RSS

Tag Archives: repair

Park Tool PCS-10 Home Mechanic Repair Stand

Eleven years ago I bought a Park Tool PCS-9 Home Mechanic Bicycle Repair Stand so I could work on my bike in my garage. The PCS-9 is an “entry-level” repair stand that is sturdy and very reliable, but a lot of things have changed in the past eleven years—I now own five bikes and though I am not a trained mechanic I do a lot more work on my bikes than I used to (last year I even rebuilt on old mountain bike and with all new parts). I kept waiting for the PCS-9 to either break or wear out so I would have an excuse to get a better stand, but I finally gave up on that every happening and just gave it to a young female cyclist I often ride with and then bought a new Park Tool PCS-10 Home Mechanic Repair Stand.

Park Tool Park Tool PCS-10 Home Mechanic Repair Stand

Park Tool Park Tool PCS-10 Home Mechanic Repair Stand

You probably already know that your bicycle chain needs oiled after every 100 miles of use—and more often if you ride in inclement weather. You are far more likely to keep your bike clean and your chain lubed if you own a good bicycle repair stand. After every bike ride I put whatever bike I was using in the repair stand and use an air compressor to blow the dust off the chain and from around the brake pads. Then I take a piece of cotton cloth (from an old T-shirt) and wipe off the tires (I am actually looking from pieces of broken glass in the tire). About 100 miles or so I oil the chain, cables and pivot points. This process only takes a couple of minutes—but it sure keeps the bikes in great shape!

Cam-type Clamp On The Park Tool Park Tool PCS-10 Home Mechanic Repair Stand

Cam-type Clamp On The Park Tool Park Tool PCS-10 Home Mechanic Repair Stand

The PCS-10 has all of features of the older PCS-9, but has been improved to set-up and take-down a lot faster—and it has a far better clamping system than the older model. The PCS-10 has a cam-type clamp that allows you to quickly clamp your bike with the proper pressure—even if it is something as awkward as a recumbent or a bike with odd-shaped tubing.

Park Tool Work Tray For Repair Stands

Park Tool Work Tray For The PCS-10 Repair Stand

If you purchase the PCS-10 I would strongly suggest you also buys a Park Tool Work Tray—an accessory rack that fit on the repair stand (the tray retails for around $34). This work tray has a storage bin on one side that will hold several cans of lube and a towel rack on the other side. Since the tray mounts right on the repair stand you will have quick access to your tools and small parts.

Park Tool Park Tool PCS-10 Home Mechanic Repair Stand

Park Tool Park Tool PCS-10 Home Mechanic Repair Stand

The height of the Park Tool PCS-10 Home Mechanic Repair Stand can be adjusted from 39″ to 57″ (99cm to 145cm) and the screw clamp will adjust to fit tubes from 7/8″ to 3″ (24mm to 76mm). Park Tool claims that this model can hold up to 100 pounds (45 kg), providing the weight is centered over the legs. I’ve used this repair stand on everything from my featherweight Trek Doman Carbon Fiber Endurance Bike to my behemoth Surly Necromancer Pugsley Fat Bike without any trouble. The PCS-10 can be folded down for easy storage, but once I set mine up in the garage I have only moved it a couple of times just to clean the area under it.

Park Tool Park Tool PCS-10 Home Mechanic Repair Stand

The Decals On The PCS-10 Are In A Bad Spot!

The only thing I don’t like about this stand is the decals on the legs of the stand—when you are working on your bike all the oil and solvent you use will drip directly onto the decals. Not only does it make the decals look pretty ugly, but if you use any solvent on your bike it is going to drip on the decals and make them peel and eventually fall off. I realize this is a really minor complaint, but I am one of those guys who likes my shop to sparkle when I am finished cleaning things up!

The Park Tool PCS-10 Home Mechanic Repair Stand retails for around $200. This is a quality piece of merchandise that should last for many years to come—so when your kids finally ship you off to the nursing home you can give this repair stand to your grandchildren!

 
 

Tags: , , , , ,

Serfas CK-1 Combo Kit 1 (Product Review and Giveaway)

Even if you don’t have a clue about how to repair a flat tire or make minor adjustments to your bike, you really need to carry a tire repair kit, tire pump and mini-tool with you on every ride. You might not know what to do with the tools, but usually someone with offer to help you—but without the right tools you might have a long walk home. The folks at Serfas recently sent me one of their basic repair kits, the Serfas CK-1 Combo Kit 1, to review. This kit includes the items needed to repair about 90% of the problems you are likely to have on a normal bike ride. If you would like a chance to win this kit just keep reading!

Serfas CK-1 Combo Kit 1

Serfas CK-1 Combo Kit 1

The tire pump in this kit is the Serfas BS-1D Big Stick Pump and it normally retails for $18. This pump is 11″ long (17″ with the handle extended) and works with both Presta and Schrader valves. The pump should be able to inflate your tires up to 110 psi, but, like most air pumps, anything over 100 psi requires a bit of work. This pump weights just a little over 7 ounces (205 grams) and will easily attach to your seat tube with the included mounting bracket. The handle on this pump folds out and makes it very easy to grip.

Serfas BS-1D Big Stick Pump

Serfas BS-1D Big Stick Pump

This kit includes a small mini-tool that includes seven Allen keys (2mm, 2.5mm, 3mm, 4mm, 5mm, 6mm, 8mm), a Phillips screwdriver and a Torx wrench (mainly used for disc brakes). If you are in need of mini-tool with a with a wider selection of tools I would strongly suggest the Serfas ST-17i CO² Inflator / Mini-tool (the best all-round mini-tool I’ve ever seen).

Bicycle Mini-Tool

Bicycle Mini-Tool

The tire repair kit is rather generic—a lot of companies sell nearly identical kits. This one includes two tire levers, four patches and a small tube of patch glue. There is also a small piece of sandpaper that is used to scruff up the area around the puncture before you apply the glue. The only thing missing here is a small piece of chalk (I don’t know of company that includes it with their tire repair kits, but they should). When you are trying to find the puncture in a deflated tire you first need to partially inflate the tube and then feel your way around the tube until you find the leak—and once you find it a piece of chalk makes it real easy to mark the location (if you don’t mark it well when the tube is inflated it will be very difficult to find once you let the air out).

Bicycle Tie Repair Kit

Bicycle Tie Repair Kit

Also included in this kit is a medium-sized saddle bag (6″ long x 4″ wide x 4.5″ tall). This bag is also expandable—just unzip the bottom zipper and the bag becomes a whopping 6″ tall! Even with the expandable bottom closed there is enough room for the tire repair kit, mini-tool, one MTB tire (or two road tires), your ID and a bit of cash with room to spare. This bag also has a key ring holder inside so won’t risk loosing your car keys every time you open the bag. The bag attaches to your bike with two Velcro straps—one strap goes around the seat post and the other around the rails of your saddle. One more thing: there is a piece of 3M Scotchbrite Reflective Trim all the way around the saddle (something I wish all saddles had).

Serfas Medium Saddle Bag

Serfas Medium Saddle Bag (Note The Key Ring Holder)

Serfas CK-1 Combo Kit 1 retails for $40 and is available from the Serfas website or from an authorized Serfas retailer (most bike shops and REI stores).

Regular readers know that I seldom keep the products that are sent to me for review. If you would like a chance  to win this Serfas CK-1 Combo Kit 1 then leave a comment below telling me why you need it. The contest ends at midnight (CST) on Friday, July 5, 2013. After the contest closes I will read through the comments and choose a winner based solely on my subjective mood at the time. I won’t respond to the comments left below, but I promise to read and consider every one of them. This contest is for U.S. residents only and only one entry per household allowed. I will send this product to the winner via U.S. Mail at my expense. Good luck!

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

My Two Favorite Bicycle Chain Lubricants

White Lightning Clean Ride Self-Cleaning Wax Lube

White Lightning Clean Ride

At this time of year many folks will be getting back on their bikes for the first time in months. First, welcome back—we’ve missed you out on the road all winter. Second, you probably need to lube your bike chain before you hit the road again. There are a lot of great chain lubricants on the market and today I’d like to tell you about the two I use.

Several years ago a local bike shop recommended White Lightning Clean Ride Self-Cleaning Bicycle Lubricant to me and this amazing product keeps my chains looking brand new even after 2,000 miles of use. White Lightning Clean Ride is a liquid wax that goes on wet and dries rather quickly. This lube is “self-cleaning” which means that once the chain dries the wax lube “sheds” off your chain as it gets dirty.

Before applying Clean Ride for the first time you need to start with a very clean chain since the wax will not mix well with the oil that might already be on your chain. I have found that White Lightning Clean Streak Degreaser works extremely well for this purpose. Once your chain is clean, just pour Clean Ride on the chain as you turn it, let it sit for a few minutes and then wipe off the excess. I use a small air compressor to blow the dirt off of my chain after every ride and I re-apply the Clean Ride about every 100 miles. If you don’t have an air compressor just use a small cotton cloth (an old T-shirt) to wipe off the dirt after each ride. You will find that dirt, sand and road grime does not stick to your chain once you start using Clean Ride. This means you are not going to have globs of oil flying off of your chain if you get caught out in the rain. Clean Ride retails for around $10.00 for a 4 ounce bottle. I think I have seen White Lightning Clean Ride at every bike shop I’ve ever been in, so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding it.

Boeshield T-9 Waterproof Lubricant

Boeshield T-9

While White Lightning Clean Ride is fantastic for most purposes, I prefer to use Boeshield T-9 on my winter bikes and the ones I use for riding in the rain. The first time I saw a can of Boeshield T-9 in a bike shop I was a bit surprised because I already had several cans of it in my garage but had never even thought of using it on my bikes. I live between Chicago and Milwaukee and all of my woodworking tools are stored in an unheated garage, so to keep them from rusting I spray them with Boeshield T-9. I also use it on my snow-blower. My favorite use for it had always been on my table saw—not only did it keep the table from rusting, but it provided an extremely slick surface for the wood to slide over.

Boeshield T-9 was developed by The Boeing Company (the folks who make those pretty planes). This product has a solvent and paraffin wax base and uses neither Silicone or Teflon. The solvent penetrates deep through other lubricants, but I would recommend you clean the surface first before you use Boeshield T-9 if for no other reason than it looks better that way. Boeshield T-9 dries quickly, but it is best to let it dry for a couple of hours before wiping off the excess. This will leave you with an incredible barrier against rain, mud, snow, ice, salt and road grime. The bike I reserve for riding in the rain is coated with this stuff! My winter bike is fed a steady diet of ice and road salt, but it still looks great because of the protection Boeshield T-9 provides. Boeshield T-9 is suitable for use on derailleurs, brake cables, pivot points and the chain.

Boeshield T-9 is available in different sizes, from one ounce bottles up to gallon containers, and in aerosol cans. Regardless of what form you buy it in, Boeshield T-9 has exactly the same formula. The 12-ounce aerosol can retails for $18.

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

Park Tool VP-1 Vulcanizing Patch Kit

Unless your bicycle tires are made of solid rubber you are going to get a flat tire—maybe not this month, nor even this year, but you will get a flat. When I get a flat while out on a ride I use a self-adhesive tube patch so I can get back on the bike as soon as possible. These self adhesive patches are easy to apply: just roughen the tube a bit with sandpaper, wipe off the dust, then apply the patch. I’ve used these patches several times while on the road and they have always gotten me home safely. However, these patches do not hold nearly as well as those that use a vulcanizing solvent. Therefore, once I get home I always replace a self-adhesive patch with a Park Tool Vulcanizing Patch.

Park Tool VP-1 Vulcanizing Patch Kit

Park Tool VP-1 Vulcanizing Patch Kit

The Park Tool VP-1 Vulcanizing Patch Kit has four 25mm round patches, two 25mmx35mm oval patches, self-vulcanizing fluid, and sandpaper—all stored in a plastic box that measures 2.75″x1.5″x.75″. The instructions for use are printed on the inside of the box. To use these patches you need to roughen up tube with the included sandpaper and wipe off the dust. Then spread a thin layer of the self-vulcanizing fluid around the area you want to repair and allow it to dry before you apply the patch. Once the patch comes in contact with the self-vulcanizing fluid it will bond to the tube at the molecular level—this patch is permanent and good for the life of the tube.

The Park Tool VP-1 Vulcanizing Patch Kit retails for under $3 and is available at just about every bike shop in the United States. If you visit the sporting goods section at Walmart or Target you will see products similar to this one—and some of them actually work. However, the only patches I use are the ones from Park Tool.

 
29 Comments

Posted by on February 22, 2013 in Bicycle Repair, Product Reviews

 

Tags: , , , ,

Park Tool AWS-10 Fold-up Hex Wrench Set

I carry several different brands of multi-tools in the saddle bags of my bikes, but when I am working on a bike in my garage I prefer to use products made by Park Tool Company. In fact, if you scroll to the bottom of the “My Bikes” page you will see that my garage almost looks like a Park Tool showroom. On the wall in my work area I have a set of Park Tool P-Handle Hex Wrenches and they are the wrenches I use when I need to apply a lot of torque, but most of the time when I need a hex wrench I use the Park Tool AWS-10 Fold-up Hex Wrench Set.

Park Tool AWS-10 Fold-up Hex Wrench Set

Park Tool AWS-10 Fold-up Hex Wrench Set

The Park Tool AWS-10 Fold-up Hex Wrench Set has seven hex wrenches (1.5mm, 2mm, 2.5mm, 3mm, 4mm, 5mm, and 6mm) and they are made from Bondhus Protanium, a high quality industrial steel that should give a many years of use. These wrenches have chamfered tips which makes them a pleasure to work with, and the wrenches all fold up into a slip-resistant composite handle. This handle feels very comfortable in your hand and that is probably the reason I like this product so well.

This tool weighs 3.7 ounces (104 grams) and measures 3.75″ long by .75″ tall and 1″ wide. While you could easily carry this with you as you ride I prefer more compact and lighter weight wrench sets for my saddle bags. However, at home when I care more about ease of use that I do weight I prefer this wrench set. In fact, I think you could walk into just about any bike shop in America as see that this is the tool most bike shop mechanics carry in their apron pockets.

The Park Tool AWS-10 Fold-up Hex Wrench Set retails for under $9 and is available at most bike shops. If your local shop does not carry this product they can easily order it for you—or you can visit Amazon.com and order it yourself.

 
 

Tags: , , , ,

Fix It Sticks Lightweight Bicycle Multi-tool

A few years ago when I started writing reviews for cycling products I determined that I would never talk about a product that was not already commercially available. However, today I am going to break that rule for the first time so I can tell you about one of the coolest new cycling products I’ve seen in a long time—Fix It Sticks. A few weeks ago Brian Davis, the inventor of Fix It Sticks, sent me a fully functional “stage two” prototype of his patent pending creation. Davis just had his project accepted by Kickstarter, a Web-based program for funding creative projects (more about this at the end of the article).

Prototype Of The Fix It Sticks Bicycle Multi-tool

Prototype Of Fix It Sticks Bicycle Multi-tool

The basic idea behind Fix It Sticks is that most cyclists don’t want (or need) to carry a lot of repair tools with them, so Fix It Sticks just offer the bare essential tools for roadside repair (a flathead screwdriver and three Allen wrenches). The unique design of Fix It Sticks provides for a very lightweight tool (less than 50 grams) and it doesn’t take up much more room than a pack of gum (they are only 4″ long)! However, the real advantage of Fix It Sticks is that when you put the two pieces together it gives you a handle that provides an incredible amount of leverage—you can apply more torque with this tool than you can with just about any other cycling multi-tool on the market. This compact tool is constructed of high-quality aluminum and has steel bits for durability.

Fix It Sticks Offer Incredible Leverage

Fix It Sticks Offer Incredible Leverage

I don’t know how Davis is going to advertise this product in the future, but it ought to appeal to two main groups of cyclists. First, female cyclists will love the leverage this product offers—there are times when I don’t think even a muscle-bound weightlifter could get an old Allen bolt to budge, but Fix It Sticks will make the job a lot easier—even if you don’t have bulging biceps. The second group that is going to love this product will be those Roadies who are overly concerned about the weight of anything they put on their bike (the Weight Weenies among us).

Fix It Sticks do not come with tire levers at the moment, so you will have to supply your own (but they do have plans to add them in the future). Also, this product does not come with a chain break tool—this is not the end of the world since most cyclists don’t know how to use them anyway. Just to be clear: I own many cycling multi-tools and the further I go away from home the more tools I want to take with me, especially if I am riding off-road on treacherous terrain. Most cyclists will find Fix It Sticks adequate to meet their needs, but if you need a pedal wrench, Torx wrench and a bottle opener then this product is not for you.

Fix It Sticks As They Appear On Kickstarter

Fix It Sticks As They Appear On Kickstarter

Brian Davis is trying to raise money to start the production of Fix It Sticks. On January 15 his product was accepted by Kickstarter and if enough people pledge to help fund this project then production will start rather quickly. Davis needs $18,000 and about half of that amount was pledged within the first two days. You can donate any amount over $1 to help fund this project, and people who give $25 or more will receive a set of Fit It Sticks when they are manufactured (there are also several other levels of donation and they offer added benefits). Fix It Sticks are machined made in the USA (Appleton, Wisconsin to be exact). And in case you were wondering, I did give to this project—I hate to admit it, but when I’m on my Trek Madone I turn into a Weight Weenie myself. If you would like to donate to this project, or just read more about it, then please see the Fix It Sticks page on Kickstarter.

 
27 Comments

Posted by on January 18, 2013 in Bicycle Repair

 

Tags: , , , ,

Quick Stik Bicycle Tire Changer Tool

I won’t say that I enjoy changing bicycle tires, but it is something that I seem to do a lot of. Not only do I go through a couple sets of tires every year due to normal use, but I also have to swap-out the tires on three of my bikes due to the changing of the seasons (winter tires). Sometimes tires are easy to install or take off by hand, but most of them need a tire lever to help you get the edge of the tire over the rim. This past summer I was talking with the guys at the local bike shop and noticed that all the mechanics used the Quick Stick to change tires, so I bought a pair to try out.

Quick Stik Bicycle Tire Lever

Quick Stik Bicycle Tire Changer Tool

Quick Stiks are made of molded nylon so they won’t scratch your rims or pinch your inner tubes. While no tire lever is going to be perfect for every tire, I believe this is the best all-around tire lever I’ve ever seen. Most people are only going to need a single lever to change a tire (though it wouldn’t hurt to carry a second one just in case).

The Quick Stik is six inches long which makes them longer than the levers you will find in your typical bicycle multi-tool, but smaller that the steel levers some of us have hanging on the wall in the garage. This tire lever has a wonderful grip which makes it so much easier to use than most of the other levers on the market. Weighing in at only 14.2 grams this lever can make even the most ardent Weight Weenie happy. One of the biggest benefits of the Quick Stik is that they will not nick your rims—some metal tire levers will shave off a bit of the rim as you are using them.

I wish I could tell you this lever will work with every tire/rim combo on the market, but that is not the case. Last week I was trying to remove a road bike tire and I couldn’t get it to budge with this lever—but then again, two other brands of tire levers didn’t work either. I think the problem was that the Mavic rim was very narrow and when combined with the Kevlar bead of the tire it seemed like nothing was going to work! Another part of the problem might have been that I had been riding in 19 degree weather and cold tires are always harder to remove—after I let the tires warm up in the garage I was finally able to remove the tire and patch the tube.

The Quick Stik retails for under $6 each and are available at just about any bike shop in North America—you can also find them at places like REI and on Amazon.com. The product is made in the U.S.A. by California Bike Gear. If you use this tool long enough (like daily use in a bike shop) you are going to wear a small grove in the plastic and will have to replace the lever—but at this price that really is not a problem.

 
 

Tags: , , , , ,

 
FreeBibleimages

The Word in Pictures

G2G Fit

"Fitness that adapts stays with you."

Bird and Bicycle

I make. What do you do?

Islam Exposed Online

The Truth About Islam

Tour Divide - Tim & Dave

Helping Break The Cycle of Poverty on 2 Wheels

Mission for Fit

A newlywed fighting fat life forever.

It's A Marathon AND A Sprint

And a 10K and a 200 Mile Bike Ride and an Obstacle Race and Anything Else We Find!

Food for Thought

I sometimes struggle with keeping myself accountable to my nutrition and fitness goals, so I thought if the world is following me then I will be more successful.

SmirkPretty

Eyes ten degrees above the horizon

The Running Thriver

If I can do it, so can you!

BikeHikeSafari

A cycling and hiking journey through the most amazing places on the planet

tiny-trail-mermaid

-like a fish out of water, one must learn to adapt, throw on some trail-runners and run free.

...Faster than Last

“Bones heal, pain is temporary, and chicks dig scars...”

theskinnybitches

2 gymphobes attempt to get fit. Lol.

FitVal

Fitness with a dash of Fun

Globe Drifting

Global issues, travel, photography & fashion. Drifting across the globe; the world is my oyster, my oyster through a lens.

An Amateur Outside

if my ancestors could chase antelope until they died of exhaustion, so can i

Native Nourishment

Nourish your body

fatbeardedandtattooedcyclist's Blog

A great WordPress.com site

Memoirs of the Extraterrestrial Psycho-Cyclist Space Pussies

Official site of Alex Stamas & Tyler Noseworthy's cycling tour from Massachusetts to Key West to San Diego

Cycling My Way

Mike clark - Bristol South C.C

Jenna L. Sexton, PhD

Writer, researcher, perpetual student...

The Limber Lawyer

Because flexibility is power.

" The Obstacle Is The Path "

the drunken cyclist

I have three passions: wine, cycling, travel, family, and math.

Cyclerist

Cycling and stuff

Motivation Not Deprivation

Motivation the "Forever" weight loss solution

Long Distance Cycling Cleveland

We host a series of long distance preparation rides each weekend from February - June in the Cleveland, Ohio area

bwthoughts

copyright 2013 - no reuse without permission ( see bwfiction.wordpress.com for fiction and fantasy )

The Sweat Angel

Sweat. Smile. Repeat.

Real Food Rosie

Loving & Nourishing my Body with Real, Whole Foods

My Wifely Adventures

Living for Christ, learning to be a wife, and enjoying the journey.

Emma's Diary

my fab little WordPress.com site!

Inspiring Stories of My Healthy Lifestyle Change

Promoting Change one step at a time.

Jasmine's Vision: Seeing Pain Through New Eyes

A 30-year journey to the right diagnosis

Purely Nutritious

Let Food be Thy Medicine and Medicine be Thy Food

Kerrie Is Running

Hi, I'm Kerrie, I'm training to run, every mile counts!

Naturally Fit...& Well

Strengthen body......mind......spirit

PrimalCotton

Taking Life Back to the Basics

spokengear

All things about bicycles and bicycle commuting.

Unchained Iceland

• A FATBIKE ADVENTURE •

THE SKY RUNNER

Fitness. Food. Finance.

Ari rides her bike

Love at first pedal

foodbod

healthy tasty food that I love to make and eat and share

Did cavewomen wear heels?

A city girl struggling to live as her ancestors did. Adopting the Paleo lifestyle. Join the laughter, love and tears. Weight Loss. Cooking disasters. Crimes against fashion. Delicious recipes. Sarcastic remarks. Shoes. TTC. First world problems. Shift work. What more could you want from a blog?

Molly's Journey to the West

A Filmmaker, Writer, and Outdoor Enthusiast Experiencing the World

runnershealth

A site about science, running and health.

Lauren Lost Weight

A new town, a new school, a new me.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,144 other followers

%d bloggers like this: