Paula R. Buckland

Author Archives: Paula R. Buckland


4 Cool Ways to Recycle Used Bicycle Tubes

It’s a grim reality that not all damaged bike tube can be patched back to life. Sometimes, tires get too worn or damaged to even be of any good use at all. Now that does not mean that old bike tubes will go to the junkyard at this point. Given a little bit of ingenuity, however, you can give old tires a new life.

Bike tubes have a lot of use, given the versatility of its material, being very easy to cut and fashioned into different shapes for a variety of purposes. If you want to try it out yourself, here are a few neat ideas that you can certainly use.

Build a Ride Case to Protect Your Stuff

An old tube can be pretty much anything. So long as there are ample amounts of material left in it, you can fashion it into just about any object. One simple and really useful item that you can create with old bike tubes is a purse that you can put your valuables in and secure them., Smaller tubes can be very useful for creating slimmer storage for tools.

Here’s how you can get one done.

  1. Cut the tube open and lay it flat on the table, after which you measure and cut out what you need for the purse. It helps to use references, like the object that you intend to store in it.
  2. Fold the resulting sheet in a way that one of the sides is a little longer so as to create the flap. Make sure the tube’s inner surface faces out, and then sew the sides.
  3. Once done, turn the whole thing inside out.
  4. Add Velcro strips or snaps for closure.
  5. You can then add your own personal touches, but this is pretty much it.

A Fashionable Rubber Belt

Who says recycling can’t be fashionable? Indeed it is, and in the case of used bike tires, you can make yourself a belt that will easily go with your riding gear. For this one, however, you will need a little bit more creativity and aesthetic sense. Naturally, this is most suitable for more serious or experienced craftspeople, especially those with a good sense of fashion and design.

Want to go for it, regardless? Here’s a quick tutorial for a four-piece braid belt:

  1. Slice the tube into four uniform strands.
  2. Attach the strands around the middle of a pre-made or purchased buckle.
  3. Braid the strands starting from the ends attached to the buckle.
  4. Bind the strands at the end with a few stitches.

Tube Holder

Need to keep that spare tube neatly tucked inside your pocket or the seat post for easy repairs? Well, old tubes can be used in place of more fragile rubber bands. Simply cut a long, narrow strip off of a used tube and use it to hold your untarnished spare tube in place. The tube’s material will not snap as easily as any elastic band, thus saving you the risk of accidents from suddenly unravelling spare tubes and the potential injuries and embarrassment that may ensue.

Home-made “Super Floss”

Stretching is very important, and we all know that. However, there are just some areas in our legs that are very hard to reach and get mobilised. A floss can easily provide a fix for that problem, but this can be quite expensive. A great alternative to this is one made from used bike tubes. While it can be a little shorter than one that you can buy from the market, it is still good enough and works all the same. All credits to this one goes to Mobility WOD’s Kelly Starrett, and you can check out his YouTube videos if you are looking to learn how to use this tool.

Making one is as easy as following these two steps:

  1. Cut the stem off.
  2. Split the inner tube into two.

There are so much more things that you can do with all those used bike tubes lying in your garage. Bringing life to all that junk would require some imagination, ingenuity, and a lot of exploration and experimentation. Go ahead, do yourself and nature a favour, and give it a try.


How to Fix A Sticky Freewheel

Let us find the solution of a simple and minor problem of your costly bike. This article is concerned with the procedure of cleaning and lubing a sticky freewheel that is gummed up with the old grease and cannot move freely. Of course, you are going to require a greater force for riding such a bike. That may seem to be a minor issue but it really needs to be fixed because it would only get worse day by day.

Do a simple test. Rotate the tyre and note its motion. If the tyre is gummed up, it would slow down quicker than normal. Remove the tyre and hold it from the axle and rotate. It would stop soon. Rotate the free wheel and see how fast it stops. All these simple tests confirm one thing that the tyre is gummed up with grease and needs to be treated. Written below are some simple steps to get rid of such a problem.

Unscrew the freewheel in order to clean the grease. Different freewheels require different types of tools to unscrew them from the wheel. Choose the appropriate tools for your bike to unscrew freewheel.

Once you loosen the screw, spin the freewheel off the tyre. Take the freewheel out. What next you have to do is to take the WD-40 and spray it on the ball bearings of freewheel. Rotate the freewheel continuously with the help of your hands. This rotation will allow the WD-40 to enter deep into the bearings. Old grease and dirt is cleaned off and rotation becomes fast, smooth and resistance free. Keep on spraying WD-40 until the rotation becomes fast enough. Then take a paper towel and wipe out the excess WD-40 because it is a good solvent and is not good for the ball bearings. It is not essentially a good lubricant for the bearings for a longer time. Tap the freewheel for some time on the paper towel so that WD-40 comes out of the cracks. If possible, use compressed air to blow down the cracks so that all of the WD-40 comes out and leaves the surfaces neat and clean. We want to get all of it out of there.

The next step is to lubricate the freewheel. For this purpose, you may use the phil tenacious oil and pour down into the ball bearings and rotate it so that the oil reaches in the deeper parts and all the articulating surfaces are lubricated well. Keep on applying the oil unless it comes out from the other side. Do rotate the freewheel with hand to get the uniform distribution of the lubricant. When you clearly see the oil coming out from the other side, you can be assured of the thorough distribution of oil inside. This method will give your bike a maximum speed and a uniform and smooth ride. After this, using a paper towel, you can wipe out all of the excess oil to get surface clean. Again tap down the freewheel to extract out the oil from the cracks. Now as you know, you have to fix the freewheel on the wheel. Use your tool. Fix the skewer so that it doesn’t slip off. Tighten the freewheel with the tools and remove the tool.

Now it’s the time to mount the wheel on your bike. Take your bike and fix the wheel carefully. Take care of the exact position where the wheel is supposed to be fixed. Tighten the nuts with a force so that they don’t get loose while riding. It may be dangerous for you. Give your wheel a spin. You will surely notice that it spins much smoother now. This is how to fix a sticky freewheel. Now mount on your beloved bike and go for a lovely ride with your friends.

Every problem comes with a solution. All you need is to have the necessary ken to deal with such problems. I hope this article helps you to fix this issue with your bikes.

How to Fix Hybrid/Mountain Bike V Brakes Rubbing On One Side

Most of the hybrid bikes possess V brakes for reliable and safe performance. These brakes have a greater efficiency and are more proficient. Given below is the comprehensive detail of how to fix such v brakes if they are rubbing on one side of the tyre.

Despite their greater efficiency, V brakes sometimes are rubbing on one side of the tyre that produces friction and hinders the free motion of your bike. In such a case, one side brake is moving while the other side doesn’t show motion at all and is constantly in contact with the surface of the tyre of your bike.

You need not worry about such a problem if you are facing it. Don’t think of the wastage of your precious money on such an expensive and luxurious bike. You need to relax and follow some of the simple steps to get the issue resolved. Within no time you will be able to enjoy your blissful ride once again over the lush roads with a new passion and enthusiasm.

The first and foremost thing that you have to do in order to fix this problem is to release the skewer to make sure that the tyre is centred. Release the skewer and fix the position of the tyre so that it comes in its central position where it is supposed to be. Tighten the skewer back up again. Rotate the tyre and check its rotational movement. If the problem is solved then you are done. Otherwise, you need to make some further changes in order to get the problem solved. This isn’t a big issue.

Now you have to make some adjustments to the brakes. Reach out to the side of the brake that is not showing movement. You need to pull it out. Simply take a screwdriver and reach to the screw at the bottom of this side of the brake. Tighten it by rotating it in the clockwise direction about half a turn. Now move to the other side of the brake that is not fixed. Look at its screw and loosen it. All you need to do is to rotate it in an anti-clockwise direction to about half a turn. Now go ahead and try the brakes by checking it. If the problem is persistent, do tighten the screw of the fixed side by rotating another half a turn in clockwise direction, and do loosen the other screw by moving another half turn.

Give the brakes another try to check its accuracy. If you feel that more adjustments are to be done, turn the screws accordingly by trying the brakes each time you rotate the respective screws. A time comes when the fixed end is not frozen anymore. Lift the tyre up, rotate it with your hand and apply brakes. Here you go. Just by a simple screwdriver, you can set your brakes anytime and anywhere you want, provided that you know the procedure to do it. Just be sure to turn the screws to a reasonable degree. Do turn both of the screws equally in a fixed proportion.

Your bike no longer disturbs your ride. This is the time to mount your bike and set off for an enjoyable ride with your friends or siblings. Go to the market to buy stuff or go to the parks to enjoy weather. Your brakes are no longer going to annoy you. Just keep a screw driver with you and feel free to flee wherever you want. Knowledge about setting your brakes is very necessary that has been provided in a very comprehensible manner in the former description.


Tips And Tricks For Mountain Biking.


Mountain biking is a great source of entertainment for all sort of riders. It is not so easy to ride in the slope of a mountain if you do not know the basic and fundamental rules of this game. Well, today I am going to give you some important tips and tricks about mountain biking. If you can practice master these techniques, surely mountain bike ride will be more safes and sound and comfortable to you.

Increase Your Skills
Skills are the most important fact in a mountain bike ride. The basic skills of cycling are required in this sector, but in this case, the skills are a little bit upgraded. You need to know the proper implementation of gears, the exact moment to apply brakes, sitting position to obtain more balance, how to ride in downhill and uphill and manoeuvring process on different surfaces like sand, mud and creeks.  Start with these techniques; eventually, you can grab the other skills too.

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How to Ride Uphill In a Mountain Bike?

Mountain Biking is a great source pleasure and time pass for the bike enthusiasts. Well, the riders have to face both uphill and downhill in such a trip. Downhill ride is very entertaining where the uphill or climbing is a dreadful work. It is the step where you have to prove your highest possible strength and stamina as you are working against both the friction and gravity. If you know the proper tips and strategy, you can reduce the stress on your body while climbing or riding an uphill. Let’s have a look how to ride an uphill efficiently

How To Ride Uphill In A Mountain Bike?

3 Fundamental Equipment
If you want to ride and uphill without putting much pressure on your body, you should be equipped with the following three items:

  •  Adequate Physical Strength
  • Proper Gear Selection Skill
  •  Hill Climbing Strategy

If you are a bike enthusiast, it is expected that you have enough physical stamina to face such situation. If you lag behind, a few days of practice and workout may improve your situation. But the second and third skills will take some time and long practice to master. Let’s have a look at other important hardware items that is required for an efficient mountain bike ride.

Select The Proper Bike

Basically, there are two types of bikes: Road bikes and mountain bikes. There are a number of differences between these two kinds and you have to pick the appropriate mountain bike for you for such operation. If you make the wrong decision, it is near about impossible to ride the uphill.

The fundamental difference between road bikes and mountain bikes lays on their frame and tires. Mountain bikes have heavier frame and suspension to roll over any kind of surface where the light weight road bikes can roll on the smooth surface only. The wider tires of a mountain bike allow you sufficient traction to sustain the control, but the thin road bike tires will not provide you with that.

Gear Selection

Gear selection is the most important part of this ride because if you cannot select the appropriate gear, you cannot carry out the stress for a long time and will quit. You should imply the lower gears as soon as the road becomes inclined.

Hill Climbing Strategy
Convex Hills
Convex hills are steepest at the bottom and become shorter as soon as the rider approaches towards it. The main two components of riding such hills are speed and power. To climb a convex hill, you have to accelerate the speed by shifting down. Timing is important. If you shift to lower gears too early, you may get exhausted with frequent pedalling. If you are late, you may feel too much stress before even reaching the top.

Concave hills
Concave hills are steepest at the top and become taller as soon as the ride approaches towards the hill. As it is a different uphill, you need a different strategy than convex hills.
Two key strategies are required to climb a concave hill. The first one is keeping the speed steady. The second one is stand up on the pedal. You should approach the hill at a steady speed and continue the speed by shifting to lower gears. Standing on the pedals will allow you to imply some extra force in the pedal without putting much pressure as the whole body is already on it.

Pedal by your tow not by your heels. Thus, you can apply your both thy and calf muscles and distribute the stress. Be aware of the edges and stay at a safe distance.

How To Chose Your Bike Frame?

The frame is the most important part of a bike. Choosing a right frame is very important as all other components will rely on it the bike’s performance is severely dependable on it. Bike manufacturers provide the range of frames according to your height, but in some case, these are not applicable. Following tips will help you to pick the perfect bike frame for you.

Determine Your Requirement

First of all, determine what kind of bike you are looking for. If you want a bike for regular commuting in the city, the road bike will be your match. If you want to go for a long ride in off trails, a mountain bike will be best for you. If you want to do both, go for a hybrid bike.

Size of Frame

Every frame has a rider range. To determine the approximate frame size for you, you have to do some measurement. Take the length of your inner legs in inches. If you are looking for a mountain bike, deduct 12 inches. In the case of road bikes, deduct 9 inches. So, if you have a 34 inch long inner legs, the mountain bike frame size for you will be 22 inches and road bike frame size for you will be 25 inches. Again, when you stand on bikes top tube, both of your feet will touch the in full-fat position and there is sufficient space for you between the handlebar and seat. Again, your seat position will be such that you have a minimum clearance between the top tube and seat. For a mountain bike, this clearance should be 3 to 5 inches and for the road bike, it should be 2 to 4 inches. Mountain bikes require the extra clearance as they have to experience much rough surface. The rest is up to you. If you want to ride in a more upright position, buy a taller frame. In this case, you will lose the aerodynamic facility.

Handle Bar and Seat

Handlebar and seat of a bike also play a vital role for a rider. The position of the handlebar and seat changes depending upon your bike’s category. The road bike riders usually prefer a down turned handle where they can get low in the saddle. This position allows them a comfortable riding position. The flat handlebar is favoured by the mountain bike riders as they have to manoeuvre in some uneven surface and terrain. Their seats are comfortable to absorb shocks from the rough trails. These seats come with a gel padding, cushioning and in such a shape that allow maximum comfort to the rider while underway.

Suspension Facility

Mountain, hybrid and comfort bikes allocate suspension in their design. These suspension forks are installed to reduce the vibration and shock when you ride over the rocks and uneven off-road trails. Comfort bikes are the best option for the beginners as their suspension is much better for this kind of rider. The suspension varies from model to model and in different brands. Some bike has two wheel suspensions, but most of the bike comes with front suspension only.

Your Cycling Requirement

What kind of frame will you buy? Before asking that question, ask yourself, why you are buying the frame? Do you have any special requirement? If you get the answer, it will be easier for you to pick up the bike frame material. The most robust and durable frame material is titanium. Professional riders use this material for the strongest frame and sometimes mix it with aluminium or carbon fibre to avail a lightweight but strong frame. For a regular rider, steel is used in most of the frame. You can pick up from carbon steel and molybdenum steel. Although molybdenum steel is a bit lighter, they both are very strong.
These are the major facts you should consider while buying a bike frame. You do not have to maintain these points every time. If you get a bike frame which you can maneuver easily and you are comfortable with it, just go for that one.