Bike Maintenance Q

How often do you guys get your road bike maintained? I only ride about 50-70km a month.

After every ride, I do a quick clean and dry, but never anything else. Should I spot clean the chain? Oil it up? I’m a novice so I’m not too confident doing anything else myself.

Also, I’ve been quoted by a LBS that a typical maintenance will cost about NT2000 without any major issues. Is this the norm?

50-70km a month, riverside only and not riding in rain (in my book) is a once every 6 month check up if you don’t feel or hear any issues witht he bike.

If you’re doing 50-70km a month with some climbing and/or in rain, I would say a check up every 3-4 months and see what the LBS suggests.

Take note if they don’t know you well, they will try to milk a maintenance out of you because they will make a good amount of money for the service. You can share your issues/thoughts here if you need a second opinion.

This is a good habit and you should continue the traditional no matter what the conditions were on your ride! You’re doing a little more than the leisure rider, so I would suggest picking up some chain lube. It shouldn’t be more than 400NT and it will probably last you up to 2 years with the amount your riding.

Check out GCN Youtube videos on how to properly oil your chain. It’s quite simple. Some tips:

  • I personally don’t suggest WD40 (as Simon suggests)
  • Skip the de-greaser, don’t need it in such humid conditions like in TW
  • Make sure the chain is free of water before oiling, humid weather makes the components prone to rust!

2000NT is on the higher side of a maintenance fee. However, this will really depend on what the shop includes in the package. If they can be more specific, it’d help me answer your question on whether it’s expensive or not.

Here’s the usual break down (but not true for every bike shop)

Minor Maitenance (Estimate 1200-2000NT)

  • full clean and polish
  • they may remove wheels/chain/pedals/bottle cages/cassette to clean individually
  • maintenance check for any broken/worn parts

Major Maintenance (Estimate 2000NT+)

  • All of the above
  • Removal of group set for clean and check-up
  • New brake wires

If you need any suggestions for a LBS, please let me know! I personally know a few shops and know of shops that have good reputations.

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Ranlee, mod and cycling guru of Taipei. Thanks for your thorough response.

Follow up questions was going to be LBS recommendations. I work near 101 so any recommendations for that area will be helpful.

Haha thanks. I do what I can to help!

Nova Bike or Velo Dream are down the road from your office. I have heard good things from both!

Nova Bike Works (on Keelung Road towards NTU, before the on ramp to the expressway) has pretty spectacular service and the owner and his wife are both certified Shimano mechanics (don’t quote me on that, but I know at least one of them are). They know their stuff. Price for regular maintenance is unknown, I never asked. English capabilities: unknown.

Velo Dream (on the corner of He Ping and An He Rd, next to the Dominos) really doesn’t lose to Nova Bike. The shop owners at Nova used to own Velo Dream and sold it to the current owner. No huge downgrade in service, but just change in management. Price for regular maintenance: 1600NT. English capabilities (of the owner): very good.

The cheapest I’ve come across and I also know the guy who does the maintenance is the flag ship Merida shop in Neihu (on Rui Guang Rd). 1200NT for the regular maintenance. You do not need to own a Merida bike to have your bike serviced. Their English capabilities aren’t the greatest, but that’s where I come in.

perfect, thank you

I would suggest that you change your brake cables when you change your pads, and your brake cable outers as well every 4 sets of pads or so. at the same time you should probably whack on a new chain and cassette (say, every couple of years).
of course that all depends a lot on how hard and fast you ride, if you do that in the rain a lot, and how hard your chain and pads are to begin with.

otherwise, wipe clean when you get home (and wash it first if you have sweated a lot, dried sweat never really dries in Taiwan and just collects horridly corrosive moisture that rots your bike and components).

and add lube tot he chain every 4-5 rides. The best for Taiwan i have found is the dry wax with teflon from FinishLine, the one with the white bottle and gold cap.

Not the ‘wet’ version in the black bottle with green cap, which never dries and leaves shitty black marks all over the place (Your car upholstery will NOT like you if you use that).

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