Friday, April 4, 2008

before we begin

A few Divas gathered at Paramount Cycles for some pre-season training. The goal was to have everyone change out a tube in their tire. We talked about what tools to bring on trail rides, from your pump (and how to use it) to the right inner tube. We shared tips for making the tire repair a little easier, and we covered some details of preparing for a group ride.

So, if you'll be new to riding with the Divas this spring or summer and one of us greets you with a "welcome," and starts squeezing your tires, don't be alarmed. It's part of the pre-ride check over to make sure you have the correct amount of air in your tires. If you should get a flat, be confident that there are more flax-fixingly empowered Divas than ever before participating in rides. I feel better already!

Here are a couple things you should check on your bike:

Make sure you have enough air in your tires. How much? Look at the sidewall and find a range of numbers, such as 40 - 65 p.s.i. For pavement, pump 'em up to the max. For dirt, go low, but not lower than the recommended minimum. (A floor pump with gauge is a must!)

Inspect your repair kit. Did you patch that tube that's still in your seat bag from last year? Is it the right tube for your bike? Have you put all your tools back in the bag and replaced bandages in your first aid kit? Located your mini pump? Remember how to use it?

Did you put your bike away dirty last fall? If so, spritz it down with water (you can mix in a little degreaser if you need it) & wipe it clean. Clean that chain and put on some fresh lube - if you stored your bike after a wet ride, let the lube penetrate for awhile, then wipe it off and apply a bit more.

A well-maintained bicycle is a joy to ride, so be sure to take care of your two-wheeled companion. You've got a big season ahead!

posted by Rose - not the only flat-fixing diva out there!

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