Stage 13 of the 2011 Tour de France.

Just enjoy the riding - life isn’t a race for all of us.

Skilled and experienced riders will only use the rear brake in particular circumstances and rely on their front brake for as much as 95% of their braking.

Unnecessary wear on the chain and gears can be avoided if you don’t ‘cross chain’.

Cycling out of the saddle will normally lead to an instant increase in your cadence or pedal spinning speed and this can make the bike harder to control if the gear is too low for out of the saddle cycling. Try actually going up a gear right before you get out of the saddle.

First of all when you have your turn at the front don’t pick up speed. Some riders feel they have to show they are making an effort but this isn’t needed. If you maintain the group’s speed you’ll be making an effort enough.

Sportive - also known as a Cyclosportive or in North America as a Gran Fondo. Sportives are non competitive organised events taking place on regular roads.

The L’Etape Du Tour is possibly the premium Sportive in the world - taking in a stage of the year’s Tour de France.