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Calvin's Corner

Posts by calvin@parktool.com

Parlez vous Bike-Talk? (Bicycle Mechanic Languages)

The most recent addition of this language database is Serbian, as of March 26, 2008. Thank you all who have helped expand this tool and provide feedback. I hope you find it useful. Download: Bicycle_Mechanic_Languages_5.xls In my line of work it has been necessary to travel to variou...

Race Mechanic Clinic for 2008

Each year USA Cycling hosts the Bill Woodul Mechanics Clinic.  Named for a former USA Cycling Equipment Manager and Chief Mechanic, Bill Woodul, the clinic offers training unique in the mechanic's world.  There are four days of classes and education in the ways of the racing world, pres...

A Visit With Andy Hampsten

Andy Hampsten is a former professional racer. Winner of the Giro d'Italia, vetreran of the Tour de France, team rider for the Motorola Cycling Team, 7-11, La Vie Claire, and Levi's, Andy has seen many a mile on and off the bike. Andy was kind enough to take the time to chat about about bik...

Winter Time Preparation

Each type of competitive or sport riding has certain bike features that are "sports specific." Winter riding, meaning a lot of snow, deep back woods, alone, and cold, real cold, requires it's own special type of thinking and equipment. Park Tool's engineer, Pierre Ostor, is a wint...

Toys for Tots Bike Build

It is a cold December morning at 07:00 hours. The temperature is -1 degree F. It is a bright, sunny day. Time to drive down to QBP for their yearly Toys-for-Tots bike build. All in all, it's a great day to fix a bike! On the road for the children. Quality Bicycle Products and local retailer...

The Triple Crown of Racing

This article will discuss the triple clamp fork. The triple clamp provides a very rigid and strong system to hold fork legs.   It can found on downhill race bikes, freeride bikes, and some "enduro" bikes (Figure 1). Figure 1. The extremes of downhill racing require strength and...

A look back

Fall is always to good time for retrospection. Looking back, way back in my case, I realize perhaps that I have not changed much. For example, in Figure 1, we see the definition of cool in what was perhaps 1974. Figure 1. Coolness defined by the gestalt of blue jean shorts, polyester sho...

2007 Mountain Bike World Championships

This article will discuss the technical services provided to the US athletes at the 2007 UCI World Mountain Bike Championships, in Fort William, Scotland. I acted as Lead Mechanic for the USA Cycling mechanics. The most recent evenet are posted at the top, with background at the bottom. See...

Fishing for the boss

This article will discuss a potential repair of failed water bottle fittings. Water bottle fittings are intended to be permanent part of the bike frame. Consult the bike manufacturer before attempting any repair. The industry standard thread for bottle cage is the M5 (5mm x 0.8). There are th...

If the Shoe Fits

This article will discuss the various foot retention options for the bicycle. The pedals of the bicycle accept the foot and shoe. The cyclist's shoe is really the beginning of the bicycle drive train, especially if the intention is to achieve high performance. A sloppy fitting shoe will be a...

BIke Swap!

For my mind, anytime bikers, biker equipment, and bicycles gather together, it will be a good time. This was obviously the case at the Twin Cites Bicycle Club bike swap. The Twin Cities Bicycle Club was the sponsor of the event. To state the obvious, there are two types of people who atte...

Human-to-Machine Relationships

Large cycling events such as charity fundraiser's are great opportunities to observe different types of bicycles and their owners.   If you work these events as a mechanic, you get to see lots problems in a short period of time, as you quickly diagnosis the issue, fix it, and send t...

Riding on Tea Cups (Ceramic Bearings)

Ceramic bearings are being seen on bicycles and other hobby equipment, such as fishing reels, slot cars, and roller blade wheels. Ceramic bearings are available in most sizes of bicycle cartridge bearings. The cartridge bearings usually use steel inner and outer races, with ceramic bearings betw...

EL MANUBRIO DE BIGOTE

Atención: Para celebrar el Cinco de Mayo, se tradujo este artículo para Calvin Jones, quien no habla español.   Para leer el artículo en inglés, haga clic aquí. Este artículo hablará de las virtudes del manubrio de bigote.   C...

On-The-Bike-Support

Spring time is here, so it time to ride, and fix some bikes while you are at it. This article will be addressed to those who provide support at riding events. This may be for charity rides, century rides, large group rides, or really big family rides. Here at Park Tool, we have provided on-the...

2007 Shimano XTR Components

As manufacturers release new groups and components, there are often new features that require new service procedures. The article below will discuss the service and installation features of select 2007 Shimano® XTR components.

Discovery Cycling Team Training Camp

The Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team holds their winter training camp in Solvang, California. As always, our kind of people, the mechanics, arrive early to get the work done. There will be 30 riders, with road bikes for everyone, plus time trial bikes, reserve bikes and spare wheels, so ther...

Calvin's Last Minute Bike Assembly Guide

Let me begin this article by saying first that if you are reading this hoping to assemble that gift bike, you are already in trouble. Bicycles, even simple "children's" bicycles are vehicles, and are in their own way, sophisticated.   You are better off purchasing a bicycle comple...

SRAM Force and Rival Group Service and Installation

As manufacturers release new groups and components, there are often new features that require new service procedures. This will be the first in a series of articles discussing the newer component groups available from various manufacturers. For the Campagnolo© group see Ultra-Torque and Re...

2005 World Championships with the USA Team Shop

This article will discuss the activities of Calvin Jones of Park Tool and the USA Team Shop at the 2005 Mountain Bike World Championships in Livigno, Italy. USA Cycling Team is selected by USA Cycling for the World Championships, held this year in Livigno, Italy. During most of the year, these ...

Technical Support at 24-Hour Races

24-hour racing is very demanding on riders, bikes, race officials, promoters, and technical support. I recently attended the 24-9, host of the US National 24 Hour Championship, held on a hot, sultry weekend, deep in woods on Nine-Mile forest of Wisconsin. As is usually the case, it was a...

Bike Festivals

Bike festivals are always fun.   People come to them in a good mood and are ready to talk about what they like best....bikes.   The University of Minnesota recently hosted the "Bike-In at the Bell," held at the University's Bell Museum.    It was an evening of outdo...

Why I Prefer the Older Rides

My friends say that I seem to prefer older bikes, and, in fact, they're right. I do like the older machines, but only for myself. Actually, I love the newer technologies. Hydraulic braking systems, electronic shifting, 10-speed rear cassettes, carbon frames and components of all kinds are ...

A Visit with Julien DeVries, Chief of Mechanics for the Discovery Channel Cycling Team

The 2006 Discovery Channel Professional Cycling Team gathered recently for their annual training camp and I was honored and excited to be a part of it.   This year's camp took place in Solvang, California from January 14 th to 27 th . This is the time when the riders and staff begin prep...

Race Mechanic Clinic at the Olympic Training Center

NOTE: The 2007 Bill Woodul Race Mechanic Clinic, will be January 11-14. For more information visit http://www.usacycling.org/mechanics/ Click on "Mechanics Clinic" at that link. I just returned from a trip to Colorado. Each year, I am a guest speaker at the Bill Woodul Race Mechanic Cl...