hi i got a hardtail bike. no fancy branded sus, just stock ones.
when i got the bike it was jammed so i sprayed WD40 to free it.
then it was smooth. but now after a while its starting to get stiff again?
will applying oil help?
If you are mechanically incline and like to break open stuff like that...just open the entire thing up and clean out the shocks, spring and the struts to make sure it is free of dirt. The other way would be to bring the bike in for servicing.
A number of bycycle shops are able to get it done for you. If your bike is in relatively good condition and the parts are not too inferior in quality that investment in a servicing by a bike shop can extend the life of your bike, reduce wear and tear and make your ride smoother.
Ask the price for the servicing just the shock or the entire bike if a number of parts are already murky with dried oil stains, dirty grease..etc. If the cost is gonna cost you like a hundred or 2 hundred..I say save your money and get a new cheap bike. But if your bike is bought in the 800 to 1000+ range...( depending on the parts it comes in ) you might consider paying for servicing it.
Opps... Actually a good suspension like Rock Shox cost a few hundreds and up to thousands of dollar, servicing like cleaning and changing of suspension fluid is common.
If no brand one, then maybe buy a new one.
Cycling is actually a expensive hobby like photography, spending $5k for a mountain bike is common.
WD40 is not a lubricant. It is a Water Dispenser (WD). We also use it to dissolve grease. That may explain why your suspension fork is now dead because the WD dissolved the lubricant.
Why don't you post your question to the cycling expert at togoparts.com?
As I have not seen your shock even I am not sure how to open it up. But it is logical to say if they have a way to put it together, they is a way to open it back up. The locking bolts..eg might be masked by stickers or uses locking parts that you might not recognise.
WD40 is great for removing rust, dirt that has caked over after years of getting coated as you ride but yup it take your lubricate out too.
And don't use Singer Oil anymore lah heheheheh... That is a very very very light lubricate that will not work on heavy sliding shock struts. heheh your shock is not a sewing machine.
You need something thicken and clingy but then again you need to know exactly where to apply lubricate and where you should not!! heh.
I could suggest you buy a new shock but it can be pretty complicated too. For one thing, it might set you back more then $200 for the most generic shock if you can find one. And there is also the issue of what kind of headset and thread you use to fit the shock to your bike's frame and then connect it to your handle bar. If the cheaper shock has a difference mounting bracket...you are still screwed. heheh...I am only scratching the surface here. Suffice to say, cheap bikes are never meant to be repaired. You use them till they break and then you dump them.
That is why I feel doing it yourself it the best option but if you are not good with tools and toying around with your bike parts...even that option is not open to you unless you willing to chance it and give it ago.
Last edited by sammy888; 25th April 2008 at 09:23 PM.
It depends on which parts I am applying it on. I could be using Pedro fro my chain to something light ( but not as light as singer oil heheh) oil or grease that has added teflon. Like your shocks you need something that is water resistant, will not thicken in cold or thin out in hot temp. They are also mostly synthetically made oil which means great lube properties like the real thing but non of the disadvantages. Well...something to that effect lah heheh..
Usually the parts that would need the lubricate is not the parts you can see. Something light to cover it with a thin layer would be fine. But it is dismantling the shock struts to get inside the elastoma, air tube and/or spring system is where you need to get to. This way you clean out all the gunky junky dirt, harden grease....etc. Then you apply a light grease like those from Finish Line which you can find in all the fine bike shops.
I saw that picture... I am sure there are some nut or bolting on the shock to open it up lah..you just need to look carefully...IF..you want to really take a chance to DIY. If your bike look as clean as this picture...maybe you should try calling a few more shops to see if there are any takers to help you clean and re-lube your shocks.
Have you tried adjusting the tension or rebounce on your shock? Also sometime it is not lube that is causing your shocks to not damp well or seem to feel hard and very stiff. Some shock don't use spring/air or in some cases some oil/spring...eg. Some older type technology uses Elastomer which is basically blocks of synthetic rubber. They are fine as shock dampers but they have a life span depending on how good the quality. As it age, they get stiff and have less rebounce from impacts your wheel takes.
Not enough lube on the expose portion of your struts ( the chrome portion that slides into a arger tube) it is not always very slick with oil. So don't think that could be the problem if you find them too dry or not slippery enough. But what you can also look out for is any long scratch lines on the strut. This would mean excess friction that could also hamper the shock from going in and out of the larger bottom tubes. Friction can also mean a slightly bent strut so it is not going in and out of the outer tube properly thus restrict rebounce.
You can also pose your question at togoparts.com at the forum segment to ask if any one knows of the local bike shop who can help you with your non branded shock problem.
Last edited by sammy888; 25th April 2008 at 11:43 PM.
after looking at your bike, here are my suggestions,
1) ditch the fork and get a new one, or if you can't afford a brand new fork, a 2nd hand one of decent quality will do. it sounds like the springs or elastomers in your current fork are stuffed. if they're elastomers, no amount of lubrication will revive them.
2) change your seat post. the steel unit you've got with the separate collar for the saddle is a no no. first big bump you hit and the seat will turn and change angle on you. get an alloy post with the saddle clamp integrated with the post. make sure you get the right diameter post.
3) cut the excess cables from your deraileurs. these tend to snag twigs and other stuff along the trail. make sure you cover the ends of the cut cables, frayed cables are next to impossible to repair.
4) use WD40 only to loosen tight nuts/bolts, or to clean your chain. it's not really a lubricant. sammy's right, singer oil is way to light. it'll squish out first chance it gets.
i used to use pedros or one of those synthetic oils. they're thicker, resist water and last longer. before you lube your chain, clean it thoroughly of all dirt and old lubricant. i like to use kerosene, it's cheap and really does the job. just soak the whole chain for a few minutes and go through it with an old toothbrush. after that wash the chain with soap and water to remove all the kerosene. (this is very important as kero removes all lubricants). let the chain dry before you apply new lube.
when you lube your chain, just place a drop on each link. don't smother the whole chain. this just makes your chain a dirt magnet.
hope this helps.
Yours is a steel bike....Wow....that is heavy!