HOW TO…Exodus' Cycle repair guide
Welcome to the first of a new cycling feature ‘How To…’
In each edition of the One World, Two Wheels eNewsletter, we will be bringing you handy tips and instructions for DIY bike maintenance.
We’re kick-starting the series with a master class in the most basic of skills that every cycling enthusiast should have in their repertoire, puncture repairs…
Change an Inner Tube
Kit needed – bike pump, tyre levers (Pedros are the best!), disposable gloves, new tube and puncture patch kit.
Start with the wheel on the floor and the valve at the top nearest you.
Unscrew the plastic valve cap and the metal lock ring (Schrader or car type valves might not have a metal lockring).
Unscrew the tip of the valve (if it has one fitted).
Let out any remaining air. With a Schrader vale, push the centre of the valve inwards to release the air.
Put the curved end of one tyre lever carefully under one side of the tyre (be careful here, as it’s easy to put the tyre lever right under the whole tyre and then you’re trying to lift off both bits at the same time).
Fit a second tyre lever to one side of the first one
Push down on both tyre levers at the same time. This should lift one side of the tyre up and slightly over the top of the top of the wheel rim.
Hold one tyre stationery and push the second one away from you, around the circumference of the wheel (careful here as it’s easy to slip and graze your knuckles).
Continue to push the tyre lever around the whole wheel.
Push the valve upwards, so that it goes up into the tyre itself.
Reach up inside the tyre and gently pull the valve upwards through the wheel rim.
Remove the punctured inner tube from the tyre.
Carefully feel all around the inside of the tyre to check for thorns/pieces of metal or anything else that might have caused the puncture – be careful not to cut your hand whilst doing this! If you find anything sticking through the tyre, remove it by pulling from the outside of the tyre with a pair of tweezers or a set of needle nosed pliers. It is important that you check very carefully for anything sticking through the tyre, otherwise when you put the new inner tube in, it will get punctured once you inflate it.
Gently inflate the new tube until it is like a sausage.
Rotate the wheel until the valve hole is at the top. Pull back one side of the tyre to reveal the hole and push the valve of the tube through.
Photos 17 & 18 – Lie the wheel flat on the floor and slowly push the slightly inflated inner tube into the tyre, feeding it around the whole circumference. Be careful not to trap the inner tube or to twist it as you fit it (as this might lead to it popping as you re-inflate it).
Put the wheel back vertically and rotate it until the valve is at the bottom of the wheel. With both hands gently roll the tyre back over the edge of the rim until it pops back into place.
Move your hands in the opposite direction around the circumference of the tyre gradually rolling the tyre back into place. As you move your hands around the wheel, try and stretch the tyre towards the bottom of the wheel at the same time as rolling it onto the rim.
As you reach the bottom of the wheel (near the valve) you might find it easier to pick the wheel up and hold it against your stomach. The very last section nearest the valve will be quite a tight fit, but if you have pulled all slack on the tyre to the bottom, you should be able to roll it onto the rim using the palm of your hand (and so not need to use tyre levers). If the tyre is too tight, place the wheel vertically on the floor with the valve at the lowest point. Starting at the top of the top of the tyre stretch the tyre with both hands pushing them away form each other around the circumference of the tyre, so that you’re pushing the “slack” towards the bottom.
If you’ve stretched the tyre properly, it will pop on without too much swearing! Check that the tyre has popped on properly all the way around the rim.
Re-fit the metal lock ring.
Re-inflate to the correct pressure.
Refit the dust cap, refit the wheel and go cycling!
Repair an Inner Tube Puncture:
- Inflate the damaged tube to a high pressure and try and locate the hole – a good tip is to turn your face so that your cheek is near the tube – then rotate the tube in a circular motion, listening and feeling as your work your way around the tyre – you should be able to spot the hole by a mix of feeling the air on your cheek and hearing the noise.
- Mark the hole using a small piece of chalk if you have some.
- Deflate the tube.
- Roughen the area around the hole with some coarse sandpaper and apply some puncture patch glue in a circle around the hole – make sure you apply the glue evenly and to cover an area wider than the diameter of your patches.
- Leave the glue to dry. This can take anything from 10 minutes to an hour.
- Once the glue is completely dry, peel the metal backing off the patch and apply centrally over the hole.
- Smooth down the edges. Gently peel off the plastic upper covering of the patch, making sure you don’t peel the patch off in the process. Apply constant pressure all around the patch to make sure its firmly stuck down. Don’t be tempted to peel the edges back to check it’s glued though!
- Once you’re happy the patch has stuck, apply a light dusting of chalk or talcum powder over the area (to make sure the spare glue doesn’t then stick to the inside of the tyre).
If you’re not going to use the repaired tube straight away, roll it up tightly, squeezing all the air out as you do so. Replace the dust cap and secure with a rubber band, ready to go in your jersey pocket on your next ride.