The personal musings of The Cycle Mechanic

Compressionless brake housing makes a difference

I recently serviced a TT bike that used a full length of brake cable housing from the lever to the rear brake. The housing was standard spiral wound brake housing which resulted in a very spongy feel and less than ideal braking. That problem was resolved by the use of compressionless brake housing.

Read More

Shimano launch synchronised shift on Di2

The latest firmware update for Di2 enables synchronised shift for Ultegra 6870 components. Synchronised shift lets the Di2 brain select the next available gear with one click of the lever. You're basically selecting a harder gear or an easier gear which may result in the Di2 brain making the selection by changing to the other front chain ring and a sprocket of the cassette. It's rather bizarre to watch it in action but it appears to work flawlessly.

Read More

Slick cables can lead to a bad gear change

​10 and 11 speed gear changing needs good quality cables to get a precise, smooth gear change. Many cable manufacturers offer PTFE coated cables for this purpose. PTFE is a coating similar to that on a non-stick pan so you can see why it is helpful in getting that precise gear change we're after. However, things can go wrong if you don't change this type of cable regularly.

Read More

Grow your own bike!

The Ghana Bamboo Bikes Initiative is a social enterprise that addresses climate change, poverty, rural-urban migration and youth unemployment by creating jobs for young people, especially women, through the building of high quality bamboo bicycles. What a great initiative!

Read More

Olympics TV coverage

What with fixing bikes and keeping up with the TdF, life hasn't left much time for anything else. Now we've got hours of live cycling due next month courtesy of the Rio Olympics. Personally I thought this years TdF was one of the most exciting for years. Can Rio 2016 beat that? Let's hope so. Check out the cycling TV schedule at the BBC website. Olympic cycling live BBC TV...

Read More

LOOK at me now

A LOOK 585 with a broken dérailleur and gear hanger is transformed in to a thing of beauty. With new gearing and components this bike will fly.

Read More

Visit FSB's website Visit City & Guilds website