“Ask MBA” peeve of the month:
Forest fires that destroy the trails we love.
Have a question for the MBA crew?
You can send your brain busters to
the temptation to lube the cassette, pulleys
or chainrings. Again, that will do more
harm than good. Once you’ve dripped a bit
on the whole chain, take a shop rag and
wipe off the excess. Any lubricant that’s
left on the outer chain link plates can cause
problems. The lubricant is only useful if it’s
inside the chain on the rollers.
If you are a bike nut, which most of us
at MBA are, you should wash your bike
meticulously before lubing your chain. You
can use a degreaser if you like, although
we’ve had good luck with plain-old Dawn
dish soap and a soapy brush. Once the
chain is clean and dry, take your drip lube
and put a single drop of your preferred lube
on each of the chain rollers and pins. This
will allow it to penetrate without leaving any
excess to wipe off.
Finally, don’t think you necessarily need
lube every time you ride. Instead, listen
to your drivetrain. When it starts to sound
dry, then it’s time for a lube job.
THERE ARE NO DUMB
Q: This might sound like a dumb question, but I recently bought a mountain
bike for my wife, and I can’t get it set up
right. When I bought my bike, the shop
set up my shocks for me; but, we bought
this bike online, and the shock is totally
too soft. I tried to pump the shock up, but
I can only get to like 100 psi before my
pump blows off, and that’s not enough. I
don’t want to go to a bike shop, because
my wife will think I don’t know what I’m
doing. What should I do?
—Edward, whose pump is
A: You need a high-pressure shock pump
that can handle more pressure than the
floor pump you’re using. You will also want
to carefully check the pressure guidelines,
which can be found printed on the fork or
shock itself or on the company’s website.
The fact that you tried to take a floor pump
to a shock makes us think it might be ben-
eficial to head to a local shop for a lesson
on setup too. Your ego might be dinged, but
your wife will thank you in the long run. ❑