The Mountain Bike Life

Author: Tony Cotto

I just love the Urban Dictionary definitions for “Lock it down”. There are 3 basic kinds of good bike locks: * Cable Locks * U-Locks * Chain Locks In this write-up I am going to go over some information and my thoughts on Cable Locks. Cable Locks Pros: Not bulky, inexpensive, not heavy, heavy duty 1/2″ or thicker cable can slow down thieves. Cons: Not the best lock for securing your expensive bike. The best bike locks are heavy duty…

Where do you lock up your bike? This is very important, and usually even more important than the bike lock itself. Any good lock-up is only as good as where and what you lock it up to. Never lock a bike to a small street sign pole that is easily un-boltable. Never lock it to a dummy pole (pole secured to a base with 1 bolt). Never lock it to a flimsy bike rack that is bolted together. And lastly…

It has taken years and a bunch of money for you to finally end up with your sweet honey of a mountain bike … and then, the worst feeling in the world. You realize that your bike has just been stolen! I would not wish that awful feeling on anyone. So what is the best way to keep your baby safe and secure? I have been an avid bike rider most of my life and I lived in Boston, MA…

As much as I enjoy Singletrack trail rides, I do not think that they are the end-all or pinnacle of my experience and ultimate enjoyment when it comes to mountain biking. I like to mix things up and to go to as many different places as I can to keep things interesting. Like they say “Variety is the spice of life”. Many years ago I remember when I had just gotten my first mountain bike. At the time I lived…

You can spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars to improve your bike. However, most often the biggest benefit in your mountain biking is actually to improve your own riding skills. How would you like to be able to get past those troublesome obstacles almost effortlessly? This is the #1 concern that most beginners wish to conquer. Here is a direct quote from a Beginner MTB rider: How do you practice this …and get so good at it that it never becomes…

Tire upgrades are by far one of the biggest upgrade improvements that anyone can do for very little money. Unfortunately, all of the different tire specs can be daunting and confusing. So, how do I pick tires for my mountain bike? So what does everything on the side of this tire mean? …and what should I choose? First of all, I would say that my type of riding would be defined best as “Trail” that is more towards the XC…

In my previous article I covered all of the big advantages of “Lower Tire Pressures”. In order to do this effectively, it is absolutely critical that you check your tire pressures very often. Believe it or not, I now check my tire pressures around once per week. I regularly set my pressures at 28 psi. I have seen my pressures sometimes drop to 15 – 20 psi in a couple of weeks. That is pinch flat low! In this article…

What is the most important part of equipment on your mountain bike? Suspension forks and shocks? Nope! Rigid bikes don’t need those. 30 speed derailleur drive trains? Nope! Single speeders only need one set of sprockets. Carbon fiber frame? Nope! Steel, aluminum, and titanium frames are still very popular and work perfectly well. Hydraulic disk brakes? Nope! Mountain bikes had cantilever brakes for many years and they were still very usable. It is true that almost all of those components…

Bbbbrraaaaapppp! Screeeeeeeaaaachchchch! Squeaaaaaal! Those brakes sometimes just drive you nuts. So what do I do to fix this problem? Good brake service is very important. Why are my brakes so noisy!! I first check that all the rotor bolts are properly torqued. Done. Check that all of the caliper mounting bolts are tight. Done. Re-center the pads so there is no brake rub. Done. Check to make sure the discs are not warped. Done. make sure that both of the…

“Knowledge is power!” It definitely can save you a ton of money and time too. The internet is such an outstanding resource for almost every kind of information on mountain bikes. On top of that, in the MTB community there just doesn’t seem to be a shortage of great folks that are willing to help you out. Using this kind of knowledge certainly is one of the most powerful tools available for frugal DIY’ers (Do-it-yourself ’ers). RockShox RT3 upgrade! Oh…

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