Well here it is another Hump day (hopefully…hehe!) and for sure if you’ve been riding to work this summer or anytime at all your going to encounter some problem with your rig. Normally for me this ends up being in the middle of the week when it is totally inconvenient to repair or fix whatever the problem is rather than on a weekend when I already have my tools out and am working on something anyway.
For that reason this first Wednesday and many to follow will hopefully be repair/ bike hack day. Whats a bike hack? Like a computer hack only for your bike. Most marketing professionals in the industry want you to think you have to drop at least $100 every time you enter the LBS (local bike shop). Really there are a ton of things you can make or do yourself at home to pimp out your whip/ customize without having to drop cash (or in the case of todays hack something your gonna buy anyway, beer).
Let’s start with the repair though since my idea for this post stems from the fact that I had to do this last night. If you live in the city and probably even the suburbs around Richmond you know that not having a bike lock is like sexing whores without prophylactics. You might keep your steed for a little while but eventually it’s gonna turn brown and fall off, or your bike will get stolen. Either way, it’s dangerous. The lock I have isn’t ideal for my needs anymore but I bought it about 10 years ago and even though the bike I bought the same time as the lock has long since been stolen (see what I mean, strap yo shit!) this puppy keeps on ticking so I can’t really justify dropping hard earned fake money on another one….until last Monday that is. I just got to work, late, in the AM as usual, and the key would not turn to secure the lock on the bike and rack. WTF?! Well, just so happens I have had this problem at my house too so I had the correct remedy available but years of rain, sand, grit, and bum scum coming up off the streets will seize the lock mechanism totally up. Here is what you do to make it better than new:
1. DO NOT FORCE THE LOCK OR KEY TO TURN! Can’t stress this enough cause you will end up breaking a nice lock,unless your lock sucks than do it and go buy a nice lock. (Update- There are shit drooling retards out there as evidenced by this post so DO NOT BREAK YOUR KEY OFF WHILE YOUR BIKE IS LOCKED UP!)
2. Get you some GRAPHITE POWDER LUBRICANT. I just found this on the internet but you can get it at any hardware store. Again, if you own your house like I do you should have this anyway for the locks there too cause it will happen to them sometime too.
3. Dump that shit in the hole (do this outside, it’s messy)….really you don’t need a whole lot but if you have a barrel lock like mine just dump it in the hole. If you use a regular key you can apply some to the key and, with the key upright on the side you put the graphite on insert into the lock. DON’T FORCE IT! That’s why your doing this to fix yo shit, forcing things will not fix it.
4. Work the key like you normally would a couple times and BAM….butter like new. Mine works excellent now. Final thought on this fix is you could probably use some other lubricant like WD-40 or something to improve the lock, but I would advise against it. Graphite is made for locks and is a dry powder so no liquid. There is probably a reason (here) not to use WD-40 which is the gunky sticky buildup resulting from the liquid.