5 WAYS TO SWEET GEARS
5 ways too ......
A good degrease of all the transmission components, chain, cassette, chain rings & derailleurs (especially jockey wheels) will help with slicker shifting as they can move freely.
Use a good quality chain lube for the conditions, dry in summer/wet in winter or a good all conditions or wax lube, not 3 in 1 or WD40. Don't over lube the chain a drop on each link is enough, and rings don't need lubing!
Don’t forget to lube the pivot points on the derailleurs – often overlooked these areas can soon become corroded & sticky especially in winter.
Correct cable tension and indexing is key to modern gear systems with loads of gears, a combination of limit screws, cable tensions and the much ignored b-tension screw adjustment are all involved in making sure that gear is there when you need it most; usually on a leg burning climb.
To some this is a dark art and best left to the professionals, anyone heard of a mech hanger alignment tool, we have!
Check cables aren’t fraying, is your chain worn, are the jockey wheels like ninja throwing stars?
Keep your eye on these smaller parts and you can extend the life of the more costly bits, have you seen the price of an 11 speed cassette?
Cables are likely to need replacing every year or so, fresh cables always increase shift performance – life can be increased with a bit of lube trickled into the outer cabling, remember if you’re replacing the inner you might as well do the outer.
Chains that are not too worn can be replaced to extend the life of cassettes and chain rings and can make a surprising difference to a misbehaving transmission. At some point it’s going to need a good refurb and will feel like a new bike, why not use the opportunity to upgrade to a sexier groupset!
Neil Limb - Head Bike Mechanic @ The Yorkshire Cycle Hub
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