Written by Allie Hurtgen, Stoke Manager for the NW Trail Sisters

Our mountain bike maintenance series continued on December 8th at the Trek Store in Westmoreland! Six women braved the rush hour traffic for a night of learning and socializing. 

We started the evening by learning what everyone’s favorite taco is, and a topic they were itching to learn about. From there, Sterling and Brian led an engaging discussion on how to identify the signs it’s time for bike maintenance.

Have you ever worn out your chain so bad it also wore your cassette? That won’t happen to any of us again! We learned how to check chain wear so it can be replaced before it wreaks havoc on the other components. We also learned how easy it is to over-lube the chain, which leads to additional wear and tear on the drive train. We even broke a chain to see how quick links work. 

We covered the importance of checking brake pads regularly, so that you don’t destroy the rotors. Participants even got to take a look at new pads versus worn pads to see the difference.

Next we covered suspension, a topic that’s quickly becoming popular. We covered topics like setting sag, determining if the fork/shock have enough air pressure, and how frequently suspension needs to be serviced. From there we moved on to tires; how to plug them, the benefits of running tubeless, and what air pressure to run (pro-tip: don’t do what I did when I first started riding and set the air pressure to the maximum listed on the tire…unless you like ping-ponging down the trail).

Finally, we covered a few trailside hacks to keep you rolling in the event something happens out on the trail. 

There were so many great questions asked by the group, which Sterling and Brian happily answered. 

·        Organic or metallic brake pads? 

·        Why do brakes squeal when wet? 

·        If I have metallic brake pads, can I switch to organic?  

·        How can I tell if a rotor is worn or contaminated?

·        How can I tell if a flat tire is due to a pinch flat or a puncture?

Naturally, the night concluded with a raffle! The lucky winners went home with some Stan’s sealant, Dumondtech chain lube, Trek gift cards, and some 100% gloves.

We want to extend a huge thank you to Sterling and Brian from Trek for hosting us and providing a welcoming space for everyone to learn about bike maintenance. And another thank you for providing some raffle prizes!

We’re stoked to keep bringing these events throughout the winter and into the spring. Keep your eyes open for future events!