Friday, January 23, 2015

1 of 2 today



Part 3

Bike parts are now cheaper than ever.  Of course, both bikes and bike parts are also made much cheaper in quality.  So you will be replacing parts more often.  I would strongly urge you to learn your own repairs, and to do that it is far easier to work on single speed bikes ( beach cruisers ) than geared ones.  Plus, with a pedal brake, single speeds are much safer stopping and your hands remain free ( in my neck of the woods, dogs love to try to bite me.  A can of Raid-get that brand, the others spray instead of stream after the first shot- held in a water bottle holder is great for getting them off you, much better than pepper spray.  Hard to do when braking a geared bike with disc or pad brakes ).  With a single speed, you need to learn to replace tubes and tires and chains and wheels, just as in all bikes.  But other than that, you just need to learn to crack the wheel hubs for greasing and to replace the crank arm bearings ( the part in between the pedals ).  I replace my wheels at three thousand miles-if I don’t the spokes start breaking- so I’ve never had to mess with the wheel innards other than adding grease.  I change my chain every 1500 miles and everything else, wheels and tires and tubes and crank arm bracket, every three thousand.  They could last longer, but with my long rides in the boonies preventive maintenance/replacement keeps me from breaking down and pushing the bike home ( if you use the Green Goop tubes, you should never get a flat unless a nail goes into a sidewall.  Or, buy tube-less tires.  A tire and tube is $30, a tubeless unit is $50.  So the extra cost isn’t too severe and gives you peace of mind ).


For a standard size 26 inch tire beach cruiser adult bike, most use the following standard replacement parts.  I get these exclusively at Amazon and am thankful for it ( always have replacements available as sometimes it takes over a week for shipping ).  Just search for the following.  Cruiser Front Wheel.  Cruiser Rear Wheel With Coaster Brake.  Cruiser Bicycle Tire.  Slime Smart Tube ( for the Green Goop tubes ).  Bicycle Chain ½ Inch x 1/8 Inch.  The replacements between the pedals are ( for the bearings ) Bottom Bracket 24TRI.  That is the metal cups that you hammer in to the tube on the frame that the crank arm runs through, then the bearings that sit in those.  Chain Ring, which is the big sprocket the chain sits on in between the pedals.  The crank arms, the piece shapes like a Z, has the pedals on each end.  This piece doesn’t need replaced as much as the Bracket and the Chain Ring, but have a back-up.  Look up: 6 ½ Inch One Piece Crank Arm 24 TPI.  I had a heck of a time finding these, as I didn’t know any of their names ( if you just look under Crank Arm, you get geared bike items ).  Luckily, Amazon does that “if you liked that item, you’ll like these also” feature so as soon as I figured out one piece crank arm ( in the comments section, a reviewer said this was for cruiser 26 inch wheel bikes, bless them ), the other two, Chain Ring and Bottom Bracket, popped up.  With a 17mm and a 15mm wrench ( and an adjustable for the crank arm nut ), tire shims, a screwdriver, a tire pump and chain link tool ( NEVER get the one from Wal-Mart as it breaks on the second or third chain ), plus a can of axle grease, you should have about all you need to fix your cruiser bike.


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  1. Thanks. Good advice for the persons switching to bike commuting. And good also for the kids bikes so many have in their garage, the it breaks and gets stored away pending repairs or replacement, and then of course it never happens and the kid gets a little fatter and petroleum dependent.


  2. "Plus, with a pedal brake, single speeds are much safer stopping"

    Perhaps it's due to the size, but my 29" single speed beach cruisers foot brakes do not stop very well at all if you are traveling at any kind of decent pace. I've read on some forums that many owners of these bikes install an auxiliary front hand brake to help with stopping. If you live in a hilly area, this is probably a good consideration. Applying steady pressure to your foot brakes on long grades will burn the grease out of your bearings and ruin your brakes. I haven't looked into it yet, but I am wondering if someone sells a special high heat tolerant grease for this application?

    " A can of Raid-get that brand, the others spray instead of stream after the first shot- held in a water bottle holder is great for getting them off you, much better than pepper spray."

    I've tried those ultrasonic dog repellers James. And while they work for the most part, I have found that they are less effective when dealing with the more aggressive Curs. Our neighbour's Queensland is becoming increasingly hostile, and the last time I tried this device, the dog was barely phased by it. I hear tell that ammonia and a spray bottle works quite well. I think that a better applicator would be one of those battery powered squirt guns.

    1. I'm sure those guns get a better range than the Raid. Sounds like a great idea.

  3. Never ran into a dog that could stand the ammonia squirt. No matter how bad it thought it was.