Cycloperativa mandate to teach basics of bicycle mechanics

©Barry Sandland/TIMB - Cycloperativa mechanics helping rider install brake pads to her bicycle

©Barry Sandland/TIMB – Cycloperativa mechanics are on hand to help guide- but the work is yours.

Part of the Cycloperativa mandate is to help riders learn more about their bikes. There are mechanics there to help, to guide, to undertake the harder work, but the riders are encouraged to do the work and learn more about how the bike works.

©Barry Sandland/TIMB - Cycloperativa mechanic helps with basic repairs

©Barry Sandland/TIMB – Cycloperativa mechanics are on hand to help guide- but the work is yours.

From installing brake pads to replacing cables, there are fundamental tasks that do not require any great mechanical understanding. But knowing these skills can help keep your bike on the road without spending money on bike shop  repairs.

The skills are being taught in many bike shops around the world. Your local bike shop, or collective, might be hosting beginners classes where you can learn the basics. There are often women-only classes, in case you want that environment, for whatever the reason. But learning how to replace a cable or brake pad is about 70% of the work a bike needs in a given year. And once you remember to oil the chain, and learn how to repair a flat tire, you have reached about 90% of beginner’s requirements. You can leave replacing spokes and truing wheels for the intermediate level skills.

Some are more entertaining, when in the audience. Watching three men work to take a tire off a wheel and getting frustrated at every step. To be fair, the wheel was done, whacked out of shape in a collision, likely with the curb. There are some repairs that are not for the beginner.

©Barry Sandland/TIMB - Cycloperativa helping with a wheel and tire repair

©Barry Sandland/TIMB – Cycloperativa mechanics are on hand to help guide- but the work is yours.

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