One of the most important factors for a great bike tour is having your bike in excellent condition. Here are some tips that will help you keep your bike in perfect shape.
1 – Get your bike fully revised
Although some basic tasks may be performed by the rider, it doesn’t mean you should skip a visit to your bike shop.
Always have your bike fully checked and worn parts replaced by a professional before a bike tour.
There’s nothing more frustrating than not being able to complete your tour due to a mechanical problem on the bicycle, after all the packing, travelling and training hassle.
2 – Clean your bike
Keeping your bike clean is a must so all its components can work properly. Dirt often diminishes the fluidity of the parts and makes them wear out faster.
3 – Check the tire pressure
Checking your tires before a tour prevents flats and improves the bike’s performance.
Depending on rider’s weight, tire size, road conditions, riding style and many other variables, tire pressure is a really personal and sensitive subject. Every rider must know the ideal pressure for the given conditions and keep track of it, adjusting if needed.
4 – Check your gears and shifting
The chainrings, chain and sprockets combo, combined with the front and rear derailleur, are the most important parts of your bike and the ones more prone to wear.
Add cables and shifters to the equation and you’ve got it all.
Make sure everything is properly secured and lubricated and that there are no “funny” noises or unusual play in any of those components: this will ensure fast, smooth and reliable shifting. There are specialized tools to check the chain wear.
5 – Inspect all the contact points
You will stay in contact with your bike through tree main points: Saddle, Handlebars and Pedals.
Over time, saddles wear out, and it’s important to ensure they keep comfortable and safe as this is probably the most critical point that often drives people to skip one or more days of pedalling.
Handlebars should be checked frequently, specially aluminium ones, as they often get really hard corrosion from the sweat, and are usually covered by the handlebar tape.
Last but not least, pedals are another important and hard to work around part. Ensure they have no play and spin freely without any noise. If you use the clipless type (which we strongly recommend) also check your shoe cleats. If you must use a platform type pedal, please choose a light aluminium one with some grip.
Now that you know how to keep your bike in top-notch condition, you can start to schedule your luxury vacation 🙂 Take a look at our tours in Portugal.