repair

The Self-Reliant Mechanic

Tenana, Alaska. A beautiful place in the middle of nowhere to get stranded. It’s Day 8 of a two week tour. You’re in the middle of nowhere, which means there are over 200 miles separating you in every direction from the nearest bike shop. All of a sudden you hear a snap and you lunge forward. Luckily, you didn’t flip your bike, but what just happened? You look down and see your c...

The Case Against Bicycle Repair Nihilism

You need to take care of your bicycle!  I know that not caring about anything is cool, but you’re not an angsty high schooler anymore, and your apathy is more lazy than hip.  Also, you’ve seen The Breakfast Club enough times to know that even Judd Nelson cares in the end.  So pretend your bicycle is Molly Ringwald, and give a damn.  Even if it’s in secret and with an angry look o...

Take Advantage of Bicycle Co-ops

Off the Chain Bicycle Collective in Anchorage. Photo Courtesy of Troy Mustache Bicycle co-ops (and collectives) are an invaluable resource while on tour. As not everyone knows what a co-op is, or what they do, I’d like to first lead you on a guided meditation to bring you into their magical world. Close your eyes and have the person next to you read this aloud: You are riding your bicycle th...

Boring Bikes for Better Tours

Touring is not like other cycling, so different equipment rules apply.  Instead of always leaning towards lightweight, fancy components, it can be advantageous to stick to slightly overbuilt and commonplace parts.  Carbon frames with ultralight components are great for a road bike, but how would they handle 2,000 fully loaded miles?  Hydraulic brakes are a high-end, frictionless braking alternativ...