Canyon Sports’ summer services list includes complete bike tunes. We can tune any kind of bike regardless of size and style. Bike tuning, whether you do it yourself or bring it to us, guarantees that your bike is in tip-top shape for a full season of quality riding.
So, what do bike tunes look like? We don’t want to give away the store here, so we won’t let you in on any of our trade secrets. But we will explain a basic step-by-step process that tends to be pretty typical throughout the industry. Use it as a checklist if you want to do a quick tune up at home.
Step #1: Do a Deep Cleaning
The whole point of the bike tune is to address maintenance issues and adjustments so that your bike offers optimal performance. It doesn’t matter whether you are a mountain biker, or you prefer riding on city streets. A well-maintained bike that performs as it should makes riding enjoyable.
We say all that to say this: you cannot do a proper tune on a dirty bike. So the first step is to do a deep cleaning. A gentle cleaning solution (dish soap and water works pretty well) combined with a soft-bristle brush or sponge should easily remove all the dirt and grease.
Step #2: Do a Visual Inspection
The second step in a thorough bike tune is the visual inspection. This is more or less a safety inspection. You want to start with the frame and forks, looking for any hairline cracks or tube damage. Next, check the handlebars, seat post, and seat post collar for cracks or damage.
From there you will move to the wheels, tires, brakes, and drive chain. You are looking for any signs of damage. By the way, aren’t you glad you cleaned your bike? Running a visual inspection on a dirty bike is harder.
Step #3: Make Adjustments to Wheels and Tires
A clean and thoroughly inspected bike is ready for adjustments. Start with the wheels and tires. Tighten up any loose spokes to the proper attention. If the tires are worn, consider replacing them. Tubeless tires should be resealed if at least six months have passed since the last sealing.
Step #4: Make Adjustments to the Brakes
Once you have finished adjusting the wheels and reinstalled them, it’s time to check and adjust the brakes. Your wheels should spin true and free as you make your break adjustments.
Fluid-based brakes should be bled and refilled. Standard cable brakes should respond smoothly as you depress the brake handles. If the brake pads are worn, replace them. Otherwise, adjust the brakes so that pads are centered as they make contact with the braking surface. The pads on both sides of the wheel should make contact at the same time.
Step #5: Finish with the Derailers and Chain
The last step of a bike tune is adjusting the derailers and lubricating the chain. Keep your lubrication to a minimum. Apply just enough to do the job well. Otherwise, excess lubricant will only attract more dirt.
A lubricated chain makes adjusting the derailers easier. Check the front derailer first, adjusting barrel tension as needed. Follow up with the rear derailer. In both cases, make smaller adjustments instead of larger ones. It doesn’t take much to completely change a derailer’s responsiveness.
DIY bike tunes are pretty common. But if you don’t trust yourself or you would just rather have someone else do it for you, bring your bike down to Canyon Sports. Bike tunes are on the menu all summer.