New Bicycle Repair Book and Challenge

In my brief attempts to fix my own bikes I always relied on Bicycle Magazine’s Complete Guide to Bicycle Maintenance. You know, back when we used to use things called books…to find information.

I had the 4th edition, written by Jim Langley back in 1999. It was a very informative guide and always helped me to avoid having to take a whole bag of parts in a zip lock bag to my local bike shop. Complicated repairs, should be done by qualified technicians, but for the routine maintenance and general wear this book was invaluable. It also gave me a thorough understanding of how bicycles work, what parts are what and helped me identify which tools I should have on hand. This really is the bible for bike repair.

The fine people at Rodale Publishing (who also produce Bicycling Magazine) were kind enough to send me the latest version (the sixth addition) written by Todd Downs.

This updated and revised edition is packed with 17 chapters of valuable information and includes maintenance and repair tips for both mountain and road bikes.

There are over 450 photos detailing step by step instructions to basically build a bike from scratch.

It is so detailed it even includes individual manufactures of parts, so when they are talking about a crank extraction they reference Shimano, SRAM and Campy.

You may not be up to truing your own wheels, but this book will come in handy for basic wear on the bicycle, with lots of detailed charts and info on proper tire inflation, brake adjustments and gearing.

More about the book and to buy a copy go to the Rodale Store here.

To celebrate the new book, this Wednesday, 12/8/10 Bicycling Magazine and Park Tools are hosting:

The Bike Repair Challenge.

Here is more about that:

Are you a hotshot amateur bike mechanic? Come prove it.

To celebrate the newly released Bicycling Guide to Complete Bicycle Maintenance & Repair, Bicycling magazine and Park Tool Co. are teaming up to find the cyclist with the fastest bike repair skills in the New York City area.

On December 8, 2010 at 6:30pm at Sid’s Bikes (151 W. 19th Street, NY, NY) 12 lucky cyclists from New York City will compete to see who is the quickest at classic bike repairs, with the Bike Snob and Bicycling editors on-hand to give play-by-play on all the action. The prize for the top wrench? A trio of excellent prizes from Park Tool –including a professional tool kit, repair stand and floor pump, altogether worth more than $800 — along with a $500 gift certificate to Sid’s Bikes, and a premium membership to local advocacy group, Transportation Alternatives. The second and third place finishers will also take home great prizes. In addition, Bicycling and Park Tool will be raffling off plenty of swag to audience members, so come check it out even if you’re not competing.

If you’re up to the challenge, submit an application and a short essay found on the this website. In your essay, tell us in 250 words or less “Why should you be picked to compete in the Bicycling Magazine Bike Repair Challenge?” Bicycling will then choose 12 contestants to compete in the Bike Repair Challenge. Contestants will be notified by email.

Event Details:
– Wednesday, Dec. 8, 2010 @ 6:30pm
– Sid’s Bikes in NYC, @ the Chelsea location (151 West 19th Street, NY, NY)
– For a chance to compete, fill out an application and submit an essay below
– Space is limited — please arrive early to attend

I know, it’s kind of last minute to be one of the contestants, but it sounds like it’s going to be pretty interesting to watch the action.

1 comment to New Bicycle Repair Book and Challenge

  • Thanks for the nice words about my bicycle maintenance book BikeBlogNYC. Appreciate it and enjoyed learning of the Bike Repair Challenge – wish I could have been there to cheer everyone on. Just wanted to point out that I also have a lot of helpful bike repair how tos, tips and tricks on my bicycle website and blog.

    Happy bike repairing!
    Jim Langley