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Bike Maintenance Workshop

Bike Maintenance Workshop

On Sunday afternoon we gathered at the band hall in Garvery’s carpark for a workshop on bike maintenance givenby Dick McElligot of Kingdom CC.

Targeted at those who knew little or nothing about basic bike maintenance, the talk was nevertheless extremely informative and packed with great tips, helped along by Dicks vast experience and humorous delivery.

The talk covered a wide range of topics in great detail, including:

  • Cleaning your bike
  • Changing a tire
  • How to use CO2 canisters
  • Replacing handlebar tape
  • Bike fit
  • Safety/Security measures

Safety and Security

One short but key point that we should all make note of:

  • Place an ICE number (In Case of Emergency) on your bike and on your helmet in case of accident
  • Make a note of the bike serial number on your frame (and ideally stash some unique identifying information somewhere on the bike, in the handlebars for example by popping off the caps)

Cleaning and Lubricating Your Bike

Dick started the talk by giving a detailed demonstration of how to clean your bike.


Proper cleaning of a bike is one of the most basic yet effective ways of keeping a bike in good condition. Dick optimistically suggested this should be done after every ride. Judging by the giggle of disbelief from the audience this is unlikely to happen but we can’t say we weren’t warned.

We stepped outside of the band hall into the cold Sunday afternoon where Dick was like the “Kim and Aggie” of bike maintenance, giving an information packed talk in a no-nonsense but humourous way.
Who knew watching someone clean a bike could be so engaging?!?!

The list of items we need for our next bike clean:

  • Petrol
  • WD40
  • Soapy Water
  • Plastic dish washing/scrubbing brush
  • Small paint brush
  • Plenty of rags

We then moved inside where Dick spoke about a range of other maintenance related tasks.

Changing a Tyre

First Dick demonstrated how to change a tyre – a seemingly simple task but the Dick highlighted all the places where it could go wrong and how to make the process as easy as possible.


  • Don’t forget to remove the holding ring from the valve
  • Check the tyre inside and out for thorns, glass nails etc before putting the new tube in
  • Slightly inflate the tube once you have the valve in place, just before you push it in under the tyre
  • Start pushing the tyre back on from the opposite side to the valve.

Dick recommended this video on GCN :

How To Change A Bicycle Inner Tube

Other Topics

  • Dick went on talk about CO2 canisters and how to use them to inflate a tire, the correct way to fit handlebar tape. Again, Dick recommended a video to show you how to do this : How To Change Bar Tape
  • Dick advocated for carrying as little as possible with you on the bike. For example, he carries a phone, gels and a CO2 cannister in the pockets of his bike top. In his spare waterbottle he carries a spare tube, levers/spanners, and €10.
  • Dick stressed the importance of bike fit and the role it plays in preventing injury. If you are getting pains in your knees, hips or ankles from cycling have you bike fit checked.

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The hands on nature of the lecture and the amount of detail and experience that Dick provided made for a great workshop. Our thanks to Dick and Kindgom CC.

Now go clean your bike!

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Tralee Triathlon Club
Established 2009
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