Basic Bike Check – ABC
Perhaps, one of the most common mistakes people make before setting off on a bike ride is not giving the bike a once over. By carrying out this basic bike check, you will lessen the chances of being stranded on the road side. As a Bikeability trainer, this is one of the first things we try and get young riders into the habit of doing. There’s the M check which is more thorough, and a the ABC or basic bike check which in reality takes approximately 1 minute to do.
Basic Bike Check – easy as ABC
- A stands for AIR – Pretty simple, no air = no ride! As a rule of thumb, check your front and rear tyre before setting off. Your tyre should feel like a firm apple and not a “squishy” banana!
- B stands for BRAKES – Apply both brakes on and move the bike forward and backwards. If the brakes don’t offer any resistance and the tyres keep moving; then perhaps it’s not a wise idea to ride, Sometimes it is a pretty simple issue to fix.
- C stands for CHAIN – A quick visual inspection of the chain is all that is required. Check that it is a nice black or silver colour. If your chain is orange, then it needs a quick clean and adequate lube is all that is needed. It is a pointless exercise adding lube to a rusty chain without cleaning it.
This is a very simple and quick bike check, which forms part of the more comprehensive “M check”. The “M check” is a more thorough check which goes through the key components of the bike.
It is a good idea to get into the habit of doing a basic bike check before setting off on your ride. Even if the bike has been standing just a few hours; you never know what you may have picked up on your last ride or if anyone may have tampered with your bike!